Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Lace it up

If this doesn't get my butt to the gym, I don't know what will.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

It's not polite to stare. But it happens.

As I was reading Catherine's blog about watching people I began to think of common situations when I find myself people watching.


Whether you're sitting amongst sleepy co-eds heading to class on a campus bus or seated shotgun on a long road trip, nothing passes the time faster than examining the strangers you come across.

The interaction on buses, metros, elevators, or anything that forces people to be close yet remain quietly individual spawns such interesting behavior.

Everything that ordinarily wouldn't mean anything suddenly speaks volumes. Someone's outfit screams their personality. A smile could mean interest. A seat selection could be strategic.

But, wait.

That person probably didn't think twice before putting those shoes on. That smile was actually a reaction to a funny podcast. I don't consciously want to sit next to you, but there's no where else to sit.

Being in a highly visually-stimulating environment, limited to your inner thoughts, tends to make typical thoughts more processed. Images are more thought about, things more exaggerated.

Not only riders more perceptive, but unique relationships are formed.

Only these 30 some people are riding this bus at this moment. If we were to get into an accident, we'd help each other. If something funny were to happen, we'd probably all laugh. We might even look to our neighbor and acknowledge the humor of the moment together. You don't know anyone, but for whatever reason, being reserved to this moving living room of a bus, you share a connection, a common experience.

It only lasts 10 minutes. And once the end spot is approached, the brakes engaged and doors opened, we all get up from our seats, gather our belongings and shuffle off the bus, and off to our destinations.

Unlike other relationships, this is one that I don't miss. I'm not sad to leave the people I shared my ride to class with. It's just the way it goes. The only thing I'll probably miss is that cute boy or the really cool combination of colors that girl wore in her outfit -- the group I ride home with might not be as interesting.

Monday, November 5, 2007

ultimate frisbee soundslide

Until I can figure out how to embed the soundslide into this blog, you'll just have to download, upzip and open the index file to view my soundslide on Syracuse University's men's ultimate frisbee club team Scooby Doom.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Reality Check

It was in that second, that visual, that I felt like I was the closest I had ever been to knowing what it had been like for Justin when he was gunned down in Afghanistan.

The fear, the pride, the courage: all bottled up in this 18-year-old body, willingly placed in a foreign hotbed of trouble, with the knowledge that he might see his last sight, breathe his last breath, feel his last heartbeat.

As I sat in the theater watching Lion of Lambs, tears streamed down my face. The reality of this war overwhelmed me once again, much like in early June when I got a phone call at 2 a.m. asking if I had heard about Justin. He had been killed in Afghanistan. He had been shipped out from Fort Drum just 4 months earlier.

Today in Media & Politics we were talking about how our age group, 18-25, have had the lowest voter turnout to date. We tried to in point the reasons for this trend and ways to get young people involved.

A lot of people said that candidates do not appeal to the younger generation, preoccupied with the storyline of Gossip Girl and the latest celebrity break-up.

"People speculated that Stephen Colbert could be the break through to bringing younger people into politics, getting them interested," my professor said.

But why must we make a mockery of the democratic process and politics in general (Colbert attempted to get on the democrat's primary ballot in South Carolina, for those who haven't read the news) to get young people voting?

"Issues don't matter to kids our age. We're not in the real world yet, so they don't affect us," one student said.

It's true; I might not be directly affected by a large portion of public policy, but there's one issue that affects everyone-- the war in Iraq.

It shouldn't take a draft to light a fire under our generation. Our peers are being shipped out: someone's brother or sister, someone's best friend since childhood, someone's love of their life.

Is it that inconvenient to read a newspaper, to care about our government or to be informed, while other people our age are enduring in boot camps and leaving loved ones and home to go half-way around the world to a completely different and unwelcoming environment?

I wish I was as courageous as Justin to voluntarily go to war.

But I wish just as much that we wouldn't have had to send Justin off in the first place.

Every vote counts.

In Loving Memory of Justin Davis, 1987 - 2006.