Treasure

Our Guest Speaker Treasure Shields Redmond was the first poet I’ve ever seen perform live.  I’ve always enjoyed poetry, from a distance  I can honestly say that the difference between reading poetry and hearing poetry is like the difference between an O’Douls and a Budweiser…..something just not right…something’s missing.  Treasure gave a riveting performance that touched the entire spectrum of emotion.  She drew inspiration from her past, her friends, her family, and all those life experiences that makes art stand out.  She wasn’t afraid to let the audience in her past both the negative and the positive aspects.  Connecting with the speaker while their performing is vital to appreciating their work, and Treasure delivered that connection on a silver platter.  I like how she constantly ask the audiences feedback.  This allowed for multiple interpretation while maintaining the central message or theme.  I hope to hear another reading from her and from now on I” try and shorten that distance between me and poetry

Story of my Life

As a freshmen in college is difficult for some students to grasp. Studying, homework, projects, and having a job has become the most challenging parts of college for some students. Have any of you experienced death or other tragic situations during your college stay?

I have learned how to take on difficult family situations and still successfully make the dean’s list in school. May 15, 2011 my best friend Ariel died in a horrific car crash. Receiving a heart racing phone call from my family tore my heart into pieces. I left school the weekend before finals but that was the last thing on my mind. I returned back to school a few days later and took all four of my finals in one day. It was a blessing that my professors took time to let me take them. Returning back to Raleigh, NC the next day for the funeral put a enormous weight on my shoulders. In the end I passed each final with a 90 or better!

April 30, 2012 another challenge crept into my life. My mother was registered to Georgetown Hospital for brain surgery. She was diagnosed with Chiari Malformation. This type of disease is a skull and brain disease. it causes major headaches, fatigue, difficulty swallowing, dizziness, and nausea. Finding out that your mother has to have major surgery such as brain surgery is very terrifying. Finding out information such as this and preparing for finals was very hard. But I was able to come back to school and pick up where I left off. I am back to my daily routine and my mom is recovering very well.

Overall, I have been faced with difficult challenges during college. I have been able to pray and thank God for getting me through my hard times. If you are dealing with similar situations remember that your family comes first but it is possible to get your work done. Something that has always stayed with me during hardships is, “Don’t stress over things that you have no control over.”

summer, SuMMer, SUMMERTIMEE!!!

I just want to wish everyone an amazing summer!! :) Have fun, live life, and most importantly be free to be yourself!!

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It all starts with….

Unassuming, unselfish, and carefree, emotions carry us through our daily lives in no particular order. When it’s time to be called to the front line, they excuse themselves through the crowd and make an appearance like no other. I believe that in order to truly understand society and issues, one must be able to reciprocate emotion. It does not matter which emotion it is.

No matter what level you are on in life, without emotional connection it will be hard to fully sympathize and understand many things. I always try to make myself aware of new people and try to get to know as many different people as I can. This does not necessarily mean that everyone has to be outgoing like I am, but it will benefit to at least bond with people who are similar to yourself.

It seems that the American culture is the harsh critic when it comes to acceptance of new things. Researching and examining other countries, many will come to the conclusion that we are the bullies of world! The American Culture seems to be way stricter than other cultures throughout the world. When we visit other countries, many times we are greeted with open arms and the people of that society are ready to teach us their ways.

The reigning champion of emotion has always been love. Many refer to it as a game that cannot be won. Some ask how can one beat a game that has no rules. When we feel that love has been presented to us, our whole worlds start to change. Love has a Webster definition, but the heart defines it how it wants.

No two relationships can be the same because people love and see love differently. Examine relationships around you. You may soon begin to ask yourself questions like, “What are they doing together?”, or “How are they able to love so hard?” Now look at yourself. Have you ever witnessed something so amazing that you don’t even know how to exactly explain it? Feeling this for another person can sometimes be scary and even life changing. This is why some people try to stay away from it because fear overtakes their mind and soul. We have to learn to overcome fear and run towards it.

There is no way of ever knowing if someone or something is the right choice for you. Life is all about risks and sometimes you have to take chances especially when it comes to something that you believe in. Make a small change to your daily routine and see how you feel. Remember this; Time decides who you will meet in life. Your heart decides who you want in life. Your behavior decides who you will stay in life. It all starts with an emotion. 

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Materialism and how it’s captivated today’s civilization.

By: Latetra Ray

It was once said, “It is useless to shout to the drowning moneylender “ Give me your hand !” He does not know how to give. Instead, shout: “ Take my hand !” and he will clutch at it.”  The quote is the epitome of the mentality of today’s culture and how people are extremely overwhelmed with consumption. One would much rather accept than to offer because they are preoccupied with the thought of staying current with fashion trends, gossip, and celebrities.  It is evident that the priorities of Americans have changed drastically; it is often bound up with a value system which regards social status as being determined by affluence as well as the perception that happiness can be increased through buying, spending and accumulating material wealth.

People are passionate about different things throughout their lifetime. Some care about fame, more care about money and few care about value. I feel that I am a part of the same percentage that is passionate about value. I would say this because I value a lot of important things with substance and fame and fortune are none of them. I value family, friends, love; things that can help me have a joyful life.  Of course money is helpful sometimes but it doesn’t necessarily bring happiness. Money comes and goes but love, happiness and family will always remain.

Over the years the percentage of people who yearn for materialistic things such as money, cars and clothes have overwhelmingly increased from wanting more important things with substance like family, friends and love. Materialism is the excessive desire to consume and acquire material goods.  This is a sad case because in this day and time everyone wants to copy the same thing that the celebrities does. They see a celebrity wearing an expensive name brand or see them driving a certain car and automatically go to purchase the item, no questions asked. But when asked to spend some quality time with family or a spouse they don’t have an interest.

America has definitely changed and it seems like there is no sense in saving it. Today’s adolescents no longer has an interest in anything but being the most trendiest or the one who’s dressed more like a celebrity.

“I find it very hard to believe that most people can’t distinguish their morality for happiness from the simplicity of what everyone is doing today, it’s sickening” was what London R. had to say when I asked her what her views were on today’s obsessing over material things.

Paul S. stated his reasoning for being materialistic, “In today’s world you have to go with the flow and stay on top of those things in order to be accepted.”

Regardless of what my favorite celebrity is wearing or wondering if I’ll be accepted by my peers, I’ll stick to my ethical morals and continuously value family, love and happiness before I ever think about turning into the materialistic robot that half of this society has become.

Ceremy by Leslie Marmon Silko

In this somber, yet hopeful novel, the difficulties of a war veteran returning to normal life are brought in as a theme that has proved to be a rich theme for the reader. So many people, over the last hundred years, have had family members who returned from war or have themselves come back from the horrors of the battlefields. There is something within us that seeks to understand the full magnitude of what is lost when life and limb become so many strategic points on a general’s battle plan.

Leslie Marmon Silko’s novel, Ceremony, takes a semi-ordinary story of a young man returning from Japan during World War II and spins it in a different direction. What happens when the military uniform is stripped and one returns from a war overseas just to go back to the horrors of being known as a “mixed blood” or “filthy Indian”?

“First time you walked down the street in Gallup or Albuquerque, you knew. Don’t lie. You knew right away. The war was over, the uniform was gone. All of a sudden that man at the store waits on you last, makes you wait until all the white people bought what they wanted.”

 Tayo has returned from Japan and is suffering from what we now call post-traumatic stress disorder. During the war, the death all around could not have been easy to understand, nor simple to partake in. Not only that, but the hostility of his Native American Indian family members, who distrust him because he is not fully theirs, and the whites, who only like Tayo when he is wearing his uniform. One of the novel’s main themes is dealing with the Native Americans’ grief, who, after serving their country in World War II, assumed that their equality and the respect they were receiving would last beyond the last shot fired. It surely did not, and what was left? The feeling of finally belonging did not last for these returning Native American soldiers.

Another aspect is the land where Tayo lives. To begin with, he has only a small level of appreciation for the stories and mysteries embedded within the landscapes where he resides. The writing is focused internally, through memories and thoughts but later, as Tayo comes to learn more about his heritage, written so beautifully through many different song-poems that capture and reveal ancient Native American stories, the land itself becomes not a character but almost the entire force of the novel. Silko’s writing astonishes the reader when she writes of the beautiful artistic sceneries, but her skill could also just as easily be overlooked.

  “The mountain had been named for the swirling veils of clouds, the membranes of foggy mist clinging to the peaks, then leaving them covered with snow. This morning the mountain was dusted with snow, and the blue-gray clouds were unwinding from the peaks.” One of the major goals of the novel is bringing out the beauty of the setting, and that she did.

Tayo’s alcoholism was something of a shame in this novel. The disorder was very believable, especially for his descent and the way he was treated in and out of war, but it almost hinders the book because of the almost disinterest the reader may feel when reading these sections. While Tayo falling into this disease was right for the novel and Tayo’s personality, some parts of the novel were hard to follow and drew me out of it. Thankfully, the missteps are brief, and the most important parts of the novel shine the brightest.

Silko’s writing is majestical and physical, and she never falls short of beautiful descriptions, even when they almost seem unnecessary.

“Tiny black ants were scurrying over the shattered melons; the flies were rubbing their feet on fragments of pulp and rind. He trampled the ants with his boots, and he kicked dirt over the seeds and pulp.”

Again, we can almost taste the melon, can clearly and distinctly picture the poor ants.

Ceremony seems to be a great piece of native American Indian writing. Silko’s novel rises above what could be referred to as “minority fiction,” because it is important that it was written by a minority group. There is no chance of being disappointed by this novel because of the author’s distinctive passion for her subject and her skill of writing in general.

Think Like a Man Movie Review

On May 9, 2012 the highly anticipated movie Think Like a Man hit theaters and shows sold out immediately. The movie, based off of Steve Harveys best-selling book, “Act Like a Lady. Think Like a Man”, follows the lives of four men who are all connected. Each of their lives are suddenly shaken up when their women discover the book and decide to incorporate it in the relationships. One day the men are watching TV and learn about the book. They feel as though Steve Harvey has betrayed his own kind, but they try to flip the scripts on the ladies and use the wisdom from the book themselves.

The cast is made up of attractive talented actors – Meagan Goode, Michael Ealy, Kevin Hart, Taraji P. Henson, and Reginal Hall – just to name a few. Each story was perfectly formatted and each cast member new when to deliver the perfect punch line.

Ann Hornaday from the Washington Post writes “Focus on the pleasures of watching a group of gifted actors spar and seduce each other with genuine warmth, and ‘Think Like a Man’ just might go straight to your head.” Elizabeth Weitzman adds “Every primary cast member is appealing, elevating the disposable plot — men and women are in constant battle, yawn — into a funny, sexy take on contemporary dating.

The movie stayed number one for two consecutive weekends and bought in $18 million, bringing its 10 day total to $60.9 million!! I went to see the movie on the second weekend and it was still rammed packed. It was a great movie that appealed to every type of relationship. Overall I enjoyed the movie and it made me look at the role I play in relationships a little more closely.

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