Scatter Brain

I haven’t updated my blog in a while. The truth is I have lacked inspiration. Many days I have opened up my laptop, ready to make a post and then… nothing. Nada. Zip. Even today as I write, I’m kind of just letting the words fall out where they lay. Safe to say, my thoughts will be very scattered here. My thoughts have been very scattered in general. So many things have been on my mind lately that I haven’t really thought of anything.  That sounds like a contradiction but it’s the best way I can explain my thought process.
Thought. It’s an interesting concept in itself. I was on the bus today and was thinking about what sets us humans apart from the rest of the animal kingdom. I mean some could say our personalities but I think a valid argument could be made claiming animals have personalities as well. I mean, cats have attitude (I hate them), dogs are like little kids, cheeky but lovable, etc. No, I think what sets us apart is the fact that we are aware. Aware of ourselves, of the world. I’m not talking about the fact that we know we are alive. Animals know that. That’s what sets them (us?) apart from plants and stuff; but humans, we are aware. We think. We think past how to survive, find a mate and reproduce. Past the current situation at hand. We think abstract. We philosophize. We dream.
It’s actually pretty beautiful. Humans are an amazing, remarkable species. The fact that we have this ability tells us that there’s more to life than the laws of physics and biology (there’s chemistry and math too, JK, but you know what I mean). Back to the whole abstract thinking thing, it’s such an overlooked phenomenon that makes us special. Almost perfect.
However, then you turn on the news and see, well, everything. The tears, violence, disease, hunger. Hate. It’s like out special ability has evolved into this grotesque thing that far from what it was intended to me. Our ability to dream has allowed us to discover more ways to hurt. But even despite it all, I think, no, I know that there’s still hope for us.
We are all redeemable. I truly believe that.
This is a really short post. I apologize. I’m not gonna put a song or a quote with it. Just some food for thought:

In this broken world, how can we possibly be redeemable?

Book Worm Love

I love reading, I really do and admittedly, I have fallen prey to many of the book fandom craziness that have swept the world. Hunger Games, read it (though in my defense it was when it was only mildly popular and way before the first movie.) Series of unfortunate events, Narnia, all read when I was 10-11. Alex Rider series. Percy Jackson. Divergent. Fault in our Stars. All of them and a bunch of other obscure series that no one’s really heard of (because I’m hipster like that). Didn’t do Harry Potter though, nothing against it just wasn’t allowed to read it when I was younger and by the time I was, the craze had died down and didn’t feel the need to, though one day I will. Twilight. No. Okay, my introduction to twilight was around the time the first movie came out. All my friends were reading it; I was in middle school so I thought, why not? Watched the first two movies, found it boring; read half of the first book, fell asleep. I just couldn’t get myself into it and Edward creeped me out with his stalking thing. I mean, I’d personally be like:

What I do remember doing is Wikipedia-ing the ending. Okay, was I the only person who thought it was weird, no, disturbing that Jacob fell in love with an infant? Sure she grew up fast and all but she was a BABY!!! Why are we seeing this glorification of pedophilia and just being like aww, it’s so sweet. They are imprinted forever.  That’s more of a nope moment.

I think the Youtuber, Alex Day also ruined it for me because of his series a couple years ago. That was also when any shred of respect for it completely left. I prefer to keep my brain cells, thank you very much and go read some… Shakespeare or something.
I know it sounds like I threw in Shakespeare as a random, well referenced author but I do legitimately like reading him, especially the comedies. (Favourite play is As You like It) His stories are humorous and clever and somehow relatable, all written in beautiful language—though admittedly, sometimes you need a little SparkNotes to appreciate that beauty. Now when I ask you for the name of a Shakespearean play, I’m sure one of the first ones you think about is Romeo and Juliet. That could possibly be the only one I absolutely hate that he wrote. Okay, he must have been slightly high when he wrote that. I think the thing I hate about it the most isn’t the plot itself, it’s more the fact that it has become the epiphany of what love is and that annoys me. Romeo and Juliet were just a bunch of hormonal teenagers who got so many people killed because they couldn’t wait.
 I mean let’s just analyze the ending, (*spoiler alert* but honestly if you don’t know how it ends, that is pretty sad because it’s been out for centuries and is a famous literary work.) Romeo finds Juliet ‘dead’ and kills himself in sorrow, she wakes up and sees him really dead and then kills herself in sorrow. Initial reaction: WTF? Okay, do you know how that story starts? Romeo was in love with some other random girl called Rosaline who wanted to be a nun so that couldn’t work. He met Juliet at a party his friend took him to so he could forget his troubles. Juliet is the freaking rebound girl. THE REBOUND GIRL.  Take that in. It took lover boy Romeo a whole afternoon to get over Rosaline. So if he had just used his common sense and been like, “oh Juliet’s dead. So sad. I’ll mourn her now but life goes on (and you know another girl could walk right in and I’ll ‘fall’ for her too).” Then Juliet would have woken up by now and it would be a happily ever after! Yay! But no, he had to be a stupid teenager. I mean he was what? 15? And Juliet was like 13? And let’s go back to the fact that it was THREE DAYS! Not even a week! Why are these people the romanticized image of love? I do not think at 13 or 15 you know what love is. You might know crush or infatuation or even lust but not love, at least not that kind.
Yeah, so that rant went off but it had to be made. My point is—I don’t even know anymore. Basically, Valentine’s Day is coming soon and I think the whole forever alone-ness moping part of me is creeping out. Anyway, love is… not something you find in 3 days at 13-15 years of age and is not some creepy guy watching you sleep. Also books are cool.
Yup, that was the point I was making. (It was probably gonna be some inspirational thing about the power of books and words but whatever).
Song of the Post: S.A.D. by Joseph Vincent
Quote of the Post:Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.-Albert Einstein

In Hindsight

Happy 2014 everyone!

Can I first express how disappointed I am with technology? Hello, where are the holographic video chats and the flying cars? I was really looking forward to a new hoverboard for Christmas. C’mon Science! You’re slacking.

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, I wanted to do a little recap on 2013 and what this new year means to me… all that sentimental mumbo jumbo. Everyone seems to be talking about how 2013 was such a bad year with all the deaths and natural disasters. I admit it wasn’t the roaring 20’s but 2013 was an ok year. Like every year it had its ups and downs, but what year doesn’t? Here’s what 2013 was for me, the good and bad:

This is small on the grand scale of thing but if I hear “Blurred Lines” again I think I’m gonna shoot myself. I think a little part of my soul dies a little every time it comes on. There were others that were abominations to the Arts but that one particularly irks me. 

On the more serious side of things, a lot of people died this year, and I don’t just mean the famous ones. It’s sad, but I think what’s more sad is the fact that some people’s lives were considered more valuable than others. Don’t get me wrong, my heart goes out to the families of all those celebrities that died, but it also goes out to the others. Where’s the mourning for the infants that die every day in a developing country because they didn’t get the right facilities to cure a disease as simple as the common cold. Or the newly orphaned family who’s mum died of HIV/AIDS. Then there’s the death of Nelson Mandela. He was a great man and an inspiration to us all. However, I don’t understand why everyone was so sad about his life. He lived a long and fulfilling life, we should be celebrating it, not mourning it. Nelson Mandela isn’t a man who died, He LIVED!

National Disasters were another wave tragedy in 2013. They were devastating, I’m not gonna argue that. However, the human race is faced with great tragedies every year. I think it says more of how we deal with it and the triumph of the human spirit. Even with all the horror, I say many band together to help those in need. Now let’s not argue the merits of charities and if all the money got to them, but the fact that people went out of the way to help and donate to the cause is what we should be discussing.

This year is honestly a blur to me. I know it’s not been the best because I remember being sad or mad or whatever but I can’t remember what I was mad or sad or whatever about (real intellectual sentence right there). I make me think how insignificant that was in the grand scale of things. Like the ice storm we had here in Toronto.  Sure it sucked and we lost power but at the same time it forced me—and others I bet—to actually spend time with their family this holidays. I know the whole “silver linings” explanation usually sounds so terribly cliché but I warned you this post will be filled with sentimental mumbo jumbo. The anwswer don’t always have to be grand and mind blowing, sometimes it’s something we already know but choose to ignore.

Now on the positive side of things, these are more personal than the above ones. 2013 was a good year for friendship in my life. Not only did I wake a lot of new friends but my friendship with current ones really blossomed. I have a lot of friends who were just people I didn’t really know but hanged out with but I think on a more emotional level, I got to know many of them this year. I guess it’s because it’s going on my third year in one place which is an achievement for me. I’ve only stayed 3 years in one school once before and this will be the last time because of me graduating and all. It was also a great year for new friends. You know how you have these connections with people where you click and become amazing friends in such a short period of time, well that happened to me a lot this year. It must be because of all the camps and the mission trip I went on and being forced to spend time with the same people around the clock. What’s even more amazing is the fact that I still kept in contact with a lot of them which usually doesn’t happen. I’m tired of regretting cultivating friendships that could have been so I decided to change that. This year was also one of life changing experiences. True, I had to travel to another side of the world to experience it, but it happened none the less. So yeah, I guess 2013 was a good year for me. I dunno how it was for you, but what I do know is that no matter how bad things get, there truly is a silver lining.
Sorry for the cheesiness with extra cheese.

Quote of the Post: “I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.”- Nelson Mandela

The Value of life

So the hashtag “pray to end abortion” was trending on Twitter today. I’ve always been very passionate about the subject, so naturally, I checked out people’s tweets to see the varying opinions. Reading people tweets made me angry, and then frustrated and then plain sad… disappointed. Now, to clarify my personal stance on the subject, I’m pro-life. 

Now let’s cue the so called feminist beliefs about how I’m not respecting a woman’s choice, it’s her body, yada yada yada. I’m sorry if that sounds insensitive but that’s just a load of bull. However, will defend myself against this point because otherwise, you’ll just right me off as another brainwashed conservative (which, honestly, I don’t think I’m conservative in most of my beliefs, but that’s another story). Back time feminism. The reason people give to why a woman should have control over her own body is because if she’s having this unplanned baby, she’s ruining her life. I heard many pro choice people say how we reduce women to baby bearing vessels when we’re all like they must have that baby! I’m response, “what?” Isn’t the fact that a woman’s life could be destroyed because she had a baby just a reflection of how anti feminist our society is. Why can’t someone be a mother and a career woman? Why must our culture shun single women instead of help them? And, why should someone who had sex-knowing that there is a possibility of getting pregnant-be allowed to erase that mistake so easily. Again, I’m sorry if that sound insensitive, but you kind of made your bed, now you have to sleep in it-no pun intended. If I slacked around in school and ended up never going to post secondary or getting a good job and all that, it’s my own fault. There’s no way to erase it, no get out of jail free card, and quite frankly, this part of the argument just annoys me because there is no real substance to it.

Now I know what you’re going to say next, what if she was raped? It’s funny how that’s always the argument even though you know that not all abortionists are rape victims. Nevertheless, it’s a valid point. My response is simple: why should an innocent infant have to suffer the consequences of his/her father’s actions. People are protesting against North Korea’s 3 generation punishment law and here are we practicing a variation of it. 


Now, here comes the part I’m most passionate about, defending the rights of the unborn itself. The thing that angers me the most is when people say it’s not a baby. As if it’s not human. As if its DNA is that of a -Irk-a fish and it randomly becomes a human after it’s born (or 3rd trimester, depending on the people). It’s human! granted it’s at a different stage of development, but it’s still human! How it’s age or where it currently occupying changing that. How is the value of life determined by a detail as meaningless as that. Is my life more valuable than my sister’s because I’m at a higher stage of development? After all, I’ve gone through puberty, she hasn’t. That’s absurd, right?! Exactly! So how is that any different? And don’t give me that crap of it being part of a woman’s body. Yes, the mother is holding the body and they are connected physically but the baby is not part of it. I’m all for a woman being allowed to do what she wants with her life but it’s not HER life she’s affecting, it’s her unborn child!
Ok, I lied. It is hers to. My last, point I guess, that I want  To leave you with is the lie that people give women about abortion. That it’s easy and that it’s not That  big of a deal. First of all, that’s a sick ideology. Secondly, uh… no. Abortion affects the mother emotionally forever. Every woman I’ve met who’s had one(and I’ve volunteered at help centers for pregnant single women) regrets it. Their conscience is forever plagued.
Now, surprisingly, I’m not saying we should revoke the law. I’d rather girls get it at a hospital or clinic with the right facilities instead of a dingy basement so they don’t die as well. If someone wants an abortion, they’re going to find a way. What I am saying is we need to educate people on the true implications of it. So I ask you, “How much do you value life?

Well, ok, I’m done with my rant. Sorry, about that.
Song of the post: “Lucy” by Skillet
Quote of the post: “A person’s a person, no matter how small.” –Dr. Seuss. (I know he was’t specifically talking about this but it applies non the less)


“How can the “Dream” survive if we murder the children? Every aborted baby is like a slave in the womb of his or her mother. The mother decides his or her fate.” –Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (before you say it was his niece that said that, I did the research, she said it was something HE told her)

Survival of Fittest-er- all of us

First of all, I extend my utter most apologies for not updating in God knows how long. What’s worse is, I’m writing at the moment, not with a current theme or topic in mind but out of obligation. 
Ah, obligation… that word that reminds us that we have responsibilities. That other people depends on us or something we have to offer. Oh, what’s that? You have no responsibilities? No one really depends on you?
Lets take a second to analyse that concept. A lot of us live very selfish lives. “It’s all about me” right? It’s a “Dog eat dog” world, and you’re just looking out for yourselves and your loved ones. After all, it’s the way nature works..  survival of the fittest and all that.
Well, I disagree with that philosophy. I believe that the fact we can-if we choose to be- totally selfless and self sacrificing is what separates us from all the other animals.
Now back to the subject of obligations, as a human being, a universal duty you share with the rest of the species is your duty to the other. An ethicist, Immanuel Kant wrote about the concept of duty and it’s applications to a person’s search for a purpose. Another philosopher, Emmanuel (yes, I noticed the share a first name) Levinas went on to talk about a person’s responsibility to the other and the “face”-how simply seeing a person’s face can make a huge impact on ones conscience. Now I just threw at you two watered down major views on ethics; what I simply want you to get out of that Mambo jambo is that it’s our job to Take care of the less fortunate. It’s sad we don’t think like that. 

One of my biggest pet peeves is when celebrities are applauded for their “charity work” while they live in an arbitrarily grandiose home and all the bells and whistles that come with It. Don’t talk to me about the 1 million dollars you gave to charity-which, lets be honest, was probably due to the tax breaks you’ll get and the good publicity- when you spend millions on a wedding for a marriage that only lasts 72 days-yes I’m looking at you Kim Kardashian. It’s actually disgusting to watch. 
Now, I’ll stop myself before this ranty  part gets out of hand. So, I bet some of  you are thinking something along the lines of “Natalie, you’re being unreasonable. They worked for their money-we all do- we should be able to spend it, achieved the American dream and all that.” 
Well, this brings me back to my original point, we all live selfish existences. Why is our life goals directly on getting a good job for ME. Finding MY true love. Getting MYSELF a good home, etc. Not to say that those are bad things, they’re great… if that’s what we truly want. But it’s not. Don’t lie, you want more. You don’t want a comfortable home, you want a mansion. A good economy care, no, a sports one or whatever. We are so consumed with us, we forget-or try to- the other. Why is it such a big deal to bring 2 cans of food to school for the poor families in your community. Or to pay $2-two Freaking bucks- for dress down day. Or why do we do Just the bare minimum. We need to move away from this culture of self and to us-or as Mark Kielburger would say, ME to WE. This is where our humanity lies. Not in a fat bank account or in the empty rooms of a house to big for your family, but in the face of your neighbour-even if that neighbour is In a hut in Namibia.
So let’s quit with this survival of the fittest nonsense, and move to the survival of all of us. 🙂

Song of the Post: We are the World by Michael Jackson (Cliche, I know)
 Quote of the Post:  “Humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less. Humility is thinking more of others.” and “When you give someone your time, you are giving them a portion of your life that you’ll never get back.Your time is your life. That is why the greatest gift you can give someone is your time” 
― Rick Warren

Re-evaluating Imagination

I don’t think I’m going to do the whole Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy—well, maybe her—with my kids… if I have any. You must be flabbergasted at that statement. Why would I deprive my future kids of their childhood? Well, why would I encourage some fantasy to my kids that I’m just going destroy and devastate them later on in life? I know that sounds weird—like I’m talking in terms of an adult not a kid, but I never believed in Santa or the Easter Bunny. Nobody told me they weren’t real, I just was a logical child about stuff like that. The only one that got me was the tooth fairy because ‘she’ visited me at a friend’s house and it baffled me how even when I wasn’t home, I still got money.
However, I still had a great childhood. In a way, knowing that it was my parents who put those presents under the tree or hid the chocolate eggs at Easter was better. I mean, even when times were hard and I knew my parents were struggling financially, there would still be gifts on the best day of the year. You can’t help but feel loved. I mean if I wanted say—an iPad—for Christmas, but my parents couldn’t afford it but they get me a bunch of clothes and smaller gifts instead, you know how much they care and the gifts mean so much more. If I believed in Santa, I would feel terrible because…c’mon, it’s SANTA, he’s loaded, where’s my iPad? Being a child, I would be so broken hearted, maybe even throw a tantrum. It’s just not worth the supposed ‘magic’ of believing.
Why should I believe in a mythical creature anyway? What is this magic you speak of? So I believe in a fat old man and his little helpers, or a bunny that somehow has loads of eggs to give—where does he even get the eggs from? He’s like some master thief or something—I digress. Is the magic of the holidays what they represent? Christmas and the gift God gave us, Easter and the Sacrifice He made? Why don’t we encourage this part of the holidays? Why isn’t generosity—‘tis better to give than to receive—, love, joy, thankfulness, etc promoted instead?
Anyway, back to my childhood. I was a happy child. I grew up normally. I know I said I was logical and all, but I also had an imagination. Remember pretending the ground was lava—I still do that—or building a fort/cave thingy-ma-bob out of pillows and couch cushions? That was my thing! I remember pretending to be a spy, a princess, a mum, an animal with my friends. I loved the game of make-believe. I need to be LIED to by my parents in order to have a great childhood.
The long and short of it is, I’m pretend Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, etc are real. I’ll tell them about it, I mean, they still have to watch great movies like The Santa Claus; Elf; Rise of the Guardians, etc, but just for fun, for enjoyment.
Or maybe I’m being overly logical.
Quote of the Post: Imagination is more important than knowledge… Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.—Albert Einstein

Soul Searching Encounter

Hello people of the internet. So, I know it’s been a while since my last update, mainly because I’m a major procrastinator. In this post, I’m going to do something a little bit different. In my Writer’s Craft class, we have this exercise where we get a couple minutes of free writing in which my teacher gives us a topic and we write whatever comes to mind. Unfiltered thoughts and expression. I’d like to share with you my latest one which turned out a lot better than I expected. It was one of those bursts of inspiration that couldn’t stop flowing. So here it is- keep in mind this is unedited and uncensored (there is no inappropriateness, just my thoughts are kind of all over the place)

The topic was “A chance encounter which changes a person’s life”

Have you ever walked in a crowd and still felt so alone? Even when you’re with your friends, you sometimes feel isolated. Have you ever considered though, “maybe it’s my own fault? Maybe the only reason I feel lonely is because I’m not opening up to people”
Opening up to people is hard though, when you know them- when you value their friendship. Maybe they will think you’re weird, maybe you’ll lose that relationship. Sometimes, the best way to open up and get all that’s bothering you off your chest is by talking about it to a stranger. With this, you have nothing to lose, so why not?

So you go, into the world looking for a onetime confidante. A friendship only meant to last a moment. You find yourself in a park on the other side of town; one you have never visited. There is a solitary bench under an oak tree already changing colours for fall. You sit.

Another person sits next to you. You don’t look up to see who it is. You don’t even know if it is a man or woman. You start to speak. “Can I talk to you” you say, “just about what’s going on with me right now?”

The person doesn’t speak, but makes no move so you take that as an approval.

You begin to tell your story. Where you were born, your family-whom you feel are weird, your beliefs –that you’re unsure of, your plans for the future-which scare you. You confide with this stranger about your problems and your fears, your dreams and your interest, even your secrets that only you know. You even tell them what you had for breakfast this morning.

You tell them the story of you.

All through it, not a word is spoken by this unknown individual. No reaction is made, whether positive or negative. They simply listen. They simply accept.

You, comfortable in this atmosphere of accepting facts as they are, have a chance to stop on contemplate the last few moments. You’ve never had a chance to really lay yourself right out there. By telling this stranger about you, you’ve also explained part of you to yourself. For the first time, you feel like you can understand yourself just a little bit more.

You inhale, taking a deep breath as your eyes close instinctively. You feel a strange sense of peace, as if a burden has been lifted off you. You realize one has, for the first time, you were completely honest with yourself. 

You exhale.

You tell the stranger thank you. You and the hidden person get up and head in opposite directions. Your paths never intertwine again.

You are content with this fact.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
So that’s it. I honestly don’t know what to make about this journal yet for some weird reason, I felt it was something worth sharing.

Song of the Post: Somewhere Only We Know by Keane
Quote of the Post: “We sometimes encounter people, even perfect strangers, who begin to interest us at first sight, somehow suddenly, all at once, before a word has been spoken.” -Fyodor Dostoevsky