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Thoughts on Boston

These are my thoughts on Boston. I don’t really have any recollection of what I was writing, and what I was trying to say while writing. Hopefully you will still understand.

Bad things happened in the world when I was a child. There were school shootings, robberies, murders, and acts of terrorism.

I could separate myself from these events, there was no need to care about war or evil when you are so little. I’m sure I was aware that there were “bad things” going on in my world. I was still warned that bad people lurked in dark corners, alleys, vacant parking lots. Bad things happened because bad people existed. Guns are bad. Knives are bad. Killing people is bad.

Now that I’m almost 20, I can’t begin to grasp this “bad” world that I live in. It’s no longer acceptable for me to go into my room and play with dolls, entering a fantasy world where there is peace for everyone. When I was little, this could be my escape. I could enter a different world and pretend that the things I didn’t want to exist, didn’t.

I can no longer do that. I can’t hide in my room pretending like these things don’t exist. They do, and how do I live knowing this?

After the Sandy Hook shooting, I thought of all the people I know who have kids in elementary schools. I thought of how the school district of my town cut down on security guards due to the budget. I thought of how my mom works as an aide in an elementary school, and how if there was a “Code Red” that wasn’t a drill, she would be responsible for protecting the children. I thought of what I am supposed to do when I have kids, and need to send them off the school. I don’t want them to go.

I don’t want to go anywhere. I want to stay inside, and pretend that the world is a place of peace. Where are my dolls when I need them?

I’ve been following the updates on the Boston explosion for days now. I don’t know what it is about this event that has made me so drained, so angered and sad. I don’t even know anyone who was at the marathon, not anyone who was hurt at least. Why should I care? I don’t live in Boston. I don’t know anyone there.

I care because I am no longer a little girl in her room. I go outside, to class, school, the store—I walk the streets alone. I am aware of the world. I am aware of these happenings. I can never forget.

I can see myself years later. I can see myself remembering that I was a young girl, too young, to witness 9/11.I will talk about Iraq, Libya, Egypt. I will talk about Sandy Hook. I will talk about Boston. What else will I talk about?

We can’t predict the future. But we are supposed to move on regardless. You live and you learn. I don’t want to live, at least not in a world like this. But what choice do I have? What choice do any of us have?

I listened to a talk show yesterday, my favorite talk show (Elvis Duran and the Morning Show), and Elvis talked about how even though it’s necessary to listen to every detail of an event like Boston’s, at some point you just need to get off the computer and pull yourself away. I can’t pull myself away.

I’m drawn to news like a moth to a light. When the light is cut off, I’m fluttering around unsure of what to do. It drives me crazy. I need that light. I need the news.

I get so angered when people sit and pick apart the media, telling me they are too involved. They are too involved, reporters are annoying, they don’t know anything, the news is bias, they cover what they want to cover (shut up shut up shut up shut up)

My professor told me I need to have a thick skin to be a reporter. I am getting there.

I used to play Call of Duty with my brother. I got pretty good at it. I liked using the machine guns that would shoot a lot of bullets in a second. I thought it was cool to scope out an enemy, the shoot them in the head from so many miles away. I could plant bombs, playing “capture the flag” in the meantime. I threw grenades hoping I would get more kills than my brother.

What the hell is wrong with me?

What’s wrong with the world we live in? Why do people target schools or malls or marathons? I will never know this answer.

Hash tags on Twitter suggest I #PrayforBoston. I don’t include this tag. I keep Boston and their people in my thoughts. The runners run through my minds, make laps in my brain. The eight-year-old is someone I can’t get out of my mind. I cried so hard when I read that article. I still cry. I will never stop crying. I don’t even know him.

I think my breaking point was this event. I just want so badly for me to walk the streets without fear. I want to walk down dark alleys in a short skirt and be safe. I want to send my kids off with no thoughts in the back of my mind (is this is the last time I will see them?!). I want to not be worried when my boyfriend walks at night with his laptop. I want to go to big parades, concerts, marathons, and be unafraid.

I have to have a thick skin. What if my writing is recognized by a big newspaper, and they send me off the a story like Boston? What if I am one of the reporters that writes a story that lets a parent know their son/daughter in Boston is okay? What if I honored Martin Richard with a moving story? What if I was at the scene, tweeting away, letting people know what was going on?

That’s what I want to do, to write and let people know what is going on. This girl is grown up. I still choose to go into my fantasy world where everyone is safe, but I am aware of the real world I live in. I want to become fearless, but I think that is something that doesn’t happen overnight. Maybe you’ll read my byline one day, and remember what I wrote here, on this day. I want to show people that we can get over our fears. That despite all the “bad things” that will not change, there are the “good things” to recognize. Good people reside in hospitals, fire stations, police stations, (and news rooms). Good things happen because good people exist. Helping hands are good. Hugs are good. Helping people is good.

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Dramatic Way to Support a Cause

At the Indianapolis Colt’s Sunday game, some of the cheerleaders shaved their heads to support their Coach who is suffering with leukemia.

While this may seem like a selfless act, I disagree with their actions.

I do think that it was generous for one of the cheerleaders, Megan, to say if fans raised $10,000 for cancer research she would shave her head.  Obviously, fans exceeded this amount, raising over $22,000 for research.

Another fellow cheerleader would also get her head shaved, and join her friend Megan.

Now, you would think the girls would shave their heads and then come out on the field to show the fans.  But instead, they do it on the field and make an enormous show out of it.  This was no doubt a PR move.

I think it is amazing that the cheerleaders got the fans to raise so much money for cancer research.  But I believe that by shaving your head on the field serves more as a form of entertainment than a charity cause.

Not to mention, both girls are extremely gorgeous and have amazing cheerleader bodies.  So by shaving your head you really aren’t losing much.  I can guarantee there would be less attraction to this “shaving head event” if it was a girl of average looks and perhaps not that great of body.

If you can use your looks to raise money for an important cause, then by all means please do it.  By making a huge scene out of something that should be respected, in my opinion, is not the way to support the cause.  The man did lose his hair, yes, but by doing the same thing to yourself on the field is no way to make him feel better.

It’s a hairy situation in my mind!

Where’d All the Patience Go?

Yesterday I had to go to Walmart to pick up a few odds and ends for school.  I only had about five or so items, and everyone else had a lot more than me.  What made it worse was that there were only three registers open for checking out.  As I waited, I started tapping my foot, impatiently.  Then, I deeply sighed to myself in frustration.

Where are all the employees?  I have places to go.  I have to get to work.  I only have five stinkin’ items.  

That’s when I realized I was demonstrating a stereotypical American individual; rude and impatient.

This made me wonder, why are we so impatient?  Why is waiting in a line for more than five minutes life-altering?

Our lives are too fast.  Everything as at the tip of our fingertips, or sent to us in a fraction of a second.  Waiting in line for five minutes now seems like an eternity because we are used to our daily lives being super speedy. This makes me nervous because as time moves forward and our technology changes every month, we are continuing to grow more impatient, and lazy.  I really do not want this to be our future.

So what are we to do?  It’s easier said than done to just “stop being lazy.”  It’s actually impossible to some people.  In Walmart when I acted like waiting in line for a few minutes was the worst thing in the world, I just thought about how ridiculous I was being.  Instead, I thought to myself, “Well, it was my decision to go to Walmart on a whim so I have no right to be complaining.”

Like I said, easier said than done.  I know several people who would not be able to alter their thoughts into positive thinking.

I also think that our fast-paced days makes people develop rude habits.  For instance, obeying the rules of the road has now become faux pas.  If you drive the speed limit, you see a car riding your butt.  If you stop the appropriate amount of time at a stop sign, the car behind you rides your butt.  If you are going the speed limit in a lane, the car behind you zooms angrily in the next lane to get around you.  No one stops at stop lights when they turn yellow.  People constantly run red lights, and go too fast on the roads.  No one stops for pedestrians, even if they have a cross walk.  People yell profanities, and flip you off if you reprimand them (by casually beeping the horn the car came installed with) for disobeying the law.

Everyone needs to get to their destination lickity-split.  When they have to wait in traffic, dear Lord, it’s a madhouse on the roads.  You have to always anticipate the worst in life, and I think people are failing to forget to do this.  Some days you will encounter unfortunate events on the road, but this certainly does not give us the right to be rude and impatient.  You are endangering not only the safety of yourself, but others.

Sometimes you have to have patience.  It is really difficult at times, but I think developing patience is something that everyone should try.  You will see yourself becoming more relaxed, and notice others around you to appear more calm than usual.

Frankenstorm Didn’t Kill Facebook (Although I Wish it Did)

Now that Frankenstorm has done it’s damage, it’s time to sit back and think about what we learned.

Wait, what?

You heard me.  I think that we can learn a lot from this storm.  For one, you can never be too prepared.  As much as you think that nothing bad will happen to you or your family, you can never be so sure.  Although my family was prepared, we never could have anticipated the water damage we received after the storm.  There were tons of leaks in multiple parts of our house.  We know now that we should expect that as a worse case scenario.

Something else that I learned, is being grateful for everything that we have.  We live in a first world nation.  We are constantly connected to the internet, our phones, our electronic gadgets, and electricity as a whole.  That’s why with a storm like this, people went ballistic.  I can’t tell you how many Facebook statuses I read, or tweets, saying “OMG NO POWER.”  The first thing these kids were thinking of wasn’t “Oh no, how will I be able to heat up food, or keep my food refrigerated ”  No, the first thing people do is update their statuses to Facebook.  Let me just quick scroll through the list of people that told me their power was off, like they didn’t know that was going to happen.  First, I would like to point out that this was a given.  We were expecting a tropical storm to hit, what did you think?  The endless virtual complaints angered me so much, I just got off my computer.  I was thankful enough to have kept my power.  It went off for about a minute tops.  So, call me biased but I think the complaining is ridiculous.  Your power will eventually come back on.  I know it feels like you can’t do anything, but maybe being without your laptop and cell phone is a bit healthy?  It allows you to talk with your family or friends, with no electrical interference.  Sometimes, good ol’ quality time can make the day go by a lot faster.

I drove by houses today and saw several uprooted trees, broken power lines, and a few slightly destroyed houses.  It really makes me sit back and realize how lucky, how unbelievably lucky my family is.  If a tree fell on our house, I know we would not be able to afford the repair costs, and I’m not sure how insurance works with trees crushing your house.  Also, if you really want to be thankful, we can look at all of the houses and cars that are destroyed, and lives that are altered because of this hurricane.  The places where the most damage was seen was obviously along the cost.  Some of these houses are either flooded, or destroyed.  Streets in New York were flooded.  Shore houses need full repair.  I think it’s a little sad that we are complaining about not being able to charge our phones.

It’s hard to compare a mountain and a mole hill.  But, I think with situations like these it makes sense.  No matter what happens to you in life, you need to learn to pick yourself up, and think of all the good things that you have in your life.  Bad things are always going to happen.  It’s all about how you deal with the situation.

I hope that the people who have damaged homes, or loss of power for days and days, will seek peace soon.  I surely wish that there was something I could do to help.  I think keeping a positive attitude is the one think I can do for sure.