Monday, July 30, 2012

Pros And Cons

(Inspired by one of my favourite blogger's, esetasays, recent blog post)

Pro: Competing with my family to see who can make the ugliest face. They make me laugh so much it hurts. 

Con: Hipster Whovians who get all up in my grill about having not seen pre-RTD seasons. Whatevs man.

Pro: Hanging out with my friends doing nothing much but enjoying the company, conversation and of course - laughs.

Con: Not quite managing responsibilities to the best of my ability.

Pro: Singing my lungs out in church and having the music blasted into my ears so I hear nothing but joy of the spirit.

Con: Taking on more than I should.

Pro: My mum who tolerates my grumpy doucheness when she could just smack me over the head for it.

Con: My sister is only in Auckland for about three hours on her way to Samoa this week.

Pro: She'll be in Auckland for about three hours on her way to Samoa!!

Con: Not having sleeping patterns that are in sync (lol) with the education system.

Pro: Unexpected kindness. 

Con: Perpetual fatigue.

Pro: Bloggers and vloggers who I cyber korero with.

Con: English assignment.

Pro: Finding a Craccum somewhere and reading it (well duh, what else whould I do with it?). Craccum is one of the biggest reasons I wanna go to UoA (but it's not quite a big enough reason).

Con: Writing this blog instead of doing other, more important things.

Pro: Searching something up on Google with very vague words but finding exactly what I needed because other people also searched it up using the same vagueness and general idea. 
"You discover that your longings are universal longings, that you're not lonely and isolated from anyone. You belong.” ― F. Scott Fitzgerald
Although, I'm pretty sure he wasn't referring to Google searches.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

you're so beautiful
but that's not why I love you.
and I'm not sure you know
that the reason I love you is you
being you
just you.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

A.D.D Of Sorts

I seem to have A.D.D when I do homework. I constantly switch from one subject to another. I'll do one calculus problem, then answer a bit of my biology question, then read over my chemistry notes, then do another calculus problem then go over last week's physics notes.

I've noticed this resembled frighteningly close to how I browse this amazing universe that is the internet. I'd have a few tabs open with different websites and I'd tab-hop (if that's even a term) from one to another. I'd write a paragraph of a blog, before looking up hairstyles on pinterest then I'd check my fb, return to blogger and write a bit more before watching a YouTube vid then returning to blogger because someone said an idea that I could use. Then I'd read a blog I follow, then I'd read another and another before remembering I was in the middle of writing my own.

This short attention spam is common among us youngins  right? We get bored quickly. We need constant entertainment. Even life without constant music playing into our ears makes this seem boring. We can just sit for a long period of time in the quiet doing one thing. Our lives demand colour, sound, bustling, change all the time.

And I'm just gonna finish up here because I feel like doing something else.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Thoughts: "When Water Burns"

Note: This is about a book titled "When Water Burns" by Lani Wendt Young, it's not a scientific post about the temperature of H2O, or about me burning myself with it. 

SPOILERS KINDA. I mention my favourite characters. And one that wasn't in the first book. But I don't talk about what happens. The ending and what I thought about it not mentioned at all. 
(Also, hurry up sister and sister! I want to discuss the book already! lol)

Cover design: Jordan Kwan
This book is the second of the Telesa trilogy that follows the story of a late teenage girl (around 18. wait, I think she's 18) named Leila who moved back to her mum's homeland, Samoa to find out about her heritage and all that. Also things resembling fire-bending happens. Oh, and she's in love with a dude. That happened in the first book. The second one's just a continuation (Thank you Captain Obvious). I don't really wanna write what happens in the second book but it's still in Samoa, she's more settled in and she's still in love with said dude (that's them on the cover). 

Okay, you either already knew what I just poorly summarised and could probably think of a better way to describe it, or you've never heard of the book so I didn't want to give too much away. Anyway, read what I thought about it and see if it's something you'd fancy, oooor, tell me if you agreed of disagreed with anything I said. 

I loved that it's set in Samoa and most (but not all) locations were familiar. I've read and watch lots of stories set in America and the UK and places like Rodeo Drive, Wall Street, and London Square are places I've heard lots about. They're like acquaintances - I kind of know of them, but only at face value. I can't really say much apart from what it looks like and the times I've seen them. But to hear about Samoan locations casually in the text allows me to be more easily immersed in the story because I'm so familiar with the setting. I understand the vibe, the culture, the general people's attitude there and also what it feels like to be physically there. It's easier to visualise the scene and it makes the characters seem more like real people rather than characters of a novel. They're walking in the places I've walked, they love the food I love and are surrounded by people who are similar to people I know.

It was such an easy book to read. And I don't mean in a way where the book is like one of those Aussie Bites books written with simple vocabulary in large font with fewer words. I mean that it held my attention very well. I didn't feel like skipping chunks of it because the narration was getting boring (something I'm very prone to doing). Also, (and I don't want to sound pompous and fiapoko when I say that) Lani's writing has improved since the first book of the trilogy. Her story telling is more fluid.

I liked the subplots so much that I didn't mind when the main plot was paused for a while. The story didn't feel like it dragged out because the mini stories were greatly welcomed comedy relief (thanks to Simone) and also the story didn't feel rushed because it was spaced out (great terminology, I know). 

As I did in the first book, I loved Matile and Tuala. They were my favourite characters. They were just so... real. Their dialogue, their personalities were so familiar that I just laughed at the reality of their seemingly cold yet loving attitude they had towards Leila. The little things about them, like how Matile loved the lace fabric thingy Leila brought and how she dissaproved of the use of chocolate chips in her recipe just make me chuckle to myself. The brief scenes they had never failed to make me smile.

Keahi. I didn't mind him. With any book, I find it hard to physically visualise my characters. Most of the time, they're just invisible people with personalities. But Keahi's physical appearance was a big thing to the other characters in the story. I got frustrated at myself because Lani repeatedly described his appearance but I still couldn't accurately picture it myself. I did my best and I decided I don't mind him at all. Especially his totally not ugly face. (Will "he" be appearing in any photoshoots any time soon??)

I think Daniel did to me what Edward Cullen did to others. That thing where the ideal man is painted with perfection... and more. Yeah, I'm trying not to get sucked into that dangerous place where I judge guys because they don't live by WWDD (What Would Daniel Do). Anyway, Daniel's gotta have some flaws right? RIGHT?! I'm sure Donna can tell me! She's good at shedding realistic light onto seemingly perfect things (and people). 

One more thing I liked was that it was written by an author who I know through (haha, my claim to fame right there - although I'm probably related to David Tua or The Rock too). The addiction to diet coke, Daniel's ability to think about nothing and other little details reminded me of blog posts I've read on Sleepless In Samoa. So not only did I feel a personal connection with the story, but also with the author (I have this uncomfortable feeling I'm being pretentious but I don't know how else to describe it. Eh! YOLO! haha).

So yeah, I think it's safe to say I enjoyed this book.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Word Vomit

Note: I know this is not good writing as far as structure and conveying of ideas goes. All you English thriving people, forgive me. But if you try, I'm sure you'll find something worth reading in there! Cheers :)

When I was younger, the world was more black and white. There were good guys, there were bad guys. Cinderella - good. Stepmothers and her daughters - bad. There was right (whatever my parents told me to do) and there was wrong (disobeying my parents). There were nice people (my aunties) and there were scary people (most adults from my home village). Things were much simpler although I didn't know it at the time.

However, growing up has tendency to make me see things in a different light and shades of grey are illuminated. The good guys and bad guys now have dimensions to them. You put yourself in the shoes of the mother from My Sister's Keeper and tell me what you'll do. And I guarantee you'll find someone who would do otherwise. Snape. 'Nuff said. Right and wrong are fuzzy and complex and right to someone may be wrong to someone else. Or what's right for you now may be wrong for you ten years from now, or even a week from now. Yeah, sitting down, relaxing is okay for now. However, it's not for everyday as work needs to get done and productivity needs to happen. Killing someone who called you ugly is not advised. However, a soldier in a war defending his country from invasion is a different kind of killing is it not? Nice people don't all come in picture perfect packages and you wouldn't discover their niceness until you give them the time of day.

This may have sounded like meaningless rambling (my brain isn't quite switched on today), but the point is, some things are concrete like - don't fart in people's faces. But few things are. But I think I should always try and do what's right rather than trying to keep clear from what's wrong because what I look at takes up most of my vision.

So many teenagers ask questions like "is it wrong to do weed?" or "is drinking okay" or "should I have a girlfriend/boyfriend in high school?" etc etc etc. But we're looking at the wrong side people. We should be looking at what we should be doing. Because usually what's right automatically contradicts what's wrong. But again, this principle is not set in stone and there's an exception to everything. But I believe that pursuing love, forgiveness, hope, grace is better than trying to skim through life always bordering but not quite crossing the line of what we think we shouldn't do.

But if you dig deeper, you'd know that what we do are not random acts we do for no reason. There are forces, decision making, neuron activity that dictates what our physical body performs. There is mental activity that sends signals to each part of your body to act. There are emotions and attitudes that have potential to dictate your every move.

But there is you. You are more than your emotions. Everyone has those, animals, Vulcans, humans. Everyone feels sad, angry, happy, sexual attraction. That's chemical reactions that go bizzerk without our permission. But you, and I, are so much more than emotions. Because we can decide what to do with them. Emotions don't define us, not if we don't want them to. Married people who have remained faithful required a daily decision to ignore attraction to other people who are easy on the eyes. People who redirect their anger to productivity like art, blogs or theraputic conversation overcome the bitterness the threatens to eat them up.

I don't bottom line here, this post has wandered from its inital topic. My brain latches on to different ideas and my fingers follow suit. Hope you enjoyed my rambling.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Talking To People

I don't like small talk, pleasantries or whatever else you call them. I'm a person that cares too much. I either care too much, or not at all. Which leaves no room for small, seemingly meaningless talk.

When someone asks how my day was and isn't prepared to listen to how it really was, I get annoyed (although, then there are those who do actually care but I don't have a response ready for them. Sorry 'bout that. I just really don't like that question). I'm aware that my caring about this is the anomaly in society, it still baffles me that people say "Hey, how are ya?" WHILE WALKING AWAY. Walking away! "How are you?" is a question, not a greeting. Questions generally require answers - unless it's rhetorical. And people can't be asking me rhetorically if I'm fine... right?

I like elaborating on ideas. Discussing, challenging, reinforcing or inquiring about them. Which is limited with new people. Because I like that thing they call the comfort zone. That zone of familiarity with someone. Where you can speak your mind and know you're not being judged (or at least, you know how they will judge you and it's okay). I like to know where I'm at with people so I know the limits of what I can and cannot say. Which is one reason talking to new people freaks me out. Because new people means starting from scratch; sussing out what they like and dislike and the general conversation topics that keeps their tongue going. I hate dead conversations and trying to spark up new topics when others fail.

But where there is great risk, comes great reward. Because sometimes you come across people who, you may only have one conversation with, but enrich your life that little bit more. Someone who is unlike anyone else you've met and you feel so grateful to have known them, if only slightly.

There's this one boy who I met who's weirdness kind of reminded me of myself (although, he's a bit weirder). He totally understood my struggle of deciding which flavoured sandwich (is that how sandwiches are described?) to eat and said he gets it too. I felt so normal. He liked different music to most teenagers I know, didn't know who 1D were and referred to Justin Bieber as "that Canadian guy" followed by "I thought his name was Josh for some strange reason". Talking to him opened my eyes to how different humans can be. I mean, I know that in theory but usually different people are only on television and movies. To meet someone who knows how to and enjoys the Waltz is just fascinating. And I didn't even ask for his name. Woops.

So meeting new people is not a thing I like to do. But is a thing I enjoy SOMETIMES once I, or someone else, pushes myself to do it.