Sunday, November 25, 2007

When printing slang goes wrong....

In today's multi-lingual world, the one aspect of language that can always be counted on to change daily is slang. These words and phrases created by friends, celebrities, musicians, etc. become engrossed in our society's collective lexicon depending on the context and popularity of their use. In the effort to stay in touch with their readers, the print media will try to write their columns with a conversational tone and as such adopt slang words into their written pieces. As this practice continues to pick up more and more steam, the question that nobody seems to be posing is "Where do we draw the line?" Amongst the variety of printed media, I'm going to be discussing magazines because they are my favorite form of media coverage.

Amongst the growing number of magazines currently available on the shelves, there stands one in particular named "Game Informer." Being a desk assistant at dorm on campus, I have unchecked access to magazines that are sent to past residents who have since moved out. During my past desk shift I picked up the latest issue of "Game Informer" and started heavily reading through the columns to catch up on the latest in the video game world. In the main cover story, based around the upcoming Ghostbusters game, the author writes about the demo he plays. During one portion, he writes "The shelf slides aside abruptly, revealing a dank staircase." I'm sorry, did I read "revealing a DANK staircase?!" Maybe he meant, a staircase instead and the editor accidentally missed this error. Then again, maybe the author did intend for this use of the slang word "dank" to be used in his description. For those at home keeping score, the word dank is a slang term that refers to how awesome or high quality something is, usually used to describe food & drink as well as the quality of a quantity of weed.

But what's this?! Upon researching Webster's dictionary, the word dank existed in a proper form before becoming a slang term. And what's more, among the definitions listed for the word dank is one saying "unpleasantly moist or humid; damp and, often, chilly: a dank cellar." OOPS! Shite, I messed up. Okay, okay, so I made a mistake. The author in the Game Informer column used "dank " in the correct context and I have now ended up with proverbial egg on my face. Despite this foul-up I am still concerned about the misuse of slang in printed form as I still maintain my stance that there are some slang words or phrases that should only belong in verbal discourse and never written form. There, that's all I was trying to say. Better luck next time....

Monday, November 19, 2007

good morning vietna.....err wait, sorry, meant to leave it at good morning

anyways, tonight was a definite bust, getting absolutely zero homework done and top of that, I still have yet to update this site on a consistent basis. And oh yeah, i'm i'm not fat! YES! I did something! I ate cheez-its at a ridiculous speed and sat back the rest of the late late night to allow my body's high metabolism to process any and all fat in such a manner as to have no effect on my outward appearance. Yes, that's one thing I've done tonight. The second and more time-consuming goal I accomplished was sitting on my ass at the Spahr engineering library watching old episodes of "Andy Richter Controls the Universe." Case Closed

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


As the importance of blogs continues to rise in society, so does my fear of posting entries in my blogs. For as long as I can remember, I have had this deep-seeded fear of screwing up when it comes to any kind of writing, whether it be for personal, business, or classes. I don't know why I have this fear but it's been with me as far back as elementary school when I would stay up late into the night pacing about the family computer with fear and worry gripping my heart and mind. I would stare at the screen for hours as the anxiety brewed quietly inside me. Every little keystroke brought forth an additional amount of stress to the project at hand. At times I wanted to scream out to the heavens above with the echoing of the personal hell contained within but instead I let the pain continue to build within.

Fifteen years later nothing has changed. I still shrink away from important papers that I should be writing, hiding away from the anxiety rollercoaster ride that I know will accompany me with each paper left to write. At this very moment I have two papers due for my Western Civ I class but instead I am writing this blog entry in the hopes that if I confront this problem head on I will realize that its something I can run away from no more. It is this one fear that paralyzes my entire body and brings my heart to the brink of destruction each and every time I attempt to work on a paper. In the end there are two possible outcomess to the paper assignment. The first possible outcome is that in the end after laboring over the assignment with anxiety-driven madness I actually complete the assignment. I won't even go into whether or not its finished by the deadline as it is usually not the case. The second and more familiar outcome as of recent is that I do not finish the assignment and instead drop off all communication to the person or place of business that the assignment is due. Later after dwelling alone in my room for an extended period of time, I will emerge from my hole gripping a piece of paper from my doctor or an e-mail from the Services for Students with Disabilities office, claiming that it was due to my illness that I could not turn in the assignment. By going this route, I continue to perpetuate the one, single road block in my life that's been stopping me from publishing articles in the Kansan and other local publications. Because I cannot trust myself with being able to finish a writing assignment by the deadline, I keep myself away from applying for a job at any writing publication.

My attempts to stay in the J-school over these past years have been so that I can enroll in their classes which will force me to take on this personal demon head-on as it be with the survival mechanism of sink or swim. I finally had the opportunity to try this long-awaited strategy out this semester by enrolling in "Multimedia Reporting" and "Multimedia Editing." However, I made the mistake of enrolling in two more journalism classes which ended up taking up my time from these other journalism classes and in the end I withdrew from all four classes. This is where I found myself currently, sitting in the McCollum ARC typing up this blog entry while awaiting a job interview to return back to the desk job I tried to leave behind.

During the course of typing out this blog entry I experienced wincing anxiety that continued in waves throughout this writing process. What I have learned over the years about dealing with this problem is that it helps to wear a warm coat or other clothing because the anxiety and stress creates shivers all over my body, especially my back (which regulates the temperature of the rest of the body). Of course the prescribed Adderall helps as I usually take it while working on a writing assignment. The medicine keeps my butt planted in the seat long enough for me to crank out enough sentences and paragraphs to either complete the assignment or come damn near close. Without the Adderall, I have a tendency to become flighty and will at random pack up all of my things and quickly exit whatever place I am at and move to another location. Taking this moment to examine this behavior I can only surmise that relief from this anxiety and stress comes best in the form of being in motion, whether it be on foot or by car. This constant need to leave behind the root cause of the stress is controlled by a primitive instinct to protect my mind and body from anything causing it harm, which in this case is the paralyzing stress that stems from the writing assignment.

Well shit, there's everything that I've been dealing with for the past 15 years now, laid out nice and neat in paragraph form. Yes I am presently on my Adderall which is probably the reason why I was able to make it all the way to the end of this entry without hesitation or pause. The sad part that comes along with this typed out explanation for my successive failures in writing is that I have yet to develop a system for combating this problem. If I could develop a method for approaching a writing assignment, one that takes it from the beginning to the end of the assigmnment, I would apply for a job at the Kansan and in a second. Until then, I will work on this problem by simply continuing to write in this blog daily, meeting the fear and anxiety that takes me to the breaking point and somehow make it my own.

Good night self, until we meet again tomorrow.