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Weekly Photo Challenge: Free Spirit

This is a photograph I took when with my friend for my photography class. She is my Alice in my Through the Looking Glass theme.
Although it cannot be seen, this is a park by the university. It was a hot summer evening, and all around us students were sleeping, laughing, sitting in trees and – in general – relaxing after the stress of a uni day.
She is a light and happy soul, with the attention span of a butterfly. She was walk/skipping to a tree she thought would be good, and I was following her. The wind picked up at this moment. I took this unbeknownst to her, as the wind playfully ran through her hair.
First photograph I’m uploading. I didn’t think I’d like to share my photos, but I’ve been looking around and now am willing to try it out with Daily Post’s challenge.

The Paradoxical ‘A’

Wow. Becoming peeved in twice in two days by the same person.

I would say that’s one for the record books, but really – that wouldn’t even make the dustbin where the doodles are kept.

Every scholarly student aims for perfection. Yes? Well, at least that is the educatory Nirvana. The peak of the mountain that is , physically, most unlikely for a student to reach. Now don’t hold up your ‘ANGRY’ signs! Join me in facing the fact: most generally, scholars aren’t known for their athleticism.

Simple, clean and factual. It’s not a dig, nor an insult. Education is for the masses to become learned, and I am setting aside my beliefs on streaming athletes and scholars for the moment. That is a debate that is on leave till requested reinstation.

This academic perfection would be 100%. Getting full marks on your exam, test, paper or project. I’m sure that there are many more academic mediums that 100% could be applied, but I’m just too lazy to think of them.

I myself received 100% today. Granted, a mock-exam. Practice for externals, or “finals” in the American vernacular. These mocks were in fully fitted exam format, and most definitely an official mark of progress.

I was so shocked at first, and then happy – but it was more of a dull happiness. I was quietly content, not leap off my chair ecstatic. That may be just my personality however. I take good and bad marks in my stride. This was in a subject that I have always been good at. I did not study for this exam till the night before and even then, thoughts of Sherlock were floating around my head. (Mmmm Sherlock)

Being someone who often cavorts in the company of those who receive top grades, I do understand how it works. If they’re smart in the superior sense, they only just acknowledge it. They play meek. A small nod, maybe even a smile – but they play it down. When congratulated, they humbly say thank you. They either blush and slip into “Aw shucks!” mode; or they degrade their mark, brushing it off and changing topic. Whatever happens, behind that demure expression – whenever anyone recognises their achievement, or congratulates them – they spark up. Their face may look placid, but their mind looks like a grin. A great, big fat one. When I say ‘they’, well….. guilty!

I don’t believe anyone actually thinks that their high mark is worth self-flagellation, but true emotion is repressed for fear of ‘bad form’. Heaven forbid anyone actually say what they are thinking and, by extension, feeling!

The thrill of the grade – my goodness that sounds nerdy – is manifested by self, but it cannot be sustained without recognition. What’s the point of gaining high achievements if nobody knows? There really is no point. To be politically correct and to appeal to the opposite of the social stratosphere, I draw on the Olympics. What would it matter if they were the world’s best athletes if they existed in the town of Podunk, Nowhere; Population = 0 (excluding the athletes)?

The point of my rather over extended metaphor is that high achievements deserve, require and thrive on recognition. But what is it when you are such a high achiever, that the consistency of your results becomes expected?

This is not me in anyway. You are looking at the proud owner of a scraping pass in Mathematics. I will tell anyone that I hold the notch of 50% on my university qualification belt. But this subject that I received 100% in was a suject I consistently perform highly at.

I noticed though, upon telling mentioned peever (I don’t care if that’s not a word, I’m the peeved peevee) that I was barely congratulated. In fact, it was barely even acknowledged. Like an A was what was expected, so it didn’t matter that I actually achieved it. I then realised, that my interactions with others were akin to what I described above. I brushed the mark off in with my classmates in a cavalier fashion, like it was just off the cuff. (Which it really was when you think about the amount of preparation I did. E.g. Zero)

I don’t know, but I’m pretty sure that if a student who didn’t generally perform at a high standard received that mark they would be ecstatic. So would their close relatives. It depends on financial status; but, in the case of middle class and higher, I think that some reward or prize would be given.  Is prize even the right word? I know that an extremely wealthy acquaintance received a trip overseas as reward for passing Additional Maths. To use the best terminology………that is obviously insane.

Now I’d like to make it clear that I don’t want a reward for my grade. (Yes I do… No I don’t… Yes I do… No I don’t. – warring with myself). Okay, every person is inherently greedy. If it’s available, they will want a gift a reward or something free. I am most certainly not perfect, and most certainly not an exception. The exam doesn’t count for anything, and I didn’t work to deserve the mark.

In my very roundabout way I’m trying to make a point. Low grading students when receiving an A, gain lots of attention and recognition. They are applauded. High achieveing students when receiving an A get recognised, but it’s what’s expected and less attention is given. That may not be necessarily true. What I suppose is, that if a high achieving student earns a high achievement (dumb-speak now) then this high achievement is appreciated less for what it actually is. The value of the achievement alone, without any other information, is high. When the information of consistent achievements is added, the value of the achievement is lessened in their perspective. It is what’s expected, therefore not an occurence to be celebrated.

Phew. There. Got that out. I swear, halfway through I turned into a fish. 3 second memory and gaping mouth included.

High achievers get A’s, but the valuing is lower. Low achievers want (possibly secretly,deep down… unless they can’t fight through their cloud of smoke – pot or regular) A’s, or at least higher grades… but their chance at receiving them is low. (Terrible grammar on my part. I apologise)

I wish my achievement had been valued slightly more by those who are closest to me? Is that what I’m trying to say? No reward. But is a resounding high five too much to ask?

I like high fives.

I’m lucky that low marks aren’t the end of the world in my family. A high, high, high, high, high achieving student getting a lower mark? Step out of the blast radius. Quickly.

A friend of mine came second in our maths class two years ago. 96% to the leading 97%. His mother cut his laptop adapter in half.

Yes, you read that right and no, it is not an exaggeration. She cut it. Not confiscate. Cut. She got a pair of scissors , and cut the wire in half. R.I.P adapter.

That reminds me – THE ASIAN FAIL.

Just no. I cannot talk about that right now. Maybe if you ask me nicely.

So, all readers far and wide in which my rants I do confide……. comment if you please. Tell me I’m wrong, tell me I’m right – it’ll be good, we can get into a fight.

No, I wouldn’t fight you. Just have a patch of verbal jousting.

Till next time, compadres.

Also thanks to my new followers. It was most gratifying to see that not everyone thinks I’m a babbling nutter. 😉

Middle Child Syndrome

Middle Child Syndrome. The sociological and psychological condition that leaves a middle child feeling isolated and ignored.

An adequate, frequently used term.

Funny thing is.. My family has four children.

Didn’t think about that, did they? Think about the even numbers. Granted, they seem rare, and definitely displaced from the idealist 2.5 in the little white house (probably not on a prairie) – but they still exist. They deserve some acknowledgement. Even numbers of offspring should rise up!

What happens when, instead of one child being left out in the middle, there are two children in the middle thus moving the ‘firstborn’ and lastborn’ into minority positions?

Considering my position as firstborn, I am biased and can freely admit it. However this doesn’t mean that my bias is incorrect.

If the ‘middle’ is a cohesive majority this estranges the outlying positions. Of course, the youngest is – in the majority of the time- ‘babied’. They are the last to leave the nest, fly the coop or any other Avian clichés you can think of. The youngest is looked after.

How about the eldest? Yes, the eldest is given a few years -more if lucky- of their parents sole attention. They generally grow up in stimulated environments, as long as the parents treat their test baby right.

That would introduce another interesting dinner time contention amongst my siblings :
-was the eldest so great they thought they’d try again? OR
– did they fail the first run and wanted to get a better model?

Who knows? That’s definitely a topic for another time.

The first may sit on the throne, but they don’t become the eldest until a coup is staged. The firstborn is dethroned and the next child – in my case, one of the middles- takes its place. As the eldest matures, responsibility is placed with them because -of course- the young ‘uns couldn’t possibly , I don’t know, load the dishwasher for example. That must be too complex for their younger, underdeveloped understanding of the world to attempt.

What was that pop, you ask? Oh, just the sound of the cap being twisted off my sarcasm jar.

That example may have been petulant, however it was a bona fide excuse the youngest in my family made to avoid the dreaded load of the dishwasher. Apparently they didn’t know how, and so couldn’t help.

In all seriousness though, as responsibility is given it comes with the positive of greater independence. At least in my case, that would be an apt statement.

I was once told by my darling mother something that I found to be quite an impact.

The (rough) dialogue went (as it’s dredged from my memory vault):

1 ‘Second born’ couldn’t catch the bus.

2 Why? I catch it all the time. I like it.

1 Because you two are different.

2 How?

1 You’re more … Independent. You don’t need as much help.

I was so flattered by this. I liked that in some gleeful, slightly malicious, way that I was better. That they recognized a strength I have and told me about it. That this wasn’t a quality diminished in stature by a comparison of sympathy to its presence in my siblings. It was a quality I feel I solely possess.

But when is it that independence becomes detachment; a loss of need for attention and interest? Is it, that if they can be sustained individually and independently then the ties are cut loose? No support needed.

When is it that strength becomes intimidation? When their strength becomes an unapproachable barrier that cannot be encroached on? Is it impenetrable?

That would be the crux of my matter. What do you or I do, if your strengths become the things that can essentially harm you? I don’t want to sacrifice qualities I have worked hard to earn and build up. I don’t want to lie down on a table and pretend, just to garner positive reaction.

It’s definitely an entanglement. That is for sure.

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That most certainly became a deep tangent just in the latter. Bit off point, but something I needed to think through in my head by expressing in writing. Now it’s out there, imprinted on the never ending code of the world wide web. Huzzah!

What do any of you think about this? Anyone have something they want to say to me about it? What are your beliefs on it? Do you have any sibling or family dynamics that are interesting to speak about? Comment if you want a good ol’ gander.

Signing off till next time I am inspired to heave words off my chest.

HEY ALL VOTE FOR #TEAM CLARY

So Clary is up for the second round against Cammie from Gallagher Girls in the YA Sisterhood Heroine Tourney.

#TeamClary must of course win because she is, after all, absolutely incredible and so frickin kickass.

However you could contribute and add to YOUR awesomeness by voting for #TeamClary at the YA Sisterhood Heroine Tourney here :http://ya-sisterhood.blogspot.com/2011/12/match-17-clary-seed-1-vs-cammie-seed-17.html

Also if you haven’t read #TMI/#TheMortalInstruments you should be very ashamed and should be getting your ass to a bookstore/library now.

Props to Cassandra Clare for writing such incredible series and being so amazing to her fans and also thanks should go to Valerie from StuckInBooks for being such an amazing advocate on Clary’s behalf. You go girl!

you gotta friend in me

I’m having quite a bit of difficulty getting into this website.

Not precisely sure how it can be used. From what I’ve seen, mainly all people do is whine about their lives and I don’t want to be one of those people. I don’t want what I write to seem insignificant and ignorant in comparison to the real troubles people face in the world. Does that make sense?

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Nobody reads this, but if by some miracle somebody was actually interested in my absolutely boring words -do you have any suggestions as to what I should write/ what I should do to get more into the site?

so i set fire to the rain

Just testing out my brand new blog

I guess this is the new prologue

So maybe you should know that the title of this post

Is the song that’s playing in my head the most.

Don’t know why I had to rhyme.,

Gosh it’s so bad it’s a crime 🙂

Hello world!

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