My next life…

What a life pets have. Especially the pet who lives on campus: Jack the cat.

Jack is loved by students, gets full attention and is very spoiled. He gets food and treats from the teacher, Ms. M., everyday. Ms. M. even bought him food and water bowls, as well as a cushion for him to sleep on. These days, it has become a daily routine for Jack to come to her to get treats. He spends most of the day on her desk sleeping.

When we are in class, he meows outside the classrooms to let people know he wants to come inside. We always open the door for him, even if we are taking a test. He walks in and wanders around, and eventually rolls on his back allowing the students to pet him on the stomach. Everyone adores him and we all say “hi” when we see him, even though he ignores us. I want to be him in my next life.

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Jack the Cat — Photo Credit: Evelyn Brokering

Aubrie and Daisy

Every month, Netflix updates its movie collection, and ever since 2013, it has put out some new shows with each batch. Recently released was Audrie and Daisy, a documentary that caught my attention.

Released to Netflix on September 23rd, Audrie and Daisy tells the stories of two high school girls’ experiences with sexual assault.

The first girl, 16-year-old Audrie Pott, had gone to a high school party. She was black-out drunk when a group of three teenage boys sexually assaulted her. When she woke up the next morning, she was berated with hateful comments at school and online. It was only nine days later that she hung herself.

The second girl, Daisy Coleman, had a similar story. When she was fourteen, she and her best friend snuck out and went to a “party” in the basement of seventeen-year-old Matthew Barnett, grandson of a former state legislator. There, Coleman was pressured by Barnett and his friends to drink until she was in a coma-like state. When she was immobile and asleep, the boys continuously raped her for hours. She woke up frozen on her front lawn and was immediately rushed to the hospital. Even for almost 12 hours after, her blood alcohol level was a striking 0.1349 (the legal limit for Missouri adults is 0.08.) Immediately following her recovery, she was harassed online by kids at her school and even adults online.

When I heard their stories I was appalled by our society, even though these events happened nearly four years ago. I feel ashamed to live in a world where people who sexually assault others can walk away from a victim they just took something from, and not face any severe consequences. I feel ashamed to live in a society where victims are driven to suicide just so people will stop making their terrible memories even worse. I’m ashamed that grown adults join in on the childish gossiping and bullying.

News stories of these two rapes held a certain air to them. When Matthew Barnett was put on trial, the news anchors refused to say that Coleman had been raped. They would talk about how Barnett’s grandfather was a state legislator and how he would simply apologize to Coleman and be granted two years’ probation. He would walk free, while Coleman would always have to live with what he did to her. She would have to live with the constant criticism in her home town.

We should learn how to help victims of any crime, especially ones as sensitive as rape. We should learn to teach our children not to rape people. We should teach our children not to say things without thinking of the consequences.

Click here to read an interview with Daisy Coleman.

Halloween

Photo Credit: Urban Matter

It is now mid October, and IT’S STILL SUNNY AND WARM IN OJAI. This irritates me to no end, which means this post will be a long rant.

In Ojai, and pretty much all of Southern California, three of our seasons are summer, and the fourth season is kind of cold, but not really. This means, there is a very good chance that Halloween will be a warm, sunny day. There will also be no cool decorations around town like the Jack O’Lanterns in Chicago (pictured).

Disneyland, scary movies, and cold weather are all things I associate with Halloween. But, obviously the cold weather part isn’t exactly true for California.

But, Halloween is still one of my favorite holidays, whether it’s 80 degrees (ew) or 50. And, The Tower of Terror is closing at California Adventures, which is an amusement park tragedy. But it’s all ok, because after Halloween, Thanksgiving Break will be closer than ever.

Shoes Are Just Shoes

Shoes may in fact be the singular most important thing put on in a day. They affect the way you walk, the way you experience your day. Goodness knows the power of gorgeous, uncomfortable shoes and their ability to change your entire outlook on the upcoming week.

How you see yourself in the morning all comes down to your shoes. Are you a little taller than you were yesterday? A little more fluid, a little more grounded?

Even to those without shoes on, their shoes affect them. They decided not to wear them, and this influences the rest of their day because, simply put, there are certain things you don’t do unless you have shoes on.

While many would argue that they just throw on the same shoes they wear everyday without thinking about it, that is still their decision to have a “usual” action.

Photo Credit: Road and Track

Are you determined to look as good as you can? More laid back? Aiming to be fashionable? No matter the reason, shoes outrank your clothing.

Shoes dress up an outfit or dress it down. Shoes change the way others see you. Yes, people will see your cool bomber jacket, but are you wearing it with heels like a model, so you can feel like the rest of the world is your personal runway Are you wearing it with trainers, making the world your personal path? Or are you wearing it with boots, telling the world to get out of your way ’cause you mean business?

Your shoes are one of those decisions that make you, you.