10,000 Lessons From Haiyan

For readers of this blog, I appreciate your interest in my humorous (and sometimes ridiculous) cogitations that keep my world balanced. Then I remember that all the situations which I don’t tend to write about, due to their disinterest, make my world feel like its spinning out of orbit. But alas, this blog has helped me keep my feet on the ground.

In this crazy world in which we live, I am the Editor-In-Chief of a college newspaper and in addition to that, gruesome weather seems to happen too often. Below is an excerpt of a short piece I wrote for the newspaper with links on how you can donate to help disaster relief in the Philippines. You can participate by reading it first, then donating. Or the other way around.

By an accident of geography, Typhoon Haiyan passed through the Philippines after incubating in the largest ocean in the world and wrought havoc that was never seen before. Is this weather a foreshadowing of the future of our world? What is the future? Most importantly, is there a future for us?

Whatever the cause of the super typhoon is irrelevant, more so for the innocent victims who were living a sustainable life in the least developed part of the world. The reports and photos taken of the devastation is horrific to say the least and our hearts bleed for them. What is important, however, is what we as humans will do about it. Can we talk together about the future of climate change and these typhoons increasingly becoming the norm? We cannot have these 10,000 lessons to simply be forgotten.

Do the adults of this generation care to plan for the future, or have they accepted the fact that there is no future? Those planning to create a better world for us to inherit must learn to see beyond their lifetime.

For more information on how you can contribute to disaster response, click through the following links for lists of organizations:

How to Help Philippines Typhoon Victims | The New York Times

Typhoon Haiyan Relief | Clinton Global Initiative

Organizations Offering Relief to Typhoon Haiyan Survivors | NBC News

signout

MY LIFE-ALTERING PANTS (THAT NEED ALTERATIONS)

Life Altering Pants - HELP!

Last weekend, as I walked the glossy, waxed floors of Bloomingdale’s, I had no intention of purchasing anything, much like everyone else everywhere. Then my mom pointed to a colorful spread of striped sweaters in the Free People corner of the department store and exclaimed, “Oh, this is so you!” I took a quick glance at the mannequin wearing one of the displayed sweaters and my first thought was, “Yeah, it is.” Then my gut kicked in overdrive and my subconscious iconoclastic aspirations caused me to yell out, “Am I that predictable?!”

Throughout high school, I was struggling to be in fashion rather than finding my style. I subscribed to ELLE during my freshman year because I was mandated by the school magazine drive, but also to find out what I should be wearing that winter season. I, along with most girls, aspire to work in fashion the way all boys aspire to be cowboys and baseball players but settle to be a sports newscaster or something. I thought I would be the next Tavi Gevinson, but then I soon realized after reading my first issue of ELLE that all the avant garde clothes featured in editorials were not meant for 13-year-old me. Alas, I was unfulfilled with my wardrobe that was “so lacking of cool.” During that time, I had an utter contempt for fashion and its rather expensive schemes. I did, however, quickly understand fashion and trends by reading all the articles which gave me a detector for who was really keeping in style on the streets of New York.

It would only be a far-fetched dream of my 13-year-old broken-down-Converse-wearing-self to believe that my current college best friend would tell me that I should start a fashion blog. Now that I find opening my birchwood IKEA closet to select my day’s garments an actual party, I learn that I have become “predictable.” That’s not what I asked for! But maybe it is, when my first subscription to ELLE came in the mail. As my mom and I continued to the SALE racks of Bloomingdale’s, I spotted a pair of pants which I looked at for five seconds before realizing that I would never wear it. Being the supportive mother that she is, my mom tells me, “Those pants are cool.” And when a mom tells a girl that something is “cool,” sirens are supposed to be going off alarming the girl that it is in fact, “not cool.” I somehow reconsidered and took a second look at the dual-fabric pant saying, “But this is so not me,” to which my mom quickly whips a mildly teenager-ish, “So?”

Only in college did my sense of style finally arrive, much like a teenage girl having her first sip of unsupervised alcoholic drink with initial befuddlement, “So this is what it’s like.” I first walked into a J. Crew during the summer after high school when I assuredly called that store the mothership that I never knew was calling me. The only way to describe my current style would be Kennebunkport meets Williamsburg Farmer’s Market, with the occasional “villain in a John Hughes film.” From then on, my collection of button-down shirts ranging from shrunken ex-boyfriend to perfect-fit has grown beyond compare. I do daydream that if I were an unabashed risk-taker (and unbelievably wealthy) that my closet will replicate that of Beyonce’s, and maybe these pants that were paneled in linen fabric, fitted in jersey fabric on the back, and are “so not me” is a step toward that.

I bought the pants, but with a mild reluctance. It is currently hanging on my bedroom door, still with its various tags, and it is staring at me. Of course I Google the pants’ brand name to see what celebrities have worn it, as well as to validate my purchase. There in the vast wasteland of Google Images are Hilary Duff, Olivia Munn, Kristin Cavallari, among others. I think to myself, “Olivia Munn? She’s cool, I watch The Newsroom. But do I want to wear the same pants as Hilary, Olivia, and Kristin?” I examine its rustic-looking zippers and faded linen cloth, I imagine it something to be out of a 2008 issue of ELLE. I realize that they’re just pants. So I cut off the tags because that’s what Beyonce would want me to do, yet all I wanted was to escape the void of predictability.

signout