Sunday, October 27, 2013

Silent Connection

Snapchat, Facebook, Skype- the list goes on and on.  With the continual advances of social media, humans are finding it easier and easier to connect with one another.  Is any one of these methods superior?  Who can say.  But there is one method that is so overlooked, most would even not consider it a way to connect with one another.  At least not prior to having read this blog post.

Talking on the phone, chatting live over the Internet, and sending videos- what do these things all not have in common?  Silence.  Not many speak of the power of silence but it really exists, probably with a much stronger force than you realize.

My AP English teacher likes to start each class with silence.  The bell rings and all mouths are zipped.  Silence ensues and the class is silent and still save for wondering eyes.  Now our class is a family.  Now can class begin.

Yeah, at first that didn't make since to me either.  This is a class focusing on innovation and aren't ideas spread best through communication with one another?  I didn't understand the sense of community silence brings until today, at my high school basketball game.

A basketball game?  Decked-out cheering fans, red-faced shouting coaches, and the blare of expiring shot clocks refuse to allow silence to have a seat on the bleachers.  Except today.

She was fouled after attempting a lay-up; flattened to the ground and suffered a high top to the face.  After being helped up, she made her way to the line to knock down her two shots.  The referee recognized she was still a little shaky from the foul and approached her.  Towering over her, he lowered his voice and spoke.

The court was silent, preparing to fight for the rebounds.  The bench was silent, hoping their player was okay.  The bleachers ended all side conversations and tried to discern what was being said between player and referee.  The fouled player nodded her head and the entire gym was silent.  Not just quiet silent, but silent as in a pin dropping would have been considered relatively loud.

Despite the tension of a third quarter varsity basketball game, the silence was shared by parents, coaches, and players of both teams. 

"Hey, why is it so quiet?!"  Our assistant broke the communal silence and the gym broke into laughter.  Because of silence the gym was united and unlike like two weeks ago, no parents were thrown out by referees for behavioral misconduct.

Monday, October 21, 2013

In Trust We Trust

Trust.  A little word with an immensely big meaning.  Trust makes us feel safe, allows us to venture out of our comfort zones, and to form relationships.  But when trust is broken, the consequences are catastrophic.

Human to human trust is tricky.  What is a safe level of trust?  It's not the same as trusting a pair of training wheels to do their job.  When human to human trust is broken, the hurt runs deep where it often remains and lurks.  The deeper the trust, the harder the fall.

In the ideal world, trusting one another wouldn't be so frightening.  If you trusted someone with your heart, it wouldn't be returned in pieces.  In the ideal world, Iago's would stay in Shakespeare's literary fiction.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Not So Secret Identity

Blogging as a student, I realized that I should take extra precaution as to what information I allow readers to see.  How can I trust my personal information with who I do not know?  Of course I won't be posting up my home address or personal phone numbers, but where is the line to be drawn?  Or more interestingly, what if there was no line to be drawn?

In this technologically advanced age, spreading and sharing information takes only the click of a mouse.  But with the Internet, it is easy to be drowned in the flood of YouTube stars, Blogger geeks, and fanatic Pinners.  So how does one make a name for him or herself without displaying too much personal information?

Back to that line drawing business.

If the world didn't have to worry about Internet stalkers, user name hackers, and just plain creeps, it would eliminate the concern we have for our identities.  In what world would this be possible?  This would require erasing the difference between stranger and friend.

What if we all already knew each other without ever needing to have previously met?  Anyone could talk to anyone and it would be okay.  Imagine the resources we would be able to pull from, the connections that could be made, the innovation that would transpire.  Without the fear of unknown, a worldwide necessity would be allowed to blossom- trust.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

The Simplest Catalyst

In a world of fast consumption, kindness is often overlooked.  It has no price tag so some jump to the conclusion that it has little to no value.  Others like the idea of kindness, think it sounds great but do little to share it with their neighbors.  They are so self-absorbed, trying to make things be the best for themselves.  If they just realized that if they helped others, they would be helping themselves, I'm positive many would make some major lifestyle adjustments.  Need evidence?  Watch this.

One little act can make a huge difference.  You may not see just how far your kindness goes but for me, just one brighter smile is all the proof I need.  Stand out in the world.  Be kind.