Saturday, May 28, 2011

The Most Beautiful Profession

It is an amazing day when you first realize that for the first time in your life, you are proud of an accomplishment. Done by someone else.  Although we thing it happens often, think about a time when you saw someone else achieve something and you watch without even a trace of jealousy.  Just pure pride.  I witness it in two cases only - one is parenting.  The other is what I think is the most honorable and truly beautiful profession that anyone can take - and that is teaching.  When I first started teaching, honestly, I did it for the money.  I wasn't a professional teacher or anything, just a high school student that wanted to make some extra easy cash.  But I have grown to love teaching inside and out.  There is something remarkable about watching your students grow and know that it was because of you and solely because of your teaching.  I have not even begun of thinking about children yet because of my goals to grow professionally, but each student is a child to me.  It is one thing to hear about this relationship like this - even in elementary school, teachers always go on about how each class is a class of children.  I thought it was all bull.  It is not.  
What is probably the most revealing aspect of teaching is that is turns selfishness into dust.  It is spiritually engaging and mentally clearing.  If I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life, I think at this point I would say teaching just because of how it affects me mentally.  Yesterday I was growling in frustration.  After putting on a happy face for my student, a half hour later, I was in great spirits.  No lie.
So what is my point?  Maybe sometimes we take teaching for granted.  However, I feel like becoming a teacher is one of the greatest efforts you can put in towards making society a better place.  You take a step towards becoming a better person while changing the world.  What more beautiful profession can there be?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Learn it damn it!

I speak to all of America.  Why won't you get an education?  Why won't you take the time to open your textbook in grade school and then proceed to go to college.  I don't give a crap about what your reasons are - getting an education is better for YOU and for AMERICA.  What irritates me most is the people who love to comment on how the American economy sucks and how people don't have jobs.  Stop complaining, damn it.  Make it better.  And let me tell you exactly how:  Get an Education.
Can't afford it?  Well, yes you can.  There are millions of scholarships out there - did you know that?  You know those people who say that they got enough scholarship to be paid to go to college - it didn't come easy for them.  They studied their asses off in grade school and did well on standardized testing and they spent hours at a computer trying to find money and sending out essays to get it.  You can do it too!  Well, only if you have the drive to do it.  Tell me one good reason why you shouldn't have that kind of drive.
OK, so your poor and your parents won't let you pay, or you have a family to take care - then fill out one application - the FAFSA.  Tada!  You get an outpouring of money.  Are you African-American or Hispanic?  Well now is the time to shout it out proudly to the entire world, because you can get scholarship money like it falls from trees.  No, I am not bitter because I am not either one, but I am shocked that it is not being utilized.
And by the way, did anyone force you to go to an excellent top notch school?  Is that what I said.  NO!  I said get an education!  Did you know that College Board said that to go to a community college while staying at home costs about $2352.  This was in 2008.  OK, give a couple thousand dollars more.  Still not bad, right?  I don't think you need a 20 year loan to pay that much off.
OK, so you end up taking on some debt after going to college.  Do I need to regurgitate the statistics behind going to college?  Apparently I do.  Here you go.

This is from he Bureau of Labor Statistics.  Click the picture to get the big picture.  The unemployment rate for someone with a high school degree is about 10%.  The unemployment rate for someone with Bachelor's degree is 5.4%.  Almost half.  Not convinced enough?  The average high school diploma earned $626 per week.  The average person with a Bachelor's degree made $1038 per week.  That's about $50,000 per year.  I truly, honestly believe that getting an education is the best thing you can do for you and you dependents.  Take the time and effort NOW to do this and the benefits will be countless!  Please please please!
You are part of American, now it's your time to help clean it up.
Many thanks. :)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Sun Got in My Eyes

SPOILER WARNER:  I will be giving away many details of Albert Camus' L'Etranger today, so if you do not wish to know the ending of the book, please do not read any further.

I came upon an interesting theory as I was researching about existentialism for this post.  It really delves deep into the fact that humans are fundamentally free to make choices.  So free that sometimes, it is terrifying.  The example I cam across looks at a person who is standing atop a cliff.  That person may feel the fear of falling but also dreads choosing to throw him or herself off of the cliff.  Basically, nothing is there to hold you back from choosing to fall or to stand, one way or another.  This kind of freedom is fundamental and powerful, therefore terrifying.  Connecting this situation back to existentialism, the truth is that every single action we humans take, is laden with choices such as these.  We can blame the result on, really no one but ourselves.  This is a hard concept to grasp and one that Meursault is able to, awaiting his day of execution.  To put it crudely, the universe simply does not "care" about us.  The world will continue to spin if we commit an error or if we do something awesome or if (like Meursault) we kill someone.  Kinda scary.  Actually really scary if you think about it too much.  But I'll leave with a happy idea that stems from this kind of philosophy.
My parting thought:  Don't take your mistakes so seriously.  Enjoy what you have and don't dwell on the past.  Another day will come and the earth will keep spinning, even though you erred.  Embrace your life and forgive your mistakes. :)

Monday, May 9, 2011

I'm Absurd, You're Absurd

Moving on to a topic that has greatly interested me, but however is kinda heavy.  I believe I will be posting about this topic for some days.
Absurdism and Existentialism
Every since I read Albert Camus' book L'Etranger (The Stranger), I have been just blown away by these concepts which are so freely exposed and explored in the book.  An excellent read, by the way, and please go ahead and feel free to read further.  I can promise that there are no spoilers in this post.
I am an extremely science based person.  I like things to be rooted in science, explained by natural processes, and every thing be comprehensible.  Camus destroys those notions.  He made me understand that certain things are just simply not to be comprehended and it takes bravery on the humans' part to accept that.
It is absurd that I am posting this right now.  How is it possible that I have survived 4.5 billion years of explosions and today I exist?  Am I living in a dream?  Maybe I am the only person that is alive and everything else is just like a motion picture around me.  Have you ever thought that?  What made me post this today - I could have done it tomorrow or the day after or etc etc.  Look at the world as a whole.  It is absurd that you should be reading my blog today.... absurd that you stumbled across it... absurd that you are alive.
Sorry, perhaps that went too far.  But I think I make myself clear.  So many things in a human's life is totally based on chance and every roll of the dice is absurd because the die is so multifaceted.  Every decision is made by some neurons in the brain right?  So what stimulated those neurons to act the way they did.  Perhaps some outside forces such as other peoples activities or from objects that were created by people.  But what stimulated those peoples' neurons to make the decision that impacted you?  And so on into infinite...
But enough for today.  Too much philosophy can make you become self-immersed and anti-social.  I think that's unhealthy.
So my parting though for today:  Take advantage of the roll that your die has landed on today.  Make the most of it, because there is a high chance that it may not happen again.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Charum Zob

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet."
Romeo and Juliet (II, ii, 1-2)

A fair point brought up by Missy Juliet.  Every time a noun is spoken, we automatically put our brains into cruise and we come up with all sorts of assumptions about that thing or person.  For example, you say "Nancy" and I think some middle-aged, middle to upper class, working American woman with 2 kids.  You say "diamond" and I think "rich guy."  I think the bigger problem here is that we make assumptions so quickly.  I feel like this is a shortcoming of mine and a shortcoming that I find around the world.  Making assumptions leads to prejudices and even more particularly to racial bias. 
Today as I was waiting for cash to pay for tickets to an event, I watched as one lady charged 12 bucks per person for one family and 11 bucks per person for the next family (two families of different ethnicity  I leave it up to you to decide what they were).  Excuse me?  After inquiring, apparently it was just a mistake.  I don't know if I buy that.  
Leave the story aside, I felt saddened that such racial bias still exist today.  Hello???  The Civil War ended in 1865!  Not yesterday!  Do me a favor and please accept everyone for who they are and not by their name or any other characteristic.  Actually, I take that back, do it for yourself.  I honestly believe that tolerance can be a person's single most endearing personality trait.  
And so today, I leave you with a question: What do you think when I say Charum Zob?

Saturday, May 7, 2011

THE Inauguration

To the world: Here I come.
To me: Why am I wasting my time?

I have never blogged before.  But I am hoping it is not one of those things where I keep at it for... ahhhh.. 5 minutes. An example of that... journals.  Well well well, I don't know how well this is going to work.

However, I feel the need to openly write about my ideas and thoughts and not keep them suppressed as I have done for so long.  Not everything I write will blissful reading, not everything I write will be exactly perfecto in English either (for those of you who have been correcting my sentences and spelling as you read).  But it's what I've got and I hope you like it.  Not that I'll discontinue if you don't.

And so, today I conclude with the captivating thought of: World, Here I Come.