No Offence But Why Is Humanity Such A Mess Right Now

It seems like I wake up every day to some more disheartening news. Mass shootings, sexual harassment, Trump’s existence… I am tired of it, y’all. It seems like nothing in the world is going right.

How did it come to this? How is humanity as a whole so messed up? How did it get so bad?

No one is safe. Nothing is safe. You can’t avoid the news or the commentary or the outcomes. You just have to deal with it all and try to learn from it and hope that we can move on, but we can’t. There’ll be another mass shooting, another sexual predator, another tragedy, and the cycle of disappointment starts all over again.

a broken world in a dustpan

I usually try to stay away from the negatives and keep out of the discussions, but news of Harvey Weinstein’s creepy and disgusting behavior has completely consumed my social media feeds and it’s just so scary. It’s so scary that there are a) people in this world that think what he did is normal or okay, b) people in this world who allowed it to happen for decades, and c) people in this world who have to deal with creeps like that. All of the sudden, people of all ages and sizes and genders are speaking out about their sexual harassment experiences and it’s so sad. If people with power are experiencing it, how are the rest of us supposed to deal when we can’t afford lawyers or have legions of fan support? It’s heartbreaking.

This whole event is really shining a light on sexual harassment, which is good, but as I said, nothing is safe. People are calling for the upcoming Justice League movie to fail because old footage of stars Ben Affleck and Jason Momoa being rude and sexist has surfaced. I was looking forward to that movie. As twisted as it may sound right now, the entertainment industry is my escape from the world’s issues…even if a lot of shows and movies now slide in subtle political commentary…

I feel like the whole entertainment industry is being shaken up, but in the end, very little will change. While Weinstein may have gotten fired, people like Casey Affleck and even Donald Trump still have jobs, and I suspect Ben Affleck and Jason Momoa will too.

And while I’d love to say that in twenty or thirty years when all the creepy old men are retired or dead and the next generation is in charge that things will be better, I don’t think it will be. Kids these days are wild. Have you seen a 12-year-old on the Internet recently? They’re rude and sexist and inappropriate. My generation is only slightly better. That’s not to say that everyone is doomed, but I’m not too optimistic. Just saying.

The thing is, there’s no quick fix. I try educating my male friends on feminism and all that jazz, but who’s to say they understand it? Who’s to say they’ll stop making rude jokes? And how is that going to change the world? How is that going to help women in America? How is that going to help people of colour in America? Or people in the rest of the world? People better than me have for years tried to educate the world and make a change and yet here we are, as the world burns and drowns around us and politicians are more concerned with kneeling at a sporting event. We’ll never be free.

I don’t know what else to do or say.

girl saying she's losing faith in humanity

And why am I writing this? So far, I haven’t been personally affected. It feels silly of me to sit here and complain about this and how disheartening it is when I’m up in Canada enjoying healthcare and gun laws and a sane leader. I’m sorry if I sound pretentious right now.

If everyone could just, like, be a civil, normal, kind human being, that’d be really great. Thanks.

 

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Shoutout To Libraries, The Real MVPs

As someone who avoids spending money whenever possible because she’s the daughter of someone who also avoids spending money whenever possible, I was introduced to the public library at a very young age. My small town has three branches and always had the latest books and whatnot. I was an avid reader when I was young, and even now that I’ve slowed down my reading a little, I still go to the library one a week when I’m at home. One of the first things I did when I moved away for school was get a local library card, and ya girl now can check books out of not one, not two, not three, but four different library systems.

'Arthur' characters singing "having fun isn't hard when you've got a library card."
You knew this gif was coming.

In the last few years, though, I haven’t checked as many books out as I do movies. My local library is great about ordering the newest and coolest DVDs right away, and though the waitlist for those hits one hundred in hours, my library also does this thing called Rapid Views in which really popular movies are able to be checked out for only two days (as opposed to a week) so more people can access them quicker, and these copies cannot be put on hold. My parents and I are always checking out movies from the Rapid View shelf.

Does your library do anything similar? I’m always baffled when people say they don’t take advantage of their local libraries. They’re free, folks. Free. You can check out the latest movies, books, CDs, or even video games for zero dollars and zero cents. Why buy movies/shows on iTunes or pay for Netflix subscriptions when you can borrow all that media for free?

And aside from the no-cost aspect, libraries are great for so many more reasons. A lot of libraries are also community centers where there are often events or courses or sessions, usually also free. Some libraries also have study rooms or presentation rooms that can be booked so work can be done there. Libraries also have many computers that you can also use if your wifi is down or you ran out of data. Libraries also never try to extort money from you. They don’t have free trials or anything like that to lure you in, they just have everything for free. It’s glorious.

Three people dancing in a library
Me and my parents hitting up the local library. Not pictured: my brother who has $8 in fines.

In such a consumerism-driven society, it’s so great to have libraries serve as these little pure sanctuaries of knowledge and peace.

I can’t remember if it was a Tumblr post or a Tweet that I read, but it basically said that if a library was a new concept pitched today, it’d never see the light of day because there’s no way the government or anybody would allow so much to happen without a profit being made. And that’s very true. We’re lucky that they already exist.

Anyway, this was just my little ode to libraries. They’re a gift to mankind, and I hope they live on for a good long while because they’ve brought me alone so much happiness. If you don’t actively go to the library, I highly suggest you get a card and go, because they’ve got a lot to offer. For free. They the real MVP.

P.S. I love Leslie Knope more than anything, okay, but her hate for libraries was way out of line.

 

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Monthly Look Ahead: October 2017

Time for pumpkin spiced everything and overpriced candy in stores because it’s October! September was pretty warm and while the forecast was calling for a mild October, that’s still cold for me. And then, of course, there’s Halloween. As I’ve stated before in blog posts, I don’t really care for Halloween aside from pumpkin seeds. And I’ve got a project due that day. But there are a few things happening this month that have got me ready to embrace it with moderately open arms, and here’s what they are.

monthly look ahead logo

  • Fall reading week 2017! I was about ready for a break a week into this school semester and I guarantee I’ll be even more ready in a few weeks. Thanksgiving and reading week will be much appreciated.
  • More TV shows! Half my shows came back last month, but the other half start this month. Returning to my small screen in October are Supergirl, The Flash, Arrow, Legends Of Tomorrow, Riverdale, Blindspot, and The Middle.
  • Apparently, PBS is airing full musicals on TV on Fridays, which is really cool! She Loves Me and Falsettos are just two of the handful of shows that will air, according to this. My little TV does manage to pick up PBS so hopefully I can watch them that way, or stream them online if I can’t. Either way, free pro-shot musicals. Yay. (Even though I didn’t love Falsettos…)
  • I am hoping some of my novel’s beta readers finish their read this month and give me some feedback. As busy as I am and as much as I complained about editing, I do kind of miss working on my story. I spent so much of my summer on it, I’m kind of itching to go back. If any of you beta readers are reading this, no pressure, take your time, of course, but just know that I am very eager to hear your thoughts!
a hedgehog in leaves
This is cute. Happy Fall!

Well, that’s about it. Kind of a quiet month. Fun times, right? What’s your spooky month consist of? Make an MLA post and let me and your followers know!

 

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What’s Going On In My Mouth

I can’t wait to see the stats for this post because I’m sure everyone is just dying to know what’s going on in my mouth, understandably.

I got braces! Well, not those metal railroad things, I got Invisalign braces, which are thin but tough teeth liners that slowly shift teeth by inserting new, slightly different liners every few weeks. So you can’t really notice that I have them in but they’re there. I feel them. It’s only been a few days but my teeth hurt real bad. Can teeth throb? Because mine are. Also my tongue keeps rubbing up against the plastic edges so it feels like I burnt it.

Holt saying "I am in incredible pain" with a straight face

So why do I have them? Well, for one, this is my last year on my father’s insurance so I either get them now or I don’t get them ever (without it costing me an arm and a leg). And two, my mouth is lowkey problematic.

Last summer I noticed I had chipped my front tooth a little. We went to the orthodontist and he said that it’s because I grind my teeth at night. So the dentist shaved down my chip and I was fitted for a night guard that I wore every night for a year (shuper shexy). I didn’t know I’m a night grinder because I never woke up with headaches or noticed myself doing it during the day. But sure enough, I do notice that my teeth are fitting together at odd angles and some are shorter than they’re supposed to be.

Another reason I got Invisalign braces is to align my teeth. Due to my wisdom teeth that are fully in, my front teeth on both levels are crowding a little. Not a lot, but enough for me to notice in pictures and whatnot. In the past few years, I’ve been weirdly self-conscious about my mouth. Not only do I have a small mouth, but when I smile, my upper gums can be really visible (I don’t like that, it makes me look like I’m missing a whole row of teeth). Also, one time a few years ago, this guy I knew took it upon himself to tell me for no reason that I “have really big front teeth.” I laughed it off but since then I’ve also been a little self-conscious about that. In the grand scheme of things, my teeth are overall fine and I know that, but I can wish for perfection, can’t I?

man holding a piece of paper with a smile drawn on it over his mouth

So I figured that if these braces can help lessen the extent of my grinding all while making me look nicer, then I’m all for it!

I gotta say, it’s kind of funny that I’m in the situation I’m in now because when I was younger, I wasn’t at all concerned or self-conscious about my teeth. I had a small gap in my front teeth and I remember my parents asking if I wanted real braces and I turned them down because I could drink through my gap and spit water at weird angles from it, and definitely did not want to get rid of that. It closed in over time.

Anyway, aside from the pain, the braces aren’t too bad. Like I said, they’re not too noticeable, I can still eat whatever I want (if I had to give up popcorn, this’d be a different story), and maintenance isn’t hard. I just have to take them off before I eat or drink, and keep them and my mouth clean. I’m sure the pain will subside soon enough, and I’ll get into a routine.

And that, my friends, is what’s going on in my mouth.

I’ll leave you with this classic song.

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Converter Or Remote?

Do you know what a converter is? If I asked you to hand me the converter, would you know what to give me? I’m going to guess that most people don’t know what that is, and that’s understandable.

‘Converter’ is Canadian-speak for TV remote, though I also found this Reddit thread that believes that it’s mostly an Ontario thing.

And that just boggles my mind. How does one province manage to almost collectively just use and understand another name for such a random object? I know there’s gotta be some cultural or linguistic explanation that I’m too lazy to really look into, but it is interesting.

Especially because personally I use both “remote” and “converter” interchangeably. They both feel so natural coming out of my mouth, which is weird because I’ve been trying to think about which one I use more or in what context and even I can’t separate the two in my thoughts. I think my family and I do use remote more, though perhaps that’s because I’ve also shortened remote to “mote” as in “mote me” when I want to be passed the remote. It’s what all the cool kids are saying.

Andy Bernard saying  Andy Bernard explaining

I did wonder if “converter” has roots in Britain, as a lot of Canadian terms and phrases do come from across the pond, but apparently not. Not that I’m wildly surprised, as there are actually several more words used to reference the small channel changing device. Clicker, Zipper, Flipper, Channel-Changer… What do you call it?

And this isn’t the only example. Just the other day I saw a post on Tumblr asking people what the thing you use to push groceries around at the store is called. I call them “shopping carts” but one girl I follow on Tumblr called them “buggies”.

It’s really kind of fascinating. I mean, not fascinating enough to change my major to linguistics (I took an introduction course two years ago, and no thank you) but it’s the kind of thing that you think about on the bus with an intenseness. How many things in our world have multiple names in the same language? And why? How does it catch on? Can I just start calling socks “feetos” now? Like, “Mom, I’m missing a feeto. Have you seen it?” Or am I not popular enough to have “feeto” be a thing?

I guess it’s like slang and internet lingo. Slang has also fascinated me, because I find myself using it both ironically and unironically. Who comes up with it, and how does it work its way into our vocabularies? What is it about slang that is so functional?

man asking "do you understand the words that are coming outta my mouth?"

Anyway, I wish I had the time or desire to look these questions up for you, but I do not, so all you get is this post of rambles. That, and an invitation to contact all your foreign friends and ask them what they think words mean or what they call things. It’s fun.

That’s all for now!

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