Not a Real Millennial?…

A letter to those to in the Millennial generation, which I am supposedly in…

Dear audience outside my generation,

Some how I don’t feel qualified to give any insight on the Millennial generation since I flunked out. Yes, on the quiz we had to take of one of my classes I got a 30…out of 100. THAT’S A 30%!! THAT’S AN F!!! I have never revived an ‘F’ in my life! 73 to 100 is a Millennial, I am somewhere between an Baby Boomer and an Gen Xer according to this quiz. Technically I failed the Millennial test, it is like asking someone to drive you somewhere when they failed their driving test. The question I’m supposed to be answering righ now says to show how I personally can’t entirely be defined by the Millennial Generation tag. Well if it is based on this test than my personality is entirely opposite of the Millennial Generation, however, people and what people answer on tests are different. So no one can really be defined by the tests they take, or the clothes they wear, the music they listen to….. or if they have a tattoo or not. I’m going to stop ranting now…

So let’s start again. Dear Audience of Baby Boomers and Gen Xer’s let me try and explain…

It seems that every generation has certain traits or characteristics that define them, like 80’s hair bands and clothing, or 90’s hip hop and pop music. But just because many people during that time decided to do things similarly to one another does not mean that the entire generation did so. I’m sure not everyone decided to join that hippie craze though lots of people chose to do so. Every person is different, and I’m sure this sounds tacky but: you can’t judge a book by it’s cover.poison1

backstreetsback

 

I think this can be applied to every generation ever. When I asked people what defines our generation as a whole every person answered first with something relating to technology. Be it social media  or the lack of communication skills due to technology,  they each stated that the main characteristic that defines our generation is our use of technology. I figured this would be the answer from most people. Now I know you other generations use tech too, however not to the extent we do. I mean we were born into a world on the  edge of a technological revolution and everyone  else had to live and watch it happen. All the other generations had to accept the changes that society was going through whether they wanted to or not. I know that had to be hard as things you never even imagined started to happen. As someone who doesn’t necessarily like change I know that it can be frustrating.  With technology, it is always changing and someone will always know more than you, and sometimes you feel that the younger generation thinks they are superior to you. Which brings me to my next point…

The morals and values of the Millennial generation.

First off I’m just going to say I’m sorry. I’m sorry for my generation’s appearance of superiority and knowledge. Not all of us are like that. The Millennial generation comes off confident and passionate and always thinking they know what’s right for themselves…and then there’s me and people like me. For me personally, I have always had trouble connecting with people my age. The only people I feel confident to talk to are adults and kids….it’s the people in between I have trouble with. i don’t want to talk to people who think they are always right or their opinions are obviously the correct ones.

See I just have this thing that we could learn from the older generations, I don’t think our generation knows everything. I think we think we know everything, but we don’t.  I wish that our generation would have a little bit more respect for our elders, I know that some do, there are lots of respectful Millennials out there. There are also a lot of disrespectful ones as well. Sometimes it seems that there are only disrespectful, immoral kids out there, the kind that make people say “kids these days.” But I’m here to tell you that we’re here, we just don’t project the kind of attention that gets people noticed in a negative way. I think patience is the key here. Be patient, we have good intentions at heart, I think.

I don’t know what I can say, I apparently have no idea how my generation thinks, so no one should be asking me. All I know is that the people around me are loud and proud, they act like they don’t listen but they do. They act like they don’t care what people think, but in all actuality that’s all they think about. Most of us are pretty good kids. Now there are always exceptions to the rule, everyone is different.  We’ll probably be in your position in a few years and be saying the same thing about the next few generations…so Thanks for putting up with us.

Love, Kaley

Pictures Cited from:

http://timeline.backstreetboys.com/?page=1997

http://writingitdown141.wordpress.com/

OK? What does that mean…

Have you ever used the word “OK”?

Well if you’re a human being and you can speak you probably have. Most people have used the word “OK” at least once in their life, but they probably couldn’t pinpoint one, exact definition of the word. Just One definition. This is  most likely  just me, but I have sometimes wondered why some words have had more definitions and connotations than other words (“OK” really being the main thought.) “OK” is such a widely used term, one would think the general population could find an exact definition, or even better, the exact and appropriate time to use the word “OK”. Unfortunately, there are thousands of circumstances where someone could use it.

The word “OK” is not a word shrouded with lots of rich history but is pretty relevant in today’s society. It’s an abbreviation with so many different meanings it’s tough to pinpoint a textbook definition or a direct history.

Etymonline.com states the meaning of the word goes back to an 1839, New York fad as an abbreviation of “oll korrect” (it was a purposefully misspelled version of ’all correct’ The modern population does this a lot, for example ‘kewl or hawt’.) The phrase means basically means what I thought it would mean: to express agreement or to say something is satisfactory but not great. But the term “OK” has more than one meaning. It became widely popular because it was used as an election slogan for the “O.K. Club” which were boosters of Democratic president Martin Van Buren’s 1840 re-election bid, in allusion to his nickname Old Kinderhook. That’s when multiple meanings for the term “OK” started to become more common and the abbreviation eventually becoming student slang in 1932. But enough with the history lesson…

Now, it can mean so many different things depending on how you spell it, what punctuation you use, or what context it is being used. For instance saying OK. And OK… or even Okaaaaaay! can mean an agreement or the confusion of the reader or “Alright! Let’s do it!!” There are just so many different ways to use it.

Today, “OK” is an actual word, I mean it is in the dictionary and everything, which I guess classifies it as a word. For me, I have never thought about the meaning when I use slang like “OK”. I automatically assume the person I am talking to knows what I am saying. I’m think you most likely assume the same thing. This is partly a generational thing. The people my age have a different meaning for words then our grandparents did. For instance in the 1920’s “bimbo” meant a really tough guy (modern version would be like ‘badass’), yet if someone said that now I would think of an air-headed girl. The reactions are polar opposites. When it comes to slang the meaning can change in an instant and usually goes out of style, like saying “Raise the roof” or “YOLO”. However, for the word “OK”, generations and generations have used it. Who knows how long the saying will be around, it could be forever. Unlike today’s slang, when someone says “OK” almost everyone understand what they are trying to say. The connotation of words is different from generation to generation, year to year, and person to person; but the ones that last connect everyone that uses them. Ok, I’m done.

Credited: http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2010/04/what-ok-stands-for/

letter to myself… and notes on Non-Fiction

Here I’m supposed to tell you about good writing techniques… Unfortunately, me telling you how to write good creative non-fiction is like alpaca herder in South America giving advice about stocks to a stock broker….aka very unhelpful. But I’ll try my best, I mean if I had to write a letter to myself about the subject and I can personally do better in it would look something like this:

Dear myself in the not-too-distant future,

Well I’m supposed to give you this awesome guiding knowledge that help you improve or expand your writing. Well that’s kind of hard considering you, as a person in the future, already know what I am about to say… so basically it’s pointless. BUT I’ma write it anyway.

So here’s the deal: Stop repeating yourself. I know you think that every sentence you write is important to what you’re trying to say, but you don’t have to reiterate a point to nausea. Keep things short and to the point. When you keep repeating yourself it takes away from the impact you are trying to make. As for the target audience, I have no clue about that. maybe you in the future know, but I don’t. It’s not like you are writing for specific people, just people that resonate with what you’re saying, and who knows who those people are! It is hard for me to just pick certain people and exclude others…I don’t like to be excluded, it makes me mad.

I think your voice is pretty evident in your writing, my writing…whatever! I don’t know how but you should experiment with different writing style and techniques. I know you probably won’t because you’re too lazy. But hey! Just a thought to switch things up a bit. Oh and I’m supposed to tell you to keep moving the narrative forward…so yep, do that.

From

The not-too-distant-past you.

Yeah, like I said, I’m like a South American Alpaca Herder… this guy says it better.

-Lee Gutkind once said that “…there are two sides to creative nonfiction: the personal, as found in memoirs and personal essays, and the ‘big idea’—a public topic, the kind often tackled in literary journalism—each of which tends to attract a different audience. The ideal piece is one that explores a big idea from an intimate perspective.  This… is the writer’s mission.”

This is a general statement about the genre of nonfiction as a whole. It is not a cookie cutter way of writing nor is it actual fact. It is a helpful tidbit of an opinion that may be useful when we start writing our own nonfiction pieces. As for the works I read, “The Intimacy of Forks” by Liesl Schwabe and “Why I Remembered What I Remembered” by Angie Chuang, both were at varying levels of Gutkind’s “ideal” nonfiction piece. Both conveyed personal experience in an exceptionally prevalent way. In “The Intimacy of Forks” the author tended to weave a theme in between the personal stories as best they could, but some how it gave off a disconnected and choppy feeling, at least for me that is. Where as in “Why I Remembered What I Remembered” there seemed to be more focus on the main story or experience then there was on a “big idea.”

I think Gutkind’s philosophy is pretty sound in reasoning. I mean I like a good story as much as the next person, but it needs to relate to a common theme or idea for me to connect with what the author is trying to say. There needs to be a purpose.  If there is no purpose why should I read it? But what do I know, that’s just my opinion. That is the beauty of nonfiction, there is no one way of doing it. If you like just personal stories, go for it, if you like just plain idea essays, have at it. Write what you need to write. That’s what I do.

This Little Thing, Or the lack there of…

house-fire

I’m going to start with a little hypothetical situation. Imagine your house is on fire, I know…not a very pleasant thought especially if your house has actually been on fire before. But just imagine that it is. There are yellow and orange flames everywhere and you know that you only have enough time to retrieve one thing from you house before everything is lost. Everything else you own will burn into ash and float away in the wind. Now let’s just say everyone is out of the house, including pets. What do you take?

Every person would have a different answer to this question. Picture of my family, my favorite piece of jewelry my grandma gave to me, some knick knack or another that has some sort of sentimental value. The possibilities are endless. But it might be hard to narrow down all your things to just one item you would take. But as you read this, think about what you would take.

Theburninghouse.com is a website that’s asks you to take a picture of the things you would bring if your house was burning down. I decided see the conventional and unconventional things people decided to bring and how similar or different they were to one another. I looked at 60 pictures and took note of the things people decided to bring, and some things that I found were surprising and others were not. We would all like to think we are a little different from one another, but all humans are actually pretty similar. About 30% of the people who took a picture are very like-minded individuals and brought very similar things with them, and 87% brought at least one of the top items. Their pictures looked more or less something like this:

Nikon Pics 013

(From greatest to still-pretty-great-but-less) A camera, a favorite or important book, a cellphone, some sort of bag, passport, wallet, a personal computer, a type of notebook or journal; these things rated the highest in what people would take. I didn’t have a passport to take a picture of, so just pretend it’s there. If people took one of these items there was usually another one of the items they brought along, about 30ish percent out of the 60 pictures. I found it interesting that 25 people decided to take their phone but only 2 people decided to take their chargers… well at least two people are thinking ahead. I get the importance of most of those top things, passports, wallets, electronics and all that, I would take those things too. However, there are some things I don’t understand in bringing. Clothes. About 70% of people brought one or more items of clothing, the highest item being shoes. Why are the shoes so important? Can’t you just get new shoes? If all my shoes burned I would be more than happy to go buy lots of new ones for myself. There were a few other items that baffled me as well like: pens and pencils, makeup, perfume, sunglasses and liquor. Can’t you buy these things pretty regularly? Why grab pens and pencils instead of something more valuable? I mean you can literally go to the store and buy pencils for under a dollar. Now go back to that hypothetical situation at the beginning, was your item something easily replicable?

Now what would happen if you were not able to save that item and it burned up, never to be seen again? Would you feel a tremendous loss? Cry? Feel as though an important part of your existence is lost forever? Why is that? Why would you be sad? Because you might be attached to it through the memories and sentimental value you placed in the object. And we all do this at some point in our lives. We put memories in to an inanimate object and turn it into something sacred to us. But in reality the thing is just a thing. A notebook is a notebook, a necklace is just a necklace, and a knick knack is just a knick knack. A necklace does not equal the grandma that gave it to you. Why do we put so much value on these things? The only value other than monetary it has is whatever value we put into it. Therefore, when faced with losing or giving up that object it is harder for us and emotionally trying. We should not feel this way about material things, I mean I try not to.

When I thought about it, I could not think of a singular item that had special meaning to me. I know what you’re thinking “You have nothing of meaning to you? What if all your stuff burned? Would you be sad then for something you lost?” Well of course I would be sad, that’s my stuff! But the thing is it is just stuff, I can get more. I am not saying I don’t love my things. I mean if all my stuff burned I would be a little upset, but I can always get new things and possibly better things. I thought of the hypothetical situation and what I would do, I decided to take a picture of the things I would take if my house was burning down and it looked something like this:

Nikon Pics 017

My backpack to carry all my stuff, my cellphone, Mp3 player and laptop with the necessary chargers, headphones (though I probably could have left them out because I could just buy new ones), camera, my ironman flash drive because it has a lot of important things on it, important documents, my medicine, my wallet, All my drawings, my coin collection because it took me a long time to acquire it and I don’t want to have to do it again, and a key chain from Thailand my friend (who I probably won’t see again) gave to me.  Now I have some crossovers with what normal people would take, electronics mostly. I took most of these things because they are expensive like the laptop and camera, and I wouldn’t want to have to buy them again. Or I wouldn’t be able to acquire them again like the keychain, drawings, and coin collection. This just shows you how lazy I am that I wouldn’t want to work hard to replace my things. Other than that, I wouldn’t bring any “fluff” items that are replicable, clothes, jewelry, toys, or books. Those items are relatively inexpensive and easy to replace. Given the choice I might not have taken anything if not for the fact that we’re comparing what we would take in this type of situation. I realized that:

 

Stuff is just stuff.

 

Now you’re saying: “But what about the things that have sentimental value and we cannot replace if they burned?” Sentimental value is the value of something to someone because of personal or emotional connotations, not than material worth. I can understand having a connection with a person, but I can’t understand a connection with an object. It really is not a connection with the object itself. That means you would be connecting to some cold piece of metal, scrap of fabric, or sliver of paper…you can’t connect to the material itself, the object isn’t the source of the connection. You connect with the memories and sentimental value you place in said object. So if that item burned does that mean all those memories and value burn along with it, disappear and you’ll forget? Material items only have monetary value, any sentimental value you put into them will be gone after you die. No, the tangible things in life are not the things that actually matter.

This is not a lecture about the dangers of material things, I’m not trying to criticize people about being too worldly and whatnot.  I am not saying to stop loving your things. I mean if all my stuff burned I would be a little upset. But again, I can always get new things. I am just saying to not be too emotionally attached to items that in all actuality, are not indicators of who you are and your life. Your things are not who you are. They are not the people who gave them to you. Your things are not your memories. Your things are just that, your things. Stuff is not made to last forever, sometimes you are going to lose things that you find important and will not be able to get them back. Items are a great way to spur a memory or relive a moment, but they are not the actual moments or memories themselves. Just remember that when your things break, get lost, get forgotten, disappear without a trace, you memories and sentimental value do not disappear along with them. The most important items are the ones that are intangible

Speaking of disappearing, back to the hypothetical situation and the one item you grabbed. You’re standing outside in front of a pile of smoking rubble. All your things are gone, but you and your family are safe. You feel depressed because you liked all your things and now they are gone. You and your family will have to start over from scratch. Then you remember, not totally from scratch. You look down. You are carrying something in your hand…what is it?what-to-bring

Making a video…

Once upon a time, my roommate Riley wanted to make dance video to one of her favorite songs, Tori Kelly’s “Dear No One”. She asked my other roommate to film it and she asked me if I wanted to help as well. Well confiding by the roommate code, I said sure I’ll help, cause that’s what friends are for. So we set off in the morning the misleadingly cool morning…

We filmed in a couple of different spots around our college campus like underneath one of the shady trees surrounding Piatza. Then we journeyed to a farmers market a little ways away to finish it. Man! That was the most brutal part, all that delicious food…no money, it was like torture! I would like to say I had an extremely important,a painstakingly vital role in this whole smorgasbord of artsy-ness. Yes, I did do some rather awful acting in it, and Yes, I did give my advice when asked, but mostly I was a pack mule. And let me tell you it was a job I didn’t take lightly. Man, I slogged through that farmers market like nobody’s business! It was a pretty good arm workout which made me really tired after about 5 minutes, aided by the fact that it was a billion degrees outside that day. I had no idea how long it would take… and it took forever.

But anyway, the fact is it takes a lot of different elements or factors to make something, especially things with film. We filmed from so many different angles in so many different places for the one dance scene. It was all about the detail, you won’t know what works until you see the footage. Together, with of without words, those elements tell a story that everyone can somewhat understand. And by the end of a full morning and afternoon of shooting footage over and over again, lugging heavy backpacks and equipment around, and sweating off at least 10 pounds in the heat, we finally ended up with that story. The finished product was a little rough but hey, it was our first time. I think it is great that people have so many different ways to express themselves. It kind of brings people together while still showing everyone differently. Like YouTube for instance. Everyone on that site makes videos = community, however everyone on that site makes videos differently to reflect their tastes and personalities = individuality. Everyone can express themselves however they want.  So…yeah…there’s something to chew on. It was an adventure for me that I have never done before, I learned a lot.

I also have a whole new found respect for people involved in film. Good job guys, I kind of understand what you go through…but not really.

Our totally awesome-low budget-supper artsy-video

 

I also did a video for my friend’s final project. It to a really long time to make and it was really messy….like I took a shower with my clothes on to get the paint off… so here that is for your entertainment:

This I Believe…

Awful, Bad, Not Great, Good, Great, Exceptional, three stars, four stars, five stars…there are so many ways to classify someone’s actions. whether it be professionally, competitively, or in regular everyday life, everyone has a standard of what they think is considered “good”. We all think this way, me included. However, could it be that we’re going about this in the wrong way? I mean let’s think about this for a second:

How many time have you said “I can’t do this or that”? I can’t sing, I can’t paint, I can’t write. Technically you can do those those things, you can move your voice up and down, you can put paint on a piece of canvas, you can put words on paper! You only think you can’t because you are comparing yourself to someone else’s style. I certainly would not like being compared to someone like Micheal Jackson when I dance or sing, because for one: I’m not Micheal Jackson. We’re totally separate people, the way I sing is not the way he sings so there is no sense in comparing the two of us. Unfortunately Micheal Jackson is considered a “good” singer and I’m not. When was that decided? At some point someone decided that the way one person did something was better then they way everyone else did it and it has been that way ever since. But it shouldn’t be that way. The qualities of a person’s actions cannot be measured in a hierarchy based on other’s previous actions.

For example: I have never believed I that I’m a good dancer. I wasn’t born a dancer, I had no natural ability. In class I’m always that girl in the back of the class. I don’t like to do auditions for anything because I believe I won’t make it into anything anyway. See I compare myself to the people around me and how much more talented they are, basing what they do as good and what I do as bad. I want to mimic them. But I don’t dance like those people. I dance like myself, and my actions are 100% my own. No one can mimic me and my style, if they tried it would mean everyone would compare their actions to mine. Technically, I dance perfectly just the way I dance.

So if you take away all the standards of society, all the comparisons, you technically do everything perfectly for the way you do it. There is no definition of a perfect action, people have been trying to find it for forever. No one can find it because they are looking for one singular definition when there is literally billions of definitions. Everyone is perfection their own way. Therefore everything you do is perfect. Everyone can do everything to the best of their ability. I believe that just because society believes you’re untalented in something, doesn’t mean you are. You are perfectly you 100%. I believe everyone defines perfection. I believe everyone is perfect at everything they do

Kaley was Here…or maybe she wasn’t.

*Warning-Sad thoughts ahead, read at your own risk…

When I started thinking about what I was going to write here it just made me really sad. Sure this is supposed to be my mark, like me signing the internet or something. I’m supposed to say something that will be remembered, encapsulating myself in to the world, never to be forgotten. Like signing “I was here” on something is going to be seen by people. But then I thought, no one will actually care if I was here or not… I mean out of the few random people who find this blog, and those who actually read what I say, how many are going to actually care? Not many I can tell you… And then that made me think about history and people in general.

Lots of people want to be remembered. When they die they want to some how live on in the memories of those they helped or touched or inspired. Like all those people who’s names are in history books, have a day named after them, or Google commemorates on their birthday. But really not many people care about them. How many people do you remember out of your school history book? Probably only the really big ones like George Washington and Martin Luther King, Jr. But in 1000 years not many people are even going to remember what those guy even did, so what chance do us average Joes have on making a mark on the world…. slim to none. We’ll be remembered  by the people we touched, but when they die we will be forgotten.

It is like etching “I Was Here” in a stone in the forest. Oh, etched in stone, it’s not going anywhere. But then after years of rainfall and blizzards the stone has eroded into nothing but dust. it was like you were never there to begin with. What about books? Those last for a long time and probably will keep being read long in the future. Well, how many books or parchments do you read from 2500 BC. huh? that was only a few thousand years ago, what will our books be like in a few thousand years from now? Same thing. The truth is we will all be forgotten. There is no debating it, the world will forget the individual. The world will spin with or without you. I know that these are some grueling and sad sort of thoughts, but I just had to write them because that’s what I think. So forgive my pessimism on the subject, I don’t want to ruin your day. It just makes me sad that lots of people spend their entire lives trying to make a mark on the world, a legacy that will extend forever, but ultimately their work will not be remembered.

Maybe the people that live for the present have an idea about living, they don’t want to think about the future because it will happen no matter what they do. They don’t necessarily want to make a lasting mark on the world. I wish I could think that way sometimes, but I like to think about the future. And contrary tall the things I’ve written above, I do want to make a mark on the world. I just realize that that mark will eventually be erased. There are two different marks (well technically three) marks I could leave.  Take a marker on a white broad. It could be a dry or wet erase, a regular colored marker or a permanent marker. One is easily erased, one takes awhile and effort to erase, and one will mark the board forever and cause the board to be replaced. It’s up to me  to decide which marker to use, sure the board will be clean and white again eventually, but my mark will decide how much effort it will take to remove it. (A little hint: I it is the same as the make you leave in world. it will eventually be forgotten, but it’s up to you how long it will take to be forgotten).

So here it is:

Kaley

Who was she?

I want to be seen as someone who thought original thoughts, someone who took the road less traveled.

I want to have helped and made a connection with as many people as humanly possible in my life.

I want to be known for not only being great at something, but also be remembered as being a great person.

I want to know that one person, somewhere, anywhere, was positively impacted by my actions; that one person’s life was changed because of me.

I want a lot of things but it is up to me to fulfill them. And when I die, because I know I will, I want to be able to think “I have done the best I can for those around me. I have been the best person I could be, and I am proud of my life.”

I want to leave a hand print that some one will find and wonder who left it.

Handprint

 

*I know this was kind of sad to think about, but I kind of needed to say it, write it all out. You know just to get it out of my head. Don’t think to much on it, there are more pressing thins to think about.

Picture cited: Me