Wednesday, 16 September 2015

High Heels and Parking Passes (16/09/2015 - Day 4)


Today was a bit of a lazy day as emphasized by the pajamas pants I'm currently sporting.

I know I've mentioned this several times already, but I absolutely love sociology! It's such an interesting class. The prof makes it hysterical. We were talking about social structures today, and somehow we got on the topic of high heels. He started the discussion by zealously saying into the mic "Why do women wear uncomfortable shoes!?" to which a woman in the crowd of students raised her hand, and promptly quoted "She's the Man". I don't remember the exact quote, so I'll paraphrase - high heels are a man's invention designed to make woman's butts look better and to make it more difficult for them to run away. Genius.

Some other random woman in the crowd made a rebuttal that perhaps woman want to assert their sexiness, or their independence by wearing whatever they want. Perhaps high heels help a woman feel more dominant? Whatever the case, the prof replied with "Yeah, maybe you wake up one day and go f*** it, I'm wearing heels." It certainly made my day.

I'm beginning to get a little concerned about the work load I've taken on, and last night after talking to my parents, and some other extended relatives, I realized that I'm already trying to do too much. Looks like I won't be running for 1st year representative in the student union like I had intended. It's just too much. I'd like to be able to study and have some fun. I'll be working 3 jobs anyways, and I calculated that with the honorarium awarded to the 1st year rep., I'd likely only get 5 dollars an hour for working in student union. Pfft, not worth.

I'm really looking forward to reffing volleyball though. It was difficult to stay focused the other day, what with it being such a long haul at the uni. This weekend there's technical portion I'll be attending. Hopefully I'll be able to blog on those days... they should be LOOOONG days. Thankfully I'll be staying with my grandparents who regularly spoil me. (Thank Grandma/Grandpa, but mostly Grandma because she bakes the goodies! ;) )

There were waffles today at the institute. For those who aren't aware, I attend an institute of religion ran by the LDS church Admittedly it's not my favorite past time. In fact, I strongly dislike it.

The whole thing seems very contrived. We've learned the same things our entire lives, and I'm rather sick of hearing people spout off the same primary answers over and over again. It's quite the contrast coming from a university class room setting to an institute class setting. I don't know, maybe I'm just a bad sport, but when the instructor went over requirement for graduating seminary I kind of scoffed. The attendance and reading assignments are not things I'm interesting in doing. I'm really only there for the parking pass. We finally went over requirements to hold the parking pass, which, of course, were much lower than those for graduation. 50% attendance requirement to hold the parking pass. This is a good thing. Waffles are served every Wednesday, so I guess I'll only go every Wednesday. Heh.

By the time I got home I was not in the mood to do anything. I feel like I should be reading but I just can't make myself do it. I decided that at 7:00pm I'd go over some homework. I need to read some things found in my writing textbook, but I'm not sure how much I'm supposed to read. Was it all of chapter 3? Or just chapter 3 part a? Crap.

I've been told that learning how each prof works is vitally important to my success in uni. I need to discover for myself which classes I can just kind of "coast" and which will be the "nose in the book" classes. So far, management seems to be sort of a breeze, whereas writing and macroeconomics are slightly more difficult.

Meh, I should probably start doing homework. In other news, I'm going coulee exploring tomorrow. Should be a blast.

Until tomorrow,


Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Trolling New Media (15/09/2015 - Day 3)

Hello again!

I was up a little late last night, which really only serves as a detriment to my work out regime. Unfortunately I missed my work out this morning in order to make way for more blissful dreams. Aren't dreams so much better in the early AM anyway? I'd say so. I suppose I still have time to complete my workout before it's dark, but I'm already so horribly exhausted that I doubt I'll have any sort motivation to put on the gym shoes.

I think I found my new favorite class. Management. For some reason it feel so easy. Everything seems to be so self explanatory, but then again, it's highly likely that we're covering more remedial content prior to delving into the deeper, more concerning topics. According to the professor, one of my answers was almost verbatim what the test will say. I guess that's a good thing? Am I becoming a psychic? Time will tell.

I suppose I should clarify my schedule for those that are confused. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I'm at the University for only a few hours in the morning, and Tuesday/Thursday I spend the greater portion of my day there. Two classes Mon/Wed/Fri, three classes Tues/Thurs. Management, Writing, and New Media take place on Tuesday/Thursday, whereas Macroeconomics and Sociology are held every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Overall I really enjoy my schedule, as it's laid out in a way conducive to carpooling with others. This is very important for someone who lives about 30-40 minutes from the university, and I'm swiftly learning that gas is not cheap - even when it's cheap.

Academic writing is certainly an interesting topic. Admittedly, the assigned passage we were given bored me to tears, but I figure it's because of the academic tone. You see, with academic writing the sole goal is to create knowledge, and expand knowledge. The speaker will dive into a topic and stay there for quite some time. The passage we were required to read was on the topic of Global Education, which fortunately for me was something I'd had a bit of experience in. The class was actually quite interesting as we discussed the topic. I felt I was able to provide at least mostly relevant insights and ideas.

University is such an intelligent place. There are so many intelligent people. It's fascinating. I've always been attracted to intelligent conversation, and university brings out the best in me. It's funny though, I seem to be struggling to reequip my dignified vernacular. I'll misuse words and then realize I have immediately upon using them. Trial and error my friends, trial and error.

My last class of the day always has me wiped. I'm always running on fumes by the time I get to that class. Not only is the end of the day for me, but it's also a skip, leap, and a hop away from all the other classes. There are a lot of stairs. I don't know how people can get that "freshmen 15" people are always going on about. There are too many stairs to gain any weight.

New Media has me a little bored. It's unlike my other 4 classes. I really thought New Media would end up being my favorite class, but so far all we do is talk about "abstract" topics and how we need to think creatively. Look, I only took the stinking' class because I wanted to learn how to use Photoshop better. I don't particularly care who invented Photoshop and why. I just need to learn to use it. I shouldn't be overly critical though, the professor is a really nice guy, and seems to genuinely care about our success as New Media artists. We even did a funny little creative exercise where we were given a prompt and assigned to draw whatever came to mind. The prompt was something like "How Photoshop ate my Homework". We were under a 1 minute time constraint before we would suddenly be required to move. We worked on everyone else's drawings, using our own creative juices to add to their masterpieces.

I have a confession: I trolled everyone. I would write stupid memes on everyone's photoshoped stuff, and by the end I was drawing piles of manure on all of them. Somebody drew a picture of a guy with a backwards cap so naturally I attempted to alter it just enough to become the "Scumbag Steve" meme. Hah! Not too shabby.

I've never been more tired, thankfully I have plenty of microwavable single-serve lasagna available for me to gobble up. Still sucks not having anyone in the house though. I can get sort of bored all alone. It's made me realize how I have absolutely no desire to live alone. Family life is the best.

Welp, I best be off - maybe I'll actually get to that workout. Probably not though.

Until tomorrow,


Monday, 14 September 2015

Here, have a wrong answer! (14/09/2015 - Day 2)

As a society we tend to look condescendingly upon those who venture to answer quesetions they probably have no business in answering. Or, in other words, we don't like it when people are wrong. Having grown up with the attitude that being wrong is well, wrong, I think it's fair to say that at some point in time each and every one of us has been embarrassed over producing an incorrect answer.

I actually don't really recall any particular moments in High School where this was true of me, not because I didn't ever answer the teacher's questions, and not because I was always correct, but because it simply doesn't matter to me anymore. I couldn't care less if I say something incorrectly, and I suppose that part of my personality derived from my experiences in Micronesia.

It's important to note that Micronesian people love a good joke. They love laughter, and a laughing people they are. I remember vividly the cultural contrast that became oh so apparent once my sandals hit the beaches of Moen, Chuuk.

I loathed that place. Oh boy did I hate talking to the people - and for good reason! The Chuukese people would not stop making fun of me, and I was deeply insulted, and often took it very personally. Part of it, perhaps, can be attributed to my poor language skills, but much of it - at least I think - was cultural. The Chuukese people laughed at mistakes and then moved on. Like many other languages, there isn't even a word for "awkward" in Chuukese. As I sit here and ponder on that word, I'm not even sure how I'd express it in Chuukese, which is saying something. I may not be a Chuukese linguist by any stretch of the imagination, but I'm certainly not terrible. I can't think of a single word, or even phrase, to describe awkward. I'm sure someone somewhere knows though.

Anyways, I should probably stop rambling and get to the actual story. Today is proving to be a long day. It's only around 3:20pm right now, but it's only going to stretch out longer. I did my "usual" routine (I say "usual" because it's only a habit I've had for the last 2 weeks...) where I wake up at 6:00am, do my Insanity workout, then proceed to hop into the sauna for 15 minutes. Everything was going as planned until I couldn't figure out how to lock my own door (perhaps it was just too early). Anyways, I went to class, which is a bit of a jaunt from where I parked, and that's when it happened. I thought I would try to be intelligent and answer  few of the professor's questions. Unfortunately, I didn't have a clear understanding of opportunity cost, and made myself look like a complete idiot. I raised my hand, completely enthused, thinking that I had the perfect answer to her question. It's also quite unfortunate that I tried to be a bit of a keener and sit front row. Somebody told me that your grade is affected by how close you sit to the prof. The closer you sit, the higher grade. Nice. Well obviously I sat as close as possible. So there I am, the front row sitting keener holding his hand to the heavens. Ugh. Cringe. I'm an idiot.

So it would probably be right of you to assume that I no longer ever want to answer a question in that class ever again, but I'm surprisingly unaffected by this. It honestly doesn't phase me at all after being made fun of constantly by Chuukese people. I suppose if our society were to laugh things off more often, we'd probably learn faster. Never be afraid of being incorrect, because it by our mistakes that we learn. I can certainly attest to that. I'll never forget that opportunity cost can't be attributed to two things at once.

You know, I also did a bit of an experiment today. My family left the house, so I'm home alone focusing on school. My mom was gracious enough to leave some lovely cookies for me. I can't resist cookies, brownies, or pretty much anything else sweet. I have a massive sweet tooth. I really didn't want to consume all of those cookies. I mean, I did but it wasn't a health desire. I opted instead to gather the cookies together into a plastic bag and take them to school to share with my friends! I posted a status on facebook saying that I was outside  a specific room with cookies for those wanting to partake. Funny enough, it didn't even work. I got a fist bump though. Several people saw me in my conspicuous location and decided to chat, but no cookie eaters. Oh well,

May all your days be filled with cookie experiments and horrible class mistakes.

Until tomorrow,


Sunday, 13 September 2015

A Grand Beginning (13/09/2015 - Day 1)

The most conventional way to start anything would be by uttering, writing, or otherwise expressing some sort of greetings. Typically people wave, or say a simple hello, or even just smile at whoever they're trying to greet. I therefore, would like to greet you: hello, and welcome to my blog - netherether - where I tell my stories.

Now is about the time where I explain a bit about myself, or perhaps, a bit about my blog and reasons I find myself writing to you today. You see, I've always been fascinated by stories, anecdotes, tales, legends, fables, or anything that can be spoken or written. People fascinate me, and our stories (at least in my opinion) are what make us human. Each and every one of us has a story we like to share with someone when we first meet them, or maybe we have a story we've told countless times. I don't know about you, but I must have heard my parents' "go-to" stories about a thousand times by now, and yes, the stories are getting a bit dry.

Life is about stories. Life is full of stories, and like I've already mentioned, those stories help define us. It would be a shame if those stories were to never reach an audience, or never shared, explored, and elaborated on. You see, life is about expression, and without a medium to express one's stories, what's the point in living them? We crave social approval, a hat tip, a friendly nod, a chuckle - most people need these things to feel accepted, validated, or even to feel belonging. Simply put, we need to share our stories. The world is our audience.

This all occurred to me several days ago after pondering the last couple years of my life. If we were to rewind back about a year, I'd be on an island, and you'd probably be... errr... somewhere else. I spent a couple years of my life island hopping around Micronesia serving as clergy for my church. I was adamant about keeping a clear, concise, relatively humorous journal where my stories would be stored. I wrote the journal half for myself, half for someone in the future. The life lessons those 6 books contain will hopefully benefit my posterity, or someone else in the future. But what if I hadn't written those books? Where would those memories sit? They'd be gone. Poof. As I reflected on my past self, I realized quite quickly that I'd lost touch with my inner story teller. I made excuses like "life is too mundane now that I'm not living on an island", or "I just don't have the time." Both of which are lies. Life is exactly what you want to to be as our perspectives and attitudes alter our realities.

So what am I trying to say here? Well, life is a book meant to be written, and you're the author. Unfortunately, lots of us get writer's cramp, or writer's block, and we don't write for a while. We allow life to be lived, but never recorded. And while it's important that we experience things and live in the moment, we must also remember the importance of documenting our day to day insanity.

I have stories to tell. There are people I want to describe, places and things I've seen, events I have opinion on, and while I could keep all those stored internally, the world is not served by us making ourselves small. We fear our light, not our darkness.

My dream is that this blog will serve as a place where we can laugh, cry, and feel vicarious embarrassment together. Sure, everyday isn't going to be a Hollywood movie, but everyday will be a unique experience. We're going to try to blog every single day for a year. Yes, it's been done before, but not by me. So here we go...

What is "NetherEther"? Well, if I'm to be honest, it was really hard to pick a name. In fact, I perused several different name generating websites before finally using my own imagination to produce NetherEther.

Nether: Lower in position
Ether: The clear skies, the upper regions of air beyond the clouds.

I think that Nether Ether is "The lower part of heaven". You can quote me on that. This probably sounds overly philosophical, or perhaps even outlandish, but my idea is that a lower part of heaven is reachable, whereas pure ether isn't.

We're here on earth to find our own heaven, to try and obtain an incomparable pure happiness. Plus, if you pronounce "ether" incorrectly, then "NetherEther" flows quite nicely. Ha!

Until tomorrow,