April 2013 archive

The World Through a Filter

As a 90s kid I can remember a time before cell phones became necessary. I played outside for hours until the setting sun let me know it was time to go home and when I went out to eat with my friends, no one was snapping pictures of their food.  As I got older cell phones and computers became more prominent; it was exciting and Iljklhlih was able to learn along with the new advances, where as those a few years older than me were pretty lost. Having experienced the best of both worlds, I often times catch myself yearning for that time when I wasn’t so reliant on my phone, and I still cringe when I walk past a dinner table filled with brightly lit iPhones instead of vibrant conversation. In a lot of ways being glued to your cell phone can be a really negative thing, but when I truly think about it, maybe it’s not so bad.

While some people may write Instagram off as being just another social network, I think it’s a lot more than that.  A quick scroll through my Instagram feed usually offers me uniquely filtered pictures of various items – a flower in bloom, a chocolate cupcake, a cute dog. It seems very ordinary, boring even, but it’s actually allowed us to see the world in a different way.  We have suddenly noticed how ascetically pleasing our breakfast looks and the beautiful way the sun peaks out between skyscrapers. More and more people in essence are – stopping to smell the flowers (or take a picture of them at least). I’m not sure many people were doing that before Instagram became such a big part of our social networking. So yes, the art of face to face conversation may be getting lost between the characters on our keypads, but it’s important to look at the bright side of it all because it seems there’s no turning back now.

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Positive Influence

ImageMost people know Mackelmore for his radio hit “Thrift Shop“, but lately I have been listening to a lot more of his music, and I am truly inspired. Most of his music has a lot more meaning than “Thrift Shop”, and it bothers me that this is the only song of his that the radio will put on the air, but I’m not surprised.

ImageThe first song that turned me on to the rest of his music is “Same Love” which is about marriage equality. Mackelmore starts off the song with admitting that he once thought he was gay, “When I was in the third grade I thought that I was gay because I could draw, my uncle was, and I kept my room straight“, he goes on to say how being gay has so many stereotypes, but it’s not really so clear cut, it’s not a decision someone makes as the “right wing politicians” think it is.

While I haven’t had the chance to listen to every song, most of his other music is about his struggle with alcoholism. This really hits home for me as I have seen loved ones struggle with it and I’m growing up in a time where many of my peers abuse prescription drugs, which Mackelmore also talks about in his songs. In his song “Otherside” Mackelmore specifically calls out Lil’ Wayne for his “purple drank”, but he does it in a way that doesn’t put anyone down. “This is not Californication, there’s no way to glorify this pavement, Syrup, Percocet, and an eighth a day will leave you broke, depressed, and emotionally vacant. Despite how Lil Wayne lives, it’s not conducive to being creative“.

Another song that I really took to was “A Wake” which is about the current generation in general. The line that gets to me everytime is when he says, “I grew up during Reaganomics, when Ice T was out there on his killing cops shit or Rodney King Imagewas getting beat on and they let off every single officer, and Los Angeles went and lost it. Now every month there is a new Rodney on Youtube, it’s just something our generation is used to“. What gives me chills is how right he is. How often have we seen a video of a cop abusing their power on youtube, but what have we done to stop it? I know it’s hard to compete with and there are a lot of problems that need to be dealt with in this world, but what’s important is that we don’t forget them. I think that Mackelmore, and other rappers like him, should be on the radio more than the rappers that encourage young kids to smoke and drink. Mackelmore is a positive figure who makes it look cool to be free from alcohol, his raps tell it like it is, and that’s something that’s rare today- but kids need it.

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What happened in Boston on Monday is so heartbreaking. It’s scary to say, but it’s beginning to feel like there’s no place safe anymore; shootings at elementary schools, in movie theaters, and explosions at a marathon. Lately, I’ve been really wrapped up in my own life, stressing over school and problems with my relationship, but events like this remind me of what’s most important in life. Though it’s hard at times, I’m going to make a conscious effort to remember that life is short, we never know how long we have. It’s important that we try to live everyday like it’s our last, love as much as we can, and be grateful for all that we have.

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Meat Free Meat

A big question I get about being vegetarian is whether I not I miss eating meat or not. Overall the answer to that question is “no”. However, I do get rare cravings for one particular item: chicken nuggets. Luckily for me, supermarkets carry meat substitutes that are tasty and satisfying. Here are my recommendations of my favorite meatless meat items!

1. Quorn chicken nuggets. I have tried a few different brands of fake chicken andImage this is by far the best, especially if you take the time to put them in the oven! ( I also love this brands chicken cutlets, they have one with cheese underneath the crust mm!)

2. Quorn Meatballs. Okay, so I really like this brand. I was really hesitant to try meat free meatballs but to my surprise they were delicious! I literally couldn’t stop eating them and they are a great addition to a quick pasta!

3. Lightlife Smartdogs. Veggie hotdogs sound gross, I know, but trust me they are great!Image They are my favorite thing to bring to barbeques when everyone else is eating hamburgers and real hotdogs. A few of my (very against being vegetarian) guy friends have tried these and approved (secretly of course haha).

4. Smashburger’s Veggie burger. So I know this isn’t a do it yourself one but I have tried a lot of veggie burgers from a lot of different places and I have to say that this is my favorite. ImageThe best part is that it’s customizable. I like mine with avocados!

5. EVOL burritos. These are delicious and quick! Make sure you pick up one that’s labeled vegetarian or vegan.

Do you have any favorite vegetarian/vegan items?

xx

        Cait

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Chelsea Market

The other day I traveled into the city with a friend who was Imagelooking for some cool spots to take photos for class. We (accidentally) ended up near Chelsea Market and The High Line. I have been to The High Line once before and I loved it, but this time it was a little too cold to be up there. However, once it’s warmer I definitely recommend it! It’s this old railroad that they have converted into a beautiful walkway filled with great views of the city and lovely gardens. After that we explored Chelsea Market for a bit and it was amazing! I can’t believe I haven’t been here before. You walk in and it’s almost like you’re in another world. I wish I had taken more pictures but I will definitely be going back, so that’s okay. Anyways, if you Imagehaven’t been here and you are looking to kill some time you should check it out. There are restaurants, small shops, and just a lot of people watching! I was really excited when I saw a place that made crepes (my guilty pleasure)! I got nutella and banana yum!

xx

Cait

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