Judgment & Discrimination

I don’t understand the stigma around tattoos and piercings, and the shaming of general presentation of oneself. The fact that someone has to censor their appearance out of fear of getting a job is corrupt. Everybody should feel safe to express themselves how they choose without having to worry about judgement and discrimination.

However, this is not to say I don’t see the reasoning behind this societal rule. It would be difficult for someone covered with crude tattoos from head to toe, or with piercings covering their face to escape judgement. While this person could in fact be incredibly kind, I believe it’s safe to say most would not want him/her to perform their heart surgery, nor teach their kindergartener.

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I believe the only rational argument in this case to be the fact that although only a generalization, it can often be inferred that someone who would get an obscene face tattoo suffers from a mental illness. Therefore, it is fair to prevent these cases from working important jobs.

However, more times than I can count I have heard “with that piercing, he/she will never be taken seriously” or “with that tattoo, he/she will never get a job.” A few, small piercings or a small, tasteful tattoo should not affect judgement of a character, and especially not an employment decision.

Everybody expresses themselves in different ways – different wardrobes, jewelry, cars, etc. Why should body art be any different?

Again, I’m not talking about those with obscene tattoos or piercings, as people with insane clothing choices are likely to be judged equally. But there is no reason someone’s small depiction of self-expression should negatively impact how they are perceived.

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If an interviewer is unable to see past a tattoo and view a person as a whole, then honestly, the job in question might not be the job for them. Although a matter of opinion, tattoos and piercings do not represent somebody in entirety.

To put it simply, it’s not fair to discriminate against people solely because of how they choose to express themselves.

Burgers and Fries Oh My

In order to graduate from Ojai Valley School, each senior must successfully complete a senior project. These projects range from visiting Alcatraz to camping on an island for a week. My best friend, and editor, Kendall Shiffman and I have decided our senior project is going to be “burger telephone,” more commonly known as “taco telephone”

We will begin the journey at Stout Burger in Santa Monica, California. At this first location, we will ask the employees what their favorite burger is there, and order it, with fries of course. We will taste the burger and fries, and rate them on a rubric we have created.

After finishing our meal, we will ask another person where their favorite burger is in Los Angeles, and so on and so forth.

We will continue this cycle until we have tasted around ten burgers over the course of two days.

So. Excited.

Cottage Dreams

I have recently grown quite enamored with the idea of living in a cottage in the middle of nowhere growing my own food, or buying an obscene amount of non-perishables, and retreating from everything.

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Yes to anyone who is extroverted and feeds off of social contact maybe this isn’t so great, but alas the idea of getting energy from social encounters to me is probably the second most exhausting thing in the universe.

I mean by no stretch of the imagination am I not social I just need some serious me time after. Understandably selfish if you’re the one I’m blowing off, oh well I’m kind of sorry if it’s any consolation.

I’ve always loved the idea of living somewhere that looks like it comes from a fairy tale. And if I can’t live in Hogwarts, a cottage in the woods is the next best thing. There’s something that is so distinctly cozy about this idea that I simply can’t ignore it.

I’ve always bounced around with my ambitions.

What can I say I’m fickle to the moon and back; for a brief time I dreamed of being a city rat or doing some crazy job surrounded by adoring people; or maybe travelling, never settling down living a vagabond life for all of eternity.

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But recently I’ve had some revelations.

Yes I love travel, but then again I hate leaving, I fall in love with places too easy, I’d probably destroy myself trying to live eternally on the move. My possessions would lose value, I love my family far too much to leave them for too long, and mostly I like coming home. And so it was decided, no vagabond life for me I’ll never stop fantasizing about it, and I’ll probably try to live it for a few years then head home and stay home.

Now, the aspiration to be surrounded by adoring people and city life…yeah not happening. This life calls to me no longer, at all. I might live a city life for enrichment purposes, but never for a long amount of time. Too much helter skelter, too much contact with strangers, not enough time to just be.

I’ve now turned to the idea of finding a way to do as much as I can without sprinting. To find a way to be comfortable in my own skin, my own life-pacing. Living in a cottage outside of the common world bubble seems incredibly suited for someone as naturally hobbity as me.

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Not saying I don’t have a bit of a Baggins in me, adventure will always call  but there will also always be the shire to return to.

I am out of my time, surrounded by flashing neon and a world full of people trying to be louder and bolder than each other. Trying to outwit the clock, sprint faster than the second hand. Never enough time.

I like to take my time, I like to watch the clock and count with it, I like to see it stretched out in front of me. I like to see its line slowly meandering across the horizon. A horizon I could see out the window of another world.

Child Brides

There are somethings about this world that just sicken me. Somethings that I cannot fathom or understand why they are integrated into society.

Child brides are one of those unexplainable and nauseating tragedies that society is plagued with. Thankfully, the United States is not one of those countries that participates in this horrific custom. I couldn’t imagine living in fear of being married at eight years old to a man who is old enough to be my grandfather.

I understand that the reasoning behind these marriages are often for financial reason, but what I do not understand is how the parents are okay with practically selling their adolescent child to an grown adult.

Don’t these parents have any compassion for their young child who has not yet lived their life, had an opportunity for an education or fallen in love?

Just because this is a custom that has been long ingrained into particular cultures I am blown away by how parents are content with doing this to their children. Do they not have a basic understand of what is humane, just because they are from a different country?