"plain English"//

In the swirl of thoughts that invade my brain before sleep, one from this past week sticks out.

I am in the middle of my media literacy class.
It is an extremely uncomfortable place for two reasons:

1) Nobody answers the professor when she asks questions.
2) Outside of forced conversation, nobody speaks.

It’s like a game of chicken– the question is asked and we sit in silence until someone speaks up (I could go on about how problematic that alone is, which is undoubtedly a result of fear of judgement by other peers, or embarrassment at not knowing the correct answer).

No one says anything. Our professor knits her eyebrows together anxiously, helplessly scanning the room for hands, for eyes, for any sign that someone will open their mouth, but it remains a stubborn, silent duel.

I have answered her questions many times. And every time I do, I think back to elementary and middle school, where the common ideology was that if you always raised your hand to answer, you were either the teacher’s pet or a know-it-all. I can’t say those labels haven’t deterred me from answering or participating in class in the past, but I was sick of it.

If no one was going to answer to move the class and our lives along, I would.

She was asking about the flaws with the theory that the media permeates human minds like a hypodermic needle, bending the thoughts, ideas, and actions of defenseless humans to the media’s will (also known as bullet theory).

I answered her question with, what I thought, was a simple response, clear as to what I meant.

I replied with, and I quote:
“This theory is problematic in that it fails to address human agency.”

While she acknowledged my answer and the fact that it was correct, she recommended that I explain my answer in “plain English” for the class.

For a second, I was unsure of what to say, too baffled to be offended.
I thought about the class– were they insulted? Did a class of 18-20 year olds really need a breaking down?

Thoughts one after another went through my mind
This is a college class….


And then I realized.

More times than I can count, I’ve witnessed myself (and others!) feel a need to “dumb down”. Whether that’s in class or in social situations, there have been times where raising my hand (or not) or using obscure vocabulary (or not) has been censored by perceived social consequences.

Why is this?

Why is it so hard to speak up? Why is it so easy to fall into lower standards of conversation of slang merely for the approval of others? Since when was a wide vocabulary a turn-off? Why do we fall so easily into these rigid sets of “expectations”?

After that class I knew I needed to do something.

And that something was to stop expecting expectations. Rather, to shatter them and participate in ways that are meaningful and beneficial to my interests and what I hope to accomplish from any given transaction, inside or outside the classroom.

Today in my education class my professor asked for volunteers. Observing that the class/ hesitation, he scolded us jokingly and said that when he taught kindergarten and barely finished uttering the word “volunteer”, there’d be a sea of hands shooting up to participate, to experience, to learn.

What we need is the adoption of the inhibition levels of kindergartners, free of social censorship, fear of judgement, perfection, and stigma towards saying what we want to say, however eloquently we desire.

What we need is to stop “dumbing down”.

What we need is to start “learning up”.

// DIY Valentines! [a tad nsfw] //


Happy Valentine’s Day (:

So I know people have (literally) love-hate relationships with Valentine’s Day, but honestly I just try to ignore the whole single-vs.-not-single stuff and make efforts to enjoy all of the sugar and mushy puns and witty cards!

That being said, if you’re looking for something sweet for anyone special in your life, I hope you can find it here– I just made these cards for my 3 roommates and I *love* how they turned out!
They’re mostly inside jokes, but I think the design could be used for any purpose you’d like (:

Let’s look at what happened:

// First I folded pink card-stock paper into a slender rectangle card (I liked the aesthetics of the long skinny card but you can honestly manipulate this to your liking!)

// I wrote the text I desired for the front in different fonts on white paper! (Sharpie thin pens work really well, but I used a black ballpoint pen for that kind of sketchy-not-quite-art vibe :P)

// I then cut the words out as squares and rectangles and proceeded to glue the words to the front of the cards.

//I wanted to make the words pop a bit, so I outlined the paper boxes in black sharpie!

//I finished off the cards with a cute message inside along with a personal note to the left!

….And there you have it! Super easy DIY Valentines for not only Feb 14th but anytime you want to make something for someone else (:

Life as of Lately: 2.11.17


It has been a looooong while. Partially because I haven’t really been on social media for reasons outside of work. I’m trying not to get so absorbed in it all.

[Reading] The Hamilton Affair by Elizabeth Cobbs! I’m *still* somewhat obsessing over Hamilton so this book jumped out at me on the shelves. I’m halfway through it (and would be further along if it weren’t for stupid HW assignments…. :P).

[Writing] Nothing important yet.

[Learning] how to code! Starting with HTML and CSS and oh boy I cannot wait to start doing more projects 😀 I got this book off Amazon and it’s super sleek and awesome when it comes to
explanations so I love it 😀

Also learning the peace that comes with not having to check social media every 5 mins or whenever I’m bored. I’ve done so much rolling around in the green, breezy reality that is this weather lately and I love it. 

[Doing] not homework LOL things like coding and designing shtuffs and reading books and playing on my PIANO that I brought from HOME just recently :D.

[Eating] cottage cheese, spinach, chickpeas, peas, brownies, tacos, and pizza. Oh, and icecream. So. Much. Frigging ice cream. >.<

[Drinking] milk and water. And coffee. (Hello, my old friend)

[Listening] to so many thinnnnngggggs ugh. I also need to find new music because otherwise I’ll listen to John Mayer and Hamilton all my life and I will not escape (which isn’t….necessarily a bad thing…).

[Laughing] at how unorganized my books are. I need to clean my life up a bit.

[Thinking] about how I want to choose my majors. But I don’t know if I want to commit just yet… Thinking about doubling up with German and Mediated Art & Design stuff with the cherry on top as teacher licensure.

[Hoping] this eerie global warming weather keeps up. Warm weather just puts me in my *element*. 💜

[Loving] this CRAZY 79 degree weather we had today. I don’t get it. It literally snowed one day, and then the next day it was in the upper 60’s. Global warming totally isn’t a thing. Obviously.

[Praying] for my god sister and her family.  She just lost her dad a week ago and it was totally unexpected and out of the blue.

I also, as always, continue to pray for this world.

What’s new in Februrary for you guys?