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BlackEagle5374

Catching up with my Train of Thoughts

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Artistic

As someone who is artistic, there is probably going to be the occasional drawing/painting/photo posting. Some are completely drawn, while others only partially. Some by hand, others by tablet

Differences in Age Difference

Ever notice that someone might look different? Ever notice that someone learns the material in a different way? Or that someone is somehow able to remember everything they read? 

On a daily basis, one might say that others look different because they have a different background. Maybe they are born in another region, with different parents, and who speak another language. Simple, right? 

Not to everyone. 

Among kids, I notice that they don’t think as we do (not yet, anyways). When they see someone who’s taller, wider, skinnier, darker, paler, speaks another language – anyone who’s different, a lot of them will start to ask questions. 

As someone in Sociology, it might be exciting to see kids wanting to understand more of the diversity in the small world around them. But from their point of view, they might not have seen anyone who was that different from them. 

When they do ask such questions, sometimes the adult tells them to take it back & apologize, as though they meant an insult in asking that. 

When I was asked why I was Chinese, I told the child that the answer would be a very long one. However, it is indeed a good question – for someone of whom that doesn’t have any relatives who are actually from China, why am I Chinese? It would make for an interesting sociological study, but for the child, he was told that it’s because my relatives from long ago are from China (close enough, I would think). 

Back in the adult world, those kind of questions are rarely asked, maybe because we’ve all had similar experiences as the child mentioned before. Maybe we don’t ask those questions because we’re afraid to be taken the wrong way or that we would be seen as rude. 

By reflecting, I start to think that a lot of us are expected to know society’s norms and morals by the time we reach adulthood. However, as I quickly learn in University, everybody has different norms and values that they brought from home. What seems normal to one person from China might seem awkward and uncomfortable to another person who was born and raised here in Canada (and the same vice versa). 

To say that we grow to ignore differences is to say that we grow to become blind. Maybe instead, it might be better to say that we accept or overlook the differences to make connections with people of whom have stories that, to us, are dreams that we hope to one day achieve or experience. 

My pile of good and bad things

The way I see it, life is a pile of Good Things & Bad Things.

The Good Things don’t necessarily make the Bad Things unimportant, but vice versa, the Bad Things don’t necessarily spoil the Good Things

~The Doctor & Van Gogh

Ever have a string of bad things happen? Ever wonder why it is that it is almost always bad and never good? What about the opposite?

A lot happened, I won a mini-speakers, I lost a precious scarf, I nearly failed a class, I was promoted while volunteering, I took down my customized desk… The list goes on. As the Doctor told Amy after finding out that nothing could be done to save Van Gogh, “Life is a pile of good things & bad things.”

Last November, I was scrolling on Facebook, as 99% of my generation do, I saw a post by a local radio group/page/host (a.k.a. The Beat 92.5) that made a brief mention of a project of sorts that reminded me of what the Doctor told Amy on that day.

The project starts with a jar, paper and a pen. Over the course of a year, you would fill that jar of all of the good things that happened. At the end of the year, the jar would be filled with little bits of paper of moments when good things happened. The last part of this project would be to empty it and look at all the little pieces, reading them once more about how awesome the day was over the year.

Since it was close to the end of 2015, I wanted to run a bit of a trial run, so I bought a jar, some paper and a pen and did exactly what the project described. Around New Year’s I opened it up… and found myself with a lot of pride, laughter and happiness with every little piece that I read.

But then, shortly after New Year’s, I lost my scarf. That day, I kind of spent a while moping  in my room. I wanted to get it back, for sure, but I also felt like this wasn’t something I should brush aside and forget it. It was then that I decided to tweak the project that I had going on.

Now, the jar is still filled with bits of paper, but the content of the papers are written in Green and Red. Green was for the moments when something good happened and Red was for something bad happened. The reason why was that, when it gets the end of the year, it’s no longer a pile of red and green, but looks more like the colours of Christmas, which always made me happy.

Everyday, things happen to us. They can be good and they can be bad, but that’s not to say that we should forget that it happened in the first place. When they do happen, we often reflect, thinking of the reason why and what to do for the next time (to prevent or to make it happen again). I felt that by having a jar with all of these things in it, I become more aware of what happens every year and become just a little bit more appreciative of all the things that happened to me, whether good or bad.

Searching for THE ONE… or onesssss

Ever hear of the term “the Chosen One”? Or spend hours looking for that one special thing? Or read a story that talks about two individuals being the perfect match for each other? Ever hear that kids should know what they want to do in the future?

In a time where novels are published almost on a daily basis, we seem to have an idea planted into our heads that we need to find the one. Now, it could be the one true love, the one perfect house, the number one purpose, or the one next specialty in University. To make matters even worse, some of the people in our lives insist that we know what that special one (person, job, place…) at an early point of our lives!

But do we really need to? Characters like The Doctor from Doctor Who or Flynn Carson from The Librarians are individuals of whom have a loooong and wide background, having a bit of experience in many fields. Surely, it takes a long time to obtain all of those degrees, but they could never decide on one field. The Doctor could be a teacher or a general (an actual doctor is questionable) while Flynn was a Professor and an enthusiastic searcher for relics before he became The Librarian.

In real life, I’ve met people who have several bachelors and are in a completely different profession. For example, one has a background in Fine Arts & Psychology… she’s working at the University! Another example is someone of whom spent a lot of his time in the business field (accountancy, I believe) and is now happily working as an academic adviser. I have yet another third friend of whom is pursuing a second degree while successfully shuffling two teaching jobs!

If you’re the kind to read/watch manga/anime, you might be familiar with the scene where characters within a high school are asked what it is that they want to do in life as a career. Sometimes, I wish that schools in my area had that so we didn’t have to face the same decision later on in life, being forced to spend a lot of hard-earned time and money… but at the same time, making that decision at a later point is a moment where we would have more life experience and maybe more knowledge of the many jobs in the surrounding area.

So, what to do with the quest to find THE ONE? Your choice – you could choose one and go for it; you could do a little of everything like The Doctor or Flynn – the possibilities are endless. Finding the one soul mate is another story, which for some is as complicated as River and The Doctor or as simple as love at first sight. Don’t limit it to one, try two or three – just one is too hard, whereas three is something of which can be worked on and merged together… just needs a little ingenuity

With Power Comes Responsibility

Ever wish that the right person would hear the whispers of the world? Ever find that, when it suddenly becomes a loud voice, that there’s a sudden desire for it to quiet down again?

As cliche as it may be, the saying “With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility” from Spiderman might hold some truth to it.

IMG_0422The MBA ICC came to a close last Friday, which brought some sadness and happiness since it was fast-paced, but very enjoyable. I heard many times that I might be promoted the next time I volunteer for the event (hopefully next year), meaning that I would be a Lead Volunteer next time.

Truth be told, I’ve no idea what that title means, but I would assume that it comes with more responsibilities and more tasks. I’ve always worked in the background & was never promoted so quickly. As quickly as my excitement came, so did dread… that I couldn’t keep up with their expectations, whatever they would be.

No matter the environment, when it comes to a change in position, especially upwards in the hierarchy, it can be terrifying because it may mean different environment and different rules. It could mean that more reliability and more publicity, and less leeway. All of those can lead the despair of meeting the future expectation, even when they aren’t even known yet. When in that new position, you could find yourself overwhelmed… or maybe it’s not as hard as you imagined it to be. Maybe, with time, it’ll become easier and comfortable.

With power comes responsibility, regardless if it’s with Peter becoming Spiderman or another Peter becoming an Honour Student, it can be nerve-wracking. While it might seem terrifying in our heads, we don’t know for sure until we try it. As a friend told me, “If you don’t try, you won’t know.”

 

An ulterior motive.. or not

Ever hear of the characters in  a story that manipulates others into doing their bidding? Ever hear of the characters in the stories that always say positive things, never negative? Ever hear of the expression “politeness is mistaken for flirtation”?

In a world where every possibility, every outcome has become a novel/movie/song, every action is taken into question, wondering if the person has an ulterior motive. Maybe it’s different elsewhere, but it seems as though any action, whether good or bad, has a cost and that nothing is free for either parties (those giving and those receiving).

As one of the many volunteers in the MBA ICC, I was given many compliments for doing a good job. I was more than happy to hear that, but I couldn’t help but wonder of the reason for all of those compliments. As a social science student, I know a few things about behaviours and reasons behind them, but I couldn’t find any reasons that would be an ulterior motive.

Then, I started to think of what I had done over the little time that I had been there. To me, they seemed insignificant, minor, but is it all too impossible that they might be viewed differently by others? Could it be that I’m too critical on my actions?

More questions than answers – why not neither? While today is a world where the media shows every possibility, sometimes the result is a simple one. Maybe someone gives a compliment just for the sake of making someone smile; maybe someone adopts a pet from a shelter for companionship; maybe someone gives a compliment to show another’s value from another angle. Maybe… they just do that act of kindness because they want to – no other reason.

“I’m walking a tightrope, I’m counting on high hopes~”

“I feel like I’m walking tightrope,

My heart is in my throat, 

I’m counting on high hopes to get me over you.”

~ Man On A Wire by The Script

Ever have something (or somethings) stay the same for long periods of time? Ever have a period of time where things were frequently, if not constantly changing? Ever wish that things were more routine or more unpredictable?

It seems like complaining of change or routine is something that a lot of humans seem to share (myself included). While we are adaptable by nature, too many changes can make us exhausted and too long of a routine can make us bored. 

As a student, school (High School/College/University)… Would it be just to say that they love irregularity? And, somehow, some student manage to keep a consistent routine and keep a good grade. While one option could be to shake the answers out of those particular students (only in fiction), maybe they’re just better at adjusting their routine according to the changes. 

Physiologically, we are adaptable, but mentally is a challenge since changes can be stressful. I’ve heard pieces of advice to start slow, or have a reward for progress. In an environment like a school, routine & surprises are on a tightrope – no one has the same level of balance nor the same level of skill or confidence. As a result, some are excelling, others are good, and many are struggling.

To say that it’ll be easy is a big lie – I mean, it’s perfect balance on a wire, not easy. However, to say that it’s impossibly hard, absolutely not. Society tells us to get an education that will lead us to a high paying job, but there are some people who find a way to do otherwise. Just as there are many ways to do tightrope, there are many ways to succeed in life. Find that method, whether or not it’s mainstream, and try it out. If anything, it’ll be a brand new path that is yours alone.. And maybe it’ll be a thicker wire than those on the mainstream.

Helping for the sake of others or for me?

Ever help out someone? Ever hold a door for a stranger? Ever help out a sibling on their homework? Ever volunteer for an event? Ever explain a concept to a classmate so they can better understand it?

When we’re doing something for someone else, are we really helping them, or are we helping ourselves? I’ve heard stories of people doing something for someone else in the hopes of it acting as an owed favour to be used later in the future, or some people would give others a hand simply because they were told to do so (I see it a lot among kids). Some people do it as a means to boost their self-confidence or their self-courage (among many others), others do it as a chance to try something new or something completely unrelated to their field just because it’s a temporary task.

In Concordia University, we have something called Note-Takers for the Access Center for Student with Disabilities. As the title applies, students like myself would take notes as usual, but the difference is that we would upload them into the Centre for other student to use.

I’ve been offered the task several times, and was never sure about doing because I thought it would be time-consuming given that I might end up re-writing my notes to make them legible and easily understood.  As a volunteer, there’s no pay, but there is a certain recognition that would accompany doing such a job over the course of the semester(s).

But then I hesitate – by taking notes for other people, who would I really be helping? Technically, yes I would be helping them in better understanding the lecture, but I’m also helping myself by going over my notes and review what it is that I had written when in class (My writing in class isn’t the cleanest, and the short-hard doesn’t help). At the same time, there’s an innate fear that I wouldn’t be able to keep up with all of the work that come along with being a note-taker – maybe the students of a particular would email me questions that I wouldn’t be able to answer. However, maybe by doing this, I would be able to figure out a way to efficiently take notes and that I would be able to be more confident in myself in new ways.

Can I write an accurate conclusion? Maybe not, but I can say that by helping others, I would also be helping myself. Whether the act of helping is as a means to have a favour to use later, or simply as a means to feel better, the act of helping can be beneficial for both parties. While it might seem that maybe one would benefit more than the other, it really depends on who’s telling the story.

Running, never stopping

Ever try to create a new habit? Ever have a series of success? Ever find that the new habit fades away, to the point of which it’s gone?

Somehow, it feels as though I haven’t written anything for the entire semester (even though it’s only been a month and a half), and I actually became stressed on not writing anything.

Finals just finished for me this semester, and next semester starts as early as January 6th (I think), and so, I have a lot of… residual stress? The finals are always a stressful time, but I never took the time, during the second half of the semester, to calm down or to relieve some of that stress.

As a result, it accumulates. Nail-biting, lip biting, irregular sleep patterns, high levels of alertness, massive bad cold (again) – classical stress symptoms from Psych Class. Moreover, the number of distractions that my imagination made? It was on overdrive – I made a story of Virtual Reality crossing Fictional Doctor Who and Reality, I made a story of Alice in Wonderland and Criminal Minds – the list goes on (none are completed as they were forgotten over time).

So, what to do after the finals? Take a breather. I’m the kind of person who calms doing simple things, so I got myself an art-therapy book (wish list – DOCTOR WHO colouring book) and started turning scrap paper into little boxes to be used later for stuff (very useful). I also got a new camera and took the liberty of discovering the Montreal-equivalent of Diagon Alley (Keeping my word to two folks I met, I’ll leave it to you to find out where it is)DSCN2934.jpg

Oh, and of course, get back to blogging! As I mentioned before, I tend to calm myself doing simple tasks and writing these posts actually do calm me a bit (or distract me). I hope to continue it into the 2016 and find new ways to manage this accumulation of stress (suggestions? Comment!)

The Unusual Weather & Influence of Media

Ever watch a movie where the setting consists almost entirely of rainy environments? Ever see such a movie where bad things happen? 

  There’s something about a rainy morning in autumn that gives me a bad feeling. Maybe it’s because I watch too many shows that take place on or around Halloween. 
I’m usually the kind to feel calmer when watching rain, but hearing almost nothing and seeing almost no one… Flags are raised in my mind. 

Times like this make me think about the influences that the media has on the audience. With so many movies taking place around Halloween and the autumn season, many might have grown somewhat cautious when it becomes rainy, cold and/or approaches October 31st. 

Any other time and I would like the change in scenery, but I can’t help but think of all the bad things that happened in movies…

But they’re movies. Sure TV shows have Halloween episodes as well, but they’re all stories that someone wrote. There’s no way that any of them will come true… Right? 

 

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