Bad Day

I’m sad and hurt, but mostly I just feel incredibly stupid.

I had a plan.

Now all I see is smog.

Zombie walking through life.

I don’t feel much,

Except for a sinking feeling in my chest.

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Reality Television

This evening, I sat down to watch television with my family. As usual, nobody could agree on anything. Ben, my brother, refused to do anything family related as he has recently joined the joy-hating teenager’s society and my Dad would only agree to cheesy sitcoms and low budget action movies. Finally, after the boys stormed out in frustration, Mom and I chose one of the few genres we could agree on: reality television. We settled into couch pillows and fuzzy blankets and started a random episode of Cupcake Wars.

This show involves three teams of aspiring bakers making thousands of cupcakes with weirdly specific themes and ingredients, but one of the most entertaining aspects of the show is the judging panel. Firstly, there’s the basic white chick, Candace Nelson. She says posh, complimentary things about literally every cupcake no matter how mushy or unattractive. Secondly there’s Florian Bellanger the snooty, anal-retentive French chef. He talks as if he had a small fish in the side of his mouth and his lazy accent makes fun of itself. Every critique sounds as if he takes out a thesaurus and uses fifty different synonyms for the word horrendous.

Though I know nothing about baking, or cupcake aesthetics, after a few episodes, I develop an opinion. It’s kind of funny actually. I will lean over to my mom and say things like, “That buttercream is too dense! I can’t believe Felicity just ruined that entire batch of cupcakes!” even though I have pretty much no clue about what I’m talking about.

Let’s all just be honest: judging people is fun! If you think you’re life is a mess, just watch The Bachelor! That’s why shows like Jersey Shore and Sister Wives exist: to make us feel like better people. Maybe I have a crappy job and no friends, but at least my hair doesn’t look like a greasy porcupine. Even if I have no money and no significant other, at least I’m not living in a house with my husband, his six other wives, and their nasty children. So…basically I consider reality television, along with copious amounts of ice cream, is a great coping skill for most people’s first world problems. Happy viewing!

Let Them Eat Cake

If I could be anyone from any group we studied this year I would probably choose to be a lady in Queen Marie Antoinette’s court. She seems like quite a comical kind of person to be around, and being rich and well-fed would definitely be a plus for me.  I like France in general. That time period, however, is one of my favorites due to the luxuries afforded to the royalty. I like the copious amount of sweets and treats and the huge, over the top dresses, hats, and costumes. life without a job, just lazily wandering around a palace listening to opera music and playing poker, to me seems like a very different and fun experience. Although that time in history lead to a rather violent war ( the french revolution ) I feel that the years before this occurred would be quite blissful and peaceful for a lady with royal blood. I would probably have my own mansion and a little pet Yorkshire Terrier just for fun. It would probably even be exciting to see King Louis VII helping out the American libertarians in the American revolution. In fact I would probably feel that the American way of simplistic life was actually cute and funny. I would even visit Marie Antoinette’s little garden house in Versaille and help with her garden and take care of her children. Life in the palace would be luxurious! The ceiling would be many, many feet higher than was necessary and everything would be decadent and trimmed in gold. even clothing would be very lavish and expensive. In fact, Marie Antoinette had her very own stylists and would import different textiles, feathers, shoes, from all over the world just to have her own custom wardrobe. this would be a paradise for me considering I love all things beauty and fashion ( especially shoes ). This is why I would like to be a lady in her court.

The Strong Cowgirl

The subject of the following article will remain anonymous for her own safety and sanity. This hardworking horse lover has been through hard times. Her family is a mess: her dad has rheumatoid arthritis which limits his movement rendering him incapable of taking care of her or her younger brother, and her mother is an undiagnosed bipolar-psychotic. Okay psychotic might be an exaggeration, but she is certainly bipolar. Both of them fight constantly. So this brave 17-year-old is left parenting her younger brother. She makes dinner, cleans dishes, pays for her own food and clothes, and on top of that she has to work at the barn in order to pay for her horse’s board. As far as boyfriend’s go, she has somehow managed to find the worst. From emotional manipulators, to disrespectful, immature little boys she has had the best intentions and the worst luck. It makes it harder for her to show her emotions and open her heart to others.

 

Drama is usually part of the horse-barn lifestyle and this girl’s life is no exception. She is a straightforward, honest person who doesn’t deal with other people’s crap, yet somehow she gets caught up in the most over-the-top situations you can imagine. When she fell in love with a beautiful palomino horse, the owner threatened to take it away from her on numerous occasions. After spending almost a month in the hospital due to a bone cyst in her lower leg, she came home to find that she had been replaced at work. Once she was finally given enough shifts to pay for the procedures her horse needed, she was told that she would no longer be paid for her work at the barn.

 

Being an emotional person myself, it is hard to see her go through all of this crap. Whether she’s grumpy and yelling or heartbroken, frustrated, and crying, I only wish I could do something to make it better.
I, however, have really high hopes for her future. I believe that if you start at the bottom you can only go up. She is a fantastic, hardworking student, a prizewinning, horse-riding, athlete, and a talented caring person. I proud to call her my friend.

Dresscode

A boy walks down the crowded Keene High hallway. He sees girls all around him. He sees short girls, tall girls, skinny girls, and curvy girls. Some have big butts, others have little ones. Some girls let their tatas hang out of their shirts and others keep the wrapped underneath inches of fabric. The boy ogles them all. It’s not his fault that he was raised in a generation where female bodies are simply sexual objects. Despite these other features, he is particularly attracted to…their shoulders. He can not help it; the smooth skin that curved into their backs drive him wild. Ah shoulders! Why are these girls allowed to walk around with their shoulders showing? It’s awfully distracting to the poor, hormone-crazed boy. Unfortunately for the school board and paranoid parents of the century, this is not how the teenage brain thinks. Those who enforce the no spaghetti strap rule convince themselves that this story is true when it is just silly. Even if a girl wears a burka, boys who sexualize girl’s bodies will simply undress them in their mind. If what a female student is wearing is such a concerning problem for male’s concentration, then we should be focusing on teaching boys to respect women for the mind and not their body.


These days you can’t turn on the television without seeing a clothing as showing up a girl’s skirt, or a show where a guy is talking about what a girl’s body looks. Derogatory words such a “hot”  and “smokin'” are now supposed to be received as compliments. Why does “sex sell”? Because we let it. We make sex sell. That is what the media is teaching children. Video games for 9 year old boys like Tomb Raider or GTA have overly sexual and glamorized women flouncing around or waiting to be saved.


The only way to undo the damage that social media and television have done on the boys of this generation is to re-educate men and boys entirely on the dynamic between men and women. If Parents taught their sons to respect women from the day they were born, the world would be a world of justice. If adults would stop assuming that girls are a distraction to boys and convincing themselves. The media should stop portraying women as sexual objects and instead demonstrate their many accomplishments.


In a perfect world boys would grow up learning about the great thoughts and accomplishments of women and there would be no need for girls to conceal their bodies. Is it really necessary to have such a strict dress code when boys are already being submitted to much worse images of women in their own homes? Boys and dress codes are not the problem. How we educate our boys is.

Varsity

The name of the subject in this article will remain anonymous for now because for some reason, I feel more comfortable being vague and mysterious.
This 6’ 7’’ Ariana Grande loving 18 year old boy is a rare breed. He is kinder than you would expect out of a varsity basket-ball player but, then again, a lot of things about him surprised me.

He always wakes up at five in the morning no matter what day of the week it is. On weekends he goes fishing. He isn’t the best at this sport, but it is the one thing that relaxes him. When he goes fishing he doesn’t have to think about his fear of heights, his plummeting grades, or his emotionally abusive basketball coach. He can just sit in his little rowboat and enjoy the silence.

For four long years he’s played basketball on the school’s team. He worked his way from a long legged, uncoordinated freshmen to a confident, ball dunking, varsity player. His friends are what keep him going. Without them, he would never have put up with his coach for this long. At least he knows what he never wants to grow up to be. Coach is insane. Coach throws tantrums, puts down the team, and belittles every single accomplishment.

Anxiety for this young man is a huge obstacle. He hates trying new things. He knows it should be fun and exciting, but he dreads the unexpected. He worries that he will fail in front of all of the people he’s trying to impress. In this aspect I can relate completely.

In all reality, he is a chill, generally nice guy, but he can’t see that. Everybody else sees the great in him. It’s almost hypocritical for me to write that, considering my similar situation, but I feel as if, being the judgmental person I am, I can see myself objectively and know for a fact that I have no assets. I wonder if that’s how he feels?