Wednesday, February 20, 2013

here's to you, life.

i started off the day by failing my spanish quiz  
(though i don't think anyone aced it, and that made me feel a bit better), 
so naturally, i got a dark roast coffee and an asiago bagel with veggie cream cheese to make it all better.
except it didn't... 
because shortly after i got a call from my dad. 
asking me to call my mom... 
to tell her that a dear family friend, one of her very best friends in prior years, had passed away... 
and that...that was weird. 
following her usual chipper greeting, "helllloooooo sweetieee!" 
i asked her to sit down & listen carefully...
and i stuttered, but somehow it spit it out...
how does a person go about telling a mother such a thing? 
(it's somehow different hearing it, but telling her. that's just cruel.)
so we cried. cried on the phone together. because we didn't know what else to do.  
and i kept repeating "i'm sorry, i'm so sorry"
and everyone in the BC was probably staring. 
but i didn't care. and i still don't. 
because that phone call really put things into perspective. 
life is a beautiful little thing...yet it can be taken away like that. 
so i picked myself up, pulled myself together and 
went to lit class and read Walt Whitman... and i really let his words resonate today. 
and that man, i tell ya, sure knew the heart & beauty of humanity. 
and even though i wasn't close with our dear friend in recent years, it hurts. 
it hurts because to truly care about someone you feel their hurt... 
but my mama is strong and will carry on. 
as we all do. 
here's to you life, may you be ever sweet to us all.  


                                  "Agonies are one of my changes of garmets,
                                    I do not ask the wounded person how he feels, I myself 
                                        become the wounded person.
                                   My hurts turn livid upon me as I lean on a cane and
                                        observe."
                                                     -Walt Whitman 

Monday, February 18, 2013

a book for your liking.

Last week, I had to write a book review for my American Literary Traditions class.  I've read Incidents  a few times, but it still gets me.  Tear jerker, for sure.  A classic that will never be forgotten.  
Read it.  Believe it.  Let it resonate, and may you leave forever changed. 
--- Included below is my review, check it --- 


Truth.  An arguably formless “something” nearly all of mankind has sought after since the beginning of time.   Interestingly, 10,000ish (or 3,000-5 million/billon, depending on your view of creation) years later, mankind continues to find itself in this same pursuit.   Appears a pretty important “something,” if you ask me. 
            Here’s the catch (there’s always a catch)—we don’t live our lives as if we actually want to understand truth.   Instead, humanity has this limited, idealistic view of truth.  We expect truth to come in the form of some single, powerful, wonderful, life-changing revelation.  And while I don’t wholly disregard this notion, I do believe truth is revealed to us via “little” pieces of truth, some of which aren’t as pretty and wonderful as we hope.  
            Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl is a presentation of just this—truth; Truth, which we, as Americans, aren’t so proud of—truth that we’d rather pack neatly in a box and stow away in the attack (or under the bed, depending how full your attack is).  Author Harriet Jacobs writes of her personal experience as a female slave during the 19th century.  Jacobs digs deep into the depths of American depravity and displays our wretchedness on a large, well-lit stage for all to see.  Notably, she explains in her preface that she does not tell her story because she wants pity, but rather, because she hopes her story will aid in the antislavery movement, which was taking place during the time of publication (1861). 
            In the first chapter of her memoir, Jacobs writes, “You don’t know a thing about it…We shall never be free.”  And that, dear readers, proves the plot of entire story.   Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl tells the story of Linda (Jacob’s cover name in the memoir), a slave in the South during the 1800s’.  The text describes Linda’s battle out of slavery, and ultimately, her battle with several foundational truths—truths still evident today—freedom, justice and responsibility. 
             One of the main incidents we read Jacobs delve into in her memoir is the sexual abuse she faced as a slave.  When judged by white women for her lack of “purity,” Jacobs replies, “O, ye happy women, whose purity has been sheltered from childhood, who have been free to choose the objects of your affection, whose homes are protected by law, do not judge the poor desolate slave girl too severely!”  This proves ironic, because the white women casting judgment are wives to the very men causing the harm.  Jacobs regards these women as ignorant, at best.
            The incidents Jacob describes—being pursued sexually by her master, having illegitimate relations with her lover, a white man, giving up her children for their own safety, hiding in a cellar for years on end so as to obtain freedom—these incidents peer deeply into the soul of humanity and quietly asks us to redefine human freedom.   How this redefinition plays out is still in question here in American today, only a different context(s).  Harriet Jacob’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl not only aided during the antislavery movement, but can help us today as well as we seek to provide and thrive in a free, just society.   



Thursday, February 14, 2013

vday




to those who care and are probably oh-so tired of hearing this today, happy vday!  i had myself a lovely little day filled with wonderful conversation, great friends, some awesome food (thanks dad for the chocolate-caramel covered apple & monson dc for being awesome), and speeeeech (team practice today).  while i think valentine's day is unbelievably overrated, i do think it is a nice time to reflect on all the love we give and receive in our lives.  
because that's what life's all about, folks. 
hope you had yourself a beautiful day. 
off to study for my spanish exam tomorrow. yayyyyyyyyy.
xoxo,
   rach 



Wednesday, February 13, 2013

this special little hump day.

you wanna know what i did today?  lots and lots and lots.  
today felt like it would (will not, i guess it's not over yet) never end. ever. 
first, i got up at 615am to move my car from parking lot to parking lot because we had a snow emergency on campus and they had to plow.
  that was FUNNNNN//
i then went to my 740am spanish class, and afterwards, grabbed some coffee and a bagel, naturally, because i got like -23948 hours of sleep the night before, and coffee and bagels fix everything, OBV. i then proceeded to do homework for a few hours, had lunch with a friend, snuck in a twenty minute nap where i didn't actually sleep but actually just lie there thinking about how tired i was and getting angry at the people who kept walking by my window waking me up. 
12PM IS A NATURAL TIME TO SLEEP PEOPLE.
 i then went to two classes, american literary traditions and media law.  once i sat down in american literary traditions, i realized i forgot my copy of the text we're covering.  and our prof gets mad when we forget our books.  and then some dude called me unconfident because i didn't wanna share my joke(s) in class. that is quite seriously the first time i've ever been titled unconfident.  ever. 
i proceeded to tell him that i was not unconfident (he thought that was sure strange, but i couldn't help it) and that my jokes were just awkward. 
SINCE WHEN DOES JOKE TELLING EQUAL CONFIDENCE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD. 
as for media law, well... need i saw more?  we're evaluating law cases and briefs.  EXCITINGGGGG.  said no one ever.  
i once thought about law school. HA! nope. not me. never. 
we had to present a mini-group project deal too.  and because no one was taking action, i assigned (or suggested, rather) roles. when i did this, one of the guys in my group just stared at me like i was hitler or something b/c he just wanted to sit there.
  I'M SORRY DUDE. THERE'S NO I IN GROUP PROJECTS. do your part, yo. 
i then came back to my dorm where i ate my feelings away with a delicious caramel-chocolate covered apple my pops gave me for v-day.  
and took a nap. but not really because i'm too tired to sleep.
and after much contemplation (i just spelt that comtelplation... #mydayinanutshell),
 sent a polite little email to career services to tell them i was not going to attend the seminar i'd signed up for this evening. 
BECAUSE I HAD A BUSY DANG DAY& WAS TOO TIRED 
and that felt good. 
and so i went on a little adventure outside and with my lovely little nikon and took some nice little pics. that helped. a lot. 
and now i'm hum awkwardly to myself because i have no idea how to end this in semi-decent way.
but i got nothin.  sooo i won't.  
but i do want to thank-you, readers, for listening to me, understanding me, through my posts 
(this rant included :/) 
you sure are a dear few. 
 enjoy... 


because books are fantastic. and so are boot socks.  

snowy trees. 
pretttyyy, ehh?


but in reality the snow is brown, slushy, gross and super icy.
this is the pathway to my dorm.
 i fall on this quite literally every time.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

the best cure for, well, anything: Books.


this semester i'm taking a lovely little lit course called american literary traditions taught by the most charming professor i've yet to encounter during my educational experience thus far. 
the other day as i was sitting in class, i was overwhelmed with pure joy. 
joy that i am given the opportunity to learn. 
joy that i get to take classes that interest me. 
joy for my love of knowledge. 
joy that i was raised on books
(yes, i was that annoying little girl who sat in the isles of Barns and Nobles reading book after book)
and love books yet today.
the other day, i was reading an excerpt from Black Boy for lit class.  
a line that kept replaying itself over and over and over again in my head goes, 
 "The impulse to dream had readily been beaten out by experience."
so vivid and clear it was to me at that moment. 
during our class discussion later that day, my professor explained literature as  
"a way of making sense of our world"
and that was it. 
no commentary. 
no whispers. 
no gum chomping crazies tweeting on their iPhones. 
just silence.
and ahhh, was it a wonderful silence.  
i'm ready to explore the world (and myself) through literature.  
here's to you, literature.  
glad we get to hang out for a semester.   
may i leave different, and better than when i came.  

Friday, February 1, 2013

welcome to the family!


word on the street is that these two lovelies are engaged.  
that's right, my bro finally put a ring on it (one heck of a ring if i do say so myself).  
so happy for them.  
being present for their growing together has been such a joy. 
can't wait to watch the future unfold.  
Al & Megan, you are a blessing to me. 
XOXO, 
     Rach