Thursday, September 30, 2010

Love Languages Series Introduction

The idea behind this series is to talk about how I respond to the "Five Love Languages" as spelled out by Gary Chapman. They are as follows:
1. Physical Touch
2. Words of Affirmation
3. Quality Time
4. Acts of Service
5. Gifts

This stems from my intention to write a blog post about the safe ways to show affection in college, which then changed to thinking about the love languages. It may take me a while to ever finish this series as there is perpetual homework or studying to do, but I decided to try, hoping it will help give me some blogging discipline and force me to practice writing here.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Nerds v. Geeks

I've been discussing what defines someone as a nerd. I'm a girl in Computer Science, I study all the time, read like crazy, know random facts that normal people don't know, and wear glasses. For some people, that makes me automatically a nerd. For others, to be a nerd, you have to be into video games. For others, it's different.

So, I figured that maybe I wasn't a nerd. Maybe they were right. So I started looking into the word geek. But  I learned that "geek" is also defined differently. For example, the Geek Squad from Best Buy is considered to be a sort of "elite" retail job. There are also "Harry Potter geeks" "Pokemon geeks" and other type specific geeks who are not necessarily into math or computers or science.

So, where does that leave me? The nerds don't want me - I'm not techy enough for them. But the geeks don't want me either-I'm too broad a category for them, not being obsessive over something specific.

How do you define "geek" and/or "nerd"? (Please don't be derogatory. That's rude.)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Raoul v. the Phantom

I have gone on a kick of listening to musicals while I work on my homework. Without it, it's far to quite in my dorm while I study. So, I've been listen to 1776 and The Phantom of the Opera via YouTube.

If you don't know the story of The Phantom of the Opera, here's a synopsis from Wikipedia (of the musical):
and of the book:
(They are slightly different).

I was surprised by the way people responded to the Phantom. The majority of the YouTube population was pitted against Raoul, Christine's childhood sweetheart, as her lifelong companion, and in favor of the Phantom.

I understand what people say about Raoul (from the musical) being a selfish, pampered man who has no respect for Christine's career. However, people often overlook the fact that he was behaving the way society dictated in asking Christine to give up her singing when she married him, as well as the fact that Christine happily agreed.

I also understand why people pity the Phantom. The musical is written in such a way as to make you see him as a sad boy who was never loved and denied his musical talents because of his face. However, people don't consider how scary he really is. This is a man who has lived underground for many years, who has secret passageways into a young girl's dressing room, hangs stagehands to make points, and is generally insane. You cannot justify the fact that he is crazy and kidnapped Christine. I don't care how much she appears to love him at the end of the musical. A) It's not really love, just her compassion and B)he's a total creeper!

I'm not saying Raoul is the right choice either. However, in the novel, he seems to truly love her and suffers quite a lot to be with her. According to the novel, they elope and the Phantom dies. I highly suggest that fans of the musical read the novel - it's got more of a horror aspect, but is also extremely interesting and provides some background to the characters (like, the Phantom's first name).

On the second musical I've been listening too, 1776, I want to encourage everyone to see it - it is silly, yes, but is quite fun and very true to John and Abigail Adams' real relationship (which was far better than either of the relationships Christine Daae had!). If you do watch it, read this note on historical accuracy, just so you don't fail your APUSH exam! (AP US History)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Future Archaeology

Like so many of my posts, this started as an idea for a Facebook status.
I had been looking through my facebook history for a status that I'd posted a week or so ago. In the process, I discovered pictures I'd been tagged in, videos I'd linked too, conversations I'd had, and status postings that I had forgotten I had written. Facebook is such a day by day (for some hour by hour) event. We forget what we posted on Facebook the same way we forget what we had for dinner yesterday.

But, unlike our dinner, our Facebook history never goes away.

I think that in the future, archaeologists will have to be computer scientists who dig through years worth of old facebook posts and pictures to discover the lives of people of the past.

Won't that be interesting? Imagine what they'll think, reading your comments on people's various walls, your inside jokes that you post via facebook, wondering what on earth a "poke" is, contemplating the different significances of "liking" someones status and generally trying to understand the part of our culture that is Facebook.

I wonder if they'll see the millions of groups protesting the changes Facebook made over the years. I wonder if they'll be able to dig deep enough to find old Facebook somewhere. How many of you remember the days before Facebook? your first status? your first wall post? the names of ALL your facebook friends?

The things we do on the internet we do without thinking. I think it would be fun to see people of the future trying to figure it out. It even goes beyond facebook to your email inbox, your blog, your class websites, EVERYTHING.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Two Men - Real or Fiction?

Sunday Night I was all alone in my dorm room and had done most of my homework. So I watched the Young Victoria and then I was enjoying netflix so much I watched Julie and Julia.

I recommend watching both of those movies, they are fun. But I found something really interesting while watching them. In each of the movies there was the female protagonist (Victoria and Julia) and each one had a husband (Albert and Paul). In both movies, the wife was generally more important and more successful than her husband. But, in spite of that, the husband is clearly the 'head' of the marriage because the wife looks up to him.

Example: Albert was far inferior to Victoria. He would never be a majesty, while she was one. However, he found ways to be useful in the palace, to protect her and, in one scene, chooses not to argue with her but instead leave the room. He wanted to be her hero instead of Lord Melbourne - and in the end, he was.
Example 2: At the beginning, Paul has a good job, but at the end of the movie he's lost it because of government problems. Julia's cookbook is far more successful than his job, but he still keeps her going and supports her through it all. He lets her go crazy with her book and helps her when it doesn't succeed.

Disclaimer: I realize that these were movies and not the real men. But I'd like to hope the movie men were based on the real men. And, real or fiction, both those husbands exhibited greatness, I think. They were the head, yes, but supporting, gracious heads who respected their wives and were in turn respected and loved. I think that's what people mean when they say a man should be the head of a marriage, and with that I wholeheartedly agree. What do you think?