A Haunting Decision

It is a part of human nature to second guess yourself, to doubt a decision that you make at any given time when presented with new information. However, doubt may result in our demise. 

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Personally, I think the fear of failing and the doubt that creeps behind us constantly keeps many of us away from our dreams and goals and, consequently, our success. 

In the end, I think the moral of the story is to always believe in yourself, and don’t second guess yourself too much. Believing in yourself creates this confidence within yourself, especially when you actually take the chance and succeed. 

Believe in yourself, because if you don’t, don’t count on anyone else believing in you either. 

The Evolution of Complexity

Things are not just born complicated. Various factors play a role in how complexity grows, how it develops, and how it ultimately affects the people who must deal with the complex complexities. A basic example that everyone has experienced is life in its general self. 

Most children, at a young age, are innocent, carefree, with no true complexity in their feelings. Their emotions are easily readable, and their actions predictable. They live a stress-free life, one where everyone is friends with everyone and school was where you put together puzzles as a class and got to eat lunch with people other than your family. Unfortunately, this simple state of mind evaporates when we evolve into grade school and middle school. Everyone isn’t friends with everyone, three essays are due the next day, two tests must be passed to maintain a grade, relationships that involve something past the boundary of friendships begin, and the complex complexities begin. 

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Even more unfortunately for us, things–though they may not necessarily get worse–get far more complicated during the later years. 8 PM bedtimes  wave their last goodbye as the hour hand ticks past the nine, the ten, the eleven, the twelve. Three essays are a piece of cake considering they are replaced with seven essays. Friendships that were so confusing and hard to maintain in middle school only get stickier here, where in a blink of an eye, a friend can become an enemy. 

Despite it all, complexity is not a bad thing. Yes, it makes things more stressful and makes kids shed a few more tears than they may want to, but these complex complexities also provide leeway for children to grow into adults, to take responsibility for themselves, and eventually their families. Complexity is a phenomenon of life, causing so much pain yet so much growth and wisdom and potential happiness.  

Am I a Number?

They're lying

They say we’re not a statistic,

But their actions prove them wrong.

We’re numbers on a paper,

And we’ve all sung this song.

They want us to be special,

To stand out among the crowd,

But how is that realistic

When everyone’s so fantastic?

They want us all well-rounded,

Renaissance men in the making

To be impossibly amazing.

But don’t they understand that

Year after year after year,

The imaginary bar rises,

And those poor souls in the next class

Must take more, do more, be more.

Am I still human?

Or did this game morph me?

Into a slender number

That is easier to pick

From that magician’s hat?

The Power of Words

Now that college applications are out of the way, what better way to get over the frustration and anxiety than vent about college applications?

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I think I’ve actually begun to hate the expression “Show, don’t tell.” I probably wouldn’t hate it so much if I were better at it, but after practicing a vicious cycle last year, I thought I was actually pretty good at it…until applications proved me wrong. Yeah, I understand that describing how you feel in a shaded room with a light breeze fluttering through the window is a million times stronger and more beautiful than saying “the wind blew into the room” and of course, I appreciate the artfulness of the way words are crafted, but is there not enough anxiety that comes with college applications that another two large burdens in the form of essays must accompany the application process?

My peers and I all say that we’re relieved that our applications are out of the way, but are they really? The end of November marks the end of our public applications being due. But what about the poor souls who must suffer yet another round come January? They don’t get to go outside and enjoy the brisk air and pure snow–though, who am I kidding? I live in southern California, and the closest we ever got to snow was this one crazy rainy day back in 2010. Ah, but you must ask, why put ourselves through all this misery? The answer remains simple: everyone is ambitious, and everyone wants to get into the best of the best. Where I come from, settling is not an option; you fight for what you think you deserve, and if whoever you’re fighting (in this case, California universities) thinks that you’re worth their while, then they welcome you with open arms and wipe away your anxious tears.

UC applications complete = Round 1 KO.

The Relationship Builder: Secrets

You confide in people you trust, you tell them your deepest, darkest secrets, and through that, you build your relationship further. But let’s go back to the beginning of it all, before you told them your secret.

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You don’t simply tell people you think are going to blab your secret out to the world your most confidential thoughts. In a relationship where you are ready to confide in someone with your musings, you already have a relationship built with them. For instance, I’m not just going to walk up to some random man on the subway and tell him that I have this huge crush on (insert name here) and he is so dreamy! Mostly because there aren’t subways where I’m from, but also because I have no connection to that man. In more cases than none, you typically tell your secret to someone you have a very strong relationship with. In the same way that you don’t share your political standing with a lot of people, secrets and meant to be secrets for a reason–if the spill, people question it, people patronize it, and people’s feelings get hurt.

If you promise to carry someone’s secret to the grave and (drum roll) actually do it, your relationship automatically becomes five bajillion times stronger, simply because it shows that you respect that person’s wishes and views and do not feel the need to share it with the rest of the world.

Double Standards

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Well Bobby, that is a very good question. Why does the double standard exist? The age-old belief that men are more capable and more intelligent has cleared the way for centuries of sexism. Even now, in an era of rights for all, that old belief still rings. 
Many people would argue that sexism does not exist anymore, that it is some long-ago myth created, but we hear phrases today such as “You punch like a girl!” or “But he’s a guy!” 

The way I see it, we were all created equal and we each have our own contribution to the world, so i find it completely unnecessary to have this double standard. Especially now, in high school, I know that there is this double standard in relationships. Guys are expected to get more out of the relationship, even if the girl gets called names when she gives the guy what he wants. Double standards drive me insane, and I can’t help but get angry and stick up to them every time someone decides to use a phrase that encompasses it. 

Down with the double standard! 

 

Life is a Game, and We Play to Win

“Life’s a game, boy.”
Truer statements have been said, but they don’t make this one any less true. Sometimes, life is a basketball game–fast-paced, heart-pumping, adrenaline-filled, and other times, life is a game of golf–slow, relaxing, cruising.

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No matter what game it is, you play to enjoy yourself, and you play to win. No one wants to fail in life, and guess what? No one has to. Just because you lose one game doesn’t mean you’ll lose them all. While they were with USC, Hank Gathers and Bo Kimble didn’t score like they wanted to, didn’t play like they knew they could. With little adjustments in the game and under Paul Westhead, they played like never before–they shined, they soared, they achieved.

With your own life, just because you lost one thing, just because you didn’t achieve one thing, doesn’t mean anything. You can make a comeback, you can catch that rebound and bring yourself back in the game. Some fouls may be caught, while others may slip the ref’s eyes, but as long as you’re living your life and playing the game to your heart’s fullest, those minor mistakes and those minor problems that arise can’t bring you down.

Play the game, love the game.

-Christine

Trust Issues and How It Will Get You Nowhere

*SPOILER ALERT*

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Oh Othello, what have you done. Foolishly, Othello put his faith and trust into the wrong person, resulting in his wife’s homicide…by him. There were so many things that Othello could have done. He could have put his love before his reputation, his decision-making before his rashness, almost anything would have been better than killing his wife, then killing himself. 

His one true hubris, Othello also trusted Iago when it came to his decisions about Cassio. Not waiting for his second-in-command to explain himself, Othello takes Iago’s subtle hints and fires Cassio. 

Trust is the single most important thing in relationships, and because of his lack of trust, Othello destroyed his connections with Desdemona and Cassio. However, trust can also be taken advantage of, as seen with Iago’s relationship with Othello. To trust or not to trust, that is the question. 

Crops and Crows

Recently, my English class did an activity called “Crops and Crows” to analyze our ideas for our big “What If?” Project.

ImageHowever, instead of killing my ideas and squashing and hopes and dreams, my classmates actually asked questions (as crows) while I answered (as a crop). These series of questions are asked to correct potential flaws before they arise.

For instance, my original idea was to host a food drive at a church on a monthly basis for the needy. However, Rachel brought up the point that the whole thing has been done before and suggested going to a youth center instead.

Our organization is still going to be called “Feed the Need,” but now instead of literally feeding people food, we will be sharing our love. 🙂