Drawing the line

On Friday, some kids here pulled an early April Fools' prank on their classmates, lacing some donuts with laxatives, just like on an MTV show they'd watched. Now, while I think it was an awful thing to do, considering the potential effects on anyone who may have eaten one, it was still a childish act. The children are now facing criminal charges.

Of course, there's a difference between right and wrong, and these 13 and 14 year old boys were known as jokers. However, the severity of the action is just one example of how adults are rushing children to grow up so fast these days. I'm not ignoring that the prank was shown, apparently with instructions, on TV, merely analyzing the reaction by officials.

We're living in a world that makes thongs for pre-teens and overreacts by sending in the bomb squad over a harmless ad campaign. What, years ago, would have simply been written off as a harmless teenage prank punishable by perhaps a week or two in detention is now being handled by the police. Think about that.

I wouldn't have wanted to be one of those people who ate the tainted donuts, but the effects of a laxative last a day at best. There would almost certainly be no permanent damage. When it comes to more severe incidents, such as when kids deliberately attempt to poison their teachers, then perhaps police involvement might be more suitable. However, perhaps they should try to give kids a warning first instead of arresting them. Work with their parents. Heck, even scare them a little bit. When I was in kindergarten, we took a field trip to the local police station, where they locked us up in a holding cell for a few minutes. Even when you're five, that can have an impact.

There are just so many aspects of today's society that are making childhood shorter and shorter. Arresting children can leave them with a very negative self-image, and it can make them feel hopeless. If it happens more than once, and I've met some people who'd been through the juvenile system, it really does damage their sense of hope.


I haven't written anything here in a while, and that's basically due to life happening. At the time of my last entry, I was amidst the graduate school application process and saw the opportunity to wax nostalgic about my favorite movie as a method of release. I'm disappointed that the application process did not go as planned, due to one of the professors whose recommendation I required being on sabbatical this year. I tried to contact professors back at the end of November, hoping to get their letters by the February 1st deadline. One of them was out of the country and didn't get to my email until the third week in January. By that time, I'd sent an email, written and delivered a note, and set up an appointment immediately at the start of the spring semester.

However, the other professor never responded. In spite of her autoresponse claiming that she will check in and respond eventually, months (and a second email later), she hasn't. I sent the second email due to one program having a due date for application of April 1st and the hope that if two months wasn't enough time to respond, perhaps four months would be. Unfortunately, she hasn't written back, and I won't be able to get anything submitted. I'm trying to take it positively, though the graduate school process took up a big chunk of time starting last fall, and drove me absolutely nuts with stress. I'm disappointed, but all I can do is just take the next year to strengthen my candidacy and hopefully I will have more success.

Last month, my grandfather passed away after almost five years fighting lung cancer. It's still really weird not having him downstairs, not joking with my mom about the television he left blaring so loudly we could hear it up here because his hearing aid had slipped behind his bed, not seeing him smile and crack a joke. It was pretty obvious that my grandfather felt that he wouldn't make it long, and he was in a lot of pain. He gathered everyone in his room one by one last Christmas. Over the last year, he told all sorts of stories, especially when I'd come see him. And we got to have dinner together one night, just the two of us – something that I can't even remember if ever happened before. We've eaten lunch together before, but this was dinner and a good conversation. There is a project I may be taking on soon that involves electronics
and soldering –and he would have been able to advise me,
having done electrician work for a time, and later around the house.

I miss him.

Yesterday, I colored my hair. I only used a temporary color, so my hair isn't dramatic or lighter, it's just slightly redder, which softens the darkness of my deep brown hair and makes my natural red highlights stand out more. I don't like using anything too harsh on my hair, but experimenting is fun sometimes.

I've also been doing a lot of work on my website. It's nowhere near done, and the template restrictions are a bit annoying, but I'm going to work with OfficeLive for now, until I can host and design it myself. I'll post more about my site when it's more than a mere framework. I'm just hoping that building this online profile and homebase for myself will help me in my career pursuits. Getting a publishing job in NY is so competitive. Many internships are unpaid and I need money. The other internships are generally only for students. As if someone can't decide to change career goals at some point after school! I keep applying to various positions and attempting freelance in the meantime.

I just hope someone will bite soon. I don't have any contacts in publishing, and was never a big networker in school, so it's really difficult. Still, I'll persevere. The website is merely one link in how I'm attempting to establish myself.