Tuesday, November 30, 2010

SALE: Friends! Buy one, get one free!



Friends, please, wake up and see this glaring reality!  What is happening to us?  I will tell you: we are slowly becoming an unbalanced society; everyone wants to be wanted, but no one is pursuing the want-ables!

Facebook is cheapening your friendships.  I can attest to a few things:

Prior to deleting my Facebook:
 1) I found out all major news/events in my peers' lives via Facebook, or word-of-mouth from someone else that saw this news on Facebook.
 2) When I wrote someone an email or a message I felt that I had met my quota for the week/month/year and that I no longer needed to be with this friend in person in order to catch up on our lives.
 3) I posted things on Facebook with the expectation that everyone would see them, so I no longer cared to inform my friends when important events took place in my life.
 4) Facebook gave me a general sense of community; I felt like I was with 150 friends every day and that I had all of the information about them that I needed.

These are such false senses of security!  We have stopped pursuing our closest friends because we have substituted the Internet in their place.  We find ways to jam pack each day and we do not factor in time to socialize and build relationships because we take them for granted and assume the Internet can fill that void.  This is so wrong!

Social networking sites have their advantages, and they do serve a good purpose.  But at what cost?  It is great that you can keep your extended family and long-distance friends updated instantly, but what about the people that you call your "close friends?"  How often do we really set aside time to with JUST one person at a time to find out where they are at?

I think I have four real friends.

I feel like my "friends" no longer think it is necessary to communicate with me.  Deleting my Facebook has shown me who my friends are.  Or rather, it's shown me where peoples' priorities lie.  It is very easy to find me, when you need something that I can give you.  Yeah, we have busy schedules. Yeah, you aren't my boyfriend and you aren't my best friend.  But at one time you poured out your heart and you told me I was an important part of your life.  So why don't you act like it?  Maybe this is my love language, maybe it's just how I was raised; if you care about me you will pursue me and keep in TOUCH.

I don't think that I am any kind of exception to this.  We all want to be wanted.  I love it when people seek ME out as opposed to me always having to tex or call them.  We all want to know that someone is thinking about us often.  Here I differ and I say that I don't want to just be a name that you think about as you scroll by me in the news feed.  I want to be pursued, I want to be loved.  Please stop throwing this word around, please start cherishing your friends. 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Something I Think About

Whenever I watch movies where the main character is either sick or hungover, resulting in a sick day where they sleep the day away in bed, I am overcome with the desire to be in that situation.  Now that is an awful thing to say.
I don’t understand it but the idea of an entire day of selfish rest is so seductive to me.  A day where I don’t have any obligations or tasks, where I don’t have to please anyone but myself, where I get to sleep, eat, and heal,… sadkfjhsdfkjh AH! I just want one of those days!
I remember when I was in my freshman year philosophy class and my teacher said that our minds are capable of great things.  If you are a hypochondriac that constantly worries about getting cancer, or (at the time) H1N1, you have a greater chance of actually contracting that illness because dwelling on those type of thoughts has an interesting effect on our brains.  Our brains see in images, not words or thoughts.  Therefore, what we see is what we get.  When a cigarette smoker sees the “no smoking” sign (a cigarette with a slash through it), it immediately compels them to want to take a smoke break.  The image of a cigarette places that thought process in motion.  When someone asks you what you want to eat, don’t reply “anything but Chinese food!” because then they immediately picture their plate of shrimp fried rice, and all of a sudden they are in the mood for some.  Our brains take images and turn them into reality.  They are trying to help us out, but sometimes something goes wrong.  If you picture yourself sick in bed with the flu, your body (this is scientific) lowers its resistance and actually makes itself viable to contracting a disease or illness, so that it can acquire for you what you want, or what you keep thinking about. 
It's interesting for me to think about.  It’s an interesting perspective.

Sunday, November 7, 2010


When I am upset or violated or hurt in some way, it is very hard to let go.  I wouldn't call it a grudge, persay, but I definitely remember it and I consider it the next time that I see this person, or the next time I am in this situation.

In a categorical sense, each violation is similar to a balloon in the fact that it will keep growing bigger and bigger over time and I begin to feel [inside] as if I am going to pop.  And sometimes I do.  I pop and let it out and whoever happens to be around will get the brunt of my anger.

But if you happen to be the person who has violated me, I think all that I want is an apology.  Because I notice that as soon as I get this apology, while I maintain the memory of it, I deflate quickly and we move along.  It's simple, really.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

My Thoughts on Third World Suffering

About a month ago my geography class watched a documentary on something relating to the blood diamonds of Africa, and the brutality involved.  My memory is a little hazy as to how this correlates, but there was a certain part where the hands, arms, and feet of certain children were being chopped off to pay the debt that they or their parents owed to the government.  I cringed while watching it and I couldn't watch much, but what's more [sad] is that I couldn't believe it...literally.  I mean, I could not fathom the idea that there are places on earth where that is actually happening and is somewhat expected.  I walked from class to my car, in comfy clothes, listening to my iPod, and when I got home I cooked myself a nice lunch and then relaxed and went on the computer.  That is NORMAL to me.  Getting limbs chopped off will never be NORMAL.

I began thinking more and more about this and what I could do, if anything, to prevent it.  And I began feeling very helpless, because I know that I alone and can't do anything.  And before you stop reading, thinking that this is just one of those blogs where I'm going to rally support and encourage us to do anything collectively about it, I'll tell you, it's not that.  I am actually kind of pathetic in the sense that I don't intend this blog to arouse any feeling of activity in anyone, or myself, I'm just trying to display my thoughts on something that upset me.  It's rare that I get "upset" like this about stuff, seeing as I'm usually very passive and calm (what an introvert!) and have been desensitized to a lot of hurt in the world.

I think about our culture and how we "view" these things that are happening in other "worlds" and how maybe for the hour that we are sitting in class, we feel sympathetic, or rather, empathetic, but then we walk out the door and forget about it.  But really, what more can we do?  I am a college student with little to no money to my name.  I am not about to go start an activist group, or get on a plane to Kenya, or send money and food to kids there.  I have insufficient resources to do anything like that.  But maybe there's more?

What bugs me is the ignorance.  I myself included, but which I notice also in so many of my peers, have become so ignorant to the suffering of anyone else other than ourselves and the people in our immediate surroundings.  Out of sight out of mind?  I call it ignorance.  Or, selective pathos.  I was about to type selective love, but I realize that is an oxy-moron, as love is never selective.

So I've start thinking about it more often.

I start thinking about my good and loving God, and how he has placed everyone where they are and for a reason.  And then I say WHY? Why me here, and them there?  He has placed me in a middle class family in suburbia, getting basically everything I want.  I kind of feel bad about the fact that I live like this when others are born into a lifestyle of suffering, but then I don't because I wasn't in charge of it.  How can I feel bad for something I did not have any part in choosing?  I think instead I feel blessed.  If I feel bad about anything, it's that I don't thank my loving God for blessing me in my circumstance.  I am blessed that I wake up in a bed and I am more than well fed, when some kids wake up in a desert forest, hungry, fearing for their life and limbs, daily.

There is nothing that I can do about their circumstance.  Sure, I can go on missions trips, or I could donate money when I eventually come into some, but realistically I know that I have to take this as a blessing and just continue praying for the others who have less.

I think that the worst possible way to respond to the blessing I have received, in living the way I do, would be to speak of others' suffering with no sensitivity, or to continue pretending like it does not exist.  To make crude jokes, which I have occasionally done, or allow others to do it themselves.  Maybe I cannot make a big difference in a flashy, opulent way, but I can pray for them and I can accept my mistreatments without complaining.  I guess the whole thing I've got here was just a new perspective.  It really makes you see your period cramps in a different way when you know there's a little girl who's not only bleeding out of her uterus but also out of her arm, where her hand used to be.