The Best Year?

Salvete Amici,

Being a freshman was fun.  And just like all other good things, I don’t want it to come to an end.  But it must.  We all move on to new and greater things at some point.  I mean, if I think back on it, there are so many times when I did not want to change, and then the change turned out to be fun:

  • I never wanted to move houses, but I have had wonderful memories in each new house to which I’ve moved.
  • I rarely want to watch the old movies my dad insists on showing us, but they always turn out to be really good!  (Well, that’s not really a change…)
  • I was really frightened of learning to drive, and now I’m starting to enjoy it.

And now, here I am, reluctant to let go of the title “freshman.”  Why is that?  I should excited to be growing older, (and hopefully wiser).

The truth is, every time something changes, it actually stays very much the same.  I thought  my life would change drastically when I turned 18.  But I’m still the same silly, excited, muddled girl that I was when I was 12.  However, I became more confident, and I met new people, and I became more independent, and I had new experiences.

It can only get better.

I just have to embrace it.

The Perks of Being Heartless

Today I was forced to watch the movie Contagion for our science class.

I do not recommend this movie.  I have always been a very imaginative and sensitive person when it comes to movies, and this one was no exception.  I was already stifling horrified tears ten minutes in as the camera shot long takes of Gwyneth Paltrow’s character foaming at the mouth as her young son looked on.

Finally I decided that the only way I could live through this movie was to become utterly heartless.  Every time I thought a character would die, I thought, “Good, yes, I want them to die.  People ruin the earth anyway.  We need to die off.”  It helped a little, but now that the movie’s over I still cannot shake this feeling of remorse and terror and not-wanting-to-touch-anything in my gut.

Rant Time:  Why was this movie made??  Why would anyone want to watch a movie that will freak you out??  Why on earth would someone buy a dvd of this movie???  And why did my professor make us watch it??

I am very.  Very.  Unhappy.

Bye.

Winter Update

Salvete Amici!

Sorry for the late update; finals were rough!  My chemistry was a little easier though because I found out that I didn’t need to take second semester chem, and I wasn’t as nervous about my grade.

I’m living on campus again for almost 3 weeks.  My college has two special freshman  programs, and this is the second one, Citizen Science.  The idea of CitSci is to teach all the students to be intelligent information seekers when it comes to science, as oppose to passively accepting what we see online or in the media.

So far, it’s fun, and my roommate is really nice!  The campus walkways are slippery, and the food is terrible, but I’m happy to see my friends again!  Oh, and my driving is getting better!  No license yet, though…

Well, I’m off to breakfast!

Peace,

~Pindari

Fall Break

Salvete Amici,

Today is the last day of fall break for me.  I’ll only have one class tomorrow, though, so it’ll be a nice way of easing back into school.

Many things have happened, but I don’t want to be too long-winded (since I’m trying to catch up on a bit of reading for tomorrow) so here’s a list:

1.  I’m a clubhead!  My group is called Sacred Harp*, and it’s a type of old American a capella singing with roots in the Primitive Baptist tradition.

2.  I changed my major.  At first I thought I was going to be Bio, now I’m leaning more towards Math.

3.  I’ve started taking driving lessons, and I’m practicing every day!

4.  I popped a tire during my practice yesterday, and I felt so bad 😀  But it was really fun replacing it with my dad.

5.  I met some smart, interesting, awesome friends at college.

6.  Mr. Buddy pooped on my sister’s bed.

That’s all for now,

Happy Fall!

Peace,

~Pindari

*For more examples of Sacred Harp songs, please check my Links page!

Expanding Horizons Part 2

Once I figured out that learning doesn’t necessarily require immediate understanding, I got really excited!

This was a whole new way of looking at things for me!

During one of our classes, our teacher showed us this short video:

Even though this dance has no explicit meaning, it leaves you with an aftertaste.  You’re not sure what just happened, but it’s intense, it’s jarring, it’s sad, it’s bittersweet…  I feel appreciation, even though I feel no understanding (in the traditional sense of understanding).

At the end of the second week, we went to the college museum.  We went to see an exhibit by Haim Steinbach.  When I read the description, I almost laughed out loud.  Okay, I was at peace with confusion and not understanding now.  But this?  How could I appreciate this?

It's just seemingly unrelated things…

It’s just seemingly unrelated things…

…place next to each other on shelves.

…placed next to each other on shelves.

Really?  But when I read his explanation for it, I wanted to like it immediately.  He said that when we look at things in everyday life, we define them by their context.  When you see something in a kitchen, then you usually assume it’s used for cooking.  But what he’s doing is experimenting with our perception.  What if you take something out of it’s context?  What is its definition now?  He wants us to ask “Why is the the dog toy next to the woman?  What do they have to do with eachother?”  Because maybe then, we’ll think of those objects differently.  That was my take on it anyway.

So that’s my new perspective on art now.  Thanks to L&T, I am way more open to new things.  Obviously, these two posts aren’t going to convince you––you may be thinking, “I still don’t see what the big deal is,” or “Okay, college has gotten to her, she’s nuts!”

But you really need to immerse yourself in an environment like L&T to free your inhibitions.  Even if that doesn’t change your view on art, it will show you that there are so many new paths for you to explore, and you didn’t see them before because they don’t look like paths; some go up, some go down, and some bend around sideways in a möbius strip to more questions.

Peace,

~Pindari

Expanding Horizons Part 1

So.  The Deets.

Today, I’d like to tell you about my perspective on art.

The big thing that I learned during my time at L&T was that there are two ways of ‘understanding’ things.  One way is that you read something, and you know what it means.  The second way is that you feel utter confusion.  You read a work and don’t even try to understand it, instead you just let it wash over you.

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The first week of L&T

Now, this may not make a lot of sense (and it didn’t to me at first either) but hear me out.  When L&T began, I thought it was going to be like a literature analysis class.  I had read the assigned readings, and I was expecting to have a class discussion when I came in on the second day.  The reading had been confusing, and I was hoping to ask some questions and get some answers.

Instead, my teacher read a quote from the text and told us to “write to it.”  I was baffled.  How can I write to it, if I don’t know what it means?  What does that even mean?  Doesn’t she mean write about it?

But, hey, I’m willing to try new things.  I began to write to it.  I wrote to it as if it was a stranger, dissecting the sentence physically (e.g. “I notice that you are capitalized strangely–I wonder why the author wrote you that way.  When I read the word meek I cant help thinking of a baby deer…”)  And Lo and behold, meaning began to unfold.

By ‘talking’ to this quote I had teased out my own meaning for it!  And even more amazing, when we took turns reading what we had written, everyone else had done similar things.  It was like an unconscious understanding.

To be Continued…

Guess What?

It was fine.  In fact, the night that I wrote that last post, I went to an orientation panel where all the PC’s (Peer Counselors) basically told us that they had the same feelings as me.  Some of them didn’t even meet their friends until after freshman orientation.

As you can tell, I’m feeling better.  I have met a really special friend, and some other really great friends who make me feel happy every day!

There isn’t much time for me to write, but I can’t wait to tell you about my ‘college experience.’

One tip:

-Get a bike.  Your legs will thank you!

 

Alright, I really have to go and finish my essay.

Peace,

~Pindari

I’m Finally Here! (and Homesick…)

Salvete Amici,

It’s the first day of college!  Actually, it’s the first day of freshman orientation, which is kind of like a logic, thinking, and writing intensive, but I’m in my dorm, so hey.

Things have been good.  I met some cool people, but they’re all either on a different floor, or in a different dorm, and I’m feeling kind of lonely in my single.  Here’s the thing:  I feel like I have no right to complain, I mean, I have a single!  But… all the people on my floor are really hipster-y and some are off to get high right now, and all the girls are already friends––It’s just a perfect time for the homesickness to creep in…

Out of the other girls that I have met, 3 or them are on the same floor together, and two of the others are roommates.

Okay, I need to stop with the pity party.  I’m sorry.  I just don’t want to worry my parents, so I’m dumping it all on you 😀

Well… it’s time for some more icebreaker games, so I better go.

Wish me luck!

Peace,

~Pindari

Fasting Tips

Salvete Amici,

And if any of you are Muslim, Eid Mubarak!  If not, you’re probably wondering what that means!?  The past 30 days, from June 8-August 7, Muslims all over the world have been fasting to celebrate Ramadan.  The fast is pretty harsh: no food or drink from 3am-8:30pm every day.  It’s supposed to be a time to humble you, show you what it is like for people who don’t have food, and pray.  However, it’s aso a time to celebrate and visit friends.  In fact, your blessings increase if you invite others over for a break-fast feast.  Anyway, the last day of Ramadan is called Eid al-Fitr, which is a huge feast, and a great day of celebration, and ‘eid mubarak’ means ‘happy eid!’

Now I’m not Muslim, but I told my best friend (who is) that I would try fasting for one day.  I love dares, so this was like the ultimate challenge!

Here are some things I learnt that might be helpful to anyone else who’s thinking of fasting (for health or religious purposes):

1.  It’s a really good idea to eat right before you begin fasting.  The night before, I ate a late dinner, and then set up a little snack on my bedside table (milk, a power bar, and water).  I also set my alarm for 2:45am.  Even thought I was half asleep when it went off, and not really hungry, I forced myself to eat anyway, and I drank the water LAST.

2.  Hunger comes and goes.  I wasn’t actually hungry all the time, but there where some moments when I really want to have a look in the fridge, or drink a glass of water.  Give yourself little tasks throughout the day.  Once you begin to distract yourself, you’ll forget about the hunger until it passes.  But don’t do anything too strenuous, or requiring too much focus.  Take a small walk, take a nap, watch a movie, etc.,.

3.  Relaxing helps you fast.  Don’t fast on a day when you have to meet people or go places.  Those things require a lot of energy that you won’t be renewing.

4.  Food aromas help!  Yes, I was really surprised by this.  Smelling my dad make lunch actually relieved the hunger I was feeling then.

Towards the end of my fast, around 7pm, was when I started to feel really hungry.  My stomach was growling, and I couldn’t pay attention to the movie I was watching, but that was probably because I knew I was going to eat soon.  My stomach was anticipating this coming reward!

But when I finally ate, I actually was satisfied really quickly.  One serving, and I was full.  This actually continue for the next couple days.  I had no urges to eat between meals, or take extra servings, and I felt really good!

So in closing, I definitely recommend fasting.  If you aren’t religious or doing a dare, you should definitely drink water every now and then.  But just try it, and see how you feel afterwards.

I’m so gad I did 🙂

Peace,

~Pindari