Monthly Archives: February 2017

Lost in London

By Kylie Sheaffer

I have a personal dilemma that I continuously struggle with. I am one of those individuals who is fiercely independent, but also woefully inept at any activity that involves me taking care of myself. I’m normally lost, often wearing dirty clothes, and cannot cook without setting off an alarm. My parents love to joke that I could’ve moved out at age 12 if I hadn’t been so unprepared to face adulthood. There was a moment though, recently, where I came to the realization that my in-between state is OK.

London, England is my favorite place in the world. It’s exciting, busy, and filled with beautiful people who are very interested in everything. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to spend the day there alone last December, and it was a day that changed me and my outlook on adulthood. There are only a few moments in people’s lives where they can pinpoint an exact day where life changed for them, and this was one of mine.

The weather was beautiful. For December in England, there wasn’t a cloud in the sky – truly shocking. I had on a light, fashionable jacket that made me feel a little too confident in myself. I wore shiny boots that were pretty uncomfortable, but made me look like a disco-astronaut. London is filled with unusual styles, and I was bent on fitting into the chaotic fashion of the city.

The trains were on time and the London Underground was running smoothly. I loved the Underground. So much so that my friends bought me a giant map of the tube system that is now hanging on my apartment wall. That day, my first time alone in London ever, I felt slightly nervous having to travel alone, but confident in myself and my knowledge of the city. The London Underground was neutral territory for me, and navigating it served as a nice ego boost. I didn’t get lost at all.

Above ground I walked everywhere. I walked through Covent Gardens, which was decorated for Christmas and looked whimsical. I walked along South Bank and accidentally wandered onto a set for a Japanese commercial. The director even asked me to stay and hold a product for their video. I wish I could tell you what the commercial was for, but unfortunately, I do not speak Japanese. I walked through the government district and past Buckingham Palace. I walked through Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park and even through China Town and Oxford Circus. I felt like the Queen.

I ate lunch alone that afternoon. I rode the tube alone. I walked alone. I took the bus alone. I even saw Les Miserables at the Queen’s Theatre alone. (It was amazing, magical, and mind-blowing, by the way). As an extrovert, I’m normally very dependent on the energy of people around me. I feed off my friends’ laughter and it pushes me to be outgoing and funny and wild. That day, I had none of that. I had myself and the city. I had never been more alone, yet more connected to the world, in my entire life.

For the first time, I was forced into truly being an adult. I had to rely entirely on myself and my ability to get around. I shouldn’t have been afraid, but I was a bit. I didn’t have a phone, or family, or friends to help me get around. I had to follow maps, ask for directions, and trust strangers when they gave me advice.

This forced isolation made me feel fulfilled. Finally, the raging independent side of my personality was being used. It was sitting on a bench, across from Big Ben, where I realized I was fine with being me. I can be strong and successful on my own, and that was an amazing relief.

Sheaffer is a junior broadcast major

The Summer of Change

By Kelli Caldwell

It was another humid day in North Carolina and the people were strolling into the gym for their first day of camp. As a junior studying journalism, she didn’t know what to expect from this experience as a camp counselor. When the campers entered the gym they didn’t see the dust bunnies in the corners or the cracks in the ceiling. Instead, they came in with a smile on their face and a desire to have a fun day at camp.

Camp Ann is a summer camp for people with lifelong mental and physical disabilities. The goal of the camp isn’t to teach them anything, but to show them they can have fun despite having these different disabilities. For something that has such an impact on people’s lives, people might would expect the condition of the camp to look better and have working facilities. These different aspects of the camp encouraged the aspiring journalist to change her career path to public relations. She hoped the change would help her become a part of a nonprofit that would better benefit this community of people.

Camp Ann is a place where people as young as 7 and as old as 75 look forward to all year long. They come to enjoy their community of people and activities during the summer. The disabilities can range from having autism or ADHD, to being restricted to a wheelchair.

At the camp they get to enjoy the first part of the day in the city pool before it’s open to the public. This is a special accommodation the campers enjoy because they get to have the entire pool to themselves. After the pool, the campers usually enjoy lunch, which is provided by the same companies that provide it to public schools. At the City Lake Park there is a carousel and train that the staff takes the campers on for the second half of the day. All of these accommodations are nice, except for the gym.

On days that are too hot the gym doesn’t help them find relief because of its lack of air conditioning. The gym is run on fans alone and this hardly brings relief to the campers or staff. In the gym it’s not just hot but the humidity brings on a heat that people dread. The department of parks and recreations for the city of High Point would move the camp frequently to get the campers out of the heat, which would only cause more of a commotion to their already hectic days. Getting the campers on buses was difficult because of their disabilities. Some times it took up to as much as an hour of the day that they could have otherwise spent doing activities.

The campers did not have the proper equipment and facilities to enjoy their camp all summer long, and this did not sit right with the journalism student. She decided to change her major to something that she could become more involved in an organization, public relations. With the career of public relations she can help a nonprofit organization that benefits people with disabilities.

Seeing the smiles on the campers’ faces as they enjoy the camp despite their disabilities gave her a new perspective on her future career. The way the camp didn’t get the proper facilities and equipment made her want to be more involved in her community, by trying to get them what they need in order to have a successful camp.

It’s important to always keep an open mind when thrown in different situations because those same situations could be the ones that alter your life.

Caldwell is a public relations junior 

Life Lessons From A 14-Year-Old

By Maggie Persons

It’s easy to overlook things that teenagers say. They’re younger and have less worldly experience. Why should they know what they’re talking about? But they are the future of this world and what they say and think shouldn’t be overlooked. This essay will discuss life lessons from a young teenage girl named Sydney Jones. She is in the eighth grade but is much wiser and sassier than she should be. Some of this may be terrible life advice but it is quite amusing to listen to what she believes to be the best advice to succeed in life. So here goes.

Life lesson No 1; never lose an argument. In Jones’s world, losing an argument means that you gave up and didn’t fight hard enough. She believes that you should never back down from an argument no matter what, even if you’re wrong. In the real world, this might not be the best idea. Admitting you are wrong may be seen as a sign of weakness but it is also seen as being confident enough with yourself to be wrong.

Life lesson No. 2; be a bitch 24/7. Jones believes that along with never losing an argument you should act like a bitch to get what you want. It is interesting to see the ways in which the mind of a middle school girl works. There are a lot of mean people out there and to succeed Jones thinks that you have to be the bigger bitch. If you plan on testing this piece of advice out, just know you’ve been warned that it might turn out terribly.

Life lesson No. 3; keeping up Snapchat streaks is a true sign of friendship. For Jones, Snapchat is her main form of communication with friends and peers. A Snapchat streak happens when you and another friend send snaps back and forth for multiple days in a row. Right now, Jones’s longest snap streak has been going on for 490 days. Not replying to someone’s Snapchat and risking losing the streak is something Jones sees as a huge deal. Why even have Snapchat if you don’t keep up your streaks?

Life lesson No. 4; talking to boys is gross, but stalking them on Instagram is fun. Ask any middle school girl about boys and you are likely to get some variation of Sydney’s response. Why talk to boys when you can look at them on Instagram? One time in fifth grade a boy professed his love to Jones in front of the entire grade and that ruined boys for her.

And there you have it. Life lessons from a 14-year-old girl. While they may not help out your life in any way, shape or form, it is interesting to see the world from a teenager’s point of view. Losing an argument basically means that you have lost at life. Being a bitch will get you to the top, Snapchat streaks are a true test of friendship, and boys are gross to talk to but nice to look at.

Persons is a senior public relations major. 

In Loving Memory Of

By Rashaan Anderson

“If you mean something to someone, love someone, if even a single person remembers you, then maybe you never really die at all.” To Rashaan Anderson, this was more than just a quote his girlfriend said, it was motivation to keep going. He learned early in life that nothing in life came easy, love included. But on the fourth of July 2011, she came into his life and things changed for the better.

Hanna Crowe was her name. Even at that age of 20, she was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. She had long, brunette hair, a perfect smile that was brighter than the fireworks and eyes as blue as the ocean itself. The background of the fireworks was a perfect metaphor to describe her: stunning. He knew he had to say something to her before the night ended or else he would never forgive himself. A rush of panic rushed over him as he realized that she was gone from his sight. He looked around and saw her at the “Hamburger Heaven” food stand. He started running through the crowd, feeling like a running back breaking through the defensive line on the way to score the game-winning touchdown.

He was out of breath when he reached the food stand, but he couldn’t let her see that, male pride at it’s finest. Now at this point, there are two people ahead of them in line, and he had to make a choice: play it cool like they do in the movies, offer to pay for her food or just smile and look stupid. The choice was obvious. He pulled out his wallet and couldn’t wait to tell his mother that being cheap does have its advantages. It was her turn to order. As soon as the cashier told her the total, he walked up beside her, offered to pay for her food and gave the cheesiest, dumbest smile ever. The perfect smile appeared on her face and she accepted his “not weird” offer. Not in his wildest dreams, would Anderson have thought that this was the start of meeting the love of his life. But just as quick as it came, it was gone.

On June 28th, 2015, Anderson had just gotten off of work and realized that he had five missed calls from his mother which was never a good sign. He called her back and was sad to hear that his, soon-to-be fiance, had gotten into a bad car accident. He ran to the car and sped to the hospital, which was 5 miles away. He rushed to the elevator and hit the button to go to the sixth floor. The door opened, he turned the corner and saw his and Hanna’s family standing in the waiting room crying. He knew he was too late but didn’t want to believe it until he saw it for himself.

He walked into the room where the love of his life laid motionless. He slumped to the floor with her hand in his and cried uncontrollably. The world was quiet but the T.V. was on and their favorite show was playing: Person Of Interest. Suddenly he heard one of the female characters say: “If you mean something to someone, if you help someone, or love someone, if even a single person remembers you, then maybe you never really die at all.” He looked up at her and smiled realizing that she might be gone physically but never in his heart.

Anderson is a broadcast major senior

Dating in a Social Media Society

By Corinne Doll

It was late at the office and she was starving. Her coworker asked her out for dinner and she had no hesitation in accepting the invitation. As they strolled out of the brick building and down the sidewalk, they discussed the political unrest in America. Somehow this intellect infused conversation turned to the girl’s past. Had she ever been in love? Her answer left him speechless.

“I have never had a boyfriend.”

The look on his face was not inimical, though she felt shame swell up inside her. She wanted so badly to explain that it was not because she was incapable of loving. She loved lots of things — her family, her puppy, breakfast for dinner, a glass of merlot after a long day of work. No, loving was never a problem. It was being loved back. Of course, her family loved her back, as did her puppy and the pancakes she drowned in syrup at night and the merlot that calmly warmed her heart. But a man? Never.

Her coworker’s reaction to her life of solitude was one she was used to. It was always shock. For a long time, she did not quite understand this reception. Relationships seemed so elusive for millennials.

However, that is far from the truth. The opportunity to find a significant other is more present than ever before. Not only can someone meet a match at a bar downtown, but also they can do so online through countless dating apps and social media.

So why is it that a number of adults and millennials alike claim dating is dead? It is not because finding someone interesting is impossible. It is because the act of finding a significant other can be done by looking at a single picture and swiping left or right. It is because a direct message on commonly used social media app, Instagram, is bolder than offering to buy a girl a drink at the bar. It is because of how easy it is to hide behind a phone and comment on looks rather than have a real face-to-face conversation. Gone are the days of deep conversations and feeling fueled by the way someone is and not the way someone looks.

Being single all 21 years of life is not something to be ashamed of. If anything, it reveals a need for a deeper connection with someone. It reveals a desire for someone who brings happiness like breakfast for dinner or warmth like a glass of merlot after a long day of work. Someone who loves unconditionally like a puppy and is honest, open and true like family. That is not something one finds from swiping and “liking.”

Doll is a public relations senior

Oliver Buster Miles

By Morgan Dixon

They really need more professional, alert and caring staff at assisted living communities. Why? Well, Uncle Buster resided at Shady Grove Assisted Living Facility (name changed to protect the not so innocent) from March 2003 to January 2007. Uncle Buster was pretty self-sufficient as far as personal care routines. He could go to the restroom and dress himself by his lonesome.

One day relatives came to visit Uncle Buster, whose real name was Oliver Buster Miles, and there were 12 lamps in his room. Not 13, but exactly 12. He only had one in the room. When asked about the lamps, he said he owned Shady Grove Assisted Living Facility and he could have as many lamps as he wanted to have in his room. The staff then had to be notified and the extra lamps were returned to their owners who were in the dark. Another occasion, Buster was dressed in a Ralph Lauren polo shirt and Calvin Klein jeans – neither of which belonged to him. A stylish thief, to be sure. The staff were baffled at how all these incidents occurred without them having any knowledge.

Another incident was when a relative had left her jacket at Shady Grove Assisted Living. The jacket was her favorite, so a 10 o’clock p.m. there was a trip back to Shady Grove. Upon arrival, the front door was locked… Knock, knock, knock… And after waiting and hearing no noises from inside, the relative tried the side door of the building for entry. It was unlocked and no staff in sight. Very safe, right? Well, Uncle Buster’s room was not too far away, so the jacket was found and the relative left – kindly locking the side door on the way out.

Yes, Shady Grove Assisted Living needs more alert staff. With residents walking around in clothes that were not their own and “borrowing” lamps from others’ room, there did not seem to be much ‘assisting’ going on at the assisted living home. It was called Shady Grove Assisted Living because these folks actually needed the assistance of those staff members so they could continue to live their best lives. And as far as the residents being safe… Well, someone walked straight into the home in the middle of the night, did not see a single staff member or employee, and just walked straight back out of the place. At least, this visitor was just a relative looking for a forgotten jacket. It was not someone there to steal them blind or hurt anyone. So it comes as no surprise that Shady Grove Assisted Living (again name has been changed) is no longer operational.

Oliver Buster Miles was quite the character, that is sure. Shady Grove Assisted Living was not the best place for him to have been, and thankfully his family moved him from there before he unfortunately passed away. But the stories of Shady Grove and Buster’s silly antics will always live on in the hearts of his family. From his need to have 12 lamps in his room, to his new found wardrobe, Uncle Buster will forever be the best memory of Shady Grove.

Dixon is a public relations senior

Lessons Learned From van Pelt

By Katherine Stucky

A half-finished cigarette hung from her lips as she spun around to stir something boiling in a pot on the stove. An old Frank Sinatra album was playing in the living room on her record player. She was one of the few people I knew who still used one regularly to play music in the 21st Century. She started humming along to one of the tunes and swayed around the tiny kitchen. On a shelf on the far wall there was an odd collection of Lucy dolls and images from the Charlie Brown cartoons. The character Lucy was based off of none-other-than my grandmother, Lucy van Pelt.

van Pelt oozed old school swagger from her perfectly coiffed, mile-high blonde beehive down to her ancient yet pristine navy blue Cadillac she would drive when she would pick me up from school. There was always a tin of “cracker candy” in the backseat waiting for me. I would nibble on piece after piece of the candy, which was really just an ordinary saltine cracker covered in chocolate and caramel, while she would tell me old stories. The woman couldn’t cook very well but she knew her desserts.

Although the cartoon character didn’t have much patience with those around her, van Pelt was always patient with me whenever I came over to visit. I was a rambunctious child who hated sitting still my grandmother would consistently stay in the kitchen baking sugary treats for me while I banged away at an old typewriter that sat in her bedroom. While she was always willing to let me play dress up in her fur coats, I can remember shuddering at the feeling of the animal skins underneath my fingertips as if they were still alive and breathing. When I finally gave up playing a bougie secretary, she would take me into the living room and start dancing with me. She would whirl me all over the living room singing along to her scratchy old records. “Stranger in the Night” was one of my favorite songs and I knew every word by heart.

In the cartoon, van Pelt has a psychiatry stand where she would dole out words of wisdom like cups of sour lemonade. Although the real Lucy van Pelt didn’t poorly advise her friends for her personal advantage, she always loved to pass along her secrets free of charge. Her most famous secret being that if one ate the burnt edges of their toast, their eyes would sparkle. Being a picky eater as a kid, I made sure to eat every last singed crumb hoping that when I got older, my eyes would be beautiful as she said. Another one of her classic secrets was the secret to having good skin in old age. Every night she would wash her face with Clinique soap and lather on a thick layer of Pond’s Dry Skin Cream, a routine that is still common among the women in my family.

It was no secret that van Pelt loved to admire herself and took great care in making sure that she appeared her very best whenever she left the house. Everyone around her admired her as well. It hurt them to watch as she struggled with an illness during her final years of life. At the funeral, we all knew she would have hated whoever had styled her hair that day. While the memories in her head were slipping away the legacy of Lucy lived on. I still know all of the words to “Strangers in the Night” and eat my toast burnt to a crisp.

Stucky is a Junior studying Visual Communications

Who is the Batman?

By John Kendall

In recent years, Batman has been associated with great movies present on some of the most critically acclaimed lists along with “The Godfather” and “The Lord of the Rings.” Very few “comic book” movies find their way to this kind of prowess and honor. “The Dark Knight” is a cinematic masterpiece that will be considered quintessential for the rest of time.

When you ask random young people on the street who the Batman is, the immediate reaction is Christian Bale. Bale executed the role of Bruce Wayne to a perfect tee in every aspect; there is no debating that. Moreover, Heath Ledger’s portrayal of the iconic Joker role is the best interpretation of the villain the world has ever seen. He showed us just how crazy the world can be in the midst of chaos and anarchy. In turn, Ledger revealed to us how crucial it is for good to overcome evil even on the darkest of nights. The modern interpretation of Batman in the Christopher Nolan trilogy is nothing less than legendary. However, this trilogy is not what makes the Batman character legendary. In fact, the modern trilogy has absolutely nothing on the legendary impact of its predecessor.

When you ask a “true” Batman fan who the Batman is, the answer will almost always be Michael Keaton. That is not to say Bale does not embody the character of the Batman incredibly, but Keaton did it first. Even more impressive, Keaton did it without being able to move his neck in a suit made entirely of rubber. Keaton showed the world back in 1989 what fighting crime was all about. It meant kicking ass and taking names all while listening to the beautiful sound of a Prince soundtrack. Moreover, Keaton continually saved Gotham while somehow always getting the woman; something Bale seemed to have a problem with.

Another major difference in performance is the broodiness of Bale’s interpretation as opposed to Keaton’s. Bale is always hurt and moping around about his beloved Rachel Dawes. He is always waiting around for Dawes to finally “fall in love” with him when the world no longer needs Batman. How on Earth does he think the world will just one day not need Batman anymore? Of course the world needs Batman, there are thousands of comic books and novels to prove it.

In spite of that, this is not the point. The point is Keaton’s Batman never expressed his emotional state of being and acted like a brooding teenager. Why did he never do this? Because he was out there fighting bad guys because of Vicki Vale. Vale was not waiting for the world to magically not need Batman anymore. She knew just as much as the rest of them that the world was always going to need him. So, what did she do? Vale, played by Kim Basinger, supported the hell out of Batman and just let him keep saving her. The Keaton and Basinger dynamic duo is one of the most romantic, formidable love stories of all the superhero pairs.

In sum, if you are reading this and have no idea who Keaton is, go watch the original “Batman” movie. Listen to undeniably the best soundtrack of all time by none other than Prince and watch Keaton embody the Batman. The movie catapults the comic franchise into Hollywood and ultimately lays the groundwork for the modern interpretation. When it comes down to it, all of the Batman movies are incredible in their own ways. It just depends on how you choose to watch them.

Kendall is a public relations senior.

Why are American People So Damn Bothered?

By Lindsay Alshefski

2016 and 2017 have been two very controversial years for the U.S. and the rest of the world. With the rise of social media over the past decade, everyone is a reporter and everyone feels his or her voice is important. Let me get that straight, everyone’s voice is important, but only to some degree. People just don’t know when to shut up.

Let’s list a couple of events over the past year that American people were very bothered about. As Americans, we’ve talked about the 2017 presidential election, immigration laws, the crisis in the Middle East, women’s marches, the HB2 law (better known as the LGBTQ “bathroom bill”), waiting in line, drivers on the road, paying bills, the cost of living, people always on their cell phone, people using their cell phones to rant on Facebook about everything listed above, blah, blah, blah the list goes on. One of the major problems right now with America is that there are many controversial issues happening. To most people it seems that nothing is going right at all. Hence, people being bothered about everything.

If you haven’t heard, two highly debated representatives ran for president of the United States. I don’t know about you, but I spent my last six months living in Europe. Coming home to President Trump is quite humorous and scary. That’s O.K. though because If Hillary Clinton became President Hillary Clinton, it would have been just as bad. Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are two of the most obnoxious people on the planet. While these two humans brought many political issues to the stand, they also had their own issues. They still do. That being said, as American citizens we must accept our president and do what we can to take a stand for the American people as a whole. If that means women’s marches, protests, liking and sharing on Facebook, then fine.

Again, people are so damn bothered, but please for the love of humanity know how to and when to stop. While we are on the topic of Facebook, millennials obsess over social media like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter. Not everyone cares about where you are, what you think or what you may be doing. Are we that insecure?

Let’s talk about something a little lighter. Cell phone use. Everyone has one and everyone uses one. People run into other people walking aimlessly while looking at Instagram, drivers can’t drive in a straight line when they are on their phones, people answer their phones when having a conversation with someone else and people can’t have a conversation across the table to a real human without texting someone. Again, the list goes on.

What about waiting in line? A five-minute grocery store line or a restaurant waitlist would make someone keel over. I’m sorry sir or ma’am, but you just so happen to have chosen the time after work and in between dinner to get your groceries like the rest of the human population. Or I’m sorry sir or ma’am, but we physically cannot seat you at a table unless you would like to sit on the floor. I don’t get what people think when they get so bothered over these things.

Whether one of the examples listed above is something that bothers you or maybe even it’s something more polarizing like abortion, immigration or politics, your opinion matters, but only to some degree. Does the phrase “take a chill pill” mean anything to anyone? The phrase

might actually be relevant to everyone across America. Please doctors, prescribe people if they have symptoms. The rest of us cannot handle the nonsense. I don’t know about you, but I’m not bothered by a whole lot. I guess I am just so damn bothered by the rest of American people being bothered. Who’s with me?

Alshefski is a public relations senior

The Nurturer

By Morgan Hubbard

From birth a mother’s touch was one that was nurturing and unforgettable. She always wanted to be held by her mother, knowing that she will always be by her side no matter what. When she was hurt or did not feel good she knew that her mother would always come to her rescue. The relationship between a mother and her child is supposed to be loving and caring but is it always like this? Does it always have to be the mother nurturing or could the child be nurturer every once in a while?

Growing up as an only child with her mother and father she felt like it was the best thing in the world. Getting the experience that some kids would never get, to live with both parents, being spoiled and having the so called perfect household. She was a four year old little girl that had no worries. She lived on the Eastside of Atlanta in a nice neighborhood and house. She always had friends over and enjoyed every moment of her childhood. For years her life consisted of going to school and daycare on the weekdays and on the weekends having friends over or hanging with her parents. The life she was living had no worries.

The unexpected happened about seven years later and changed her world forever. Her worry free and happy life turned upside down. The day her daddy stopped coming home she knew something was wrong. The days mommy cried all the time, she knew something was not right. Her mother was a strong woman but nowadays she seemed not so strong. The woman that always nurtured her seemed like she was the one that needed nurturing. She was in her room lying down and decided to check on her mother. When she walked in she saw her mother sitting on her bed crying. She looked at her puzzled not knowing what to do, then something just clicked. She walked over and began hugging her and said “It will be o.k. mommy. I love you.” She sat there for about 30 minutes with her mom until her mom stopped crying. This was the moment that changed the relationship between her and her mom forever.

She had always been close with her mom but since that day she nurtured her mom and had to do it often. The bond they shared became unbreakable. From then on, every time she saw her mother crying she always gave her a hug and just sat with her comforting her until she was o.k. As a child, her mother had always been there for her whenever she had a good day or bad. Now, it was time for her to return the favor.

As the years went by her mother became the strong woman she once was. The crying decreased and the smile was coming back. She was there for her mother just like her mother had always been there for her. She now realized that her mom was going to be o.k. Mom had always been the nurturer but she had to return the favor and be there for her mom over the years. At any moment, the nurturer role can change and at that moment years ago, she became the nurturer.

Hubbard is a public relations junior.