Random Stuff In Which I Am Obligated To Write About
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Random Stuff In Which I Am Obligated To Write About
In which I talk about stuff that I am obligated to talk about.
Curated by Andrew Kathan
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1920's Dancing: REDUX

I've always found dancing intriguing because it is an activity that I participate in quite frequently. However I've never really thought about it's culture or background. And as Katie pointed out, the 1920's brought an endless supply of dances that are part of our every day culture. It's interesting to know that when a do a step such as the Charleston, the significance and popularity of that move goes back 90 years. It's really cool to think that a simple fun activity such as dancing could become such a defining force in the 20's. Also the dances are still everyone in our society today as Katie points out. Shows like Dancing With The Stars and So You Think You Can Dance are extremely popular today and provide great entertainment for millions of viewers.

 

One of the main questions I stage to this, however, is why isn't dancing more of a part of our culture?  I mean TV shows are great and all, but generally when you think of a "dance," you picture a bunch of dressed up sweaty kids fist pumping in a dark room to loud music (or maybe that's just me).  I feel privileged because I participate in activities that require me to dance frequently, and it really is a ton of fun.  But I think that kids should teach dancing from the 1920's in school again.  Maybe then we could become more culturally enriched and have more fun at school.

 

Just a thought.


Via Katie Smith
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Eric Stockholm's comment, October 30, 2012 2:00 PM
This blog post really made me think about what people from the 1920's would think about dancing today. Thanks Katie!
Sara Wiser's comment, October 30, 2012 2:24 PM
It was interesting that you didn't only talk about the music, but the dancing that came from the music. I also that it was cool that you talked about how the Jazz Age affected today's culture.
Madison Scott's comment, November 1, 2012 12:07 PM
It is absolutely crazy to think about how ‘what is accepted in a community’ has changed dramatically overtime. This is exactly what this blog made me think. I love when you mentioned how some people would react if the came from the 1920's to today. I can't even imagine. Just like how if we were to go back to the 1920's. Even though that was a radical time and more and more things were being accepted, people in our time period would be in shock of how things were. Thank you for this blog, it really has got me thinking.
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Why Is Daisy a Prissy Drag Queen?

"'Cause the boy with the cold hard cash
Is always Mister Right, 'cause we are

Living in a material world
And I am a material girl"

Madonna's "Material Girl" is a good summary of Daisy's personallity in The Great Gatsby, or atleast at first.  But before I talk about that, I need to apologize for something.  Please excuse my decision to use "Material Girl" from the Broadway musical Priscilla: Queen of The Desert.  I did this for two reasons.  One, it was on of my first Broadway musicals, and two, drag queens singing songs by Madonna is hilarious.


Anyway, back to the book.  I feel as though I'm being unfair by choosing this as Daisy's theme song, but it was the best I could do.  No one can deny that Daisy is a bit of a money enthusiast.  In fact, she is so swayed by money that she gives up true love with a poor man (Gatsby) for an unhappy marriage with a rich man (Tom).   But as I said, this is not an entirely fair analysis of Daisy's character.  She had no idea if or when she would see Gatsby again, so that in itself is a sad and complicated situation to begin with.  Also, Daisy's thoughts and actions change when she and Gatsby are reunited.  She wants to return to a relationship with Gatsby.  I do not think it is because Gatsby in now rich either, but more because she realizes that he actually cares for her.  So although Daisy starts as a bit of a material girl, at the end of the day all she really wants is love.

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There Is More To Life Than Money!

There Is More To Life Than Money! | Random Stuff In Which I Am Obligated To Write About | Scoop.it
Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous - The New American Dream?

This article makes me angry.  Essentially it claims that American culture has shifted so much to the point where the "American Dream" is now "The need to become wealthy."  This angers me mainly because of the pessimistic (atleast in my opinion) views of the author.  I honestly do understand what he is saying.  Maybe in some way the American Dream has shifted into a desire for wealth and riches, but I refuse to believe it is that black and white.  Rather wealth is an indirect aspect that may be required to reach the American Dream.  Now what is the American Dream?  In my opinion, it varies for every single individual.  For me, the American Dream is the thought that you can achieve anything, be anyone, and pursue a great life.  Nothing is impossible because we have countless opportunities to better ourselves as people in this great country.  That is why this article angers me.  It wants to dilute the overall possibilities of the American Dream by turning it into some shallow and superficial bounty of, "Oh, my life is great because I have so much money!"  Have you heard the saying, "Money can't buy happiness"?  Well I'll concede that it probably helps in the long run, but that saying exists for a reason.  It will prove to be a great rule to live by.

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2 Kids Shot At Apartment Complex Swimming Pool

2 Kids Shot At Apartment Complex Swimming Pool | Random Stuff In Which I Am Obligated To Write About | Scoop.it

"Police in the nation's capital are looking for a man they believe shot two children and an adult at a District of Columbia swimming pool on Monday afternoon."

This article tells a rather depressing story of violence, children, and swimming pools.  Basically some sadistic man went to a swimming pool in Washington D.C. and shot two children and a woman.  Thankfully no one was killed however.

 

Murders have always fascinated me (Said the creepy person).  I mean, obviously I don't support them.  But as proven by Wilson in "The Great Gatsby," every murder has a deep psychological reason behind them.  His wife was killed just as he was going to start a new life with her, so he sought revenge for it, and that was his reason for killing Gatsby in his swimming pool.  As for the mysterious man in D.C., what was his reason for shooting these people?  Were they a family who left him for some reason, and he sought revenge?  Was he a man who never had a family so his mind forced him to do it?  All of these seem perfectly logical until you hear from the article: "Those shot may not have been the intended victims..."


Alright, maybe the man was just crazy.

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Let's Roar On Back To The Roaring Twenties!

Let's Roar On Back To The Roaring Twenties! | Random Stuff In Which I Am Obligated To Write About | Scoop.it

"For 10 years, between the destruction of World War I and the misery of the Great Depression, people in North America were actually happy."

Right off the bat, this place sounds great already!  I mean not to hate on 'The Roaring Two-thousands,' but a lot of people today aren't doing so hot emotionally, culturally, or financially.  This article will tell you all sorts of stuff that happened in the twenties that would be insurmountably helpful if they happened again now!  People had money!  Industry was expanding!  The stock market and economy didn't suck!  People were having a good time for once!  And we were developing what is now American culture as we know it!  Boy, doesn't that sound just dandy?  Everything that improved in the twenties pretty much summarizes the problems with our country.  Doesn't our culture just seem diluted now?  I'm trying to think of something that represents my state, Indiana, in all of its American glory and I can think of one word.  Corn.  Chances are you thought of something equally as exciting unless you live in New Orleans or New York.  Also I don't think there's a single soul on the planet that thinks our economy is doing fine.  Let's have some stock market booms again!

 

All we need to do is make the twenties happen again!  Make it 'The Roaring Two-Twenties' if you catch my drift.  Now how can we do this?  It's easy!  Just repeat what happened back in the day!  Let's just have a horrific war and have a jolly old time in the aftermath!

 

Wow, I hope people appreciate my humor.  I'm sorry about that.

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Eric Stockholm's comment, October 30, 2012 1:59 PM
I appreciate your humor Andrew.
Katie Smith's comment, October 30, 2012 2:13 PM
I agree Andrew! That was a really funny blog! I'm liking it!
Andrew Kathan's comment, November 12, 2012 7:10 PM
I came really close to rescooping my own blog. Wow that would've been embarassing
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I Am Not A Pornographer

This is one of my favorite videos made by the vlogbrothers, two brothers who have a video blog that they use to communicate with one another.  The man in this video is John Green, the author of the New York Times Bestselling novel "Looking for Alaska," and he talks about a school that wanted to have his book banned for its inappropriate content.

 

 I love this video for many reasons.  First of all, I'm sort of a John Green fan girl, so I'm inclined to respect and listen to his thoughts on important issues.  Second, I love how he manages to incorporate humor into a topic that he is so passionate about. Third, it gives the author's point of view on an instance of book banning.  Finally, it shows us the author's justification for including the questionable scene that the book is being criticized for.

 

Recently, I was told in a presentation about banned books that the reason authors write in scenes that are crude, sexual, or inappropriate is because they needed to be there.  The story could not be the same story without it.  That's the thing I appreciate most about this video.  Having read "Looking For Alaska" and after seeing the author's justification, I am thoroughly convinced that what I learned in the presentation is 100% true.

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