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Of Quirks and Quarks

Published February 11, 2015 by Jess Arwen
Inspired by the Daily Prompt First Light , “Remember when you wrote down the first thought you had this morning? Great. Now write a post about it.”

Quirk

noun \ˈkwərk\
: an unusual habit or way of behaving
: something strange that happens by chance

Quark
noun \ˈkwrk, ˈkwärk\
physics : any one of several types of very small particles that make up matter

This morning, one of my first thoughts revolved around Terry Pratchett’s Discworld collection of satirical fiction.  Since my boyfriend introduced me to his hilarious and out-of-the-box perspective on life, I’ve devoured every book I could get my hands on.  My dad and I discussed Pratchett’s way of creating sense from nonsense.  Now you know one of my quirks.  In order to tie this back to quarks, you must first meet my closest friends.

Shawn– he’s the comic book master of our group.  He always wears either Captain America or Green Arrow paraphernalia as they are his favourites from Marvel and DC respectively.  Shawn also enjoys most science-fiction movies and television, such as Star Wars, Star Trek (all of them from the original series, to Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager, and Enterprise, as well as the movies), Stargate (all series and movies), Eureka, Doctor Who, the list goes on.  This is obviously a quirk we share.

Kate– she enjoys the Marvel and DC movies and comics, like Shawn.  Kate is also a brilliant Psychology major and could tell you anything you wanted to know about that.  She finds Criminal Justice fascinating, so she is an expert on most of the Criminal/Detective television series.  She and Shawn typically watch them together, but Kate is the ultimate expert.  I enjoy the same series, but not with as much gusto as them.

Luke– is a History and English double-major.  Thus, he knows about every war and the motivations that began each war, but he also is aware of the times of peace, since that is when most art develops, and literature in abundance.  I am also an English major, so we enjoy discussing the classics.  Then, when we’re together with everyone, we apply classical forms to analyse all our favourite television series, movies, comics, or anything else we find.

As you can see, we all have our own quirks, and these quirks brought us together to be the nerd herd that we have come to love so fondly.  In our group, these quirks set us apart from each other, but the quirks allow us to create a greater net of nerdy knowledge.  These quirks are our quarks.  While quarks are the pieces that comprise subatomic particles like protons and neurons, our quirks comprise parts of our personality that comprise part of us as a whole.

What quirks are your quarks?

No Need for My Wishes

Published July 6, 2014 by Jess Arwen


From The Daily Post’s Generous Genies: Remember those lovely genies who grant wishes? Well, you’re one and you’ve just been emancipated from your restrictive lamp. You can give your three wishes to whomever you want. Who do you give your three wishes to, and why?

If I had three wishes to give, I’d want to give them to someone who could do something useful them: change the world, in fact. Yet who out of everyone who has lived to this point in our history books could possibly possess the knowledge, wisdom, grace, and love sufficient to actually do good for this world instead of making it ten times worse?

Think about it. There exist so many stories of genies who twist people’s wishes in order to teach them to be grateful. If you wish to jump high, they turn you into a frog. If you wish to be different, they give you warts and boils. These stories all support the adage, “Be careful what you wish for.” Thus, the perfect recipient of these wishes must know how to perfectly articulate what precisely is the wish.

Next, the recipient must also be wise enough to put the correct articulations into action to change the world instead of simply wishing selfishly to have money. They must have grace to see the faults in the world and still find it worth their wishes for betterment, but grace in fact to not change its essence. What would we be if someone wished we were all nice to each other? We’d probably be insincere. Plus, it wouldn’t be any fun anyways.

Finally, the recipient of my three wishes must have love enough to truly want each and every one of us to be better than ourselves, and they must love us so much that they’d want us to love each other as much as they love us! Could you follow that one? If I love the world so much I’d want to alleviate its pain, I’d want all the other people to love their colleagues enough to do the same.

Who, then, is fit for my wishes?

No president has had perfect politics. No mom has raised her children without problems (although, you moms are doing a great job, so keep it up!). No dads, no teachers, no mentors, no scholars…no one is fit for these wishes. Well, except one. I figure since it’s Sunday, it isn’t too pushy to bring the name Jesus Christ into this one. If there is anyone fit to bear my wishes who would love the world enough to save it from itself, who would give us grace enough to not deserve it, who would be intelligent enough to not mess it up, and who would be wise enough to put His knowledge into action, it’s Him. Luckily, He already saved the world.

He has no need for my wishes, but if I had them, I’d give them to Him, since He knows what to do even without them. I’ll thank the Lord for that everyday!

Distant Memories

Published July 5, 2014 by Jess Arwen


Somehow inspired by The Daily Post’s An Odd Trio: Today, you can write about whatever you what — but your post must include, in whatever role you see fit, a cat, a bowl of soup, and a beach towel.

If you’ve ever been in a long-distance relationship, you understand how tough it can be not being able to be with your significant other for months at a time.  Sometimes you don’t know when you’ll see your best friend again. Oddly enough, missing Ted has as much to do with a cat (or six cats), a bowl of soup, a beach towel, and as many other random things as you can think of.

For the first part, I used to hate cats. They scratch, bite, and are usually pretty antisocial. My dislike for them, however, had to change the first time I visited my boyfriend at his house. Since his mom works at a Vet Hospital, she comes across a lot of unwanted animals who need a good home, so she takes them in. Thus, the first time I visited Ted (and stayed for a few days), I had to get used to being surrounded by cats.

He may have actually turned me into a crazy cat lady, but I guess that’s a post for another day! Of his family’s cats though, I do have my favourites, and if they ever wanted to get rid of a cat or two, I’d take them without a second thought!

When you’re in a long distance relationship, you may not get to see each other often, but you get the chance to send each other packages! Ted sends me the sweetest care packages when I’m sick, full of chicken noodle soup shaped like my favourite cartoon characters, and it’s close to him being there to nurse me back to health.
It means a lot that he sends me soup and other get well foods! Whenever I sip on a bowl of soup now, I think of him (as if I’m not thinking of him already!).

One GREAT thing about long distance is that you can plan vacations to meet each other halfway! Our last vacation was spent at the beach, which was the first time I’d been since I was little, so instead of simply chilling on a beach towel trying to get a tan, we dug a giant hole in the sand. It was so deep that I could stand up straight in it and not see out the top. Then, we built a fortified castle wall around it and had a blast! A couple of our friends were with us, so they all buried me in the hole (with my head sticking out). It was the most fun I’d had in a long time.

Luckily, with distance, you always have amazing memories of your significant other. It’s almost easier than always being together. When you don’t get much time together, you don’t get much time to fight, so virtually all your memories of the other person are happy ones! Though distance is difficult and depressing at times, it also teaches us that love certainly has nothing to do with your proximity to your special one. It’s most definitely about the kinds of long-distance memories you have with them.

Just Accept It

Published July 4, 2014 by Jess Arwen

From The Daily Post’s It’s Your Party: Since many are marking their country’s “birthday” in the US today, we wanted to ask: How do you celebrate yours? Are you all for a big bash, or more of a low-key birthday boy/girl?

I’ve always dreaded birthdays. It’s not ’cause I’m getting older either; I actually love that part, but I simply always shied away from celebrating something I had almost nothing to do with. My mom was the one who did all the work the day I was born, so why are we celebrating me?

Last year, we spent my birthday on vacation at my grandparents’ house. They’re determined to keep believing I’m somewhere around the age of seven, so I definitely did not look forward to it. When the day came, I acted like a brat and moped around. Nothing would make me happy.

We went to see a movie. We went to my favourite restaurant. We had my favourite cake. My family even gave me presents I loved, but I was determined to be depressed. I broke my grandparents’ hearts. Since their only grandchildren (including me) live so far away, it’s not often they get to celebrate birthdays with their family, and I ruined this one chance. It ate at me for so long that when my next birthday arrived, I decided not to be a grump about it.

Maybe I got a big ego about it too, but I loved being the center of attention for a day! It’s actually a lot easier to just go with other people’s plans for your birthday than to force your way on others. Luckily, we only celebrated with my immediate family, so most of the pressure was off anyways. It’s a whole lot easier to smile for a day than to frown. Plus, you feel a lot better about it in retrospect. I figure, if we’re all stuck here together, we might as well make each other as happy as possible. Thus, I will just accept it when people say “Happy Birthday” to me!