Friday, December 31, 2010

Snapshots of 2010

Wow. What a year. It's been filled with love, hate, confusion, snow (and a lot of it), awkwardness, laughter, memories, and so many indescribable/you just had to be there moments... And, of course, some that's what she said moments.

I've met people this year who I feel like I've known my entire life, and only wish that our friendships would have started much sooner. I can say that I wouldn't be the pers
on I am today, sitting with a potentially fractured wrist, without so many of the experiences I've had in this year alone. From watching some of my best guy friends cram their feet into too small high heels to seeing Frank Warren present PostSecret (I feel as though the stamp in the book is perfect for this year: "Free your secrets and become who you are." I opened up to a few people this year, and I'm usually not the kind of person to do so. Freeing some of my secrets led to a lot of great friendships and experiences) to a lot of self-discovery, this was a crazy year.

I also got closer to my family this year. Even though I wasn't able to come home a lot because of having the CA job, my brother and I were able to mend our relationship. The distance for college has been re
ally good for us (even if it is only half an hour). We have so many random stories to share (including one about a Twilight Zone-esque donut run at 9:30 at night). I also got to see three concerts this year with my dad, all of which were incredible. My mom and I also might have our differences, but her getting into grad school was one of the proudest moments I've shared with her.

Admittedly, there are things I would have changed. But those are in the past now. In
the words of All Time Low, "maybe it's not my weekend, but it's gonna be my year." 2011, Cary's ready to make some changes for the better. Here goes nothing.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The 68th Golden Globe Awards

In keeping with my previous posts about the Grammy Awards and the Emmys, why not keep this mini tradition going and have a post about the GGs? [Admittedly, I've not seen as many of these movies as I would have liked, so I'm going off of what friends have told me, what I've read online, etc., when I pick winners for things I haven't seen.]

Not unlike my Grammy picks, I'll present the category, my winner prediction, and who I want to see win. And on Sunday, January 16, we'll see how the picks shape up to the winners... So it begins.

Best Motion Picture [Drama]
My winner pred
iction | Inception [though it could be an interesting battle with The Social Network]
Who I want to win | Inception

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture [Drama]

My winner prediction | Natalie Portman, Black Swan
Who I want to win | Natalie Portman
[Confession: This is one of those movies I h
aven't seen but have heard great things about]

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture [Drama]
My winner prediction | Jesse E
isenberg, The Social Network
Who I want to win |
Jesse Eisenberg, The Social Network

Best Motion Picture [Comedy or Musical]
My winner prediction | Alice in Wonderland

Who I want to win | Alice in Wonderland
[Also soon appearing as a bulletin board...]

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture [Comedy or Musical]
My winner prediction | Angelina Jolie, The Tourist
Who I want to win | Emma Stone, Easy A

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture [Comedy or Musical]

My winner prediction | Jake Gyllenhaal, Love and Other Drugs
Who I want to win | Jake Gyllenhaal, Love and Other Drugs

Best Animated Picture
My winner prediction | Toy Story 3
Who I want to win | Toy Story 3
[Do I really need to explain myself for this one? Didn't think so]

Best Foreign Language Film
I haven't seen any of these, nor heard of any of them, so I have no predictions/want to see winner for this category. Though I feel the Millennium trilogy got robbed here. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was brilliant. Noomi Rapace and Michael Nyqvist got robbed as well.

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture
My winner prediction | Amy Adams, The Fighter
Who I want to win | Amy Adams, The Fighter

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture
My winner prediction | Andrew Garfield, The Social Network
Who I want to win | Andrew Garfield, The Social Network

Best Director - Motion Picture
My winner prediction | Christopher Nolan, Inception
Who I want to win | Christopher Nolan, Inception

Best Screenplay [Motion Picture]
My winner prediction | Christopher Nolan, Inception
Who I want to win | Christopher Nolan, Inception

Best Original Score [Motion Picture]
My winner prediction | Hans Zimmer, Inception -or- Danny Elfman, Alice in Wonderland
Who I want to win | Christopher Nolan, Inception

Best Original Song [Motion Picture]
I haven't seen any of these, so I have no predictions/want to see winner for this category.

Best Television Series [Drama]
My winner prediction | The Walking Dead -or- Mad Men
Who I want to win | The Walking Dead

Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series [Drama]
My winner prediction | Elisabeth Moss, Mad Men
Who I want to win | Kyra Sedgwick
, The Closer

Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series [Drama]
My winner prediction | Bryan Cranston, Mad Men
Who I want to win | Hugh Laurie, House

Best Television Series [Comedy or Musical]
My winner prediction | The Big Bang Theory
Who I want to win | The Big Bang Theory

Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series [Comedy or Musical]

My winner prediction | Toni Collette, United States of Tara
Who I want to win | Toni Collete, United States of Tara

Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series [Comedy or Musical]
My winner prediction | Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory
Who I want to win | Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory

Best Mini Series or Motion Picture Made for Television
My winner prediction | You Don't Know Jack
Who I want to win | Temple Grandin
[TG did clean up though at the Emmys]

Best Performance by an Actress in a Mini Series or
Motion Picture Made for Television
My winner prediction | Claire Danes, Temple Grandin
Who I want to win | Claire Danes, Temple Grandin

Best Performance by an Actor in a Mini Series or Motion Picture Made for Television

My winner prediction | Al Pacino, You Don't Know Jack
Who I want to win | Al Pacino, You Don't Know Jack

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini Series, or Motion Picture Made for Television

My winner prediction | Jane Lynch, Glee
Who I want to win | Sofia Vergara, Modern Family

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini Series, or Motion Picture Made for Television
My winner prediction | Scott Caan, Hawaii 5-O
Who I want to win | Chris Colfer, Glee
[From what little Glee I have watched, I love Chris' acting]

And some last notes, gripes, etc.
- Where is Lost? Not on any nomination. Wtf.

- I realize now I need to RedBox some of these movies over break [and yes, I just verbed that noun].
- Yes, I really, really liked Inception.
- Mariska Hargitay wasn't nominated for best actress in a TV series [drama]... I guess you can't win 'em all.
- The nominations for Scott Pilgrim and Repo Men are also not anywhere on these lists.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

2010 Grammy Awards

Not unlike the Emmys, I like to predict Grammy Award winners. Am I good at it? I don't know. This is the first time I've done it. I cut out a LOT of the nominations, as there are 108 categories or so, and nobody wants to read about best Native American album.

And on February 8, we'll see how the predictions match up... Let's begin, shall we?

And, yes, in some instances, I picked a few (so sue me - it's my blog, dammit).

Record of the Year
My winner prediction | Empire State of Mind/Jay-Z and Alicia Keys
Who I want to win | F*** You/Cee Lo Green -or- Need You Now/Lady Antebellum

Album of the Year
My winner prediction | The Fame Monster/Lady Gaga -or- Teenage Dream/Katy Perry
Who I want to win | Need You Now/Lady Antebellum

Song of the Year
My winner prediction | "Love the Way You Lie"/Eminem feat. Rihanna
Who I want to win | "F*** You"/Cee Lo Green -or- "Need You Now"/Lady Antebellum [Can you tell I love these songs?]

Best New Artist
My winner prediction | No clue, really. Possibly Mumford and Songs
Who I want to win | Florence and the Machine. Definitely not Justin Bieber.

Best Female Pop Vocal Performance
My winner prediction | "Bad Romance"/Lady Gaga -or- "Teenage Dream"/Katy Perry
Who I want to win | "Chasing Pirates"/Norah Jones

Best Male Pop Vocal Performance
My winner prediction | "Haven't Met You Yet"/Michael Buble [This song is slowly growing on me. I felt it was way overplayed when it first was released.]
Who I want to win | "Whataya Want from Me"/Adam Lambert [This song actually has some really silly memories attached to it.] -or- "Just the Way You Are"/Bruno Mars

Best Pop Performance by a Duo or a Group with Vocals
My winner prediction | "Hey, Soul Sister (Live)"/Train [I love most of Train's music... but this is the exception to that rule. I cannot stand this song for the life of me. I only picked it to win because it gets so much play time.]
Who I want to win | "The Only Exception," by Paramore
Also, Journey > Glee. Always.

Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals
My winner prediction | "California Gurls"/Katy Perry & Eminem
Who I want to win | ...Honestly, I don't like any of the nominations. Especially "Airplanes." I can't stand that song.

Best Pop Instrumental Performance
My winner prediction | "Nessun Dorma"/Jeff Beck
Who I want to win | "No Mystery"/Stanley Clark [I love Stanley Clark's music]

Best Pop Instrumental Album
My winner prediction | Heart and Soul/Kenny G
Who I want to win | Heart and Soul/Kenny G

Best Pop Vocal Album
My winner prediction | Teenage Dream/Katy Perry -or- The Fame Monster/Lady Gaga
Who I want to win | I Dreamed a Dream/Susan Boyle

Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album

My winner prediction | Fly Me to the Moon/Rod Stewart
Who I want to win | Crazy Love/Michael Buble

Best Solo Rock Performance

My winner prediction | Crossroads/John Mayer
Who I want to win | Helter Skelter/Paul McCartney

Best Rock Performance by a Duo or a Group with Vocals
My winner prediction | Resistance/Muse
Who I want to win | Resistance/Muse

Best Alternative Rock Album
My winner prediction | The Suburbs/Arcade Fire
Who I want to win | Infinite Arms/Band of Horses

Best Urban/Alternative Performance
My winner prediction | "F*** You"/Cee Lo Green
Who I want to win | "F*** You"/Cee Lo Green

Best Country Performance by a Duo or a Group with Vocals
My winner prediction | "Need You Now"/Lady Antebellum
Who I want to win | "Need You Now"/Lady Antebellum

Best Contemporary Jazz Album
My winner prediction | The Stanley Clark Band/The Stanley Clark Band
Who I want to win | The Stanley Clark Band/The Stanley Clark Band

Best Comedy Album
My winner prediction | I Told You I Was Freaky/Flight of the Conchords
Who I want to win | I Told You I Was Freaky/Flight of the Conchords
...I love these guys

Best Score Soundtrack Album for Motion Picture, Television, or Other Visual Media
My winner prediction | Avatar/James Horner, Inception/Hans Zimmer, -or- Toy Story 3/Randy Newman
Who I want to win |
Avatar/James Horner, Inception/Hans Zimmer, -or- Toy Story 3/Randy Newman

Best Song Written for Motion Picture, Television, or Other Visual Media
My winner prediction | "I See You"/Avatar/James Horner
Who I want to win | "I See You"/Avatar/James Horner

Best Historical Album
My winner prediction | The Beatles (Original Studio Recordings)
Who I want to win |
The Beatles (Original Studio Recordings)

And random things I learned along the way...
- There are a lot of categories/genres that are super-obscure, like Native American, Hawaiian, Zedeco, etc.
- Michael Daugherty wrote a composition that shares a name with one of my favorite Lost episodes: Deux Ex Machina
- The "academy" for the Grammys differentiates between traditional and contemporary albums

Friday, November 19, 2010

The Middle

Hey, don't write yourself off yet
It's only in your head you feel left out or looked down on.
Just try your best, try everything you can.
And don't you worry what they tell themselves when you're away.

Wow. What a difference ten days can make. Ten days ago, I was stressed, burned out, broken, and ready to throw it all away. I try to hide the stresses of everyday (which isn't a good idea, but it's what I do), but then it starts eating at me, little by little.

After my posting the list of everything I had to accomplish, I realized something. Some little voice inside my head said go... And, boy, I have I gone. I've held two floor meetings, taken tests and quizzes, wrote (okay, bullshitted) a 14 page paper, and so much more. And you know what? I finally felt like I was accomplishing something. It was a great feeling. (It just took me until the middle of November to realize it.)

It just takes some time, little girl you're in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine, everything (everything) will be alright (alright).

Hey, you know they're all the same.
You know you're doing better on your own, so don't buy in.
Live right now.
Yeah, just be yourself.
It doesn't matter if it's good enough for someone else.

I made time for myself and got a lot done, but still managed to make time for my friends. Even though we're all a bit crazy when we hang out, they're the ones who help me maintain what little I have left of my sanity.

They're the ones who keep me grounded, make me realize it's the little things I'll remember the most, and sometimes give me a metaphorical kick in the butt when I need it (or, if you're Amber, a socially awkward grope, usually in public). Couldn't ask for a better group of people to call my friends.

It just takes some time, little girl you're in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine, everything (everything) will be alright (alright).
It just takes some time, little girl you're in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine, everything (everything) will be alright (alright).

I had an awesome sophomore year... And this year is shaping up to be just as awesome.

Between the countless quotes, awkward moments, and memories; the forty-six (!) lockouts I've had from residents; four of my female residents asking if I've ever had a drink (no), if they can buy me a beer (no joke), and if they could find me a boyfriend (also no); and trying to figure out my place in the world, I can't believe that my first semester as a CA is nearly over.

There were times I wanted to throw in the towel and fly a white flag... But then the little voice talks to me again and pulls me back on my feet. Sometimes, that little voice is inside me, a song, a conversation with a friend... It's amazing what form that little voice shines through.

I also can't believe that this time in exactly a month, the semester will be over, I'll be sitting at home with no worries of residents knocking on my door at 4:15 AM asking to be let in, or complaining about their neighbors' music levels, and I won't be stapling my fingers to my bulletin boards instead of the letters that are supposed to be on there.

Hey, don't write yourself off yet.
It's only in your head you feel left out or looked down on.
Just do your best, do everything you can.
And don't you worry what the bitter hearts are gonna say.

It just takes some time, little girl you're in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine, everything (everything) will be alright (alright).
It just takes some time, little girl you're in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine, everything (everything) will be alright (alright).

Lyrics to "The Middle," by Jimmy Eat World

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


If stress was a person, she just bitch-slapped me (metaphorically speaking, of course). I usually deal with stress really well, but now it's slowing eating me. I think that I finally realized how much I have to do in a little over a month, the reality of it all set in.

I've come to the realization lately that my life needs structure in it. Granted, I usually don't mind changes here and there, but right now, as a CA... I need that organization. As I write this, I look around my room. Newspapers, empty water bottles, crushed Coke cans, library books, and more are strewn everywhere. Then I turn my eyes back to my desk, and there it sits: The list.

The list is a master list of sorts... It's everything and anything that I can think of that must be accomplished, x-ed out, nixed... done by December 17. And by everything... I mean, everything. (Well, nearly everything school and work related).

I have something like...


- 5 tests (2 in psych, 2 in Organizational Behavior, and 1 in business)
- 6 quizzes (3 in business, 3 in psych)
- 2 projects in Desktop Publishing
- 1 paper
- And who knows, probably some homework assignments thrown in there, as well

Community Assistant Stuff
- 25 office hours
- 5 on-call nights
- 2 on-call weekends, one of which is a backup weekend
- 1 bulletin board (hanging it up soon)
- I'm hoping to have 3 builders a week (so around 15 of those)
- 1 program (on Monday)
- 2 room inspections
- 3 or 4 floor meetings
- 2 (probably more) staff meetings and 1:1s

- Library books to return soon (probably Friday when my paper is handed in)
- Time cards to turn in for my note-taking job
- A room to keep clean
- And a class that may or may not be added to my spring schedule

Whew. This list is way too long for my liking, so I'm about to go and tackle as much as I can before I get eaten alive.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

A Change of Pace

I originally wrote this blog post about a week ago as a rant about life. Nothing had been going my way. I wasn't able to secure funding for a program, my room was a wreck, homework sat undone, emotions raged from anger to sadness to happiness to frustration, stress was at an all time high, and I didn't feel like doing a thing...

Now, a week later, that blog post is still written, but it's not posted. I realized that it wasn't up to anyone but me to turn that around. I forced myself to do something. Anything. But I didn't know what that something or anything was. Last weekend was Homecoming at school. I was on-call, and didn't really think much would happen... Or so I thought. Friday and Saturday weren't bad. I worked on some homework, chatted with people, did rounds, etc.

I went to bed around 12:30, 1:00 on Saturday night/Sunday morning. Little did I know my life (as well as a ton of other peoples') was about to be thrown a 360. I got a call at 3 AM that shots were fired at a party off-campus an hour earlier. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. A young man who doesn't attend my school was killed, and a few others were wounded. The campus was in shock and lockdown. We're in a small town college. None of us ever saw something like this happening.

However... that next week (this week) was a complete turnaround for me. And I'm so happy. I have been in an incredible mood all week. What's a little odd about this is that I had no idea what caused this turnaround until last night. I realized that I'm thankful for the little things. I'm realizing that those are what is making me who I really am. The little things turn into the big things. The things I want to remember for the rest of my life.

I've got amazing friends and family. My grades are really good. And I work with some amazing people. I've made memories this year I don't want to soon forget, whether it's lunch with the gang, chatting with residents... Or even the fire alarm going off right after I got out of the shower (t-shirt + shorts + wet hair = freezing cold Cary). It's been an amazing year so far, and I can't wait to get even more out of it.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

89 credits: Redux/Edit

[Edited to cut out things I've already posted and forgot, and to add some new]

As I type this, I've realized in the past few days how truly dependent I am on technology. I usually write my blog posts on a 13.3" MacBook, and can easily see all I've written. Tonight (unless you consider it morning), I'm tapping away on a touchscreen keyboard on my iPod Touch. After my Mac's inverter (what lights the backscreen) finally flickered out, I was admittedly none too pleased. I use my Mac for everything (well, almost everything): email, homework, outlines, essays, taking online quizzes, watching Lost (you know, the essentials).

Anyhow... This realization gave me a lot of time to reflect on some things, since I wasn't distracted by the lure of looking up that "one more thing" online (which, if you're anything like I am, turns into five, ten, twenty more things if I'm not careful). Anyway, I was doing a total overhaul of my room on Sunday. I moved furniture, cleaned, organized, did laundry, and got a lot done. It was really satisfying to get so much done in so little time. I finished everything in about an hour and a half, or thereabouts.

While I was cleaning, I came across the distribution sheet of classes needed to complete my major, in the recommended four year sequence. I set it aside, promising myself to look it over and fill it out when I was done cleaning. After hanging up my last shirt in my closet and putting the last towel on the pile, I picked up the sheet again.

There were classes I had taken, and, of course, those I have yet to take. Upon completing what I could on the sheet (I wrote in the grades I had received for those classes I've already taken), I made a startling revelation: I have attempted/completed 74 credits so far, and I'm in the first semester of my junior year. I'm currently taking 15 credits. This means that I will have 89 at the close of this semester. For those who aren't following, that means I am one single credit hour away from having as many credits as a senior in their first semester would have.

This, in all honesty, scares me in a way. I still need 31 credits to get to the 120 needed for my degree... But when I graduate, I'll have 131 or thereabouts.

Now, as I lay here typing this in my room as a CA, I can honestly and earnestly say that I'm glad that I had a crazy freshman year. It forced me to realize that that isn't what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.

In those two years since my freshman year, I've grown as a person at a rate I didn't even know was possible. Admittedly, I've had wonderful professors and I've had horrible professors. I've lost friends and gained new ones. I didn't know what it was like to have my heart broken and healed. I learned to move on from my past. While I can't totally erase and start new again, there will always be those marks on the chalkboard of my life. They've made me stronger. I'm wearing my battle scars with pride, physically and emotionally.

Until this year, I didn't realize that a single group of friends could be so hilarious, supportive, wonderful, and simply amazing. I've laughed harder these past few months than I had in a really, really long time. I feel like I've known these friends for my entire life.

Now, I think I finally am getting to know who I really am as a person: physically, emotionally, etc. It's been a bumpy road of self-discovery... And it's not over yet.

My current career goal is to work in Human Relations or Organizational Development (as of right now).

Could things change? Absolutely.

And for the first time in a really long time, I'm okay with that - and I couldn't be happier.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Mindset of the Mindset (from ACUHO-I)

I guess I should first say that the ACUHO-I is The Association of College & University Housing Officers - International serving housing professionals. I read their blog, get e-mail updates, etc. It's an interesting way to look at res life elsewhere (and they also have an internship program I'm looking into).

One particular blog post of theirs caught my eye earlier. They mentioned what's called the Beloit Mindset List, which is described as "provid[ing] a look at the cultural touchstones that shape the lives of students entering college this fall" (

Below is a selection of items taht have been on past lists (in bold, with dates), and some of my thoughts regarding them.

Nothing like a nontraditional blog post, eh?

Few in the class know how to write in cursive (2010).
I can honestly say, I learned how to write cursive in 2nd grade. Never really used unless I had to. However, now that I'm in a class that takes 5-7 pages of notes (front/back) a class, it's used all the time in there.

South Africa's official policy of apartheid has not existed during their lifetime (2002).
I learned about apartheid in 6th grade, and wrote a report about it. It was definitely an interesting thing to learn about. I've always enjoyed history, and this was part of that.

Smoking has never been permitted on U.S. airlines (2006).
Well, this one is definitely obvious, but I've got relatives (including my dad) who remember when it was still allowed.

They have never feared a nuclear war. "The day after" is a pill to them -- not a movie (1998).
I try to keep up on the news the best I can. I still see the fear that some people hold as far as war goes. I suppose the same fear is with pregnancy with college students.

There has always been Diet Coke (2001).
Hahaha. Yep. I know some people who are addicted to the stuff. To which I say, ew. Regular or nothing for me.

This generation has never wanted to "be a Pepper too" (2002).
I'm guessing this is referring to Dr. Pepper. I don't drink the stuff, and don't really care to try it.

When they were born, Madonna was still a radiant woman holding a beatific child (2001).
Considering I'm not a Madonna fan, I don't know how to comment on this one.

Harry has always known Sally (2003).
I still have yet to see "When Harry Met Sally...," so this one's not really applicable in a sense.

Fergie is a pop singer, not a princess. (2010)
And an interesting singer, at that...

Males do not carry a handkerchief in a back pocket (2002).
This is true...

Dilbert has always been ridiculing cubicle culture. (2007)
My dad appreciates Dilbert, since he works in a cube. I want to go into HR, and I appreciate it as well. We always ask each other if we've read it yet that day.

There have always been non-stop flights around the world without refueling. (2003)
This still blows my mind that this is possible.

Margaret Thatcher has always been a former prime minister. (2009)
Yep. At least in my 20 years of being here.

They have never used a bottle of “White Out.”
I've used it. I had to make sure it was on my supply list this year because I knew I'd be using it.

Secondhand smoke has always been an official carcinogen. (2010)
That it has. Sad, really.

They have never needed a prescription to buy ibuprofen. (1999)
Considering I don't buy meds, I don't usually think about this kind of thing, but it's interesting to think about.

Oprah has always been a national institution. (2001)
Honestly, I'm really not an Oprah fan (sorry all you Oprah-lovers).

Woodstock is a bird or a reunion, not a cultural touchstone. (2000)
My first concert was filled with performers from Woodstock (Jefferson Airplane, Country Joe McDonald, and Tom Constanten from the Grateful Dead). I know what it is, and I can't even imagine how epic it must have been.

They may never have heard of an 8-track, and chances are they’ve never heard or seen one. (1998)
I know what it is, where my dad has some, and I don't recalled if he's played it or not. (One of the awesome things about having a dad who doesn't like getting rid of things).

A “45″ is a gun, not a record with a large hole in the center. (2000)
Similarly, my dad's got a bunch of records, so I do know what it is... And now he just needs the needle for his record player so that I can listen to them!

Big Brother is merely a television show. (2002)
Not a fan of the TV show, but I really liked the books 1984 and Brave New World.

Gas stations have never fixed flats, but most serve cappuccino. (2008)
Haha, so true... Thank goodness for the kindess of strangers and AAA.

Their lifetime has always included AIDS. (1998)
Sad, but true...

John Lennon and John Belushi have always been dead. (1999)
And, yet, I'm still a fan of both. :)

The Soviet Union has never existed and therefore is about as scary as the student union. (2006)
Bwahaha. My dad went to Russia when it was the USSR in 1970, and I love hearing his stories.

They don’t know who Mork was, or where he was from. (1998)
I know who he is, but not where he's from (is it Mars?)

Nobody has ever responded to “Help, I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.” (2009)
All this makes me think is the senior video from my senior year of high school.

They never saw the shuttle Challenger fly. (2005)
Can't say that I have.

They never “rolled down” a car window. (2007)
Oh, the memories of my mom's old Honda Accord...

There have always been ATM machines. (2000)
Yep. Not really too much else to say besides that.

They have no idea how big a breadbox is. (1999)
I think my grandparents might still have one.

Electronic filing of tax returns has always been an option. (2008)
I think I can remember my parents sending one via mail before e-filing was possible.

Wayne Gretzky never played for Edmonton. (2005)
I'm a football fan, not hockey.

Leasing has always allowed the folks to upgrade their tastes in cars. (2010)
Haha, so true...

Retin-A has always made America look less wrinkled. (2006)
Not quite sure how respond to this one, as I just tell my mom that wrinkles go where smiles have been.

For daily caffeine emergencies, Starbucks has always been around the corner. (2005)
Unless you're in small town Cali. Haha.

Large fine-print ads for prescription drugs have always appeared in magazines. (2003)
This is true...

Babies have always had a Social Security Number. (2009)
Yup. I don't remember not being asked for one for job purposes, applying to college, etc.

The blog article can be found here:

What are your thoughts?

Comments = always welcome.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Calm Before the Storm

Wow. It's been one hell of a week, and guess what? It's only Tuesday at 8:02 PM as I type this.

So far this week, I've been on-call, had 5 classes, had a 2 hour meeting, and gotten about 12 hours of sleep (if that). Looking forward to the week ahead, I have 8 more classes, 2 tests (5 if you count the online ones), 5 office hours, an internship meeting, a floor meeting (tonight), student convocation, family weekend, and a concert to attend. Whew. I do not know what I'd do without my calendar. Probably scream, cry, punch a pillow, and scream some more. And more than likely, swear like a sailor (not that I don't do that anyway).

But you think that sounds busy? Oh, dear readers, you have no idea. Starting tomorrow and ending November 1, I have something to do every day (apart from three sporadic days during which I'm sure something will come up). These things include tests, quizzes, meetings, office hours, a handful of Open Houses/Discovery Days, Family Weekend, and oodles more. Including a luncheon with the university president.

What gets me through this craziness? Besides copious amounts of caffeine of course, seeing my wonderful friends in classes and outside of class, a nice little thing called 2 paychecks every two weeks, and the fact I'm getting off of campus for a while on Thursday night. (I won tickets to a jazz show, and my dad and I are going to it together. I'm so excited.)

I also have a bulletin board due near the end of next month, but I'm already planning that one out. My bulletin board theme ideas for the coming months are (this is how I stay awake during business class)...
- Creepy Creatures and Ghastly Ghouls
- Who Do You Share a Birthday With? [Celebrity birthdays and pics]
- AFI's 100 Years, 100 Quotes [The top movie quotes from various flicks]
- Alice in Wonderland
- Rolling Stone Magazine's Top 100 Albums of All Time [Complete with album art]
- Unique Spring Break Trips
- Piecing it all Together [Asking residents what their favorite part of the school year was... finally an excuse to use my puzzle piece border. Get it? Piecing it together? Lame, yes; but should be a fun interactive board]

But that's the calm before the storm that is the month of October. Whew.

Comments are always welcome.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Getting out of the rut

Well, it's been a whirlwind these past few days... I survived my first on-call weekend (somehow), and have been hanging out with some really awesome friends lately. Last year, it felt like I hung out with the same crowd all the time, but now I'm realizing who my real friends are. I couldn't be happier. It's the little things like that make me really glad that I'm doing so. I've purged a lot (between 30 and 35) of people on Facebook, cut contact with the negative people in my life, and have begun to focus on what it is that makes me happy.

I love helping people, don't get me wrong. Sometimes, though, I think that I expected too much of people. I may lose contact with some people, but those who I really care about, I want them to know it. So many people have changed my life, and they might not even realize it.

Before college, most of high school seemed like a rut. Get up, get ready, go to school, sit through classes, eat lunch, sit through more classes, and then go home. For 2 years, I was involved in Journalism, but senior year I quit that. Admittedly, senior year was pretty good, but I really didn't feel like it was any different.

Flash-forward to freshman year of college. I was a graphic design major. I had the freedom to do what I wanted, where I wanted, etc. I didn't have to go to every class (and I sure as hell know I didn't), I could stay up late and get up late, and there wasn't anybody to stop me... Except the exhaustion and complete disregard for what I was doing, of course. But then, I realized, I hate this major. Graphic design is not for me. I couldn't handle the pressure of 16 and 18 credit course loads. And homework, tests, quizzes, projects, art projects, essays... the list goes on.

Finally, towards the end of my freshman year, I decided I needed to do a complete turn-around. Granted, by this point it was April, and I really couldn't do anything about the turn-around then. However, I dropped my Graphic Design major, and decided that Industrial Organizational Psychology was my calling. (Eventually, I also added a Women's Studies minor, and also one in Management).

After working the summer at Chuck E. Cheese's (an adventure in and of itself), I started my sophomore year with a new major, a new set of classes, and a point to prove: this year is going to be different. I had a work study, and only 15 credits... Perfect!

I had Intro to Anthropology, Descriptive Statistics, Interviewing Skills, Intro to Earth Science, and Principles of Management. 2 major classes, 1 minor class, and 2 general education courses. Little did I know what was going to happen that first semester: I met one of my now best friends, met some other incredible people, and got really involved. A complete 360 of the previous school year.

I only missed one or two classes TOTAL that entire semester. My GPA, which had been at a lowly 2.6 (average of freshman year), boosted to a 3.13. I was ecstatic. I had gotten involved, I learned so much about myself, and I was proud of what I'd accomplished. My second semester was pretty awesome, too. Again, I got above a 3.0 GPA, took some upper level classes (2 300-levels for the second semester in a row) and did really well in them, and decided to apply to be a Community Assistant.

If someone had told me that I was going to have this job now as a Community Assistant, I probably would have scoffed. Now, I can't even imagine doing anything else, even despite what I've dealt with thus far. It has made me realize who I am, and taught me that while there's no way I can be the best, I'm going to sure as hell try.

So far, my junior year has been filled with love, hate, resentment, happiness, and so many more emotions. I've been back at school for 1 month and 13 days. I've only gone home once. But in this short amount of time, I've grown and realized who I am, what some of my goals for the future are, etc. I really don't know where I'm going still (and frankly, the future post-graduation terrifies me), but I have a better idea of what I want to do, and I've got the support system of some awesome friends, professors, and others to help me get there.

The song "Welcome to Wherever You Are," by Bon Jovi, perfectly sums up how I feel about this whole life journey (or at least that which I've come to realize in college so far):

Welcome to wherever you are
This is your life, you made it this far
Welcome, you gotta believe
That right here, right now
You're exactly where you're supposed to be
Welcome to wherever you are

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Fire Drills and Friends

Well, I figured it was time for another update.

I only had one class today, but it was still an incredibly busy day (not that every other day isn't, but today's was especially). I got up, yada yada yada, had breakfast, sat in the office for 2 hours (though I was actually quite productive for those 2 hours. I got all of the information done for my next bulletin board done!)...

Because I didn't have class, and all the other CAs were around, we had a mini staff meeting. It was pretty amusing. Our GA got two strikes, and a fellow CA got one. I got two pluses. Of course, these strikes and pluses don't really mean anything (we don't get fired if we get three strikes and stuff like that), but it was all in good fun.

So, after our mini meeting, I printed off my paper for my psych class, and then went off to class. I walked in with my friend, and we sat down. Our professor walked in a few minutes before class started... And I started laughing. Our prof's hair looked like she'd stuck a fork in an electrical outlet. Now, generally, I'm a very nice person. I get along with just about everyone (students, profs, staff, etc.), but it was all I could do to not laugh. I felt bad... But it was kinda hilarious.

But after class, I signed up to be a notetaker for one of my classes... Yes, getting paid to take notes? Could it be any easier? I think not! :D

>>Fast forward to 8:00>>

So, it's about 5 til 8. As always, Pandora is open in one tab, my email in another, and I'm flipping back and forth between an Intro to Business powerpoint and the outline I'm creating from it. (Of course, I'm also texting a few people while doing this. Being a CA teaches you great time management skills and balancing multiple things at once.)

All is going well, the music is great, and then all of a sudden, I hear this deafening squawk... the dreaded fire alarm. Okay, sure fire alarms in high school were loud, but in college... they are just so much louder. Accompany that with strobelight-like lights flashing everywhere. Yup, college fire drills are a madhouse.

Also, keep in mind, usually my res hall director and/or Public Safety (our campus police officers) will let us know a day or two in advance that we're having a fire drill. This one...? Definitely not announced.

Good thing I already had my shoes still on. I grabbed my keys and cell phone, and skurried out the front door. My res hall director was already out there, as were 2 of my fellow CAs. A Public Safety officer and our fire safety guy (I don't remember his exact title) were also there.

After I got out there, my RD handed me a key, and told me to go check the 3rd floor for any residents who didn't get out yet (it was just a drill). I go back into the building, push through a ton of people on the stairs going out (who were wondering what the hell I was doing), and then finally got to the third floor. I took about 7 seconds a room (3 of which were getting the door open. The master key was a little persnickety.

I didn't find any residents or items of interest in my quick peek in... except for a blow up doll in one room that made me of Quagmire from Family Guy.

But anywho... After my fire drill, I got a text from a friend asking if he could print stuff in my res hall, so I said sure. I always love catching up with friends. We BS'd for a while, cracked some jokes about the most random of topics, discussed some cherry flavored alcohol that I think sounds repulsive, and the nastiness that is Chef Boyardee. Haha.

So, that was my Wednesday. It's now 12:56 AM on Thursday. Sad to say, this is the latest I think I've stayed up all week. I crashed around 11 last night.

But now, in the words of John Lennon (whose killer was denied parole AGAIN the other day ... yay!),

Now it's time to say good night/Good night Sleep tight/Now the sun turns out his light/Good night Sleep tight/Dream sweet dreams for me/Dream sweet dreams for you.

Close your eyes and I'll close mine/Good night Sleep tight/Now the moon begins to shine/Good night Sleep tight/Dream sweet dreams for me/Dream sweet dreams for you.

Close your eyes and I'll close mine/Good night Sleep tight/Now the sun turns out his light/Good night Sleep tight/Dream sweet dreams for me/Dream sweet dreams for you.

Good night Good night Everybody/Everybody everywhere/Good night.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

2010 Emmys

Well, on July 8, the day the Emmy award nominations went live, I chose my winners. Of course, like those Americans not watching the Pittsburgh Steelers game, I watched the Emmys. Granted, it was in bits and pieces because of being on call, but alas, I won some and lost some. So these are my picks, the actual winners, and a few rants and raves along the way. Buckle your seatbelts and click your helmets, because here we go.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
My Vote: Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory
Winner: Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory
Rant/Rave: I can't complain about this one. I adore Jim Parsons, and he's absolutely fabulous on The Big Bang Theory

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
My Vote: Toni Collette, United States of Tara
Winner: Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie
Rant/Rave: Granted, I've never seen either of these shows, I'm just a fan of Toni Collette

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
My Vote: Matthew Fox, Lost
Winner: Ryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Rant/Rave: My friend Shane put it best, "I was rooting for [Michael] Emerson. His acting is awesome. FUCK BREAKING BAD."

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
My Vote: Mariska Hargitay, Law and Order: Special Victims Unit
Winner: Kyra Sedgwick, The Closer
Rant/Rave: Uh, WTF. Mariska always wins for this in my book, hands down.

Outstanding Comedy Series
My Vote: Modern Family
Winner: Modern Family
Rant/Rave: Before you ask, I didn't vote for Glee because I don't classify it as a comedy.

Outstanding Drama Series
My Vote: Lost
Winner: Mad Men
Rant/Rave: In June, a friend recommended Lost to me. I'd only seen the first episode until then... Well, suffice to say, I finished fifty-three episodes in a period of a month. However, I'm slipping because I'm only on episode 3.10, because I wanted to rewatch episodes 3.08-3.10 before I continued. (Subsequent blog posts about Lost will occur, I'm sure) ... And, of course, Lost should have won. Grr.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie: Al Pacino, You Don't Know Jack
- Well, what is there to say? I didn't see this (due to the fact I don't have HBO), though, from the previews, it looks intriguing. I also don't think that Pacino was expecting to win because his speech was sort of shaky.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or Movie: Claire Danes, Temple Grandin
- I've read some of Dr. Grandin's work, and I find Danes to be a multi-faceted actress, so this role seemed to suit her. Again, it was on HBO, which means I'll have to rent the movie.

Outstanding Made for Television Movie: Temple Grandin
- Wow. TG is cleaning up. And I have no idea who gave the acceptance speech, but it was absolutely fabulous. And, yes, happy birthday, Temple!

Some other side notes...
- Because I was on a round, I didn't see the montage of shows that ended. And from what I've been told, it was a good thing because it reveals 3 essential season 6 plot pillars for Lost.
- Betty White is still the epitome of awesome. She totally deserved the win for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series.
- Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series went to Neil Patrick Harris for Glee. I like NPH, and I'm a casual fan of Glee... But I still don't see how it's a comedy series. It's really a mix of genres.
- Outanding Commercial went to "The Man Your Man Could Smell Like: Old Spice Body Wash." All I'm going to say is that if you've noot seen this commercial, you need to YouTube it right now. (And as always, I'm verbing nouns)
- I guess Lost did win one award. But only one is really depressing.

...And thus concludes my rants and raves. Thoughts?

Comments = always welcome.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The freshmen are coming! The freshmen are coming!

Well, today was freshmen move-in day. What a day.

I helped people find parking spots, told people they had 15 minutes to unload their vehicles (much to their dismay), and saw hordes of pink, purple, green, blue, orange, and every other color imaginable unloaded. The price of Ramen stock must do really, really well during this time of year.

I saw fridges that were at least 3x time the size of mine, toasters that I told people weren't allowed, and people carrying in more pairs of shoes than I have on campus.

It was an experience to say the very least. I can't imagine what my res hall's trash rooms look like right now, and honestly, I'm a little terrified. Granted, it's insane during move-out as well, but who knows right now. I may venture down a little later.

I also got to experience my first Detex alarm. Of course, being a newbie, I had no idea what to do. So, I called Public Safety. The receptionist there explained to me what to do. (Turn the master key until it goes off). And for those of you who don't know what a Detex alarm is... Well, be glad. It's the alarm that goes off when somebody goes out the door that is clearly marked "Emergency Exit Only." It's a really whiney, annoying alarm. Not fun.

But the receptionist was awesome, and I actually went down afterwards to thank her. (Well, that and she wanted my cell phone number in case something would happen in the future).

Now all that's left is to have a few more people move in sporadically over the weekend, and classes start Monday. I'm having my first floor meeting on Wednesday, and hoping it goes well. I sent all of my residents an e-mail about it, and there will be signage.

Like I've told a few people, if someone had told me 3 years ago that I'd be in this position, I would have honestly scoffed at the thought and laughed in their face. However, now that I've gone through training, had some frank conversations with a friend about the job and his advice for it, I can't imagine not doing this. It's already taught me so much about myself... And I'm so excited to learn more.

A new chapter of my life is being written, and I for one, can't wait to see what happens. It sort of feels like a choose-your-own adventure book, the only difference being I'm both a character and the author in a sense.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

CA Training

Wow. These last (almost) 2 weeks have been incredible. I have learned so much, met some amazing new people, and had so much fun.

Even though it's been ridiculously busy each day, between training, a summer class (which is over now, but even still), homework assignments, working on bulletin boards and door tags, etc.; it's been completely worth it.

If someone had told me three years ago that I would be in this position, I honestly would have laughed in their face and wouldn't have given it a second thought.

However, now my first bulletin board is done and ready to be hung, but I have to present it to a group of my school's university Orientation Leaders before that can occur. In the meanwhile, I have to do all of the following:

- Clean my dorm room
- Do all of my laundry
- Finish cutting out door tags
- Print surveys and some other paperwork
- Organize paperwork
- Do room condition reports
- Hang up informational bulletin boards
- Present bulletin board
- Hang up other bulletin board
- Organize desk
- Post schedule
- Create September calendar of events and print

...Oh, yes, and the essentials: Eat. Sleep. Breathe.

Well, here goes nothing, I guess. Let's see what I can accomplish by this time tomorrow.