The Fusion Is Female

The Fusion Is Female

Who run the world? Girls, girls!

When is the last time you've felt powerful? Like really powerful. To the point where if you needed to, you could knock someone out with the sheer force of the look in your eyes. I'm talking BEYONCÉ powerful.

My last time was at the All-Female Fusion performance at IASA's cultural show Sarani on November 3rd.

Those seven minutes on stage, dancing to some of my favorite songs, doing body rolls, deep bends, dressed in a fierce af outfit with full-out diva make-up –– those were quite possibly my favorite seven minutes of being on campus.

When I first signed up to dance with IASA, I had no idea what I was getting into. I thought it would be a casual, fun experience dancing to some Bollywood songs and meeting some new people. I never thought I would walk away from it reinvented in a sense. The very first dance our choreos taught us was a slow, sexy number to Camila Cabelo's Havana. Damn, that was a lot of hip thrusts and bending. I have no problem with other people being sexy, but myself? That's a whole different matter. I was so nervous. I was nervous about getting on stage, about what my parents would think. I was nervous that I would just look ridiculous instead of sexy. I knew how to move my body that way, but I really didn't know how to do it in front of other people. I suppose that stems from a layer of self-consciousness. A layer of not being comfortable in my own skin, with my sexuality. Of being told to safeguard myself from "that" world. Of course, I'm still young, but I'm not a child anymore either.

After two months of practice, I knew I had the moves down. I knew I could look sexy. It was just the matter of doing it in front of a bunch of people, strangers, family and friends alike.

The entire day leading up to the show was all prep work. Prep work of getting ready, getting dressed and dolled up, last-minute practicing of moves. It was a lot of fun, and the more my new dance friends dressed me up, the more confident I started to feel. That made me realize something; wearing the make-up, wearing the clothes actually does empower. There's a direct relationship between looking sexy af and feeling sexy af. I would never recommend getting dressed up like that on the daily, because oh my god that took forever, but when you are getting dressed up, own it, girl. Go all out. You look hot, feel it too.

Then, getting on stage, I felt myself surrounded by this amazing group of women, who I'd bonded with over the past two months. I felt even more empowered. "Who run the world? GIRLS GIRLS!" That had been our chant for so long. I felt strong, fierce.

Our choreos taught us to make every move big and powerful. "Punch like you're trying to f*ck someone up, punch like you mean it." That's not something that women hear on the daily. We're taught to be calm, dainty, composed.

But being powerful is cathartically liberating.

Being powerful is a high.

It amped me up to the point where I was comfortable being sexy. I was comfortable in my own skin. I felt fierce, not ashamed or self-conscious. The cheers of my friends and family in the audience egged me on.

I walked away more confident in myself. I walked away not conscious of the way I was walking. I walked away with the motivation to hold my head high. Empowering.

It's true how people say that dance is an empowering art. It's true what they say about the rush of pleasure that sets you loose. It's true that embracing your sexuality feels SO MUCH BETTER than feeling ashamed of it. Like I've said before, these are all things you hear and live vicariously but don't truly understand until you've done it yourself.

I had a wonderful experience with Sarani this year, and I encourage every young women that if given the chance to be a part of an all-female dance group, take it. Dance with your fellow women and feel the power.

Cover Image Credit: Riya Gupta

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31 Times Ron Swanson Told It Like It Is

"Keep your tears in your eyes where they belong."

Heading into this semester and I’ve already had a few breakdowns. I have absolutely no free time between classes, clubs, work, band practice, student teaching, and going to the gym. However, my own free time of sleeping means going to sleep with "Parks and Rec" on… and who doesn’t love Ron Swanson?

1. “Crying: Acceptable at funerals and the Grand Canyon.”

2. “When people get too chummy with me, I like to call them by the wrong name to let them know I don’t really care about them.”

3. “Never half-ass two things. Whole-ass one thing.”

4. “There has never been a sadness that can’t be cured with breakfast food.”

5. “Keep your tears in your eyes where they belong.”

6. “I don’t want to seem overdramatic, but I don’t care what happens here.”

7. “I can’t go because I don’t want to.”

8. “People are idiots.”

9. “I hate the public. The public is stupid.”

10. “I like to do nothing, with no-one.”

11. “Friends: One to three is sufficient.”

12. “I’m not interested in caring about people.”

13. “There is no wrong way to consume alcohol.”

14. “Capitalism: God’s way of determining who is smart, and who is poor.”

15. “Sting like a bee, don’t float like a bee – that’s ridiculous.”

16. “It’s pointless for a human to paint scenes of nature when they can go outside and stand in it.”

17. “Honor: if you need it defined, you don’t have it.”

18. “Any dog under 50 lbs. is a cat, and cats are pointless.”

19. “Give me all the bacon and eggs you have.”

20. “Buffets: Whenever available. Choose quantity over quality.”

21. “Perspiration: only sweat during physical activity or lovemaking. No emotional sweating.”

22. “I regret nothing.”

23. “There’s only one thing I hate more than lying: skim milk, which is water that’s lying about being milk.”

24. "I’m not a sore loser. I prefer to win. And when I don’t, I get furious.”

25. “Well, I am not one for speeches. So, goodbye.”

26. “Stillness: don’t waste energy moving unless necessary.”

27. “It’s always a good idea to demonstrate to your coworkers that you are capable of withstanding a tremendous amount of pain.”

28. “If you need anything at all, too bad.”

29. “There are 3 ways to motivate people: money, fear, and hunger.”

30. “I enjoy government functions like I enjoy getting kicked in the nuggets with a steel-toed boot.”

31. “When I eat, it is the food that is scared.”

After writing this article, I feel as though I have a deep connection with Ron Swanson. Anyone else? Anyway… back to "Parks and Rec!"

Cover Image Credit: Instagram

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20 Movies For 20 Years

Who needs life lessons when you can list movies?

I turned 20 on January 15th. I've lived two decades! DECADES! That got me thinking of everything I've accomplished and all I have yet t accomplish.

One thing stuck out to me: I've seen a lot of movies. So to celebrate me turning 20, I've compiled a list of the top 20 movies that have stuck out to me in my life. They're in no particular order because they're all amazing. 10/10 would recommend seeing all of them when you're done reading this. Without further ado, here are 20 movies for 20 years.

1. Get Smart (2008)

Although I haven't seen the orignal TV show, I love this movie to death. I could rewatch this movie 100 times and still laugh every single time. Plus, you can't ask for a better cast.

2. A New Hope (1997)

I watched A New Hope when I was really young and even though I didn't understand much of it, I loved this movie. This movie stood out to me as a child because I loved Han Solo and Princess Leia. As I grew, my obsession with Star Wars grew along with me and now, I actually want to become a Jedi.

3. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

Raiders left me awe-struck as a child. I loved Indiana Jones and all of his adventures. The scary parts phased me only slightly, but watching Indy kick ass was a crucial part of my childhood.

4. Mulan (1998)

Mulan is my favorite Disney movie to date (followed closely by Hercules). I liked her for the same reason I liked Princess Leia: she was a princess, sure, but she fought and stood for something. It also helped that Mushu was in this movie and I think we can all agree he's the best sidekick ever.

5. Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade (1989)

This movie, by far, is my favorite Indiana Jones movie. If it's on TV, I will switch from my regularly scheduled programming to rewatch it. Also, Sean Connery as Indy's dad is the best casting choice ever.

6. Argo (2012)

This movie might look out of place on a list like this, but I love 'based on true events' movies. Argo is a must-see if you haven't already. I watched this movie probably once a week after it came out online and every single time, I was waiting on bated breath to see what happens next.

7. The Incredibles (2004)

Not only is this movie a part of my childhood, it's an integral part of my family. Whenever I watch it alone, it doesn't feel right. My family and I have watched this movie together close to 30 times and we know every single line by heart.

8. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001)

Okay, the more I compile this list, the older I feel! I read all of the Harry Potter books and watched all of the movies for the first time with my family. All of the movies in this series are phenomenal, but this one has a special place in my heart. It was my first introduction to the wizarding world and I've wanted to go to Hogwarts ever since.

9. Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986)

I saw Ferris Bueller before I went to high school, but I loved watching Ferris and his friends play hooky for a day. Even though this movie is before my time, I love watching it and getting those #80svibes.

10. The Dark Knight (2008)

This was the first Christopher Nolan film I saw and to say that I was blown away would be an understatement. The Dark Knight made me realize I like gritty dark films and every so often, I have to rewatch it just because it's The Dark Knight and it's amazing.

11. The Hunger Games (2012)

I distinctly remember where I was when The Hunger Games came out. I was performing at the 8th Grade Talent Show in my middle school cafeteria singing a Kelly Clarkson song with my friend at the time. We saw the movie that weekend after religiously reading all of the books and it has been ingrained in my brain ever since.

12. High School Musical (2006)

I don't care what anyone says, High School Musical defined a generation of children. Like The Hunger Games, I remember exactly where I was when I first watched HSM on Disney Channel and you better believe I still sing Breaking Free to this day.

13. The Martian (2015)

On a more serious note, The Martian left me in awe after the credits rolled. Never had I seen a movie that wasn't reality yet, but could very well be a possibility in the future. Again, if you have yet to see this one, go watch it after you're done reading this article.

14. Wonder Woman (2017)

After I saw Wonder Woman in theaters, I wanted to kick some ass. That movie made me feel empowered in ways I can't explain.

15. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)

Similar to Wonder Woman, TFA made me want to fight someone after I left the theaters. It was so refreshing to see a woman at the center of the Star Wars universe surrounded by my old favorite characters. I could watch this movie over and over and never be bored.

16. Moana (2016)

Out of all of the Disney ladies, I aspire to be Moana. Her drive and curiosity makes me want to go out and explore the world. She's truly a role model and I love her for that. Plus, her pet pig Pua is adorable.

17. The Breakfast Club (1985)

I actually hadn't seen The Breakfast Club in full until a few years ago (GASP!), but when I did, it was amazing. There's something in every character that I identified with and they were each so unique and well-written, it was hard not to love this classic.

18. Spotlight (2015)

At a time when I was going into college and considering journalism, watching this movie sealed the deal. Even though I've since changed my major from Broadcast Journalism, I will always enjoy Spotlight and be thankful for the work that team did for the betterment of society.

19. The Parent Trap (1998)

When my sister and I were younger, we loved watching this movie and rewatching it when we were older was even more fun. The Parent Trap proved that even sparring siblings can work together to make something happen and watching Lindsay Lohan act with herself is just amusing.

20. The Lion King (1994)

Talk about a movie I watched over and over when I was little. I saw this on Broadway as well and it just blew me away. The Lion King will always be a classic story that will last for generations.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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