Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Gerber, Robin. “Beauty and Body Image in the Media.” www.media-awareness.ca

In this article, found online at the above address, I found shocking facts about women in our society today. Though mostly concerning teens and younger women, for example high school and college girls, it was appalling to face the facts. Gerber mentioned how society’s trend to reach perfection through looks, aids to the raising numbers of cases of anorexia, bulimia, low-self esteem and the development of unhealthy eating habits. He stated that the beauty which most women try to reach, are set at unattainable highs and that there are only a few out there in today’s society that have any chance of reaching such standards. Through this article, Gerber examines two sides of society’s affect on the appearance of women. Mentioning Self-Destruction and Self-Improvement, gives the readers a sense of awareness as how largely our society affects us individually, as women. He writes,

“The barrage of messages about thinness, dieting and beauty tells "ordinary" women that they are always in need of adjustment—and that the female body is an object to be perfected.”

Not only is this quote true, but it gives the readers a wake-up call. Don’t think of yourself as an object to be perfected, because you’re not.

P. McCabe, Marita. “Media influences on body image and disordered eating.” www.findarticles.com

Not only does society have an affect on an individual’s (here concerning women) self-esteem and confidence, but it affects cultures as well. McCabe mentioned how in most Western areas, the “ideal” image is shown to be extremely thin. It is important to recognize the differences with cultures and society’s influence on that specified culture because it is a huge difference in some. Not only does it have an overwhelming influence on cultures, but in race as well. White women described their ideal image to be much thinner than a black woman. This article will help me in my researching and to prove the undeniable influence of the media on women’s self-images.

Lightstone, Judy. www.edreferral.com/body_image.html “Improving Body Image.”

In this online article, Lightstone discusses how our (women’s) body image involves our own perceptions, emotions, imagination and physical sensations of our bodies. She lets her readers accept the fact that our bodies are ever changing and sensitive. Our self-image is affected greatly by our own self-esteem and is altered and dampened by our society and its expectations of a woman.

"If we place pornography and the tyranny of slenderness alongside one another we have the two most significant obsessions of our culture, and both of them focused upon a woman's body." -Kim Chernin

Developing an obsession with our appearance and images in society is not something that is taught or learned. It is also not something that you are “born with.” This obsession develops over time, through aging and our comparisons to others. She writes how our psychological boundaries develop early in life and though at a young age, we are still strongly affected without even knowing it. For example: being nurtured when you were a baby/child. If you are not used to touch, then that may cause you to have an insecure and foggy sense of your size and shape. It also may lead you to not allow others into your life on multiple levels, meaning intimately or not. In addition, a person, if depressed or experienced other anxieties or had an abusive childhood, may use their eating habits as a way out, or lack there of, meaning starvation. Concluding, she gave her readers the 3 A’s: Attention: refers to listening for and responding to internal cues. Appreciation: refers to appreciating the pleasures your body can provide. Lastly, Acceptance: refers to accepting what is, instead of longing for what is not.

Costin, Carolyn. “Sociocultural Influences on Eating, Weight and Shape.” (1999)

In this article, not only is it important to realize the influence that society has on women, but also to really know and understand some facts. Costin asks:

“What is the cause and effect when our female fashion models weigh 23 percent less than the average American female? What is the implication when adolescent girls are snorting cocaine, not to get high, but to lose weight? What has become of our society when 80 percent of fourth-grade girls report they are dieting, with 10 percent of those reporting the use of self-induced vomiting? What have we done to females who claim they would rather be dead than fat?”

“In an advertisement featuring an extremely thin model and the slogan, "Just the Right Shape," one wonders what is being sold, the body or the outfit? Media advertisements like these both reflect and shape our perceptions and standards of beauty.”

Later, Costin wrote how as the diets continue to get more and more popular with more and more advertisements, the number of women with anorexia increases. She states that young girls who judge themselves and are insecure or experience low self-esteem to so because of the young women they see in the media, being thin as a rail. She wrote that we tend to judge and base our shapes and sizes around what others look like. She follows up with that because women have gone through so much in the past and their “place” in society has varied over the years, politically, economically and so forth, thinness has come to not only symbolize control of oneself, but also wealth and freedom.

Hauser, Brooke. In Premiere Magazine, “The Girl Can’t Help It.” (2006)

This magazine is full of gossip and of course, up with the latest trends, but in this article, Lindsay Lohan was interviewed about her life in the eyes of everyone. The media has taken Lohan down some tough roads, as it was expressed in this article. She (Lohan) said that it’s hard living in front of a camera or having her life written down in magazines, such as this one.

“When Lohan arrives to a photo shoot for Premiere, she doesn’t so much walk as charge forward, leaving a “whoosh” where the memory of a ponytail might have been. After making a few introductions, she beelines towards the racks of clothes and rows of shoes. Before long, she is wearing nothing but curlers and a pair of sheer nude underwear, rummaging through various slips and dresses as a stylist yells, ‘Where are the chicken cutlets?’ Pins, emery boards and brushes are brandished as a tailor, a manicurist and a hair guru descends on Lohan, now outfitted and sitting under the lights.”

She is being all made up, to fit in with what society wants to see her as. Almost every interview with Lohan, she is asked about her dramatic weight loss. Her arms merely dangle to her sides and she barely fills her clothes out. One interviewer asked her if she threw up in the bathroom all the time. Hauser wrote on Lohan, “Before her 18th birthday, Lohan was fielding questions about the size of her breasts and whether or not they were real. Says Madsen, “I mean, nobody asks teenage boys, ‘Do you have pubic hair yet?’ ‘What size are your balls?’ Whereas they’ll ask a teenage girl, ‘Are you still a virgin?’”
This magazine article, not only supports the fact that women are viewed more as objects in society, but more importantly, that Lohan, after “growing up” has become subjected to society’s need of fitting in, being thin and beautiful; having that perfect shape.

R. Hirschmann, Jane and H. Munter, Carol. “When Women Stop Hating Their Bodies.” (1995)

Throughout this book, Munter and Hirschmann discuss heavily the affects of dieting and that it is not the diet that is the problem, but more the dieter. Following, they state though that it has now become a miracle if you can hear anyone say “I’m not dieting.” Women have become so obsessed with their weight they will do anything to “fit in” and “be thin.” The authors wrote:

“The message for women, in particular, is that our bodies are not right and that, in order to make them right, we must eat as little as possible. This message is prominently conveyed in the windows of shops all over this country, broadcast over the airwaves, and plastered on pages of magazines and newspapers.”

The authors wrote that as women become more and more powerful in our culture, they feel the need to be smaller, or as one may say, “less.” There was an ad discussed in this book for Dynatrim that read, “In 14 days be less of a person.” This book helped me realize how easily women succumb to the wants or needs of other people, without realizing what exactly they are doing to themselves as individuals. Hirschmann and Munter stated how women feel “bad” carrying around food, especially if it’s not “healthy.” One woman was interviewed while being on a diet and she received no bad looks or comments, and was eventually congratulated on her will-power. After her dieting was over, she had a small jar of M&M’s on her desk at her work and said she was shocked at the comments. This shows that women are expected to be thin and in shape. If they are not, then they should be prepared for looks and comments.

M. Berg, Frances. “Women Afraid to Eat.” (2000)

Frances wrote how, like previously stated in other sources, we cannot go anywhere without seeing beautiful, tall, thin women in advertisements or on television shows. This book, especially in Chapter 2 titled: Our Culture Fails to Nurture Women, discusses how the “average” woman is becoming smaller and smaller.

She wrote:

“It is a slimmer, more dissipated vision…reedy, women with hollow curves and sinewy lines…small, frail-looking…wan and disengaged…austere as the times…human coat hangers…Clothes fall off them.”

Year by year, women, for example in Playboy and Miss America Pageant are representing the five percent of women who are actually that small. What about the other 95% of us out there? Who will represent that real average woman? Today, models have 25% less body fat than the average woman. A massive increase from the earlier and much lower number of only 5%. Dr. David Greenfeld, a medical director of the Yale-New Haven Hospital Adolescent and Young Adult Treatment Unit commented, “Pathologically underweight women are being held up as cultural ideals.” Once again, how is that helping our society, when there are so few of them making it that much harder to connect with our “models?”

Chernin, Kim. “The Obsession: Reflections of the Tyranny of Slenderness.” New York, (1981)

In this book, Chernin discuses the woman’s obsession to be thin; that we go to extreme matters to achieve the “ultimate, accepted” look in today’s society and culture. She wrote how it all traces back to when we were born. Our first touch, as children, was the feeling of leaving our mothers body, and from that moment, developing our own. She wrote how it was important to realize this, because our first touch not only is in women, but it is the same touch to men. Later, she mentions how men in our society, even wish for women to be smaller for the mere fact that if they were bigger, it reminds them of their inferiority and how they CAME from a woman, so they should be equal to them. Not only does our society and our surroundings make women feel insecure, but to a point where we feel, literally, “less.” Not only does this add to our self-esteem, says Chernin, but it aids to the increase of depression and insecurities around the world of women.

McPhee, Larkin. “Dying to be Thin.” Boston (2000)

This is not a textbook or an online article. The listed above is a movie of a young girl who is “dying to be thin.” She is fourteen years old, looks at herself in the mirror and says, “I see somebody that is fat and ugly and a disappointment.” McPhee adds that she is like a growing number of girls in America who are afflicted with eating disorders. She states that because we (women) fear of being fat, this fear has only aided in the numbers increasing to nearly eight million people torturing themselves, sometimes even to death.
McPhee states that,

“…because we are influenced by waif-like images of popular actresses, models, dancers and celebrities, young girls become obsessed with an unattainable image of perfection.”

Unattainable is the word here. Why be so obsessed when we know that the goal of being, “waif-like” or “model worthy” is an unreachable goal. The movie is narrated by Susan Sarandon, following young girls who are seeking recovery from their obsessive lives or who have conquered their disease and have finally seen that such a goal is not worth it.

Mickelsen O, and Taylor, H L. www.edauk.com 2005

This question and answer form on www.edauk.com allows readers to know that the average model weighs much less than the average woman not in the modeling business and that to reach this goal, it is nearly impossible. They write that more than 90% of eating disorders occurs in women, and nearly half of that is due to the undying need to be thin that media puts out to young girls in magazines, TV shows etc. And in the past three decades, this number has nearly doubled. If the media and multiple advertisements continue to say that being ‘fat’ is okay, then why do they use nothing but the tall, thin beautiful women in their advertisements, especially when being so is unreachable to many girls out there, especially teenagers who appear to be the most vulnerable and influential.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Prewriting to Generate Ideas


After reading through all of my text books, articles in the magazines or the online sources I have come across while doing this research for our paper, I have been shoked and appauled on how low women feel. How society makes us feel. It is damaging to my self-esteem and I'm sure, many others as well. Why do we let ourselves feel this way? Why do we allow ourselves to change the way we are, what we do or how we feel about ourselves just because we see a twenty year old blonde model, frail and pale, strutting down the runway? And because they are our ideals and we have to be like them, we change completely. We tend to go to the extremes past dieting to anorexia purging. Though we know it's unhealthy and unnecessary, we continue to do it to ourselves, and nowadays, it's worse than it was before. I feel that it's so frustrating to be a girl in today's society, disregarding race, religion or weight! We are expected to be a certain type and shape, when it's obvious that that cannot happen. What are people thinking? Going to all of those extremes to fit in. Is it really that important that you would do that to your body and yourself in general, just to loose a few extra pounds here and there? Why can't you just be happy with what God gave you, with what you have and who YOU are? I understand, some of us may want to loose some weight here and there, but go to the gym, and if it's out of your control, see a doctor, trainer, anyone who you think could help you out.


Action: Over the past years, women in society have lowered their self-esteem and subjected themselves to the media and what others see as being "perfect."
The results have been that the number of cases dealing with eating disorders have sky-rocketed. If this continues, I feel as though it will lead to suicide rates increasing too, because as one woman said, " I rather die than be fat."
Motive: Women are dying to be perfect and thin. Through the media and publicity in todays world to "be thin", women who aren't that size 0 or 2 feel disgusted with themselves and want a dramatic change as soon as possible.
Method: This action has been occuring over the past decades. Women have always found something wrong with their bodies and in my opinion, will continue to. They accomplish this action by binging, purging, anorexia, ballemia, diet pills, fad diets and even starvation!!!
Actors: Everyone can be involved in this, but society mostly deals with women. Everyone is affected! Not only you, but the people who care about you and who wish to help you. I do not think anyone in specific caused these actions to occur because it is a psychological idea in your head. You are the one who sees yourself the way you do so YOU have to be able to not judge yourself so harshly and to change if that is what you want, but take a smart way to do it. It's all for yourself. You shouldn't do anything to your body for anyone else, ever.
Setting:This has been occuring over decades and decades, but now, it is just worse. It takes place all around the world, from Australia to Canada. The only feelings I can put with such a situation is that it's so sad to see people starve themselves just to be accepted by others. Their desperate minds and hearts don't know what else to do besides try their best to fit in. The only happy ending is when that person can be helped and achieve their goal in a safe and healthy weight loss.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

"I am the wisest woman you've ever met...I am the kindest soul with whom you've grown attached...I have the bravest heart that you've ever seen and you've never met anyone as positive as i am sometimes...you see everything...you see every part...you see all my light...and you love my dark...you dig everything, of which I'm ashamed...there's not anything to which you can relate...and you're still here...I blame everyone else not my own partaking...My passive aggressiveness can be devestating...I'm the most gorgeous woman that you've ever known and you've never met anyone as everything as I am sometimes...But I resist, persist and speak, louder than I know...but I resist your love, no matter, how low or high I go...you see everything, you see every part...you see all my light and you love my dark...you dig everything...of which I'm ashamed..there's not anything to which you can relate, and you're still here..."-Everything, by Alanis Morissette.

I was listening to this song tonight and I just thought, you know, I have that person. My best friend goes to a community college in Harrisonburg. No, he's not the best person in the world, the nicest or the most polite, but he's the best person to dry my tears, to hug me when I need someone's embrace and the best EVER to make me laugh when I'm down. I just thought of him because I havent seen him in a while, and when I listened to this song, I remembered all that we had been through and all that has come from our friendship. How it has made me and him stronger people individually, and more accepting of each other really. We're so different, yet so similar. We have different morals, and I was raised a lot different than he was, or at least follow what my parents taught me and he doesn't as much, but at the same time, we're that pair that finishes each other's sentences, that tell the same jokes and laugh hysterically when everyone else in the room is silent because they don't get the joke. It's the best friendship I've had in a while and I couldn't be more grateful to have him in my life.

I guess what I'm saying is be happy with who you are and who accepts you for just that. Never let that person go because there aren't many people out in the world who will appreciate you for you. Don't merely accept it though, make sure it's reciprocated because obviously they deserve it if they give it to you, correct? I believe it's something to think about, and carefully.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Style: Lesson 2

Throughout Lesson 2, Williams discusses the importance of understanding words meanings correctly, their proper usage and the "rules" of writing. He reviews the rules and how they affect one's writing. I found this true because having to follow "rules" may limit one's writing. At least it tends to limit mine sometimes. I agreed with Williams with his following statement: "If writers we judge competent regularly violate some alleged rule, then the rule can have no force. In other cases, it's not writers who should change their usage but grammarians who should change their rules." I AGREE! As writers, it is hard to follow "rules", especially when our own individual characteristics and styles make us unique and different from other writers.

I learned a lot by reading this chapter, especially how to just make a paper flow better and the importance of words you decide to choose. It's helpful because that has always been a struggle for me, especially when I try to add, as Williams says, "class" to my paper. Using more educated words and expressions adds to that class. Other options he mentioned regarded the affect of geography on one's speech and writing preferences and styles. I found it rather interesting to really see the differences that are caused by one's location in writing. Lastly, when Williams wrote: "I suspect that those who observe all the rules all the time do so not because they want to protect the integrity of the language or the quality of our culture, but because they want to assert a style of their own." I truly feel that that is extremely importance in writing because of couse, as the writer and author, you want to stand out from all the others.

To sum it all up, I feel that this chapter was very helpful and I hope, with the information given, it will allow me to advance in my writing techniques and styles. It's important to explore and try new ways of writing because, I feel, that is the best way to learn "how to write".

Thursday, February 23, 2006

What makes us stay?

Recently, I have been talking a lot with my roomate about athletes in College. She is a swimmer, and as some may know, I play field hockey. Recently, it has just been extra stressful on me having practices four days out of the week (at 7 a.m) and then lifting five days and this weekend is going to be a long one because we have our first tournament on Saturday, from 8-4. Now remember, this is the off-season, also known as Spring Hockey. Our coach isn't even allowed to be at our practices yet, so the captains run it. I'm already scared for April to come because that's when the coaches appear for one month. That is, one month of complete hell. So, because I seem to complain so much, one may wonder, then why in the hell do you stay?

That right there. There mere question of my presence on the field, at practices or in the weight room. It's that last free hit, the last penalty shot, the second OT, the girl on the other team who just scored you, the ten extra pounds on the bench press, the icepacks on the legs. It's that last drop of salty sweat you feel falling off your chin as you face the goalie one on one in a break away. It's for your teammates, your coaches (whether you like them or not), it's for your highschool team that you played on, it's for your family to watch, your peers to admire. It's to stay in shape, to have those 48 hour rules so you can drive your drunk friends around even though you have practice in four hours. It's for your love of the game. It's for your heart. Not only is being an athlete a physical process and struggle, but more so, it's that voice in your head that says KEEP RUNNING when you can't even feel your legs. When your stick is hard to grip because your sweaty palms before the big game. It's for wishing there was a trashcan on the 50 yard line that you can throw up in.

For the remainining years that I plan on playing field hockey, and for all the years that I have played that have helped lead me up to this moment now, ONE practice has never left me. We had just one a game 8-0, absolutely dominating the entire game, and when it was over, our coach congradulated us on the win and gave us the news. Practice at 530-730 the next morning.
We did our warm ups in the dark, and waited for our coaches to get there. She got there, told us to drop our sticks (which is the LAST thing you want to hear when playing field hockey). She told us to line up on the end line. From there, we knew it was over.

One word: REPEATS. You have a minute to sprint to the end line, and jog all the way back under a minute. You have the remaining time to rest before the next one. Around 630 we stopped doing repeats. After the yelling of coach, telling us we could leave the field if we wanted to. We could take our jerseys off and quit and she wouldn't care, I honestly thought people would walk off. I even thought about it. Especially after taking so much attitude and shit from our coach, that early in the morning. Some people got sick, and the mere hearing of people throwing up, made others mid-sprint spew. It was cold that morning walking out at 515, but by 630 I've never been so drenched in my life. The sweat was overpowering, the water couldn't ease me quick enough. She brought us all over and gave a little speech. "Look around you, look at your teammates. In the eye, and tell me what you think of them. Tell me if they're strong, if they deserve to be here" and so on.

That practice lingers in the back of my head whenever there's anything to do with field hockey. So once again, why do I stay. Without it, I don't see myself being me. I owe it to myself to continue with my passion. I mean, after playing it since 4th grade, what else am I going to do?

Wednesday, February 22, 2006


I'm taking a German Drama class this semester. Why? I have no idea, but so far, it's been rather interesting. We just finished reading a play called, "The Weavers". Through out the play, The Weavers experience much loss. They have poor jobs, barely any food or clothing and the death rate has done nothing but increased quickly due to the poor living accomodations. Towards the end of the play, the weavers were so infuriated by their conditions, they decided they had had enough and raised against authority, meaning the upper class. One man, a pastor, asked a younger man, right after he had been arrested for assault, "Why do you do this? Have you forgotten what it is to be a real Christian. I baptised you and have seen you grow, and now I see you in handcuffs. Do you know how that makes me feel?" The younger man replied, "I've paid you".
First off, who would disrespect a Pastor like that? Secondly, what exactly does that mean? "I've paid you". Meaning, though he was baptised and has represented God all up to this point, because he paid the Pastor, that his "job" on Earth as being a Christian was now over?
Does money really mean that much? Now, in this case of The Weavers, it may because they were so poor and at desperate measures, desperate things have been done. But in general, to you and your family, does money mean everything? And if it does, then I would love to hear your argument for it. Yes, money can buy you multiple things in life, great things indeed. And, those things can bring you good things as well, such as happiness or popularity even. But in the end, will those THINGS be there for you? Will they listen to your problems and give you a shoulder to cry on? Will those materialistic things that money can get you in life, can they give you butterflies in the stomach, or make you so nervous and excited you can't even speak?
What is it about money that overwhelms us and can actually go to the extreme of ruining our lives? And, more importantly, why don't we recognize the power behind it? Is there anything we can do to stop it or is it just in us as individuals?

Tell me, have YOU ever been consumed by money? Has it ever hurt your life so badly that you didn't know what to do with yourself? Luckily, and honestly, I can say that I have not. I would love to hear the stories though if you guys have any. It was just a thought.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Because we have been dealing with controversies, I was thinking and realized how strong of an opinion I have on beliefs in homosexual marriages. So, I looked up a few things and here it is:

Over the years, homosexuals have obtained the same rights as every ‘regular’ person. But why is it that when it comes to the question of marriage, almost everyone objects? Homosexuals ‘deserve’ to be treated equally. They should not be shunned upon for who they are, what their gender is, or whom they love. Marriage is something indescribable. In my opinion, it’s the union of a man and a woman, two women, or two men, who love and cherish each other, who promise to take care of one another, through everything, until death do them part. It not only gives ‘forever’, but it also gives legal benefits as well.
Marriage, no matter whom it is shared by, acts as a fortification of a secure, dynamic society. It profits each person as being an individual in the relationship with granting legal privileges and by improving their economic, emotional, and physical health. Married couples are granted the right to file joint tax returns, notification and powers of decision in life-or-death situations for the other, shares of pensions and medical benefits, and extensive visitation in hospitals and jails. Studies show that marriage can act as a form of insurance against economic crises (Becker 1076), as well as improving the health and happiness of the partners involved (The Economist). Denying legal recognition on the basis of a single characteristic makes it easy to discriminate against everyone who shares that same characteristic.

Monday, February 20, 2006

For my blog today, I decided to change up my controversy after doing some editing. Here is the original version and below it one will find the edited one.

For my controversy, I have chosen to review the multiple varying body perceptions of women in our society today. As a female college student, there are many perceptions, not only here at Randolph-Macon College, but all around the world, that I see daily in my community. Constantly, I am reminded how some women feel about their body image. Not only do these feelings lead to eating disorders and very unhealthy lifestyles, but also severe cases of depression, and may even cause death. I feel that this is a good topic, not only because it affects me as an individual, but also the other girls who I live with and it also, may not affect men, but involves them. We do not only see ourselves as being too skinny, not toned enough or disgustingly overweight, but we have to also deal with the perceptions and “labels” that men in our community put on us. The controversy is merely asking: What should we, as women of this society, look like?In this community, we are constantly reminded on how we “should” be. With magazines, TV shows, “fab diets” and mirrors influencing our own self perception; one question lingers in our minds daily. “Do I look ok?” We leave our rooms, apartments or our nice New York condo’s wondering, “Do these pants make my butt look big? Does this shirt make my arms look pudgy?” or even go to the extreme, “Should I go and get a year long supply of spanx?” And multiple times, we merely throw on “comfortable clothes” which sometimes don’t even help our own self-perception.Not only are there varying perceptions, but in my community, there are many characteristics. They range from a biased view point all the way to different pant sizes. For example: Over the past five years or so, Abercrombie has made their sizes smaller and smaller, leaving the largest pant to only a 10. Size 12 is the average size of a woman.In this paper, I have strong hopes in allowing our society to see people for who they are and not hoping for what they may or may not become. It is important to have a strong self-image and to love who you are. If you cannot do that first, how is one able to love another? I hope that through this, people will see that difference is key to happiness, change is always welcoming and one's pant size, shouldn't make you who are you are.

edited/commented version:

As a controversy that affects my every day life, I have chosen to review the various body perceptions of women in the American culture. As a female college student, i believe there are many perceptions of the ideal body images for women, not only in our Randolph Macon community, but also around other parts of the world. Constantly, I am reminded of how some women feel about their body image. (how..give an example) Not only do these feelings of inadequacy and imperfection lead to eating disorders and unhealthy lifestyles, but to cases of depression and sometimes death. I feel that this is a good topic, not only because it affects me as an individual, but also the other girls who I live with and it also, may not affect men, but involves them (personnaly, i do not like this sentence...i think that it is good to introduce men into the discussion but think of a better sentence). some women in our society not only see themselves as being too skinny, not toned enough or disgustingly overweight, but they also have to deal with the views, oppinions and "labels" of men in our community and in our lives.. The topic at hand is merely asking: What should we, as women of this society, look like?
In this society, women are constantly reminded on how we "should" be. From US Weekly to America's Next Top Model, from The South Beach Diet to the mirrors in our homes... one question lingers constantly in our minds, "Do I look ok?" We leave our dorm rooms, apartments buildings or our House out in the country driving our minds crazy with thoughs such as, "Do these pants make my butt look big? Does this shirt make my arms look pudgy?" or even go to the extreme, "Should I go and get a year long supply of spanx?" Still, a step further, many times, we merely throw on "comfortable clothes" to hide our insecurities, only making us look worse.
Not only is there a variety of female body perceptions all around, but in my community, there are many characteristics (i would choose a different word..). They range from a biased view point all the way to different pant sizes. For example: Over the past five years or so, Abercrombie has made their sizes smaller and smaller, leaving the largest pant to only a 10. Size 12 is the average size of a woman. (this section is random and too brief...you should expand or delete)
The issue regarding female body perceptions is one, which i feel is ongoing. H aving briefly examined this controversy, i have strong hopes that our society will see people for who they are and not hope for something that has been airbrushed, paid for, or something that is just not going to be. It is important to have a confident perception of yourself and to love who you are. If you cannot do that first, how is one able to love another?

Sunday, February 19, 2006

For my controversy, I have chosen to review the multiple varying body perceptions of women in our society today. As a female college student, there are many perceptions, not only here at Randolph-Macon College, but all around the world, that I see daily in my community. Constantly, I am reminded how some women feel about their body image. Not only do these feelings lead to eating disorders and very unhealthy lifestyles, but also severe cases of depression, and may even cause death. I feel that this is a good topic, not only because it affects me as an individual, but also the other girls who I live with and it also, may not affect men, but involves them. We do not only see ourselves as being too skinny, not toned enough or disgustingly overweight, but we have to also deal with the perceptions and “labels” that men in our community put on us. The controversy is merely asking: What should we, as women of this society, look like?

In this community, we are constantly reminded on how we “should” be. With magazines, TV shows, “fab diets” and mirrors influencing our own self perception; one question lingers in our minds daily. “Do I look ok?” We leave our rooms, apartments or our nice New York condo’s wondering, “Do these pants make my butt look big? Does this shirt make my arms look pudgy?” or even go to the extreme, “Should I go and get a year long supply of spanx?” And multiple times, we merely throw on “comfortable clothes” which sometimes don’t even help our own self-perception.

Not only are there varying perceptions, but in my community, there are many characteristics. They range from a biased view point all the way to different pant sizes. For example: Over the past five years or so, Abercrombie has made their sizes smaller and smaller, leaving the largest pant to only a 10. Size 12 is the average size of a woman.

In this paper, I have strong hopes in allowing our society to see people for who they are and not hoping for what they may or may not become. It is important to have a strong self-image and to love who you are. If you cannot do that first, how is one able to love another? I hope that through this, people will see that difference is key to happiness, change is always welcoming and one's pant size, shouldn't make you who are you are.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Lesson 1

Lesson 1 consisted of multiple teachings of writings. Williams talked a lot about the styles of writing, what the aims and principles of those writings were and the importance of rewriting and editing. In the beginning of Lesson 1, Williams introduced to us a brief history of writing. For the Past, he wrote of the importance of simplicity. I found it very helpful and also comforting to hear that simplicity is what we should aim for in our writings. I have often sat at my computer or desk with a pen and paper, trying to think of that one word that would make my paper or thesis sound so intellectual, when if I just get my point across for my readers, it will aid in the connection between writer and reader develop quicker and better. For the Present, I feel comforted too when he quoted C. Wright Mills on The Sociological Imagination, "Such a lack of ready intelligibility, I believe, usually has little or nothing to do with the complexity of thought. It has to do almost entirely with certain confusion of the academic writer about his own status."
I feel that he is trying to tell the reader that one's writing has to do a lot with the writers confidence behind his or her work.

Later in the Lesson 1, he continues on the importance and necessity of the connection between the writer and the reader. It is important to make a connection early on so the reader can understand and develop a better sense of the writer. He wrote, "You will write more clearly once you more clearly understand your subject and readers." I liked how he wrote, "Perfection is the ideal, but the enemy of done." It comforts the reader because it tells them that perfection is hard to come by and rare to obtain and how it's an enemy, but with certain writers and their writings, it may appear without conscious effort. But it will not happen unless the reader practices rewriting.

At the end of Lesson 1, he wrote on how people cannot be taught how to write and how there are no rules. Though one may have a strong sense of self and emotions, that doesn't mean they can write that out, and if they do not have the emotions or abitlity to express their thoughts, writing may help them do so. "Rules" of writing cannot help a person do this. I guess it's that natural talent if you have it or not?

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Sexual Mood

Messy messy hair
Poisonous brown eyes
Smiles full of trickery
Mind filled with lies

But you’re never really affected
By the people that you hurt
Until the long strings of your heart
Are the ones that felt a jerk

You’re selfish and unbarring
Intolerable and rude
But in the end for some reason
You put me in that ‘sexual mood’…thank you

Blurry Eyes

Words are lost
Pictures fade
My heart is torn
In so many ways

To forgive and forget
Is it truly a choice?
I need to say something
But I stand here, a lost voice

Emotions cant express
The way my head spins
My body and soul to you
I offered to lend

You kept on asking
Yet, no answers from me
Then when it’s gone
I don’t understand, why I didn’t see

I thought it’d be nice
You and I at a chance
But my luck again lost
Blurry eyes at a glance…

I thought I would put these two together because I felt that there was a connection between the two. I feel as though they work off of each other. I'm sure we've all been in those situations with our loved one or our crush, where you think it's all fine because you were blinded by your love or obsession for them. Then when it all happens and the "world ends" as you think at the time, you think, "I'm such an idiot." I've been in those situations and I just thought, now that I've grown out of those relationships and moved on, I wasn't an idiot. I ignored all of my friends advice and went for a relationship with a guy that had "that rep" that, a lot of times, willing to admit or not, a lot of girls fall for: the bad ass. Or, just the asshole. I even ignored my Dad. Then and there I should have known better. But if I didn't go with my heart, I would have never learned how to "protect" myself from all of that. I wouldn't be the one my friends go to for advice, I wouldn't know what I know today and most importantly, I wouldn't have half the friendships I have now. I've cried the tears, I've cursed the world and in the end, I can wake up and smile knowing it's a new day and I am surrounded by people who love me for who I am and there's nothing to worry about.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

J2/ Growing up, you belonged to several communities, but the most obvious one was probably the community that you lived in...your neighborhood. As a young adult, you are moving away from that community and entering others. Help your classmates and me visualize the communities that you belong to as the neighborhood where “You” currently reside. In other words, if “You” were neighborhood, comprised of different houses with residents inside of them which represent the different communities that you consider yourself part of, what would it look like? From the list of communities that you wrote down for Journal 1, choose 4-6 communities and describe them as houses on “You” street. In order to help us truly understand the nature of these communities—their members, their shared beliefs, and the tensions/controversies within them—you may want to begin by freewriting about the following questions (adapted from Thomas Deans):
*What factors define the group (geography, age, interests, ethnicity, shared history, values, etc.)?
*How did this community come into being? What is its history? How does that history shape current practices and attitudes?
*How do you gain membership to this community? Can anyone join? Is it by invitation only?
*What are the rewards/costs of membership?
*Describe any characteristic language practices of this community. Do members use special terms/language? Do they assign new meaning to terms?
*What characteristics or “patterns of sameness” characterize community members (dress, rituals, behavior, values, etc.)?
*What tensions/controversies/areas of disagreement exist within the community? How are these areas negotiated or represented to outsiders?
*How might definitions of this community differ if they were told by insiders and outsiders respectively?
*How did you come to be a member of this community?

Neighborhood 1:
I am the house at the bottom of the hill, your first left right after you take a right through the two stone pillars after one hell of a drive over a curvy mountain road. I'm not too old, still have spirit, but a few rough spots on the outside appearance. I wouldn't say my community is full of rich, snobby people at all, but some would. My neighboring house is a little house, grey, down the road from me. Absolutely adorable with the nicest people I've ever come into contact with. Mostly everyone here is nice, always welcoming and everyone knows everyone for the most part. They are relaxed and understanding of similarities, but more importantly, people's differences. Many people, mostly the children, participate in my local swim team, the Stingrays. Such a good group of kids; well-rounded and full of life. Though not much space is available, there is no fee to joining this community, only benefits of meeting and being able to interact with the people and enjoy the most gorgeous view of the Blue Ridge Mountains you've ever laid eyes on.

Neighborhood 2:
Kids are everywhere! The local nursing home has just been visited by an ambulance, and we hope everything is okay. The middle schoolers have their recess and the high schoolers are enjoying their hour long lunch break wisely. In this community, you must have a certain "status" and meet particular requirements to join. There is a strict dress-code, limiting the uniform to merely, khakis, collared tucked in shirts, belts, and nice shoes. No facial piercings, and please, for the sake of everyone around, take care of your hygiene. This community came into existence actually through the leadership of my grandfather, followed by many knowledgable and helpful people who cared about their surrounding community and the children in it. Through most of it's history, it has followed, for the most part, the same beliefs, routinely days and practices as from the start. Any ethnicity, race or religion preference is welcome, as long as they abide by the set rules. Some problems, like in any community, do tend to arise, but nothing horribly problematic and if it is, then it is immediately and directly taken care of by the "neighborhoods" staff, parents and peers. Many see me, this neighborhood to consist of snobby rich people who think they are the best. Me personally, not at all. But, often, though an individual in a community may be different than that of it's community, it is that community that is "judged" (as a whole) until further recognition is given to the individual.

Neighborhood 3:
Take a right down Moreland Rd. It's an old gravel road, consisting of potholes and barely enough room for passing cars to even drive on. Go down that road about two miles and there you will find me. Out in the middle of the country, where, from me(house on Little Cobbler Mountain) you can see nothing but the view. I mostly consist of "country folk" and "hillbillies", but all with good intentions at heart. Here, very few controversies arise and anyone and everyone is welcome; as long as their cars can handle the drive there. The mountain in itself has been passed down through generations, over the past years, of the Doeller family, now in control of Marshall Doeller. Me, this little old house? I just came into existence a little over five years ago. We are not sure of any of the pracitces shared in this community to be honest with you, but that is only because we have maybe two neighbors surrounding us, and only knowing one. No one really judges us here, some are even jealous because we have this amazing site we get to wake up to each morning, and they are stuck in the country or in town, with streets and loud noises surrounding their eardrums. If told by outsiders? Let's see. They'd probably say I was just a regular neighborhood, just on the other side of town.

Neighborhood 4:
Some of the teachers don't even care if you come to class, as long as you dn't have to repete their course, they're fine with whatever you do. You constantly hear over and over in your head again: "You're an adult now. You can make your own decisions." Like other neighborhoods similar to me, many problems exist, inside and out. From the inside, conflicts with races, genders, religion preferences...all of the above basically. Some may be more apparent then others, but the mere fact that they exist is just upsetting. From the outside, I am sure people see me as being a snobby, rich, private neighborhood. But again, like others neighborhoods, to be in this one, one must have certain crudentials and meet certain standards to join. It shouldn't be too hard, just try. The ages range anywhere, well, we've had a 14 year old up to, I would guess maybe a 23 year old. It has many shared values, and also many different ones, and most of the time, I am not afraid to express them. I would say that many people in my neighborhood have their own language, but it may only be shared by a descrete few. My story of becoming a member of this community? It's actually pretty simple. I love it here. Through all the complaints and temper tantrums I express, I would not want to be anywhere else.
In “Community, Commitment, and Individuality,” Bellah et al argue that community involvement leads to and fosters civic individualism/civic engagement. Think about the example of Angelo Donatello, who found that embracing his individual heritage as an Italian-American compelled him to join not only a local chapter of the Sons of Italy but also inspired him to become a civic leader in Boston. Think also about Cecilia Dougherty, whose sense of civic engagement—her desire to help the “have nots have power that reflects their numbers” (pg. 84)—extends from her awareness of her private life, i.e. the values instilled in her by her parents as well as her struggles as a widowed housewife with four children. Make a comprehensive list of the many communities—large/small, formal/informal, serious/silly—that you consider yourself a part of. For each community, reflect on what has led you to participate in these communities. Did you join a particular community because it reflected the values you were raised with (such as a religious youth group or)? The values/interests you are beginning to embrace on your own (such as a “simple living” club or a “literary society”)? The values/interests of your peers (such as a ‘greek’ organization or a “Maroon 5” fan club)? To what degree is your membership in these communities an extension of private and/or social aspects of your personality? Please explain.

Through out my past years, I have been merely in three main communities. One being the first house I lived in as a child. It was in Bellevue, a small neighborhood where everyone seemed to get along very nicely, out in the country.

My sister and I belonged to a swimteam there, at our local pool. Every morning in the summer, we'd rise and shine nice and early, only to get there so we could do kicks and turns and chat with all of our friends from around the neighborhood. It was one of the best things for kids in our community because everyone did it and it was a chance to meet new people too! Through this activity, my sister and I met some of our best friends til this day. I believe, because I was so young at the time, that I joined the swimteam partially because of my parents and because they thought it would be a good idea and something fun for me to participate in during the summer. On the other hand, I wanted to be a part of our local swimteam. Now, we may not have been the greatest and strongest team in the league, but we did try and it consisted of a lot of fun, good kids. I joined it because I love to swim, as did the other children on the team. But there was something else to it besides the mere dedication of a middle schooler swimmer. It was the fun summer nights and being out past bedtime just to swim in one last meet. The free watermelon and the laughs with the friends. And funny enough as to how it worked out this way, but all the way up to my present day now, I still found myself being in a community, or groups or activities with shared interests of others, and even, similar beliefs.

In high school, I participated on three to four sports teams for four years straight. Through out these teams, I shared experiences and learned of others. I met new people, made friends and lost friends, but mostly, I learned a lot about myself and the "community" behind me. I also was involved in our Big sister-Little sister program, where I tutored and was a mentor to a few girls who had just entered my high school as beginnning freshmen. Not only did this help them develope a sense of self, but helped me in developing a sense of community, commitement and individuality. I say that because of the following:

Community: To me, you should not let your community down. We are all equal do'ers and go'ers in the community and should take a fair part in it. That is also where commitement falls in.
Commitement: If you say you are going to do something, and do not do it, not only do you let yourself down in the end, but adopt the chance of letting down other people in your surroundings; in your community as well.
Individuality: I feel that through your experiences with other people, that is the best way to learn the most about yourself.

I suppose one could say that I have joined and experienced such varied communities because of all the reasons: parents, peers and my own beliefs and interests which I have developed over the years. One cannot be entirely dependent on one thing, or certain that one thing may happen or not. And, of course, we always change our minds. We may not always get along with the people in our community surrounding us, but at the same time we may. I believe that the community, as a whole, is ONE individual, but if you take that one apart piece by piece and learn the different parts of that one individual, than, of course, that leaves you with multiple individuals, making you, an individual. Life throws you curveballs, and I feel that it's your reaction to that throw which makes you that peice of that individual, and individually being your own. For example: I see myself as outgoing, loud, fun and bluntly spoken. I view myself to be that way, not only because my father is extremely like that, but also because I have been told and looking back and even to this day, I tend to surround myself around people who share those common qualities.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

decisions, decisions, decisions...

This past year, as a returning sophomore, I decided to take up my favorite sport again after having a year off. I played field hockey for Randolph-Macon College and wore the uniform proudly. It was a stuggle firstly because I was a year behind on my skills because I took a year off from playing ever since fourth grade all the way to my last year in high school. I will admit though, even after pre-season had ended, when it FINALLY did, it was worth it. It gave me a sense of relief and helped me manage my time better, and made me feel more worthy of me rewarding myself of course. Though one problem is still in my mind. Should I play again this year?

One is probably thinking after reading that paragraph, how could you not? It's obvious that you love the sport and you must be good after playing for so long! Right? No, not really. This past year has been a struggle with hockey. Do not misinterprete my love for the game, because that I have a huge passion for, but the bigger problem is the coach. All throughout my field hockey career, I have had a coach who I absolutely admire and look up to in every possible way. Now, it may be just because I am playing on a college level and am just not used to the "intensity" that the sport now brings to me. But, shouldn't the coach be the mature person here? Shouldn't she make an effort as well? Towards the end of the year, the last thing that I wanted to happen, happened. I started to not enjoy playing field hockey.

I told my dad before even deciding to play, that that was my one main concern, but he garaunteed me that if I put enough heart into the sport that I had in the past, things would be fine and settle out. Not only was he wrong, but because we have already started spring hockey and that I know it will continue through until the end of this semester, I have already started to dread going to practices and lifting sessions, with only two practices under my belt. But, the question still lingers. To play or not to play? Can I get over my problems with the coach, put them behind me and just play the game I love to play? Bust through this spring semester, get back into the best shape anyone could be in and make the best of it, but only to enjoy another shortly lived summer, and return here in August to start another season? Would you play a sport that you love even though someone who would be with you every day, as your coach and partially your mentor, was one that you disliked?

Who knows...any suggestions?

Monday, February 13, 2006

Time to reflect:
Just because it's Valentines Day tomorrow. What exactly defines love? In the dictionary, it states that love is:
A deep, tender, ineffable feeling of affection and solicitude toward a person, such as that arising from kinship, recognition of attractive qualities, or a sense of underlying oneness.
A feeling of intense desire and attraction toward a person with whom one is disposed to make a pair; the emotion of sex and romance.
Sexual passion.
Sexual intercourse.
A love affair.
An intense emotional attachment, as for a pet or treasured object.
A person who is the object of deep or intense affection or attraction; beloved. Often used as a term of endearment.

Yes, all of those seem correct. But let's think about it. Almost anyone can have "love" for something or some one, so what makes it so special? What makes it to where it needs it's own holiday? I feel that love is something indescribable. It's something so strong it makes you weak, something so warm and fuzzy it makes you want to puke, yet something so out of this world, you can't even speak the words you want to when you want to. So, if you truly love that "special someone" why is it necessary to go "all out" on just Valentines day? By no means am I suggesting that you go and buy a dozen roses a day and take her to dinner every other night, but honestly? What makes it so different?
But to be this honest, it still doesn't make up for the lost times right? Meaning, you know when you have been in love and when you havent. So, here's another question to ponder over. What makes you fall out of love? Do you start realizing that that "special someone" holds certain qualities that you despise and that you did not see before because you were so in love to begin with?
I guess what I am trying to say here is, for tomorrow, everyone do me a favor. Remember what love is, regardless of whether or not you have a "love" in your life. Realize that you have the people in your life right now because they care for you and you for them. Realize that some "loves" may fade, while others will only grow and continue with you forever. Be happy and glad that you are loved by others and never forget what it feels like. Because if you never allow yourself to love, then you will have never lived. You may get hurt, but it's that first feeling of it that sets you free. Without love in our lives, we have nothing.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

2) Write two shorter essays (3-4 paragraphs each) using only one type of appeal (argument from any one of the following: heart, values, character, reason) for each essay. So, if you write one essay that is "all heart", your second essay might be all reason. Again, you may use logical fallacies if you think that they will help you convince your reader. Identify which appeal you are using in each essay ahead of time (i.e. Essay 1: Argument from the heart) Be sure to identify your audience before you write your essay. (i.e. Audience: Dr. Malesh OR Audience: The Chronicle of Higher Education OR Audience: My Mother to whom I am explaining why I got a "C" in my writing class).

Argument of values and character
Audience: the Randolph-Macon Community

I am here today before you all, not only to help you understand where I am coming from with my following appeal, but also to bring light to the situation at hand. Over the last few years or so, it has been brought to America's attention with problems concerning the Pledge Of Alligence in schools. The main concern with allowing the Pledge of Alligence to be recited in school, is the line "...under God." Now, when trying to decide on whether or not we should continue to say the Pledge of Alligence, to me, resides on one question in my mind. What's the problem with it? Why not?

Throughout multiple cultural differences and having many years passed, NOW everyone decides there's a problem with saying, "...under God"? I am not sure I fully understand. I feel as though people make this into a bigger "problem" then it should be viewed as. No one is asking or forcing someone to say it. To me, if you do not wish to recite the Pledge of Alligence, then don't. But you should not discriminate against people who believe in it and choose to recite it with meaning and heart.

I suppose I just do not comprehend how it just "came up" really as being a huge problem and causing so much controversy. Throughout our history, we as Americans have held certain standards, accompanied by our own, (though shared), values and character. Do not judge someone for being different, and do not shy yourself from society if you are different. People in America hold different and similar values as one's neighbor, it is that character that resides in us all that bring us together, yet make us individuals we are.

I am not asking to change the world, and recite the Pledge of Alligence whenever you see the American Flag. What I am asking of you is to keep a good head on your shoulders, and do what you see fit and feel in your heart is right. Follow what you believe in. Do not do something just to fit in, be different and be yourself. With that, we will be happier individuals, but a stronger society because of the honesty we hold with ourselves and each other.

Thank you
2) Write two shorter essays (3-4 paragraphs each) using only one type of appeal (argument from any one of the following: heart, values, character, reason) for each essay. So, if you write one essay that is "all heart", your second essay might be all reason. Again, you may use logical fallacies if you think that they will help you convince your reader. Identify which appeal you are using in each essay ahead of time (i.e. Essay 1: Argument from the heart) Be sure to identify your audience before you write your essay. (i.e. Audience: Dr. Malesh OR Audience: The Chronicle of Higher Education OR Audience: My Mother to whom I am explaining why I got a "C" in my writing class). -> Arguement of values

Audience: Our local school board in my hometown, regarding the "problems" with saying the prayer in schools.


My name is Michelle Doeller, from Warrenton, Va. I have been living there and have grown into the person I am today, always residing in Warrenton. My family is from there, from as far as I can think and recently, over the past few years, I have grown up, and have realized and been able to see the multiple changes throughout my society, in which I live. The main reason I am writing this to you, is not to tell you about how my society has changed, because, well I believe you already know how things in our society have changed over time. The mere reason of this letter is to tell you of my concern with the problem(s) of prayer.

I am not only writing this to you because I am a young student, who many people have probably viewed as just that. A teenager, who doesn't know any better. But it is important to me to express my concern with the unjustifiable reasonings for NOT allowing the children in schools to say the prayer. Now you may be wondering, "well, why should it matter, you were allowed to say it in your school correct? So it shouldn't affect you". And, you are correct in part that I was and still am today at Randolph-Macon College, allowed to say the prayer. But just because I am, doesn't mean it still doesn't affect me as a human being.

I feel that by not allowing our children, to express their beliefs freely and to put a lock down on what can and cannot be said regarding religions is ridiculous. Now, let me continue by saying I am not saying that prejudices and racists remarks against one's religion should be tolerated, but at the same time, I am saying it is important to learn of others cultures and religions, and through prayer, many people connect. Multiple prayers may not be said the same way, or carried out in the same order, but that's just it! You learn from each other and about yourself at the same time. What about "your prayer(s)" makes you different and/or similar to your peers with "their prayer(s)?"

Another important factor in my argument is that we must not forget about our freedom of speech. It is unfair and to some points, racists to not allow students to be expressive. Of course, there should be limits, but I do not see a problem with saying the prayer in school! If a student feels uncomfortable, I am not asking them to participate in saying the prayer, but to just not be prejudice or rude to those who do participate in it. I am also not asking the students to convert religions, just to be accepting of others religious differences.

I appreciate your time and hope you will consider this subject at hand with an open mind.

Thank you


Michelle Doeller

Friday, February 10, 2006

By taking this class, I have high hopes in improving my writing skills, not only in essays, but also in free-style writings and research papers. I wish to organize my documents more effectively, allowing my readers to understand exactly what I am thinking. I want to be able to make that connection with my readers that only they can feel and understand by reading what I write. I feel that having that connection is important because it allows the reader to have an understanding of someone, the writer, that no one else can claim unless they read the writers' work. Regarding my prior knowledge with this class, I have none. I have not talked to anyone about this class, so I really have no idea what to expect. I wanted to take this class because I feel as though it will improve my writing. Also, I hope to persue a career that will involve writing. Another reason is because writing helps me stay focused and helps me release, I feel as though it is important to be able to do so in the best way possible. I am not only looking forward to improving my style of writing, whatever style that may be, but also learning of others. Not only do I hope to be more powerful in my writing, but hopefully if I do pick up a new style of writing, to be able to leave this semester with confidence in that new style as well. The most important thing I hope to leave this classroom with is organization and confidence in my writing. I feel as though I have good ideas, but may have trouble organizing and expressing them efficiently and sufficiently. The one thing I am most nervous about is failure. I came into college with a fairly good confidence level with my writing, mostly receiving A's and B's on my papers, and the first paper I received back in college was a C and that was a major shock for me, so I'm really hoping to improve my cnofidence, once again not only to improve my own style of writing, but to have enough confidence to try a new style.
All about YOU

Your dirty jeans
And soft T-shirt
Your backwards hat
And your cute little smirk

Your eyes of blue
Your teeth of white
Your two pierced ears
I melt at each sight

Your simple laugh
And your strong hugs
Your loud ass car
And your words of love

Your quiet whispers
Your messy hair
All in all
It’s just your stare…
Yesterday in Estes, along with all the other delightful smells, there was one that stood out to me. They were serving up apple cobbler. Granted, it wasn’t my dad’s homemade, but the mere scent of it made me homesick. It just captured all my senses, from when I first walked into Estes that evening, from when I first smelt it, saw it and even when I came back to my room, it was still with me. This may sound a little awkward, but the whole “reunion with apple cobbler”, reminded me of my family. Not only because we all enjoy apple cobbler, but because the cobbler was something that stayed with me that whole night; like my family. I say that they are similar, the apple cobbler and my family, with a few differences here and there, because regardless who you are, who you become, where you are or what you’re doing with your life, your family will always be there for you. Now of course, apple cobbler is not the exact same, but it stayed with me that night. The scent of it captured all of my senses. It took me back to being at home in front of the fireplace in our kitchen, with my family.
I started to enjoy writing when I was in high school. I was struggling with some certain things and it was really my way of escaping reality, or expressing my dissapointments with it. I feel as though I have the potential to be a very strong writer, but often find myself struggling on simple things and receiving careless errors. I find a lot of my strengths in poetry, and not so much in writing essays. I do enjoy writing almost anything though, especially opinions or expressions on related materials. Free-writing is one of my favorites, I believe that is why I enjoy and feel most confident in writing poetry. Many of my weaknesses in writing come from mumbling on and on about something, when really I just need to get to the point of things. Another is that I often go around the question and do not answer it to it's entirety. From when I wrote my first essay or first paper, and until now, I have always been taught to do drafts. Not only do they help with peer editing, but they also help you see your own mistakes and help you improve for your final paper. I have never been the type to just do a paper an hour before it is due. I get too worried about procrastinating that much, but I will admit that I have pulled an all-nighter to finish one or two. When it comes to doing the rough drafts though, I usually like to write out my ideas and then type them into a rough draft. I do not usually keep a sest way of writing in mind when I write or before I write an essay and or paper, but if there are outlines provided I follow them, and sometimes I will make my own to follow.
When I was working out the other day at the Brock, I noticed everyone who was in the gym, they were barely working out. It seemed to me to be considered more of a social hour, rather than a useful workout area. It seemed to be more of a meeting place, used to catch up on the latest gossip. Yes, I will admit I like to talk to people in there, but don’t get carried away and forget why I’m there. I even saw one younger girl; names of course go unmentioned, just talking to some “hottie” the whole time. I honestly don’t even think she touched a machine. Well, besides her “hottie” when she gave him hugs over and over again. He was awfully muscular. But I just don’t understand. Maybe it’s just me, but does it bother anyone else? I just feel like it sets out a bad vibe towards some girls. We are girls, girls who work out and go to the gym and stay healthy. If you’re just going to go in there, at least stay off the machines so other people can use them. Go gossip somewhere else.
I seem to be finding everything in order here!

Wednesday, February 01, 2006