We all know that tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day. (Yayy! Turkey leftovers for the rest of this week!)

What is Thanksgiving Day about? You might be thinking, “Well, that’s pretty self-explanatory.” Sure, it is.

But think again. Are you really thankful? Thankful for all the things you have? Or are you already thinking about your strategy for Black Friday? Thinking about going out before 6pm to buy that “amazing, new” electronic device from Wal-Mart?

Seriously. We need to pull ourselves together. I don’t believe it when a lot of people I know say, “Oh, that’s so stupid. Who would even go there to buy that?” Like I’m going to believe that. Well, get ready for the news tomorrow or Friday, people. I’m telling you, there’s gonna be a lot of crazy stuff going on.

Have I ever gone Black Friday shopping? Yes. And whenever I do go, I go around 9 or 10 just to walk around the mall to see those people who are so done with shopping. It’s funny, actually. I don’t end up buying anything huge. I did buy one or two shirts last year, but that was just about it. Black Friday, for me, isn’t really what it’s cracked up to be. I’ve seen lower prices.) If you don’t mind big crowds, shop right before Christmas. That’s when everything goes on sale. Not to mention the fun you will have on after Christmas sales. Now that’s when prices drop.)

Businesses commercialize Black Friday too much. They make us believe that we’re paying a really good price for something, which is true in some cases, but is it really what it’s cracked up to be? Do we really want to trade the time we can spend with friends and family for something that won’t even matter a year from now? What’s a few saved dollars if we can create priceless memories with the people we love?

I’m not condemning everyone who likes Black Friday shopping. But what I’m saying is we need to put our attention on being thankful. And not about stuff, stuff, stuff.

Now go forth and stuff yourselves with food (e.g. turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, pumpkin pie, you name it.) Peace to all of you.🙂

Oh, and don’t max out your credit cards on Friday. 

Irony of situation.

Catching Fire, the sequel of the highly-acclaimed Hunger Games movie based off Suzanne Collins’s best-selling series, is now the top movie in America. Nearly all my friends have seen it. Have I seen it yet? No. Do I want to? Most definitely, yes. What do my parents think of it? They don’t like it. “Too violent.” “A very violent concept for teens to be watching.” “Disturbing.”

Now, check this. Ever since I was seven or eight, I’d been watching boxing. World welterweight champion, Manny Pacquiao, has been fighting for what seems like forever. His fights are on the top Pay-Per-View. My family always has parties and get-togethers with family and friends to watch Pacquiao fight his opponent. We cheer even more if it’s a KO. My parents love it. They’ve even watched classic boxers such as Muhammad Ali fight back in the day. Hundreds of dollars over the years, spent watching boxing. We eat. We scream. We have fun.

See what I’m getting to?

We crave for violence. Whether we like it or not, we are hungry, crazy people who long for bloodshed.

I’m not saying that everyone loves violence. Or that violence is good. I’m saying that we are at least curious about it. We crave it. Somehow, in the deep parts of us, there is a dark side that wants to see some action, some blood.

But is it profitable? Healthy, even?

Well… not really.

Studies show that those who listen to music with lyrics involving violence or have violent tones, tend to become violent. This, I believe, is very true because I notice it with myself too. When I listen to my favorite metal bands, I tend to snap more easily at my family members. It’s kinda scary.

The bottom line that I’m getting to here is that we can’t be blinded by violence. Is it bad to watch Catching Fire or boxing matches? No. But we shouldn’t be addicted to it or else eventually we will be building up with so much violence surrounding us that it will become difficult not to become violent ourselves.

So, I leave with this: Violence in media is not altogether evil, but the love of violence is what makes it evil.

Side note: My thoughts were all over the place writing this. I hope I got my points across.

Under Pressure

Posted: November 21, 2013 in Life
Tags: , , , , ,

I seriously need to stop spending time on the internet. It’s eating up my time. It’s eating me ALIVEEEE!!!

Drama aside, I really should pull myself together. I’m failing Physics. I’m way behind in my studies. I can’t finish my novel. I don’t have time to do things I’ve been planning to do.

The thing is, I can’t concentrate on anything. I only do things if I feel like it. Or if someone else is watching. Or if I’m in trouble.

It’s time for me to turn the tables and set my priorities straight. I’ve been telling myself this over and over again for the past few months.

And yet, nothing has happened. ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.

I still have no idea why I’m sharing this trivial information about my life to you all, but I have no one else to dump this burden on. I’m sick and tired of telling myself that I’ll do something. When, in reality, I can’t bring myself to do it. I can’t concentrate solely on school. It shouldn’t be that hard, but it is.

I’m tired. But at the same time, I want to do something. I want to be more than just the high schooler who spends most of her time in front of her laptop. I want to excel. I want to finish my novel. I want to get to my other hobbies. Not worry about school.

College is just around the corner for me, and I’m afraid that I’ll keep going in this cycle. The cycle of going through the motions without gaining any information. It sucks.

I’ll do my best to change this. I will.

But for now, I need to share this burden.

 I hope you can pull yourself together as I try to pull myself together. Peace to you, reader.

The F-word

Posted: November 1, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

No, not the curse word. The other one that we hate the most: Failure. 

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been feeling like I’m a failure. That I can’t live up to anything. That I can’t be good enough. I was one-third of a percent from qualifying for an award for school based on my SAT score. I was three questions away from passing my permit test. 

But I’ve thought of it, and failure is actually not so bad. Failure is just a detour from success. Sure, you can fail once, twice, or even more than three times, but you are always given the chance to try to succeed. No one can take that right away from you. I’m not sure if I’m saying this for you readers or for myself, but I guess this is a good lesson for all of us. I will take the SAT test again. And I will pass that permit test. It’s not the end of the road (haha, see what I did there?). Life will go on. 

Don’t let failure get in the way of success.

Now that the Underoath chapter has come to a close, a new door has opened for lead vocalist, Spencer Chamberlain. He is beginning a new project that deviates from Underoath and more onto the Alternative-Rock genre. He recently released the first single, “Rock and Roll Is Dead, and So Am I,” on their site, http://sleepwave.merchline.com/pages/tour. (You can get it for free. Yay!)

My thoughts on the song: I like the new sound that Spencer is trying out, but I do miss the screamo. He is certainly deviating from the grungy sound of Underoath and taking an entirely new path. There is nothing bad about it at all, but it is a huge change for Underoath fans. The lyrics to the song are all right. They’re better than a lot of the trashy music that’s on the Billboard Top 100. The tone of the song is mellow yet still carries elements from Disambiguation.

On  a final note, it’s all up to the listener. Whether you are an Underoath fan or not, give Sleepwave a try!

Today, I am excited to share this special post with you all. This is my first (sort of) collaboration with another blogger, my good friend CLynn who I met on NaNoWrimo (which I will probably post about in the future). We decided that music would be a good topic for our first Q&A because what’s better than a great song, right? We both hope you like this blog post because we’re really excited to share it with you! So these are her answers to the questions we both decided to answer. (My answers can be found on her blog. The link will be at the end of the post.) So without further ado, let’s get to the good stuff!

Q: What is music to you?  

A: Life. You CANNOT go a day without hearing any form of music. It’s everywhere. Even when you’re not paying attention. It is also therapy, I know music has helped me with some tough times. I often turn to music when I’m in any kind of mood. It’s a beautiful thing. You can express your feelings with it. You can relate to other people with it. It’s probably the most amazing thing anyone has ever invented in the history of the world.

Q: What is your favorite song?

A: Right now it’s: Ambulance Chaser by Search the City (it’s been on repeat all day)

Q: What is your favorite band?

A: Um, there’s no way I can pick just one! I’ll give you my top three: Sleeping with Sirens, Search the City, and NeverShoutNever

Q: What proponents do you like in a song?

A: Good vocals, a nice bass, meaningful lyrics, and a consistency with good songs.

Q: In what ways does music influence your every day life?

A: In every way possible. I never start or end my day without music. If I could, I would have it playing 24/7

Please copy and paste your favorite line from a song: “I’ve come undone, just so you could stitch me up. This damage seems to suit you.

Q: What would you call “Your Sound” when it comes to your music taste?

A: I feel like IndieRock/Pop. But I do enjoy SOME mainstream songs.

Q: What is the latest band that you’ve discovered and loved?

A: Search the City!!

If you would like to see my answers to these questions, find it on CLynn’s blog, http://misshopesblogs.wordpress.com. We both hope you all liked this post! We’re looking forward to making more posts like this one so stay tuned! Thanks for reading! You are what makes this blog complete.

Over the weekend, I’ve been thinking about happiness lately. What makes people happy? Money? Power? Fame?

There are so many things that, when we look at it from a distance, we think would most likely make us happy. However, happiness is really just not easy to find. Sure, you could be happy for a while, but how long will that happiness really last? A day? A week? A few months?

So, this past weekend, my parents finally bought me a longboard. I’d wanted one for nearly two years. And now, I finally have it! I’ve been riding it for the past few days and couldn’t be happier. When I’m not riding it, it stands against my wall in my room, and I can’t stop thinking about how beautiful it is. But today had other things of its own besides me and my longboard (which I’ve nicknamed “my new boyfriend.”) I had a test to worry about and a bunch of other school-related things to attend to. Was I happy during those times? Not really. Although I just got my longboard, I found myself already thinking about getting another longboard that I’m sure to enjoy more than this one.

What’s my point here, you may ask. My point is that, no matter what we do to try to fill our wants, we will always want something else to make us happy. Honestly, our mentality is not “give and take,” it’s more like “take and take.” We care so much about ourselves that we think in order to be happy, we have to get that next big thing then get the next one. We keep wanting to update our happiness. Like, happiness level 1.0 is what we may have now, then we want the 2.0 version, and soon enough we’ll be looking for 19302.0. It’s a cycle in us that seems to never be satiated. But, you don’t have to stay that way.

True happiness–a better word would be joy– can’t be found in things or money or fame or even power. Our true happiness comes within us. Within, surprisingly, the little things. With the things we already have and the things that can’t be bought by even a billion dollars. Little things like songs can totally change our perspective. Sure, you won’t be happy all the time. But you can definitely look at life in a more optimistic view. Look at what you have, be thankful that you’ve got clothes or shoes or an iPhone 4. Are the celebrities happy? They’ve got so much money and fame, right? They should be happy all the time, right? Nope.  Have you seen some of them lately? They get into drugs and all these illegal cases. Money and fame don’t seem to fill that void in them. I’ve met so many people who have such a great view on life, and they don’t even come close to having any of those riches that the celebrities have. Why so? They look at what they have. They’ve got family. They’ve got friends. They’ve got everything they need. (Emphasis on need not want.) Of course they have wants, but they don’t let that 5.0 get to them. They’re on a 99999.0 on their own.

Hopefully, you change your perspective from your wants and channel that to other things like helping someone who seems to be in a rut or simply giving someone a smile. Look at your wardrobe and smile at it rather than frown at the spot where new clothes should be. Love that 4.0 or whatever you have. Look at the little things. Listen to a feel-good song. Tell yourself that you are amazing!

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ll be off to read a book…