Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Progress: Poor

Stony Brook is turning out to be a little more difficult then I had anticipated. I hate some of my classes which is making it extremely difficult to learn the material. Some of my professors are complete pricks. It's one thing to be pretencions, it's another thing to be a terrible teacher. His class is so disjointed, very annoying

My art class interests me a lot. I really like it even though it is very difficult. At least I understand the information. My fem. spir. class so metaphysical. I don't like metaphysics. I find it a challenge to grasp the material. I hope I at least get a B. My Zionism class is also a little disjointed. Sometimes I get lost in that class, but at least it is really interesting. My Mod. LA class is probably one of the worst classes I have even taken with one of the worst professors I have ever had to deal with. And lastly, my hist 301 class is good, I actually feel like I am learning something about writing.

I have a lot of essays to write and am looking forward to going to Manhattan to start doing my research. I hope to go the the Avry Library at Columbia University, Brooklyn Museum, and the Jewish Center. I have a lot of work to do and I hope to get maybe 85% of it done during Spring Break. I do not have anything else to do, I will be semi-secluded so it will aid me in focusing all my attention on these essays. I really want to do well and this Spring Break is a chance for me to do that. I have never looked so forward to doing work. I guess it will be a taste of what life will be like for me when I begin my graduate research. Being secluded and focused on scholarly work makes me feel like a real scholar.

I am ready to leave my life behind in the name of RESEARCH!

Ascetic life here I come!!!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Confused Thoughts at 1 am

This post will have nothing to do with my university educational experiences. But it does have to do with my everyday educational experience.

Life is a complex and often difficult "thing" to describe and understand. Yet at the same time, it is simple. Since it is so simple, it is complex, for whatever reason. I understand life and people but for some reason it constantly surprises me. I know people are hypocritical (I am as well) yet when someone does something hypocritical, it upsets me. I know people are self-centered yet when I see someone act self-centered, it upsets me. I know people have the capacity to aid others and sympathize yet when i see someone do those things, I am surprised.

I am 21 and my naive beliefs have eluded me. I no longer assume everyone will do the good thing or realize what they do is wrong. Everyday I learn something new, sometimes positive and mostly negative about human nature. I see people everyday complain of their life situation, but if they took one second to think about what they are complaining about, then they might realize its not so bad.

I can't stand people who complain about something and do nothing about it. I can't stand people who complain about something because they are too wrapped up in their own world, failing to realize how bad life could really be. I can't stand people who hold grudges and can't move on. I can't stand people who put others down because they need to boost their ego.

I love a lot of people but can't stand those certain few. I know people are not perfect, I have never expected them to be. But I do expect some common sense and humility. It is as if society is devolving, into less intelligent and less compassionate, and less understanding group. I thought with all the knowledge easily available to the masses, society would learn to relate to others and become understanding. Everyday I am proven wrong yet my naive hope remains. I know there are a lot of bad people out there, but it only takes that one good person to revive my optimism.

My basic human principles which have never failed me:

1. people only help when it is convenient to them
2. everyone is a hypocrite, its just a matter of how hypocritical you are
3. people don't change unless they are introspective and willing to work on themselves
4. everyone wants to be heard, but no one wants to listen
5. working hard doesn't necessarily get you what you want. It's a combination of luck and fate.
6. those who constantly worry get it the worse
7. perfection will never be attained but striving to attain it is admirable
8. jealously produces two outcomes: productivity or self-loathing
9. those who do not interfere in the lives of others will achieve true inner peace
10. everyone has the capacity to love, its a matter of finding the right person or situation to bring it out.

There are exceptions to all my rules but for the most part, my principles stand strong. I understand this post sound cynical or negative but its quite optimistic. Everyone has the capacity to be better its a matter of how hard they are willing to try. I believe everyone is intelligent and once again it depends on how hard they are willing to work to increase or mobilize their intelligence. I believe everyone is born good but life experiences change people. I don't like excuses and I hate egotism.

I sound list a mess but my point is: people will always be messed up but as long as you have inner happiness and peace, what others do, say, and act won't matter. everyday I move closer towards inner peace...i just have a big mouth and am still pretty immature.

If people want to be douchebags or saints, i don't really care. One day I will be successful and what others do or say will not interfere with my goals. I just have to work hard, bite my tounge, and pray that one day things will be better.

Monday, February 16, 2009

It's been over 2 and a half years since my last post. A lot has changed in the life of the girl going to the new UC. First off, I don't attend UCM anymore. I moved to New York a year ago and just started Stony Brook University. I am going to a real university now....

My majors are Global history of the 20th C, Religious Studies, and a minor in either philosophy or Middle Eastern Studies. This school is a lot tougher then I anticipated. The first day was quit overwhelming. I had never seen so many students roaming around and the classes I assumed wound be small, were huge. I definitely miss being pampered at UCM with their small classrooms. I know if I succeed in this school, then I really accomplished something great. At UCM it was easy to succeed because there was not that much competition. New York is in a league of its own and everyday I am enjoying it more and more.

I am learning a language called Pashtu. In the process I am also learning to read and write farsi. I plan on taking Arabic 111 and 112 over the summer. One of my feasible goals in life is to learn at least 7 languages. So Far I have mastered English. I am close to being totally literate in Farsi. Pashtu is new so it'll take a while. When I am finished with Farsi, Pashtu, and Arabic, I will return to working on Spanish and French since I already have a foundation for both. When this is all finished, I want to begin Hindi. We'll see what happens after that.

I am looking forward to Stony Brook and what it has to offer...or what I have to offer. I ready to work hard and hopefully attain the grades I desire. I am taking RLS 366 Fem. Spirituality, HIST 214 modern Latin America, ARH 3something Islamic Art and Architecture, HIST 301 Spanish Inquisition Reading and Writing, and HIST 356 Zionism before 1948. And interesting list of classes, definitely something I would have never had at the UC.

I love challenges and this course load is definitely and challenge.
In 13 weeks I'll find out how it went: if i am truely intellgent or only intelligent when my surroundings are weak.

Friday, May 05, 2006

School of SSHA (Social Sciences, Humanities, and the Arts) Forum

I attended this thing called a "SSHA Forum." A student hosted the forum where about 8 to 10 SSHA professors sat as a panel and discussed any of the audience's concerns. This was such a great idea because there has been a lot of problems with SSHA. There were a lot of questions brought up. Some being why there weren't enough professors, majors, concerns about majors being cut, SSHA splitting up, new classes being offered, problems with administration, etc. It was quite interesting to see what both students and professors had to say about UC Merced.

I did notice the blame game going on. The students were blaming the professors for misleading the students about getting new faculty (one student heard that there were over 9,000 applicants, yet the professors could only choose one or two), then the professors blamed administration for taking to long to approve future professors. They told us that if we has any concerns, to go to administration but as I wrote in my earlier blog, that will be pointless because then they will blame someone else.

There is always someone else to blame, no one wants to take the responsibility for all the mess that is going on. At least Michael Brown admitted that his response to Katrina was poorly executed and he accepted the blame. Not to say that we was qualified or should get off the hook, but at least he took responsibility for his actions or lack there of.

In an ideal world everyone would take responsibility for their actions, no blame game here, no excuses. But in the real world this is definitely not the case. Who the hell would want to take the blame especially if there is someone else to take the blame or when that person has nothing to loose (well other then their dignity). This is why I am an optimistic cynic, I hope for the best but I expect the worst. I hope that people would be mature and take responsibility for their actions, but I expect people to backstab, cheat, and lie.

Monday, May 01, 2006

School is Ending, Damn

There are only two weeks left of school not including one week of finals. It's going to be kind of strange not going to school for 3 months. College is more then just classes as I have expressed in an earlier blog. I'm going to miss this "intellectual" community. I am still going to live in Merced, but it is going to be disheartening to not see the same people everyday. Change is good (just like "greed" -- Wall Street), I love change but it's sometimes comforting to see the same people.

I still plan to be active in the intellectual community as my roommate has expressed interest in doing as well. I don't want to do nothing over the Summer. I want to keep my mind stimulated. I have a list of books I plan to read (knowing myself, I probably won't), a list of things I want to do, people I want to see, events I want to be part of.

Primary elections are coming up and I am working on the Angelines campaign. I went to the Democratic Convention on Saturday as a volunteer to fulfill the 10 hour minimum requirement for me political science class. I had so much fun at the convention. I saw my political science professor who was a delegate for Stanislaus county. I saw him twice that day, once in the beginning, and once before I left.

Yeah there is a lot corruption and scandal in politics and most politicians are corrupt, but I still enjoy politics. I enjoy being part of politics. I was talking with someone during the convention and he offered me a job because he realized how great of a student I am (narcissism rules). We exchanged business cards (my card being a piece of paper with my name and e-mail address) and went on our separate ways.

There was a "no war" protest in front of the convention center. Then there was a Uhaul truck that had signs posted that expressed the view against what happened to Teri Shiavo. I took a lot of pictures that day. I saw a scientology church, that was interesting.....

For my political science class we are supposed to write a 3 page essay on our volunteer work but I decided that a 3-page paper will not suffice. I am in the process of making a creative project which includes lots of pictures and cut outs and stickers and colors. It might seem really childish and unnecessary, but I don't care! I am tired of writing bland essays; I can not fully express myself in an essay. I need glue, color paper, ribbon, and markers. Even though the paper isn't worth as much work as I am going to put in, I will be happy that I did at least one creative assignment this semester. What's wrong with bringing out your 8 year old self in college? Nothing. It should actually be encouraged, but most students don't want to put in the work that goes into a creative project. I must admit, it is a lot easier to write a simple 5 page essay.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

The most underrated class on campus

I had to write an essay today for my Writing class. I had to discuss how I ended up becoming a World Cultures and History major and Philosophy minor. I am a bad writer proven by my earlier blogs, but I think because this new essay is about myself, I might be able to pull off a decent grade.

After a theology reading group discussion for the philosophy club that I help get started, I went outside with my three other friends. I laid down in front of the school just starring at the sky (it was around 9:30 pm). I started thinking to myself, how did I end up with my group of friends, how did I end up with my job, how did I end up laying down in front of the school starring at the sky at 10 o'clock at night? I traced it all to my intro to philosophy class I took last semester. My friends, my job, my interests, my true college experience can all be traced to that class. I am still amazed at how much one class has influenced my life.

Let us start with my position as one of the officers of the Nonexistent Philosophy Club. I aced my philosophy class last semester so I already showed some promise as a philosophy student. Over Winter break, I kept in contact with my philosophy professor about the club and my interest as an officer. At the initial meeting, me and a few other people became the officers of the club (most of them being very much into philosophy). Two other officers (Meg and Mike), my philosophy TA, and myself all met the following day to create the NEPC constitution. Another student (Evan) who excelled in philosophy also joined us in creating the constitution. Little did I know that these people were going to be my future group of friends.

I sort of knew Evan from the World History class last semester. He changed his hair drastically so I didn't recognize him. I had met Meg a few times before at Starbucks. I had only met Michael once at Starbucks on the last day of school with Meg and the TA. Evan already knew Mike because they were roommates. I started hanging out with Meg a lot and then she started going out with Mike. Well, eventually I started hanging out with Evan and we ended up all hanging out together. I have a lot of friends I hang out with at UCM, but these guys are the ones I hang out with most. I even moved in with Meg in her off-campus apartment. I don't really talk to my TA anymore even though he is my TA again this semester for another class. He sort of hates me, but that's a long story. He's the one that actually introduced me to Wikipedia in which I am doing less and less editing with every passing day. The point is, I would have never met these people or decided to move to Merced if it wasn't for the philosophy class/club.

I work as a research assistant for my philosophy professor. I basically read Edmund Husserl and pick out quotes that explain his major concepts. It's quite interesting even though he is a horrific writer. I had only talked to my professor a few times last semester and during Winter break about the club. I also showed a big interest in philosophy and he obviously noticed because a few weeks into the next semester, he offered me a job. He read an article where I was quoted as saying that philosophy is one of the most important classes a student can take; that it is more then a class: it is a tool for life. He e-mailed me when he read the article and asked me to elaborate on why I thought it was such an important class.

I decided to write a not-so-cynical blog today for reasons that are unknown to me. There is still a lot of work that needs to be done to UCM to bring it to the level of the other UCs. But I felt like showing some of the good aspects of the school instead of the negative. There are things about this school that I actually like and appreciate. I am a centrist and for my blog to be purely negative, would make me a hypocrite. I preach centrism and moderacy and I like to practice it as well.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

They're Joking, Right?

Last week my roommate tells me that a friend has told her that UCM has threatened to cut the World Cultures and History major, the only real humanities major there is at this so-called university. Their goal is to become purely a research university and they want to go about this by providing only math and science majors. I'm not sure if they know this but, there is research involved in a humanities major. I know, it might sound totally crazy and absurd and unthinkable, but it is true. When I hear this news, I start to freak out because that is my major they are talking about.

Even though I grumble and gripe about how the school is in disarray and the apathy of the students, I still care about the school and I want it to be the next Berkeley...... well at least the next Riverside. I have been called mellow many of times, but when I heard this news I became irate.

The idea of this school, to me, has become a farce with the administration as scientists who experiment on monkeys and the undergrads as wild baboons The graduates would be ageist, elitist, pretentious baboons and the professors would be the scarce but industrious hippie-vegan dissenters who protest of the experimentation of animals.

I found out a few days ago that WCH is not being cut, it was just some distorted information. Of course I returned to my normal mellow self, but the idea that the major might be cut is still lingering because the school wants to be an exclusive research university. They did do this to the psychology major so WCH will be on the chopping block in perpetuity.