Monthly Archives: April 2014

The Internet: Uglifyed

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“I think slow internet is really ugly.”

Wow. And to think I started out so well. Welcome to the 21st Century, where, above all, internet connection is valued. Great.

I think the fact that we feel entitled to a good, fast internet comes from being spoon fed instant gratification from birth. I know that when I am at home trying to do my blog posts and my computer drops the internet, I become quite frustrated. But it’s homework. I’m just trying to be a good student! All of my grades can be found online. All of my assignments are posted online. I get entertainment, knowledge, and progress from the internet. This is all very new. But is it all very good? The internet has opened the door to countless opportunities, and with great power comes great responsibility. Are we ready for it?

My generation, my people, are going to have to answer this question and many more other, harder to answer ones, and that’s where the beauty is. For every person I meet that makes me cringe when I think about the future, I meet three that make me say ‘bring it on’. For every person posting pictures of themselves in bikini’s on Instagram, there’s two others posting relevant content that’s changing the world. We’ll be ok. Even if it doesn’t seem like we will. As far as the internet, we’re getting there. Yeah, we’re still fed instant gratification, but we’re also starting to use our power for good rather than ‘meh’.

Don’t forget the glitter- iamtheseventies.

10 Reasons to Love Batman. (Incase you were on the fence)

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So I, being only biologically human, am growing impatient with always writing about ugly things. I know the whole purpose is to show you dear readers that these things are actually beautiful, but today I’m going to show you something beautiful. (Okay, maybe beautiful is a stretch, but can we all just agree that Batman is pretty rad?)

Here are 10 legitimate reasons to love Batman.

10) Franchise evolved positively

From Robin having (unfortunately) skin colored tights and the confusing mask Adam West sported to the menacing look and behavior that we associate with Christian Bale’s Batman , I’d say we’ve come a long way. Other improvements include the evolution of the Bat-mobile as well as the Bat-suit. Speaking of which…

"It's not who I am underneath, but what I do that defines me." http://img3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120113035139/batman/images/6/6b/DK-0113.jpg

“It’s not who I am underneath, but what I do that defines me.”
http://img3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120113035139/batman/images/6/6b/DK-0113.jpg

9) The nipples on the Bat-suit.

Some try to ignore it, some try to embrace it, but no one can deny it.

8) Best Villans

Batman has encountered some of the most prime villains ever seen on the silver screen or the colored pages of a comic book.  My favorites include (but are not limited to) Bane, Dr. Hurt, The Riddler, The General, and (of course) The Joker.

7) Realistically Futuristic

No matter when you are experiencing Batman, the story always takes place a couple years in the future. We can’t accept that this COULD be happening now, but, I mean, it sort of is. Biology altering chemicals, mutated animals, corruption, they’re all here, happening now. The best and worst part of Batman is how plausible it is. No one can ever imagine getting saved by an alien from Krypton, but a billionaire philanthropist turned dark knight? Plausible.

6) Works alone, but acknowledges when he needs outside help.

When we think of people that we know that come off as strong, intimidating, or fearless, we think of detachment, brawn, and isolation. While Batman is certainly brawny (you can say that again), he isn’t as detached or isolated as he’d like to be. He tries to accept the death of his friends and family, but he can’t. He is only human, after all. Remember when I said that even Batman cries? Well he does. And he’s friggin’ Batman. But not really. He’s actually Bruce Wayne. (Spoiler alert). But in his adventures and close calls, he’s always got Robin and Gordon looking out for him. And Alfred. So even Batman isn’t afraid to swallow his pride and ask for help. (Sometimes)

5) The Bat-mobile

Need I say anymore? I know I mentioned it earlier as having evolved positively with the franchise, which it certainly has, but it was always pretty awesome.

4) Bruce Wayne

A billionaire orphan who spends his money buying hotels and his time as Gotham’s worst vigilante. Can it get better than that?

3) He’s an underdog

Yeah, against the average crook he’s got some advantages, but against his more worthy opponents, he’s usually a few steps behind. Whether it’s Bane’s sheer strength or Ivy’s vine-strangling-power or Mister Freeze’s ice-cold personality, most of his enemies have advantages. Or they’re, you know, crocodiles. That happened.

2) His cape actually has a purpose.

Batman’s cape has been engineered to help him fly, you know, like a bat. I think this is important to note since other superheroes like Superman and Thor have unnecessary capes.  They can both fly on there own, so what’s with the cape? Which brings me to number 1.

1) Batman doesn’t actually have any superpowers.

This makes him more accessible to us other humans. We can relate to him. We can hope (desperately) for him to be real. Sure, we could say the same thing about Spiderman, but then we’d have to wait for a spider with mutating venom to be discovered.

So there’s 10 legitimate reasons to love Batman, incase you were on the fence. He’s pretty spectacular.

Bruce, don’t forget the glitter. -iamtheseventies.

PS

There are several places called Gotham, and while there is no Gotham City, there is a place in Wisconsin called Gotham and they have a Bat Cave restaurant. Bucket List? Check.

 

 

Crying Makes You Weak. Or That’s What I’ve Been Told.

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“Stop crying. It makes you weak. It’s hideous.”

I don’t know if he was talking about the crying or weakness that was hideous. As I write (type?) this, I’m drying my eyes myself, and I can assure you it’s  not the prettiest thing I’ve ever seen. I had a really bad day that included (but was not limited to) getting bird shit splattered all over my phone and backpack, having a helmet fall off my locker and hit me on the head, feeling an impending sense of doom due to upcoming finals and exams, and taking BS from a couple of my teachers. (No, not you Donnie 🙂 ) There’s thirty two days of school left. Whether or not I survive is a coin toss, really, at this point. And so, here I am, drying my eyes, listening to Matt Nathanson between my parent’s arguments over URLs and the yapping of that cursed dog that lives somewhere nearby.

To get to the bottom of this can of worms, we need to start at the top: why do we even cry? I’m no expert, but I think I’ve got this one figured out, actually. I think we cry mostly because we are frustrated. That makes the most sense to me. I’m sure we cry for a variety of reasons, but frustration seems like a nice umbrella to shelter them from the water works. You know, crying is really just releasing sodium, hydrogen, and oxygen through tear ducts. So what’s the big fuss?

Crying has really always been seen as a weakness, and we all know weaknesses are ugly. Hideous, sorry, hideous. Especially with men. Masculinity has always been seen as being removed, fearless, and physically and mentally strong. You’d never see Hercules shed a tear or King Arthur bat an eye in the face of danger. But women, on the other hand, are always screwing things up, getting into trouble and are just dying for someone to come save them. Have you noticed that? There’s really only one major super heroin, and that’s Wonder Woman. How come she has to wear skimpy leotards and push her breasts into the line of fire while all the other guys get capes and tights? (Yes, there’s other female super heroes, but they’re all either side kicks or were thrown in for some estrogen.) But sexism and women in the media is a whole separate can of worms that I just can’t do right now. Speaking of superheroes and tear ducts, even Batman’s cried a couple times. But more of why Batman is the best later. (like, tomorrow)

Sometimes I feel like we as a society are becoming too sensitive. We try too hard to please the offended minority while the majority suffers because of it. Take crying. Crying shows sensitivity, emotion. If a woman cries, it’s really not that big of a deal. If a man cries, everyone holds their breath. When a woman cries, we dismiss it as hormonal (which isn’t always wrong) and silly. Here, have a tissue, sweet heart. When a man cries, we see him as a sensitive young boy who’ll grow out of it. Pull it together, man! But this is ridiculous! We can’t assume that this will always be the case. We cry for hundreds of reasons, so why can’t we just accept it as emotion and move on? Men should be allowed to cry and not have his pride hurt! Sure, there are some cases of public sobbing that could potentially embarrass anyone, but crying in general shouldn’t be out lawed. I don’t know why people are so opposed to crying. It’s really not that big of a deal. You shed a few tears, listen to a few sad songs, then pick yourself up. It’s really nothing to be ashamed of. Final thoughts: crying shouldn’t be seen as weakness, but a process of gaining strength. When you build muscle, you work out and tear the tissue. Then you rest and it grows back stronger. Maybe if we stop making a big deal about using our tear ducts, then we could stop this whole crying = sensitivity = stereotype thing. Whatever. Maybe if we could stop making a big deal about women making an honest living then they could actually make an honest living without the support of a man. Whatever.

Don’t forget the glitter- iamtheseventies.

 

The Biggest Disappointment of All

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This whole week has been about getting let down and things not turning out as we had hoped. Disappointments and discouragement often go hand in hand. But just because something doesn’t go right one time doesn’t mean it will every time. Say you play baseball (or softball, if you’re cool). If you strike out once, it doesn’t mean you’re going to strike out every single time for the rest of your life. I mean you could if you really tried, but if you go up every time visualizing getting a hit, you will have a much better chance of getting a hit. (Note: I’m basically quoting my coach verbatim here, so this isn’t exactly my advise to give. I’m just passing it on.)

The only reason we ever get let down is because we have expectations. We have standards. We expect things from ourselves and from other people. Sometimes those expectations are too extreme to be realized, and sometimes they’re uncalled for. Who am I to say where Christian Bale should have gotten married? Why is it my business if Johnny Depp and Winona Ryder broke up? Why do we set expectations in the first place? Why should we expect life to hand us anything on a silver platter? What does life owe us? What did we do to deserve such high priority from a universe that has bigger problems to worry about? Sure, sometimes expectations are helpful. Imagine going to school and not knowing what to expect. Imagine going home and not knowing what to expect. Imagine waking up and not knowing what to expect. Expectations help us get through the day, but we need to draw the line somewhere. I personally expect to get every last drop of life out of my conscious time on this rock. But I know that nothing is ever going to fall into my lap. I’m an eternal underdog. I’m not the queen, but I’m in the club. The cards just don’t fall our way, fellas. We gotta work for what we get. Newsies on a mission. But  constant, reliable, things are good for the soul. Just like glam rock.

Don’t forget the glitter- iamtheseventies.

You’ll Never Look at Maverick the Same

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Day three of “Four days of Disappoint”, and we enter the realm of Cruisedom. Tom Cruise, one of the many actors we love to hate. On screen, he has created some of our favorite characters. Off screen, we love to see him as an uncontrollable, strange, and the leader of a cult. But I was willing to ignore these acclaimed attributes in order to preserve characters like Joel Goodsen, Nathan Algren, and even Ethan Hunt. But there’s only so much I can take.

I was hanging out with my younger brother when he burst out laughing and showed me his phone. On it was a picture of Tom Cruise. I was certain it was photo-shopped. But then I started seeing it in every…single…picture. At that point, he was gone. There was nothing I could do.

We all have that friend with a goofy laugh, but does it ever become annoying, even frightening? Or will we always love them for it. We “regular” people are allowed to make silly faces, have stupid laughs, and be unphotogenic. So why do the rules change for celebrities? Us civilians are allowed to do outlandish things for love, but as soon as Tom Cruise makes a fool of himself on live TV, he’s an embarrassment. Some people say that it was immature, inappropriate, or even uncalled for. But who are we to judge? One thing I’ve learned in my short, misplaced life is that no matter what, people are going to judge other people. It’s just a thing. The best thing to do is laugh at our mistakes and take pride in our accomplishments. And never be afraid to smile. Even if you do have a tooth in the exact center of your mouth.

Don’t forget the glitter- iamtheseventies.

 

Why It Shouldn’t Matter That Christian Bale Was Married By Elvis (but it does)

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I recently learned that Christian Bale and then girlfriend Sibi Blazic eloped in 200o and were married in none other than Las Vegas, Nevada by none other than Elvis Presley himself. (ok it was impersonator, but that’s almost worse.) The two have been happily married for 14 years, have one child, and are expecting their second. So if they’re so happy, why am I still hung upon this?!

Still in love

Still in love Source

 

I don’t know why, but I felt let down by this knowledge. I’d always imagined the Bales having a nice small wedding, very modest and humble, somewhere remote but nice. Maybe Brazil. Not running away to Vegas and getting married by an ELVIS IMPERSONATOR. It just seems so…. trashy? Lame? Un-romantic? It feels like something Katy Perry would do. Not Cristian flippin’ Bale. It felt less than perfect. But then I’d stop and think to myself: why do I even care?

Veags with a happy ending Source

Vegas with a happy ending
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The truth is it matter because he matters. I don’t actually know that much about Christian Bale. I know some random facts, like that he was married in Vegas, but I don’t know what kind of person he is. I don’t know if he’s nice, or naïve.  I don’t know if he’s considerate or condescending. And, in truth, I don’t really want to know. The reason he means so much to me is because some (SOME) of his characters mean so much to me. He’s been n movies that have completely reformed my brain. Some of the movies he’s been in mean more to me than he could possibly know. So my selfish, entitled teenage heart was broken when I realized that Christian Bale didn’t have the wedding my twisted mind dreamt up.

Newly Weds Source

Newly Weds
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But he’s been married to the same woman for 14 years, and they’re expecting their second child, so I mean, I guess he’s happy. And does it really matter if he got married in Vegas? No. If that’s what he wanted then that’s what he should do. We love to criticize and judge other people’s actions, but what would we have done in their shoes? A whirlwind marriage does have a sort or allure. And c’mon, Elvis? That’s not so bad. It’s better than some cranky priest. Besides, Christian Bale makes a lot of movies. He’s never shied away from something that was too tough or too challenging. I respect him. I adore his films. I don’t know where I would be without Jack “Cowboy” Kelly. So I should respect his choices. I know that in my life, I’ll make some choices that my mom will say “Don’t you ever,” to, and I know that I wouldn’t want people who look up to me saying “What the hell, man?” I’d want them to either say “Right on sister!” or get out of the way. There’s enough anger and disappointment in this world to add any more to.

Don’t forget the glitter- iamtheseventies.

Four Days Of Disappointment (sorry)

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“Disappointment is really ugly. It feels ugly.”

Have you ever heard something that you wish you could unhear? Did your favorite celebrity ever let you down? Have you ever fallen in love with a character, only to learn something hideous about the actor that played them? Has someone ever said the wrong thing? This week, in a four part series, we’re going to discuss the ugly let downs of life. Today, we’ll cry over the fact that Johnny Depp and Winona Ryder broke up.

The 90’s were a time of bad color schemes, rocking TV shows, and all the stoners from the 70’s were either dead or sober, (for the most part). It was also the only period of time to behold one of the most adored couples of this life: Johnny and Winona. They met at the premire of Great Balls of Fire! in which Ryder starred. It was June, of ’89. By ’93, they had been engaged for three years, had stolen our hearts (as well as each other’s) and had broken up. Hollywood’s loveliest couple was off. But back to the beginning. They both starred in Tim Burton’s 1990 drama Edward Scissorhands, which I pray you’ve seen. The romance was budding both on and off screen. Below are some pics from Edward Scissorhands and the beginning of a true love.

 

In 1990, he popped the question. The bombshell couple was engaged for three years before the split. Winona as the one to break it off. She was 10 years younger than Depp, and her parents (along with others) were putting stress on her about being too young to get married at just 18. But it’s undeniable: these were the only two people on this earth beautiful and strange enough for each other. So why am I telling you this?

Often, when we see celebrity romances, we feel that it is our personal quest to find out every single detail and give our very strong opinion whenever we get the chance. Whole magazine companies dedicate themselves to following celebreties and their lives and loves. We call them “paparazzi”. I try to open your minds, but what about your eyes? Sometimes my posts can get to be arbitrary, symbolic, or metaphorical. But this is real. This is a tangible thing I can say and you can envision. And our infatuation with celebrities’ lives is pretty ugly. So why do we invade our heroes privacy? We idolize these people. We care about them. We want to be a part of them. That’s not so bad, right? We’re all just looking for lean on, and celebrities are perfect for that. We love to hate Kim Kardashian. Just as much as we love to love Ellen DeGeneres. It’s human nature to want to relate. Moral of the story: stay out of their way, give them their privacy, they deserve it just as much as you do. But having your heart broken by the end of Bad Boy and Queen Danger is just human nature. It’s a tough one. Stay tuned for more views on celebrities and why they mean so much to us.

Don’t forget the glitter- iamtheseventies.

 

The Curse of Brace-Face

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“Braces are ugly, painful, and horrible.”

Yup. I’ve been there. But now my teeth are all straight and it was totally worth it! Right?

Braces make eating even the mushiest bananas hard. So why do we put ourselves through this socially acceptable form of torture? And how socially acceptable is it really? No, you won’t get dragged though the streets for having braces. No you won’t get sprayed with fire hoses. No you won’t be exiled from your town. CALM DOWN! But you do get dragged down through the Jr. High School hierarchy until you sit dead last in the line of waiting-to-be-a-High-Schooler.  You will get sprayed in the face on a monthly basis by your orthodontist and his/her/creature from the black lagoon’s water-sprayer-thingy that they shoot you in the mouth with then in your eye “on accident”. And yes, you will be exiled from any and all forms of weekend fun.

Ok, so maybe that was a little dramatic, but it’s not wrong. With rubber bands criss-crossing your mouth, making conversation (or any speech) a real challenge; with the sleepless nights due to the aching and ever present pain coming from your teeth being rearranged; and with the insides of your mouth getting cut, giving you eerily Joker-esque scars on the inside of your mouth, braces aren’t far from hell. Or as close as any eighth grader can get to the fiery gates. So this begs the question: why? What was I thinking?!

Well, there’s the practical answer: my teeth weren’t growing in straight and having crooked teeth causes problems with digestion and stuff. But other than that… to make them look nice? Are these the kind of things we as a society are doing today to fit the ever changing norm of what is and what is not “beautiful”? My mom always said it was making my teeth beautiful. Is that what other moms say to their kids whose arms and legs are thinner than sticks? It’s making them beautiful? Is that what other moms say to their kids when they ask why their mom is going in to surgery to put plastic in her face? It’s making mommy beautiful? I sure hope not. I hope moms are saying “It’s making you beautiful” when their kids are trying out for their school play because they love theatre. Or when their teenager asks why they have to do gardening. Or best of all- when kids are asking if they should challenge society. Yes. Because it’s making you beautiful. It’s shaping your character. I guarantee you that the people who will love you for the rest of your life are the ones who think you have a beautiful soul and mind. Not teeth. I promise.

So even though your teeth might get you noticed (and maybe not always in a good way), it’s the people who stick around because of your personality that will tell the embarrassing stories of your horrible brace-face at your wedding. Their the ones you’re going to miss the most when you’re off at college or whatever. Those are the people that you’re going to love and that are going to love you for the rest of your life. So let’s see…. Braces are beautiful because society doesn’t think that they are. They are the beautiful disasters we all go through that help us grow.

Don’t forget the glitter- iamtheseventies.