Friday, April 17, 2009

That isn't funny..

Last Friday my group did a presentation on humor in the media and where we draw the line between what's offensive and what's not. I'm really happy we chose this subject for our presentation because it's definitely changed my perspective. I now watch TV and notice all the stereotypical humor about men, women, blondes, red heads, and race. It's amazing how in almost every show they include characters based on stereotypical jokes. There's the dumb, but pretty blonde. The fat, dumb husband who can't do anything right. The mean, nagging wife who sucks the fun out of everything. The red head that gets made fun of or simply ignored. It's in almost every aspect of media. 

Now that I'm noticing these types of jokes in everything I see or watch, it's beginning to ware on me. I not finding these stereotypes as funny anymore because they are so overdone. Also, I never really laughed at the derogatory  or sexist women jokes because I thought they were stupid and rude. Why am I going to laugh at something that directly insults my own sex. It makes no sense. I have a good sense of humor, and I'll show you that I do, but not by laughing at a stupid joke that demeans women. I'm not the type of person who can fake things very easily. I am very real with people, in fact, sometimes to a fault. So I'm not going to sit back and pretend to laugh at a joke just because I feel embarrassed or uncomfortable about its contents. So that's how I'm going to shoot down sexist, demeaning jokes toward women. I'm not going to laugh. Instead I'm going to sit there in silence and hopefully make the person feel lame for telling an offensive joke. 

Friday, April 10, 2009

Technology Now-a-days

After learning about all the advances in technology that are happening every single day, I began to feel overwhelmed. I just found out about Twitter, like a month ago. I had no idea what it was until I kept hearing "Twitter this" and "Twitter that" from other people, and finally I asked my roommate about it. What a weird concept. 

After thinking about Twitter, I couldn't come up with any reason why something like this would catch on, or benefit anyone in anyway. After going to class this week, I guess I was mistaken. I can really understand how Twitter could be used as an effective PR tool. It can get information out to millions of people, very quickly. I could also see how it might be useful if I was going to Disneyland and wanted to see if the lines were long or the weather was good. These examples were brought up in class and it made sense how Twitter might be useful. I haven't signed up for Twitter yet, truthfully I don't know if I will. Sometimes I feel like I already have so many things online to check everyday, why would I want ANOTHER thing to look at or waste time with when I should be doing homework. 

I don't know... All I know is that it's SO hard to keep up with our ever-changing technology. And this whole idea of being able to track people, wherever they go, with their phones, is a little too much for me. Maybe I don't want everybody to know where I am at all times. Maybe I want to remain mysterious and have a little ME time. 

Someone made a comment in class about going to his cabin and being away from all technology. I have the exact same situation. My family built a cabin in the very secluded mountains of Idaho. We own 10 acres, so we are very isolated. We don't have TV, phones, internet, anything!!! And it is GLORIOUS! Seriously, it's one of my favorite places on Earth. It's quiet and beautiful. I look forward to getting away from it all every time I go there. It's a relief to get away from the craziness of this world we live in. My dad asked my siblings and I if we were interested in getting TV at the cabin, and it was a unanimous NO! 

I agree that technology can be a great thing. It can make things easier and faster. I used technology everyday. It's hard to go an entire day without it if it's readily available to us. But getting away from it for a time, can be grand!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Women's Sports


The presentations in class today were really interesting. They got me thinking. Good job gang.

I am sad. I am sad about women's sports. I am sad they don't get much attention. I am sad they aren't on TV very much. I am sad for those athletes. I am sad they don't get the recognition they deserve. And I'm saddest about being one of those people who don't watch women's sports, for no reason at all. 

Me of ALL people should watch women's sports. I LOVE sports! I PLAY sports! I KNOW sports! In fact, when I was in junior high, I was on the girl's basketball team. We were good. Good enough to win the whole dang thing when I was in 8th grade, and then getting to the semi's my 9th grade year. Needless to say, we didn't have anywhere close to the same amount of fans the boys basketball team had at every game, AND they weren't even good! Now that makes no sense. I can't say I didn't notice the difference in interest between the girl's and boy's team. But I didn't care, I just wanted to play and win. 

When I was in high school I played for the softball team all three years. We got even less recognition then my basketball team did. Once I was asked by a fellow student what sport I played, and when I replied softball, he wasn't even aware the school had a softball team. Now that makes a girl feel good! SHEESH! Needless to say again, we didn't have much of a fan base. The fans mostly consisted of our parents and some friends. Slowly we started to gain a little more recognition and fans, but it was still miniscule compared to the baseball or basketball teams. I remember being in the newspaper a few times and always having to look in the pages AFTER all the baseball statistics and articles. Why is it that the girl's sports are always reported after the male's? What ever happened to ladies first? Is chivalry dead? I hope not cause I've always liked it. 

I used to watch softball sometimes when it was on TV. I used to watch women's basketball when I was dreaming about being in the WNBA, but slowly over time, I stopped. I follow the Jazz, I follow the Cubs, I follow the Redskins, I follow BYU. ALL male sports. I'm going to start watching more women's sports. I've been inspired and I'm going to start a revolution. A watching women's sports revolution. 

Friday, March 27, 2009

Who cares?

Okay, so I'm going to let loose on this one. We talked about the Livestrong bracelets and how EVERYBODY had one. In like a week it became the coolest thing to be seen wearing. I wouldn't even be surprised if a lot of the people wearing them didn't even know what they were signifying. I didn't have one, but I thought that what they stood for was good and motivating, and if people wanted to wear one, good for them. 

I understand the importance of being an individual and how people want to express themselves by wearing unique things. But who the frick cares if everybody wants to wear the same wristband. If it means something to them, then they should wear it. I think calling that 'conforming' is stupid and single-minded. What if wearing one means something different for each individual? Doesn't that make that person unique in their own personal way, even if it is not seen outwardly? 

I wear an orange wristband every single day. It may not be stylish or what's "in" right now, but I wear it because it has significance to me. I'm not wearing it to stand out or to be unique. I'm not wearing it to fit in or join a fad. I'm wearing it because of what is written on the band. 

I know that we judge and make assumptions, in one way or another, every time we look at another individual. When we come in contact with a new person, we look them up and down and make a presumption or conclusion about why they're wearing what, and what kind of person they are, or what they like, the list goes on and on. I think it's important not to jump to conclusions and make a decision about someone based on what's on their wrist or what brand of shirt they're wearing. There is way more to a person than what kinds of clothes people wear and what brands they like. 

Friday, March 13, 2009

Ads, Brands, and Logos

When we walked around campus this week writing down every logo and brand we saw, my eyes began to grow wider and wider. After only 15 minutes of walking around, we were able to write down close to 200 brands and logos. It's no wonder that we are completely overloaded everyday with brands, ads, and logos. 

What's even crazier than the massive amounts of ads we see everyday, is the ability that we have to see a logo and know what it's representing within a second. When I was walking around campus looking for brands, it was amazing how I didn't even have to think about what the logos represented. I would see a brand, like the Swoosh and immediately write down Nike. I would see three lines on a shoe and think, Adidas. I would see two golden arches and know it was McDonald's. These logos are SO familiar to us, they almost become second-nature to us. We don't even consciously have to process in our minds what we are seeing, we don't have to decipher what these symbols mean, we just know. These types of logos are super effective because they have become easily recognizable, unique, and universal. Basically, if you didn't recognize the Nike Swoosh, people would think you were from another planet, that's how ridiculous branding in our society has become. 

Another interesting aspect of branding is what we associate that particular brand with when we see it. For instance Wal-Mart, some may think, "inexpensive", others may think, "ghetto." The most critical aspect of creating a brand is that when people see it, they associate positive feelings with it. I know that I have bought the well-known brand at the grocery store, even though it was more expensive. When I'm looking for sneakers, I tend to buy only Nikes because I have been pleased with every single pair I have had. But it's more than that, I'm sure I could find great shoes in other brands, but my loyalty lies with Nike. Why? I'm really not sure. I guess I think they are cool. How did I come to this thinking? Probably good advertising. 

Friday, February 27, 2009

HIP HOP

Watching that Hip Hop video in class made me want to puke. When I heard the way some of the rappers talked about girls, I felt sick to my stomach and disgusted. In class, I remember some comments regarding the difference between “sisters” and “bitches”. Some of it had to do with how the women dressed. It also had to do with whether these women would give it up to the guys or if they would stand up for themselves. So basically, if you’re showing more skin, then you’re more likely to give it up.

I’ll admit I typically dress on the conservative side. I don’t show a lot of thigh, or cleavage or whatever. But what if I did? Would that mean that I am more willing to give it up to a guy simply because I’m showing more skin? No. I’m not saying that women should show lots of skin simply because they can. I’m just saying that if a woman WANTS to dress a certain way, then she should be able to do that, and not necessarily be thought of as a slut.

 Also, if a woman doesn’t tolerate a man coming up to her on the street and smacking her butt or touching her inappropriately, does that make her a “bitch”? Seriously, the perception that these guys had of women was so disrespectful; they only saw them as objects for sex.

 I think the main reason I have beef with rap music is because of the lyrics. If you really listen carefully to the words that are being said, so much of it is chauvinistic and demeaning to women. Not only that, it’s mostly about violence, sex, and being a tough guy. I can’t relate or connect with that at all and on top of that I don’t respect it.

I’m so sick of this tough guy image, especially in the Hip Hop world. It’s so pointless and stupid. I mean obviously I don’t want a guy bawling all over me all the time. But I can respect a guy that is in touch with his feelings and emotions, and is not afraid to show what he is really feeling. 

Friday, February 20, 2009

"Africa, You Did the Damn Thing" --Mean Girls

When I was 12-years-old, we had a guy from Ghana, Africa move in with us for the summer. It's a long story how this all came to be, but we really didn't know this guy at all. From what we had heard, he was a really nice guy who needed a place to stay before he started school at BYU-Hawaii in the fall. 

My whole family was a little nervous about the whole thing, mostly because we didn't know what to expect from this situation. We weren't sure if we'd like this guy, or get along with him, and most importantly, if we'd feel comfortable with him in our home. When he arrived, he was very shy and timid. He was probably the first true African I had ever seen in my life. 

My parents have always taught my siblings and I to be very accepting of different religions, races, cultures, lifestyles, etc. We were taught to be open-minded and always respect others and their opinions, whether we agreed with them or not. We grew up knowing that everyone is equal and deserves the same opportunities as everybody else. 

Having a black person in our home was not an issue of race. We were eager to get to know this person and welcome him into our family. We knew he would probably be overwhelmed coming to a new country and leaving his family behind, so we really tried to make him feel at home. It was a little difficult at first, because our cultures were so different. But after some time we started to adjust and get to know each other. Pretty soon, Kojo was a member of the family. In fact, everybody in my entire neighborhood was psyched about Kojo. He was super popular at church, people were always offering him rides and inviting him over for dinner. He was such a warm and friendly guy, that you just couldn't help but love him. Even at 12-years-old, I was impressed with the fact that race wasn't an issue when Kojo came to our little community.

The summer came to an end and it was time for Kojo to go to BYU-Hawaii. Everyone was very sad to see him go, especially me, because he had become like a brother to me. To this day, he is still treated like a member of my family. 

Instead of focusing on the negatives aspects of racism in our country, I think it is also important to look at how far we've come. In this particular situation, a different race and culture were not only accepted, but happily embraced. We still have a long way to go, but I feel like we are moving in a positive direction with each generation. 

Friday, February 13, 2009

I'm short, so sue me.


Talking about advertising this week and seeing a few examples of how both men and women are portrayed in the media got me to thinking. If I'm not 5' 9" and and 105 lbs, I should be hitting the gym... hard. I mean, I'm 5' 3 AND 1/2", so what's a girl, nay, a woman to do about that? I can go to the gym, all day, everyday and it's not going to make me any taller. I'm stuck with what I got, so I might as well flaunt it, right? (Just joshin').

Anyway, the point is, we're all different shapes and sizes for a reason. If we were all 5' 9" and super skinny, what fun would that be? It's a shame that the media is so focused on and obsessed with using ONLY beautiful, lean, tall people. It's not realistic and it gets a little boring if you ask me. 

Both my mom and sister are super skinny; I'm talking, it would be really hard for them to gain any weight. But, they don't look too skinny, they look good. I did not inherit the same body type as they have. I have more of an athletic build, which is fine. I don't care. I would totally take being good at sports over a super skinny body. I may not look as lean or whatever as them, but that doesn't mean I have no "skillz". 

I think it's ludicrous how everyone in the media looks so perfect. It makes me want to puke. Let's change it! Change! Change! Change!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Dudes and Dudettes

Talking about throwing out our bra's and women being called girls this week has given me some opinions that I didn't know I had. Not strong ones, but slight jolts of wanting to speak my mind. Not having real strong opinions on these matters, I'm just going to briefly talk about what came to my mind during our discussions this week. 

1. Throwing out our bras. Now I realize it was an expression of women's liberation while challenging the Miss America Pageant. These feminists were disgusted by women walking around in bikinis (or modest one-pieces, what have you), and being judged by how pretty they were. Oh and by how smart and articulate and blah, blah, blah (let's be real right? It's all about looks, period!). Anyway, I think these ladies wanted to shock and awe. Why else would they think to take off their bra's and swing 'em out the window? I'm going to speak for most girl's, nay, women, when I say, some of us need a little support! Ya dig, ladies? I'm all for women's rights and being treated equally to men, but if I'm going to act upon inequality, I'm not going to be taking off my bra. But again, I do get why they did it, to an extent. 

2. Women being angry when men call them girl's. Really? Come on! I'm a 21-year-old girl. I'm a 21-year-old women. I'm a 21-year-old lady. What difference does it make to me!? I don't care, call me a girl, (although I do have an affinity towards lady, it's kinda cute). But seriously, I respect myself and have enough confidence in myself to be okay with not being called a WOMAN all the time. I don't let it bother me. In fact, sometimes it still scares me a little when people call me a woman! I still feel like a 10-year-old girl sometimes.

So anyway, call me crazy, but I'm pretty laid back about the whole thing. 

Friday, January 30, 2009

I do what I want


Talking about gender and roles this week in class got me thinking about my own role as a girl in society. Growing up, I wasn't the typical girl. I didn't like to play with dolls or Barbie's. I didn't like to play "dress up" or wear bows in my hair. Instead I liked to play sports. I liked swords, guns, Ninja Turtles, Legos and GI Joe's. My best friend was a boy. I still played with girls, but I had less in common with them as far as interests go. When it comes to the portrayal of girls in the media, I was not acting according to my gender role.  

I was labeled as a "tom boy," which I really hated. I didn't understand why I would be considered a "tom boy" just because I liked playing sports and playing with Lego's. The only reason I was called this is because I wasn't doing "girly" things. At the time, I didn't know what I was doing was out of the ordinary, according to society. All I knew was that I liked certain things more than others. 

Today, I have broken out of the "tom boy" label and would be considered an "ordinary" girl. But that doesn't mean that I still don't love sports. Gender roles are stupid, enough with this "Tough Guise" crap. I think if a guy wants to wear pink, he should wear pink. And if I want to play swords, then I'll freakin' play swords. 

Friday, January 23, 2009

Congratulations President Barack Obama.

barack-obama-official-small.jpg

This past Tuesday, January 20, 2009 we inaugurated our 44th president into office. But as we all know, it was more than just an inauguration, it was history in the making. I don't know about all of you but I maybe even got goose-bumps as I was watching our FIRST African-American President being sworn in. 

On the night of the election, after Obama had secured his victory, I wrote something so I could remember that night and how I felt. Here is what I wrote:

"I now politics are a touchy subject. Believe me, I know. I live in Provo, Utah of all places. Living in such a conservative state, I try to avoid any talk of politics. But today I feel inclined to say a little something regarding today's election results. 

Today Senator Barack Obama was elected to be President of the United States. Regardless of political parties, it was an historic day for America. Today we elected our first African-American President, a major breakthrough in U.S. history. Although it has been a tumultuous few years, I still feel so proud to be an American. Today was a big stepping stone toward equality. America was able to put race aside and elect the person they felt most suited for the job. When just decades ago people of other races didn't have the right to vote. We have come a long way. I sincerely hope the next four years will be better than the last. "

I'm glad I took the time to sit down that night and write how I felt. It gives me the opportunity to look back, 20 years down the road, and tell my kids what that day meant to me, and America. 

Although I think that President Obama has his work cut out for him in the next four years, I do believe that he will do a great job and bring this country out of our current recession. Change has come to America, that is for sure. 

Friday, January 16, 2009

You Don't Know Me!!

Stereotypes are everywhere. I've stereotyped people. You've stereotyped people (c'mon don't lie). It happens. Sometimes you're right on, but most of the time you're not, or you haven't even scratched the surface of who that person is. 

Yes, someone might be a jock, but that's not the only thing they are. Someone might be a blonde, but that doesn't mean they're not smart too. I might like to play Nintendo but that doesn't mean I'm a nerd. Trying to place someone into one stereotype is like trying to push a square block through a round peg. It totally doesn't work, because it doesn't totally fit. 

I've been stereotyped as a jock because I played sports. I've been stereotyped as stuck-up because I was shy. We all have been placed into one stereotype or another. The thing I try to remember when I begin to stereotype people is that this isn't the only thing to this person. Or what I see is not necessarily what I'll get. I personally like to surprise people. After I know they've put a label on me, as quiet or sporty or whatever, I slowly begin to show them who I really am. I can be funny. I can be sarcastic. I can be a little dramatic. I can talk about and enjoy things outside of sports. Who knew?! 

The great thing about stereotypes is that we can't prevent them from happening, but we can prove them wrong. Not only that we can break out of those stereotypes and show people that we are way too awesome and complex to be summed up in just one word. HOLLA IF YA HEAR ME!!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

#1

"One word, would I smoke dope? Nope!" --Zack Morris

"Roses are red, violets are blue, I'm a schizophrenic, and so am I." --Bob Wiley