will's insanity

The Ramblings of a Mad Man

Different Opinions are not Mental Disorders

First off, in order to understand some of this post, you will have to read an article. No, it’s not boring, and yes, you will need to at least glance over it to understand the context of this post. So without further ado, here is the article:


Now that you’re back from your glancing, let’s discuss this bull shall we:

First off, like the title suggests, A DIFFERENT POLITICAL OPINION DOES NOT REQUIRE THERAPY!!! Seriously, get out of your echo chambers, it’s really not so bad out here in the real world. Conversations usually do not result in fist fights or shouting matches if both parties can be reasonable about how they listen to the other person. In no way, shape, or form, does a political opinion on the other side of the aisle constitute an emergency worthy of counseling. As a person with a mental illness who has used counseling, the idea that just because you heard an opinion you didn’t agree with requires you to go to counseling is insulting. It seems like you’re equating mental illnesses with opinions. Let me outline the difference for you reeeeaaaallllyyyy clearly: one of these is afflicting 1 in 5 Americans today, while 1 in 25 have these so intense it inhibits their ability to function in a normal life (thank you NAMI). The other is a serious of social, economic, and political facts formed into “a view or judgement formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge.” (thank you google). Now, which one of these is the mental illness, and which one is a fucking opinion? Hint: it’s not number 2.

Second: let’s talk about this whole left vs right thing. Both sides have become so bogged down in personal attacks and extremes that they seem to have forgotten their core values, so let me outline them for you: To be an American liberal, you need to support, in some shape or form, a more involved federal government (examples: Social Security, federal standards for food, drugs, etc.). To be an American conservative, you need to support, in some shape or form, a less involved federal government(States right to education, states right to tax those within it’s borders). Now, I am SOOOO grossly over-simplifying here, and I know my political science friends are gonna tear me up for this one (sorry in advance guys), but this is the heart of the issue. There are implications, for sure, but you know what doesn’t work? Either of these things in their entirety. Seriously, the only time that we as a nation thrive is when we come together for a productive conversation, highlighting the differences and coming to a compromise, gaining and losing ground in legislation, making the government work! To say that this conversation is worthy of therapy? Really?! This whole nation was founded on enlightenment principles of dialogue and debate! To equate either of those things with those who have mental illnesses and to take away resources that they need to survive most of the time?! Also, really?!! Just because you cannot FATHOM a world where your ideas are the only ones that matter does not mean you are mentally ill. To paraphrase: “An inconvenience on your end does not constitute an emergency on mine.” Just because your ignorant self cannot understand that conversations are necessary to democracy does not mean you get to demean the profession that aids millions of Americans every day.

Now while this was mainly focused more towards the isolated liberal movements you find on college campuses, it is equally applicable to the isolated conservative movement as well. However, I will include one point that I need to make VERY clear, but that I am sure is understood by the conservative movement: Mental illness is not a sign of weakness. Mental illness is not a sign of “being a snowflake”. Being “Triggered” is not meant for those who cannot handle different opinions (we call them indignant). That word is meant for those with PTSD, or Bi-polar, or Depression, or a variety of other mental illnesses where certain smells, sounds, tastes, sights, or tactile sensations provoke an attack of some sort. Understand, and this part really applies to both sides, that mental illnesses are exactly that: illnesses. And that therapy is a tool to help cure it.

So what now? Well, I’ll tell you what; I consider myself fairly liberal. I support a single payer system, I think that the federal government should guarantee fundamental human rights as outlined by the United Nations, and that those should be non-negotiable. The states can handle a lot of other things, and they have a lot of power to manipulate them according to who gets elected to the house and the senate. These are opinions of mine; and they will remain my opinions until another person can come along and show me enough evidence to convince me otherwise. I can change my opinions.

I can’t change my depression on my own.

I can’t magically say “Poof, go away now! It wasn’t fun, don’t come back!”

That is the biggest difference of all: Opinions are consciously formed by us as  a species. We look at the way that each of us sees the world and form judgments based on that. Mental illnesses are not consciously formed. I did not choose to have depression and anxiety one day. No, mine came from various areas, and is a result of how my brain was made.

So in short, sweet, and very stark terms: To the campus left mentioned in this article and represented around the world: GET OVER YOURSELF! HAVE A DAMN CONVERSATION OUTSIDE YOUR FRIEND GROUP FOR ONCE IN YOUR LIFE!

thank you for taking the time for letting me rant. Now go and converse with each other, and make one another, this country, and this world, a better place to live.


Remembering the Gone,Looking Towards the Future

Screw 2016
Welcome 2017

Before we move forward, I think that it’s important that we remember those who inspired us with their talent, whether that’s music or TV or movies. Now, obviously a lot of people won’t be on here, But I’m going to do a majority of my favorites. Here we go:

Alan Rickman: “I do take my work seriously and the way to do that is not to take yourself too seriously.”

Glenn Frey: “We set out to become a band for our time. But sometimes if you do a good-enough job, you become a band for all time.”

Joe Alaskey: “HA! you never catch the rabbit being this heroic!” (From him as Daffy Duck)

Erik Bauersfeld: “It’s a trap!”

Morley Safer: “What does it say about us that people who are considered defective are instinctively caring and compassionate?”

Muhammad Ali: “It’s just a job. Grass grows, birds fly, waves pound the sand. I beat people up.”

Anton Yelchin: “I want things to be characters and not me. Why would I want to play me?”

Ralph Stanley: “I’m thankful that I have lived long enough to become a legend, and I hope I deserve it.”

Elie Wiesel: “I have not lost faith in God. I have moments of anger and protest. Sometimes I’ve been closer to him for that reason.”

Kenny Baker: “They don’t always use dwarfs, unfortunately. They shouldn’t be allowed to do that! How dare they do ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ and not have dwarfs!”

Gene Wilder (Because I deeply enjoyed his work, he gets four. Get over it): “I never used to believe in fate. I used to think you make your own life, and then you call it fate.”
“All right, you win. You win. I give. I’ll say it. I’ll say it. I’ll say it. DESTINY! DESTINY! NO ESCAPING THAT FOR ME! DESTINY! DESTINY! NO ESCAPING THAT FOR ME!”
“The suspense is terrible… I hope it’ll last.”
“What did you expect? “Welcome, sonny”? “Make yourself at home”? “Marry my daughter”? You’ve got to remember that these are just simple farmers. These are people of the land. The common clay of the new West. You know… morons.”

John Glenn: “There is still no cure for the common birthday.”

Carrie Fisher: “I don’t think Christmas is necessarily about things. It’s about being good to one another, it’s about the Christian ethic, it’s about kindness.”

Debbie Reynolds: “I gave it all that I had, and it’s gratifying that others seem to be receiving it so well.”

William Christopher: (an exchange with Col. Potter)

Father Mulcahy: Colonel, an ambulance has turned over in the compound, you better come on the double.

Col. Potter: Anybody hurt?

Father Mulcahy: Well, the driver’s a bit shaken-up, but he’ll be all right.

Col. Potter: No-one else inside?

Father Mulcahy: No.

Col. Potter: Thank God.

Father Mulcahy: I already did.”

These men and women meant so much to us. They inspired our movements, our passions, our humor. They lived in and for the moment of each day of their lives. And, as I am sure many of you are, as you mourn your personal loved ones lost in the absolutely GARBAGE year, remember this: The world continues to turn, God continues to love and comfort you regardless of your beliefs, and your life is worth living just as these people above had. Meet 2017 head on, with a resolve and a determination that could only come from perseverance. Keep your chin up, fight back against the injustice you see, speak up for those who need it, and live life with humor and energy sometimes only found in movies.

Your life is your own. How will you use it?

(For just this point alone, I’m going to post a couple of links to videos you should watch)

Happy new year!




The Prayer after Election


so this election cycle sucked. The results are in. A man whose track record with the economy, race, gender, equality, and everything else are less than sub-par. There are to many people sad and angry however to react in such a way. Allow me then to offer a prayer for tonight and the next four years. If you are not the praying type, then focus and meditate on the meaning of these words and to find peace within yourself.

Now, as children of God, let us pray:

We come before you a broken and beaten children. We confess our failure to love our neighbor as ourselves, and we beg your forgiveness for our trespasses. Lord, as we continue into the years to come, allow us to remember that Your love is our guide. Keep us from harming each other with our actions, words, and Facebook posts. Guide us, and help us to be accepting of those we fear, to love our enemies as ourselves. Like 2nd Timothy says, for us to “Have nothing to do with stupid and senseless controversies; you know that they breed quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kindly to everyone, an apt teacher, patient, correcting opponents with gentleness.” Help us to respond with kindness and understanding, to not succumb to the hatred and alienation of those different than us in political affiliation. Bring us peace in knowing that You keep us safe with you, and that your son Jesus Christ, died to bring us closer to Your love.

Give us the courage to use the Spirit within us to move and to speak out of clear conscience and reason. To motivate us beyond party lines to work with each other to help those who need it the most. Bring us peace as we move forward into the unknown, but comforted that we as a people of all backgrounds are guided by your everlasting peace and everlasting love.

We pray all of this in the name of Jesus Christ, in the manner he taught us to pray:
Our father,

Hallowed be thy name

Thy kingdom come

On earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread

and forgive us our trespasses

as we forgive those who trespass against us.

Lead us not into temptation

but deliever us from evil

For thine is the kingdom

The power

and the glory forever


Thoughts pt. 2 or Why I Fear Independence

So this next installment of thoughts from my brain is more personal rather than political. Just a way for me to get some things from out of my head and on to a piece of paper (or in this case, on a computer screen). So anyway, here goes:

I am afraid.

Not of the election, not of a person, not even of this coming school year. No, what I am afraid of is after the year. True independence for me as an adult: bills, insurance, taxes, etc., alongside seminary and other personal conundrums.

You see, I know I’m lucky. I am very aware of the state of my circumstances. I will be able to graduate almost debt free from my undergrad thanks to my dad’s GI bill, and I haven’t had to pay a bill yet in my life. Trust me, having gone into poorer communities and poorer countries, I know how INCREDIBLY lucky I am, and there is nothing anyone can do to convince me otherwise. I am afraid that my lack of experience will be my downfall. That I will have been so used to this that going into the real world will break me down and apart like nothing else can.

I don’t know how to shop for insurance of any kind, I can’t do my own taxes, and I certainly can’t tell you how to find a decent apartment of any kind. In other words, in the real world:

I’m utterly useless.

Now, I can learn these things (and trust me, I intend to) in the future, through finance classes and mistakes and all sorts of experience, but for some reason that doesn’t make me feel any better.

After this year, there will be some HUGE decisions to make, ones that I am terrified to make by myself, but ones that have to be done. I know I’m financially screwed for the rest of my life as being a pastor doesn’t pay that much at all. I also know I’m not alone in this thought. A number of my recently graduated friends from college have expressed similar sentiments, so I’m positive that I’m not alone in anything I say here. I’m 21 years old for crying out loud! If this is the hardest my life gets, then damn, I am the luckiest man alive. If not that, then God must be intensely helping me in so many ways, just like He does everyday.

But I’m still afraid.

I know what is expected of me: to put my fear and my worry into God’s hands and have Him guide me through these next, incredibly stressful, nine months, but still: When you have anxiety as a symptom/cause/co-conspirator of depression, these things bounce around in your head like nobody’s business, and it almost feels like they’re shouting at you for being a failure at basic adulting.

Joshua 1:9 (NRSV) says “I hereby command you: Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

This one verse has stuck with me for a long, long time. Mainly because of a VBS song, but still, a long time, and has become a comfort to me in times of such panic. It may not make me completely better, but knowing that I am not by myself in these thoughts among peers and knowing that while right now I’m useless in the real world, I won’t always be. And even though I feel afraid, I know that God is there beside me. Maybe not taking my fear away, but helping me to control and combat it in so many ways. Personal decisions and financial responsibilities be damned, I have a God that won’t let me stray, a family to help support me, a girlfriend who loves me and keeps me sane, and friends to make the journey SO much easier. I may not be useful now, but I’m definitely not hopeless. There’s too much to look forward to in the future and so much to do in the present that fear can’t control me or dictate how I react.

And it sure as hell never will.

Thoughts Pt. 1

To much hatred. To much pain. So much death. This is the reality we live in. To many times have we as a people failed to speak out against injustice and tyranny, racism and oppression, poverty and homelessness. This is not acceptable. I am making my voice heard, and want to do something.

Most of you know that I try to keep my personal opinions off of Facebook. I’ll share articles and comment every once in a while, but I have not had a rant on Facebook in recent memory. My banner picture says “Don’t speak unless you can improve the silence,” a quote by Argentinian author and poet Jorge Luis Borges. Well, I don’t know if this will improve the silence or just add to the noise, but I’m tired of keeping my mouth shut. My opinions are my own, and I hold to my right to have them.

On the issue of the sexual assault of the student by the swimmer: Seriously, what the hell. We can give a break to this person, let them get away with this and not give any justice to the victim?! Are we serious right now, because I don’t think we are. There is a lot of lip service on BOTH sides of the aisle right now about how we care for the victim or care about mental health, but sweet FA is being done about it, and the shit that should be done isn’t happening. such crap.

On the BLM movement: I stand behind this movement. I believe that their mission to root out the racism and bigotry that exists inside of some police forces is incredibly important. The men and women with these attitudes are examples of people who don’t need the power that being a cop comes with. Same goes for politicians with these attitudes, because hate does nothing but breed more violence.

On the Police forces of the United States: I believe that the majority of you are good people. You do your job, and the difficulty is something I do not doubt, and I fully support you in your occupation. You make the hardest decisions day in and day out, without a single doubt in my mind that you may regret some of those decisions, but that they were necessary to make. Thank you for protecting us as Americans at home.

On the above related issues: Both groups and the people that support them need to have meaningful conversations. Both groups need to be both internal and externally accountable to the other. Everybody needs to realize that tempers are a thing, and that they must be controlled. Violence is never the answer.

On the election: Yes, I do support some of the things that Bernie Sanders stood for. Yes, there is a “Birdie” sticker on my laptop. I do not, however, think he has any chance in hell at getting elected, even if you write him in (because that’s not how the election system works!) I do however agree with the statement that a vote not for Hillary is a vote for Drumpf. As much as it sucks, and as much as I respect your right to vote for whoever you want to, I really don’t want a racist, bigoted, misogynistic, bankrupt asshole who can’t keep his story straight as a president. You may not trust her, but at the moment, she’s your only choice. The libertarians have no way to win this election, and any independents that might be running probably won’t even show up on the ballot. We know who Hillary is. We know what she has done. But just because you don’t trust her (because, let’s be honest, who trusts the person they vote for) doesn’t mean you shouldn’t vote for her. She has the experience, the expertise, and the knowledge to do her job.

On the e-mail scandal: You know, what she did was wrong. The FBI, however, has recommended not prosecuting her. Why? Because the punishment is administrative, not criminal.  Yes, she sent some classified data over unsecured e-mails, meaning out of 30,000 emails, 110 were classified, and far fewer were top secret. let’s be generous and assume that 1/4 of the 110 were top secret. 27. 27 out of 30,000 emails. .001%. good Lord above, let’s not make this bigger than it is.

The Hidden Secret

Depression isn’t always obvious

So before you begin reading this article, please go watch the video. I know it’s a bunch of click-bait bullshit, but it’s definitely worth the watch.

Are you back? Good.

So as I was supposed to be doing a paper and failing miserably at it, I began scrolling through facebook, wondering what sort of ridiculous posts I would find. Then I came across this video, noticed it was from the buzzfeed page, and immediately was like “Well, here goes auto-play facebook.” So I watched it because, you know, procrastination. As by now I hope you’re sure by now, it starts out basically how all videos of this nature start out, with some dopey looking dude just kind of going through the motions.

But then, at the very end, shit hits the fan, and this has now become my new favorite video to show friends what depression looks like. Honestly, if you’re just reading this and not watching the video, PLEASE go watch it, because from now on, SPOILERS!

So anyone who knows me semi-well knows I don’t put up with emotional triggering bullshit. For me, the most powerful thing you can present to someone is numbers. If you can show that you have facts to back up your point and don’t use emotional appeal on me, congrats, you have earned my respect for your opinion. Now, some things can’t be backed up by cold, hard, facts, but so long as your argument is logical, we won’t have a problem.

Mini rant over, I have watched a lot of videos on depression. TED talks, scishow, vloggers, etc., and I have discovered that the ones who tend to keep emotions in check and even tell personal stories to tug at your heart strings are the ones that are the most effective and pulling a sense of emotion from me. But this video was different, even with the emotional aspect. It did really well in shattering my expectations of what was to come, even as I was thinking “I have seen this all before, this had better get interesting and different quick or else I’m leaving.”, the video managed to shock me with the guy in the background, barely noticeable until he takes his own life, being the focus of the story, instead of the guy we’re shown. Honestly, I resonated with it. it was very true to what depression is actually like.


So I guess you could say this is me announcing to the world that I have clinical depression. Now, I don’t want your babying, I don’t want your dumb-ass comments of “It gets better!” (I know it gets better. If I didn’t think that, you wouldn’t be seeing this right now). or “Just stop being depressed! cheer up!” (you’re an idiot if you think depression works that way, go do some research). Hell, I don’t even want to be coddled, I just want understanding that I’m going to have some shitty days in the future. I’ve come to terms with it, I know life isn’t perfect, but I also know it’s worth it.

Anywho, back to the point: With depression, the best description I can offer is one by Andrew Solomon, whose clarification  is “The opposite of depression is not happiness, but vitality…”. When depression hits, you feel as if nothing will ever go right, that even things you enjoy like sports or video games or music all seems to have lost it’s luster. Depression feels like somebody took every ounce of motivation and sucked it out of you, and nothing can be enjoyed like you remember. And for lack of better terms, it sucks.

But, the thing that I always try to remember whenever I get to that place and want to end it all, and the thing I try to tell people if I ever hear that they are going through something similar, is that they are loved. That if anything happens, they will be missed. There is no one on this earth who is unloved by someone. Even if you’re not religious in any way, there is always somebody who can look at you and see someone worth caring for, worth missing, worth their time. We are worth something, and even when the thoughts that seem impossible to block tell us we’re worthless, or that we fuck up so many times that there is nothing left to redeem us, the necessity to remember that we are loved is humongous.  That we are not alone.

That we are never alone.

That sometimes, while it may not seem as if anything could go right, there is ALWAYS a light in the darkness.

Final thoughts: If you reader or anyone you know is going through this, a couple things;

  1. Get help from a professional
  2. Find a trustworthy friend to help you through the toughest times
  3. Know that you are not your depression. it is a disease, and like any disease it can be helped.
  4. Learn all you can about it. Links below.

That’s it. I’m going to bed now because it’s 330 in the morning (sorry mom and dad!) and I’m tired. links below for people who want to learn more or need help.

Depression, the secret we share by Andrew Solomon

Why We Choose Suicide by Mark Henick

Depression: What You Need to Know

Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255

Gate A-4

Source: Gate A-4


In today’s lesson, which is another graded assignment (yeah, yeah, get over yourself), we are gonna talk about why rap, specifically gangster rap, is really not my cup of tea. In fact you could even say that I really don’t like it at all. Now, I will completely preface this with the fact that I don’t really know a whole lot about the genre, but the loose research and things of that nature hopefully there might be a little understanding, but it will mostly be personal opinion. Like me, hate me, I really don’t care. Anywho, onto the show.

So what’s bringing this up is actually a conversation that we had in the class about the rap group N.W.A., and I tried (and failed to some extent) to argue about what I didn’t like about rap. Maybe it was the fact that I wasn’t allowed to listen to rap as a kid, but I never had the exposure and experience with rap as others did. It really wasn’t a genre that I was interested in, even after the ban on the music had lifted. I didn’t enjoy the beat, I didn’t enjoy the speaking style, but I think overall I didn’t enjoy or even like the lyrical content, and that’s really the main point of this post. Why I don’t enjoy rap because of the lyrical content.

Now I know I was born with a certain “head start” if you will, being a middle class, straight, white male. However, with my dad being Navy, I moved like crazy, so my childhood was not the standard in the united states (third culture kids FTW). Classic rock and classic bluegrass was my music drug of choice because it’s what my family listened to, and I enjoyed it. When, however, friends wold play rap for me, the brassiness of the lyrics just threw me off. When you have lyrics from something like KISS that have innuendos (see “Black Diamond”) rather than direct statements of rap artists (see N.W.A. “I Ain’t Tha 1”). with something that direct from a person, it was a bit of a culture shock. And being cultured shocked is hard for me to be, having moved around a lot. I guess that just shows that the biggest shock of all can come from your own country.

Another point that I would like to bring up is the topic of relatabillity. From what little I know about song writing, it is generally hoped that  a song writer writes about what they know and their personal experiences, or of how they overcame certain situations. A lot of modern rock songs deal with being inadequate, depression, love and loss, and even some more political topics such as war and homelessness. Having a dad in the military, having had feelings of loss and inadequacy, I can identify with those. Some of the lyrics are definitely more direct than others, such as The Color Morale’s “Suicide;Stigma”, talking about the taboo surrounding those things, or Five Finger Death Punch and “Wrong Side of Heaven” talking about the mistreatment of veterans in the military when they get home. These songs I can identify with. However, I can’t identify with lyrics dealing with the drug industry, living in the ghetto, being shot at, and all of the themes that perpatrate the gangsta rap industry. They sometimes tell extremely interesting stories of growing up and their experiences there, but I can’t relate with something like that. There’s no common identity there for me to latch onto. Even looking at the little rap that I do listen to deals more with a personal internal struggle (Watsky ft. Kate Nash “Hey Asshole”) than anything else.

So yeah, that’s my “rant”(?) with all of this. I give credit where credit is due to lyricists and songwriters when they deserve it, even if it’s just a changing of a political area or the focus of the public, because they have far more talent than I do. I may not identify with the majority of the rap genre or even enjoy it half the time, but a talented lyricist and talented composers all have a creative get-up-and-go about them, guiding them to writing masterpieces and propelling them into history.

Just don’t expect to listen to it.

The content of the genre known as “Metalcore”

So this is an interesting post. Probably the first time a blog post has ever really been written for a class, at least for me. I’ve decided to take some of my favorite songs and analyze the content of their lyrics.

Now some people might be saying “Wait, metalcore has lyrics? I thought it was all just incomprehensible screaming!” and on the screaming part, you’d be right! Metalcore is defined as “a broad fusion genre of extreme metal and hardcore punk. The name is an amalgam of the names of the two genres, distinguished by its emphasis on breakdowns, which are slow, intense passages that are conducive to moshing.”(Wikipedia) There is usually a lot of screaming involved in this genre but it’s not incomprehensible, and depending on the type of song, there is usually a fair bit of meaning in these lyrics, and they aren’t as angst-ridden, although that seems to be a large theme.

Let’s start with the first song off of an amazing album: “Provision” by August Burns Red off of the album Rescue and Restore. Before we start, please go take a listen. it’s an amazing song, I promise it’s worth the time.


Now that you’re back, we’re gonna be looking at the second verse. It goes a little something like this

“I am the deceiver, I’m not getting any better
I’m the thief, the whore, the murderer
It’s times like these, It’s times like these
you forget to remember who you are
The way up is down, truth is found when life throws you out
And kicks you to the curb
I’m just as much the problem as the man behind bars
He did with his business what I do in my heart
You wronged me, you crossed me, I’ll never let it ruin me
Lessons are learned deep down within my heart, in my heart
The worst men make the best stories come true
The past is a part of me
But not who I am”

These lyrics are about how the band was wronged by someone financially and they thought he was getting his just deserts. However, the singer and screamer for ABR realized that even though this man had cheated them out of a lot of money and had done them wrong, they had things just as bad going on inside of them. The Christian influence on the band is extremely obvious here when he talks about what he has done wrong in his heart. He uses these lyrics to show that even though he has done wrong, he forgives himself and is forgiven by God. But now, we are going to make an extreme tonal shift in lyrical content. We are now going to go to the amazing world of Atreyu.

Probably my favorite band of all time, Atreyu is back with an amazing album, called Long Live. Musically and lyrically it has really come into it’s own after the band has returned from a four year long hiatus. One of my favorite songs off of the album is the song “Do You Know Who You Are?” take a listen:


“It’s the end of the world and nobody cares
We got problems of our own
So nobody stares at themselves in the mirror anymore
A good hard look can shake you to the core, so,”

These are the lyrics that hit you when you first start the song. Alex Varkas, lead screamer for Atreyu has stated in his commentary for this song that it is about how “a lot of people need to look in the mirror and see if they’re doing something to make society better or even just help the small world around them… Or are you just a self-serving son of a bitch and a part of the problem.” Again, another song, albeit a little more straightforward with this idea of reflection and change. This song really gets you to question if you are doing things for the betterment of humanity as a whole or if you’re living on your own.

Honestly and truly, there seem to be a lot of lyrics about change rather than angst or self loathing. Suicide;Stigma by The Color Morale:

“When I speak such a word,
Are you uneasy with how it’s heard?
The stigma will never leave
Unless all of us can just start talking.”

Throne by Bring Me The Horizon:

“So you can throw me to the wolves
Tomorrow I will come back
Leader of the whole pack
Beat me black and blue
Every wound will shape me
Every scar will build my throne”

Again, change and continued improvement are the halmarks of this genre lyrically. Yes the screaming is there, yes it’s not for everyone’s taste, but the thing you have to admit is that lyrically, it’s better than the number one song right now “The Hills” by The Weekend:

I only love it when you touch me, not feel me
When I’m fucked up, that’s the real me
When I’m fucked up, that’s the real me, babe

Something to ponder the next time something hits number one.

10 research tips for finding answers online

As a history major, research is probably one of the biggest pains in the ass (alongside 12 page papers). These were actually fairly helpful.

TED Blog


Before Danielle Thomson was our TED Prize researcher, she wrote trivia for Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? and spent years finding difficult-to-source info for The Late Show with David Letterman. And she has quickly established herself as our staff secret weapon. When one of us can’t get our hands on a piece of information that we need, we turn to Danielle and — voila! — there it is.

We asked Danielle to share some of her best research tips to help you in those “why can’t I find this?” moments. Here’s what she had to say:

  1. There are no new questions. Have a research question? Trust me, it’s been asked before. Put your exact question into quotations as a search term, and you will find, at the very least, a lead to your answer. Want to find out how much of the ocean has been explored? Type…

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