Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Quick Update Thingy

I know... I've taken over a week to write. Sorry. I've had one busy week. I spent most of last week out of the house instead of in it. I do have legit things to write about soon. I've made my decision as to where I'll be attending the rest of my college career. I have one more midterm to do, but won't do it until Spring Break is over in 2 weeks. I've got some saint dreams I want to share, as well as some "little" miracles that have happened lately. Dad got back from Mexico this morning and brought me this beautiful chapel veil. I'll hopefully have pictures of it in the next entry. *thinks* Uh, I think that's pretty much it. Thank you to all of you who prayed for my dad during his trip. I heard some scary stories but thank God that he made it back safe and sound. I should probably go finish my English paper. :D

'Til next time, thanks for reading (and for keeping me entertained on twitter :D). God Bless! :D

P.S. Yes, I threw tater tots to everyone on my facebook using the SuperPoke feature. Yes, that includes you too, Matt Warner. lol.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Bus Adventures; Midterms; Transfer Decisions; Music Monday.

If there is one thing about taking public transportation, it's that you never know how your trip will go. I have been relying on L.A.'s massive public trans system to get everywhere, for the past week. Dad's out of the country... and he took the car keys so no one would use either of the cars while he's gone. Pfft. Anyway, I've had my fair share of bus adventures... though I don't know if any could top the ones I had on Saturday and today.

On Saturday, we took the bus to Sherman Oaks (where I did some of my growing up) to go shopping for a while. On our way back home, we encountered the rudest bus driver I've ever seen. A mentally disabled man passed by and tapped his card (we use TAP cards when we take multiple buses throughout a period of time) twice (on accident). When he figured it wasn't working, he went back to his seat. The bus driver, who already looked like he was in a bad mood, tried to explain to the man about the card but the man was focusing on getting to his seat so he missed the convo. The bus driver then started calling the man a *bleep*h*le and basically humiliating the poor guy. When the man said he was mentally disabled, the bus driver said "yeah, no kidding!" Completely uncalled for and all. The guy went up to the bus driver and showed his disabled card... but still continued to berate him with a number of profanities. I took the bus driver's number and info, all while the driver glared at me with a menacing look. I don't care how much you try to intimidate me, I'm reporting your butt for being such a punk.

Today's rides were interesting. I had no less than 3 former classmates in the same bus coming home from school. All 3 were guys I went to school with prior to the age of 13 so it was interesting to see them again. They all looked at me like "... do I know you...?" but two of them didn't say anything. Now, I don't know who thinks it's a good idea to divulge so much after not seeing someone for the past 12 years, but it's not a good idea to do so. Asking me for my number, after you tell me (with pride) that you just got out of jail and that you fathered a child at 15, won't get you that number. I don't care if we were in the same 5th grade class, it's just not gonna happen, kid. I've had some interesting experiences with guys on buses but this one takes the cake. Where's my bodyguard when I need him? lol. Oh, and did I mention that prior to all of this, the bus driver to school nearly ran over two elderly men... at two different stops? One of those times, the bus came to a screeching halt and all of us were thrown forward. I'm amazed no one got thrown on the floor or hurt in that. I won't be taking public transportation for the rest of the day. lol.

Something I WILL be doing the rest of the day is studying for my midterms. Well, one of them. I have my Philosophy of Ethics midterm on Wednesday. I don't think we have a midterm for English Lit, but we do have an essay due on Wednesday. My Philosophy of World Religions (one of my favorite courses ever) prof. pushed our midterm until after Spring Break. My Speech prof (whom I'm still fighting with) is unclear about the midterm for us but I am ready to take it whenever he gives it to us. I will definitely be saying a prayer to St. Joseph of Cupertino (patron saint of students and exam takers) just because I want to do really well on my midterms and he's come through for me in the past.

Another thing I have to think about in the next few days, and probably ask St. Thomas Aquinas for his intercession, is making my decision on where I'll transfer to. I didn't tell anyone that I'd applied elsewhere as back up options (because I didn't want to jinx it), but it seems I now have options to go elsewhere. I have the option for two universities in England, apparently there's a loophole for UBC (University of British Columbia) since I'd be transferring so that's an option again, as well as two public universities in L.A. I've already nixed going to UBC, even though living in Vancouver is basically a dream for me. I have friends near both schools in England (one near the English countryside, one up north) so that's appealing. If I were to chose one of the schools in L.A., I'd have to change my major to an English (with an emphasis on Creative Writing) major, Religious Studies minor. Or I could just keep going to Mount St. Mary's College. The only thing about that is that, out of all the options, MSMC is the most expensive. Yes, even more so than the unis in England. I just don't know. I have a lot of thinking to do, and only two weeks to make up my mind. If I decide to go to school in England (which I was originally going to do two years ago, before my father's second battle with cancer kept me here), I'll have a chance to check both of the schools out since I have Spring Break starting mid-next week. Also, I have friends who are basically threatening to kidnap me and take me to London (whoo! lol) so it'll work out. We'll see what happens.

Alright before this turns into a novel, I'll stop... but not before Music Monday's video. This is for all of you who are in the middle of midterms. Listen to Dinah Washington and "Relax Max."

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Alright, I need to study. *sigh* Just a few more days until Spring Break. I can do it... I can do it... lol. :D Good luck to everyone who has midterms this week and next!

As always, thanks for reading and God Bless. :D

Friday, March 20, 2009

Quick Note: Popple at Catholic Underground!

Just a quick note for y'all in Southern California. Tomorrow Popple is performing at the next Catholic Underground (L.A.) meeting. If you haven't heard of them, please check out their website... or simply go see them live! The event is taking place at St. Victor's Church in West Hollywood. I believe they start at 9 p.m. Hope to see some of you there. :D

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Merging Two Cultures; The Mission Continues; Catholic Blogs.

I interrupt my studying/homework thing for a much needed blog. Okay, so the blog isn't necessarily needed but I need this break for the sake of my sanity. I only have about two more pages to write (or roughly 500 words) and then I am done. So close... so close! lol.

I know it's not Music Monday, but, darn it, I am having music problems... sort of. It's music and cultural problems. First, I have to find a way to merge Mexican folklorico with Spanish flamenco into one dance. How I'm going to do that, I have NO clue. All I know is that if I don't find a way, there's a good chance I will offend either the Mexican or Spanish side of the familia. I've already been advised to just stomp my feet a lot. Haha! Yes, they have that in common but doing too much of that will only make my feet angry at me. I don't even want to think about the music, or even what I'll be wearing. Oy. I'll figure something out.

This is something I have to do quite often, and sometimes it's hard because I think there's still some bad blood between both countries/cultures. If I say I really want to go to Spain (especially for the World Youth Day in two years), but decline an invitation to vacation in Mexico, I get "the look". I want to eat posole but not paella, or vice versa, I get "the look". It doesn't help that when I speak Spanish I don't have an accent... and when I do, the dialect is more Spanish (Castilian) than Mexican. The only safe thing that I can talk about, without offending either, is the religion. Thank goodness both are primarily Catholic (though Spain seems to be more and more secularized than Mexico). I can show my love of St. Teresa of Avila (a Spanish saint) and St. Juan Diego (a Mexican saint) and have everything be fine. I love that there's no religious intolerance between these cultures.

While there are no religious issues between countries, I am still struggling with it in my family. One parent refuses to go to Mass (and even puts up a fight every Saturday I go to confessions and every Sunday I want to go to Mass). The other is a little more willing but I've probably gone to Mass by myself more often than not recently. I even volunteer to go to the Spanish Masses so they can go, but nothing. When I told my mom I was open to a religious vocation, a while back, she was against the idea. I have since then figured out that it is not what the Lord has in store for me, which made her happy. Her reaction, she says, comes from attending a Catholic boarding school and having to deal with "mean nuns" in her childhood. The only people that have had an influence on me have been my mom's Godparents (whom we don't see often), one of my paternal aunts, and my paternal grandmother (may God rest her soul). In fact, I still have a mantilla my grandmother handmade for me before she passed away a few years ago. She used to go to Mass every day with her veil. I remember her wearing them, when she took to take me to Church as little girl. There's something about that that I find absolutely beautiful. I've had a couple of priests ask me how it's possible that I'm so into the faith, while my parents are the opposite. Trust me, I don't know. All I know is that my mission to get my parents back to the Church continues. I've seriously made that my ultimate goal and I won't quit until I get them to come back. And if you know me well enough, you know I'm stubborn enough to get this to happen... eventually. Haha. I only use the "stubborn mode" for good. lol.

I should probably stop writing and get back to my homework. *groan* Just two more pages and I am done for the week. I'll only have one more class to work on (which I can finish in about half an hour) and I will have the weekend free. Whoo! :D Alright, I'm off to watch the Seattle Sounders vs. New York Red Bulls match... while I finish my Speech assignment. Yes, it CAN be done. It's impossible during a Liverpool F.C. match, especially with the amount of screaming, dancing, and celebrating I do (teehee :D), but for all others I can multi-task. :D.

Oh, before I go, I'd like to point out that I have a couple of new Catholic blogs listed. A few were requests and a few were added because I thought they deserved to get more readers; I liked all of them. If you're a St. Jude devotee (like me; he IS my patron saint, after all), St. Jude Novena Blog is a great place to visit. And, Verbum Veritatis (Word Of Truth) is one of my new favorites, as well. If I have yet to add yours, please let me know. I want to help y'all get more readers. :)

I'm stalling, aren't I? Okay, I'll shut up now. lol. :D As always, thanks for reading and God Bless. :D

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

"Catholic" Colleges; Haunted Dorms; Belated Music Monday.

Okay, so I originally started this post last Friday but due to insane amounts of homework and other things have prevented me from updating. Anyway, I have time now so...

I'm wondering how many people out there attend "Catholic" colleges and universities. Why did I use the quotation marks around the word Catholic? Simple. "Catholic" colleges were founded by/for Catholics but have strayed from the teachings of the Church. These schools usually have performances of the V-Monologues, birth control access on campus, gay/lesbian support groups and festivals, and other things. Though I have been a student at my particular college for nearly 2 years now, I have yet to actually attend it. Financial issues have prevented me from physically attending the school but I still consider myself a part of it. I still get emails from the college (to my student email account) about film screenings, volunteer work, and events happening at the college. All of it gets me excited about finally attending it this Fall (when I will finally be able to apply for the loan to pay for it myself). I was doing some research, because there is only so much you can find out from friends and from campus visits, and I found out two things that made me cringe. 1) It's held performances of the V-Monologues, and 2) they've had pro-choice/pro-abortion speakers at the graduation ceremonies. You can argue that since the school is compromised of about a 97% female student body, it would make sense that these types of things happen... except that it's a CATHOLIC school therefore those things shouldn't have taken place in the first place. I know they haven't performed the V-Monologues in about a year or two (or three), which I'm happy about. Still, I know that with other things, I will probably have issues with. I was considering applying elsewhere, maybe to a place like Thomas Aquinas College in Santa Paula, CA or Ave Maria University in Naples, FL... somewhere more faithful than where I'm at. I was really considering it until Andrew (from Per Fidem) sent me this quote:

"If you want your kids to defend their Faith send them to a public school, if you want them to lose their Faith send them to a Catholic School."
-- Archbishop Fulton Sheen

I'd actually started thinking about staying at my school, and fighting against any anti-Catholic activities that might take place, prior to getting the quote. Reading it only re-affirmed my decision to stick it out and do what I can to make sure it remains Catholic. I'm not much a fighter, and consider myself more of a pacifist (with occasional sarcasm, lol), but for this I would totally step up and say something. I know someone high in the ladder of administration thinks the school should be seen as "truth-seeking" instead of a "church"... which really bugs me because I know exactly what is meant by that. This person should listen to Bishop Martino about how "because it is a Catholic institution, it also has a responsibility to transmit Catholic teaching to its students in ways that are not ambiguous or confusing." I don't know just how much of a fight I have ahead of me but I welcome any challenge because it'll only make my faith stronger. I mean, students have fought against birth control being distributed on campus (with a positive result). More and more universities, such as Santa Clara University, have begun banning the V-Monolgues.

Oh yeah, and that whole thing about the dorms being haunted... uh, the scariest thing I've found on that campus is how slow the elevator in the Humanities building is. lol. We received an email, from the school's newspaper, asking for stories about haunting that have been going on on campus. Apparently, a ghost of a nun is seen walking through the halls of one dorm, and another ghost is seen in the elevator of another dorm... neither of which I am signing up for. Haha. That wasn't intentional either. I chose my dorm/apartment a year ago. :D I don't know what to make of it. I'm not a fan of supernatural things. Psychics? Don't believe 'em. One once told me that I'd be married with a child by my 23rd birthday. I haven't come close and my next birthday (the big 2-4) is a little under 3 months from now. :D Ghosts? Uh, I get enough fighting with them and demons in my nightmares, thanks. A friend said this was common is all schools? *shrugs* Thoughts? Comments? All are welcomed on this topic.

So, since I missed Music Monday yesterday (I was literally out from 6:30 a.m. until 6:15 p.m.) I have a belated video to share. The song is called "Typical" by Mute Math.

I LOVE Mute Math. Rumors are that they started out as a Christian Rock band but have asked that the label not be put on them. Knowing this and listening to their songs, especially "Chaos" you can see there are many ways you can interpret the songs. *shrugs* Even if they weren't, I'd love their music. :D

Alright, that's it for now. I hope to write another one tomorrow because I have some special requests I've been asked to write about... and I want to get those done as soon as I can. As always, thanks for reading and God Bless. :D

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Faith Trashing Professors; Ethics Speech; Prayer Request.

I'm having one of those days where I'm missing my big brother, quite badly, so I have to throw myself into things to keep from thinking about it too much. I know he's up in Heaven, and that brings me some comfort.


Oy to the vey. School related things are slowly taking over my free time. If I'm not studying or doing something for one of my classes, I'm probably sleeping or trying to keep sane. This ought to teach me not to get another early morning class... and that what I was able to do at 19, I can't at 23 (i.e.- getting up at 5:30-6:30 a.m. for a 6:30-7:30 a.m. English class). Come to think of it, I was even more exhausted then. This is something I should've remembered 3 months ago when I signed up for the course. Oh well... now I know. :) On the upside, 5 weeks into the semester and no anxiety whatsoever (well, not at school) so that's something worth celebrating.

Something not as good... faith trashing professors. Ever since that situation with the professor ripping on a student's faith, professors have either been more sensitive to what they say about religion, or they talk trash about it and about whoever talks about it. Since it happened within the district, some of my own professors have brought it up in class. One, my English prof., politely asked us not to bring the subject of religion into her class. I've already talked about how another allows students to gang up on a classmate of mine (and occasionally on me because I have the guy's back; we Christians need to have each others' backs). Don't get me started on the issues I have with that professor. lol. Since my other two classes (which are both Philosophy courses) deal with religion, it's unavoidable talking about it. In one of the classes, I've had a few people attack me... ONLY because I'm Catholic. Yes, that was the only reason. It was like "Pick on the Catholic" day. Of course, I said "Bring it on!" and defended myself. It wasn't too harsh so I didn't stress it.

In my other Philosophy course (Ethics) there's no Catholic bashing, per se, but the professor always says something about Catholicism which is either somewhat untrue (half correct, half incorrect) or just doesn't seem too happy talking about the religion. (He's a Protestant, in case you're wondering, though a very liberal one from what he says he supports.) Though he's brought up saints and even the late, great Pope John Paul II, he doesn't seem entirely okay with our beliefs. When my friend/classmate, and fellow Catholic, asked about St. Augustine's Confessions, the prof. sort of dismissed it because it was autobiographical. She and I just looked at each other and shook our heads. That's actually something you'll see us do quite a bit in that class. I'm happy I have someone who shares the same beliefs and morals as I do. We even spent Monday and yesterday comparing what medals and things we had. She had more medals than I did, but I have more prayer cards on hand. It's nice to know she'll have my back in case the vultures attack on Monday... which I'm counting on.

On Monday (or possibly Wednesday, depending on time), I have to present an Ethics speech either condemning or supporting an ethical issues. I chose abortion because it's the one that I'm most passionate about. That, and I already did an anti-Euthanasia paper for a Criminal Law class (when I was still thinking about becoming a lawyer) a few years ago. I think I have enough material to make it through the required 3-4 minutes of my argument against abortion, thanks to my friends on twitter who sent me a slew of great links. The only part I'm dreading is the questions portion because there's this guy in the class, who is sincerely disliked by a number of classmates, who is a pain in the tush and one of the rudest people I've met. I tend to be painfully shy when I'm in a classroom full of people I don't know (and ONLY when it's in a classroom setting) so I'm easy prey for the guy. I think he's already singled me out, too. The girl who gets up to make a speech and has an bright pink/red blush... yeah, that's me. I'm trying to keep positive thoughts about it, though. I will definitely say a prayer to St. Dymphna for a calm, anxiety-free mind, and to St. Thomas Aquinas - patron saint of students and philosophers. I'll let y'all know how it goes.

Before I end this blog (despite having more to talk about), I want to ask y'all a little favor. My dad is leaving on business tomorrow and we're not sure when he's coming back. He's going down to Mexico where there has been a lot of violence in the past couple of months. If y'all can say a little prayer, that he makes it back safe and sound, I'd greatly appreciate it. He and I might not always see eye-to-eye, especially when I want to go to confession and/or Mass and he refuses to take me, but he's still my dad and I don't want to see anything bad happen to him.

Alright, that's it for now. Part two is coming soon. I still need to write about soon-to-be attending a (not so) Catholic college... and the haunted dorms in said college. Fun! lol. :D

Oh, something that is fun is this video which is the greatest thing I've seen all year.

Is that enough procrastinating? lol. I think I need to go finish my Speech class (not my Ethics speech) homework. :D As always, thanks for reading and God Bless. Oh, and if you have anti-abortion/pro-life links please send them my way! :D

Monday, March 9, 2009

Quick Update: Music Monday

Just a quick Music Monday update because I'm running on empty. LONG day full of homework, 6 a.m. wake up call, so many errands and meetings I had to taken -- I'm exhausted. I WILL hopefully have a new blog post tomorrow though. For now, a fun little music meme I saw on Lady of the Rose's blog and, of course, the Youtube video of the week. :D

1. Set your iTunes, iPod, Windows Media Player to shuffle.
2. Copy and paste the questions into a new post and erase my answers.
3. Answer each question with the next song that comes up.
4. Post your results! And feel free to add a comment underneath each answer!

If someone says "Is this okay?" You say:
"The Battle" by Harry Gregson-Williams. (Interesting.)

How would you describe yourself?
"Give Me Words to Speak" by Aaron Shust (If you know the lyrics, you know this is right on the money.)

What do you like in a guy/girl?
"Sentiment" by the Tord Gustavsen Trio (Haha, yes... to a certain extent.)

How do you feel today?
"Unexpectedly" by Misha Williams (Yes!)

What's your life purpose?
"Darcy's Letter" by Jean-Yves Thibaudet (To be a writer? *hopes*)

What do your friends think of you?
"Another Dance" by Jean-Yves Thibaudet (Haha. Well, I am a dancing machine...)

What do your parents think of you?
"Say It" by Britt Nicole (Lyrics wise, I would say it's accurate.)

What do you often think about?
"Volare" by Manuel Granada (Yes, I'm constantly dreaming of flying to different places.)

What do you think about the person you like?
"Sayuri's Theme (Live Version)" by John Williams & Yo-Yo Ma (Hm... *shrugs* Darn the instrumental tracks!)

What is your life's story?
"Georgiana" by Jean-Yves Thibaudet (If you've read Pride and Prejudice, you can make up your own conclusion to how Georgiana can relate to me... 'cause I don't see it.)

What do you want to be when you grow up?
"Can't Slow Down" by Jean-Yves Thibaudet (A roadrunner? Hmm... I haven't thought about it before. Can I drop an anvil on a coyote?)

What will you dance to at your wedding?
"Lucky in Love" by June Allyson, Peter Lawford, Mel Tormé, Patricia Marshall & Joan McCracken (I hope so... the lucky in love part.)

What will they play at your funeral?
"The Blitz" by Harry Gregson-Williams. (I'll be terrorizing people? *raises eyebrow*)

What is your biggest fear?
"Cherokee" by Charlie Barnett (Don't think so.)

What is your biggest secret?
"Chasing Pavements" by Adele ("Should I give up? Or should I just keep chasing pavements, even if they lead nowhere?"

What do you think of your friends?
"Rusty Halo" by The Script (Haha. Hmm... "Now I'm looking at the Bible, trying to find a loophole..." You know who you are and why this is true. Ahem. :P)

What is your future going to be like?
"Outside" by Aqualung (Does this mean I'll be constantly traveling? *she hopes*)

What do you see in the person you like?
"Raggle Taggle Gypsy" by Celtic Thunder (Irishness? lol. Wait, is that even a word? Hmm... it is now.)

What will the song be for you and your spouse?
"Volare (Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu)" by Jack Jezzro And Friends (The lyrics are nice enough...)

Well, that was interesting. Not one of my better ones (I've done this before), but perfectly acceptable AND a good way to take a break from homework induced stress. :D

The song I've chosen for today's Music Monday is "Set the World on Fire" by Britt Nicole. Good song, great lyrics... and I promise the guys the next one won't be as girly. Guys have given this song a good review but some say Britt's music is "too girly". Whatever. lol. :D Hear and decide for yourselves.

Okay, now I am off to bed... right after I finish an application I have to send to my school tomorrow. :D I promise to write a legit blog soon. :D As always, thanks for reading and God Bless.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Twitter; Twilight Series Review.

See? New post in a couple of days. I'm getting better at this. :D I've had a break from school due to my being sick again so I've had time to catch up on schoolwork, emails and twitter.

I have been meeting many cool Catholics on twitter. Someone was smart enough to compile a list of all the Catholics on twitter (on Tweet Catholic) and we've all been "following" each other. It's great to see how nice everyone is! If you have a problem, you'll get at least two people replying to you within the minute. I've had my twitter account for about a year and some change but I've only started updating regularly in the past 2 months. If you want to be added to the list, or see who's on it, please visit their site. :D I'm somewhere in the 120s. You'll recognize my username (nerdwriter) and name. Oh, and please feel free to add me if you already haven't. :D

One thing I've been meaning to write about for months is my review on the Twilight book series. I already sort of reviewed the movie but not the books. I need to say that I saw the movie before I read the books. I seriously try to keep away from these type of fads but I caved and saw the movie, then read the books. As I said with the movie review, I was surprised. I actually liked the movie more than I thought I would. It was tame compared to the books. The books were... wow. I actually read the entire series (four books between 500+ and 700+ pages) in a week. (side note: This was all before I headed back to school.) I was going to do a book by book review but that would take forever and I won't have time for it in a long while. Instead, I'm going to give you guys my impression/review on the entire series.

I liked and disliked the series at the same time. I loved, loved, loved that it was surprisingly pro-abstinence and pro-life. Yes, underneath all that lusting Bella did, and despite her numerous attempts to get Edward to give on his "not until marriage" deal, it was kept very PG-13. In fact, Edward kept reminding Bella (often annoyed at her persistence) that he wouldn't even consider it unless they were married... and even then, he wasn't too keen on the idea because he could hurt her. But, as I said earlier, there was way too much lusting and I can definitely see reviews by others about it not being suitable for young teenagers. The last book was quite intense (I actually got physically sick from reading it because of the gruesome details). There were a few redeeming qualities though. Bella and Edward got married in the traditional sense, with a pastor. They waited until their wedding night to get intimate (and, thankfully, Stephenie Meyer just implied it and didn't go into great detail about it). AND when Bella gets pregnant (don't get me started on this), Edward and most everyone else is wanting Bella to "get rid of it". Bella refused to get an abortion, and even got her "sister-in-law", Rosalie, to protect her against any possible attacks. Bella got close to dying during her pregnancy, and especially during the too graphic birth scene, but she refused to have the abortion. She would coo to her stomach that she loved him/her and that nothing would make her change her mind about giving birth. I greatly appreciated the fact that Stephenie put this into the novel, especially considering how many young women have read the books. Bella's love of her child mattered more than her life, which many women in real life have also done. I've read several articles on Catholic women diagnosed with cancer and other illnesses, whom all gone through the pregnancy and have died either during childbirth or shortly after. St. Gianna Beretta Molla is an excellent example of this.

Sadly, beautiful messages such as that were seem to be overshadowed by other events in the series. Besides the lusting, which I've already mentioned and which is ever present throughout the series, there are some serious issues. First, a lot of graphic and detailed images that are put into your head. I would be weary of my younger adopted sisters on reading the first couple of books, and I would snatch the books out of their hands if they got the last two in their hands. Particularly, the last one where there's way too much sexuality for their own good -- both implies and described. There were a few other things that bothered me. Bella was too wrapped up in Edward. So much so that when he left, she fell into a deep depression and was just completely unbearable. I honestly think it's completely unhealthy to have your world revolve around someone that intensely. Edward, though I liked his character more than Bella's, was also very possessive (sometimes on an unhealthy, creepy level) of Bella. I understand that they felt an intensity in their relationship but it was too overdone. It gives girls the wrong ideas and will give them fantasies that THIS is the type of relationship you should have.

I can't count how many times I've heard girls fantasize about having a Twilight style romance. It disturbs me to the core. In a recent article of the Busted Halo (called Twilight Zone), Marie Pitt-Payne is quoting as saying she believe the books are "an equivalent to soft porn … for girls." I have to say, I agree but only when it comes to the last two books. The first two books barely squeak by as being very intense teen novels. The last two, under 18 beware! If I didn't keep reminding myself to look for some redeemable qualities in the books (trying to find some things that could be viewed as positives, such as the underlying abstinence and pro-life messages), the messages (up to Bella's pregnancy and the birth of Bella and Edward's daughter) would've been completely lost. It's very easy to get sucked into the romance and I can see how women are falling for Edward (and the movie's actor, Robert Pattinson) left and right. But, I think they should remember that a) it's a fictional story and, b) like most fictional stories, that's not how things work in the real world.

In the real world, Bella and Edward's love affair doesn't exist. Heck, they don't exist. To try to replicate it is dangerous. As I often say, if a man wants to win my heart, he must first find his way to the Lord. I think it is incredibly important to know yourselves and have a relationship with God before you enter a serious relationship. Also, it is NEVER a good thing to play with temptation. Seeing just how far you can push it, which is what Bella often did with Edward. She pushed his buttons, trying to get him to cave, until he got so upset she dropped the subject. Playing with fire will get you burned. Have people forgotten that lust is one of the Seven Deadly sins? Also, there's too much idolatry of another person. I can probably find all Seven Deadly sins in the book if I looked hard enough.

This entry is getting really long so I will try to wrap it up. In a nutshell, do I recommend these books? A definite "NO!" to the younger readers. To the older reader I'd say, if you really want and if you can't help but read them out of sheer curiosity... read with caution and know yourself and your faith before reading them. While there are good moral messages in the book, it's mostly lost underneath piles of things that you'd probably go to confession for (if you think about it too much). Again, read if you must but I'd put up a caution flag on it.

Alright, well, I think that's all I can really say on it. I tried to give you guys the gist of it because I know I tend to write more than I should. What can I say? I'm a writer. :D I'm going to go enjoy the next hour of my night (to bed early) and think about my novel. It's coming along well and all I need to do is finish writing it. I already have enough material to complete the story. I think I might have a sneak peek coming up in the near future too... ;)

As always, thanks for reading and God Bless!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Fighting FOCA, Professors; Lent; Music Monday.

The picture, and the message in the picture, is simple enough, right? As Catholics and Christians (and, really, human beings), it is our duty to protect all lives... from moment of conception until natural death. It's horrible to think that people are so gung-ho about getting the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) passed. The basic gist of it (without really getting into the specifics) is that if the law passes abortions will be completely legal in all 50 States and Catholic hospitals will have to close. President Obama has shown his support for it since before he was elected. In fact, he said that one of the first things he wanted to do once he became president was to make sure it passed. Because it's OBVIOUSLY the best thing he can do for this country and the people he's supposed to have his best interests for. (I hope you can note my sarcasm is the last sentence.) Give me a break!

I think you can guess what my position on this whole deal is, and since I know a lot of other Catholic and Christian bloggers, I won't rant about the FOCA. Instead, I will share some pictures that I took at Our Lady of Peace, one of the parishes in the Los Angeles Archdiocese. It was taken two weekends ago. This was part of the 40 Days for Life campaign many local Catholic churches are doing during Lent. If you ask me, this is so much better than giving up something for Lent. (Click on the pictures to make them bigger. Oh, and if you want to use them, please ask.)

Information table.
From Fighting FOCA

Signs letting the parishioners know what the cause was.
From Fighting FOCA

Information about the FOCA for all to see/read.
From Fighting FOCA

Do you need more than this baby to show you what you can help prevent by fighting FOCA?
From Fighting FOCA

There wasn't really more that I could take pictures of. It was a simple, yet effective, thing they were doing. Both mom and I signed the postcards/letters that were sent to President Obama, Senator Barbara Boxer, and our local councilman. Oh, and have I mentioned that someone at Sen. Boxer's office emailed me asking me to sign some thing to THANK Pres. Obama for everything he's done for us so far and for trying to get the FOCA to pass? I knew Sen. Boxer was pro-choice before I opened the email so I was said, out loud, "Whatever you're selling, I'm not buying." I will NOT sign anything that shows even once iota of support for a man who's fighting to pass something incredibly harmful to human beings. No way in you-know-where.

You know what else I refuse to do? I refuse to back down from talking about my beliefs in a classroom. If you read one of my previous updates, you know about the Speech professor at a Los Angeles Community College that called a student a "fascist b****rd" for using his beliefs to make a point. Remember how I said that it affected me, because I'm currently (for this semester only) within the L.A.C.C. system? Well, little did I know I would ALSO have similar issues with a different professor. I currently have a professor who seems so offended by talking about our own beliefs, that it's hard to enjoy the class. Not only has he told us to "keep dogma out of the class" and has had issues with another classmate of mine over it, he has allowed other students to attack said classmate. I'm seriously waiting for them to attack me (though, I should check my messages before I am certain no one's attacked me yet) because I've already spoken up on behalf of myself and my fellow classmate. He and I will no doubt be joining forces (we've already discussed a bit about this in private) and having each others' backs this semester. I usually don't bring religion into a class discussion that isn't about the subject but when a professor asks us what we believe in true, saying that we believe in God and that He is the truth should NOT be an issue. I'll keep you guys updated on this. I have a feeling this won't be the last time I'll be mentioning it. (side note: I'm SO HAPPY I'll be attending a Catholic uni. this Fall!)

Anyway... ooh, so, I'm wondering what everyone gave up for Lent. I didn't give anything up because I give up different things throughout the year (I'm currently on an "no iTunes or mp3 purchases" thing until the end of March, possibly Lent). I AM going to be donating at least one thing every weekend during Lent, though. Food, clothing, money... that is what I'm going to give. Honestly, the giving up something during Lent thing doesn't have as big of an effect on me because, as I said, I routinely give up things during the year. Giving, though, makes Lent that more special and contemplative for me... especially with the way the economy is looking. Did anyone give up facebook? I know a few people have done that in the past, including myself. Any specific foods and/or drinks? I know Lent is more than just "giving up" something; I'm just curious to see who gave something up and why. We all have our different reasons, and ways of celebrating Lent. :D

Alright, well, I DO have more to right but I'll give you guys at least a few hours to digest this one. I might write another post tomorrow but no guarantees. He Who I Refuse to Name (haha) has been giving me a lot of inspiration for the novel so the creativity is flowing. A couple more of our movie dates and I will be done with the novel before I know it. :D

Oh, and one more thing... I want to start a new tradition on here. Much like Dymphna's Well and her Astaire Fridays (which is where I got this idea!), I will be posting a youtube video of a song that has a special meaning to me OR that I think you would like. The first video is by someone near and dear to me with awesome music! I've written about her in a past blog. Okay, so, yes, I'm a little biased when it comes to her music because, well, she's been one of my best friends since I was 16-17 years-old... but honestly, I LOVE her music and would whether I personally knew her or not. Without further ado, "She's Got It" by Misha Williams. :D

*cough*Go check out her music!*cough* :D Alright, it's past midnight and I need to get some sleep. I didn't anticipate the blog being this long... or it taking this long to write. Yikes! :D

As always, thanks for reading and God Bless!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

I'm Alive, I Promise.

Yes, I know... no update in more than week. School, man, is really keeping me from having a life. I also had an allergic reaction to some food a few days ago, and that kept me in bed for a full day. I felt so fatigued and just horrible. Ick. Also, I haven't been home as much as I am used to (LOADS of errands and school related things to do) so... yeah. I DO have a lot to talk about though. I have quite a few pictures to share, as well. I am hoping that I feel well enough to post a full blog tomorrow. Well, that I feel well AND that I have the time to do it. There's simply not enough hours in the day for me. Since it will supposedly be raining for most of this coming week, at least here in Southern California, the odds are that I will be indoors more than I have been the past couple of weeks.

mmkay, I should go finish my Philosophy of World Religions work. I have two things I need to turn in in less than an hour. Trust me, I am not stressed... or anxious... but I will be if I continue procrastinating. lol.

I will be back soon to blog-land. :D