Taking a Break with Adventures!


This semester has not been stressful as previous semesters. But I have been busy with a lot of essays and projects for classes. Last week I decided to take a break from all of the work and go home for a few days. It was my niece’s birthday and my sister decided to go to a place called “The Jungle” in Concord, CA. I did not realize how stressed I was  from school until I was on my way to “The Jungle.” I was thinking about all of the assignments I had to do the following week. However, once I got to the place there were children playing in tunnels, slides, and bouncy houses. My sister was in the arcade playing a racing game with my niece. Their shoes were off and they were having a good time. My niece ran up to me with her two friends and they asked can I go to a bouncy area with her. I said yeah. At that moment all of my worries about school was over. I was in the moment of enjoying my niece and finally having a day to enjoy myself.

My sister joined us and we went inside a bouncy play area. It was amazing how everything was set up inside. It looked like a world of Super Mario with blown up flowers, and shapes to grab onto if you fall. We climbed up blown up stairs leading us to a slide. My sister and I went down to wide slide with my niece and her two friends all at once. It was scary and amazing at the same time. We all tried to get up and constantly fell. It was funny because we could be clumsy and silly without any judgement. Of course, with younger children around there is never judgement. My sister and I realized how old we were because we were out of breath. We went up the slide once more and got out. When we got out we did not have enough energy so we rolled out and landed on our backs. It was so funny that we could not stop laughing.

When we finally got up my niece ran to the tunnel and invited me. Of course, I was crazy enough to get in. We were climbing, sliding, and going through so many things I thought it would never end. I tried to keep up with my niece, but I realized I am taller now and older. When we finally got out my heart rate was beating quicker than I expected. Afterwards, we went to the arcade and played games. I have never played the dancing game or air hockey. I played and was pretty good at them. I have not felt so free in a long time.  I was happy that I took a break from school and went home for my niece’s birthday.

For all of you readers, if you want to take a break from school for just a day. I would not suggest to go to a party, night club, or do something that you are used to doing. I would suggest going out and doing something where you could feel like a kid and be silly for once. As we get older we forget how to have fun because of our load of responsibilities. Taking that one day off will be worth it. If you do not have time right now, try it after finals week. It will be worth the wait.

Working Is A Glass Half Full


Today at work I was given a field day, which basically means I get to work outside and out of the office. The work site is an hour and a half away in the middle of the San Joaquin Delta. The objective is to locate siphon pipes that go through the levees and go into the water so that they can divert water from the river to the land beside it. Now that you have some perspective on what today will be like, I would like to introduce you to the theme of this entry.

I feel the strain of work and the slow moving clock, but it is a stressful life to concentrate and focus your energy on that. You must try your hardest to look at the work that you do and look at it with the Half Full Perspective. If you are unfamiliar with this it is when you focus your energy on the upside pieces of the labor that consumes your time. People will down this form of optimism, but that’s the beauty of half full. You still recognize that there is a balance and that the half emptt is also present. I could concentrate on the allergies I have, the mosquito bites I will get, and the rainy weather, but that’s not the way I see it. You can dramatically change your life by just altering your perspective on the way you look at things.

It is challenging to go through life always trying to make the best if things. There are plenty of things I wish I had and there are plenty of times where I don’t always feel the best, but I actively try to maintain the joy in my life. Life will always try to get you down and that will never change, just be a little more open to the fact that statistically we will all eventually feel pain. Not all the same, but all people hurt some way or another. Embrace that and try hard to overcome and beat it.

All the things I have learned is that taking care of yourself and your well being is the first job and the most important job. If you don’t work, the world around you doesn’t work.

Work is a cycle and that is a scary thing to imagine. The same thing for x amount of years. That is why it is important to try and find things to be thankful and happy for. If you need change, initiate the plan that needs to be done to get ahead. Good things do not come easy, but it is fun working your ass off for something you really want. You need dreams, turn those to goals, turn those goals to actions, turn those actions to habits. I blamed people, quit blaming people. People will always let you down. Count on that, and take accountability to the things that are important to you. Blame yourself and allow your ego to forgive yourself. We sometimes treat everyone fair and treat ourselves cruelly. Treat your self you deserve it. Be happy for no reason, allow yourself to see the light in things that are not there. Being happy is sone thing to fight and work for.

Easter


Easter is finally here! This was a holiday I used to spend with my family without understanding the meaning behind it. As a young child, meaning behind holidays does not matter. The only thing that matters is that the family gets together and celebrate the holiday with each other. I come from a big family so our family tradition was to visit our cousin’s house in Richmond, CA. The house has a back yard that has a hill and big enough for all of the children to search for Easter eggs. I remember going to the house, painting Easter eggs, and eating large plates of food. The parents would be in the backyard hiding the Easter eggs in the backyard , and us children would go to the back and do a Easter egg hunt. There was always a golden egg that had money in it. The adult’s loved me and knew I would share with my siblings, so they showed me where the golden egg was. I held on to the money until it was  time to go home. When my mom took my siblings and I home, we stopped by the store, and I bought us all snacks to eat. I used to love the Easter egg hunts.

Now that I am older, everyone in my family is working. No one has time take the entire day off for Easter. We all might work and get off early. But I realized that things change as you get older, especially the way you celebrate holidays. There are only a few children in our family right now who can do the Easter egg hunt. However, my cousin’s who held Easter each year at their house is older now. No one feels like doing the Easter egg hunt so my siblings, mother, and I meet up by five o’clock and eat dinner together. It isn’t much but it is enough to keep my family together for the holidays. We are now discussing a new way to celebrate Easter. For instance, doing more activities for my five year old niece to have something to look forward to each Easter, similar to what my siblings and I looked forward to each Easter. Although my family and I are older now, it is still great to have traditions to expand ideas for them in the future.

 

Losing my mind, and possibly my government…


imagesOne of the things I’ve been comforted by, since Trump’s election, is the amount of political participation. People are protesting, going to town halls, etc. It has made me think that, if we can sustain it, we may have a chance at stopping (at least) the worst of what’s happening in D.C. now. Because it is the only way we have of stopping it. It’s only been a month of Trump’s presidency, and already you can feel the fatigue. We can’t let the fatigue get to us. What is happening is seriously terrifying. It is threatening to slowly erode our democracy. I don’t think that Trump is Hitler, the comparison is insulting. And, I don’t think Trump is the only person threatening our free system in this country. I think there are a lot of congress people that are doing whatever they feel like doing, instead of representing the American people. But, if we can keep up the level of political awareness, and outrage, we can really shake up Congress in 2 years. I’m really hoping that we can vote out enough Republicans in Congress to get a majority. Then, at least, we can make it much more difficult for Trump in the last 2 years of his presidential term. And, even more hopefully, we can then vote Trump out. Amazingly, I feel like members of Congress are actually incentivizing people to vote them out of office. Since Trump has taken office, and done many things that scare people, or anger them, or both; people have begun to engage with their respective member of Congress. They’re going to town hall meetings, calling their representative’s offices, or e-mailing their Congress person. And, incredibly, Congress’ response has been to shove their fingers in their ears and shout “LALALALALALALAAAA, CAN’T HEAR YOU!!!!” This makes me rage as much as Trump being president. Congress is supposed to represent the will of the people. They are supposed to be beholden to their constituents. But, now, they are shutting down lines of communication between them and the people they are supposed to be working for. Kellyanne Conway is telling them to ignore their constituents, that the only thing that matters is (what she calls) the “Real Person Impact” (R.P.I). She says that it only matters what “real” people think. Which I find directly insulting, apparently I’m not a real person. But, how does she determine what “real” people think anyway? She’s telling representatives to actively ignore constituents trying to make their voices heard. And, we know the Trump administration denounces polling data. So, how are they getting the information on what “real” people think, anyway? Over the weekend, our representatives went home to their districts. Of the 292 members of Congress, there were only 88 in-person town halls scheduled, and 35 of those were for ONE Congress person. Our members of Congress are instead opting for live-streaming town hall events online, where they can pre-screen any questions they decide to answer. But, that’s not all. Many Representatives are not answering their phones, or e-mails. We have people faxing their representatives, because it’s the only way they can get their voices heard by the people that are supposed to be representing their voices. I hope all these people hold on to their outrage over this, and actually vote these people out in 2 years. Because this is not how democracy is supposed to work.

Art Street Fun


Palette.As an artist, I tend to flinch when someone goes up and touches another person’s art. Much of the time, art is made to just be observed. But, going to Art Street, and seeing different pieces that were designed to be interacted with, was a change that quite interesting. I had to get over the knee-jerk reaction of “why are you touching things?” That was a difficult feeling to get over. I’ve taken art history classes, where you learn of all the art damaged or lost forever. In the early 19th century, some frescoes from ancient Egypt and ancient Greece were stripped of their original color for aesthetic purposes, aesthetics of that time period. Art being handled, or exposed to camera flashes, etc. can slowly damage art over time. And, the art is someone else’s creation. I would usually feel strange, seeing people touching my work. But, art isn’t only one thing. Art is everywhere. Art is an experience. Art can be anything. DuChamp famously took a pre-made urinal, and signed his name to it. A joke, yes. But, also a statement, anything can be art. And, having art that engages more than one of the senses makes for some pretty interesting experiences. There’s a room with nooks cut out of the walls, lined with pillows to sit on. The nooks have headphones, with meditation style music playing through them. The room has a giant zen garden in the middle, lit up by green and yellow lights softly shimmering across the room. Another piece was made of moss, in a picture frame mounted on the wall, with a sign that says “Please touch me.” One piece, that was particularly popular with children in attendance, was a collage (in pieces) on several turnstiles. Depending on which way each of the turnstile collages were faced, and where you were standing, determined what type of collage you will see. Kids ran through these giant turnstiles, pushing them around and around, like they were playing in rotating doors. Having art that not only engaged your senses, but could be fun, is extremely smart. Kids are having a good time, and being exposed to art. I wasn’t just standing around, talking about the pieces, wondering if I could take a picture. I was standing inside the art, playing with it, feeling it. Everyone was having a good time, kids were going up to the open mic. Adults were closing their eyes, and really listening to the experience. We weren’t just staring, we were climbing inside, and living the experience. I think this kind of art needs to be around us much more than it is. Going to an art gallery, or museum, feels like a chore sometimes. Something to educate us, or our children. But, once you are there, you go out of your way to keep quiet. You’re afraid to take photos of the work. Adults with children are always on alert, making sure the kids aren’t wandering off breaking things. This isn’t a conducive environment to enjoy the art you came to see. And, it’s mostly boring for the children. I remember being dragged to museums. I didn’t want to be there. But, experiences like this make people interested in it, engaged with it more fully. It was a lot of fun.

Art Street by M5Arts is in Sacramento until Feb. 25th

 

If you are an artist at Sac State, and would like some of your art reviewed, contact me: DJTraySquat on facebook. And, listen to Poli-Psycho on KSSU.com every Wednesday at 6-7pm

Valentine’s Day Plans


imagesValentine’s Day is one of those days that people either look forward to or not. Depending on if you have a date or not is what will get you in a good mood. I personally never have a Valentine or try to have a Valentine that day. Its not because I’m a grouch towards the lovey dovey thing. I usually look at others and laugh at how silly they could get about the person they love by doing romantic things. Also, how sad and lonely people are because they don’t have a relationship, or are too afraid to ask their crush to be their Valentine. So what am I looking forward to on Valentine’s Day? Being my own date and treating myself to anything I want to do. Taking myself out to eat or calling some of my single friends to have a single night out is usually a good choice. It’s too much to make plans and believe they are gonna go as planned. It’s best to wake up and see what you prefer to do that day. If you all have someone special in your life go ahead and share the love. If you have a crush go ahead and ask them to be your Valentine. If you have plans enjoy them. If you don’t have plans treat yourself or ask some friends to celebrate with you. It’s a day to share love to others and yourself. It shouldn’t be a day full of expectations but surprises. For all of you who have class on Tuesday it’s okay. I am kind of upset because it’s on a Tuesday and not on the weekend for everyone to enjoy their entire day.

If you all are curious about how Valentine’s Day came about I think it would be a great idea to look up the story. It’s a beautiful story about a man falling in love with a woman. The way they met was interesting and the way it ended makes a lot of sense of the day celebrated. After learning about the story I have a better understanding about Valentine’s Day. It helped me realize that Valentine’s Day isn’t about dates or presents. It’s about sharing love to others and yourself. So to the readers, go out and share your love others or even yourself. I hope everyone enjoy their Valentine’s Day. Hopefully there is enough information provided here for someone to get an idea of something to do for that day. Enjoy yourselves and share your love. HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!!!

 

 

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Super Bowl Heartbreak


ap17037035090294Well that was an intense Super Bowl we all witnessed! The Falcons got off to a blistering start which was clearly leaving the Patriots a bit bewildered. The first half was nothing short of surprising because the Patriots were not supposed to trail by that much; granted we all knew the Falcons had an explosive offense…but so to did the Patriots. The amazing thing though, was it was not the falcons offense that gave them that big lead, it was their defense. Brady threw two picks, one which was returned for an 82 yard touchdown. Coming into the game, the Falcons defense actually ranked closer to the bottom of the league (according to nfl.com), so when Dan Quinn’s defense came out with those 2 picks and the 3 or 4 sacks of Tom Brady, I was a bit surprised.

Then came the 4th quarter…and literally everything changed like I knew it would. The Patriots were just too good to play that poorly and I knew they would at least make a game out of it…and boy did they ever! As soon as Julian Edelman made that ridiculous catch, I knew the Falcons were going to lose. Everything was going the Patriots way at this point and there was going to be no way that the Falcons defense could with-stand the Patriots onslaught.

It was painful to watch the Falcons lose control of that game. As a 49ers fan, I was only rooting for the Falcons because their offensive coordinator, Kyle Shanahan, was going to be our new head coach, which should be cause for excitement for Niner fans, but that is another blog for another time. The Falcons just simply ran out of gas, and against a team like New England, that is asking for trouble.

Overall, it was an exciting game to watch. This game seemed to have all the drama that a sports nerd could want. It had the excitement of the team you rooted for getting off to a sizzling start, then it had the moments of nervousness as you watched the opponent start to come back, and finally it had that disastrous moment of heartbreak, when you lose in overtime. This game had every emotion you could ask for. This is why we love watching sports. Yes, our teams will have moments of glory, but there are those other times when they (in this case the Falcons) must endure gut wrenching moments that sting you for the entire off season.

On the bright side, the Falcons still look poised to make another championship run, if they keep their core players intact and they can stay healthy, then I think they have a legit shot of returning to the super bowl. However, losing their offensive coordinator is going to be huge for them because Matt Ryan had a really good relationship with him and they both worked very well together. Whoever becomes their new OC will have to try and emulate the success that Matt Ryan and Kyle Shanahan built. Not an easy task.

Super Bowl


superbowlI am not a huge fan of football, but watching the Super Bowl last year had me interested in watching it this year. The half-time show was interesting to watch because I didn’t expect so much entertainment during the game. I was with my roommates at the time and they were telling me how they were ready to see the performers during the half-time show. I asked why were they so thrilled and they provided a video from the 2015 Super Bowl half-time show. It was Katie Perry performing “fireworks” and she put on a great show. Last year Coldplay, Beyonce’, and Bruno Mars performed. It was a great performance, I didn’t expect the Super Bowl to be so live. After watching the performances from last year and 2015, i was ready to watch the Super Bowl to see who will perform this year. Lady Gaga performed and she did an amazing job. However, I expected to more performers than one so I was kind of disappointed. That is my fault because I was more interested in the half-time show than the actual game.
In contrast, the football game was interesting to watch. Of course I didn’t pay attention to the  entire game, but it got heated at the end. Both teams were tied and that made me want to watch the game. The Falcons and Patriots were tied for ten or more minutes and I was curious to see how either team would win. Of course they would be tied once the game is close to being done. The Patriots won the game and many fans were happy that their team won. There are many other games coming up but this game as interesting as last year. I am going to look out for more performances and commercials for the Super Bowl half-time shows. Hopefully it gets more interesting than this one game and performance.

 

Me and Baseball


indexHello world! My name is Matthew (Matt) Wilkie and this is my very first blog on here. I am pretty new at doing this so please bear with me. I think a good place for me to start on my first blog is to give a nice introduction about who I am and what I am doing with myself.

First of all, I am an older student at Sacramento State. I have my reasons for starting a bit later in life but those reasons I will keep to myself if you all don’t mind! haha. Anywho, I am a communications major with a emphasis in mass media. It is my goal to get into the broadcasting field, specifically into the sports arena. Sports is my life, and discussing sports is probably the one thing that helps me get out of my shell. If my friends discuss anything else, I basically become a bump on the log.

My love for sports is also what attracted me to become a DJ on KSSU. As soon as my training is complete, there will be a new sports/country music show that my listeners can tune into. The show date is still to be determined so please be on the look out for when that happens.

My favorite sport by far is baseball. There is just something about baseball in general, the smell of the grass, the crack of the bat and managers and players getting ejected that creates a special allure to me. In hockey, people sometimes say “we went to a fight and a hockey game broke out;” this is sometimes true in baseball too. Brawls are a fairly common occurrence and this adds to the appeal of baseball. However, it is not the ejections or the brawls that really captures my attention; I think it is the suspense of what will happen on the next pitch that really causes me to stop what I am doing and pay attention.

Baseball has received a bad rap for being “too slow.” I will agree it is generally not fast paced like football or basketball is, but it is a game that requires strategy, which is something I love. Now you might ask “how on earth is there strategy in baseball, I mean for crying out loud, all you have to do is hit the ball and run?” Well there is a lot more to this glorious game than that. First of all, the batter does not swing at just any pitch; he needs to be selective. It is imperative for a good baseball player to have a “good eye at the plate.”Secondly, the pitcher does not just throw one type of pitch, he usually has at least 3 or 4 different kinds of pitches he can use to try and confuse the hitter in hope of getting him out. Thirdly, base runners try to read the pitcher in a way that allows him to get a “good jump” in order to steal a base. These are just a few different kinds of strategies that baseball has and I could probably write another 1,000 words getting into more details about baseball, but I will end it here.

So that is a little about me and my passion for baseball. Please stay tuned for more blogs later on during this semester.

The Finals Week Rally Cry


6359780403164185121342282463_finals-babyTo Hopefully Make This More Inspiring, Read This To This (Especially the last minute and forty five seconds (4:13) or so): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7dfZoz6fGc

For most of us, it has probably been a long, tough semester. There have been demoralizing exam results, the feeling of defeat as we type our term papers, and the grueling 8 a.m. lecture have attempted to take us out of the game.

We have had all-nighters, mental breakdowns, and our fair share of failures that have made us wonder if the direction that we have chosen was the right one. There are times where we ask ourselves: Do I have what it takes to keep pushing forward?

You bet you do! Not even the force of of bad professors and group projects can bring you down. Keep your head up and let your determination, your preparation, and your will to push on keep you sane and make your trek through this dark time known as finals week be out finest hour.

Remember the reason why you are here, the future you want to have, and the thirst of success and keep marching on, take every test with conviction that you can pass and you can achieve what you once thought was impossible.

You have come a long way to get to this point in time. You have passed through the transition from teenager to adolescent. You have survived the scary realm known as high school, where drama and disaster loom around every corner. You have survived tough times and excruciating tasks that have made you stronger and more resilient for the looming threats ahead.

Pain is only temporary, but glory lasts forever. These finals may be a disaster now and life may be a little cloudy, but when the sun shines through the clouds, there is a world beyond the classroom and it is waiting for you.

This world, depending on the way you see it, can be paradise or perdition, an oasis or a vast wasteland with no hope given by the rivers of the waters of life. With the right mindset you are battling your way though this university to find paradise after you leave the halls of the Riverside, the walls of Tahoe and Alpine, or the great Mendocino.

With the right mindset, you will find happiness and accomplishment after you finish at this university. Finals week may be a tough time that makes you lose hope, but never lose sight of why you’re here. Believe in yourself and the causes that keep you alive and moving forward and allow good feelings to get you beyond finals to accomplishment.

To all of you who are graduating this semester or in the spring such as myself, congratulations. You probably have worked hard and been through grueling and rewarding experiences alike and soon it is about to all pay off and you will resent to the real world to find your paradise.

However, never lose sight of where you came from. Remember the friends and the great experiences that have positively influenced your upbringing into adulthood. Thank those who had supported you through your finest hours and the dark times of your college career and finally, make your university proud!

And for those who still have a bit of classes left, keep on moving forward for commencement will be closer than you think. As the great coach Jim Valvano once said, “Don’t give up… Don’t ever give up.”