Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010: Scandal, Divorce, Death

The year is winding down. Only a couple more days until next year.

2010 came and went. I celebrated the new year at a small party. The moment of truth (12:00 a.m.) passed rapidly and before I knew it, I woke up and it was 12:00 p.m. on Jan. 1, 2010. Twelve hours of the brand new year went by as quick as lightning, now it's Dec. 30.

2010 was filled with scandal, divorce and death.

  • Tiger Woods, Jesse James, and Tony Parker infidelity. 
  • John Edwards fathers child with mistress.
  • Four Loko reformulated. No more caffeine, kiddos. 
  • Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, Mel Gibson, Charlie Sheen act stupid.
  • Katy Perry's boobs on Sesame Street.
  • Miley Cyrus and the bong.

  • Courteney Cox and David Arquette
  • Sandra Bullock and Jesse James
  • Tiger Woods and Elin Nordegren 
  • Christina Aguilera and Jordan Bratman
  • Eva Longoria and Tony Parker

  • Elizabeth Edwards succumbs to cancer.
  • 7.0 Haiti earthquake damages equal $7.2 billion to $13.2 billion with a death toll from 200,000 to 250,000 according to the Inter-American Development Bank  
  • Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada and tragic death of Nodar Kumaritashvili, the 21-year-old Georgian luge competitor who died in a training crash.
  • "Earthquakes, heat waves, floods, volcanoes, super typhoons, blizzards, landslides and droughts killed at least a quarter million people in 2010 - the deadliest year in more than a generation," according to the Washington Post.
Obviously, this isn't everything, but if I'm missing something super important, let me know!

Let us toast to 2011. May this be the year of  love, peace, and positivity (hopefully). 

Monday, December 27, 2010

Hocus Pocus Focus

Summer vacation, winter vacation, sick days, holidays, self-made vacations. You name the vacation, I will like it. It's the nicest feeling ever. During the holiday, I bask in my complete freedom.

It's all a matter of focus.

I dread having to go back home and work all day doing something I don't enjoy. One day that will change. I am on that journey right now. I am starting the transition so I can soon do what I like. Hopefully, it won't be in vain.

The terrible thing is, I don't know if I'm a good writer. Am I? My professors don't seem to think so, I don't get an A on every paper. I even had a professor go on about how journalism students write in a way he didn't like. Um, I thought I was supposed to be able to write better than others. I mean, that is my major. I am learning how to write. It is my expertise.

Focus the camera, focus my life.

In order to get what I want, I must focus on my career, my dream. Nothing is handed out on a silver platter, at least not for me.

 Freelance update:
  • Money saving tips article.  Status: unpaid, unpublished.
  • Pebbles article.  Status: paid, unpublished.
  • Prayer.  Status: unpaid, published.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Very Merry

Merry Christmas. Feliz Navidad. Joyeux Noel. Buone Feste Natalizie. Kerismas Mobarak. Happy holidays.

Here's hoping everyone's Christmas is filled with joy, unlike this gingerbread man. Take in the warmth of love which Christmas brings, this day only lasts so long. In just a few hours the day will turn to night; December 25, 2010 will fly by, then we all must wait 365 days until this time next year.

Turn that frown upside down, little dude.

I always tell myself time flies, but it still surprises me how fast the months seem to pass. I'm surprised December is almost over and I wish I could rewind a few days so it could last longer. In this moment I am free of responsibility. No school. No work.  I sleep in, watch movies, spend time with my friends. This truly is a holiday.

Tis is the season of happiness. The chilly weather freezes my body, but on the inside I bask in the glory of this moment of cold. It never snows. It rarely rains. This is my way if getting in the spirit, and I love it.

Don't be disappointed in your gifts if they weren't exactly what you wanted. If possible, try to hold off bickering with your brother. Let this be a day of festivities, food, games, and gifts. Let's be merry today!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Twas Christmas Eve and 55 Degrees

Twas Christmas Eve and 55 degrees in the lovely state of California
a poem by me (Carmen)

The night was cheerful with smiles of delight,
all the world was happy in unison.
Christmas lights dazzle and shine from rooftops.
Children stare longingly at their presents,
waiting and wishing for tomorrow's day.
Parents drink many glasses of eggnog,
enjoying the warm spirit of Christmas.
Santa and reindeer travel the vast globe,
delivering gifts to every person.
Be merry and love everyone around.

You know what it is:
Red and green. Red and green. Red and green.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Winter Ambiance is Dead

Well, the rain stopped. There is no more winter ambiance. Now it just seems like a regular California winter.

I enjoyed the watery downfall. It was something different than I am used to. It rarely rains here so the past few days of constant rain had me thinking I teleported to Seattle. Maybe I can go out in shorts sometime soon or maybe I'll go on a hike.

 The week is flying by, but thankfully I spend my time in great company. I will have many crazy, hilarious, fantastic memories.

In the future, I will look back and remember these days of rain and friends. I will be happy and smile to myself. I will think of how things change, how young I was, how stupid I was, how great it was.

Maybe it's the seasonal, winter, Christmas spirit in me, but I am basking in the glory of December 2010. Only a few more days until next year.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Cold as Ice, Despite Socks

After taking several modes of transportation to travel home for Christmas (bus, train, car), I finally am here. Usually I am waking up late for class or running to work, but now I can finally have a holiday. I can rest. I can meditate. I can chill out. I will spend the next few days doing absolutely nothing with my favorite people. I will create new memories to tide me over until the next time I see my friends. I will have an amazing time.

It feels like Christmas now, and I'm just soaking it in before it passes. The sky is gray. The trees violently jerk in the wind. Rain splatters on the window.  The rain hasn't stopped, but I have mastered the art of layering. I'm cozy, except my feet are always cold as ice, despite socks. I love the feeling of being warm in cold weather.

A mug of Bengal Spice by Celestial Seasonings with hemp milk is my definition of heaven, minus the curdling. I also tried Sweet Apple Chamomile, which was scrumptious as well. I watched 500 Days of Summer again. I forgot how great this film is, very raw and true. Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon-Levitt are great.

I feel wonderful.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Xmas. Rain. Tron.

I'm in the mood for Christmas. The Christmas spirit is officially in me. Christmas 2010 is around the corner, and it's difficult to come up with unique Christmas gifts. I haven't come up with a Christmas list or anything official, but I have hinted at what I want.
Rainy day in Seattle, WA.

It has been raining all day and it rarely rains where I live. I've got rain on my mind:
  • When it rains it pours. Don't rain on my parade. It's raining men.
  • "Singing in the Rain." I used to love this movie as a kid. This is truly a great classic with awesome costumes.
  • "November Rain" by Guns N Roses. I adore this song. It didn't really rain in November though. 
 "Nothin' lasts forever and we both know hearts can change,
And it's hard to hold a candle in the cold November rain."
Rain puddles in Athens, Greece.
  • "Purple Rain" by Prince. Hmm...I prefer "Purple Haze" by Jimi Hendrix.
  • "No Rain" by Blind Melon.
"And I start to complain that there's no rain
And all I can do is read a book to stay awake
And it rips my life away, but it's a great escape."

Things that are interesting to me:

After the rain in Vienna, Austria.
  • Senate has voted to end the "don't ask, don't tell" policy. That's kinda progressive. Thank goodness.
  • TRON: Legacy. I feel nerdy saying this, but this actually looks really good. After I saw the TRON: Legacy trailer, I couldn't resist. I love Jeff Bridges and the visual effects look spectacular.
  • Christmas countdown. This is awesome, maybe it should be my screensaver. Christmas is coming so soon! I can't believe it.
  • Scarlett Johansson and Ryan Reynolds split. Aw. How sad, I was looking forward to seeing if the Scarnolds kids would be cuter than Brangelina's. However, this is mainly a good thing, because now I can have Ryan all to myself.

Since it's is gloomy, I just want to cozy up with some delicious instant hot chocolate and watch movies from my instant Netflix queue. Sounds like the perfect way to spend my vacation.

Friday, December 17, 2010


I never thought I'd say this, but I'm a prayer writer. Well, for an assignment I am perfectly capable of writing a prayer. It isn't published yet, but it is scheduled to be showcased as a Daily Prayable on Dec. 24, 2010. It will also be shown somewhere on the website.

My prayer is Christmas Eve worthy! Woo hoo! Apparently I have a spiritual knack with my words. This website is directed toward women of any religious background. People from all religions can feel comfortable because there is no religious affiliation. It's kinda neat.

This is pretty exciting for me, seeing as this will be my first paid and published assignment. If all goes well. However, this website is more credible than my other assignment. So here's hoping this one is legit.

Stay tuned and only the future will tell if this goes through. Hopefully this will be my first freelance writing gig.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Semester Accomplished!

See you next year. I won't miss you.
Now I have a few weeks to spend some quality time with 2010. Now I can enjoy my holiday, since it snuck up on me so quickly. Writing assignments, essays, quizzes, tests,  and homework don't exist right now. I can marvel in the little things. Finally!

My favorite things about this time of year:

1. Gingerbread man cookies. Yum. Why are they so delicious and cute?

2. Layering clothes. I can wear more of my clothes during this season, seeing as I can wear more than one layer. Shirt, cardigan, scarf, leggings, socks, boots.

3. Tea. I love tea anyway, but now is the time I drink it all day. Chai tea with soy milk.

4. Bed. The warmth of my bed is so comforting. As a child, when I was scared I would hide under the blanket. "Nothing will get me under here," said a 5-year-old me.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Anonymous Author

So here's the deal. Here is my internal anguish. I just finished writing my first freelance article. It's for a not yet published, small, self-made magazine in NYC geared toward lower and middle class families. I wrote an article on money saving tips.

A. Make sure nobody is looking.   B. Steal.

In my optimistic, dreaming mind I was excited for my first assignment. Wow. Here's my chance. My time to shine. My first step to the rest of my life. Go me!

I put in hours of my time. I had to brainstorm, form, craft, and weave these words together so they could be read fluidly. I had to read and reread and re-reread until it sounded perfect. I had to make sure the average person could read it and comprehend my thoughts.

I sent the article to him a couple days ago and here I sit still waiting for the bill. Will he pay or will he scam me? Will he steal my work, not give me any credit for it, or pay me? Will I be a no name? Anonymous. This is the internet after all. There are no binding laws. If he doesn't pull through what can I do? Stomp my feet? Send angry emails? If he doesn't fork over my money, I'll admit, I'll be mad. I put time into this piece.

What if he does pull through? Maybe I'm just jumping to conclusions. This is his first issue. Perhaps he is swamped with creating his own personal vision, just as I am. Am I a little too caught up in the money?

I just wanna be, I just wanna be, I just wanna be successful.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Give Peace a Chance

In a world where war is prevalent, try to love. There is so much hate and war in this world. Let's have it be over, okay? Let us all be friends.

No more war in Iraq or Afghanistan. Let's get along with the Iranians. Love thy neighbor.  Stereotypes are out-dated. We live in an age where everything is revolutionary and brand new. We have so many opportunities, but we want others to fail.

Humans can be selfish creatures. We have a negative way of thinking: my success is more important than your success. I want to make money, I don't care who I backstab to get it.

We should be more like dogs. Really. That sounds bad, but look at them. First off, from when they are puppies to when they are old, they're so darn cute. But dogs are also extraordinarily loyal and adoring, they never stop loving you. Ever, ever, ever. They like most people, dogs, animals and don't have anything negative to say. Scooby Doo and Lassie are awesome!

Remember this simple equation:

(Love > Hate) + (Peace > War) = Global Harmony.

The end.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Eye. See. You.

A rather cool feature on here is that I can see which countries people who visit my blog are from. While most people are from the grand U.S.A., I have some international viewers. Hello to those in Denmark, Israel, Canada, Unite Kingdom, Greece, Malaysia, and Ukraine for taking a gander. I love to witness new culture. I love to see unique foods and architecture. I love variety and opening my mind to culture. I love to travel.

I hope America has a good reputation in other countries. Maybe they think all we do is watch Glee or Jersey Shore. (Untrue.) Jersey Shore only has dumb people acting stupid. I'd rather sleep than watch Jersey Shore, at least it's more productive.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Whoa There Buddy...

I took an opinion writing course this semester. Not sure why, really. But I've written so much of my opinion, I can go off on any topic. Here was my last assignment, I scored my highest grade ever with this one:

    I don't want some fat airport guy touching all my lady lumps. That's not cool. It's depressing we are the country that greets guests with a grope or a naked photo.   

View of the airport from my seat.
    Travelers have every right to be pissed off about the new intrusive screening procedures at the airport. They're basically seeing me naked with their x-ray vision body scans. Our liberties and our bodies are being stripped. It's not the American way. I don't think things could get any worse.

    Everyone might as well be naked, since that pretty much what the scanner does. People get less action than that on a date. I have to spend hours at the airport only to have to throw my water bottle away, take my shoes off, and get groped. I used to love flying, but now it's just a hassle and a what feels to be molestation.

    I've been to airports in several countries and done quite a bit of traveling, so I can say from experience that America's airport system is by far the worst. With all this ridiculousness, things have completely gone down the crapper. Who would want to come here?

Real sign.
    When I flew EL AL in Tel Aviv, they screened everyone, asked the right questions, did their job, and got everyone out of there very quickly. They are one of the safest airports, so they must be doing something right. America should take notes from the Israelis.

    This is not the price I pay for freedom. It is uncomfortable that the body scanner or the pat down person is searching me in private ways. Why would I want some random person to see me naked? It is humiliating and degrading. 

    What about the radiation? I can't even fathom they would allow something hazardous to be used. Now that is un-American.

    The poor pilots have every right to protest the body scanners. As a pilot, they must go through security every day. Being exposed to radiation every single day they come into work is not healthy whatsoever. I can't believe this is legal.

    If this weren't an issue, there wouldn't be so much backlash. Everyone hates it, especially because they don't seem to work well. Sometimes the body scanner machines come up with false positives.

    Let me get this straight. I have to get to the airport three hours in advance. I have to wait in a staggering line. I have to undress by taking off my shoes, belt, earrings, and various other things which may be considered dangerous. I have to have a body scanner look through my body, only to have it think I am suspicious. Then someone has to rub their hands all over every crack and cranny on my body in order to get through the gate. No thanks.

Friday, December 10, 2010

La Vida es un Carnabal

Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, and the JoBros are trash. It's barely music. It most definitely isn't considered art. I don't own any CDs by these "artists," yet I know every word of each song. I believe the explanation is because music recycles on the radio--sometimes you can hear the same song on two or three different channels.

Art differs for everyone. I've seen way too many paintings in art galleries and museums that look like someone threw globs of paint on a canvas. If I think my artwork is as good as something in a museum, it's got to be pretty hideous. I'm the worst artist that ever lived. That's why I love street art. Now that takes talent. When people complain about graffiti, I take pictures because I think they are ridiculously cool.

Someone takes time out of their life to sneakily graffiti a wall and not get public credit. Their art isn't sold for millions of dollars like a Picasso; in fact, their art gets covered when another artist tags over it. It's symbolic of the circle of life. You get your time to shine but soon enough someone will paint over you and then you're gone, just a memory in a mind or a photo on a camera. You only get one shot.

I took all these photos in Athens, Greece, as I was
walking about the ancient city. There were ancient ruins and graffiti was everywhere; it was beautiful, a mix of vintage and modern. It was like being in an outside art exhibit. There were so many fantastic pieces of work. They were creative, unique, and whimsical, like they were popping out of a fairytale. I wish I could have brought them home with me. In a way, my camera was able to capture their glory forever. So now, I show them to you.

There is art everywhere, be it an actual painting, a scene from nature, a long lost photo or a snippet of conversation you hear as you pass by someone. So smile and go forth. See the art in the everyday. :]

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Last Day of School

"FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL! FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL! FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL!"  Remember Nemo, when he was excited for his first day of school, bouncing on his sea anemone? I am that excited about school right now, but reverse the circumstances: last day of school. Regrettably, finals lurk behind the corner, but with hours of meticulous study, I will conquer them.

Another semester down. Three more to go. The real world is sneaking up on me quickly; this is where the anxiety lies. Will this college degree help me obtain a job so I can support myself? Will I be able to work for a magazine like I've dreamed, or will I be stuck giving people their food? There are thousands of unanswered questions in life. The only way to get them answered is to live it. If you look too far into the future, you just might fall.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Welcome to California

Being a long time Californian, I am ashamed to admit that I only recently made the journey out to Venice Beach.

The sun was out, but boy was it chilly. Not to fret, I am a smart girl and remembered to check the weather. I made sure to layer.

I heard tales from my roommate of the wonders of Venice. I imagined blue skies, vendors, and cool people. My dreams were fulfilled, to a degree. The vendors weren't as plentiful as in the summer months due to the cold and lack of tourists, but I did see a lot of neat stuff.

 I was greeted by a totally tubular painting (I recently watched "Valley Girl.") on the side of a building and had to snap a photo to document it in the photo album that is my life.

Man, I wish I had some artistic talents. Whenever I try to draw, I am so ashamed I have to throw it away. My talents lie elsewhere I suppose.

There was a lot of amazing art to see. I saw cute paintings of funky looking owls with bold, colorful backgrounds. There was a guy making various necklaces and rings out of beautiful stones, beads, and metal.

I bought some fantastic incense; they last so long and they smell fantastic. The smoke lingers, hovering in my room until I swat it away.

By the end of the Venice adventure, my hair was so windblown, I was ashamed to be seen in public. The LA traffic was a mess coming back, but that is to be expected.

I had a pleasant time. This photo captures the essence of Venice Beach. The palm trees, the grainy sand, and vast blue sky.

This is California.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Tis the Season...

It's a week into December. Soon it will be Christmas. This is my favorite time of year. Everything and everyone is so festive; you can practically see the extra pep in people's steps. But eventually Christmas will be over.

Soon it will be January 2011. I'll have to start writing "2011," but as per usual, I will forget about the new year and continue writing "2010" until mid-February. Eventually the time will come when it sinks in that it is a new year. By this time, we will be two months in and I will then freak out that we are already 1/6 through the new year.

Time goes by so fast. It really does. I can't believe it. 2010 is almost over. This semester almost over. I'm getting older, you're getting older, everyone is aging. I remember when it was the Millennium and it was cool for babies to be born in 2000. Well, now those babies are 10 years old. They're getting older too.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Nourish Your Body

There are very few things in this world that I like better than food. Food is delicious, especially when I am thoroughly starved and every bite is inhaled so quickly that it is gone before I even know it. Sometimes I forget how amazing something tastes, but luckily I like to take photos so I have some of the best meals I've ever eaten captured forever.

Friday, December 3, 2010


Is it childish to have a dream, to want to follow it? How many people actually enjoy the job they have? I presently work in the food industry and my goodness it is awful. Patrons are extremely particular about their food. I dread having to wake up and go to work. It is not what I enjoy. It is not what I want to do with my life.

What I do like to do is write. I like to write creative stories. I occasionally whip out a poem. I prefer when teachers assign writing assignments compared to timed tests. I like doing what I am good at. I am good at what I like.

I want to pursue my passion. That's my aim. As a Kanye West song lyric says, "reach for the stars, so if you fall you land on a cloud."