Keeping Your Friends Close But Your Enemies Closer

Keeping Your Friends Close But Your Enemies Closer

The struggle of a girl with selachophobia through Shark Week. I literally cried picking this cover photo.
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This past week, Discovery Channel celebrated its 29th annual shark devoted event — Shark Week. This week was filled with interesting scientific studies on all types of sharks, action packed videos of the predators in action, and even a number of compelling shark attack survivor stories. Since I can remember, I’ve had an extremely irrational fear of sharks. When I was younger, I feared the chance of them appearing in the swimming pool, the bathtub and even sometimes from underneath my bed. To this day, this fear lives on and I find myself closing my eyes during previews of movies like "The Shallows," steering clear of anything "Jaws" related, and not traveling further than ankle deep into the ocean.

About four years ago, the crazy fear got crazier when I decided to sit down and face Shark Week. Several times I screamed, shuddered, and looked away but all in all I survived. It’s then I realized that to successfully “fight” your enemy, you must first know and understand him. So here I am years later still watching and intensely learning about my dear nemesis, the shark. Here below you’ll find a list of the many emotions my poor heart endures throughout the duration of this week:

When they show the largest shark ever filmed:

I mean that sucker was like over 20 feet long.

Through the entire episode on how violent shark mating is:

Some of those videos are really disturbing, and I feel like female sharks need some kind of feminism activist group.

Every time they mentioned the need for shark conservation and how much more often we attack them than they attack us:

The harm pollution and such does to our oceans is disturbing. You should look it up sometime.

When they had the episode on the frequency of sharks moving into shallow water:


And y’all all thought I was crazy for not going in the water.

When I was reminded that bull sharks can swim up river; and then reminded there is a chance of crocodiles or alligators being there the entire time anyway:

How the heck am I going to survive on this earth, like it’s literally 70 percent water and there are these sharped-tooth creatures everywhere.

Every time “The Shallows” commercial aired:

I really cannot handle that movie even if Blake Lively kills it.

When they give tips to avoid shark attacks and I notice that people ignore them regularly:

So maybe I take shark attack prevention too seriously.

When they aired one of the final episodes about sharks coming onto shore for pray:

Really? No. I can’t do it. No beach is safe.

All jokes aside, sharks really are neat (terrifying) creatures and Shark Week does a great job of embracing the beauty and wonder of these sea animals. Even though I’m more likely to be struck by lightning than attacked by a shark, my fear still remains. Yet, thanks to Shark Week for educating me on the behaviors of my most feared competitor, I’m ready to fight if need be.

Cover Image Credit: http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/03575/shark_3575581b.jpg

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17 Empowering Bible Verses For Women

You go, girl.
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We all have those days where we let the negative thoughts that we're "not good enough," "not pretty enough" or "not smart enough" invade our minds. It's easy to lose hope in these situations and to feel like it would be easier to just give up. However, the Bible reminds us that these things that we tell ourselves are not true and it gives us the affirmations that we need. Let these verses give you the power and motivation that you're lacking.

1. Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed with strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future."

2. Psalm 46:5

"God is within her, she will not fall."

3. Luke 1:45

"Blessed is she who believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her."

4. Proverbs 31:17

"She is energetic and strong, a hard worker."

5. Psalm 28:7

"The Lord is my strength and my shield."

6. Proverbs 11:16

"A gracious woman gains respect, but ruthless men gain only wealth."

7. Joshua 1:9

"Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."

8. Proverbs 31:30

"Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised."

9. 1 Corinthians 15:10

"By the grace of God, I am what I am."

10. Proverbs 31:26

"When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness."

11. Psalm 139:14

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made."

12. 1 Peter 3:3-4

"Don't be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God."

13. Colossians 2:10

"And in Christ you have been brought to fullness."

14. 2 Timothy 1:7

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline."

15. Jeremiah 29:11

"'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord. 'They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.'"

16. Exodus 14:14

"The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm."

17. Song of Songs 4:7

"You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way."

Next time you're feeling discouraged or weak, come back to these verses and use them to give you the strength and power that you need to conquer your battles.

Cover Image Credit: Julia Waterbury

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'Bird Box': Movie Vs. Book

The differences are more vast than you think.

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I read "Bird Box" about three years ago when my English teacher recommend it to me. Ever since then, it has been my favorite book. When I saw that Netflix was making it into a movie, I was overwhelmed with excitement. I watched "Bird Box" and was only slightly disappointed. There were two scenes that I absolutely needed to see but they never appeared, Malorie and Victor in the bar and actual birds raining down on Malorie and the children in the boat. Since movies and the books they are based on are always different, I decided to write about the biggest differences that I noticed. Some of which, include a lot of gore.

1. Microphones

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Tom had the idea to use microphones with an amp before he thought of the birds in a box. He actually found the birds in a box when he went on a supply run around the block they were living on. Malorie thought of his idea after the children were born and took Cheryl's car to get them. Ever since that day in the book, she had them set up so everything outside was amplified. This, of course, was when the birds were no longer there.

2. Tom

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Tom had a wife and a little girl named Robin. Robin was in eighth grade and was really smart for her age but she looked outside and Tom had found her in the bathtub with her wrists slit. He buried her in the backyard and later found George's house, which he, Don, and George resided and thought of solutions to this problem which was originally called the "Russia Report". George had the idea of looking at them indirectly which he later found out was not a solution at all. In the movie, Tom had survived with Malorie and the children but in the book, he died when all of the other housemates died. Leaving Malorie to fend for herself and the children.

3. Tom and Malorie

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The movie shows Tom and Malorie in a relationship. But the book suggests that Malorie is the only one who has feelings for Tom. She longs for him, his voice, and his presence. But Tom is more concerned with being the leader of the house, although he has a kind tone towards Malorie.

4. Gore

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The book has way more gore than the movie, which is completely understandable why it didn't make the cut. There are scenes of the housemates blindly stepping on and running over dead bodies, finding dead bodies of families, and even found someone, dead, who had scooped their eyes out into a bowl on the table. The book also tells about news reports like a pair of old-lady twins who where biting people's faces off at a hospital that were shot by the police. Plus, the death scenes in the book were different from the movie, most likely because they are impossible and needed to been more real than what they were.

5. Deaths

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Shannon: She did not flip a car with a very pregnant Malorie in the passenger seat. Her and Malorie had been living in a house with blankets over the windows and while Malorie was downstairs watching the news, she called for Shannon who did not give a response. She walked upstairs to find Shannon had stabbed herself in the chest with a pair of scissors.

George: Although George did die watching the recording of the creatures, he did not bang his head on the floor. Instead, he tore his body through the rope that tied him to the chair and the book describes it as flesh ribbons.

The Housemates: All except Malorie died when Don removed the blankets from the windows and opened the doors.

Olympia: Although she did jump out of the attic window after giving birth, in the book, she hangs herself by her umbilical cord that she chewed off.

6. Gary

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The pictures that can be seen spread across the table are actually just notes in the book. Malorie steals Gary's briefcase that he brought with him and finds it. It had his ideas written in it stating that he believed people's reactions to the creatures were psychosomatic meaning that the insanity that follows from looking at them aren't the creatures but the result of dramatic people looking at them. He doesn't believe that the creatures make people go insane, they choose to go insane. The housemates cast him out after Malorie tells them about the journal but Don sneaked him to the cellar where he lived for about seven weeks, in solitude, feeding Don his philosophies. It was Don who originally pulled the blankets down and opened the doors, not Gary. However, Gary did enable this behavior.

7. Victor

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If you've read the book, this is probably the saddest part of it all. Victor is Jules' border collie who was locked in the cellar when the blankets were torn down. He survived with Malorie and went to the bar with her to fetch the microphones as her seeing eye dog. Except he saw a creature and it was then that Malorie knew animals were not immune. She listened as he snapped at the air and chewed off his leg. She had to leave him, she didn't have a choice.

8. Jane Tucker School For the Blind

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The safe haven Malorie and the children go to in the end, is a school for the blind. However, a lot of the residents had gouged their eyes out because it was the ultimate protection. Because they do not resort to this method, Malorie stays.

9. Supply Runs

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There were two supply runs that only consisted of Tom and Jules, not everyone. They found two huskies as seeing eye dogs and the bird box on the first run and the second run is when they went to the grocery store.

10. The Man on The River

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I think the purpose of this man is simply to make Malorie uneasy. He originally had a motorized boat and tried to convince Malorie to remove her blind fold and even got really close to the boat, but Malorie rowed away then got attacked by a pack of wolves.

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