Monday, January 31, 2011

Penny for My Thoughts: Writing Prompts

What is silence to you?

Silence is the absence of the sound.
It is what I value when I'm home alone in a determined mood, on a day off, to study and get some good homework done. I cannot focus with music on, sadly, despite my love for it. I'll sit down at the kitchen table with my mechanical pencil and calculator all ready, notebooks neatly aligned, and I'll just GO. Focus focus focus. No facebook, no TV, no lunchtime. Productivity at its best.

A list of things I'll never do.

This is funny because I'm always making lists of things I WANT to do, and if we're going with crazy and wild experiences here, I can't think of anything that I'll completely rule out before giving it considerable thought. I can't say I won't ever go skydiving or audition to be on the Bachelor or fall in love with someone twice my age. I CAN say that I do not ever want to have a failed marriage - divorce is not an option. I will never get in a physical fight with anyone, mostly because I just couldn't bring myself to inflict pain on anyone else. But see, even then I don't know what the future will hold. If some bizarre situation arose where my family members were being held hostage and tortured and I had the chance to deck the person/persons responsible, I might have to do that. But who knows. 

If I could get anything in the world for my birthday, it would be...

An all-expense paid trip to Disneyland for me and some friends. The Disney theme parks are something I dream about too frequently for a 19 year old young adult. You'd think I'd never been, but we DID go to Disneyworld around the time that I was 12 or 13. Before that it had been a long time, so long that I don't even have correct memories, I would say. They are the foggy memories of the 3 year old version of me, where everything was magical and nothing could ever go wrong. I remembered what I wanted, which is not much. I'd love so much to go back again with my friends who desire that same type of magic that our youths brought us. After all, the older we become the further away from our childhoods we get, and now is the time to seize the opportunities before we stop stop loving what we once did. 

A joke that makes me laugh is...

What do a duck and a wagon have in common? They both have wheels. Except for the duck.

Did you know Helen Keller had a playground in her backyard? Neither did she. (yeah, I'm sick in the head.)

Two peanuts were walking down a dark alley at night. One was assaulted. (a salted! peanut! haha!)

What would you do if you were the President? 


What did you do before we had the internet? 

That was so long ago, relative to my lifetime, that
a) I don't really remember, and 
b) It is incomparable to life WITH the internet, because I was at a totally different age group where it didn't matter. 

I believe I got an e-mail address for the first time in 4th grade, and started IM-ing in 6th or 7th. Before the complete social network boom, I occupied myself with dance twice a week, extra dance in my free time, golf when I was little, and sewing lessons when I was even littler. I read a lot in my tween/teen days. During the summer we went to the pool. Yeah ... that's all I can think of.

Think of a time when you've won something. Tell what you won and how you won it.

First instinct was to talk about the sweepstakes I enter online sometimes. A while back I heard about a sweepstakes for Pottery Barn Teen on the internet and I probably spent an hour or two in one day just repeatedly filling out the form to enter over and over again. I ended up winning one of the smaller prizes, a $75 gift card, which I used to buy a nice duffle bag that I still use and lend to my mom sometimes. 

But the point of this question was probably to get at some accomplishment I'm proud of, and I guess the two that come to mind most prominently have to do with dance. When H & I won 1st place for our hip hop duet as juniors in high school, that was a pretty rad time. And later that year when I won first place in the state Drill Down competition for our division, that was pretty rad also. I don't know if I had ever entered a drill down comp. before then. I had always wanted to, but was always scared or didn't want to waste the $2 or whatever. But anyway, just that feeling of knowing you were one of the sharpest and quickest to respond to those tricky commands was something special. I remember practicing at recess and lunch, all the way back in 8th grade at least! It was just fun to do.

And the hip hop duet was cool because we'd never done a duet before, and it was a lot bigger and more meaningful than winning first place on a team dance, because that happened often with our company, and in those cases you were only a small part of the whole. With this dance each of us contributed 50% to the whole (100% effort!), and it was one of my favorite dances to DO. Also the choreography and costumes fit us perfectly, and later when we performed during a pep rally for the school, everybody got to see how cool we really were. 

What would your life be like if you had a pet dinosaur?

Hell yeah! Having a pet dinosaur would rock my world. He'd be my best friend, my mode of transportation, and my bodyguard all at once. I'd ride him to school everyday and then let him roam the mountains and poop wherever he wanted while I was in class. I'd tell him all my deepest secrets and we'd eat snowcones together in the summer time. If I ended up in a dark alley at night and was about to be a salted (hehe), my pet dinosaur (some sort of raptor, for sure) would be right there to kick the trash out of my assailant and make him wish he'd never messed with me. 

Monday, January 24, 2011

Perfection Awaits

Things I've Been Perfecting As of Late

  • Banana orange smoothie: Some flawless combination of bananas, oranges, vanilla yogurt, and ice. 
  • Financial analysis ratio memorization.
    Current Ratio = Current Assets/Current Liabilities
  • Various challenging songs on Band Hero using the drums.
    Eg. Hands Down (Dashboard Confessional)
  • Cafe World customer satisfaction - are stable ratings in the future? Almost! 
  • Developing a good sleep schedule. Perfection here may actually be unattainable, but I am getting better.
  • Envisioning myself in my dream apartment, one that I have actually found. 
  • Sweepin' mines  
  • Art 1010 weekly assignment procrastination.
  • Being a lousy friend by taking forever to write and send letters. 
  • Dressin' up 80s style! Rocking the side pony, neon bracelets, and chunky square earrings (shown at right). 

By the way, when trying to find an alternate title for this post since I already like the title of the list and I didn't want to use the same word twice, I tried to find a synonym for the first word. Here are the results:

Conclusion: There is no substitute for perfection. 

"Nobody ever drowned in sweat."

"Brave hearts do not back down." 

"Never, never, never give up!"   HOO-AH!! 

Quotes by Marine Corp, Sophocles, and Winston Churchill, respectively. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Music Review: 10 Years

Thanks to my wonderful family members who payed attention to my organized wish list and constant nagging over the holidays, I am now the proud owner of 7 new CD's that came to me as Christmas presents. I've been listening to them a lot, as well as other single songs I've been downloading as usual, and I think I'm finally ready to review one of them!

Feeding the Wolves, 10 Years
Genre: Hard Rock, or Alternative Metal, according to Tuniverse

Oh Lord, I love this CD! 10 Years is a very new band to me. The only music I knew from this band from Tennessee included a single released in 2009 and the single currently being advertised on this album "Shoot It Out", from 2010. I must've had a really intuitive feeling that I would love the rest of it, because usually I listen to more than two songs before buying an album's band. Anywho, I'm glad I put this on my wish list because it's a great one!

It's always hard for me to describe music in words, so I try to look for other bands the music is similar to. It is my personal opinion that they are pretty different from any other band, but at times they have reminded me of: Three Days Grace, Framing Hanley (mostly on the first verse of "The Wicked Ones"), and Panic! at the Disco. Except I think I might like them better than all three of those bands. All of their songs have diverse melodies, upbeat head-banging/foot-tapping rhythms, and choruses that are easy and fun to sing along with once you learn the lyrics. The bridges deserve commendation for not just being slightly varied versions of the already played choruses or verses, like many bands do when trying to hide the fact that they've run out of music-making juice.

Of course I haven't listened to the lyrics much yet because I'm all about the sound, but at least I can say it's definitely not focused on sex and drugs. Actually, I haven't even come across a song that seems to touch on romance or relationships all that much, and that's rare these days, wouldn't you say? Don't quote me on this, but it appears that the songs are mostly the kind that analyze personal performance and inner struggle-type things, like in these lyrics from "Waking Up the Ghost":

     I, I'm waking up the ghost
     Not digging up the memories that were dead to me
     Now, now I'm getting close
     Closer to the enemy that's inside of me

I have an immense attraction to the perky songs like that one that leave my legs bopping up and down uncontrollably (not in a spastic way), but even the ballads on the album can hold their own. "One More Day" and "Don't Fight It" don't have to compete with the energized songs they're surrounded by, because the whole set flows like a well-made album should. Another thing I appreciate is the specific song titles that are easily connected to the songs themselves. When you see the words "Dead in the Water" or "Chasing the Rapture," you can easily recall the sound and lyrics they refer to. I get really annoyed when an album's song titles are all one or two vague words and you have to think harder to remember them. Three Days Grace has this problem, and in general I think their songs are less memorable - or at least the ones that aren't immediate radio hits. There we go! That's why 10 Years is better! As a whole, this album is more memorable. (An epiphany just occurred inside List Girl's head.)

What I don't like about the CD:
- It is not long enough! There are only 10 songs total, adding up to less than 45 minutes.
- The front insert doesn't contain lyrics to any of the songs. It is two pages. Lame.

In conclusion, 10 Years' album Feeding the Wolves is a quality rock/alternative album with pep and variety, but I wish there was more OF it. Here's one of my favorites, for you to taste the awesomeness. 

Monday, January 17, 2011

Monday Night Rantings: A Forced Post

It's been a week! Aah! Too long, too long.

Went to sushi tonight with some friends. I'm learning that I really like sushi rolls that have cream cheese in them, and I really like whatever they call Ton Katsu - fried pork with some type of sweet sauce drizzled over it. Fried pork is a strange concept in America, even though we have everything else fried - chicken, fries, rice, ice cream, etc. I particularly have to chuckle when I hear "chicken fried steak" just because that phrase makes it sound like two types of meat when it's only one.

Randomness. . . la la. . .

I'm also learning that I like driving, especially long distances on highways that aren't totally straight for 20 miles at a time (ahem*Oregon). I love listening to music in my car and it's the perfect opportunity, plus I just like the feeling of independence, going places far away on your own and actually knowing what you're doing. Today's round trip consisted of an almost solid hour of Breaking Benjamin, and Framing Hanley on most of the way back, with a few slower, scattered songs from my Get Acquainted With playlist towards the end, such as some stuff by Joshua Radin, Citizen Cope, and Iron & Wine. Reassessing my library over the last couple of weeks has brought me to realize I would greatly benefit from possession of more Iron & Wine music. They just are the perfect potion for calmness in my mind. Other music I'm hoping to get soon is the latest Linkin Park CD, and a few releases that should be coming out this spring (RED!! Rise Against! more than I can't think of at the moment!). And holy cow, according to this website there are so many more to look forward to that I had no idea about!

What else is new with me lately? Well I got slightly behind in my classes this weekend. Hopefully I can catch up soon and get back on the bandwagon, because I don't like feeling the least bit off schedule, no matter how minor the setback is. Last week I had some job application woes that aren't appropriate to discuss on the blog. Actually, most of the things that I have felt like venting about (or praising) fall under that category, so no wonder it's been so long since my last post.

Random thought: I feel the need to say that in every encounter I have with a new group of people, I'm forced to reassess my love of this place that I live in, and think about whether or not I can see myself staying here for the rest of my life. I don't know where else I'd want to go, but I often feel like I don't belong here, or sometimes in this world at all. That sounds really dramatic. But what I mean is that basically it's very rare to find a group of humans like myself who I actually relate to and want to spend time with, whose values reflect my own and who have fun the same ways I do. I hesitate to say that I think I've finally find that group, because I don't want to jinx it and lose any of the awesome relationships I've gained. And at the same time, I keep thinking this is just college and when I actually get past this stage of my life and start the next chapter, I'll have to go through the whole ordeal of not fitting in again. How am I ever going to find a husband? People in this state are so whack that you can almost observe males in their early 20s practicing their mating call because it's that time to find a wife. If they're not flaunting their feathers at the tame organized school dances, then they've already got a ring on their finger, and the rest of the country is the complete opposite, where everyone has sex with everyone else and you've got to read silly books on how to operate in the dating world.

Needless to say I'm scared of the future. What an off-topic topic, eh? This is more of what my real journal entries sound like, which I've been trying to keep in my actual journal. But hey, I really needed to post something. Goodnight, world.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Rated R for Random

I'm running out of ways to title a blog post that contains mostly a jumble of nonconnected things.

Recently I tried putting together a list of the sounds I love and hate. I didn't get very far, but here's a good start. I feel very passionately about each of these, or else I would've come up with a longer list of those that I just feel moderately about.

Sounds I Hate: #1. Skis scraping on hard snow. Especially at high speeds. This hasn't happened recently, but I've wiped out too many times in my life right after hearing this sound that I've been conditioned to be afraid of it. Plus it just sounds very unpleasant, like my version of nails on a chalkboard. #2. My dog Rusty licking himself. And not even in a disgusting place, just natural grooming of the paws and what-not. Isn't this something that cats normally do? The continuous, wet lapping of his tongue on his fur disgusts me so much I actually feel a tad nauseous when it happens. I have to leave the room or plug my ears to keep from going insane.

Sound I Love: Babies laughing. It's like the most evident proof that babies have pieces of Heaven literally infused in them. Too bad the world has to corrupt them while they grow up, and the purity disappears somewhere. But anyway, my soul delights in ticklish toddlers giggling with glee.

Updated 1/19/11: Sound I love #2 is F-16's jetting through the air. They are so powerful and fast, and I've always thought it sounded like the sky was being ripped apart, like a piece of fabric or something. Cool image, right?

Next item on the agenda: 

Tonight I was hanging out with Jake and I got to visit his 10 year-old pet boa. Her name escapes me at the moment. At first I was freaked out just by being close to it and running my finger along its skin, but I decided I would make myself hold the thing before I left, just to say I did. I think the terror on my face is an adequate description of how I was feeling at the time.


See the resemblance? 

We bonded. No, I'm serious. 
Check out that twirlage going on around my leg. 

I feel it is of importance to note that this snake was very heavy, and I don't think Britney's weighed as much as Jake's. If it did, then she either didn't hold it for very long (I don't know, I never saw her show), or she was about ten times more ripped than I. It definitely looks like that could've been the case. Either way, I feel better seeing the sweat glisten on her body, so I know I'm not the only one who had a hard time.

Other Note to Self:
Or Anybody Reading:

When all else fails during a babysitting sesh, put on The Grinch Who Stole Christmas (the two hour version) and fast-forward through the commercials. This works so well at holding kids' attention (there's just something about those jolly old red-nosed Who's!), and it's a step above the TV show Cops. Oh, and did you know the girl who played adorable little Cindy Lou Who is now the freakishly gothic rehab-bound Taylor Momsen, of Gossip Girl? It saddens me to see so how corrupted THIS baby turned out to be. 

Well, that's all folks. I still want to do a post on my own version of words that should be banned for being used too much/in the wrong context. Perhaps I will when I collect a more sufficient set of terms, that way it'll be legit. Ha. I hope that joke was understood. I can't wait to sleep in tomorrow. Cheers! 

Friday, January 7, 2011

Hitting the Slopes

I’ve known how to ski since I was about 5 years old. My family is a skiing family – it’s the probably the hobby my dad is willing to spend the most money on, aside from the boat. Despite my working at a ski resort, I didn’t strap into my boots and bindings once last year, because the past few years it hasn’t been all that fun for me anymore, especially next to my highly skilled and competitive brothers. Yesterday (Wednesday) I got on the slopes for the first time in two years, at the marvelous Snowbasin, partly because I missed it, and partly because I knew it would make my dad happy to join him in one of his favorite activities for a day.

Despite how serious I think it sounds – 2 years! – muscle memory does not fade at all. Neither does the familiar feeling of terror before I’m about to wipe out, as I had grown somewhat accustomed to, from my previous attempts at pushing the limits of my outdated skis in heavy powder and serious moguls. I’ve come to blame my most of my frustration with my performance on the skis themselves (not a completely invalid claim, says Dad), but despite their immaturity, I did pretty well out there yesterday. Somehow, all the other planets in the universe decided to align as well, and everything seemed to happen perfectly. Since we went up after my morning classes in the middle of the week, we almost had the whole mountain to ourselves. The weather was great – not too cold, and not a cloud in sight. The new Christmas mittens that weren’t exactly built for serious winter activity totally held their own and I didn’t have to fight the freezing of fingers that occasionally happens.

Of course I noticed these details because it made the experience a lot easier to endure. Endure? Hell, I had fun. I hope to ski again soon, with similar conditions, and maybe I’ll even try a different pair of skis and see if I can manage better. To make the day even more superior, I got to ski a run with my old buddy Clay, and for the first time in my life I experienced the Mt. Allen Tram, which takes you to a whopping elevation of 9,465 feet, giving you the most incredible and terrifying views. I always appreciated the sights from the top of the other highest lifts that I’m used to, but this was incomparable. Not only are you able to see for miles out to the North and East, but over the ridge at the Ogden Valley and beyond as well.

The ride itself is an intimidating thing, because of just how high it goes, and the fact that the only trails down from it are blacks and double diamonds – stuff for the serious experts. I’m surprised that in all my years of frequenting the resort, it took me this long to finally go up the tram. It’s something I just never thought about before, but I encourage anyone in the area to give it a shot and take some awesome pictures, like these. Nothing will ever be as good as the real thing though, so get up there! 

 I am on top of the world. 

*Click on me for larger image size*

Monday, January 3, 2011


In a perfect world ...
I would be able to throw my drumsticks at the TV when I got mad at Guitar Hero for not picking up on my PERFECT RHYTHM.

In a perfect world ...
My face wouldn't turn into a block of frozen flesh every time I walk the dogs at night in single digit temperatures.

In a perfect world ...
Single digit temperatures wouldn't exist anywhere I took up residence.

In a perfect world ...
We could eat as many Christmas cookies and as many bowls of frozen yogurt/custard/whatever with unlimited toppings as we wanted without gaining weight whatsoever.

In a perfect world ...
The overdraft fee on my checking account wouldn't be a whopping $25, and in general, purchases made with my debit card would show up online when they happened, not a week later, causing me to overestimate the amount of money actually in my account, thus leading to said overdrafts.

In a perfect world ...
The insanely attractive guy in my last accounting class would've coincidentally ended up in my same second level class as well.

In a perfect world ...
Nail polish would be completely dry in 5 minutes, not 5 hours, during which time it is so disgustingly easy to smudge or chip the originally perfect coat.

In a perfect world ...
Music on iTunes would all be set at the same appropriate sound levels, so you wouldn't have to attempt to fix it and end up with fuzzy crap sounds blaring through your already faulty car speakers.

In a perfect world ...
Online access codes for used textbooks would be free. Not $80 on top of what you already payed.

In a perfect world ...
Everyone would read my blog.

In a perfect world ...
No one would read my blog and I could post whatever the heck I wanted on it.