I am drinking an iced tea as it snows outside. But I am not evolving quickly enough!
Before I came to HWS I never had to imagine, experience, or even consider that water could fall from the sky besides its liquid form.
Here is the Oxford dictionary definition of snow:
Snow (noun): Atmospheric water vapour frozen into ice crystals and falling in light white flakes or lying on the ground as a white layer.
This word can be verb and it has a phrasal verb form. The phonetic form of snow is /snəʊ/.
Here is the William Samayoyo definition of snow:
Snow (noun): Frozen water that deathdropped out of the sky and is personally victimizing William Samayoa. It collects on people's bodies, like in their in hair, undoing all the hairspray and work put in. Once it melts it makes you smell like a wet dog, and not even Paco Rabanne's cologne Invictus can mask this scent. It exists because of some property of science that I was too lazy to read about in my geoscience homework. This word can be a verb and phrasal verb. The phonetic form of snow is /IHATEMYLIFEIMCOLDPLEASEGETMEABLANKETANDCOCO/.
So why am I wearing my scienftic cap today? I am discussing the phenomena of snow because it's something I'm still trying to understand myself. I have the basic idea of tolerating this atmospheric attack down; wear layers, don't throw a picnic outside, and consider if you really need to go to Kappa tonight (the answer is ALWAYS).
My first year I remember waking up late and sprinting to class fully adorned in my winter gear. I lunged into class with my gloves on, bean boots tightly laced, and my cardigan and scarf color coordinated. I was shook, extremely shook, when I saw my peers in shorts, T shirts, and in Birkenstocks. My professor was dressed like it was a typical spring day, this was fall semester, and he said to the class, "Looks like winter came early for Will." In that moment I was so embarrassed that I broke a sweat and began to undo the armor I had for the outside.
When I had awoken I remember checking my weather app and it said the high was 60 degrees. It made sense to me to bundle up. In L.A. our winters are 60 degrees.
This was me minutes after I landed in Rochester, NY for my spring semester at HWS. This was my first time in snow, and of course I had to document it. May this be the start of my career in front of the camera.
I wrote this because I ran into a friend and he said, "Will what you doing tonight?" My response was, "Stay in, it's way too cold to go outside!"
He laughed and preceded to say, "You're so funny! See you out tonight!"
Even now, people still make jokes about my whining, but I really mean it! My friends, and peers, think that I am never serious. I understand that my demeanor is very light and I perpetually crack jokes. But one thing that is not a laughing matter, the winters on the east coast.
So I want to share a list with you about things I recommend on doing when the weather is being petty (like it is today):
I don't believe that you need to go out every weekend to enjoy college. I came to college in order to find out who I am, and while we need people to provide us with experiences, we also need alone time to process it.
What ever you do tonight, give it your all (and make sure to HMU)!
- Will out
Earlier this week, the popular streaming service Hulu released the first trailer for its upcoming adaptation of the 1985 novel by Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale. I haven't come across many familiar with Atwood's works, she is one of my favorite writers, but hopefully this new series interests more people to find her work. I am glad to see this novel being adapted for a new generation in a medium that's more accessible to everyone. The only troubling part of this adaptation is that it comes in a period where it seems too fitting.
Let me offer a brief synopsis of this novel, and bear with me because I read it in high school so my memory may be fuzzy. However, if this half baked literary review interests you I recommend reading the whole book since it is a great read!
The novel follows Offred, a handmaid, in the Republic of Gilead that is the former United States of America. The lack of enviormental concioussness by Americans lead to pollution of water, and because it was ingested, most men are impotent and many women's ovaries have been disentigrated. When crisis began to hit, a Christian group takes over and forms this Republic, turning the U.S. into a totalitarian and theocratic state. The few women who remain fertile are forced to become handmaids. They are stripped away from their families, they lose their names, and most significantly they lose the rights to their body. An issue that is currently in discussion.
Handmaids have one reason to live, to give birth. If they cannot deliver a child, or engage in sex for pleasure, consider abortion, they are killed. Handmaids are given to wealthy famalies to bear children before they move onto the next assigment. As you can imagine this book carries many biblical refrences to symbols of fertility, such as the handmaids wearing red head to toe. This book is genius because it carries multiple critiques in a fascinating story. It offers a feminist critique on goverments dictating what a woman's body can and cannot do. It critiques capitalism and its lack of concern over the enviorment. And it also critiques a system with a leader who maintains his goverment through hateful rhetoric and putting blame on the "other."
Offred is dedicated to escaping Gilead and fleeing north to Canada where she may be free, but along the way she endures hardships like emotional abuse, witnessing death, and even rape. In this world, all women are seen as mere bags of meat for the satisfaction of men. Anyone who cannot reproduce and further the economy, for example members of the LGBT+ community, are hung publicly. The victims wear sheets over their face, and as I wrote in my senior thesis, I believe this blankness alludes to how anyone can be a victim. This novel was written around the time when birth control first became part of the national conversation, and now that the focus has shipped to abortion, this novel continues to portray a world where woman do not have the right to decide on their bodies.
As I wrote in my senior thesis where I focused on Atwood, she is a writer that has greatly shaped the genre of Ontario Gothic. Like A Handmaid's Tale, the majority of her novel follow a female protagonist and she is always fighting. Her novels point to how in our society, any person who does not fall under the social construction of manliness is at a disadvantage. Females, trans people, a-gender people, must make space in a society that has pushed them into a corner.
In each novel above, Atwood's women spend the novel exploring what it is to be woman. Each novel is set in a different setting and time, but commen themes string their journeys. Each of these women understand that sex is power and so they use their bodies to trick and decieve their oppressors. Yet, they still find themselves unable to live happily. Alias Grace is based on the femme fatale Grace Marks who is accused of killing her master and the novel follows one man trying to uncover the truth. Cat's Eye is about a woman reflecting on how her identity was shaped by the women and men around her, and how art served as her salvation. The Blind Assasin is by far my favorite read. This lengthy novel follows a young socilate and her tragedy of becoming a mother without ever having a steady mother figure in her life, as well as the sadness she endures being forced into marriage for wealth rather than love. This novel focuses on the idea of how our society expects women to serve her family and make this their destiny.
Each of these novels also interogates the fact that women are expected to be mother's, even when they may not be ready or desire to be one. In The Blind Assasin, Iris, our protaginist, becomes a young mother. Iris' mother died when she was young, and unsure of how to be a mother, she is not surprised by the the suicide of her daughter. When she tries for years to approach her grandaughter, she fears this fate will come full circle.
I admit that sometimes to save time I seek the TV show or movie based on a book. But in our current period where knowledge for social consciousness is often ignored for dumb badgering and glossy tabloids, I encourage you to consider reading one of Atwood's works. With Hulu adapting Atwood's classic I hope that more people follow the trend and find the original source material.
Atwood has described herself as not necessarily being a feminist, but there is no doubt that her novel's carry feminist themes. These novels explore the role of sex and gender in the construction of identity, it explores the problem of a government shaped by an elite/privileged group (whether by gender, class race) and it explores the necessity to care for our environment.
I am thinking of more book posts, but for now thank you and happy readings!
When ever I come home to Los Angeles I notice change. The city's edifices do not shift, they can't, but each time the enviorment is different. Shops close, business open, musuems acquire art exhibits, and my friends and family continue growing.
Being away does suck, but the positive spin I place on my story is that I'm more eager to adventure when I return. Being in Upstate New York has served as a catalyst for my pride in being an Angel native. When I'm asked, "Wow how did you come hear?" I respond with my script about winning the Posse scholarship. Every time I'm smiling more as I recognize that L.A. is not a dream but my reality. Each break, I make a bucket list inspired by Buzzfeed videos and listicles about the top tourist attractions in SoCal. One of my favorite aspects about living in California is the sheer volume of areas to explore. This break is short, only 3 weeks, and so I've tried to cross off a few more points off from my list.
I am thankful for my friend Rachel, pictured in the right, and her nomadic spirit. She is our group's navigator and every time we hop in the car we end up somewhere new. On Tuesday, I asked her to take me wherever she liked. She texted back with, 'Be ready at 10 we'll take the train.' I had to haul ass when I awoke to see the crimson digits on my table display 9:55. We missed the train, but we managed to ger breakfast. After an hour ride we arrived in the Los Angeles Arts District.
The caffe is called Urth Cafe, and as you can imagine I had never been here before. Besides the food looking for Instagram it was delicious. It was organic, locally grown, and all those other labels west coasters slap onto our food to make us look boougie. After the last slice we went looking for the famous wings.
These are wings painted by Colette Miller as part of her Global Wings Project, created to "remind humanity that we are Angels on this Earth." The wings are painted throughout SoCal and Miller has gone as far as to paint some abroad.
We found 3 sets of wings and each discovery ingnited a photoshoot. We continued to stroll throughout the streets discovering art that intrigued and inspired.
The night ended with Rachel, Adriana, and I watching La La Land and crying.
I think the biggest gem found this day is the fact that L.A. is the city where dozens come to dream. Unlike Breakfast at Tiffany's though the ending is not a happy one. La La Land ends with the starcrossed lovers in seperate lanes, not kissing in the rain. You don't come to L.A. for love, you come here to fight.