EMMA IS A FREE WOMAN (free from homework that is)

On a happier note…

I owe you another entry for not having uploaded anything yesterday or the day before that which you’ll be happy to know is because I’m hard at work reworking some chapters of a book I’m writing. *applause* Okay the applause was too much but I’m really proud of what I’ve done so far and that’s partly because I’ve been getting so much advice from everyone here. For that, THANKS A BUNCH.

but back to the topic of this entry.

Emma Watson, who happens to be one of my absolute favorite actresses, has graduated from Brown  University, a prominent Ivy League school. I know this isn’t exactly a gossip column to be posting about the latest happenings in the crazy but strangely very entertaining life of the the rich and famous but I am a huge fan of Emma and I did promise that this blog would be dedicated to everything that makes me happy or get to being happy so there it is. Besides, she is Hermione Granger after all so I get a free pass for fangirling all over the place.

I’m just really pleased that as much as Hermione is a symbol of diligence and the value studying and learning, so is Emma. A lot of kids these days need that kind role model who does prioritize education even in the face of work opportunities and fame. It shows them that YOU HAVE A CHOICE. YOU CAN BE WHO YOU WANT AND YOU CAN DO WHAT EVER YOU SET YOUR MIND TO EVEN IF IT’S NOT EXPECTED. It’s very non cookie cutter of her to pursue her education despite her career and I think that’s one good thing to learn.

 

SO HERE’S TO YOU EMMA,

beautiful

talented

and yes, very smart,

CHEERS TO YOU AND YOUR HARD-EARNED DEGREE.

on Elliot Rodger

I had a different entry prepped for today but as I was browsing through my news feeds, I read about Elliot Rodger and I couldn’t help but talk about it.

photo screenshot from one of Elliot’s videos

On April 23rd Elliot stabbed 3 of his flat mates, shot 2 people dead and left a couple more injured after posting a series of disturbing videos on Youtube. (I’ll put the videos or their links below for you guys.) According to his family he was disturbed and acting differently for awhile, this was confirmed by Santa Barbara Sheriff Department as some of their deputies had several  interactions with him including a welfare check leading up to the shooting.

Ultimately, he ended crashing his BMW where he was found with one gunshot wound to the head. The conclusion to his promise of retribution in a Youtube video upload made a day before the intended shooting was grim, all those rants of loneliness and not fitting in finally catching up to him.

Looking at how he set up that day, it was definitely pre-determined. Acquiring the gun, taking down his videos then reuploading them, making a particular video indicating his worries and the reason for the actual rampage- making women pay for his misery, that took some deliberating before he actually went with it.

What puzzles me however is the casual manner by which he approached the massacre.  He stabbed his flatmates, people he probably knew for the 2 years he was in college. Then he grabbed his gun, shot 3 people 2 in front of a sorority house in his campus (even knocked on the door but settled for shooting the ones outside), one outside a deli with obvious eye witnesses and CCTVs and proceeded to shoot random pedestrian as he drove on in his BMW.

People could easily say he’s a sociopath or his morals are questionable or he’s a disturbed young kid but then how do you address that. Do you toughen Gun Laws, lessen violence in video games, disallow Youtube rants or whatever else everyone thinks is to blame? To be honest, this is highly reminiscent of the Virginia Tech and Berkley and many other shooting sprees where a normally okay individual snaps and starts shooting or stabbing people to death. I mean, do they even really snap or were they always that way, we just failed to notice?

If we blame the circumstance or the environment of the shooter then haven’t we done enough tweaking since the Columbine shooting? What else should we change? If we blame the shooter, shouldn’t we ask how he came to be a maniac shooting random (or not so random) civilians? Was it the peers, his school or other people around him? How do we fix that? Was he born that way? Are people with tendencies of being morally less adaptable safe to integrate in the society?

There are so many questions swimming in my head since I read a couple of articles on him. This particular topic is one of those which I find difficult to let go for some reason. I first encountered it in depth as a motion for a debate in the uni  and since then I’ve done a couple papers and bought books about similar situations where people go on a relatively unexplainable rampage. It’s difficult to delve deeper into it because most of these shooters either kill themselves or are shot by police officers in pursuit so we’ll rely on their videos and stories from people they knew to piece the puzzle together.

I’ll end this now relatively long entry with a question: do you think we have learned from the Columbine?

 

***

-I just need to add that Elliot’s Manifesto for an anti-women group gave me chills, not in a good way.

–As promised, here’s the link to Elliots channel on youtube which is still up by the way.

https://www.youtube.com/user/ElliotRodger/videos

 

 

 

song pick of the week: ALL OF THE STARS by Ed Sheeran

Because I most recently have been exploring my love for music I thought it would be fun to post a song pick every week– most likely the one I’ve been listening to the most. It’d cover any genre but since I listen to a lot of alternative and acoustic music, you’d probably see me post a lot of those and btw, I also follow a lot of Youtubers who maintain music channels and have really good covers so I might share some of those too.

This particular one, All of the Stars by Ed Sheeran, was posted just about a week ago and it has been on repeat since. I think I’ve pissed off my neighbors for playing it a tad too loudly and all the friggin time. That should tell you how much I love it but then again, I AM CRAZY ABOUT ED. Have been since I first heard A Team and has grown exponentially when he sang the ost for one of my favorite books of all time, The Hobbit.

And he’s done it again.

This song is the ost for The Fault in Our Stars, a much anticipated movie starring Ansel Elgort and Shailene Woodley which is based on John Green’s bestseller of the same name. I think this song is written perfectly for the movie. I could not fault it one bit.

I hope you love it as much as I do.

All Of The Stars Lyrics

by Ed Sheeran

It’s just another night
And I’m staring at the moon
I saw a shooting star
And thought of you
I sang a lullaby
By the waterside and knew
If you were here,
I’d sing to you
You’re on the other side
As the skyline splits in two
I’m miles away from seeing you
I can see the stars
From America
I wonder, do you see them, too?

So open your eyes and see
The way our horizons meet
And all of the lights will lead
Into the night with me
And I know these scars will bleed
But both of our hearts believe
All of these stars will guide us home

I can hear your heart
On the radio beat
They’re playing ‘Chasing Cars’
And I thought of us
Back to the time,
You were lying next to me
I looked across and fell in love
So I took your hand
Back through lamp lit streets I knew
Everything led back to you
So can you see the stars?
Over Amsterdam
You’re the song my heart is
Beating to

So open your eyes and see
The way our horizons meet
And all of the lights will lead
Into the night with me
And I know these scars will bleed
But both of our hearts believe
All of these stars will guide us home

And, oh, I know
And oh, I know, oh
I can see the stars
From America

okay

a Harry Potter prequel: The Gathering Storm

I was 8 when I first met him. He had a quaint-shaped scar on his forehead, wears clothes a few sizes too big and sleeps in a cupboard under the stairs. They called him ‘the boy who lived’.

books

My journey with books started with JK Rowling’s Harry Potter (and Tolkien’s Middle Earth series) when I was very, very young. I remember staying up way past my bedtime with nothing but my book, a flashlight and the earnest hope that at 11 I too will get my Hogwarts letter. Although that never came, I was gifted with so much more.

Through Harry, JK opened me to creativity, emboldened me to pursue my dreams no matter how lucrative and encouraged me to keep reading and writing even when very few kids around me shared that passion. Harry taught me that it’s okay I’m different. It’s okay that sometimes people don’t get me, that I make the most unlikely friends, that troubles badger me continuously no matter how hard I try to stay away from them and that I often care too much.

I think I speak for most in the Potterhead fandom when I say that we will never get enough of her and the magical world she has so laboriously created. Harry Potter is a part of me and in his world, I feel at home.

So if at any point you’re just like me, in search for chances to ditch the Muggle movie sphere, I’m inviting you to support, donate, share and/ or watch The Gathering Storm. It’s a fan-made movie, written, acted, shot and financed by very creative and dedicated Potterheads.

As there are no trailers out yet (well, not that I know of), the most that I could tell you is that it chronicles the Marauders and other prominent wizards and witches during their time (most of them in their 6th year at Hogwarts) as they face a world at war with the dark arts and those who practice it. Although this has no ties with Warner Brothers or the original producers of the Harry Potter franchise, expect that it will do the prequel justice  because Potterheads love the story too much to let it suck. Trust me, that’s all the reassurance you’ll need. Plus I’ve seen all their efforts on Tumblr and I have to say I’m very impressed and EXTREMELY EXCITED to see the movie.

I’m not sure if I’ve ever mentioned it before but my favorite character in the Harry Potter series is Sirius Black (and you’ll know why in the coming entries) so I’m definitely looking forward to getting to know him more especially before Azkaban and see his interactions with the 3 other Marauders, Prongs, Moony and Wormtail. Then there’s Jily, one of the most loved, as proven by the thousands of fan fictions about it, ships to ever grace any book. I’m sure so many would be squirming to see the red head fall for the trouble maker, finally on screen.

Before I go off into the Harry Potter daydreamland (as you might have noticed), allow me to end this entry by inviting you to visit this site: http://marauders-fanfilm.tumblr.com and their social media sites mentioned on their page and help out in whatever way you can.To all the non-potterheads, we’d be deeply indebted to you and rest assured you won’t regret it. To my fellow Potterheads, you guys know what we’ve got to do. Get the word out and support the cool people who came up with this in the first place.

And lastly, to the cast and crew of The Gathering Storm, thanks for braving the unknown and putting your heads and efforts together to make this happen. We all need some magic back in our lives and your movie might do just that.

MISCHIEF MANAGED.

the MAZE RUNNER trilogy

Allow the inner book-beast in me to rejoice in finally finding the time to finish the Mazerunner trilogy written by James Dashner. I recommended the first book to you guys a few weeks back along with a few other must-reads with the highest praises and yes, with the slight disappointment that it’s just 3 books.

photo from tmrspanishfandom.tumblr.com

I knew from the first 10 pages it was gonna be an interesting read. You could say it’s a personal prejudice of mine since I’ve always openly said that I LOVE DYSTOPIAN NOVELS (let the caps be a guage as to how much) and the reviews have described it as such but to be quite honest, I don’t think you’ll realize that it belongs to that genre until much later, much much later (as in last-few-chapters later).

Personally, the complexity of logic behind the story presented in the simplest, most relatable but exhilirating manner allowed me to empathize with characters (Thomas, Minho and the Chancellor Paige especially) and understand the plot as if it was happening to me. I believe that to be a difficult feat particularly in futuristic books where the scenarios are often exaggerated and unimaginable.

The trilogy reminds me of George Orwell’s 1984 and Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go only targeted to a different demographic, much younger. That allowed the plot to zoom in on responses of teens to extreme situations which would normally make you question the significance of a moral high ground. Also being relatively young, you do ask, ‘What would I have done in their position?’

photo from insidemovies.ew.com

*A word of warning: the indented text is a rough retelling of the trilogy (Mazerunner, Scorch Trials and Death Cure)

It follows the life of Thomas who woke up aboard a lift, memory swiped and purpose unclear to a group of around 50 boys living in what they call the ‘Glades’. He soon discovers that the high walls surrounding the Glades doesn’t just keep the people in but keep Grievers, advanced technological killing machines, out. As he fights to regain his memory, make friends and find a way out, he realizes the biggest problem yet- they’re trapped in a maze and the only hope of freedom is to brave running through the moving walls, past the grievers and into the exit they’re yet to find.

When the first girl, Teresa, was sent to the Glades only a day after Thomas came, she triggers a set of forces that make their home unlivable- no sun, walls to protect them or food supplies to get them through. They’re forced to escape the Glades once and for all. After an ordeal of an escape and many lives lost, they finally thought they were safe only to find out that Phase 2 begins after just a long night’s rest.

They were soon told that they were expected to journey 100 miles north to the Safe Haven, through the abnormally excruciating  heat, across a city filled with incurable, disease-infected and crazed inhabitants  the world calls cranks to obtain a promised cure to the now well-spread pandemic that wiped out most the population and turned the rest paranoid. All these, they’ll later on find out is but an experiment implemented by WICKED to find a cure to the very disease most of the Gladers are immune to.

In a world victimized by the Sun’s angry outbursts, where governments have fallen, the only hope of humanity is riddled with questionable morals, every city is quarantined and cranks crawl every unprotected structure, how would anybody cope?

Again, sorry for the few spoilers. I managed to avoid the names, some crucial details and the actual ending of the last book but I hope you do get a relatively clear picture of the plot and the intent of the author.

Trust me when I say that it’s one of the best dystopian novels out and available but even if that’s not you’re kind of read, you’ll love the wit and sarcasm of the characters balanced out by their humanity in an obviously inhumane situation.

Happy reading! Good that.

hiatus finally over

tumblr_m2yr20CeMd1ro8qpo

 

MISCHIEF MANAGED.

To the Potterheads, you may already know what that means. Simply it means that whatever I’ve been up to- and clearly, it’s been fun and hectic that I wasn’t able to update my blog for a while- is finally OVER. Honestly, I’m not sure if I’m truly happy that it’s over but I’m definitely glad to be back and writing again. I needed this, actually more than I thought I did.

So you’ll be reading more from me soon. 🙂