Showing posts from 2017

The Decision.

Today, in a 3-2 decision, net neutrality was repealed.

Movements often spring up out of seemingly nowhere nowadays, but don't often go anywhere. The case with net neutrality was different. I've never seen a movement grow so quickly. I've never seen so many people concerned over a single issue come together to cause a change.

It's so strange when we hear the words, "Your voice is important." Lately, it doesn't seem like it. How can a movement with so much momentum be shut down? How can the voices of over 80% of Americans be ignored so easily?

The net neutrality issue will change so... so many things. The internet will no longer serve as America's playground, library, teacher... or whatever you use the internet for. Access to sites will be limited. Everything from little blogs like this, to large sites like YouTube will no longer be available for free. All because of a selfish FCC chairman.

Typically, blogging isn't much of a challenge. I always hav…

Finals Study Guide

Howdy peeps! Here is a study guide that I created based on what DP was saying in class. I will include links to previous blog posts that may be helpful as well :)

1. Tone - how the author feels about what he/she is talking about. Some common tones are indifferent (not really caring), happy, excited, etc.

2. Mood - how the author's tone makes YOU feel. If the author speaks about something with a sad tone, it may give the poem a sad vibe. Or, the events in a story may give off some sort of mood. In Richard Cory, the guy committed suicide and it made the poem seem sad.

3. Diction - the specific words the author uses. Word choice. One author may utilize informal diction; he/she may use works like fuck and shit (me on a daily basis). Another author may utilize more formal diction; he/she may speak with a more advanced vocabulary.

4. Syntax - how the author arranges sentences. If an author writes really short sentences, that is a form of syntax. Similar to how an autho…

Immigrants in Our Own Land: Revisiting a Year Later

In class, we are reading and discussing the poem "Immigrants in Our Own Land" by Jimmy Santiago Baca. I read this poem last year, and cynical poetry-hating Lesley didn't get much out of it. This year is slightly different.

Having a sense of inner peace is important. Why? Because it makes everything around us seem less horrible. I mean, look at where we are now in time. We have a president that seemingly hates everyone. Slaves are being traded in foreign countries. People are attacking each other on the daily. It's like we're living in the apocalypse... kinda. You get the idea.

People define inner peace differently. For me, having inner peace means knowing that despite what's going on, everything will be okay in the end. It's knowing that after every bad event, life goes on and brings a lot of good events to balance the bad. It took me a long time to realize this myself. Last year, I wasn't anything like who I am today. Why? I didn't have a sense o…

The Art of Online Convos in a Nutshell

We've all been there. We've all been in a situation where we're talking to someone on social media. And some conversations are simple. Others may lead to something bigger. Conversations can start as a simple comment to an Instagram post, or in our case, a comment to a blog. It is important for us to know how to properly host a good online convo, especially since most of our course is online.

It's simple. I summarized the article on the course blog, The Art of Hosting Good Conversations Online, and decided to put it in a simple list of do's and don'ts.


Essentially what you want as a host is for people to feel welcomed to your blogs. You want people to be able to look at your blog and feel engaged to converse with others online. You want people to contribute. When people contribute and give you ideas, that leads to growth. Growth as a writer and growth as a person, really. As a host, you want to create an environment where people can contribute their idea…

Our American Literature Shoebox

Greetings, fellow readers! As I am writing this, y'all should be working on your journals, or reviewing vocabulary, or getting other shit done for this class. I hope you all are doing well with that, and of course, if you need assistance, I am always here to help.

It's been a while since I've posted on my blog. When you reach your senior year, and deadlines for everything being to flood your mind, you'll understand why it's been more than a month since I've posted. But things are calming down, and I've been getting ideas for posts. I am excited to begin posting more. Also, I am excited to see what you all have on your blogs! I haven't had a lot of time to explore the class blogs, but I am excited to get to know you all through that. I know that a lot of people in my class last year knew about me and my interests because of the things I posted on my blog, and I would like to get a glimpse into who you are through your blogs. Feel free to look through min…

DP Round 2

I'm typing this as I sit in the back of an empty classroom. DP is sitting across from me.

As a TA (teacher's assistant) for this class, I basically get relive the whole DP experience again, which is exciting for me. I love the way he approaches learning, and I'm excited to see how much the students in his class learn this year.


(Re)Learning Guitar with Technology

When I was about 13 years old, I picked up my first guitar. I named her Billy Jean. That was about 4 years ago now. When I picked up the guitar for the first time, YouTube was my teacher. I played guitar for my school's jazz band, and I was given music to learn on the first day I showed up for rehearsal. Obviously, I didn't know anything at that time, so I had to teach myself. Everything I knew about the guitar was self-taught, with the occasional help of YouTube tutorials.
There are good things and bad things that come from that. You can move at your own pace. You can learn songs that you like and you find cool. You can learn in a way that's easiest for you. That's what I loved about teaching myself how to play guitar. However, over time, I noticed that I was heavily focusing on one aspect of playing guitar. I learned how to play rhythm guitar like a fucking pro... but that's it. I could read tabs, but not well enough. I had trouble playing riffs. Things like that…

5'2 and Some Change... Revamped!

As you can probably tell by the looks of my blog, I changed a few things. Actually, I changed the whole layout.

I must give credit where credit is due. My fellow classmate Cece showed our class her blog yesterday and I really enjoyed the layout. I liked how organized and simple everything looked, so I used the same layout and theme she used. And I think my blog looks great.

You know what they say; new year, new blog... right? Except, I'm not making a new blog... and it's technically not a new year...

You get what I mean.

Sooooonnnnnggggg: Cool for the Summer by Demi Lovato

The Final Course UGH!

Here is my final essay for DP's class, a class I will miss very much. It's a bit lengthy, but even this doesn't fully cover everything I've learned in this course:

My Growth in This Course and My Ever-growing Curiosity      I am writing this essay with a heavy heart. You may be asking yourself why. “I mean, it’s just another English class”, my friends tell me. A curious girl with an intelligent mind, I’ve always longed to be in a class that would let me explore beyond the usual mathematical material, English grammar, and scientific discoveries. Teachers didn’t really seem to notice that though. For the past 14 years, I’ve been constrained by my teachers to only focus on the taught curriculum whilst pushing unnecessary thoughts and questions out of the way. The only good thing that came out of this is that I became very obedient. I didn’t speak without raising my hand. I didn’t give my opinion if it wasn’t asked for. I was polite and did what I was told, even if I thoug…

Current Mood

As you can tell, I felt very creative and inspired tonight. Hopefully, DP will like my essay. 
Sooooonnnnnggggg: I Hate Everything About You by Three Days Grace. I absolutely LOVE this song and this band.

Big Question Recap

Hey guys! Hopefully, you found my presentation to be a little bit insightful and interesting. In this post, I'm going to answer some questions some of you may have and update you on upcoming attractions.

As some of you may know I changed my question multiple times throughout the year. I am a big science dork and I couldn't seem to find a way to connect both music and science in one question, until a few days ago when I got my final big question. I picked a question relating to music and the brain because I am passionate about both topics. I used to want to be a brain surgeon and a psychologist once upon a time, fun fact. I did my presentation the way I did because I was inspired by TED Talks. For those of you that aren't familiar, it's basically a name given to presentations done by experts on a super grand stage in front of other experts about a specific topic. Particularly, I was inspired by Tim Urban's TED Talk about what goes on in the mind of a procrastinator.

My Big Question: What Are the Effects of Music On the Brain?

You know, I still remember the first day I held an instrument. I was sitting in a crowded library with about a million other kids and with ridiculously shaky and clammy hands, I assembled (or tried to assemble) my clarinet. I mirrored the actions of my band teacher, Ms. Belyea, and proceeded to soak a popsicle stick looking thing (known as a reed) and placed it with much precision on my mouthpiece. She then asked me to play a note using just the mouthpiece. It was the most unpleasant sound ever. Unfortunately, that’s all I had time to do because I had to return to class, however when I got home, I opened my clarinet book and proceeded to learn a few notes. I stared fervently at the fingering chart and my mind and fingers looked back at me and I’d sense them freaking out a little bit. It became a bit of a daily routine, but over the course of about a few weeks or so, I got the hang of it. Eventually, I had it down to a science. I was about 9 at the time, and who knew that experience w…

HELP! Questions for my Big Question

I want to ask a few questions relating to my big question so I can have a better presentation on Monday. I'd appreciate any answers y'all can give me :)

Here we go!

1. What songs make you happy?
2. What songs do you listen to when you're sad?
3. How long do you usually listen to music on a daily basis?

Muchas gracias :p

One of My Passions: Astronomy

Something not many people know about me is that I am a person of many passions. Most people know me because of my passion for music, but many people don't know that things like cosmetology, psychology, astronomy, mathematics, physics, and medicine are also things that really interest me and absolutely fascinate me. Right now, I wanna talk about me and my love for astronomy.
     Growing up, I’d look up at the stars and wonder “What is beyond the stars? Is there more than what meets the eye?” I’d doodle what I saw in the night sky on sheets of paper, and then I’d show those doodles to those around me; I explained my findings to my family, which included how many stars I saw that night and what the moon looked like. During the day, I’d look up at the glow-in-the-dark stars that my dad put on the ceiling for me, and though the stars didn’t glow in the day, I knew they’d glow at night. My curious side would come out at night, when I’d look up at the stars and ask myself a plethor…

We Eat AP Essays for Breakfast

CAUTION: The following essay was written by a tired 16-year-old who is sick as hell, yet hyper because she drank caffeine. Read at your own risk.

I stayed true to the times on the blog post. I took 5 minutes to pre-write my essay (Grade A trash, as I like to call it), and spent 25 minutes writing the essay. I didn't stop the time when I needed to look up words or whatever. The only time I stopped the time was to change the songs that were playing on Spotify while I was writing :)

NOW TIME TO PROOFREAD DIS. I have more homework to do, and I don't want to spend a total of 20 minutes typing the essay and proofreading it. I'll set the timer for 10 minutes, I'll type hella fast, and I'll use whatever time I have left to proofread. Okay? Okay. (<- Did y'all catch that The Fault in Our Stars reference there? Hehehe ;) )

     In the essay "We Eat Social Media for Breakfast" by DP, many literary devices are used to get the main message across. Th…

Ignite Talk Schtuff

My big question relates to music. My question is this; what does it mean to make music? What is music?

Does thinking count for the second bullet point? I thought about how I wanted to present my big idea to the class in a way that would be fun and a challenge for me. I thought about how to answer my question, and what I'd need to answer my big question.

I learned that this shit will not be easy. I have ideas and stuff, and a challenge will be getting all my ideas and combining them into one project.

I can make a connection between music and self-reliance. Every artist is self-reliant is their own way.

I'm going to gather and talk to my sources.

Writing for the Newspaper? That and Other Fun Schtuff

I'm moving up in the world!


I have to write an article for the newspaper (The Breeze and the SM Times) about a recent event I went to and participated in, so this should be fun. My gears are turning, and I'll write the article when I get home.


I have some ideas for my big question, which I will share on Friday during the Ignite Talk. I'll post the corresponding post sometime today :)


I got followed on Instagram by someone from a mariachi I admire very much. Let's just say I cried in the morning when I saw the notification.

Sooooonnnnnggggg: Lust for Life by Lana Del Rey and (my husband) The Weeknd

AP Essay (UGH!) #1

For centuries, prominent thinkers have pondered the relationship between ownership and the development of self (identity), ultimately asking the question, “What does it mean to own something?” Plato argues that owning objects is detrimental to a person’s character. Aristotle claims that ownership of tangible goods helps to develop moral character. Twentieth-century philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre proposes that ownership extends beyond objects to include intangible things as well. In Sartre’s view, becoming proficient in some skill and knowing something thoroughly means that we “own” it. Think about the differing views of ownership. Then write an essay in which you explain your position on the relationship between ownership and sense of self. Use appropriate evidence from your reading, experience, or observations to support your argument.

     Ownership and sense of self have an interesting relationship, to say the least. There are two ways one could look at these tw…

F451 Essay: UGH!

I picked the second prompt for this essay, btw.

If there's one thing I won't forget from this book, it's the paragraph in which Bradbury described the sound of the bomber jets flying over Montag's house and how quiet it made Montag's whisper seem. Throughout the book, Bradbury effectively uses syntax and figures of speech to show the differences between Montag's inner world and the world around him. We see the differences between the chaos that occurs in the outside world and Montag's calmer inner world.
     The best example from the book that shows the differences between Montag's inner world and outer work through syntax is the paragraph where Montag finds Mildred overdosed. At this point of the book, everyone was preparing to go into war; we know this because we get introduced to bomber jets in the beginning of the book. In this paragraph, Bradbury brilliantly uses juxtaposition; he describes the chaos of the outer world first and ends the paragraph…

Burning the 10PM Oil

You know what would be cool?

A book written in both first person and third person. Every other chapter could switch. The first person chapters could be written as journal entries, while the third person chapters could be... ya know... someone narrating the story. I'm so down to write something like this.

You know what's weird? When a violinist in a mariachi sings, he/she stops playing violin.... why? Can't you sing and play at the same time?

Sometimes, I read the journal topics and wonder how DP would respond to them. Am I the only one?

So many questions.... I need coffee.

Fahrenheit 451 Question Extravaganza

The title of this post is making me laugh.

ANYWAY, I'm going to (attempt to) answer more F451 comprehension questions. Let's see how well I perform.

Pages 133-147
1. What is the significance of the glass of milk, the apple, and the pear?
     In my opinion, I think that they Montag a sense of... home, if that makes any sense. He's so used to living in such a cold house that when he sees the food, it's almost comforting.
2. Montag thought he saw the Mechanical Hound and reached his breaking point. What did he see?
     Umm... a little help here?
3. After Montag's musing about the Sun and fire, why is it ironic that he sees a fire?  How is this fire different?
     It's ironic he see's a fire because fires are supposed to burn books, but the people around the fire... ARE books.

     The fire, like the food, is comforting. 
4. Who is Granger? Who are his associates? (Spend a few sentences explaining this.)
     Granger is an author. His associates, in my eyes,…

Music is My Sport

I'm a musician.

If people ask me what I am, I tell them I'm a musician. If people ask me what my passion is, I say music.

A lot of people that know me know this. They know me as this sick lead trumpet player, or this sick guitarist, or this sick clarinetist.... you name it. However, they don't really know why I invest so much time and effort into music. So, here's my relationship with music.

Growing up as a kid, I'd wake up to the sound of MTV. And occasionally, I'd hear my dad blast rock music in my grandma's house at 5 AM before going to work. We lived in a pretty crowded house; my grandma, great grandma, great grandpa, mom, and dad lived under one roof. Not gonna lie, it was a shitty house. But it was home to some of my most vivid and happy memories.

My mom would always tell me stories about how I'd sit up in my crib, dancing to Britney Spears. My dad was a big rock fan, so I'd listen to Sum 41, Blink-182... bands like that. All I did as a kid wa…

More Fahrenheit 451 Questions I Should Be Able to Answer

I'm tired, to be honest, so I'm going to answer these questions for part 2 of Fahrenheit 451 and crash out :))))))))))

Questions for Part 2:

1. In the scene where Mildred and Montag read books together, what are their separate reactions?
     Mildred is just scared, really. She doesn't want the firefighters to burn everything in their house, because that means no more parlor. Montag just wants Mildred to understand why he has the books.
2. What is the effect throughout sections I and II, of the bombers flying over?
     It creates a sense of fear. People are fearing war, similar to how Montag fears anyone finding out about the books he has.
3. Who is Professor Faber?
     Ye ol' dude Montag encounters at a park, I believe. They both read books illegally.
4. Montag’s reaction to the commercial on the subway is a turning point in his life. How does he react and why?
     He just gets really angry, because I think now he realizes how much attention society is paying to th…

Beauty Behind the Madness: Get to Know Me!

So, I realize that many people who read this blog don't know much about me... so I figured why not change that? I'm currently looking up questions online, so y'all can get a better sense of who I am.

Alright? Let's fucking do this.

Here's the link to the blog post containing the questions I'm about to answer. I didn't read over any of the questions, so this should be interesting...

1. What's your best friend's name?
This is so unfair because I have so many best friends. To name off a few, Cayla, Vincent, and my sister Fatima.

2. Who would you throw into the Bermuda Triangle?
Myself, just to see what it's like :p

3. Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed?
Open, because then I don't have to worry about spending energy opening them in the morning.

4. Do you take the shampoos and conditioner bottles from hotels?
No? I only use quality shit on my hair. *flips hair*

5. Have you ever stolen a street sign?
No, but that's on my bucket…

My San Francisco Trip


So, as some of you may know, I went to San Francisco a couple days ago. I was there for two days- Wednesday and Thursday. And I must say, it was pretty fucking lit.

Shameless plug, but I have pictures from the trip on my Instagram. Y'all should check it out.

I'll split the trip up into three paragraphs: the city itself, the colleges I visited (I went on an AVID trip), and my overall experience with my classmates.

Two words: holy shit. San Francisco is a LOT bigger than I thought it'd be. It's also a lot more beautiful. One thing I immediately noticed is that San Fran is just a melting pot of different cultures. It shows in just about every aspect of the city; it shows in the graffiti and murals (which I thought was stunning), the different stores, the food... everything. It's its own world. There's so much to see and do, and I think that going for only two days is not enough to experience everything San Francisco has to offer.

Issues with the School System

This blog post is based off a conversation I had with my best friend yesterday while I was at Stanford (more on that in another blog post).

The school system is wrong in more ways than one. However, we are so accustomed to this system that many students don't even notice it. We are all trying to climb this mountain of success, and we believe there is only one way to do it. We all need that perfect GPA and those perfect test scores. Those numbers and letters define us and how smart we are.

And there's the first flaw. Numbers and letters don't define us or our intelligence. Every teacher has his/her own way of grading stuff, and often times, students know how they do it. I'll use my math grade as an example. I currently have a C+. However, I know that I understand what is taught. I know that I can successfully tutor someone who is struggling with the class. The only reason that I have the grade I have is because group tests bring me down. But group tests don't measur…

Fahrenheit 451: Questions I Should Be Able to Answer

DP posted some comprehension type questions on the blog, which I am required to answer. I haven't looked at the questions yet, so let's see how I perform. Here are the questions:

1.The novel Fahrenheit 451 begins: “It was a pleasure to burn.” Why does Ray Bradbury start the novel in this way? Why might it be more pleasurable to burn books rather than read them?
2. In the opening scene, why are the books compared to birds?
3. Discuss the difference between Montag and Clarisse’s lives.
4. Montag’s television includes headphones called “seashells.”  The “wall to wall circuit” allows Mildred to enter the “play” and, therefore, the television programming. How does the technology within the novel compare to our current technology? In the first pages of the novel, does technology improve the quality of life for Montag and his wife, Mildred? Why or why not?
5. Why does the narrator introduce us to Montag at this time of his life, when he encounters Clarisse and confronts Mildred’s ove…