Wednesday, April 7, 2010
I realized I read a lot of things I normally wouldn't. There are a lot of books or topics, or authors I would never read, frankly because I never heard of them, but mostly it's not what I thought I would be interested in. But I'm glad I did. I learned from them. Not only did I learn a nice story and some simple themes, but with critical theory I can dig deeper and learn more. I could feel the cogs in my brain turn and work a bit harder than they usually do.
I also love that as I learned about these theories and discussed them I was able to use them in my everyday life. I saw them everywhere and in everything. I saw them in books, movies, music, life scenarios, work, and church. I noticed looking back that I especially dug deeper in the oddest of things, like Disney.
So in the end, I've learned more about me than I thought I would. I learned that if I just let go and look harder I can get more out of literature which will carry over into my life. I've also learned that no matter what anyone else thinks, my opinion counts and it should be shared so that others can gain something from it, what ever it may be. I've also learned a lot more about different authors and different genres that I like and should read. For someone like me, that is something special. Well South Pacific is on the last song and I think I'll end this blog and listen a bit more closely so that I can see what I can learn from it, and maybe sing it out loud before the roomies get home. :) It's been a great semester, I'm sad to see it end.
Monday, April 5, 2010
I would become a blogger...Little did I know (what a simple, yet powerful and usually scary phrase) that this would become my Mount Everest of the internet/technological world. Someone like me who likes flipping the pages of a book over the scrolling of a sidebar should have known that something like this is not so simple and "easy" as it appears to be for others.
The realization that this will stick with you "FFFFooorrreeevvvvveeeerrrr" (thank you Squints) is a little intimidating. Pick a name, pick a layout, don't like that lay out go to a webiste and switch it. Don't like that one you just switched it to, its ok. Try another. Oh wait, its not working. Try again. Still not working. Maybe get out of everything and start all over. Nothing changed. Hmmmm maybe you still have the original copy lets copy something different just to make sure. Yep, its working. Hmmmm, well maybe I'm the exception to the rule. Lets try the FAQ page. Well that didn't help just like every other FAQ page. What made me think that would work? Hope. Well sometimes hope is overrated. So then what, well maybe the program has had its fun and done watching me suffer in agony and feel as though I'm definitely not smarter than a 5th grader. Nope, the mocking continues.
The hands go up in the air and come back down pounding the couch cushions. All the while an exasperated noise escapes as the head frustratingly hits the back of the couch barely missing the wall. Although, if it would have hit the wall it would have given more of an excuse to throw a tantrum, like the little child that you are slowly regressing to. But alas, no such luck. So what now? Maybe in all of that someone will show mercy and come help. A rescue. If I remembered moors code I'd S.O.S. someone. Fortunately a kind Fairy Godroommie happened to turn her head in my direction and came over to help. There she was deleting 13 (could be more but we didn't start counting till a little later) of my failed attempts. and with a wave of her magic wand there it was the layout I had been trying to get for over an hour.
Ok I feel better now. I can do this. Whats next a picture? Are you serious. Another decision? It's like that scene in You've Got Mail, "The whole purpose of places like Starbucks is for people with no decision-making ability whatsoever to make six decisions just to buy one cup of coffee. Short, tall, light, dark, caf, decaf, low-fat, non-fat, etc".
Now I do know how to make decision, but such things as colors, fonts, layouts, titles, pictures, are meant to take time. This is a serious matter. Well after picking one picture I, of course, decide to change it. So I pick the first picture I thought of (a very true to life picture unfortunately, but hey it brings a smile to others). So I decide, I should crop it out. So I open this picture in another program to crop it and make it pretty. So I hit save and look i that folder I saved it to, and to my technological track record there was no change. "Nooooooooooooo. you've got to be kidding me." More grunts, more hands flaring, more frustration. It's a good thing I don't swear. So I try again, and again, and again. Finally I decide hey, I need to let other people of my woes. So I update my facebook status aad with it a bribe and a plea for help. And wouldn't know it, that at that time my Fair Godroommie happened to have read it and took me up on my bribe and helped me out. Well she once again waived her magic wand and there we go. Saved as I had cropped it. (I would tell you how she did it but my pride has already been hurt enough. It's really embarrassing. I chalk up my stupidity to a long day.)
Ok upload picture. Oh wait how do I do that again? I need to write these things down. Ok here it is. Upload and done. Lets preview. What? The other picture is still there? I just want to blog. Why can't I just blog? A voice is heard from the left "Denise, you can still blog. You can continually update and fix things as you go." My fairy Godroommie is wise.
In the end I still have blogging problems and probably will as long as I blog. Maybe I'll try writing it on a huge billboard for all to read instead. Ya, I think I could handle that.
Saturday, April 3, 2010
Thursday, April 1, 2010
I absolutely love when there are no rules. I love when you have to think outside the box, because I tend to do that anyways, which can be good but can be bad. I love not having restrictions. I know that finals can be scary, and I've had some doozies in my life, but I must admit that this final in this English class gives me a smile. I know what I'm going to do, I have yet to write it or figure out my presentation but the idea is one that I know I can talk about. I almost dread the beginning by I will love the ending. This is my kind of assignment.
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
At BYU we have the perfect example. As I was sitting in RS I thought of how nice it was to have a power point presentation and how sometimes we use Mormon Messages to add to the topic. Then I thought of the last time I was in a regular ward and was taught with the traditional printed out quotes or the thirty year old pictures from the library that all hang from the chalkboard. It's an entirely different feel altogether. Although one style is new and the other old they both teach the message we are supposed to be learning. I can appreciate the old style and that's how I grew up, but its definitely refreshing to have a new style.
Of course the ultimate answer is between the extremes of Purves and Bloom I would want the happy medium of Croft! :) You have to know the old to appreciate the new. The new is based off the old. Put a little Beethoven with your Frank Sinatra, add it to the Beatles and together they'll be partying it with Michael Jackson and Owl City. Or in other words, The Bible+Shakespeare + Austin+Lewis=J.K. Rowling. You can't go wrong with the classics but don't snub the modern.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Monday, March 22, 2010
Last week I helped at a reception for someone in my ward. And as I was serving drinks I looked over and there was the wedding party taking pictures. And I as I watched the story “A Good Man Is Hard to Find” by Flannery O’Conner seemed to come to mind. Not that there was a group of guys coming to kill anyone, not that there was a cat or noisy kids or anything like that, and not that they had southern accents (although it was an Irish theme and there were some fake Irish accents heard from time to time) but that the bride instantly reminded me of the grandma. There she was, sitting on a chair dead center of the picture with her husband and their families standing behind her. And the bride had this “don’t mess with me I rule the world and I will rule your life for as long I live” look plastered on her face in each picture. My mind instantly went to the grandma and how she will probably be the boss of her children, and her grandchildren and even though she doesn’t have the southern “charm” she definitely has the matriarch vibe. I must say I was surprised that I was able to connect her with someone I had read about and I must say I was even grateful so that I could compare her with someone, even if it wasn’t the best character to compare her too.
Later on one of the guys from my ward came over to help me watch over and serve the drinks and as he was stirring the punch he started to recite the line from Macbeth “Bubble, bubble toil and trouble…” I couldn’t help but laugh thinking that the Flannery O’ Conner story and Macbeth are tragedies and yet here we are at this joyous occasion. I really hope we didn’t jinx anything.
Thursday, March 11, 2010
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Ok so I wrote this a week or so ago and forgot to post it, so here it is better late than never.
I’ve been thinking about the moral views of the main “chickflicks” that I watch. One just happens to be You’ve Got Mail. I do admit it is not the best example morally. It has two sets of people living or “practically living” together. It mentions infidelity and homosexuality. One could even argue that the main characters are cheating on their current lovers by chatting online and noticing that more than friendly feelings are starting to develop. I guess by those standards you would think that it’s a horrible movie and no one should watch it. Well doesn’t there have to be some sort of moral dilemma so that the characters can grow and learn? The “belly of the whale” moment for Joe Fox (Tom Hanks’ character) comes while he is stuck in an elevator and Kathleen Kelly (Meg Ryan) I’d say once her store closes. By the end of the movie they dump their previous lovers after realizing they no longer love them. The enemies become friends, and they fall madly in love with each other through one of the best ways that two people should fall in love, through friendship. They turn their lives around and decide whats truly important. I’m not sure where to rank it. It’s definitely cleaner than other “chickflicks” and might I say more quotable, but it still eludes to immoral behavior but with a proper and gratifying ending.
Tom Hanks “Don’t cry shop girl.”
Meg Ryan “I wanted it to be you. I wanted it to be you so badly.” Then they kiss and a great song starts as the camera pans toward the sky. (sigh)
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
As I read other blogs I thought about what they wrote about it and how their thoughts or poems or articles had to do with something of their life, whether they were going through it or a friend was. Thats what we do, we write about our life.
So tonight I'm writing about what I know. I know that my roommate at this very moment has her backpack turned upside down and over the kitchen trashcan emptying it out of any and all crumbs that may have accumulated over the past few weeks. My other roommie is sitting in her reclining chair with black headphones in her ears, a yearbook on her lap and her computer on top of that. I'm assuming she's catching up on a show that was missed while we were all being spiritually enlightened at our stake institute class. And then there is me. Sitting smack dab in the middle of the love seat doing her homework to the sound of, well used to be silence but now is a vacuum sucking the cookie crumbs from the innards of a backpack.
Could this be a poem? Why not. Could this be in a movie? I hope so. Could this be in a blog? It is now! Isn't writing grand?
Friday, February 12, 2010
The King Inside
Let’s take a journey back to our childhood. Remember back in the day, a little movie called, “The Lion King”? Well, I think we can learn a lot from it, if we just look. (You know you want to keep reading, if anything out of pure curiosity). And one part in particular seems to be standing out to me.
So I’m sorry, but I’m not going to give you a brief summary of the Lion King. If you don’t know it, I suggest for you to go borrow the movie from someone in the ward and watch it. So now that that’s been said, let’s dive in shall we? In the song “Can You Feel the Love Tonight”, there is a part where Simba and Nala actually sing their thoughts about each other. Which goes as such:
Simba thinks, “So many things to tell her, but how to make her see. The truth about my past? Impossible! She’ll turn away from me.”
Nala then thinks, “He’s holding back, he’s hiding. But what, I can’t decide. Why won’t he be the king I know he is, the king I see inside?”
Wow. Could anything be truer for men and women? I tell ya, Disney got it right. They should do a fireside on this, or write an article. Oh wait, I am. Well ok then. Oh… I’m sorry, did you not understand? Well I’ll tell you. In the single boy and girl world that we are presently in, boys tend to think that girls will turn away from them because of their past and maybe even present, and so they are afraid. And girls only see the future and (key word) potential, and get frustrated when guys can’t see it. Let’s go deeper.
Some boys often see themselves in the past or in the present. They think of their rebel days or maybe how they were immature, or how their family life was or is. They think of how much school they have left, how they don’t have a car, or the whole lack of money issue. So in turn, they assume no one will accept them. They seem to think that if they are having trouble getting the “High School” image out of their own heads then other people (mainly girls) will too. It’s hard for them to see themselves as anything different, and so they act like that. They succumb to the lower expectations or potential. And because of this they get discouraged, especially when it comes to dating. But what they don’t realize is that most girls don’t think that way.
The first thing a girl sees in a guy, whether he be a friend, someone they’re interested in, or even just Joe Shmoe, is his potential. Girls look to the future. They don’t care how the guy was in High School. High school’s over. They care about how he can and will grow. They see him as a provider, proctor, and yes even as a future king. As Nala says, we can see who he is inside and so we try to treat him as the man he is becoming, and as the Priesthood holder he is so that he can see for himself what we see.
So what is the point I’m trying to get across? The point is no matter what we’ve done in the past, or how we may have been perceived, we should always rise to our full potential. We’re all guilty of falling back into the past or acting like idiots because that may be what people treat us as. But we need to “remember who we are” and see each other as we should be seen, as our Heavenly Father sees us. And we need to help each other rise up instead of fall down. If others are treating you with their low expectations, then say something to them, or bypass them and find someone who will help lift you.
Monday, February 1, 2010
As I thought about these words I thought of the scriptures and how it talks about a host of angels or how the light of God can be seen as golden, or I picture how we were all crowded together learning from God. For some reason I then transform this poem to being places in Heaven, and every word is symbolic of something heavenly. I then begin to see things in a new light.
Taking that concept of angels, I also started to think, that maybe this could be the point of view of an angel looking down on earth in awe of what god has created. The angel can see everything, and yet, can't necessarily have the human experience of it. The angel must look down and describe as it can, what earth and humans are like. I can't remember who said it, but someone referenced Disney's Fantasia. I think that this could be a scene in a movie like that, that is only intensified through music.
Finally I love how the last stanza shows us how we can reflect any time we want on the beauties of the earth, and how that will give us joy and peace. Wordsworth and his sister, sure got it right.
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
As I read the poem I pictured a mother telling this poem to a young child as a bed time story. I love how it brings up such huge questions, cosmic questions, and yet its meant to be understood by all ages. I also love how a lot of the examples or questions that are presented can be taken in a personal childlike way. You could replace the word lamb for child or son. Every child is a child of God and its a very easy way to associate that principle with this poem by replacing the word. It brings God to a level that the reader can understand. The poem compares Him with us mere mortals.
In a way I could see this poem being taken from Psalms in the Bible. I think it would fit very nicely. After all it was meant to be song.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
As I continued to watch and listen I found the words to be quite witty, so witty that a child would have missed the context completely. As I watched I thought of all the underlined morals, themes and messages that were being poured onto the screen. I started analyzing every little thing and realized that here I was Monday night picking apart and critically thinking about a Disney movie. What has happened? Sure I still enjoyed it for what it was and for the laughter, the songs, and the little rabbits with their adorable accents, but now I was seeing it in a new light.
Is this what BYU does to us? And now that I think of it, I was analyzing other movies, and books and stories that I read and watched in the past few days. It seemed as though I was taking our class activity of Dancing Through the Decades to another level, which included movies, scriptures and books. Will I ever be able to enjoy just reading a book or watching a movie for sheer pleasure? Of course, but now I can peel away the layers of what has been written and use some critical theory to broaden my horizons.
Monday, January 18, 2010
Easy for him to say. Sometimes I'll sit with my fingers softly touching the keys of my Cherry red laptop and wait for something to write about. I'll begin a sentence and then immediately hit the backspace button until I'm back where I started. A blank box with a blinking cursor laughing, almost mocking me for not being able to write. "I thought you wanted to be a writer?" it says, "I thought you wanted your voice out there for all to hear?" And so, to prove the cursor wrong, I try again only to repeatedly hit the backspace as before.
Sometimes, I admit, the cursor wins the battle , and I close out of my blog with nothing posted, no insight to share, no thoughts forever recorded in cyberspace. But I'm proud to admit that even though this is a bunch of nothingness that I have written, at least it's written. Point for me.