LOVE POEM #7 – THE DEAD OF NIGHT

She walked down the hall

Dressed in purple-blue night robes

In the dead of night.

 

The door was askew,

With a dim light flickering

To keep the room lit.

 

She snuffed the candles,

And faded into the dark,

Flooded by moonlight.

 

Her gaze was caught then,

And she turned to the window,

With a Cheshire grin.

 

She drew them open,

Embraced by his cool night breeze,

And she felt quite warm.

MEETING NEW PEOPLE

Hello everyone,

 

I hope everyone is having a good day. Work has me really busy today so I don’t have much time to write, so if this is cut a bit short I apologize. Today I wanted to talk about how we interact with new people. New people are always an interesting subject, and in all honesty, I bet we act differently with new people based on the circumstances of how we met those people.

What exactly does that mean? Well, basically, I mean that how we meet and view people changes on the context. You will probably greet someone that you meet at a business meeting for the first time differently than you greet someone at, say, your little brother’s birthday party. These differences change how we talk, act, and even hold our self-esteem. Imagine being introduced to Bill Gates at a business party. Wouldn’t you be intimidated, perhaps even a little shy? Now think about meeting little Louie’s aunt Agnes. Suddenly not so scared or shy, right?

These situations alter how we perceive ourselves and how we perceive others. Let’s take the romantic standpoint. Let’s say you’re a person who likes meeting people whom you wish to date under relaxed, no business like settings. Do you think you could make an acquaintance and foster a relationship with someone you met at your law firm? Probably not, right?

There also is the aspect of our selves. You know who you are, right? But does your coworker? What about the new guy at the restaurant you go to every week on Fridays? When you interact with each of these people, are you indeed the same person? My answer is no, you probably act enough like a different person that you are perceived differently. I made a new friend under circumstances I had never dealt with before, and apparently I came off conceited to the point where she thought I was a Trump supporter. Which, to make very clear, I am not in the slightest.

But that’s interesting, isn’t it? Most people who meet me when I am with friends or family recognize me as a pretty progressive person, though with a level enough head to pause and try to at least understand the perspective of people who are more conservative. What does that say about how we view and judge others? What does that say about the way that we hold ourselves up based on different pre-existing circumstances? What do you think? Am I right? Is it more complicated than that? Let me know!

THE JOURNEY OF A BEARD

A beard is like an age old friend;

One both constant yet forgotten.

Mine own shades himself like autumn;

Brown with reds to speckle and blend.
And yet, he is also like me.

Once, he was a spry and young thing,

Until life showed what it had to bring.

Now we all know what he can be.
But there is still time for a change.

Shaved, he can be reborn anew,

To show the world what he can do;

Prove nothing to be out of range.
Or, he can sit around and gray,

And watch his strength begin to wane.

To fester his own life’s disdain.

Until white winter comes to say:
“Let me take these hard years from you.

No more kin, and much less than kind.

With me, on your journey you’ll find

The sleep you’ve wished for to be true”
A good friend would not let this pass,

He would grasp the bristles of life,

Like a beard in moments of strife,

And show he had more line to cast.

 

Hello everyone,

 

I recently became able to grow a (small) beard, and my mother challenged me to write a poem about it. So I did. Let me know what you think! It’s a little weird, I know.

THE FIRST GREAT DEBATE

Hello everyone,

 

What an interesting time we live in! Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton debating for the candidacy. I feel like if you went back 20 years, this would be hard to believe. I mean really, Donald Trump? That liberal minded-wait, what? He’s a Republican? Wasn’t he pro LGBTQ and pro-choice for a while? Didn’t he say on camera that we had to increase wages? You’re telling me he’s not saying those things anymore? What happened?

And then there’s Hillary Clinton. 20 years ago, she was aspiring toward politics and her husband was coming up on his own election as president. And here we are. Of course, not everything about Hillary’s career has been great-people knock her for her use of a server in emails, and she has changed positions on several policies over the course of history. She backed NAFTA, which according to many experts has been a major failure. She also initially backed the TPP movement.

That being said, on the debate stage last night, we saw two very different people. At least, that’s how it started. Hillary was focused, expressive, and composed. Trump started out this way too. He even had some good argumentation in regard to trade. His points about taxation of companies matches tariffs that the United States has done in the past. However, as the debate wore on, it became clear that experience outmatched explosiveness.

Trump’s emotional bravado was shut down by Hillary’s hard use of factual information. She presented policy after policy with enough detail to be legitimate, yet not so much that it was hard to comprehend. Constant interruptions by Trump made him look more a child bully than a man ready to run the country.

Regardless of your political opinion, it’s hard to believe Trump was ready for the scale of the debate last night. I mean, the guy turned to calling Hillary’s argument “all words” at one point. Can’t the same be said about his own speech? What does he really get done? Hillary’s composure was undeniable, which was incredible. Sure, sometimes she sounded a bit mechanical, but I’d take a woman who was practiced and firm enough over this character that struggled to stay on topic. And of course, Hillary was not always on topic either-that’s a classic political fault of every president. But her ability to bring things back and eventually come around to the question at hand was unparalleled by her opponent.

Trump’s answer to a race question, purposely pointed at Black Lives Matter movements and police struggles, was turned into a foreign policy answer about eliminating ISIS, and an attack on Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama’s “weakness” in this area. Is this really the person we want running our country? One who “agrees with Hillary” about unification, and yet presses divisive rhetoric and avoids relatively simple questions about racial injustice?

All this in mind, I would say that Hillary pretty clearly won the debate last night. If you didn’t watch it, I highly recommend checking it out. It was surprisingly easy to watch, which was not something I can say about all debates. What do you think? Did Hillary win? Is my analysis fair? Let me know!

REAL RESPECT

Hello everyone,

 

I’ve been debating what to write about today, and while I was thinking about writing about heroes and battles because I am reading Beowulf, I decided the instead talk about respect. Now, as you know, 2016 is an interesting time in life. I, myself, am a cool 21 years old and have really just gotten the hang of knowing things…sort of. Anyway, respect is something that I hear thrown a lot today, and it really is hard for me to understand where people are coming from.

Let’s take the Trump campaign (an ever wild ride). People are saying that it’s their right for us to respect their opinion, or that we are being disrespectful by not condoning their bigoted statements because they are entitled to them. And that’s actually well and true—they are allow to say all these things, and in some ways it is disrespectful to disagree with them. However, it is also true that disagreeing with their opinions is also a right, and by saying we shouldn’t do so, they have created the same argument for us which they used to protect themselves. So that doesn’t really work.

Now let’s tackle respect for the flag. A symbol of the nation. By not standing during the national anthem, Colin Kaepernick challenged the idea that we must always respect the symbol of our nation. And he’s within his rights to do so. Peaceful protest is protected by the nation, and to say that it should not be done is simple minded. Nations fall and rise over the course of history, like everything. I guarantee you the party of Lincoln is vastly different today than it was when he was alive. Everyone remember the USSR? What about the great Roman Empire? The idea of a nation is a human construct, just like our rights. That being said, our rights are a positive construct, while a nation is always debatable. Kaepernick believes that our nation currently isn’t a positive construct, because it does not treat all people equally. And in all honesty, he’s right.

So the claim that he’s being disrespectful to our nation comes under the assumption that our nation always deserves respect. And it doesn’t. Respect is a human construct to preserve alliances and avoid violence. But it is only earned mutually. A person cannot say “you must respect me” and then spit all over you. Or rather, they can say it, but you will not harbor any respect for them. So this claim by conservatives makes no sense. Why would Kaepernick respect a country that has shown time and again that it does not respect him, or the idea he is representing?

Faith. That’s such an unfair argument. To “have faith” that these people will not treat him wrong, when statistics are in favor of the white man. I think, in all honesty, that I would take the one theme throughout history over a single nation’s measly 230 odd years. And that theme is being human. Black lives aren’t being treated as other human lives are being treated. They deserve that respect. Some people are claiming that they are being disrespected by the Black Lives Matter protesters because it’s anti-American. Well if it’s anti-American to claim human rights, is the problem the people, or the country’s standards? Ask yourselves that, conservatives on this issue, and realize where you stand on the side of real respect.

What do you think? Am I totally wrong? Are my points valid but need a better structure? Let me know!

LOVE POEM #6 – CAUGHT CHEATING

Shut up! Just shut the fuck up! Please!

Me? How about you quiet down?

You think I can drop all your sleaze?

I just don’t want to wake the town.

 

Oooo look at you, Mr. Saint man.

Oh, I’m Mr. Saint, Mrs. Devil?

Devil? Have a taste of this pan!

Ow! Fuck, take it down a level.

 

After I saw you with some whore?

I don’t know what you think you seen.

I think I seen her screaming more.

Juno, don’t give me that routine.

 

Routine? You think I’m bluffing shit?

That ‘cause I’m your girl I’ll submit?

Get your ass outta here right quick,

Or who knows what sins I’ll commit!

 

 

Hello everyone,

 

Trying to get back in the habit of these poems while making them different is tough. I hope this poem isn’t too corny, but I was trying to imagine someone reacting to them catching their spouse cheating, but rather than react with sadness, react with anger. Something I myself have trouble doing. I also attempted to add a dialogue between the characters. Let me know what you think! Or if you have any ideas on how it could be done better!

PARKING SUCKS!

Hello everyone,

 

Alright, I don’t have much time to write so I’ll try to make this quick! Today is the first day of hopefully my last year as an undergrad at Cal Poly Pomona. Which is super cool. That being said, through my first three years of college I’ve learned a lot about the problems with this campus. The worst of the worst is parking. Which is something I’d like to talk about today a little bit.

Now, if you’ve never been to Cal Poly Pomona, you may be like “parking sucks everywhere, why does it matter so much at this school?” And that’s totally fine, because I’m writing about this to enlighten everyone to ways to improve parking problems. First and foremost, I need to explain the situation. Parking costs $134.00 per quarter. Which is pretty steep. $402.00 per year just to park in the designated parking on campus is not very affordable (not including summer parking). And Cal Poly has some 20,000+ students. Maybe more. Do the math. That’s over $8 Million per year. And sure, we need to pay for people who work here, but according to my discussion with the parking department, they are a separate entity from the school…so this $8 million doesn’t go directly to school funding…I’m not sure how many people work there in the parking services, police department, and so on, but I have to feel like $8 million is more than enough to cover costs. Even if everyone had $100,000.00 salaries, I can’t imagine one school needing 80 people working in parking. But people certainly don’t have that kind of a salary.

So…where does this money go? Well, as noticed this year, Cal Poly just got a second parking structure. Suddenly that money makes a lot more sense. It costs quite a bit to build a nice parking structure. Though the whole need for another parking structure arose because A) so many people attend Cal Poly and B) because the staff lot had to be demolished due to poor architectural planning on another building on campus.

Basically…there was a cluster of bad choices. But the worst is that all this new parking to accommodate people has left the campus’s “good” parking to be a full 15 minute walk away from most buildings. Not to mention traffic is hell on campus. I left at 9:15 for my class today, which started at 10:00. It takes between 5 and 10 minutes to get off the 10 freeway at Kellogg avenue, based on where I live. I was late to class. And I’m seasoned at this, so I knew not to look for “good” parking, and instead just drive straight to wherever nobody would think to have parked—the brand new parking structure. Which is maybe a 3 mile drive from the exit, since it winds around. That took me a solid 30 minutes to travel. Why? Because there’s no space! There’s a one and occasionally two lane road all the way through, littered with terribly placed stop light, which are on terrible timers. When one person has to turn left, and it’s a one lane road, traffic backs up forever. This is so poorly planned.

But who suffers through it? Students. And nobody cares about students. So do I expect a change? No. Which I think is unfair. What do you think? Let me know!

SIX MONTHS IN

Hello everyone,

Wow! I was just reviewing some statistics on WordPress, and I noticed that it’s been exactly six months from when I first posted a blog entry on this website. Since then, I’ve done a lot. I’ve written 5 posts per week, every week, for 6 months. Thats like 120+ posts. Can you believe that? That being said, I still feel like I’ve got a long ways to go before I reach my goals for this blog.

Goals are such a tough thing to achieve sometimes. Think about every goal you have ever had. How many of those goals did you actually follow through with? Especially long term goals. Ironically, that’s a place that I’m at. I go back to school tomorrow and I have to figure out a way to write every day again so that I can still put out content at 3:00 pm, even though I will be at work or in class many of those days during the whole morning. And it’s a little intimidating, because it’s so easy to fall out of a schedule.

Anyways, so how exactly do we achieve these goals? Well, we dig deeper. Maybe that means waking up an hour earlier, maybe it means doing things in advance so that things don’t accidentally fall apart because you were busy. Maybe there’s something else. Maybe it means reducing your work load a bit in order to better spread things out. I already did that once though, I knocked down my average writing from almost one thousand words per day to a number closer to five hundred words. Which had made writing a lot more manageable. I’ve also added some creative prose and quite a bit of poetry to challenge myself to write more and in new ways. I’m not the best at creative writing yet, and it has given me a lot more respect for people who write fiction for a living. I mean, it’s so difficult to write a book. I posted a short story about a girl that I wrote for a final on this blog, and that was something that I felt exhausted after writing, and it was just some 16 pages long. And people write thousands of pages chronicling these epic sagas of people.

Yet each of those books start with a single word on an empty page. Which is how I like to view all of life. We all start with blank pages any time we start a new journey. And the best part is anybody can start over. You can always tear a page out and start again if something went wrong. But if you keep writing, you’ll eventually have a notebook full of stories and ideas that nobody else can take from you. And that is beautiful in and of itself. Maybe your writing has been a little messy, or maybe you didn’t use perfect grammar at all times. Maybe you wrote in the margins. But if you made it through to the end, then your story is just as worthy as the billionaire who paid to have his story typed up in the end.

It’s been a long six months, and I’m glad to have had you along for the ride, whether this is your first trip with me, or your fiftieth. What do you think? What would you like to see more of? Let me know!

A LOOK INTO SPIRITUALITY

Hello everyone,

 

Good afternoon! So today I wanted to talk about the spiritual. Do you ever feel like you know what’s coming, or in touch with everything around you, and yet at the same time you feel like you are still your own being? Good, that means you’re capable of thinking about and observing the things around you, so hopefully this talk I’m giving will leave you thinking “Hmm” rather than “what the heck was he talking about?”

So let’s get into it. Being spiritual is something that a lot of people giggle and make jokes about. I have no doubt you’ve probably heard a condescending reference to some white woman talking about spirituality as she drinks her Starbucks and does yoga. And while those jokes are all well and good sometimes, they do undermine the value of being spiritual. I mean, from the perspective of an Atheist, I would imagine religious belief looks similar to this. Yet I guarantee if someone talked about the old white men with their robes and crackers, a large number of Christians would be upset. Regardless of jokes, the point of these comparisons is to express that spirituality is a subjective matter, and though one way is valuable to a large group of people, it’s very possible that another way is just as valuable to a smaller, less organized group.

So let’s talk about being spiritual. Man people who feel spiritual feel a connection to something. Whether it’s God, several gods, nature, or just the general vibe of living, typically there is a force outside the tangible that exists in the minds of these people. Of course, while just feeling a connection can be comforting, many people will go further and focus on this connection in order to create something out of it, or allow for it to shape their perspectives in life.

Now, I have no doubt many Christians reading this are a little upset that I equated spirituality to their religion, but at the base for it is. The whole basis for Christianity is very spiritual. Each person’s body is a vessel for an eternal soul, which goes somewhere that science cannot find, whether it’s heaven or hell. And that’s a fine belief to hold.

When I think about religion, I often think back to my history classes in high school, where I learned about Napoleon. Now, Napoleon, if memory serves, was a very religious person, but he realized that it provided an outlet for people to find peace, which, for an emperor, was very important. Does this mean he was controlling his masses? No, but it did mean he granted them the ability to control themselves. Which means being spiritual also provides new avenues for people to be controlled. Think about the old age of the Church, where in Europe, it was arguable that the Pope controlled more power than most countries. Hard to argue spirituality was good for the freedom of people.

Then again, the trade off for this freedom was comfort. People who suffer often turn to spirituality for happiness. And perhaps this is acceptable, even if it means the loss of some freedoms. What do you think? Let me know!

AN AGENT OF CHAOS

Hello everyone,

 

So as I was listening to George Carlin last night, I was thinking about the world and some other aspects of life. And I was specifically listening to him talk about entropy. Which is such an interesting concept. Entropy is basically the idea that things tend toward the chaotic in nature. For example, a built house will eventually break down if it is not kept up.

Which means that it is natural for things to break down over time—something we are made aware of in death. Since entropy is an aspect of nature, it therefore means that it is an aspect of life as well. Which means that aspects of human kind will break down over time if we don’t take measures to keep them up. For example, look at the Trump campaign. A vast number of people call him the second coming of Hitler, or the end of the United States. Which are both hard points to prove, though there certainly are indicators that either of these statements could be true. My point by bringing his campaign into this is to see how chaotic a bit of destabilization can cause the norms of the world.

As you’ve no doubt heard, a massive portion of his rhetoric is hateful against anyone but the white male. It’s divisive, but it’s more than that, it’s chaotic. Look at all the Southerners who have been allowed to run rampant through the media with comments like “Kill Clinton.” It’s a breakdown from society into anarchy. Now while this is natural, I want to reassert order because, in all reality, humanity is anything but natural. I mean, sure, in the literal sense we are just another creature, but people talk about the divide between natural and unnatural at the border of humanity. So let’s also point out that it is the job of humanity to escape the natural in order to achieve a higher society. I’ve mentioned this in economic aspects, moral victories, and so on. It’s our job to make the world a safer place. Chaos is inherently not safe.

Of course, it’s tempting to fall into chaotic tendencies. Typically, chaos has a hot, burning association with it—which may have developed out of Christian “fire and brimstone” rhetoric. Either way, it’s something that can be associated with various aspects of passion. Which is why chaos can be so grabbing to people, even without them realizing it.

I’m often reminded of the Joker from The Dark Knight when I think about these kinds of things. As an agent of chaos, he was something dangerous, because he caused things to break down. And while the reality was that he was a man with a plan, unlike what the movie made him out to be, it’s true that an upset to the established order can cause everything to break down. It’s like getting out of a rhythm. Think of order as a musical group. It’s really easy to play a song or two after some practice, but if you play for hours and hours on end, more and more mistakes with emerge, until eventually things are no longer harmonious. What do you think? Are we on a collision course with chaos? Let me know!