For You I’ll be an Athletic Girl

This poem is closely modeled after “The Genius” by Leonard Cohen:

For you
I will be an athletic girl
and compete
and wear a jersey
over my bruised body
and ripped skin
down the field

For you
I will be a depressed girl
and wear my hair long
covering my face
wherever I go
and the pain is hidden
behind that fake smile

For you
I will be a girly girl
and wear dresses
with sparkly flowers
that sprinkle stardust

For you
I will be a chatty girl
and rant uncontrollably
like Lorelai Gilmore
speaking my mind
and I’ll go on forever

For you
I will be a popular girl
and have
the highest marks
and the most
friends out of everyone

For you
I will be a tomboy girl
and lay in the mud
covering my bruised body
embracing the dirt
I’ve come to love

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From One Meat Eater to Another…

“You ask people why they have deer heads on the wall. They always say, Because it’s such a beautiful animal. There you go. I think my mother’s attractive, but I have photographs of her.” – Ellen Degeneres

Becoming a vegetarian or vegan is generally a voluntarily chosen diet rather than a gluten free or lactose free diet. People choose to do so based on a variety of different reasons varying from parental preferences to concern over the animal, to religious reasons to health issues.

The assumption that all vegetarians are tree-hugging hippies is extremely inaccurate. Hippies were a sub-culture that emerged from the mainstream culture of the 1950s-1970s. They followed in the footsteps of The Beats because of the Political Environment of the decade that inspired many teenagers to join the revolution. They were characterized by their long hair, unconventional clothing, use of drugs and want for peace. Many hippies are against all forms of violence including the cruelty towards animals which is why they became vegetarians and/or vegans.

To understand why someone would choose to become a vegetarian you must first learn the facts. Every year in the US more than 27 million animals are slaughtered to become a meal on your plate. Approximately 100,000 horses are slaughtered each year for export to Europe and Asia for human consumption. Cows have the ability to live for 20-15 years but any that are in a factory-farm are lucky if they live past 4. In a lifetime the average person consumes 2,600 animals. These animals are able to breathe, think and feel pain just like human beings and suffer immensely. This brings upon the moral/ethnical issue on if it’s right to eat meat at all.

Aside from animals being killed for food there are various health issues that are connected to eating meat. In America meat-linked diseases (heart disease, cancer, obesity and strokes) cause 60% of the deaths. The consumption of animals is not a necessity for survival. Protein can be found in all vegetables as well as meat alternatives like tofu. Many people think that that only way to get specific vitamins, for example Vitamin B12 is from eating red meat when there are supplements that can fill the void.

Looking back there’s reason to believe that we were never meant to become omnivores like humans are known as today. According to biologists and anthropologists humans were never meant to eat meat. The human body lacks both the physical characteristics (sharp claws and large canine teeth) of a carnivore and the instinct to kill and devour an animals raw carcass. For our ancestors meat was used as an alternative when plant foods weren’t available, it was never meant to become our main source.

People are so closed-minded when it comes to eating meat, maybe they’re really the picky eaters. Vegetarians and vegans have opened their eyes to a wide range of foods they never would’ve thought about eating unless they cut animals out of their diet.

Travel

“Oh, the Place’s You’ll Go!” – Dr. Seuss

You can look at pictures all you want but it comes to the point where you must experience it yourself. A photograph of the Grand Canyon is not the same as standing in the dirt looking out at what is said to be one of the seven natural wonders of the world. A new adventure reveals itself after every single step in an unfamiliar place. There’s an entire world out there that’s waiting to be explored.

A traveller lets go of everything, not wanting to miss out on a moment. Willing to indulge in a country’s culture, entertainment and anything else the trip may entail. From personal experience i’ve learned to try everything from eating Reindeer in Alaska to going on the biggest zip-line over a body of water in Labadee. I may not have liked it all but it was definitely worth it.

I don’t like staying in one place. It makes me claustrophobic. I much rather be back-packing across Europe than staying home whenever I have time off from school. I’ve dreamed of seeing the Leaning Tower of Pisa and going to Taiwan where my cousins are originally from. I want to feel the rush of adrenaline I felt when I went cliff jumping for the first time in Ottawa. I want to experience life to the fullest and always dare myself to be pushed beyond my limits.

Humans have to keep moving, they can’t stay in one place for too long. Kind of like how the Natives followed Buffalo as they moved since it was their main source of food. Some tribes engaged in agriculture but it was the protein that they needed for survival. People travel to different countries to try all types of cuisine. Trust me when I say that the Chinese food you get in China Town is nothing like authentic Chinese food. I’m talking about eating fish eyes and squidballs dipped in salt.

Food isn’t the only reason to explore new places. People travel all around the world to get the most out of life. Whether it’s white water rafting, skydiving, bungee jumping, canyon swinging or parasailing. Memories are created that will last forever. There’s a feeling inside your heart that will never disappear. There’s the images in your mind that can never be erased. Moments. They may be small and short but travelling is the road that must be taken in order to find yourself.