Thursday, February 28, 2013

Tell me sexism isn't real.

Nerd: *sexist joke*
my friends: hahahahaha

Me: Girls are smarter than guys!
friends: that's sexist.
friends: some girls are smarter than some guys, and vice versa.
friends: *slightly patronizing* oh swegan you're such a feminist.
Me: You guys do realize I was joking, right?
Me: I do think girls are more emotionally mature though.
friends: *go back to doing chem*
me:
friends:
me:
friends
me: *goes back to doing chem*


WHAT.


THE.


FUCK.


GUYS.


I am so mad about this I can't even tell you. Also this happened today.

Nerd (to me): *sexist joke* women are incapable of thinking logically
me: *glares*
Nerd:
me: You think you would have learned not to tell me sexist jokes by now.

BOOM, YOU FUCKING ASSHAT.
And it better not happen again.
If you want to hang out with people who think those jokes are funny then go ahead.
I'll be somewhere else.

yer pal,
swegan >:(

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

GOD DAMMIT

I AM IN GRADE 12, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD. I AM PRACTICALLY AN ADULT. I SHOULD NOT HAVE TO BE SHOUTING IT IN CAPSLOCK BUT TODAY I GOT A LITTLE SHEET FROM THE OFFICE THAT SAID I'M EXCUSED FOR THIS DISTRICT STUDENT ADVISORY COUNCIL THING I SIGNED UP FOR AND IT LISTS ME AND THE OTHER THREE KIDS WHO ARE GOING AND THEY LISTED MY GRADE AS GRADE 9.

FOR FUCK'S SAKE. It's one thing for a teacher to casually comment on this in the hallway. It's another thing for the office to fuck it up. My guess is they saw my name next to Freckles' name on the list of students when they were looking up all the grade levels of the kids involved to print the sheets, and since she's in grade 9, they mixed up the grades. Either that or the office lady things I'm actually in grade 9.

I'm wearing my fucking grad hoodie to school on Tuesday. This shit is ridiculous. Also the next meeting is at my middle school and that place is bound to be ripe with painful memories, so I feel like wearing a piece of how far I've come will help me. I don't really want to see many of my old teachers again, or see all the kids in the hallways and wonder if there's a girl who's just like me, short and tiny and a loser, called a faggot and a fucking bitch and ugly (via a comparison to smeagol from LOTR) by a guy and still liking him anyway. It's hard to think about how much of a colossal idiot I was.

My middle school just represents all of that. I'm guessing we'll meet in the library though which is a fairly safe place although I'm going to have to look for that one weird book I read at one point if I can because holy fuck I want to read that book again and see if it makes more sense.

Anyway. I'm sure some staff member at my middle school will assume I'm IN middle school at some point in time. I should probably carry my ID card with me. You never know. I could get in trouble for going to the bathroom and then being in the hallways. I'm now imagining some scene where some teacher I once had sees me and is angry like "Get to class!" And I can be like "I don't go here, I'm here with the district student advisory council" and they're like "sure, sure." and I'll be like "no really look, I go to [this school], look at my ID." Of course that won't happen, though. It's just fun to imagine what it would be like if my life was actually hard in any way.

At least there's no chance of running into dumb, dumber, and dumbest, or any of the other blunder boys, for that matter. They're probably off skipping classes at the other high school, the one to which I did not go.

Dodged those bullets, that's for sure.

Anyway. This is a pretty angsty, stupid post, but whatever. It was pissing me off that even the office thinks I'm a ninth grader when I'm in full IB and graduating this year and going off to university next year where clearly no one will want to date me because I'm going to look like a fucking high schooler for the next four years at least.

yer incredibly young-looking pal,
swegan

P.S. I suppose I will be thankful for this youthful look I have later in life or something. My mother is the same way. She still doesn't look her age. I don't know if she ever has.

Friday, February 22, 2013

What if?

Sometimes I have ideas.

Most of the time they're pretty weird/terrible, like "They should just put all the books in the world on a giant online library" or "We should just replace all the characters in action movies with children for a laugh." Yeah. Those are things I've actually thought. It's pretty sad.

Then, sometimes I have these ideas and I just want to see them happen so badly it's crazy. Today, I was watching youtube, when I suddenly thought "What if somebody did an adaptation of Pride and Prejudice but where all the genders were swapped?" And then I thought "OMG THAT HAS TO HAPPEN."

Seriously. It would be awesome. Like there's the five sons, and the oldest (you could call him John, omg omgomgomg) would be super nice and attractive, and then there's the second son who is super opinionated and relatable and then there's all the rest of them, and then their father is all obsessed with them marrying the hottest/richest girls ever and their mother is like "oh that's silly" and she's super awesome and everyone loves her and just OH MY GOD can this please happen? Please, internet? Someone will see this, right? Someone agrees with me?

Actually this whole gender-swap idea would be neat with a bunch of movies/books. I just think this one in particular would be interesting because I'm a big fan of the story and the LBD. I just can't stop thinking about it. Don't ask me to come up with it, though, because there's no way I have that kind of time or have plans to make time in the future.

Gah. I need to answer questions about Bismarck now. Stupid HL history.

yer pal,
swegan :)

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Also WOW

My blog has almost 10,000 views. And one entry- the one I posted about Australia- has almost 1000. Holy carp, guys, thank you.

Somehow there were also just five pageviews. So, hi! I'm not sure how many of you stayed here and actually listened to me talk about my life, but thanks if you did. You're cool.

Also I have a new follower, and I have this thing where I try to greet them all because I don't get a new follower very often and can thus afford to do so. Hello, new follower! You know who you are :)

Although I'm not sure if Vince still reads these. It kind of creeps me out knowing that she could very well be reading them and just not bringing it up at school. More likely thought, if she doesn't make time for wonderful things like the LBD, she doesn't make time for ma blog. Which is cool. I just kind of wonder if she's still here because if she is I know nothing about it.

yer pal,
swegan :)

I hate this stupid internet binge

I can't stop. Just argh. It's like eating nachos- at first, all is well, and I'm thinking damn, this was a good idea. But then it stops being like eating nachos, because at least with nachos I can stop eating them because cheese. It's like if I ate a whole bunch of nachos and just didn't stop- afterwards I just feel terrible and antisocial about myself. Also I have a shit-ton of homework that needs doing and to be frank, not a lot of it is getting done.

Sigh. I guess I can start that chem thing tomorrow; I've had it for a month and it's due Monday. The spanish paper is going to be difficult, but not so difficult- I found a few spanish pages on "desayuna tipica de espana" and I figure for the "desayna tipica de canada" I can just go by memory since, y'know, I live here and have for a long time. I just need to read some of the sites. I think I'll be able to write at least 200 words on it. And I found out that most movies we own come with both French and Spanish as a language option, so I've got a plan made to watch nothing but Spanish movies for... a while. We have our Spanish oral coming up and I just want to have Spanish on the brain. Today at dinner I was so tempted to answer my family in Spanish and I kept thinking of how to say this or that- it was awesome. I did watch a movie in Spanish today as well. It was just sitting there and I was home alone. Oh, and I got my short chem lab done, and I've printed my EE so mom can look at it, and my TOK essay isn't due for weeks so probably not a lot of that is happening this week.
Oh right, my bio lab... that shouldn't take very long at all. Planning labs is not that hard and I'm getting better at it since we've had to plan like a zillion already. IB is quite fond of throwing a topic at you and saying "Come up with an experiment to test this." It doesn't faze me anymore. Also I'm almost done my Spanish grammar, after skipping a bunch of it. I don't need to do it all, some of it is the same stuff or is just practicing words I can just write down. Also I don't know a bunch of nouns and some verbs so it's really frustrating. I don't think mi profesora de espanol will be too mad.
The chem thing is the yucky thing, really. Plus we got another stupid-ass essay question for social (although I think the last essay went pretty well, since I changed my argument at the last minute) (that's actually not sarcasm, I thought it went well), and then I haven't done any of the readings or questions so I should probably get one of those three things done tomorrow. The essay question I won't worry about until next week. I've got enough on my plate as it is, and I don't care if you think it's barely anything, I think it is.

Fex said the other day that she doesn't know how we do it, the full IB kids. She's art IB which is a pretty heavy workload on its own, comparable to full IB even, and she said that she does one art piece a day and then she's done. I assured her, as I frequently tell myself, that it's really not that much, and that anyway we're used to it at this point. Getting work done and being stressed so much that sometimes I feel sick about it is just part of who I am now, something that runs in the background.

It's funny, but talking about IB actually helps me get over the internet binge. And of course we all know what I'm internet binge-ing (I can't type "binging" for reasons) on, and I want to stop really badly even though I love the series to death. I can't help but worry what the cast would think for some reason, and that they would think I'm a weird loner with no life. Then I'm like "fuck that, they live and breathe this show now" and then I'm like "Why do I fucking care what other people think of me anyway? If I'm confident enough to say that I actually liked twilight (not all of it), then why can't I be like 'yeah, I may be slightly obsessed with a web series but not all the time and mostly when school isn't as much of an issue'?" And then I just think "Meh whatever I'm going to write."

Speaking of writing... it's going well, although it still puts me in a weird mood I don't like. Thankfully, things are looking up a bit, with some awkward tension soon to be in the air. Not that I like it when my characters hate their lives, but this is something that needs to happen and I'm looking forward to them getting it over with.

Also I have a nice Toblerone here since they were 3$ at Walmart on Friday and so even though the single people (among other people that live in this area where I live but I won't stereotype them anymore) got all the leftover candy first (seriously there were empty shelves and they were setting up Easter candy) I still got some Toblerone, so yay.

And I would just like to mention that I may have a slight science-nerd-crush on Richard Feynman. I'm reading his autobiography and holy carp, this guy was seriously awesome and had a really cool life. Plus he's a smart-ass, but also really smart, and it's just fun to read his life story written in his voice. Also, he makes me want to be a scientist. I'm thinking astrophysics, still, even though I'd probably never get anywhere because the math would take me ages and they want people who can do math super fast. My brain has never worked that way and it never will. I need time to absorb math.
For the record, I also recently read Stephen King's On Writing, and I have to say, though I may never read any of his books because I'm not into horror, the guy seems like a super-fantastic writer. Like super-duper fantastic. Like one of the best writers ever. If you are a writer, I'd highly recommend that book, because it's good and not super-pretentious-or-rule-filled (although some of his rules I say to hell with because they don't work with my life), plus the guy has published a lot, so we know that he must know a thing or two about writing.

This post just made me feel better about life.
I should seriously vlog. These are getting long and boring. They're just journal entries. I fail to see the point and yet I keep going anyway.
After all, not everything in life is worth it. :)

yer pal,
swegan :)

Monday, February 18, 2013

Empathy

I have watched only two war movies that I can think of.

War Horse, in which I couldn't even keep watching through the first battle. My justification was that I knew too much about that war and how deadly it was and seeing all the soldiers (even if they were all just actors) thinking it was another war that could be won with a strong cavalry just broke me. They just didn't know. I don't know if my family finished it without me, but that was why I couldn't finish that movie.

And tonight, Freckles and I watched The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. It was her idea, not mine, and I called it at the beginning that I was going to cry, especially at the end. It's not so much that I felt bad for Bruno, but that all that stuff actually happened. So many thousands of people died the exact same way and seeing it acted out was just too much. It's like I could have handled it if it were just a movie, y'know? But it wasn't just a movie. Those things actually happened, those things were actually said and thought and done to and about people. It's just sick that human beings actually did that to one another and it makes me sick to my stomach just thinking about how cruel human beings can be.


The other day in TOK we watched some psychological experiments. The first one was... I can't remember the name, but it was testing conformity. A very famous experiment, and if I ever remember the name I'll put it here.
Then there was one where students were given random roles of "prisoner" and "guard" in a fake jail in a university basement, but they found that the experiment was too psychologically damaging after just six days. That one was a little worrisome, but nothing too bad.
The next one was testing obedience to authority. Two "subjects" were called in and told they were going to do an experiment on memory (only one was an actual subject). They were supposedly randomly told whether or not they were going to be "teacher" or "student"- it was rigged so that the subjects always got teacher. The teacher had to read a bunch of questions off and if the "student" got a wrong answer, they had to give them electric shocks that increased in voltage with every wrong answer. Of course the "students" weren't actually being shocked, but the subjects were made to think they were with tape recordings. A man in a lab coat told them to keep going with the experiment, and most people went all the way to the maximum voltage, more than enough to kill a person. I found this experiment really upsetting and disturbing. I mean, interesting, yes, but quite upsetting. And here were my classmates all around me, sitting around and making light jokes about menial things that happened in the video- "oh, that girl looks like she's enjoying giving the shocks" "he held onto the button for such a long time!"
The worst one, though, was the last one. It was done in an apartment complex somewhere, over two nights. On one night, they had a man in an apartment play drums loudly. Of course several neighbours complained and asked him to stop. The next night, he played a recording that sounded like a husband beating his wife. And sadly, nobody came to stop that noise, though it was just as loud as the drums. And here my classmates were again, making stupid comments and laughing at the fact that a cat wandered by one of the cameras set up on the street. I felt like crying. It was incredibly upsetting and disturbing to me that nobody even called the cops or anything.

Of course, I didn't say anything after and tried my best to act like I was fine, but I definitely wasn't laughing or smiling. I don't understand how they could all have been laughing and cracking jokes when here on the screen was evidence that people actually didn't do anything about domestic abuse. Maybe it's because that actually worries me, that subject, that someday that could happen to me and it really frightens me to think nobody would do anything about it. I mean, obviously the kind of guys I'll end up dating probably won't be like that; I'm not saying I'm an excellent judge of character but I don't like hanging around nasty people, or shifty people. I like nice, intelligent, normal people, who make friends and have adventures and dreams and respect for their fellow human beings, who have empathy and compassion to a reasonable degree. Like my friends in IB, and even just at school right now. They all fulfill all of those qualities, even the friends who sometimes piss me off.
Anyway, it just bothered me that nobody else found it upsetting. Just like it bothered me tonight that I was practically bawling at the end of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas and Freckles' eyes were completely dry. I mean, I'm not saying she's heartless, god no, just that... I guess maybe she didn't want to cry with me around, even though I was already crying. Maybe she thought it was stupid to cry about movies. I used to, and now I don't care. If I'm upset by a movie, I'm probably going to cry. Deal with it. She was wide-eyed and clearly horrified, though- it's very different reading that ending in a book and watching it.

Empathy is important to me, lately, given Tuesday and Wednesday and basically every day that wasn't Monday this past week. I'm trying to recognize that being empathetic is not a bad thing, not a stupid thing, not a weakness, and not something to hide. Humans are empathetic by nature after all, right? We're social, we need to be in a social group to function normally, and we can't really be in a social group without feeling empathy. So why do I view it as some stupid thing that I should hide and only show in private? It's a human emotion.
It's not just a female emotion, either. It's a human emotion. And I'm done being embarrassed about it. Maybe that means that I'm not a big fan of war movies or psychological experiments. So be it.

yer pal,
swegan

Sunday, February 17, 2013

The endless wisdom of my English teacher

I think it should be obvious by now that I really like English class. No, I love English class (although technically this semester it's World Literature 35i, but whatever).

The IB kids of course were ranting the other day about IB and how much it sucks now but it should be worth it later, and our teacher (he seriously needs a nickname) (maybe litero? That sounds lame though. Dammit that rhymed again) was saying how doing the IB might not be worth it. Of course I retorted with "It better be worth it, all this work we've put in." He responded with "Not everything in life is worth it, [my name]." He did go on to say most IB kids said it was worth it, but like his story the other day, that quote was stuck in my head.
Not everything in life is worth it.
Not everything in life is worth it.

Not everything in life is worth it.

And GAH, I finally get it now. I'm sure he didn't mean to let this stick with me, and maybe I'm making more out of it than there is, but I think what this means is that I can't do stuff because it's supposedly worth it later. Or at least, not everything. Not everything in life is worth it, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't do it anyways.

Is it worth it to write a bunch of novels I'm never going to publish because I'm a giant chicken and actually maybe I will publish someday just not now because IB? One could say yes, because they make me happy, but beyond that I honestly get very little material gain out of writing novels. I get to explore some emotions and scenarios that I probably otherwise wouldn't, and I get to meet and get to know a bunch of really cool characters, but beyond emotional growth, I really don't think there is much to gain out of that. But I do it anyway. Because I love writing. And that's enough for me.

Is it worth it to do all this IB work now (even though there's a chance I may possibly not get all 4s on my HLs and end up with only a certificate)? I don't know. But if I'm doing this primarily because I'm hoping to gain something, I think I'm doing it wrong.

I've said it before and I'll say it again that I'm doing the IB because I like learning stuff, and the extra work that comes with it is just a giant pain in the ass that comes with all the cool stuff I learn. Also, I know that if I were to be in a regular stream class, I'd get bored. Not to make myself sound like some snooty upper class I'm-smarter-than-you-snob, but I would. The challenge of IB is something I know I need. It keeps slapping me in the face and sobering me up when I'm drunk on life and happiness. It's not for the faint of heart or for those who aren't willing to work themselves into back problems from leaning over their desks and computers so much. It's one crazy awful adventure, but you get to learn some really cool stuff and meet some really cool people along the way.

I'm doing it because I let myself off the hook too often and need something prodding me along until I learn how to slap myself in the face when I'm being lazy or overly optimistic. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with optimism, just that I have this limited little view of the sunny parts of life and I need to be aware that not all of life is sunny. This past week did a good job of proving that to me.

This past week was a giant roller coaster ride of emotional instability. I was exhausted by the time it was done and not really up for much. But it's amazing what a good night's sleep and a day of relaxation can do. I'm feeling much better, even though it's not even me dealing with all the shit so I'm not sure why I couldn't handle it. I think it's just that I misread the situation and extrapolated it to the worst extremes.

I can still remember Tuesday night, when she stopped replying, and I was walking around the laundry basket in my room because it wasn't in it's usual corner, and I was saying "pick up the phone [friend's name], pick up the phone [friend's name] and even I could hear the desperation in my voice and I thought my heart was going to explode out of my chest or that it was going to literally break from beating so hard and I was so terrified that

Let's just say it was rough, and it was that that broke me enough that I had to tell someone, and now good people know, people who can help her through her shit better than I ever could. And I know she's mad, but I know she knows that I did it because even if we're not that good of friends, I do care about her, and I wasn't going to let her die.

I think this post is long enough.
Not everything is worth it, kids.

yer pal,
swegan

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Feels

I will never stop.
Someone needs to tell you how wonderful you are and if you can't do that then I will.
I will be the one shouting everything I love about you into your ear.
I will not lose you.
I will not be responsible for that.

I love you too much to let you die.

Do you hear me?

I will not let you die.
I will not let the world lose you.
Today is not your last day.
Today is the first day of the rest of your life.
And your life is going to be beautiful and long because you are amazing.
And you need to know that.
Every goddamn day.
You are amazing.

I will never tell if you don't want me too, unless it's getting too close for me to handle.
Your secret is safe with me, but your secret is not safe for you.
You may be hours and hours away, but I am there for you.

Never forget that.
I love you.
Someone does.
And I can't let you die.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Sisterhood

The recent episodes of LBD keep getting me thinking about it and today I came to the conclusion that really I am nobody's little sister.

Yes I have an older brother, but the relationship I have with my sister is nothing like the relationship I have with him. I protect my little sister like she's my child, I care for her, I watch out for her, I worry about her, I cry when she cries and nothing makes me angrier than when someone does something to hurt her.

My brother loves me, I know that, but I barely see him since he's so much older. He doesn't look out for me or protect me because we live such different lives. My being upset I can tell doesn't upset or worry or angry him in the same way my sister's being upset does.

And sometimes I wonder what it's like to be a little sister. Because really, I don't have an older sister, nor an older sibling that I was particularly close to and aspired to be or whatever. Not that I aspire not to be my brother, I love my brother and I think he's wonderful and fantastic and the point of this post is not to bash him in any way because I love him to death, but to talk about the relationship I have with my siblings.

It's funny because I'm always like the middle child and the oldest child at the same time, probably more the oldest than anything else. Because my daily life involves that: me being the big sister. I take care of my sister every day and today when she got upset, I got upset, and I got angry. She's my baby sister, for crying out loud. I take care of her. It's just what I do. It's what all older siblings do.

And I don't really get that.

In my day-to-day life, I don't play the role of a little sister. I play the role of big sister, who makes sure her little sister gets to school on time and remembers her coat and has someone to talk to at the end of the day and at lunch, if need be. I am the one who reminds her of my existence and our connection in the hallways by shouting out her first name and embarrassing her :). It's my job. I don't know anything else.

So I guess it's just lately the LBD has been nothing but episodes of Jane taking care of Lizzie and/or Lizzie taking care of Lydia, and I guess that's why I relate to both Jane and Lizzie: they're both older sisters, like me. And they both take care of their respective younger sisters.

Nobody takes care of the big sisters, though. Nobody's really looking out for me, protecting me, making sure I have someone to talk to at the end of the day. I don't have a big brother or sister that does that. I am the one who has to take care of me, and I must look out for myself, make mistakes, and make sure my younger sister doesn't follow in the footsteps of my mistakes. I am the one who is there for her always. I am the one who is her protector and her confidante. I'd like to think she's there for me as well, but I know it's not quite the same. She doesn't take care of me or worry about me or make sure I don't make stupid mistakes, and it's because that's what she knows.

I'm not meaning to say that this is some one-way relationship either, though. My sister has been nothing but generous to me and she always makes me laugh and smile when I'm having a bad day and laughs at my jokes, too. Besides that, she's honest, and it's always important to have someone who's honest in your life. I'm just realizing now we mean different things to each other.

But at the end of the day, being a big sister is in my blood and I wouldn't trade it for the world. I love my baby sister and my big brother to bits and pieces and I know there is much to be learned out of my relationships with them.

yer pal,
swegan :)

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Group four was literally one of the best things ever.

I mean, once we got past the stupid-ass topic of travel (We had to do something science-related to whatever topic they gave us- a lab, a research project, whatever), preferably with an international aspect, it was all good. Once we had something on which to work, it was all good. And it was easy and we got to take breaks and eat pizza and oh my god it was just a giant nerd fest.

Basically, it was all the grade 11 and grade 12 science IBs. Everyone there was so nerdy, and so committed to doing well and making things look amazing and putting in their best effort. It's not like when you're in a regular class and you run the risk of getting put in a group with kids who just don't care about the outcome. Everyone cared and it was really wonderful.

This is why I do IB. Everyone cares (even when we have senioritis and don't care, there's still this part of us that does care and wants to do well and no matter how hard we try to hide it, it's there, operating on autopilot in the background 24/7) and is committed and smart and nice and just really awesome. I'm not saying that IB kids are better than regular kids, though- I'm well aware that there are plenty of kids in regular stream who are all those things. It's just that if one is not all those things, one would not fare well in the IB.

At least I had Haurie in my group. Whew. I was afraid of getting stuck with three people I didn't know- I'm shy around people I've never met. Which doesn't really make any sense, considering that once people get to know me they basically get to know everything about me. I talk all the time, I'm not a very private person, and I wear my heart on my sleeve. Yes I have my secrets, so does everyone, but not as many as some people.

The two grade 11s in our group were wonderful and our project was super awesome (we did Jet Lag, its effects on the brain, and how to prevent/cure it). Of course we were only marked on personal skills, not the outcome, but still. Everyone else's projects were really cool, too- and they were all different. I mean, there were only seven groups, but still.

I just liked hanging out with a bunch of nerds. One of the grade 11s in our group was full as well, although Grade 11 full IB isn't quite the same thing especially in the second semester. Grade 12 is a whole 'nother load of poop. I told him to get as much of his EE and IA done over the summer as he could, because if he did he'd love himself. I'm going to tell my sister that too, because if there's one thing I would have done differently, it would be getting all my research done over the summer. All of it. It makes your life so much easier and there's still plenty of time to waste on the internet/outside in the sun/eating ice cream/hanging out with friends.

It was also really nice to see the crop of full IB kids that are coming up to bad next year. Most likely one or two of them will drop something before next year, and some kids might end up dropping science IB (which renders group 4 moot).

Also I got more compliments on my odd milk containers- that sounds funny. No, like I bring milk to school for lunch every day, 'cause I've been doing it my entire life and it's good for you. But the drink containers (THERE that sounds less weird) are bright pink and green and are from Contigo (I love their stuff, seriously. I think they sell it at costco- coffee mugs and water bottles and now, little drink containers for kids) and everyone seems to think they're really interesting for some reason.

Anyway. I should probably get back to my history homework so I can eat and then watch a fangirly movie with mom. I'd say Pride and Prejudice but I actually don't really want to watch that. I have to be in a certain mindset to watch that movie. It's just not this mindset.

Actually right now Fex just posted a picture of one of her latest art IB things on facebook, and oh my god it is so unbelievably gorgeous. I don't even know what it is or what it's supposed to be, but it's beautiful, and relaxing, and just so wonderful... I can't believe I know this girl who is so clearly going to be an amazing artist someday. And I'm not just saying that. I don't just say things.

yer pal,
swegan :)

Monday, February 4, 2013

Don't judge a book by the internet

Please. For the love of god.

I've ranted about this before and I keep coming back to it because everyone who hates on twilight seems to say the same things. The books are shit. The relationship is abusive. It's ridiculous and unrealistic. She's not even special, why does he love her? The writing is terrible. All people who like twilight are stupid.  They don't appreciate fine literature. Vampires aren't like that! It's not even a good love story!

I'd like to address each of these one by one, even though nobody reads this blog anyway.

The books are shit.
I don't want to hear anybody saying that unless they've read the books. You don't hear me passing judgement on Harry Potter or something like Sense and Sensibility, or even Dracula. No. Because I haven't read them. Read the book. Then you can judge.
Also... this isn't a measurable thing. It's really subjective. It's not a fact, it's your opinion (that I would hope you'd hold only after you'd read the books). Get over yourself.

The relationship is abusive.
I actually don't understand this one- and I'm not trying to make a point there, why are people saying that? I'd like to know. Does anyone know? I just never saw it. I mean, I understand that it's not a great relationship, or the kind I'd want, but I never thought of it as abusive, so I can't really refute this one, except to say that whenever I see this on the internet it doesn't seem to have much backup and that confuses me.

It's ridiculous and unrealistic.
You're telling me Harry Potter is realistic? Or any of the other books that people run around claiming are better?
It's a work of fiction, for christ's sake. It's allowed to be ridiculous and unrealistic. Books are like that. Get used to it. They've been like that for ages now. It's one of the best things about them, too- I mean, I think fiction is the best way to live vicariously through someone else.

She's not even special, why does he love her?
I have to agree, although I think girls clung to this because so many girls today don't view themselves as special, and to have an example of a story out there where the heroine isn't very special and still is loved is comforting or inspiring or something. I'm confident in myself, and I still like that aspect. Bella isn't particularly pretty or smart or funny or athletic or charming or graceful, and yet someone still loves her. So you know what? Someone can totally fucking love me, too, even with all my fuckups.

The writing is terrible.
Again, very subjective. I'm not saying her writing was great (from my perspective), but it wasn't terrible. Don't hate on the author. It's a scary business, putting your ideas and thoughts that you've spent years putting into organized words out there for all to read and see, and I think it's really harsh to come down so hard on somebody. As someone who hopes to be an author myself someday, I have to say, if this is the way books can be judged, I might not even publish ever, and then things like Camp Lame-o 1-4 (if I ever finish the 4th one), a something, and Future Fantasy might never be read by anybody and that makes me sad.

All people who like twilight are stupid.
If you're referring to their intelligence, I am living proof that this is false. I know myself to be an intelligent person. I don't think there's anything wrong with saying that- I'm a smart girl. I'm not saying I'm smarter than x and y and z, or the smartest, just that I'm smart. I know I am. Not at everything, but I'm still smart. And I like twilight.
If you're referring to stupid in an insult type of way like "Whatever. You're stupid." (actually now that I think about it I'm not sure how that's different, but it makes sense in my head), then you need to grow the fuck up and stop judging people based solely on the fact that they read a book that mainstream culture hates. People hate on 50 shades all the time, and I have a friend who's read them all. Do I judge her for that? No. I judge her for other reasons, most of them having to do with what a colossal bitch she can be sometimes, but I don't judge her for having read certain books I myself might not like. Shocking, I know.

They don't appreciate fine literature.
I'm fucking breaking this stereotype again. I think I appreciate some fine literature- for example, I read Pride and Prejudice and of course loved it (though I found it hard to read), and I'm starting to read Emma and North and South, both of which so far are really excellent. Oh, and Frankenstein, though that book scares me a little so I haven't gotten around to finishing it.
Also, fine literature is once again subjective. I'm assuming here that classics are fine literature. Since I appreciate both classics and twilight, I break the stereotype again. You're welcome.

Vampires aren't like that!
So ALL VAMPIRES MUST BE THE SAME, and NO ONE is allowed to have a thing called "creativity." If you don't like her vampires, then that's fine. I'm not sure whether I do or not, but I do know that nobody has a monopoly or a copyright on vampires, so I can take them and put my own spin on them if I want to and nobody can stop me. I've already put my own spin on magic, elves, and unicorns in one of my stories, and nobody seems to care.
Authors are allowed to put their own spin on ideas. It keeps things interesting.

It's not even a good love story!
Again, subjectivity. I thought it was pretty good. What now? I'm not saying it's my favourite love story, or my least favourite, but I thought it was a pretty good love story. Interesting and different- not one I'd write myself, for sure. And this ties back into the whole abuse thing, which, as I mentioned, I don't understand. Seriously, could someone please explain that to me? It's driving me nuts.

There you have it folks. It's four books, and you can't judge 'em until you've read 'em.
I know this will come off as prissy and know-it-all-esque to many people, but please, disagree with me. I'm always open for discussion, especially since it seems nobody ever wants to discuss much of anything here. I'm not saying I'm right, I'm just trying to make a point that I don't think gets made a lot on the internet. Also I don't want  this to happen to Camp Lame-o or to any other book, for that matter, so I'm trying to prevent it. I know people are going to hate on Camp Lame-o and tell me it's terrible and that I'm a terrible writer. But I hope that by then I at least have to make them look for evidence to support their position for anyone else to take them seriously.

Stephenie Meyer is not my favourite author (that spot currently belongs to Beth Revis because HOLYSHITHOLYSHITOHMYGODTHATGIRLCANWRITE!), but she's still pretty good. And if you're going to hate, can you at least do so intelligently? I've been forced to come up with an intelligent argument for appreciating the twilight saga, why shouldn't haters have to do the same?
Also, I spoke about Harry Potter in here a few times because that seems to be the mainstream antithesis to twilight- it's good, it's an example of adventure, the heroines aren't weak and pathetic! Yay, hooray, I'm sure the books are great and I actually happen to really like the idea behind them, but I just... couldn't get into them. I tried, I promise. BUT I will not say anything about J.K. Rowling's skill as an author. You know why? BECAUSE I HAVEN'T FUCKING READ HER BOOKS FOR CHRIST'S SAKE.

Pipe the fuck down and keep reading.

yer pal,
swegan :)

Saturday, February 2, 2013

My English teacher told the most amazing story ever in World Lit today and I can't get it out of my head.

We're starting to read Death of a Salesman today. My English teacher read that when he was in high school as well, and he said "This play changed my life." I'd tell you the whole story, but it's really his story to tell. To summarize it, that play brought him to where he is today- teaching drama and English and IB to high school students. He got so choked up about it. It was one of the most moving moments I've ever seen.
I've heard my English teacher numerous times mention how much he loves his job and how grateful he is that he gets to do it and that he loves coming to work every day. As if that wasn't enough amazingness.

I don't know, I just can't get it out of my head now. It's stuck in there even more solidly than the LBD, which, let's be honest, is quite the feat. We read a bit of the play and it's not changing my life, I have to say, though I can relate to it. That fear in the back of my head that I'll end up like Willy. We've only read two pages and already I know that I'm probably going to talk a lot of BS about how boring the play is, but I'll get something out of it, ultimately. I think that happens to everything in English (except Godot. That is the one exception to everything).

And I think really what his speech did today was make me realize why I'm in IB in the first place. Yes, the workload sucks, and yes, I cry about it a lot because I don't know how I'm going to get everything done. But I know why I'm here and it's just that I can't stay away. The allure of all this knowledge is too much for me to resist. I have to know more. I love all these subjects too much, I have to learn more about the human body, about animal behaviour, about organic chemistry, about all the elements in the periodic table, about how they work, about all this great literature I'd never read on my own, about all these amazing historical events that change my entire view of the world every time, about all these diverse perspectives in a world I get no experience of because this city is so small.

I love learning. I do, I really do, and that's why I'm in IB. Because IB is the ultimate chance to get to learn extra stuff in high school and I love that. I am getting such an incredible education and I love it, I'm addicted to it, I can't stop learning, I just can't. I have to know more, always. I am plagued by this eternal, restless curiosity and IB is the perfect answer to that in my high school years.

Speaking of good teachers... my biology teacher is also amazing. I distinctly remember him saying sometime earlier in the year, that "It doesn't matter how you believe all this stuff got here- evolution, god, whatever- it doesn't matter, because it's so amazing." Something along those lines. That is exactly how I feel- all of everything is just so fascinating. Which chemicals make up the smells and tastes and textures of everyday things, the incredible workings of the human ear- I mean, I can hear one finger stroking the back of my hand. How incredible is that? And all this literature- all these ideas, all these stories, all these other little worlds to slip into! Not to mention the history. Real things that happened to real people. Human history is rife with adventure, let me tell you.

This is why I can't drop anything. I love learning about it all too much. I love it, I can't help myself.

Also, I've just discovered today that I'm the luckiest person ever. Perfect home life, barely touched by bullying, incredible self-esteem and talent, intelligence, and not to mention wonderful friends and getting to live in a fantastic country. I am the luckiest girl in the whole world. I can write, I just learned this yesterday. I looked at Future Fantasy again and it is really good, much better than I thought it was. The character development, the plot, the pacing... it's all so real and good and I'm so damn impressed with myself.

Can I just say a big thank-you to the world? I have everything I could ever need and I'm determined not to take any of it for granted. I'm going to have the best life ever if I can just keep learning and writing and loving and laughing.

So, not a life changer. But certainly it's settled some important things. I am a lucky girl living in a perfect world and I am trying my very best, always.

yer pal,
swegan :)