Wednesday, September 26, 2007

News around town

There is a girl outside my dorm window playing her trumpet...its midnight, but I like the music. It makes me feel like I'm in New York City, circa summer 1989, sitting on a stoop, steam rising from a manhole, In my dreams, I'm still young, obsessed with New Kids on the Block and my whole future is ahead of me. Alas, that is not the reality....but its nice to dive into that world for a bit (smile).

As a University student, I have been fascinated with the recent furor over the Iranian president speaking at Columbia - how interesting. Universities are great places to exchange ideas, in a civilized manor. This dilemma rages even at VCU which is currently gripping with the idea of inviting very conservative speakers, speakers with hate messages. While I don't particularly condone or like their views, what is the point of being an insititute of higher learning if we don't actively engage in lively debate? It would certainly be insightful to see why these people think like they do and perhaps dissect them in order to ascertain how to combat such vicious thoughts.

Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's speech at Columbia was....enlightening. I giggled when he said, "there are no homosexuals in Iran," really at such a ridiculous statement what else can be done but laugh? However his savoe on pointing at America's double standards for behavior in the Middle East was correct. He did come out of the situation looking like the bigger man than the Columbia president, whose introduction was just plain rude! I do think that Ahmadinjad's speech, coupled with other actions does point out an interesting situation; I get the impression that he really does want to open dialogue with the US. I don't know to what extent, but certainly what harm could it do America? I'm reminded of the expression, we can catch more bee's with honey than vinegar. We've given democracy through violence an opportunity (Iraq war), how about giving freedom via peace a chance?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Don't starve for nothing!

Dealing with a ton of things at school right now, financial aid still a bit of a mess, though slowly cleaning that up. My study abroad for next semester has some issues and to top that off, for some reason my professors this term are really working us (sheesh). It is because of these factors, my online presence has been limited to research work and checking email.

Ramadan Mubarak - the month of fasting has begun!

The guy who gave last week's Friday sermon (the first holy day sermon of the holy month) had a good phrase that I'm applying for this Ramadan, "don't starve for nothing." The point being that one can deny oneself food and water but if we don't change our behaviors, such as gossiping or quick to lose patience, all of the immaterial sacrifices of Ramadan mean nothing (hence you starved for nothing). A key point of the fast is to cleanse your soul, to purify, to reconnect to God and the tenets He has laid out for us humans to live by. The fasting is simply a means of putting structure/action/ almost something quantative to these more etheral objectives.

For me this means not losing my temper at stupid people, being unfriendly to mean people (instead working to kill with kindness), trying to have a modicum of patience (anyone who knows me, knows I'm the queen of impatience). With 14 hours of sunlight in the day, I strive not "starve for nothing."

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


Two step-mom's, two very different stories:

The first one became a step-mom through default, her boyfriend had an adorable one year old that she fell in love with. His mum had checked out of the picture, a drug addict going through numerous rehab's, the father had won custody easily. This step mom has been with the child for a year now, she feeds him, bathes him, rocks him to sleep, shops for him, sings along with Elmo with him, even cuts his hair. The little boy, who is now two has taken to calling her mom, just as he learns to talk - she has his pic on her cell phone.

The second step-mom also became a step-mom through her default, her boyfriend/lover had custody of his 17 month old son, the biological mum being locked up in a mental ward. This step-mom saw the child as a threat to her relationship with the father. On a number of occasions she would beat the child or have the father do it. Other times she would leave the child in the house alone, while she went shopping. The child was taken to foster care but than returned to his father, who, along with the step-mom (who now had a child of her own), continued to abuse the baby, burning and cutting him. On the 6th of September, the baby died.

The first step mom is my hair stylist, a 23-year old. To hear her talk about her step son is to know someone who really has compassion, her station is covered with pic's of the baby, a baby that is not her's, that links her boyfriend to someone else (baby momma), but that doesn't matter to her, its so amazing! I heard about the second step-mom on the BBC, this happened in London and I'm shocked by the gruesome tale. I guess I simply can't wrap my head around how different these two women are...what made one so caring and the other so evil?

My hair stylist is not particularly religious but I think there is a very special place in heaven for her. The second woman, a purported Muslim would probably claim some religiosity...I hope there is a special place in hell for her.

Thursday, September 06, 2007


Ok, they are not the best jokes (except Simpson's quotes) but I still laughed...

I know I'm not going to understand women. I'll never understand how you can take boiling hot wax, pour it onto your upper thigh, rip the hair out by the root, and still be afraid of a spider.

A couple drove down a country road for several miles, not saying a word. An earlier discussion had led to an argument and neither of them wanted to concede their position. As they passed a barnyard of mules, goats, and pigs, the husband asked sarcastically, 'Relatives of yours?' 'Yep,' the wife replied, 'in-laws.'

Homer: I'm not a bad guy! I work hard, and I love my kids. So why should I spend half my Sunday hearing about how I'm going to Hell?

Bart: I can't stand to see you so upset, Lis, unless it's from a rubber spider down your dress - Hmm, that gives me an idea note for later: put rubber spider down Lisa's dress.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

One Week into School

Thanks for everyone's kind thoughts on my past crush, you guys are awesome!

I have to update everyone on my scholarship I got back to school last week, to find the scholarship was not showing up on my financial aid statements. I contacted the School of Business, per the Financial Aid Office's instructions. The Business Dean informs me that I did win a scholarship, only this is for $375, not my full fall tuition.

"What?!" I respond..."the letter I received over the summer indicated that my full tuition was being covered."

Here is the update: Apparently over the summer I dropped down in class ranking (what from number 1 to number 3?) which would make me ineligable for the scholarship, but because the school of Business's mistake they are going to give me the scholarship...very grungingly did the Dean tell me this.

Boy its been a while since I was made to feel so stupid (all because I got one "B", the Dean pointed out that this one grade, in one class, made me less than smart enough to get the scholarship, never you mind I worked my ass off in every class including that one, that I contribute to the school by being active in the program/activities and if they bothered to talk to my undergrad college they would see I am very proud and generous alum).

Of course now I have to work even harder this semester to prove to the Dean's office that this "dumbass" deserves this scholarship.

Nothing makes me madder than when people treat me like I'm stupid...I may talk about television and the latest Hollywood gossip, but that doesn't mean I'm not intelligent, I just don't feel the need to pontificate at every opportunity or only discuss only "serious" issues, this doesn't make you smarter than just makes you more of an ass.

Anywho...wish me luck, its straight A's this semester or bust!