Flashbacks

January 2, 2011 § Leave a comment

When I was in Hawaii with the basketball team over break, we often had short periods of 15 minutes or so where we had to wait for everyone to get ready and take showers ect. During this time, what better was there to do besides watch TV, Spongebob Squarepants in particular. Somewhat strangely, while watching Spongebob, it did not seem as if our sense of humor had matured at all as we laughed constantly at the pointless jokes made by the sea creatures of Bikini Bottom. The episodes were certainly still as funny as they had been seven years ago and although the new episodes were certainly not as good as the old ones, whenever the old ones came on we would be flooded by memories of the good old days and all of our favorite episodes. I mean, who could ever forget the Band Geeks episode or the episode with the colorful Krabby Patties? We were even able to quote many of the lines made in the episodes, even though we hadn’t seen them in years. Weird how we can remember little things like these but have trouble memorizing things such as facts about Reconstruction in America even though we spend 100 times the amount of time studying Reconstruction as we do hearing that single line. Overall, reliving this one childhood experience was refreshing. Refreshing to sit back, relax and just enjoy a TV show that isn’t over complicated or filled with drama or romance, but also refreshing to know that childish humor still remained in all of us.

Fake or Real?

December 5, 2010 § 3 Comments

I really can’t remember the last time we had a real Christmas tree inside of my house. According to my parents the last time we got a real one was when I was 2 so I’ve never had that experience of going into a forest/farm (where do you even get Christmas trees?) and chopping one down and bringing it home. Maybe it’s because Christmas isn’t a huge deal in my family. Sure it’s fun to see all the lights and it’s definitely great to have a few weeks off from school, but the actual Christmas day isn’t all that spectacular in my household since it’s basically only me, as an only child, sitting around with my parents around our fake tree. But then again, when I step into someone’s home with a real Christmas tree, it’s different. First the smell hits you, then you reach out to touch the tree and the realness of it is something that just can’t be captured in a tree made out of plastic. So I’ve always wondered if getting a real tree would change Christmas at my house, maybe it would make it more real. Except the saddest thing about Christmas is driving around a week later and seeing all the dying trees lying out on peoples driveways, waiting to be picked up by the garbagemen and sentenced to their final resting place and I don’t know if I could deal with giving it away that easily!

Dancing and Singing Penguins?

December 5, 2010 § 1 Comment

As we were watching March of the Penguins, someone whispered something to me about the movie Happy Feet and how cute it was so I decided to look up the trailer and try and remember this movie which I had seen so many years ago. After getting over the cuteness of the baby, animated penguins, the first thing I wondered was, why dancing and singing? From what I saw in March of the Penguins, penguins are somewhat clumsy and their legs don’t look long enough to do anything except waddle. Maybe that was just the irony of it. That the filmmakers decided to personify the penguins by giving them a quality that they would never actually have in the real world.

But then what about the singing? From the trailer it seemed like every penguin could sing well and they all bursted out in song at random moments like they were characters on Glee. Yet in the movie, penguins made the oddest screeching sound that kind of shocked me when I first heard it. Unlike most sounds that other species of birds make, the penguin noise didn’t sound very musical at all.

I guess that’s all the fun of having an animated movie though. Although it may not portray penguins in a completely accurate way, it wasn’t meant to be an educational video anyways so what’s the big problem with having a little fun with it? Probably nothing.

National Dog Show

November 26, 2010 § 1 Comment

It’s a tradition every Thanksgiving that I go over to my family friends’ house and we watch the National Dog Show on NBC before settling down to eat. I honestly have no idea how they judge these competitions and my friend and I usually just spend our time making fun of the ridiculous haircuts that they put on the poodles. So what satisfaction do humans take out of simply watching animals walk around? Is it really that fascinating to see adorable collies parade around an arena or to spend your life devoted to documenting and spending time with wild grizzly bears? Timothy Treadwell did all that he did for love, because he simply loved bears and wanted to know everything about them and protect them. But then people don’t typically watch the documentary on his adventures because they want to know more about bears, it’s because they want to know more about Treadwell and his death. So if the majority of people aren’t naturally inclined to watch the footage that Treadwell spent a great deal of his life filming, then why does the National Dog Show attract almost 20 million viewers if a lot of us could simply look across the room and see a dog that doesn’t seem all the different from the one on tv? Maybe it’s the cute factor. I mean, it was the cute scenes in the Treadwell documentary, such as the baby foxes, that made people perk up and those were a lot of the parts that people remembered and talked about afterwards. But then again, half the dogs in the show aren’t all that cute, especially the ones that have been shaved on numerous parts of their body. Or maybe it’s because they are so unknown to us. The fascinating thing about Treadwell’s footage is that it showed a side of grizzlies in nature that people had never seen before. But in the dog show, the humans control the dog’s every move and its appearance so its not like the dogs are acting in some strange way that we don’t know about. I don’t even know why I watch it but it is oddly entertaining and a good distraction from the pain of waiting for our Thanksgiving meal. 

True Love?

November 24, 2010 § 1 Comment

This idea that our pets just love us because we give them the things they need to survive has been bugging me ever since we discussed it in class. Personally, my cat means the world to me. I’m almost 100% sure that I’ll miss her more than I will miss my family when I go off to college so the idea of her not truly loving me back seems like such a horrible idea.

Sure, I’ll admit it does seem like she likes me more when I give her part of the chicken I’m eating for dinner or when it’s particularly cold at night and she wants to crawl under my blankets next to me at night for warmth. But are these really the only reasons she loves me? We try to compare human/human love to animal/human love but it’s not really something that is comparable because honestly, there’s not much else a cat can do besides eat and sleep. And is the fact that they might only love us because we provide things that make them happy really that different from why humans love each other? We love other people because they make us happy: they brighten our day up when we are sad, they take us out to dinner, they make us laugh, they’re simply there for us and isn’t that somewhat similar to what we do for our animals by providing food and shelter that makes them happy as well?

 

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Requited Love

November 13, 2010 § Leave a comment

Watching Grizzly Man in class, I didn’t really get the impression that the bears wanted Timothy Treadwell around them. In numerous scenes, we see the bears creeping up on Tim and walking away angrily as he shoos them off. In fact, the movie somewhat makes it seem like the only creature who really appreciates Tim’s presence in the forest are the foxes he befriends and runs around playfully with. At least that’s what I thought until I read Ned Zeman’s article in Vanity Fair called The Man Who Loved Grizzlies. Hidden among Zeman’s explanations of Tim’s girlfriends and the disturbing scene of Tim’s death is the paragraph that  surprised me the most in this article. This paragraph helped me understand why Tim would keep isolating himself year after year and putting himself in danger in order to be closer to bears. It starts off talking about a bear named Booble who Tim was close with and describes their relationship:

“Before Booble went off to gather food—the only time a mother will leave cubs—she nudged her little moppets toward Treadwell. In fact, several mothers availed themselves of the new day-care service, parking the kids at Treadwell’s feet, heading off to run errands, then returning.”

I’d imagine that a mother bear would need a huge degree of trust in a human in order to leave her cubs with him which would not be something that is easily gained. So in that aspect, I commend Tim for his connection with bears since it is clear that this is not a feigned relationship but one that means a lot to both sides.

Boundaries

October 27, 2010 § 2 Comments

Who doesn’t want to be able to spontaneously take off and drive across the country and experience everything it has to offer whenever you felt like it? What if we were allowed to do whatever our hearts desired? If we could speak our mind about absolutely anything we wanted to whoever we wanted? This would be a world without boundaries.

Personally, this sounds like the best thing in the world to me. As high school students, we have boundaries wherever we look due to our age. As we age, the boundaries get less and less applicable to our lives as we become teenagers, get our licenses, become legal adults, can legally drink, the list goes on and on. Although these boundaries are understandable since chaos would probably ensue if five year olds were operating vehicles on the daily, but I also believe these boundaries restrict our ability to learn and gain experiences as individuals, thus restricting our ability to reach our full potential. Because we can’t do whatever we want, a lot of the time it is hard to be satisfied with what you get done when you see other people, with looser boundaries, getting things done that you are not able to.

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