Posted in Academic/Professional, Life/Other, Military/Politics

1984- George Orwell

Last night I just finished a classic novel that has been somewhat overlooked in my opinion. 1984 is an absolutely amazing book that includes a lot of interesting points about governments in power.

To start I’d like to point out that this post will contain spoilers. I am aware that the book has been out for quite awhile but to those who plan on reading it- be warned.

Continue reading “1984- George Orwell”

Posted in Language Learning/Travel

First Unscripted Video

As very few people know, I try to upload a video of me speaking in French to my YouTube channel once a week. Now not only does this not happen every week but they’re also very short and about random things that I think about ahead of time. However, today’s video I did not write a script for and I think I did pretty okay.

All of my pauses or incorrect pronunciations here would be the same of that as somebody who speaks English and isn’t good at last minute speeches (or whatever other factor makes us natives pause and say things like um or uh) and I am only speaking about a simple subject, my French lessons this week, but it is enough that I could hold a conversation which means that my goal of being conversationally fluent (B2) by the end of 2017 is looking more and more attainable everyday.

I realize (after watching it) that a decent amount of mistakes were made. Just something to work on.

Posted in Language Learning/Travel

Pre-Conversation Practice Nerves

This upcoming week I have scheduled my first in-person one-on-one conversation practice for my French. My French professor (with whom I’m Facebook friends with) saw that my goal was to reach a B2 level by the end of 2017, and as a result, has agreed to meet with me at least once a week for 30 minute sessions. In her response, she highlighted that she would also see if any of her francophone friends would Skype with me to help with this process. It was also pointed out that she will have me focus on a lot of listening because that was her struggle when she was learning English.


In addition to that, I got some more credits on italki, which means whenever I finalize my schedule I will be able to schedule some Skype French lessons. Finally, after writing this post I am going to the study abroad office to see if there are any francophone students that would like to have conversations with me.


All this practice with people is exactly how Benny Lewis says that languages are learned.

So why am I so nervous to actually talk to people instead of just burying myself in my phone or computer to use some software or TV show?

I consider myself an interesting person.

So why am I so nervous that I have no idea what I’ll talk about in most of these situations. Normally when I’m nervous I don’t shut up but since I’ll be using French I’m not sure what the reaction will be.

No more putting it off though, this is the perfect opportunity and if I pass it up then I have been lying to myself about actually wanting to learn a language.

Posted in Academic/Professional, Health/Fitness, Language Learning/Travel, Life/Other

New Goal

I know that I have been slacking on keeping this blog updated and I apologize for that. Now that school and work have begin it’s just a matter of trying to figure out a schedule and time for everything. Having band all the time doesn’t help with that either.

So far I am highly enjoying this semester. My classes are all going well, my schedule is working itself out and my hobbies are coming along nicely. I do spend a lot of time at marching band though, but that will end at the end of October and I’m supposedly doing it this year for the fun of it.

My goal for the past few and a half or so has been to dedicate as much of my time as I can to preparing myself to take the LSAT this past Saturday. I think it went well, I won’t find out for about 3 weeks and it also means that I’m able to take on a new goal.

Over the Summer I made a lot of progress in my French and while I was living alone I even had days where I used mostly French. Now since I haven’t made it my focus and my recent use of French has been just in the classroom, I have dropped on my level. This however, is my new goal.

In the 3 Summer months I was able to get to an A2 (or B1 on a good day) level in French. Which is great progress. Now I plan on getting to at least a B2 level by the end of 2017. My French teacher has already agreed to meet and talk with me in French after class to assist with this goal. Additionally, I have postponed my blue belt test in jiu-jitsu until April so that my focus will be entirely on improving my knowledge of French.

Posted in Religion

Unpopular Opinion: The Psalms

As I’m reading through the Bible everyday, I have finally made it to the Psalms. I don’t like this section that much because it’s not really a story, it’s just songs and prayers to God from (mostly) David.

Which is great, yes, David loves God and the Psalms being included obviously is a major stem from the Christian idea of worship and praise to the Lord. Those I agree with.

My idea here is that the Psalms don’t really need to be in the Bible. They’re important but they don’t really fit in. However, I suggest that they still need to be important to the Christian faith and they should be included in worship but as a separate book, like a hymnal.

There are more things about the Bible that have raised some good questions. Why is it out of order? Where does Job come from and why is he selected to be tried? Why is Leviticus still relevant at all?

I plan to talk about these topics in the upcoming weeks.

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

X2 (2003)

The second X-Men film makes its debut in my Marvel watch-through. This movie really highlights the relationship struggle between Humans and Mutants, it literally starts a war.

This movie also really starts to dig into Wolverine’s past, with the introduction of Stryker, one of the people responsible for Wolverine’s transformation.

At the beginning we get a good introduction to Nightcrawler and we also get a sneak peak at Colossus as a teenager during the invasion of the school scene.

This movie does have some decent plot holes. For starters, there is the ever-obvious one of why the X-Men should be in their own universe. If they’re having this much trouble with Mutants then why are non-Mutant superheros (like Spider-Man) not a problem in this universe (yet).

Additionally, the acid-like substance poured into the back of Mutants’ necks. What is it, where did it come from and why is it so powerful?

As we continue through the movie we get introduced to another villain although no real name or backstory is given, comic nerds would know her as Lady Deathstrike. Not very well known or popular, also with long powerful fingernails doesn’t exactly come off as super intimidating. Where did she come from and why does she have powers like Wolverine? Before she gets the chance to say anything Wolverine fills her with the remaining liquid Adamantium (that I guess we’re supposed to assume was just chilling there since Wolverine’s transformation).

A major overlooked point I feel is that Professor X essentially killed (or basically mentally tortured) every Mutant and then every Human on the planet and everybody just kinda lets it go. Talk about evil.

Finally, the end with Jean Grey going out and killing herself so that they could escape seems very unneeded. She easily could’ve helped fix the ship from the inside and even if not, you’re telling me this super advanced jet can’t keep them safe from a bunch of water? I like how they had the faint outline of a phoenix at the end rising out of the water obviously hinting to her importance in the next movie.

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

Daredevil (2003)

Part of my Marvel watch-through.

The Daredevil movie was enjoyable but had a variety of dilemmas. For starters, Elektra dies in this movie despite just being introduced. Like, in her first fight she gets stabbed with her own sword. But yet they keep Bullseye alive. What’s with the lack of his origin as well? They just jump right in with no backstory on the bad guy.

The actual Daredevil is very well put together though and I think the Kingpin is also a very good actor choice for this movie.

Despite the movie being good, I feel like how useless Daredevil is gets overlooked. Like yes ok he’s a blind vigilante but he only patrols one section of New York City? If it happens outside of Hell’s Kitchen just he just say “yea call Spider-Man, I only handle this neighborhood”.

The Stan Lee cameo is quick and right at the beginning. When Daredevil is walking around blind, he stops Stan Lee from crossing the busy street while reading a newspaper.

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

End of Summer Update- Media/Pop Culture

If you’ve been following or randomly reading my blog you’ll see that most of my posts have been in this category.

I am continuing with my Marvel watch-through and I hope to watch Daredevil (2003) within the next few days. With college starting yesterday it’s difficult for me to keep on my Summer schedule of activities. Also in the movie category my girlfriend and I have been taking turns picking a movie series to watch and with this time being my choice I went with Lord of the Rings.

Video games have been less than active recently. I barely played over the Summer and now I’m definitely too busy to play. If I do I normally go with Civilization VI or if a friend is over I’ll go with Injustice: Gods Among Us or Call of Duty: Ghosts- Extinction.

I can’t seem to find the end of the Yugioh original series. I am about 15 episodes away and I am extremely disappointed with this final story arc. I highly enjoyed most of the series but I realize that many of the story-lines are very unnecessary. I am also in season 10 of Family Guy on Netflix. This has been going very smoothly but at this point I am starting to see a decline in the quality of jokes and I am ready to finish and move on. With just about 4 seasons left it’s going to be difficult. My girlfriend and I are watching Last Man Standing and I absolutely love that show. I can’t figure out why it was cancelled or why they switched the actress for the oldest daughter after season 1.

Finally we come to books. I have really increased my reading intake this Summer and it’s a habit that I would like to keep up with. I posted about when I finished the new Lorien Legacies book. I was also able to finish a book called Everything Is A Metaphor that was written by my jiu jitsu instructor, Leo Lefay. The beginning is all about jiu jitsu and it includes some great ways to look at the sport and the back of the book is a series of letters written to his oldest son about advice for different parts of life. Currently I am finishing my LSAT For Dummies book and will take a second pre-test before I take the actual LSAT (in 18 days). From there I will trade that book in for the book entitled Fluent in 3 Months, which was the start of the language learning program that I’ve been following. I’m hoping to really get a jump on my French after I am past the LSAT. I am also reading 1984 which I absolutely love and see frightening similarities within our own world governments today. Who could read 1984 without reading Animal Farm though? I finished Animal Farm a few nights ago and I very much enjoyed most of the book but I was very disappointed in the ending. I watched the CIA produced animated film many times when I was younger and it also had a different ending (that one was more satisfactory). The biggest reading challenge that I have taken on though is reading Le Tour du monde en quatre-vingts jours. It’s the original (French) version of Around the World in 80 Days. This is so that I can boost my French reading comprehension but it takes me a long time to read even one paragraph.

Posted in Religion

End of Summer Update- Religion

Now this category is not one that is updated that often. About mid to early Summer I finished my book on Buddhism. Now I am reading through the Qur’an and I am still making progress in the Bible.

In the Bible I am in the books of Psalms. They’re okay but I prefer the stories of the Old Testament to these songs. The book of Job was not very enjoyable either. When you hear that story it doesn’t seem that bad but the book is mostly just him complaining about his life with his friends. At the end it seems kind of rushed that God gave him back everything. There was some mentionings of a Leviathan, which ended up being described as a dragon and I feel like that is extremely overlooked.

The Qur’an so far has been decently surprising. It only calls for violence so far if they are being persecuted and talks a lot about giving to charity and learning the Qur’an. The biggest downside that I have seen is the belief that all religions are stems of Islam, just misinterpreted by various prophets and that it blatantly states that women are not equal to men.