Sunday, March 31, 2013

Boys (Argument)

I was very impressed by this article. Kimmel did a fantastic job of pinpointing the issues and problimatics of what's wrong with American masculinity today. I particularly liked the quote, "There's no question that there's a boy crisis. Virtually all the books cite the same statistics: boys are four to five times more likely to be diagnosed as emotionally disturbed, three times more likely to be diagnosed with attention deficit disorder, and fifteen times more likely to be victims of violent crime". This, to me, reminds me of a lecture I had in Physiological Psychology. We learned in that class that the Y chromosome is tied to a motherload of genetic disorders, Alzheimers, and a bunch of other diseases that are not prevalent in women, Men die earlier, are more prone to disease, and it makes me think that men are kind of more worse off then women due to their genetic disability. I really wish that I could write more on the subject but I have to tell you that I worked 3 doubles in a row, I'm babysitting my friend Jay's cat (who is super meow-y and annoying and I have to get up at 7am tomorrow so I did the reading and I'm fully prepared to discuss it in class on tuesday, but I have to sleep and I'm really looking forward to our class and everyone in it, Love you guys. I'm fading fast. I'm 22 years old but I feel like a 78 year old man. See you guys in class on Tuesday. In the next class I;d like to discuss the concept of masculinity and what that means to everyone, Love you guys/ Catch you on the flip side.


Thursday, March 28, 2013

For our final project, raeanne, Craig and I have chosen the topic of how teenagers are represented in the media in terms of drug culture and substance abuse. It's going to be rad.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Talking Points #7 (my life is in ruins)

I say that my life is in ruins because I worked a total of 48 hours at 3 different jobs in the past 3 days. It is now 9:39pm and I'm just now realizing that I can't find my RIC ID anywhere (I think I left it at the rec center) so I don't know my barcode, therefore I can't read the excerpt from Cinderella Ate My Daughter but I really wish I could. From the blogs I've been reading, I'm assuming it's a really interesting, relevant piece that I would totally read if I could. Just trying to be honest. However, I will blog about Brave, because I was in class for that and I'm choosing to write a reflection on it. Tomorrow I plan on obtaining a new RIC ID so that I won't make silly little mistakes like this again. Sorry, Professor Bogad.

To be honest, I really enjoyed Brave and drew a lot of different connections to what we have been learning in class. However, it pulled at my heartstrings due to the absent relationship that I have with my mother. I actually found myself almost tearing up at one point. BUT ANYWAY, I continuously thought about Christensen while watching Brave. The first thing that I noticed was all of the royal women in this film were tall, white, and skinny with long flowing locks. The most important man in the film (the father/king) was tall, HUGE and ugly. He sort of reminded me of the beast in Beauty and the Beast. But he's rich and has a castle so it totally doesn't matter.

I suppose the most personal reflection that I can make about Brave is the never-ending expectations that the princess was expected to live up to. "A princess should never put weapons on the table" and "A princess should be knowledgeable and compassionate" were some of the expectations that the main character in Brave had to live up to. I thought that those expectations are exactly what young girls in our country experience daily. "To be popular, you have to be skinny." and "To be loved by your family and friends, you have to do exactly what they want you to do," are some expectations that I had a tough time with in my adolescence. The main character was expected to marry young, take daily princess lessons and learn how to be a "lady". For example, I liked going to punk rock shows. I liked skateboarding, smoking pot, making art, getting piercings and tattoos. These are not "lady-like" interests, but I always kept true to myself and that's what I thought I had to do. I come from an extremely conservative, Republican, Catholic, racist and homophobic family (yes, I'm from New Hampshire) and for some reason I always rejected their ideals. I lived up to their expectations because I loved my parents. They fed me, paid for the roof over my head and are generally loving, wonderful people.

I can make a direct and obvious personal connection to Brave. I kept thinking about this when we were all watching the film and I can't help but to share it and hope that other people see the connection too. In the film, the princess gets fed up with her mother's expectations of her, runs away, gets all cocky when she finds about magic spells, casts a spell she regrets, turns it around, then her mother and her are forever changed, they love each other again and are both changed forever as human beings and all is well in the end. FANTASTIC. I got my first tattoo after a punk show in Lowell, MA at a tattoo party. I was 16 but nobody else knew I was that young. I got a little anchor tattooed on my foot and thought, "If I just wear socks, my dad will never know. I'll keep good grades in school, make it LOOK like I'm doing everything he expects of me, and hope that he'll never know." My dad saw my tattoo one day and kicked me out of the house. He told me that "anyone with that shit on their bodies is going against God and should not be allowed under my roof". It would have been easier to go to my mom's house, but she would have been equally disappointed. So what did I do? I got 3-4 friends together, bought a huge tent and lived in the woods for 2 months. Much like the princess in Brave, I ran away. I spent the entire time resenting my father for making me homeless. I was only 16 living in the woods with some crusty 20-something year old hippies. I pretended to be happy and self-sufficient. After 2 months of homelessness, my dad finally found out that I wasn't staying at my mom's house. He FREAKED out, cried, and demanded that I come home immediately. We had a long discussion about self-identity and how much I needed his support in whatever decisions I make. He just couldn't believe I was living in the woods for 2 months. I can't believe it either. Much like the film, I rejected the "social norms", stood up for myself, and in turn, my father now has 3 tattoos and we have the best relationship I could have ever asked for. That's my reflection.

I hope to hear about what everybody thought of the reading in the next class. Like I said before, I'm a total space cadet and lost my RIC ID but I will prevail in obtaining a new one so I WILL read the excerpt. I guess I'd just like to know about what everybody else made of the film, gender roles, stereotypes and what being a princess really means in terms of the film. That's all. See you guys.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Hi. I'm particularly interested in doing my final project on media representations of teenagers with substance abuse issues. I've noticed throughout the years that teenagers and drug culture have continuously been represented SUPER dramatically and negatively. Teenagers in the media with drug problems are portrayed as "rebels", "bad kids", "punks" or using substances to act out against their parents OR to fit in with the "cool kids".

I'm a Psychology major in the CDAS (Chemical Dependency and Addiction Studies) program and I work with teenagers struggling with addiction so I know how much that stigma bothers them. ALSO, the media, in recent years, has started to glamorize drug culture in music, popular television and other forms that influence teens. There are millions of media representations of teenagers with substance abuse issues and here are a few that I first thought of:

This girl has become flat from smoking pot.

This is a mixture of clips from Skins showing attractive teenagers getting f***ed up.

Look at that! Even the Biebz smokes the reef.

Wow-ee, Look at the size of that blunt! You go, Rhianna. 

More to come.