fire and ice

fire and ice

she was burning with fiery, passionate love

she had eyes of burnt ember and they sparked every so often

she wanted to envelop everyone in a comforting warmth

she became her kids’ campfire so she could give them a place to sing and laugh

she burned with such fierce power that she could eradicate an entire forest or anyone who dared to hurt those close to her

Photo Credit: http://www.icompositions.com

she who smiles with the brightness of the sun

she needed someone to hold her close and add sparks to her weakening flame

she needed to burn an image of herself in everyone’s minds, so she wouldn’t die out

she needed a moment that was so bright that even he remembered her warmth

he with those icy, blue eyes that could stare into you and make your heart stop

he who gave his family the cold shoulder and now has no one

he who sleeps in an empty bed in an empty studio apartment, listening to the city life pass by him

he who makes strangers shiver when they so much as glance his way

he always froze up when near her, his face getting paler with every step she took toward him

he who could never get himself out of his dark, barren mind long enough to let himself thaw out

he was so cold that even she couldn’t melt away his icy exterior

so they were stuck in an eternal loop, the same moments, waiting and longing for a connection to bring them out of their burning, but cold misery

Psychic Experience

Photo Credit: KQED

Last weekend I saw a psychic, because for one, she was having a $15 special, (which has been in effect for about as long as I can remember) and also out of pure curiosity. So, my best friend Leila and I walked into the little yellow house with a psychic sign out front.

When we walked in, there was quite a bit of commotion. A little boy had a chihuahua on a leash, the chihuahua was jumping up our legs, and the psychic brought a shirt to a mysterious man in the bathroom.

The $15 special gave me two questions to ask the psychic, and the answers she gave me were startlingly accurate regarding what was happening in my life. On top of that, Leila and I gave her no background information whatsoever. She did not know our names, or anything about us. The answers she gave Leila were a bit suspicious in her opinion, but every answer the psychic gave us was detailed and full of confidence. I’m still not sure if there are legitimate psychics, but this experience was quite interesting.

Belief

They were on the battlement looking out at the sea of fog that lay just a foot below them, so thick it looked like the edge of the world.

She was sitting in the embrasure, the tips of her feet brushing the clouds of opaque sea.

“Fog’s low tonight,” she said to him.

“Yes, it is.” His response was clipped and uncomfortable.

She kicked her leg up and folded it so she could rest her chin on her knee. “The stigma persists, even here.”

A light chuckle bubbled out of him. “Yes, you may be in a different Kingdom, but that doesn’t mean you’ve escaped the beliefs of Norinth. Don’t tell any of the bigots and loyalists this, but all of us, our kingdoms, they’re all derivatives of the same belief. They difference is in how we approach and enforce those beliefs.

“I am sorry if I seem uncomfortable around you. In my defense there aren’t many, well, really any women in this profession or anywhere near it, not to mention you are quite a case.”

A breeze blew through, ruffling the tops of the trees peeking through the fog.

“I could catch the stars,” she said, reaching toward the sky, “and still people wouldn’t believe in me.”

The moonlight reflected blue off her unusually short hair, and her hand seemed to glow.

“I’m sure they’ll believe you eventually.” He was staring at her, unsure of what she was, because she certainly wasn’t cut from the same cloth as any of the other soldiers.

Time

I have Depression. I can’t control it – I don’t know when it comes and makes me depressed. My depression started a couple of years ago, and I’ve noticed a pattern for when it comes. Every two months it suddenly hits me. Sometimes it comes out of the blue, or sometimes something triggers my feelings and it happens. The trigger can be really simple, but it can be a big deal to me.

sun glare
Photo Credit: Evelyn Brokering

When I am depressed I feel really lonely and nothing seems interesting, it is very painful. To forget the pain I make myself busy by participating in activities and doing projects on my own. When I am not depressed I am very happy, I laugh at stupid jokes, hum along to my favorite songs, and blast music in my room and dance with friends. I forget how I felt when I was depressed, and I have a great time.

I think the only solution to solving my depression is time. I need time to process things. I hope that time will actually solve it, and until then I will keep myself busy.

Thoughts of the Unathletic

Photo Credit: ClutchPoints

Saturday night was the OVS Alumni basketball game, and, even to my surprise, I attended. I’m not much of a sports person, and this, in fact, was the first basketball game I have ever watched (aside from seeing Lamar Odom’s game scenes in the reality show “Khloé and Lamar” and from passing by my living room while my dad has a basketball game on.)

I have many questions. Do the players ever get scared of going for the basketball? I mean, it could hit you, or just give you calluses on your hands. Also, the players run into each other a lot. If it were me, I’d stay far away from the pack of players, which, obviously, is counterintuitive and pointless – maybe this is why I don’t play contact sports. Also, do some players foul each other just so they can go back to the bench? I’m pretty sure I saw that happen once, and that’s definitely what I would do. But, after watching the game tonight, I have a great deal of respect for the student and alumni players. They have a lot of athletic talent and the ability to run for 40 minutes – two things I do not possess.

Video games – could they be a sport?

Photo Credit: Performgroup.com

There’s a lot of controversy surrounding whether Electronic sports, or E-sports, as it’s called, should be considered a sport. Competitive video gaming has seen immense growth in the past 10 years, as technology has allowed companies to make better and more immersive games.

The platform for E-Sports has grown like crazy – E-sports events have more viewers than the NBA Finals, and the numbers are closing in on the famous NFL Super Bowl. In 2011, E-Sports and game streaming start-ups alone have raised up to 714 million USD. During the Starcraft finals back in 2011, the viewership was stunning as it had up to 3.5 million people watching around the globe. Since then, the viewership of E-Sports has risen more than 300% to a stunning 11.7 million people watching the recent Pro Circuit Championship in 2012. The prize pool for these events can go up to the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Some parents who once discouraged their kids from playing video games now see the potential they have for earning higher salaries than professional athletes by playing video games as their job.

So, is gaming a real sport? I think so. It requires strategy and critical thinking, and also a lot of stamina, just like sports. E-Sports athletes often retire by the age of 30-35. It’s demanding. For those of you who disagree, I would like to formally welcome you to the digital age.

Super Bowl Nation

On Sunday, February 5, 2017, many amazing things happened. There was the first overtime in Super Bowl history, in the last quarter of the game the Patriots came back from a 25-point difference, and Tom Brady was awarded his fourth MVP award. This year I was a lot more in tune with what was happening on the field, but I did stick to my roots as an avid commercial watcher. This year, there were many advertisements that caught my eye.

Featuring the faces of many and the simple message that “we all belong,” Airbnb’s #weaccept commercial took my breath away. Along with spending a bucketload of money on this commercial, Airbnb is donating $4 million to the International Rescue Committee, providing for over 100,000 people in need, like refugees, for the next five years. Airbnb’s efforts are a beam of light during a time when many people’s rights have been challenged.

Another commercial that stood out was Coca Cola’s #AmericaIsBeautiful. This minute-long commercial features people singing “Amazing Grace” in over five different languages. Interestingly enough, this commercial isn’t new – in fact, it was Coca Cola’s commercial in 2014  as well. However, the beauty of this commercial is only amplified by its meaning. I think the coming together of many different people is what makes America great, and that we, as a country, should embrace those differences.

This year, I was especially excited for the Budweiser commercial, especially because of the amazing #LostPuppy commercial back in 2015. In their 29th year of Super Bowl advertising, Budweiser featured the story of one of their founders, Adolphus Busch, coming all the way from Germany to make this famous beer. This was among the many commercials to tell stories of immigration and generally embracing different cultures. The commercial shows the rough conditions that entrepreneurs had to go through to make their dreams come true – a success story that I find truly inspiring.

Unfortunately, there was one commercial that got cut short: 84 Lumber’s story about the journey of a Spanish-speaking mother and daughter. After being hotly debated, Fox decided to cut off the end of the commercial, which shows the family encountering a wall, as it was “too controversial.” Since Fox has the right to deny any advertisements they choose, the private lumber company showcased a revised version of the commercial, and prompted viewers to watch the full version on their website.

Most articles that have come out about the Super Bowl commercials have described them as overly political. I understand how the commercials could be seen that way, but the messages of acceptance are ones that need to be spread. The leaders of our country can bring up these controversial issues, but companies and organizations can’t truly voice their opinions without being seen as controversial, as many people will fight back saying that these commercials are pushing a certain agenda. How are their agendas any different from ones being presented everywhere in politics?

Severin

Erasmus would never forget the first time he saw her. She was dressed like every other woman in court, wearing a bright color, white, a tight-fitted bodice and a loose skirt.

The white made the golden tones of her skin stand out, and her dark hair looked like liquid night. There was a layered gap where extensions had been added to adhere to court fashion. Her face was all sharp angles. Hunger and ice lived in her eyes. She was a waif, but her steps were steady.

No one knew yet why she was there. But once they learned, they wouldn’t look at her the same way.

She looked to everyone else like a visiting noble to be presented to the court, but she wasn’t.

It was in the subtle movements she made to catalogue the room – the way her hands never quite stopped moving.

Erasmus could tell she wasn’t a normal woman. She didn’t look like she was from this continent and he had never seen her before.

The room paid her no heed, there was no reason to, she wasn’t uncommonly pretty or striking, she had no particular air about her that asked the room to look at her, but Erasmus knew by the way the consul from Norinth was looking at her that she meant something more.

Cal Lutheran

On Saturday morning at 10 o’clock, I visited a college, Cal Lutheran, in Thousand Oaks, CA. I was curious about this college because it is opening a new multi-media building in fall, 2017. Also, my grandfather, Herb Brokering, is a famous priest among the Lutheran community. Although I am not Lutheran, I am interested in becoming one because of my grandfather. He wrote plays, books and songs for the Lutheran Church. 

The day I visited this college, I was worried that it would be very conservative and strict, since the name of the college is “Lutheran.” However, it was not. It was as nice as other colleges that I visited before, and had a very open-minded community. For example, they were giving out free condoms, and talked about other religions, like Islam. This was very interesting to see at this type of school.

The campus was very natural, surrounded by mountains and a creek, but it is still close to cities like Malibu and Los Angeles. I really enjoyed the tour and am considering attending this school.

Photo Credit: http://www.callutheran.edu

Paris Couture Week

Paris Couture Spring/Summer 2017 Week is over – the runways have been taken down, venues dismantled, the models have jetted off, and photographers are off to their next job.

This fashion week featured sheer and embellished fabrics, top models, and dramatic venues. Dior balanced their collection with light and dark influences, Alexandre Vauthier focused on minis, and Maison Margiela served a fierce, ethereal collection. Social media’s favorite models, Gigi, Bella, and Kendall, all closed and opened shows during the day and partied at night.

But, what also comes with fashion week is the amazing street style. Celebrities, influences, bloggers, and rappers all popped from show to show wearing the season’s best trends and setting new ones. Here are my favorite runway and street looks of Paris Couture Week:

Alexandre Vauthier

Photo Credit: Zimbio

Maison Margiela

Photo Credit: thechrisellefactor

Christian Dior

Photo Credit: Zimbio

Photo Credit: Vogue Paris

Photo Credit: FashionFreaks