Monday, December 17, 2012


Location(s): Work/home
Listening to: Sports Center (or some ESPN type sports show thing)

It isn't often that I trot out my personal beliefs and rant about controversial things on here. In fact, I don't think I've ever done that before. But today I read some things that really made my blood boil, and I believe that using your voice is one of the best ways to bring about change. You may not all agree with me, and I completely understand that. I just hope you respect my beliefs, and if you don't, hopefully we can have a civil conversation about out differences.

Anyway, in case you haven't heard, on Saturday a gay Marine proposed to his partner at the White House. This lovely, adorable, happy story has blown up the internet. Until recently, individuals involved in the U.S. military weren't allowed to be openly gay. And, as many are aware, most states in the U.S. don't allow gay marriage, but the Supreme Court will be hearing cases about the legality of gay marriage and many states are starting to recognize marriage between two men or two women in addition to "traditional" marriage. So it's kind of a wonderful thing that these two men were allowed to express their love openly without any fear of persecution through their jobs or their government.

I hadn't heard about this story until ten minutes ago when a friend shared this photo on Facebook. The photo was originally posted on a group, and, being the curious individual that I am, I decided to read the comments to see what people thought.

What I saw made my heart literally hurt. There was so much negativity. People were ranting that being gay is morally wrong and that these two men will rot in hell. They were saying that God doesn't approve of these men loving each other and that it's wrong that the United States is beginning to legally recognize gay marriage. They were saying that the Marine who proposed had no business being involved in the military, and that he was obviously not a good person because he "chose to be" gay.

I'm not a very religious person, but I was raised in a religious household. Personally, I believe that God doesn't care what love looks like. I think he just wants people to find love and embrace it. I think he would understand that we're born the way we're born. In fact, I know he does. He makes us people we are.

I also strongly disagree with the argument that, because the Bible describes marriage as between a man and a woman, that is the only way it can be. Marriage was around long before Christianity as the religion we know it as today. Pagans who knew nothing of the god that Christians worship celebrated marriage long before the New Testament existed.

If we all followed the Bible to the letter, fathers would be able to sell their wives and daughters like property. Incest would be okay. Eating certain foods that we now eat  all the time would be forbidden.

Especially with all of the tragedy the world has experienced lately, it really upset me to see people being so hateful about something that is supposed to be a happy and beautiful time. Marriage, no matter what religion it is in or what the beliefs are of the people getting married, is a wonderful thing. Knowing you want to spend the rest of your life with someone and loving them so much you never want to spend a day without them is a rare thing. We should be happy for anyone who finds that kind of love.

I think now, more than ever, we need to bite back our negativity and show our love instead. The world is a dark and scary place, but there is still beauty. There is still love. We need to remember that the people we share this world with are also people - not animals, not inanimate objects, but people with thoughts and feelings and lives outside of our own. When we disagree with something, there are ways we can express ourselves and our opinions without being harsh and negative.

Whether or not you believe that gay marriage (or being gay in general) is right, I hope you can still find the happiness in the love stories shared by people who identify themselves as gay. I hope you see that we are all human, and we need to respect and support each other if we ever want to heal this broken world.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Fact: Nice Things Make Me Cry

Location: Work
Listening to: Nothing

Fact: Hearing/reading about people who do extraordinary nice things for complete strangers without any expectation of something in return makes me get teary.

It's easy to forget that nice people still exist. It seems like everyone is motivated by what they can gain by doing things for other people. It seems rare to actually see someone do something nice for someone else just because they want to be nice.

I love seeing things about people who randomly pay for a stranger's meal without them knowing or help a family buy something for their kids, just because they want to. It seriously makes me cry to be reminded that wonderful, kind, loving people still exist, and they want to help others just because they feel like it, or someone else helped them once.

Have you ever heard of Pay It Forward? It's a book/movie about a little boy who is given a class assignment (I think, it's been a while since I've read it) to do something nice for someone else and then tell the class about it. When he did his random act of kindness, he asked the person he helped to pay it forward and help someone else.

This is such an amazing principle. Think of how wonderful the world would be if everyone helped each other and didn't expect to gain anything, but just asked the person to pay it forward and help out someone else.

So, I've got a challenge for you. Try to do something really nice for someone. Don't ask for anything in return, just ask them to pay it forward. The less you know the person you help, the more exciting it will be. And then let me know about your experience! Or, if you've ever helped someone or someone has helped you, tell me about it! I love these stor

Monday, December 3, 2012

Dear Readers; I Am Dead




So, I don't know if you guys saw the latest post on my book blog,* but I found out some really exciting news the other day. I know it's really stupid to swear and it's a display of a poor vocabulary, but honestly, my first thought when I heard was, "HOLY EFFING EFF!!! THIS IS NOT REAL LIFE!!! AHHHH!!!!"

And then I died of excitement.

Why, you may ask? Well, HarperCollins has a website dedicated to books for young adults. It's called Epic Reads. They have all kinds of giveaways, book clubs, and a ton of other nerdy goodness. It's pretty much like Facebook for people aged 12-25 who prefer books over people. Which is amazing.

Well, they sent out a message via social networks earlier last week saying that they were looking for some folks who hasn't read a number of dystopian and paranormal series that they publish who would be willing to read the series in a fairly short time period and blog about their reading experience.

So I filled out the application (which included a question about how you thought the world would end. My belief: chaos followed by giant, benevolent penguins who will save us all) and made a rather silly video and then sat around and completely forgot that I even applied.

On Saturday, I just happened to check my GMail account (which I hardly ever use except for my blogs and when I sign up for things from stores and such) and I had this e-mail that I nearly deleted because it looked like junk.

Only, at the last second, I realized it was from the Epic Reads people.

And they were telling me that I was selected to review one of their series (the Full Moon series by Ellen Schreiber)!

Over 400 people applied to do this, and they only selected 14 (two for each series). So pretty much, I will be blogging on a super cool website through an actual publishing company where hopefully a lot of people will read my reviews and find my blogs and perhaps lead to a job opportunity as a book reviewer and thus fulfilling my life's dream.

You can see why this is pretty much the most exciting thing of my life. And I had to share it with you all!! And now I have to go read a book for school, which should be fun and exciting. But I'll post again soon! Don't you worry! And it won't even be about my book blog next time!

*I almost typed "boob blog," which would have been awkward. And also, sorry for only talking about my book blog here anymore. I'm just really excited about it.