Facebook, be gone!

So I deleted my Facebook. It’s awesome. So far my social life is still intact, so no serious damage. I’ll keep you posted on findings.

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The Lull Period

This is the worst part of senior year.

It’s not the emotional part, when you hear back from the scholarship committees, and the acceptance letters come rolling in.

It’s not the hardest part, which is the first semester when you have to balance the last real important semester schoolwork, the scholarship applications, and a social life.

But “The Lull Period” is. The Lull Period: You’ve heard back from your colleges. You got the financial aid packages. You’ve pretty much made your decision. You’ve spent all of your allowance/job money on paraphernalia that you’re wearing daily to school—Ugh. School. “We still have to go?” Your classmate groan. Of course, even though you all have already been accepted to your respective institutions and want to go to the next step (and finally move out of the house!).

What about the people you met? Where are they going? And oh Lord, I need a roommate. The roomate. And there are still more scholarships you can grab; get on it! Wait, you’ve still have homework?! No way. And then some of those people that you met and really want to go to school with may go somewhere else, and you have to convince them that the school that you’re going to is the best (because it is, naturally).

Don’t forget about those IB and AP exams that you’ve been waiting years to take. Forgot about those, didn’t you? Yeah you did. Are you gonna give up now, after six years of breaking your back, because you got excited about college? Probably. I’m going to ________________. I don’t need those stinking exams!

And you still have nightmares twice a week about getting the creepy roommate at The Best College In The World©.

No New Notifications

I deleted the Facebook App from my phone. I haven’t been on the site in four days. And you know what?

It’s awesome. Haven’t missed anything. The people that I actually enjoy talking to still talk to me. the people I still need to communicate with are on Twitter or have a cell phone. It’s nice not being addicted to the notification icon anymore. But I must say, so many services use it that it’s a pain not to have sometimes. But I’m still doing ok.

Facebook

Facebook has been bothering me for the past few months with the following issues:

  • Privacy
  • Time
  • “Friends”
  • Photos

I really want to be able to pretty much say whatever I want to say in my blog/twitter/etc. They’re my thoughts. A number of times, I’ve gotten into trouble based on whatever I’ve said in a status or comment. I also don’t like the ‘Timeline’ feature: I don’t want any one of my 1200+ ‘friends’ to creep on my middle school self. So not cool.

Facebook is a huge time sink. Really. It’s very hard to not resist checking to see if you have “One New Notification”. And since every update pushes to my phone, it’s even harder to resist. And you know what happens on Facebook. Nothing.

I don’t have 1200+ friends. I know 1200+ people, but they’re all not my friends. I haven’t even met some of them, and I certainly couldn’t list all of them. But, for some reason, there seems to be a psychological need to have a lot of ‘friends’ or a lot of ‘likes’, etc. I really only need about 100 of them, if that.

I looked weird 5 years ago. You don’t need to see me. I don’t wanna see me either; that’s what iPhoto is for. Not to mention the obsessions with profile pictures: gotta have the best one with the most likes. I’m sick of the games.

Now, even with all of that said, Facebook is very helpful for contacting those people whom I don’t have numbers for. Regarding groups, Facebook is a great way to contact large groups of people. If I did quit, I would put myself at a disadvantage.

This leads to the biggest issue with quitting Facebook: It’s ubiquity. It’s everywhere. You can sign in to anything with Facebook. Play games with Facebook. Email with Facebook. Everything. It’s hard to get away.

Thank you, Mark Zuckerberg. Enjoy my personal data.

Affirmative Action

So a white friend of mine told me that he thinks affirmative action is reverse discrimination against whites.

…What?

He’s got to be kidding. Affirmative action is a way to balance the huge skew towards whites in higher education. My black latina friend and I discussed it as we transitioned to our next class of the day. He said that he has less of a chance of getting to college if we had equal scores/credentials. And that’s correct. Because he’s our age and white, he doesn’t really understand the minority experience and what minorities in the US have been through — hate crimes, discrimination, marginalization, etc. — and thinks that it’s “all better now”. I don’t blame him; it’s easy to think so, especially since he hasn’t experienced what it’s like being a minority.

But he doesn’t hear the stories my parents have told me about discrimination against them even today. He doesn’t know the profound psychological difference in experiences between my grandparents and his. He doesn’t know what it’s like going to a church where practically no one looks like you. The class may be the same, but the race clearly is not.

He doesn’t know about the looks I get from mothers as they walk past me with their daughters. He can’t imagine the feeling of isolation and brokenness I feel as a mother grabs her daughter’s hand as they pass near me, only to let go after a few meters of distance separate us. As this article by a Stanford alumni illuminates, 300 years of history can’t be fixed in 30 years.

America, we have a long way to go.

Commit

We all need a little help in forming habits. I’m absolutely terrible at it. But I have just the app to help!

Commit for iOS.

It’s clean, simple, and beautiful. Commit keeps a checklist of things that you’ve done daily or not, based on that you’ve entered. For items that you’ve done, a corresponding light will turn on. It will also state how many consecutive days you’ve done that task. If you don’t do it, the number drops back to zero. That’s not fun.

Plus, it’s only a buck! Go form some good habits.

Suspenders!

So, the mysterious item that I alluded to earlier has arrived: suspenders! In my quest for fashion independence from the masses, I’ve decided to give the under appreciated men’s suspenders a try. They came in the mail from Topman, and are pretty nice. They’re thinner than I thought they would be, and the clasps look a little flimsy, but we’ll see how they fare over time.

I didn’t get quite the shock from the general populace that I expected, but then again, my classmates are most likely used to my fashion quirks by now. It was only a matter of time right?

The oddest thing about wearing them is the fit; belts rest on your waist, so your pants hug your waist also. With suspenders (and braces), they tend to have a tendency to ride up a bit (I just loosened them to ensure plenty of room :D ) and they feel a bit different. Suspenders also cause the shirt to fit on the body differently because the suspenders press against the torso. It’s odd, but it can cause the shirt to bunch up in the ‘center panel’ between the two straps.

Warnings and tips:

  • Don’t wear suspenders and a belt.
  • If your under 60, try not to get ones that are thicker than an inch or you’ll look old. Better too thin than two wide.
  • There are two major types of suspenders/braces: X and Y. Y suspenders are for the 60+ age bracket.
  • A pair of suspenders with cheap clasps is an embarrassing accident waiting to happen — they will snap.
  • Have fun with them! Show them off to your friends.