Thursday, August 05, 2010

You know what grinds my gears?

Today I was working on Standards.  After a while,  my eyes got tired and I needed to rest my vision, as well as my hands, arms, and back.  I stood up, walked around, stretched, then I decided to go back to the computer, but I wasn't ready to work.  And then there was "Facebook."

I start to look at the "updates," see what people have to say and/or what they are up to.  Today was a breaking point, for me, on "Facebook."  Do you know what GRINDS my gears?  Do you know what BOTHERS me?  I see the statuses of some people, some in English, some written in Spanish; their errors in their writing bothers/annoys/irritates me. Now, I am being very specific as to whose statuses bother me.  I understand we live in an age where sending e-mails, text messages, etc. is part of every day life and those things bring about the slaughtering of Language.  I get that.  What bothers me about the people I am taking about (I will not say names), is the fact that they cannot take the time to write a complete sentence, or check what they wrote; whether it is correct, if it makes sense, etc. Those people have or are about to complete/completed a B.A. in English or Spanish. 

You are supposed to be an educated human being and you cannot check if you spelled a word correctly.  Do you know the difference between morning and mourning? If you're having a "mourning" swim with the kids instead of a MORNING swim... I may be a little worried.  If you are talking about the "lack of something" or "non-existence" of something somewhere... in the Spanish Language you are speaking of the verb "haber" so If you say "no HAY" that comes from the verb "haber" not "no AHI,"

Do you know what I just realized, both of those examples come from people at SDSU.  I am not necessarily blaming the school for their mistakes, but it is worth a try to check how well our students are doing. 

This is just a rant.  Call me condescending, call me an asshole.  I don't care.  THAT is how irritated I am. 

Have a magical day!


Friday, July 30, 2010

How long does it take to make a decision?

Last week I submitted a form to CSUN Housing asking to move in at an earlier date.  Did I say I submitted it last week? But I digress, I e-mailed earlier this week to know if they received the form and when a decision was going to be made.  I was told that a decision was to be made by today and that I was to receive an e-mail.  After receiving no e-mail, I decided to call.  I called and then was told "who told you we'd have a decision this early!??"  Anyway, they said they would check.  As they check, I am put on hold with the usual hold music.  So, I am dancing away in my room for a couple of minutes while I wait for an answer, when they pick up to tell me that they'll have a decision made by next week.

How long does it take? 

It is not like someone is living there anymore.  *sighs*

Until next time,


Sunday, July 25, 2010


If someone is to blame here, it is Ms. Siera Eden Casey.  I create a blog, and forget about it, she reminds me of it, so I start blogging again.  Now, she goes and changes to tumblr, and I go see her new page, and just like her, I found it to be very appealing and there is something about it.  But I want one now...
           Should I leave you Blogger?
                            Should I join Tumblr?
                                                What to do?

Friday, July 23, 2010

Who is to Blame?

     Art in the Imperial Valley is not something seen everyday.  Every opportunity to see a play, hear a band or a concert, an art show, should be taken advantage of, as it is not a common occurrence.  It is as they say in Spanish, "Pasa cada venida de Obispo." That could translate to mean in English that such events happen once every million years. 
     Today, an adaptation of William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, by "Irish," opened in Calexico at SDSU's Rodney Auditorium.  A production by Wiseman Theatre Company, this modern adaptation is not the comedy Shakespeare envisioned over 400 years ago.  This play introduces the character of Emma Bottom (Caroline Danesi), who is in love with Lawrence Flute (Menny Arellano).  Sir Edward Bottom (Diego Castro), wants his daughter to marry Daniel Snout (Harvey Araujo), but Emma wants to marry Lawrence, while her friend, Helen Quince (Giovannie Pinedo), wants to marry Snout. Emma and Lawrence, like Hermia and Lysander, run away into the forest to profess their love and marry.  Daniel follows them, with Helen tagging along.  In the forest, Oberon, the Elf King (Tyler Burch), and Titania, the Fairy Queen (Vannessa AvendaƱo), quarrel, as Oberon wanted the "Royal Indian Child" (Jaihden Torres).   Shortly after, Puck (Bela Robles), the mischievous being, carried out Oberon's plan to steal the Royal Indian Child from Titania, and to help the couples in their love affairs.  This turned Sir Edward into an ass, who was loved by Titania and had both Lawrence and Daniel fighting for Helen.  After Oberon took the Royal Indian Child from Titania, they profess their love for each other, Puck lifts the spell, and everyone lives happily ever after. 
     It is difficult to begin to explain or analyze this attempt to recreate Shakespeare's comedy.  When a Judicator from the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival comes to judge a play, he or she is told to give two positive comments, and two constructive comments to the actors and or the production. In this production, it is not easy to give such comments, but one can try.  Let's begin with the positive.  The fight or battle between Lawrence and Daniel's character in Act II Scene 1 was well blocked and brought one of the very few laughs of the night.  On another matter, most of the costuming was well done.  The fairy world seemed better costumed than that of the other characters.  Moving into constructive criticism, projection is important.  In any stage, whether there is a microphone or no microphone, an actor must project. Something else, tech rehearsals are there for a reason, use them well.  Every production must have at least two tech rehearsals.  One for lights, set, sound, such things are important and it is empirical to know that the sound will not break, that a light will not go out, etc.  The other tech rehearsal is for costuming. One must make sure that costumes are working on stage and that nothing will tear or something will happen to the costumes on stage.  There was a close accident tonight on costuming.  BE CAREFUL.
     The play itself was poorly written.  It was never clear who the main agent in the story was.  Pieces of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream were noticeable, but the story lacked strength in many parts.  It is unclear whether it was the script, the acting, the directing, or what was the main reason behind what was seen on stage.
     This adaptation strips away all of Shakespeare's core plot.  Characters like Duke Theseus, Egeus were just deleted.  Here we see that the writer takes the story of Hermia, Helena, Lysander, and Demetrius, and just exchanges the names of the characters with that of the acting troupe to play in Duke Theseus' presence.  Obviously, this is not your normal night of theatre.  Shakespeare's work as well as the laughs were almost non-existent.

"Irish's" adaptation of A Midsummer Night's Dream is playing in the City of Calexico at SDSU IV Campus' Rodney Auditorium for one more night.  Saturday, July 24th, 2010 at 5PM and 7PM.  Run time 55 minutes.

I would like to make something clear, as an actor, as a student in Literature, and as a resident in the Imperial Valley. My review of this play is not a way of being condescending, or bashing art or any person in particular.  I expect the BEST out of everyone. I was once an actor here, I am a local, but I always have striven for perfection, and just because this is a local production, done by a local production company, with residents of this valley, am I going to expect less of any of them.  I expect to see a professional performance.  A performance in which actors, and everyone in the production team gives it their best and are still not happy with their performance.  I want to see a performance in which the actors get a standing ovation and I want to see it here. 
Tonight's performance, wasn't horrible or bad, it just wasn't ready to be performed. We, as a community have to support local work, but not only should we support it, we should become involved.  To those who are already involved, I bow to you.  Keep working, always strive for excellence. and never be ashamed of your work.

A Midsummer Night's Dream

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Pain, Frustrations, and a bit of K-12 Standards

It has been a rough day.  I worked all day today, which I enjoy immensely, but at the same time I am tired.  I have started to notice that my left knee is also starting to give me pain.  As a matter of fact, it is swollen as I am writing. 
Today, my task was to type into a word document Writing Standards from 1st Grade through 12th grade from the State of California.  Rewarding experience, but an eye opener.  It was sad to see that some students, which I tutor, are struggling with certain concepts, concepts that were supposed to be learned and at least by Eighth grade, granted these are college students.  I am not blaming the students, I am blaming our education system.  These are students that were, technically, part of the "No Child Left Behind" bill, and yet they are struggling with 6th grade writing standards. 
I find it funny they get frustrated because we are going through some of these concepts in class.  The students label it as "kid stuff" or "garbage." Well, student! if you had applied yourself and learned these standards when you were supposed to, we wouldn't be having this argument now, would we? But I digress.  Like I was saying it is not entirely the students fault.  Some instructors point out that there are a select few number of students that fall through the cracks, but there are students that graduate high school that don't know many of these core standards. 
I'm not asking for perfection, nor am I asking for someone to take the blame.  I am just asking you to think about this for a while.  We, in the educational field, are not all focusing on the same concerns, or have the same agenda.  We should all focus on the student.  It is the student who needs the help, it is the student who is struggling.  Here is the frustration. 

When I started going through these standards, I felt a little robbed of my education.  I did not learn all that needed be learned while in the K-12 system, granted, I started school in the U.S. in 6th grade.  Coming from Mexico, I had a lot of catching up to do, but I am here, an Imperial Valley College Graduate and a year away from finishing my Undergraduate work in English Literature and Theatre Arts.  I may not be perfect, but at least I am aware of these problems.  I try to address them and so should you. 

Ask yourself these questions?

Do you know what a simple sentence is? What about a complex? What about a compound sentence? What about a compound-complex sentence?  If you don't - that is something that was supposed to be learned in 6th grade. 
I understand, also, that not every student out there is a student in English, but as a student, one writes reports, research papers, assessments, etc. In which the English Language Arts Standards are important. 

I am using this venue as a way to vent.  I'm still in pain, I'm a bit frustrated, but I am really saddened really.  To see students that are struggling and really need the help, but a summer session is not really enough to help all. 

I could keep writing, but I think I would get more frustrated...

Until next time.


Saturday, July 17, 2010

Happy Birthday Disneyland!

"In 1955 an Amazing Man, named Walt Disney, dreamt of the Magic Kingdom"
                                                                                   -- Julie Andrews

A day like today, but in 1955, Disneyland opened its doors for the first time.  Today, the Happiest Place on Earth celebrates 55 years of magic, and there is no better way to celebrate this, than by remembering Walt Disney's immortalized words on Opening Day

"To All Who Come to this Happy Place, Welcome.  Disneyland is your land.  Here, age relives fond memories of the past, and here youth may savor the challenge and promise of the future. Disneyland is dedicated to the ideals, the dreams, and the hard facts that have created America.  With the hope that it will be a source of Joy, and Inspiration to all the World."

Happy Birthday!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Two posts on a day!

I am at Starbucks writing about writing.  How bohemian of me.  As I told some people over Facebook, I am a walking cliche. 

I am writing because I need a mental break.  A mental break from writing.  Do you follow my reasoning? I am writing, to get a break from writing.  In what twisted mind is that a break - MINE.  Oh well. 

For me, writing is a release.  Although I am writing, the mental break I need is from writing a research paper for students.  There is a difference in both writings.  Each time someone writes, the person writing is writing with a purpose.  The purpose behind the essay is to inform students about the research paper.  This blog post is a release, a break from the academic jargon.  A way to release energy and any thoughts that might be blocking me from continuing with the assignment and by this release of energy, the writing process can ensue and I can enlighten students with information about research paper. 

Back to work!


It's been a long time

It has been a long time since I post anything here. I have been busy, well, let me rephrase, I haven't given me the time to write.

Today, as I revise an essay, as I sit here in my dining/living room, spending some "quality time" with my parents, I decided to give myself the time to write here.

I reminisce on a dinner I had with some friends some time ago in which someone was asked "what makes Eduardo [me] mad the most?" I didn't know how to answer the question, about me. I had to think about what makes me mad the most. A friend answered without hesitation that what infuriates, angers me, etc. is ignorance. I hadn't thought about that, but it is true.
Although I am a believer that Patience is a Virtue, I sometimes add to that saying that Patience is a Virtue, but I have no patience for stupidity. I may sound condescending or egotistical, so what if I am. This is who I am.

I don't know why I am writing this. Usually, when I write on a blog or journal or anything outside the academia, I write in stream of consciousness. I let it all out. Writing is my way of letting go, of opening up.

Let's just change subject.

My summer has been.... uneventful, and I am really looking forward to going back to school. Oh yeah, by the way, I am not a normal person, or as some would categorize me, I am not "average," in any extent of the word. Anyway. As I was saying, I am looking forward to going back to school. I am excited for the school year to come. It is my last year as an undergraduate at Cal State University, Northridge, I am stage managing the opera for our Theatre Department, the Valley Performance Arts Center will open in the coming year, and we are doing "Cabaret," in which I hope to be part in, in any capacity.

Life is good.

Love me for what I am, Hate me for what I'm not.
God! I need a hair cut.