Filed Under (Uncategorized) by Emily on 30-10-2011


The man sitting at the computer has claw-like fingers (they remind me of Roald Dahl’s “The Witches”) filled with dirt and grime. His skin looks like it has been greased with Pam cooking spray ten times over. His eyes are not friendly; they are angry and stalker-ish.

Not someone I would want looking at my Facebook profile.

I am a private person, for the most part. I share more with people “in person” rather than online. It is easier to be aware of a person’s actions when they are physically in your presence than if they are hiding behind a computer screen. I don’t go to Facebook as often as I used to. It became boring after a while, and I was sick of people sending me Farmville and Cityville requests. I was also getting upset about Facebook constantly changing. It seemed like once I had just gotten used to the changes, they would make something else “better”. I’m glad to say that I have not let Facebook become my life.

The idea that “privacy is dead” scares me. I don’t want creepy people knowing my address, phone number, etc. So that’s why you will not find it on my Facebook page. I have no drunk Facebook pictures either, because I am a nerd and I don’t party. I know a lot of people who have put stupid pictures of themselves on Facebook when they are drunk or high. I even found someone who took a picture of a huge bag of pot. In the eyes of employers, such behavior is foolish and irresponsible. I know people who have put their cell phone numbers and addresses on Facebook. Why?

I think this story is timely, because Halloween is this Monday, and this story reminds us to think before we post.

For more information about internet safety visit http://wiredsafety.org/

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by Emily on 15-10-2011


When I was a little girl, I had Barbies. I didn’t play with them very much, except to change their clothes once in a while. Then I left the Barbie’s hairbrush and shoes on the floor and my mom kept accidentally stepping on them. But I never took Barbie too seriously, and I knew she was not a “real” person.

The only time I was “fat” was when I was a baby. I had a little bit of fuzz on my head, like a baby duckling. My cheeks and arms were chubby. Other than that, I have always been thin as a rail. A female classmate in middle school wrote in my 8th grade yearbook, “You need to eat more.” and then signed her name. When I was in high school, some girls in the P.E. locker room believed that I had had an eating disorder. Eventually, I lied and said that I had, just so they would leave me alone. Sometimes in the hallway, I would walk past cliques of girls and they walked up to me and said, “You’re so skinny! OMG, you need to eat more!”  In my head I said, “Really? I didn’t notice! I couldn’t tell!” (sarcasm). Instead, I just stared at them in disbelief. Why did they say that? Were they concerned about me? Did it ever occur to them that maybe I have a metabolism through the roof and I never gain weight, and I have had body image issues because my dad always bugged me about eating enough vegetables and not eating a lot of sweets? Did they ever think that I might have feelings and that they were being insensitive bitches?

I had surgery when I was sixteen. It was for my left eye. After going to an eye appointment, the doctor told me I had a detatched retina. He said I needed surgery immediately, or I could go blind. The doctor was going to put a special buckle in my eye. I went into surgery five days later. I was in a freezing cold hospital room at 7 a.m. wearing a revealing, backless hospital gown and not much else.  The nurse put 5 or 6 different kinds of drops in my eyes. Then came the IV. I HATE needles. After waking up from surgery, I was given codeine and a peanut butter sandwich. I barfed up the sandwich soon after eating it. The doctor told me that I would have a gas bubble in my eye for the next 3 weeks. It would diminish gradually as the days went by. I remember leaving the hospital and the sunlight was overwhelming. I felt like someone jammed a 500 watt flashlight in my eyes. For the next few weeks, I had a white square of fabric covering my eye and I could see the gas bubble. It was so weird-like the bubble was in another world under my eye. I slept a lot, and didn’t eat very much.

The point to this story is that I HAD to have the surgery. I’m glad I had it, but I would have never gone through it for the sake of beauty. I really have to question the sanity of someone who would voluntarily put herself through 52 surgeries! Maybe she enjoys barfing and needles and embarrassing hospital gowns. I don’t know. What kind of messages did she receive about body image as a teenager? She is clearly a huge fan of Barbie. I wonder if she has any daughters. I hope not, because if she does, she is sending them a very unnatural attitude about self esteem and body image. How sad that this woman is so unhappy with who she is. How sad that our society has contributed to girls saying, “I’m not thin/pretty/sexy/ enough.”

Katie Halchishick, who modeled her proportions against Barbie’s, is on the right track. Mentoring teenage girls about body image will help them have healthy attitudes about themselves. But when fashion magazines quit selling “thin=sexy” on their covers and ads, and models on tv come in all shapes and sizes, then we will have achieved real beauty. I have seen the irony when magazines like Teen Vogue or Glamour have articles talking about changing societal attitudes about what beauty is. Then I turn the page and the model in the ad looks anorexic.

I think real beauty is inside.  Real beauty is not superficial; it goes beyond obsessing about fat bulges, crow’s feet, zits and gray hair. It comes out through positive attitudes, kindness toward others, confidence, strength and perseverance. These are truly beautiful attributes that young women should aspire to have.

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by Emily on 01-10-2011


Just the headline of this story makes me cringe.

I think it is horrific that the drug wars are so widespread that not even innocent children are safe. No children should be exposed to such violence and gore. I hope the children are able to confide in a trustworthy adult so they do not have to be consumed by fear. A school should be a place where students feel safe, free to be themselves, and free to learn. How are children supposed to learn if their schools are not safe?

I believe that greed is at the heart of the drug wars. People want money so badly will trade drugs to get it, regardless of who is hurt or even killed in the process. The question “What can be done to stop this violence?” does not have an easy answer. Is it stricter border control? U.S. government intervention?

On a much lighter note, this short article raises the recent issue of Yahoo news articles being too short. I have read comments from readers saying that they feel Yahoo is leaving out important details, not showing pictures that would provide clarity. Maybe Yahoo needs a refresher: the 5 W’s and an H. Who, what, where, when, why and how. Yahoo, remember that while your readers appreciate short articles, they also want to be informed.


Filed Under (Uncategorized) by Emily on 01-10-2011

I walked down the hallway in the music department hall in Eppley.  A student with a South Park shirt with Cartman saying, “Screw you guys! I’m going home!” walks past me. I ask him if he has a piece of gum that is not pink. He looks at me like I’m nuts-his eyes kind of bug out-laughs and says, “No.”

Another student who is sitting down in the hallway smiles at me. I tell her about my weird professor giving me this awkward assignment. She tells me that she does not chew gum.

My assignment is to find someone who has gum that is not pink. I am supposed to describe the gum, the person chewing it, and have a quote from the person.

I get a drink of water and I walk down the stairs. I see John Bowitz and I ask him if I can talk to students in his class. He corrects my grammar and says that I “may” talk to his class. I smile and walk in. The class is working with clay and other ceramic materials. I walk up to a friendly-looking guy and ask him if I can ask him a weird question. He says, “Sure.” I ask him and the class in general if anyone is chewing any non-pink gum. One of the students sticks out her tongue and asks if her gum is pink. I tell her that it is. Another student tells me that he does not chew gum.

I thank them and walk down the hallway, past the individual music practice rooms. I walk past Terri McGaffin’s office. A fan is running in the doorway. I look in and she is sitting at her desk. Then I remember that I have to talk to someone I don’t know. Since I went with Terri to New York for a May term trip, she does not count.

I keep walking and I turn the corner. A design classroom door is open and I decide to walk in. There are students painting, washing out brushes, and mixing colors. I don’t see a professor at first, so I am a little nervous. I don’t want to disrupt anyone. Then I look in the back of the room and I see someone who I assume is the professor. I say, “hi,” and I tell her about my descriptive assignment. She is very nice and she tells me that I may ask the class if they have any non-pink gum. A girl raises her hand and I walk over to her. I set my notebook and pen down and I tell her about my assignment. Her reaction is one of curiosity.

We talk. Her name is Alexis Stabile. She is a sophomore transfer student from Colorado State University. The gum she is chewing is white and spearmint flavored. I ask her how long she has been chewing it, and she says, “I’ve been chewing it since the beginning of class, for two hours, and it has lost all its flavor.”

Alexis shows me the gum package. It reads, “Trident Original Flavor”. Since she wants to keep her gum, I ask if I may take the package instead. She tells me that it is empty, and that I may have it. I thank her and the professor, then I head back to the classroom.