High-Strung

The trials of the high-strung person are so vividly captured in another one of Lev Yilmaz’s super-relatable Tales of Mere Existence.

It’s worse if you were raised to keep it quiet. Then when you can’t, and because you’ve been taught to keep it quiet you also have no idea how to express it all in a way that makes sense to anyone, your friends and family have no idea why you’re suddenly freaking out and all fronts of being a calm, cool, collected person go out the door.

Coping mechanisms?

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Poverty and Food Stamps

I found this interesting little chain of videos about the affects of poverty on the mind and food stamps. As someone whose family whose circumstances once warranted the use of food stamps, the amount of prejudice I’ve encountered over the years is staggering. My mother was pretty obviously not a welfare queen and there was no one waiting in those offices that even came close to the image that’s stuck in someone’s mind for a reason.

How Poverty Changes Your Brain:

How Food Stamps Work: 

What Living on Food Stamps is Really Like: 

Kind Bars are Under Fire

http://www.businessinsider.com/kind-bars-under-fire-from-fda-2015-4

They aren’t health and safety issues, thankfully! But Kind Bars simply aren’t as “healthy” as they claim to be according to the FDA (but honestly, who really thought they were super healthy anyway? They’re so sweet!) and some of the labeling is off-kilter. Simply writing “peanut butter” or “mixed fruits” doesn’t seem to legally cover it; which if you’re looking to avoid things like corn syrup that can be found in a lot of “peanut butter coatings” should be something you’re wary of.

Your Kind Fruit & Nut Almond & Apricot, Kind Fruit & Nut Almond & Coconut, Kind Plus Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate + Protein, and Kind Plus Dark Chocolate Cherry Cashew + Antioxidants products are misbranded within the meaning of section 403(r)(1)(A) of the Act [21 U.S.C. § 343(r)(1)(A)] because the product labels bear nutrient content claims, but the products do not meet the requirements to make such claims.

The FDA lists phrases that the company uses that it maybe shouldn’t, including:

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P.F. Chang’s is being sued over its gluten-free menu

https://www.yahoo.com/health/why-p-f-changs-is-being-sued-over-its-109996603802.html

This is a departure from what I normally write about, but I just wanted to write that this is a stupid issue. Having an allergy is not a disability. No one’s holding a gun to your head when you choose to visit an establishment. If you’re struggling to save money because of your out-of-house food choices, you should probably reassess the value of those choices. If you can’t afford the restaurant’s having to buy and house completely separate (and more expensive! I’ve cooked gluten-free before, it seems like a really expensive allergy to have just in general) ingredients and equipment to prepare food you can eat, then you should probably stay home.

Cooking’s fun, and cooking teachers are ubiquitous. Maybe Ms. Phillips should watch some more Youtube videos.

Anne can help!

Updates!

A lot of things happened in a fairly short period of time, so let’s get to it:

  • I’m starting my job with Kelly Weiner on Wednesday!
  • I interviewed for a few smaller, unpaid gigs and so far have gotten one positive response back; if I get a second positive response, that means I’m doing 6 classes, and what basically amounts to two and a half jobs this semester. If everything goes well, I’ll be Update: I AM working with Kelly Weiner, Lynxsy, and Fuse Marketing! Yay! I want this. I’ve got this. I wish I was getting paid more, haha. I want responses from bigger companies offering paid gigs and I’m trying to keep my head up.
  • I’m trying to organize my next Surrender to Chance pack into coherent reviews, and I might include a few scents I found along the way! Still trying to find the time and energy to go to the city for another perfume day. Soon!
  • I’m starting to dance again with a new/old group of friends. This makes me really freaking happy, because I feel like I haven’t danced in a while, and new friends is exactly what I needed. I have to up my focus though; I didn’t continue dancing almost solely as a result of my inability to focus, and the embarrassment that comes with not knowing what I was doing. Changing geographical locations isn’t a real excuse; I could always find another studio or another class when I moved around. I want to actually practice this time around.
  • Perhaps I’ll even lose a little weight in the process. I ordered some new earbuds and am going to make a concentrated effort to actually hit the gym. In the meantime, I’ll just continue dancing, stretching, and doing some push-ups or something in my room.
  • To that end, I’m also trying to eat cleaner. I’m trying not to go out as much (also because I want to move), and when I do, to choose things like fish and clear soups and salads. There’s no soda, or even juice in my dorm room, and that’s for the best right now. Cutting down on the sugar I’d be chugging.
  • I’m taking a little time for myself. I just want to have fun right now. I very, very recently got out of a relationship and I’m trying to be strong in areas I wasn’t before.

Life Update

Things I wanted to mention about my life:

– Finally getting off my ass and applying to jobs. I feel like I’ll be able to pick up the pace soon. Revved for success and all that jazz. My current desire to use all of the buzzy idioms I know is indicative of this mindset change. Also, I finally care about school this year after like, a month and a half of being here. Maybe it’s because I’m getting closer to the balance I want. I have to set a few more boundaries, and maybe let a few more things go, but overall I’m less stressed than I was earlier this year.

– I want to start making music again, effective immediately when I have time. The last piece I finished was last year, and that’s depressing.

– I’m getting a new phone soon, thank god. I am increasingly feeling unable to deal with my phone, especially since I’m expected to constantly be connected. My boyfriend wants me to get the Moto G, and I actually really like it so I might do that.

Pretty!

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How we all miss the point on school shootings

How we all miss the point on school shootings

How We All Miss the Point on School Shootings

But this “witch hunt” we go through every time a school shooting happens is a total ruse. Elliot Rodger didn’t become a killer because he was a misogynist; he became a misogynist because he was a killer. Just like Eric Harris didn’t become a killer because he loved violent video games; he loved violent video games because he was a killer. Just like Adam Lanza didn’t become a killer because he loved guns; he loved guns because he was a killer.

Not going to lie, while I enjoyed this editorial and I resonate with many of its ideas, the solution he proposes is so, so much easier said than done. Most of us have grown up shutting out those in pain because there were just so many of those in pain that it would put us in suffering to even acknowledge all of them. Or at the very least, that’s what we were told by those guiding us through life. That you can’t help everybody. That you can’t touch everyone. If someone shoots up a school, goes on a stabbing, commits suicide, then ultimately, that was on them.

I’m reminded of “Riley Rewind”, which was a webseries written and directed by Ray William Johnson and Anna Akana.

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Greek mythology helps veterans fight PTSD

Greek mythology helps veterans fight PTSD

Ajax Defending Greek Ships Against Trojans (Bettmann/CORBIS)

PTSD and all of the polarizing emotions of going into and coming out of war is a struggle not recognized enough.

I am heartened by this sharing of stories and communication between those who understand. I think it’s a great step towards openly talking about mental illness and the effects of trauma. In all aspects of mental illness, I think the emphasis on being open, aware, and understanding is one of the best ways to help someone towards recovery.

Our veterans are routinely silenced, either by their own fear of disappointment, or by the well-meaning who believe it isn’t good to dwell on bad things. And just to reiterate:

  • “57,849 veterans are homeless on any given night.”
  • 12% of the homeless adult population are veterans
  • 20% of the male homeless population are veterans
  • 68% reside in principal cities
  • 32% reside in suburban/rural areas
  • 51% of individual homeless veterans have disabilities
  • 50% have serious mental illness
  • 70% have substance abuse problems
  • 51% are white males, compared to 38% of non-veterans
  • 50% are age 51 or older, compared to 19% non-veterans
  • “In addition to the complex set of factors influencing all homelessness – extreme shortage of affordable housing, livable income and access to health care – a large number of displaced and at-risk veterans live with lingering effects of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and substance abuse, which are compounded by a lack of family and social support networks. Additionally, military occupations and training are not always transferable to the civilian workforce, placing some veterans at a disadvantage when competing for employment.”
  • “The most effective programs for homeless and at-risk veterans are community-based, nonprofit, “veterans helping veterans” groups. Programs that seem to work best feature transitional housing with the camaraderie of living in structured, substance-free environments with fellow veterans who are succeeding at bettering themselves.”

National Coalition for Homeless Veterans

“We Just Can’t Have You Here”

“We Just Can’t Have You Here”

This describes why I am going to wait until I have a larger, and steady income to get treatment for myself.

My freshman year went down about the same way, except I’m not a self-harmer, so the events manifested themselves differently. I was pushed out of my room, and then pushed out entirely. I kind of wish I cared more, in a way, about the school like the author did. I guess it’s better that I never created an attachment to it though, because what happened just made me angry, and didn’t devastate me.