Tumbleweeds are more interesting than they are generally portrayed. If you have ever watched an old western, a cartoon, or even read a picture book as a child, you might have noticed that tumble weeds often show up in boring or dull situations. The plants are usually shown to amplify the lack of action or excitement in any given situation. I have never really wondered much about tumbleweeds since they were always just part of the scenery, but these rolling balls of crabgrass are actually in a sense the fruit of a plant. Tumbleweeds are a part of a plant that breaks off at the stem, and rolls about with some help from the wind. These rolling weeds spread about seeds or spores in order to propagate its species over a large area. Tumbleweeds are interesting because of the fact that, unlike many other plants, they are a group that is quite active in its reproduction process. Tumbleweeds aren’t the only plants that use wind to aid their reproduction, but the way spread over vast regions with their rolling methods, is an ingenious way to stretch the usefulness of a gust. Tumbleweeds are probably not the most interesting types of plants, but they are certainly not as boring as they are regularly shown to be. As a child, I always thought a tumbleweed was just a big useless ball of dirt and grass rolling in the desert, I now know that, while they may not be much, they are still useful, and very important to the life of a plant.
Have you ever come to a point where you know you have to start over, but you have put in too much work to really consider the move? Every once in a while we are faced with circumstances that are complicated, to say the least, and our only choices are to continue trudging through the muck of a terrible situation, or to turn back seemingly to start over. I tend to be the type of person who just won’t quit, even when the chips are stacked against me I like to see a battle through. While it is not fun fighting a losing battle, it is immensely rewarding to come away with a success after it seemed like it was impossible to win. Past victories in the face of defeat are why tenacious individuals press on even when it seems they can not win, but even when you are just being resilient, pride can cause ultimate defeat. There is a difference between being resilient and prideful, and those who can distinguish between the two know when it means they must turn around before they can come back to face a situation differently. Sometimes making a 180 does not mean quitting, when you turn away from a situation it is to come back with a better solution. Even in war, the term retreat does not mean to give up, it is a tactic used to escape with enough resources to win the war at a later time, when you have sured up your strategy. Everyone needs to take the time to evaluate all of the obstacles they face in life, if a battle is too hard, perhaps taking a 180 on the situation to regroup is the best course of action, and the fastest way to ultimate victory.
I always wonder why people have so much hate for rainy days, there is nothing so terrible about seeing water falling from the sky. Rain is something that has been enjoyed and even revered for centuries, it signifies new beginnings and also growth. In recent times rain has been given a bad name due to the fact that it often comes with clouds and also because it usually means plans have been cancelled. Many sporting events, parades, and festive outings are either postponed or completely ruined by the presence of rain, but in my opinion, events can be enhanced by a little intervention form Mother Nature. I love rain, I mean, I wouldn’t want rain on my wedding day, but I just really enjoy walking around in the rain. I feel like the streets are more peaceful in the rain, especially in the city since people try to avoid it. On a rainy day I don’t feel mopey or down, I like to look at a rainy day as a chance to enjoy a pseudo private tour of a park or wherever I may be exploring for the day. Rain doesn’t always have to mean plans are ruined, as they say “when life gives you lemons…” It is best to look at rain as a chance to modify plans and probably explore new things. Today, on this rainy Sunday, rather than staying in, try taking a walk in the park, it is much more peaceful in the rain.
The suffering man ought really to consume his own smoke; there is no good in emitting smoke till you have made it into fire.
It is difficult to go through tough times, but for whatever reason it is a requirement of life. One would be fortunate to live a life free of difficulty, and I’m certain that it is an impossibility. In this quote the writer is speaking about keeping your own smoke in and by smoke I would say he is referring to emotion. This quote can be seen in two ways, on the one hand it can be seen as you should keep your problems to yourself and not let them burden others, on the other hand and my interpretation of this is that you can share your burdens, just don’t let them become a larger problem due to your lack of action. Some people take a difficult situation and let it upset them, they in turn take that anger out on others in their lives, a series of events that always leads to more undue sorrow. The smoke in this quote is anger, it is better to consume the anger, in that you work on it, rather than let it run amuck in your life and relationships. It is much better to contain a smoky situation than to extinguish a flame. Difficulties are part of life, and the trials of life are not what defines an individual, it is how they are handled that shows true character. Whenever you find yourself in a tough situation, it is good to go to friends to ask for help, just don’t wait until you reach a point in which the small problem has become an uncontrollable flame.
The Knicks have done it again, they have managed to take what should be an exciting day for fans and make it stressful. As a Knick fan, I have resigned to the fact that they are bad, and that they are not necessarily known for making good decisions but they had a legitimate chance to make a big splash in last nights draft. This year’s draft class was not particularly strong, but there were a few players that seemed to be “game changers,” and the Knicks may have failed to grab one of them. The Knicks did the unthinkable and drafted European born player, Kristaps Porzingis, with the fourth overall pick much to the dismay of the entire city. Porzingis is very talented and might possibly be the best player in this draft, but New York fans want big flashy talent, and immediate results. The problem with drafting a foreign player is their lack of familiarity with the American style of basketball, and when they are picked this high in the draft, they almost always fail to live up to the hype. I am an upset fan, but at the same time, part of me fully expected the Knicks to somehow draft this guy. I really hope the Knicks management knows what they are doing, and that they make plans for this kid’s success. There is now a city worth of pressure on the shoulders of this 19 year old, and if he fails to deliver, the Knicks may not see relevance for another 10 years.
Today is the day of the NBA draft, it is the second most popular draft in American sports, and I am something of a sports fanatic so I have been fully drawn into the hype. Much like the NFL draft, this is an event in which dozens of young adults are made instant millionaires with the calling of their name. There is no science to the NBA draft, I mean, scouts study and interview players for months before naming a pick, but often times NBA draft picks just don’t pan out. On average, it seems as though only 8 out of the 60 players drafted in a single NBA draft actually make an impact in the league. The low percentage of success in the NBA for draft picks can be unnerving to a struggling franchise, so it pays to have the first pick in the draft, but even that is not a sure thing. Many notable players were passed on by the team choosing first, including Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and Kevin Durant, and while there are some greats chosen first overall, the NBA draft is always full of surprises. This year is the first year in a long time that Knicks fans like myself have something to look forward to, as the Knicks actually own a top five pick. The Knicks have been known for their years of boneheaded picks and terrible management, but that could all change in an instant. The Knicks have expressed a desire to draft Duke Center, Jahlil Okafor with their pick, but it seems like the fourth pick owned by the Knicks may be too high to grab the highly touted freshman. I would love to see the Knicks draft a versatile player like D’angelo Russell, but if he too is not available, they may find themselves making another boneheaded Knicks move. I am pretty excited about tonight’s draft, I have my hopes set high for a positive move by the Knicks, I just don’t want to see my dreams dashed by more of the team’s poor management decisions.
Yesterday’s blog about super heroes got me thinking about the upcoming super hero movie, Ant-Man, and that reminded me of the spectacular insect that is the ant. The ant is a bug that is both hated and admired for its industrial nature and ingenuity. While almost all people would consider ants pests, it has to be said that they are quite brilliant in their own way. Ants have the ability to make a living in almost any setting, and due to their codependent nature their species has been able to thrive and stay safe even in more hostile territories. Ants are the most common single animal on almost every continent, as they hold a disproportionate percentage of the total biomass in any given ecosystem, and that total is based only on the number of species we known to man. Humans can probably learn much about community interaction from ants, since they are so productive as a unit, but theses animals don’t communicate the way we do. I sometimes like to wonder what the world would be like if humans communicated like ants or other organisms. If we used chemicals and smells in order to convey our desires and needs, would we be more productive? I know as humans, we waste plenty of time trying to figure out what others are trying to say, but I guess that’s just one of the tradeoffs of being more complex than insects. I could probably go on and on about these bugs from their immense strength to body ratio to their interesting breeding methods, but the fact of the mater is I get pretty grossed out by bugs so I will leave it at that. Ants are amazing creatures with plenty of applications that are beneficial to mankind, and as long as they stay out of our living spaces, I’m sure more people would be able to form a respect for these interesting creatures.
Every once in a while, my friends and I get into random conversations, and most recently we got into a discussion about what we would choose as our top three most desirable super powers. Whenever super powers are discussed, it seems like most people are quick to choose the powers of Superman, powers like flight, super strength, and super speed, but I think those are pretty cliché and things would probably get boring quickly. If I honestly had the choice of three powers, I would choose the ability to control time, invincibility, and probably super strength. I always felt like, if super powers were real and if I was given the ability, I would use my super human talents to help others. It would probably be easier to be a villain, but I think I would have too much of a guilty conscience to be able to freely use abilities for evil purposes. The powers I chose were kind of a mixed bag, but the answers a person gives to the question of what abilities they would choose, can tell a lot about their character. Now, there is nothing scientific about this assumption, I just believe that there are some abilities that can only be used for personal gain or betterment. Abilities like mind control probably could be useful in helping others, but I’m certain that most people would use that ability to get whatever they want, before even trying to figure out how it can help others. I don’t base my decision to be friends with a person on their answers to this playful query, but I would say it is a fun question to ask others, just to see if you can get a glimpse into who they are from their answers. Humans in general are pretty transparent, no matter what we try to hide, it ends up showing through in our actions or behaviors. Try asking friends this super power question, you may not be so surprised with their answers.
Dope was an interesting movie to say the least. I went into the theatre expecting to see a slightly cheesy comedy, but I was met by an interesting drama with some surprising social commentary. This film follows a young African American boy named Malcolm as he navigates life as an intelligent young man in the “hood.” Malcolm is faced with many trials and circumstances that are uncommon to an average high schooler, but he manages to use his intelligence to his benefit and get the best out of his environment without compromising himself. The writing in this film was brilliant, with enough humor mixed into the story to keep me laughing, but not so much that it detracted from the serious issues of the drama. The story flowed seamlessly and the characters in the film were all connected in unique ways that kept each scenario interesting and relevant. This movie had a very satisfying ending, and while some elements were slightly outlandish, the film asked serious questions about our country and how we view culture. This movie had quite a bit of vulgarity, so I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone under 18, but it was definitely well written, and perfect if you want to watch a thought provoking narrative of the life of the youth of America.
Dads get a pretty bad rap nowadays, I understand that there are many bad men who leave women with their children, but Father’s Day is not for them. Father’s Day is for real fathers, the guys who know who their children are. I just had to start with that because, over the past few years, I have seen postings over social media belittling Father’s Day due to the fact that some mothers raise their children alone. I respect single mothers and know they work very hard but today is for the fathers, the ones who do their job. The job of a father is an interesting one, especially in humans, a father is tasked with teaching their son to be a man, and also with teaching their daughter what a man is. In most species on this planet fatherhood is just a means to proliferate the species, but with humans fatherhood is more than just the physical act of producing progeny, it is also about rearing them correctly. Fatherhood is a difficult job, yet many men have taken up this task and done magnificently, so I would like to salute my dad and the great dads out there who have worked hard and raised generations of children aspiring to follow in their footsteps.