I'm sure by now you have seen the news and everyone post about the murder of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter protests, you may not know what you can do to help. Maybe you are not physically able to make it out to the protests or unable to afford to make a donation right now, but there are still things you can do to help. The easiest and quickest way to still support a cause and help make a difference is to sign a petition. It is important to show your support and help speak out against police brutality and the on going racism in our country, because if you are not helping fix the problem you are part of the problem.All of these are on https://www.change.org/
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Admit it, these gross you out too.
I'll admit it. I'm a germaphobe.
If you got sick as often as I did you'd be one too. Not to sound like a wacko, but going out in public can be gross sometimes. If you're a germaphobe like me these thoughts probably go through your head on a daily basis.
1. Door handles
Truthfully, if I'm about to enter a building at school and there's someone walking in front of me, I'll pick up the pace to make it in the door behind them so I don't have to touch the door handle that thousands of other sick, non-handwashing, nasty college kids have touched today.
2. People coughing and sneezing
I feel like this should be a given and is just respectful, common knowledge that you should sneeze into your arm and not cough on everyone around you. Unfortunately, I'm reminded that I'm wrong when the person next to me coughs a tornado my way, or sneezes into their hands, then asks to borrow my pencil with their mucus-covered paws.
3. Dressing room floors
This one I really don't understand. I could shop, and I mean shop all day. But dirty dressing rooms that haven't been cleaned since the store first opened screams unsanitary and is not a pleasurable shopping experience. It's not very hard to sweep the 3x3 dressing room stall a couple times a week or throw a Lysol wipe around.
4. Really any floor, actually
Speaking of dressing room floors, I'm such a germaphobe I won't put my purse down on the dressing room floor, public bathroom floor, and even in classrooms. Call it snobby, but it grosses me out when people leave their purse around everywhere, then throw it on their bed when they get home.
5. Public toilet seats
This is a huge one. Good thing I was a catcher for 8 years because lord knows I'm not sitting on any toilet seat that's not my own. Squatting has become my best friend, and I'll leave it at that.
6. Unwrapped straws at restaurants
As a server, I'm guilty of contributing to this, but hear me out for a minute. Bartenders and servers run around all shift like a chicken with their head cut off. Most are lucky if they wash their hands 2-3 times a night (except me, as I am hand sanitizing every other second). They are touching money, dirty plates, pens that everyone and their mother has been handling, and so on. Then when it comes time to make your drink they grab an unwrapped straw and place it into the drink that you'll directly drink out of... eww!
7. Wearing shoes in a bedroom
Maybe this one gets to me because my mom always taught us to take our shoes off as soon as we enter someone's house, but I don't understand the reasoning behind wanting to keep shoes on inside a house when you could be comfy?? Remember all those gross floors, and areas I previously mentioned — yup, your shoes are tracking all those heebyjeebies and more into your house and bedroom when you walk around with shoes on inside. And don't get me started with people that sit on couches or beds with shoes on.
I hope this article could relate to my fellow germaphobes, and for those of you who could care less, maybe you'll at least wash your hands more often now?
There's a lot of wisdom shared here.
"Never regret a day of your life: The good days give you happiness, the bad days give you experience, the worst days give you lessons, and the best days give you memories."
1. Have a firm handshake
2. Look people in the eye.
3. Sing in the shower.
4. Own a great stereo system.
5. If in a fight, hit hard and hit first.
6. Keep secrets.
7. Never give up on anybody.
8. Always accept an outstretched hand.
9. Be brave. Even if you're not, pretend to be. No one can tell the difference.
11. Avoid sarcastic remarks.
12. Choose your life's significant other carefully. From this one decision will come 90 percent of all your happiness or misery.
13. Make it a habit to do nice things for people who will never find out.
14. Lend only those books that you never tend to send again.
15. Never deprive someone of hope; it might be all they have.
16. When playing games with children, let them win.
17. Give people a second chance, but not a third.
18. Be romantic.
19. Become the most positive and enthusiastic person you know.
20. Loosen up, Relax. Except for rare life-and-death matters, nothing is as important as it first seems.
21. Don't allow the phone to interrupt important moments. It's there for our convenience, not the caller's.
22. Be a good loser.
23. Be a good winner.
24. Think twice before burdening a friend with a secret.
25. When someone hugs you, let them be the first to let go.
26. Be modest. A lot was accomplished before you were born.
27. Keep it simple.
28. Beware of the person who has nothing to lose.
29. Don't burn bridges. You'll be surprised how many times you have to cross the same river.
30. Live your life so that your obituary can read, No regrets.
31. Be bold and courageous. When you look back on life, you'll regret the things you didn't do more than the ones you did.
32. Never waste an opportunity to tell someone you love them.
33. Remember no one makes it alone. Have a grateful heart and be quick to acknowledge those who helped you.
34. Take charge of your attitude. Don't let someone else choose it for you.
35. Visit friends and relatives when they are in the hospital; even if it is just for a few minutes
36. Begin each day with some of your favorite music.
37. Once in awhile, take the scenic route.
38. Send a lot of Valentine cards. Sign them, "Someone who thinks you're terrific."
39. Answer the phone with enthusiasm and energy in your voice.
40. Keep a notepad and pencil on your bed-side table. Million-dollar ideas sometimes strike at 3 a.m.
41. Show respect for everyone who works for a living, regardless of how trivial their job.
42. Send your loved ones flowers. Think of a reason later.
43. Make someone's day by paying the toll for the person in the car behind you.
44. Become someone's hero.
45. Marry only for love.
46. Count your blessings.
47. Compliment the meal when you're a guest in someone's home.
48. Wave at the children on a school bus.
49. Remember that 80 percent of the success in any job is based on your ability to deal with people.
50. Don't expect life to be fair.
Are you at one of the ages mentioned in Taylor Swift's songs?
Before Taylor Swift's transition from a country/pop sweetheart to a crazed vengeful victim, I was a huge fan of hers. I've been listening to her music for as long as I can remember.
Over the years, as an observant T Swift fan, I've noticed her penchant for mentioning ages in her songs. Maybe she does this so she can look back on these songs and remember how old she was when she had these experiences. Or maybe she does it so her fans have another level to relate to her on. For at least my past seven birthdays, I've checked to see if Taylor Swift mentioned my new age in one of her songs.
Not only does it make me feel closer to her, but it also gives me a song to cling to for a while. By my count, Taylor Swift mentions 13 different ages in her songs.
This is the youngest age mentioned in a Taylor Swift song, which means you probably didn't listen to this song on your third birthday. This age comes from the song The Best Day off of her second album, Fearless. The song chronicles Swift's life at multiple ages and is above all a love letter to her family.
"There is a video I found from back when I was three. You set up a paint set in the kitchen and you're talking to me. It's the age of princesses and pirate ships and the seven dwarfs."
This is another age mentioned in The Best Day. It is part of the song's opening line. Unlike age three, where Swift is seeing something and not actually remembering it, this appears to be a memory from age five with her mother sometime in October.
"I'm five years old, it's getting cold. I've got my big coat on. I hear your laugh, and look up smiling at you. I run and run past the pumpkin patch and the tractor rides. Look now, the sky is gold. I hug your legs and fall asleep on the way home."
This is one of five ages mentioned in Mary's Song (Oh My My My) from Swift's self-titled debut album. This song tells the story of a guy and a girl going from young friends to an old couple, from the perspective of the girl. Swift was inspired to write this song by an elderly couple that lived next door.
"She said, I was 7 and you were 9. I looked at you like the stars that shined in the sky. The pretty lights. And our daddies used to joke about the two of us, growing up and falling in love. And our mommas smiled, and rolled their eyes, and said 'Oh, my my my.'"
This is the second of five ages in Mary's Song. It is mentioned directly after age 7 since it is the age of the guy in the song, who is two years older than the girl.
"She said, I was 7 and you were 9. I looked at you like the stars that shined in the sky. The pretty lights."
This goes back to The Best Day. Swift is no longer five, and she has new problems to deal with. Thankfully, her mom is by her side, like always. I was always able to relate to this part of the song, even before and since I turned 13.
"I'm 13 now and don't know how my friends could be so mean. I come home crying, and you hold me tight, and grab the keys. And we drive and drive until we've found a town far enough away. And we talk and window shop 'til I've forgot all their names."
You don't have to look hard to find this one. In fact, it's the name of the song. This song is also on Swift's Fearless album. It's about her beginning high school. She talks about friendship, love, and dreams. She even mentions the name of her real life best friend at the time, who she is still friends with now. Since it's the name of the song, 15 is mentioned multiple times.
"'Cause when you're fifteen and somebody tells you they love you, you're gonna believe them. And when you're fifteen, feeling like there's nothing to figure out. Well, count to ten, take it in. This is life before you know who you're gonna be. Fifteen."
"When you're fifteen and your first kiss makes your head spin 'round. But in your life you'll do things greater than dating the boy on the football team. But I didn't know it at fifteen."
"When you're fifteen, don't forget to look before you fall. I've found time can heal most anything, and you just might find who you're supposed to be. I didn't who I was supposed to be at fifteen."
We return to Mary's Song for this one. After the two young kids have grown up a little, their perspective on both life and each other changes. This is a turning point in their relationship. Remember, the song is told from the girl's perspective, so she's talking about her age.
"Well, I was sixteen when, suddenly, I wasn't that little girl you used to see. But your eyes still shined like pretty lights. And our daddies used to joke about the two of us. They never believed we'd really fall in love. And our mommas smiled, and rolled their eyes, and said 'Oh, my my my.'"
We jump forward a few albums for this one. The song Starlight on Swift's Red album tells the story of young Ethel and Bobby Kennedy. She saw a picture of Ethel and Bobby as teenagers, which inspired her to write a song about it. She actually played it for Ethel, who enjoyed it.
"I met Bobby on the boardwalk, summer of '45. Picked me up late one night out the window. We were seventeen and crazy, running wild, wild. Can't remember what song it was playing when we walked in. The night we snuck into a yacht club party pretending to be a duchess and a prince."
We skip over age 18 because apparently that's been done too many times for Taylor Swift to bother with it. 19, which happens to be the age of yours truly, is mentioned in Dear John, off of Swift's third album, Speak Now. This song is allegedly about Swift's relationship with John Mayer, which fits the timeline since she was 19 when they dated. I have always loved this song but felt a deeper connection to it when I turned 19.
"Dear John, I see it all now, it was wrong. Don't you think nineteen's too young to be played by your dark, twisted games when I loved you so? I should've known."
Certainly, everyone is familiar with this one. It is Swift's second song titled with an age and a popular anthem for people who are proud to be 22 and aren't afraid to dance like it. This is a song from the Red album, which came out shortly before Swift's 23 birthday.
"I don't know about you, but I'm feeling 22. Everything will be alright if you keep me next to you. You don't know about me, but I'll bet you want to. Everything will be alright if we just keep dancing like we're 22."
This age is mentioned in a song off Swift's most recent album, Reputation. As I subtly mentioned at the beginning, I'm not a fan of Taylor Swift's new music. For the sake of being thorough, though, I scanned Reputation for ages. I found 25 mentioned in the song Dancing With Our Hands Tied.
"I, I loved you in secret. First sight, yeah, we love without reason. Oh, twenty-five years old. Oh, how were you to know?"
We jump ahead quite a bit for this one! Obviously Taylor Swift isn't 87 yet, so she's not speaking from experience. At this point, you can probably guess which song this is from. If you thought Mary's Song, you're correct! This is at the end of the song, where the young friends are finally an old couple. The future tense implies that the couple this song is based on aren't quite that old. However, they intend on staying together until they are.
"I'll be 87, you'll be 89. I'll still look at you like the stars that shine in the sky. Oh my, my, my."
I could have combined 7 and 9, and 87 and 89 since they're so close together, but I wanted to make a point. If you've been paying attention to the numbers before the ages, you'll notice that this is the 13th age mentioned in a Taylor Swift song. If you're a Taylor Swift fan, you probably already know what that means. If not, let me enlighten you. 13 is Swift's lucky number. She was born on December 13 and turned 13 on Friday the 13. The number 13 is also connected to her music. Some of her songs have 13-second intros. Some of her albums have 13 songs. Some songs peaked at #13 on the Billboard Hot 100.
That makes 13 ages referenced in all. Could that fact that Taylor Swift mentions 13 different ages in her music be a coincidence? It could, but it seems unlikely. When it comes to Taylor Swift, there are hardly any coincidences. Since she has been using ages in songs since her first album, it is likely she will mention more on subsequent albums. However, she has never gone less than four years in-between albums, so this 13 reference will stick around for quite some time.
Ah, Paris! The art! The museums! The cheese!! As Charles de Gaulle said, "France cannot be France without greatness." Not to mention it is absolutely gorgeous. I'll show you.
The Medici Fountain, Paris, France
Saint Sulpice, Paris, France
Notre Dame, Paris, France
Musee D'Orsay, Paris, France
A georgeous room in the Musee D'Orsay.
For those who have always felt a little out of place.
Throughout my entire young adult life, I have never truly felt like I could connect with most people my age. Parents and teachers have said things like: "you're such an old soul" or "you're wise beyond your years," and all I know is that I don't seem to fit into my generation. Recently, there has been a lot of controversy as to whether or not my generation is lazy and unappreciative. While I do not think this is totally true, I do have a problem with the way many people my age present themselves in society. This being said, I am not sure if I am more upset with my generation or the group of people I have been forced to be associated with during this time of adolescence; for if things change when we enter the next phase of life, I might feel differently about "my generation".
But I am currently stuck in a vortex that invites people who are always busy with something and don't take the time to appreciate the little things. People who take the easy way out and don't know how to open up and communicate effectively. People who are obsessed with being "young and wild and free" with no regard to the consequences of their choices. People who are so stuck in their beliefs that they refuse to admit when they're wrong. People who choose to be kind to a select few, leaving others to wonder why they are not worthy of your time. With every sparkle of pixie dust I can find and with every feather in my sensitive soul, I try really hard to not be one of these people. And the following reasons explain why:
1. You prefer talking to older people rather than people your own age.
2. Your core is crafted out of handwork and effort.
You have been raised to persevere and see things through; you don't take the easy way out. Even if you fail or things don't happen the way you hoped they would, you feel better knowing you did everything you can to try and make it happen.
3. You still believe in chivalry and romance.
There will never be a day where you don't.
4. You don't need to party to have fun.
You don't see the point in losing control of your mind and body which can easily lead to potentially dangerous situations. Watching the sunset and having a movie marathon with some friends sounds good to me.
5. You have very few "go-to" people in your life.
You have discovered the concept of: quality over quantity. You've never had a million friends because you're perfectly content with the few people you know will always have your back. Even thought I'm in college, I'm lucky that my go-to person back home lives 30 seconds away from me. Missing you, Aidan.
6. You always see the other side of things.
You involuntarily do this because you naturally see the pros and cons of everything in life. You might lean closer to one side but you can always understand the other perspective. You would be surprised how many people do not know how to (or choose not to) do this.
7. You forgive easily and try to make things work.
You don't understand couples that always break up and make up, or the friendships that end over silly things. Life is short and 99% of the time, it is always worth it to forgive and move on.
8. Your conscience is your best friend.
You literally do not make any decisions in life without thinking it all the way through, considering everything that could happen as a result of your actions. Sometimes you might wish you could be a little more spontaneous but at least you know you're making good choices!
9. You like to spend time alone.
It's always a healthy choice to spend a little time alone. You like yourself, right? Yeah, me too.
10. You don't obsess over your eyebrows.
You will just never understand.
11. You like conversations that dig down deep.
Nothing is better than being able to learn all about someone's hopes, dreams, and thoughts about the universe.
12. You are kind to strangers.
Genuinely nice people are friendly at all times. My mama taught me that you'll never know what happens in a person's life behind closed doors. Showing kindness to a stranger can make all the difference.
1. Brittany Morgan, National Writer's Society
2. Radhi, SUNY Stony Brook
3. Kristen Haddox, Penn State University
4. Jennifer Kustanovich, SUNY Stony Brook
5. Clare Regelbrugge, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign