A Montage

I suppose this is the end. My last blog. The last post I write, and the last one I publish. The last piece of writing I do for Ojai Valley School – the place that has taught me how to write.

I came to school my freshman year having written essays before, but only formal, structured pieces for English class. I’ve always been one to write down my thoughts – I carry around a journal and have always documented my raw emotions. But before coming to OVS, I had never shared my writing with others.

Freshman year, I sat down in my first Humanities class, unaware of the flood of writing to come. Reading journals galore, I had little blurbs of writing due once or twice a week. Those reading journals were analytical, but they allowed me to delve into my thoughts and share my own interpretation of the material – something I had never done for school before.

And I think those reading journals, back in freshman year Humanities, bridged the gap between writing for myself and writing for school. And that allowed me to delve into Journalism, which introduced me to writing for others.

Fast forward four years. Here I am, at the end of senior year. Freshman year, I learned the value of my own thoughts in writing. And sophomore year, when I started taking Journalism, I truly learned the wonder of writing. I found my voice, and learned how to tell stories. I learned how to paint pictures of other people’s accomplishments and what goes on around campus. I learned to blog – to write metaphorically, and to eloquently share my deepest, most honest emotions. I truly learned to put my thoughts into words, and to fearlessly share them with the world.

So, again, here I am, writing my last blog post. I have written all sorts of blog posts over the past three years – ones that are funny, sad, sarcastic and honest. And now I have to wrap it up. This is the last thing I will write this year, for any class. The last bit of work I do before I graduate, the last bit of work I do in high school.

That’s pretty crazy.

Today is Wednesday, May 31st. On Friday, June 2nd, I graduate. I’m beyond excited, but also terrified. It doesn’t feel real. I always knew I’d get to this point, but now that I’m here it’s hard to grasp. It’s hard to believe that it’s me. I’m about to graduate high school. I’m about to be in college.

I can’t believe I made it. I know that’s a cliché thing to say, but I really mean it. These past four years have been pretty hectic. But here I am. T minus two days and I’ll be walking across the stage.

And I can’t wait.

I’m sad to be leaving – OVS has done so much for me and I’m going to miss it. All my friends, all my teachers, they’re going to be hard to leave. But OVS has prepared me well for college, and now I’m ready to move forward.

So goodbye and thank you to OVS, to Journalism, and all the writing I’ve done here. It’s the end of an era, and a great one too.

T minus two days.

Photo Credit: i.huffpost.com

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homeless

i don’t get how everything i’ve built could be so fragile. just when you think your foundation’s set, an earthquake comes and shakes it. next a huge rainstorm. then a forest fire. or a tsunami. each disaster shakes the very thing you thought was solid. now my house is starting to crumble on contact. the walls a little less sturdy. the ground with a few cracks. but that’s why they call them natural disasters, because they have to happen. except they shouldn’t have to. you were a fire that didn’t naturally arise. you sparked something in me. i thought you were the soft ember in the fire-place, warming the whole house in a crisp, cold night. but you crept and crawled out, until the polished hardwood floor became singed beyond belief.

Photo Credit: chriscrespo.com

you burned everything. engulfed the second floor, filled with broken-down cribs and pictures lining the walls.  you exploded in the kitchen, where everything was black and it wasn’t bad cooking. you burnt the living room, even all the memories made there, the many late nights, turned to dust. you left the backyard, full of brand-new spring blooms, dead. except it wasn’t all you. my house wasn’t fireproof. my foundation wasn’t concrete, it was loose pebbles. my walls were made of rotting wood. you barely made a scratch on my already damaged surface. so, while you sleep in your warm sheets in your warm bed, I’ll be shivering under my army blanket in a foreign homeless shelter, because you destroyed my only home.

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End of the Year

The end of the year is a strangely lonely time.

You know that people will be leaving, projects are due, and so is all the school work from the past few months that you’ve hidden under your bed in denial. So I find myself strangely lonely, isolated even.

But I’m ready for summer, and my introvert battery needs a recharge. You’d think being “isolated” now would help, but it’s different.

Right now I’m isolated by work and change, in summer – recharge mode – I am isolated by choice and enjoyment of being alone. It’s different.

Photo Credit: npengage

Given the choice, I would skip the entire last two months of school, jump straight into summer and then into the new school year. But alas there are the last two months.

I don’t really like change, and maybe that’s why I isolate myself – at least I think it’s a self driven isolation. I hope it is, because the alternative option is that no one likes me. But that’s beside the point. I don’t like change because it takes me a long time to warm up to anything, and change is like a bucket of ice water on what tolerance and comfort I build up.

I’m not saying change is bad, I’m just saying I don’t like it. On top of that, I hate goodbyes. They’re often mushy and huggy and declarative, definite, final.

The end of the year approaches, and I feel kinda lonely and things are changing, fast.

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The Manchester Attack

Photo Credit: NPR

On Monday the 22nd, a bomb went off immediately after the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England. 22 people were killed, and many more injured. Many have speculated this attack was targeted toward women and young girls, as many of Ariana’s fans are female and young. ISIS has since taken responsibility for the attack, and the threat level in the UK has been deemed “critical”.

Since the devastating attack, many have responded to the attack, and while many responded with grief over the lives lost, others used the attack to support their twisted ideas. Daily Mail blamed Ariana for THE DEATH OF 22 PEOPLE because of her CLOTHING.

Image Credit: bishopikediblog

Now, we all know the Daily Mail is a sexist piece of sh*t newspaper that doesn’t possess an ounce of writing talent or substance, but COME ON! Blaming a woman for the death of children and adults because of her clothing? That’s disgusting. The reason 22 people died was because of a terrorist, not Ariana.

Many are also using this attack to fuel the notion that all Muslims are terrorists. An article from the Huffington Post states, “94% of terrorist attacks carried out in the United States from 1980 to 2005 have been by non-Muslims.”

So, let’s be a little smarter, white America.

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It’s here! Graduation!


(Photo Credit: http://www.dec.org)

It’s here!… Wait… What? Our class is graduating from high school? That’s not possible, I thought the year just started?

Yes guys, graduation is finally here and this is the last blog I am going to write for the Ojai Valley School Journalism team. For those of you who read my blog one month ago which talked about how graduation is right around the corner, well here we are, just a couple of days away from a huge turning point in our lives.

All those grueling, yet memorable years and the lessons we have learned from our peers and faculty have been, and will forever be, engrained into our hearts. I still remember three months ago, talking to one of my friends about whether or not I’d be able to remember what we had talked about that night. Believe me, I do remember what we talked about, and that moment also taught me that time passes like sand slipping through your hands.

Okay, that’s enough blabbering from me… But I want to wish everybody good luck! It’s been a joy writing blogs for the OVS Journalism team. Here we go!!! It is graduation!!!

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Two-Week Notice

Since there are only about two weeks left of school (to be exact, as of Friday the 19th, there are 336 hours left), I’m feeling a lot of emotions: stress for finals, excitement for summer, and envy of the seniors, for they don’t have to come back in September. Luckily, everyone is now handing in their “two-week notice” for summer. Told in gifs, these are the emotions that will occur during my two-week notice, and let’s hope I was right for not putting in a crying gif.

My current mood, preparing for finals:

GIF Credit: Giphy

While I’m taking a final:

GIF Credit: Imgur

When I know the answer to one of the questions:

GIF Credit: Giphy

When people ask how the test went and want to talk about the answers:

GIF Credit: Giphy

Once finals are over:

GIF Credit: Giphy

The last day of school:

GIF Credit: Good Reads

Now go forth! And good luck to everyone approaching finals week.

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How Calvin and Hobbes Grows With Me

When I was in elementary school I first encountered Calvin and Hobbes. Since then it has resurfaced in various parts of my life surprisingly more and more topically.

Bill Watterson’s perennial comic often addresses the problems and anxieties of growing up, the pain of reality, and everything in between.

Watterson manages to cleverly address issues that still persist today through the eyes of the constantly adventurous and surprisingly observant six-year-old boy.

To this day, I find myself enjoying the comics in spare moments, pulling out weather-beaten copies with broken binding hoping to find a laugh or something to prove that I’m not just panicking, that growing up is indeed hard.

Watterson manages to perfectly characterize the angsty feelings of growing up and having to face oncoming reality, and sometimes it just makes me laugh and feel happy despite the panic I feel about having to continue to grow into adulthood.

But my personal favorite remains the very last panel Watterson ever drew for Calvin and Hobbes:

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