Seventh Grade Reflection

When I arrived back in the halls of Westridge I expected a year not too different from the last.
I couldn’t have been more wrong. Seventh grade turned out to be the craziest year I have ever experienced, and I’ve learned a lot other than just math, reading, science, and history.

School is so much more than sitting in classroom desks in seventh grade. In passing periods and at lunch I learned that people can be very odd. VERY odd. One day in October I opened my locker to find blood-covered notecards with symbols written all over them fall out. It was, of course, my friend Rory. But people other than my friends found it hilarious to act like complete hooligans all the time, like playing hot potato with a hard boiled egg in the track locker room and play find the toenail in each other’s lunches.

The only class where I could get a chance to rest was band, which to be honest without the class I would have gone insane by the second semester. After school was also the best part of the day because once all of my homework was finished I could hang out with my friends and have free time to myself. I have to admit that sometimes I was too tired after the school day to do anything productive, but the time to myself was also crucial to my mental well-being.

So to any incoming seventh graders, my advice to you is to make sure you always have something fun to do outside of school, because life would, I’m going to say it now, pretty much suck if school was it’s only aspect.

Is School Wrong About Books?

We’ve all been forced to read books in school before, and the teachers have always told us to think about the ‘hidden meanings’ the author supposedly put in the book. But did the author always really mean to put those meanings in the book? Or are the teachers just over analyzing it?

Why would the author put hidden meanings in a book? When he or she writes, the writer isn’t composing the book for an English class, but more for any reader that picks it up off a book store shelf. Chances are, when the owner of the book is reading it, they aren’t looking for hidden meanings, they’re just reading the book for fun. And of course the author knows that. So what’s the point of putting them in anyway?

All we know is that this is a case of our English teachers preparing us for high school, and we may never even know if the authors meant for these hidden meanings to be in their books.


The Little Detective and his Ghost Doctor

He was a usual boy with
a usual head
full of chemicals and knives
and bodies dead,
with murders as play scenes
and thumbs as his toys
he played all alone
’cause he hated the other boys;
except John Watson
his family doctor’s son,
who had died about a decade ago
but haunted Sherlock still, you…

(Source: imjohnlocked, via rachenbach)

About BBC’s Sherlock, a widely loved show in America and the UK.

Media and a Memory

Years ago, if there was one thing I couldn’t do without, it was my Nintendo DS. I could never find anything that would entertain me nearly as much as that handheld video game console.

I played it for years, with all of its different games, each one as fun as the next, until one day the DS broke. I could not get over it, and until I got a new one a week later, I was crushed.


But I learned that the DS really was a part of me, something I went to when I was sad. Of all the toys I ever played with in my life, none of them had more of an impact on me as the beloved DS of mine.

Week 4: Quote


“…the only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.”-Ralph Waldo Emerson, House and Garden Volume 163 (1925)

The most truthful quote in my eyes from RW Emerson. If you really want to become something great, you can become great if you really try hard enough. What guides your life are your hopes and ambitions, against all odds.

People who were dirt poor when they were young became successful and wealthy, but that can’t happen overnight, and it requires a lot of hard work; you really have to decide that you want to be something or someone to become it.


Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American poet among other things in the 19th century, and he had many great quotes about what he learned in his life.

RW Emerson’s bio:

Indoors in Austin

An enormous arcade, the most colossal laser tag arena you will ever visit, prizes, candy… No, it isn’t heaven. It’s the Austin Laser Tag Arena, a place you won’t ever forget the experience of.

Laser tag has a lot for you to have fun with, and their arcade is more entertaining than any other. They have ski-ball, coin roulette, and anything anyone could want. With each game you play you’ll earn some tickets, some more than others. If you have enough tickets, you can go to the prize exchange. There you can get all kinds of fun stuff, candy for a small sum of tickets, stuffed animals, swords, and if you happen to be insanely good at their arcade games and have thousands of tickets, even lava lamps and scooters. I personally am pretty mediocre at the arcade games, so I’ve gotten some cool stuff. But if you’re like one of my friends, the prize exchange is practically the best deal on Earth. I’ll never find a more entertaining arcade in the city of Austin, and I still haven’t found one anywhere else.

But what did you come to this place for? Laser tag. Running around a vast, dark arena with towering floors above trying to defend your team. Get shot and you move down in ranks, shoot the other team and you move up a rank. It’s a fun, intense experience that gets your heart pumping. Some of the best times I’ve had with my friends have been in the laser tag arena, shooting it out.

Laser tag has been one of my favorite things to do for a long time, and my absolute favorite on a rainy day with nowhere to go outside. There may be a lot of laser tag places out there, but Austin’s is one of a kind.


Lair of Shadow

The Phantom led Christine down the twisting flight of stairs, no light illuminating the floor beneath them. As they reached the bottom of the flight, the Phantom took Christine’s hand, stabilizing her as she reached the final stair. Christine followed the silent Phantom as he stepped nearer and nearer to a massive black lake, where a canoe stood, lonely, a single oar at its dock. They climbed into the canoe, the Phantom taking an oar and pushing off into the water.

Several candles radiated an orange-yellow glow, revealing rocks jutting out of the cold water. Christine’s imagination went wild, wondering what might possibly dwell beneath the surface… she shook the thoughts away. The Phantom stared straight ahead, unmoving and unblinking. “Where are we g-” Christine started, but she was hushed by the Phantom. The ceiling was wet and dripping; Every once in a while a drop would hit the lake, barely breaking the silence.

The canoe reached the dark land that lay before them. Christine could not imagine what she would soon see, but she held her breath and followed the Phantom into the shadows…

[ notes from darkness ]
Creative Commons License Photo Credit: Riccardo Romano via Compfight

Why Valentine’s Day is Depressing

I know Valentine’s Day is a day of love and feelings for your soul mate. But it really is kind of a limited holiday. In what way? Well, some of us don’t have anyone to give candy or hearts to. Valentine’s Day is truly depressing for some of us.

For one thing, I wouldn’t mind if hardly anyone else had a girlfriend or boyfriend, but the fact that they do sickens me. I see people in the halls holding hands, leaning in towards each other… Ugh. I really should be happy for them, but it would be a lot easier if I could identify with them. It just makes Valentine’s Day the most depressing 24 hours of February.

And then there’s the fact that I don’t have anything to do on Valentine’s day. Other people are going out to dinner and doing things with their girlfriend. My own 16 year old brother is going out to dinner with his girlfriend to make matters even worse. Where am I? On a hot date with my computer monitor. It just isn’t the same. Staying at home thinking about what I could be doing just adds to the depression of Valentine’s Day.

Yes, I can’t stand Valentine’s Day. But you know what? I can’t really mope around, because love may not be all it’s cracked up to be, ESPECIALLY in Middle School. Valentine’s Day may be depressing, but I can deal with that.

Why Foreign Languages are Helpful and Interesting

The World has many different cultures and countries, and the only thing that forms a barrier between them and separates them are languages. So if you know a new language, you unlock an entire dimension of things you didn’t know before! Languages are truly the ultimate link between worlds. Languages are very helpful and very interesting.

Say you want to travel to a new country, like Paris or Germany. Everything is great when you get there, except one thing, you can’t talk with nearly everybody there. But if you learn the language of that country or city, you can really have the best experience, talking with guides and making new friends… It’s almost like turning a light on in a pitch black room. So for traveling, Languages are truly the key to being successful.

And then if you want to learn a language just to understand your own better, it isn’t any less useful. I take Latin, and though it isn’t spoken anywhere, it truly is the best language for understanding English, and even other languages like Spanish or German. I now hear words that I would never understand otherwise, and just by using my knowledge from taking Latin I can make out what the word means! Did you know that every part of the heart is named directly from Latin? That is the kind of wealth a new foreign language can bring.

So whether you’re traveling to a new country, or just want to learn more about English, a language can be just the thing for you. If you are in Middle School and aren’t taking a language, I definitely recommend you do, because they’re very helpful and some of the most interesting subjects in education.

300 meters to glory

I caught sight of everyone stretching, rolling their heads, jogging in place to get ready for their events. The stands were filled with people, chatting with others in between races. I surveyed my warm up area at the goal line, an ensemble of mint green and gray. The spectators weren’t the only people talking with each other, though. The runners were conversing with their friends while doing lunges and back bends, about school and their events…

…But I was thinking about my event, the 300 meter hurdles, a brutal event for only the fastest and most durable sprinters. I had practiced it without relent for as long as I could remember, even though track had only begun. This early in the season the air was brisk and clean, and although that might seem a blessing to track members, it just meant stinging winds and painful injuries.

The 300 hurdles didn’t just require athletic ability, but strategy as well. How to approach the hurdles. How to pace yourself. How to take the turns. Without these you couldn’t win. Was I scared? No, just anxious. After all I had never done any hurdles over 100 meters and this was beyond that-far beyond that. So as I waited for my event, I prepared mentally and physically, stretching my muscles and my mind. I watched the 100 meter hurdlers fly past and watched their jumping form, their running form. Before I knew it-

” May the athletes for 300 hurdles please step to the mark”.