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A Philosophy of Kindness

This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness. —Dalai Lama

Photo by Jennifer via Flickr

Photo by Jennifer via Flickr

The sleek blue-grayish Scion TC swiftly moved like a river rushing across the earth. And while doing so, my mind wandered off to how this situation came to be. I was driving my dad’s car back to Bakersfield when I realized how incredibly fortunate I was to borrow a car when I needed a ride, and how trusting my dad was of me to take his while my car was in the shop.

After my car, Susan took a tumble and crashed into a curb, I thought my days of easily getting around Southern California were over. Little did I know an outpouring of love and kindness would help me arrive to where I needed to go.  Read the rest of this page »

Visibility in the 2015 State of the Union Address

Last night’s State of the Union Address from President Obama has called for a lot of action form Congress. I’ve talked before about Obama attempting to make community college free for American students in the near future, and how this will ultimately benefit the nation as we aim to grow and move forward, but there is a list of other things Obama wants to get done before he leaves office which also includes expanding paid sick leave and reforming the tax code.

I have no more campaigns to run. My only agenda for the next two years is the same as the one I’ve had since the day I swore an oath on the steps of this Capitol – to do what I believe is best for America. If you share the broad vision I outlined tonight, join me in the work at hand. If you disagree with parts of it, I hope you’ll at least work with me where you do agree. And I commit to every Republican here tonight that I will not only seek out your ideas, I will seek to work with you to make this country stronger. -President Barack Obama

Read the rest of this page »

Why Tom Hanks And I Agree That Community College Should Be Free

Gone are the days when young adults didn’t need a high school diploma to get a great job. Many job requirements call for a diploma along with on the job training, a bachelor’s degree, some form of certification from a trade school, or an associate’s degree from their candidates. It is because of this that it has ultimately made it harder to get a job if you couldn’t afford some form of higher education.

A friend of mine has learned this the hard way. She wanted to make more than what she has made in the past at the numerous retail and fast food positions she has worked at, but as she looked at the job descriptions and requirements she realized that she wasn’t qualified. She confided in me that she felt stuck. The dilemma, however, isn’t that she knows she has to go to some form of school, but that she realizes that she can’t afford higher education and is afraid of falling into thousands of dollars worth of student loan debt. Read the rest of this page »

A Car Named Susan

Photo by Moyan Brenn via Flickr

Photo by Moyan Brenn via Flickr

The first time I found myself stranded on the side of the road was when Betsy, my first vehicle who happened to be a mini van, had broken down in a very dramatic billowing of smoke. I was on the right side of Interstate 5 going north and all I could see were barren mountains and speeding cars for miles around.

I called my mom, AAA, and then waited inside of the car for help. I slid over to the passenger side and tried to quiet the rising panic in my chest. However, about a minute after I got off the phone with AAA my door quickly opened in a way that made me nearly fall out. Read the rest of this page »

New Year’s Resolutions: 2015

FavconWhite lights were draped over the railings of our fourth-story balcony. We sat gathered together with music in the darkness that was partially illuminated by candlelight. We poured good wine, ate holiday treats, and chatted.

“So what are everyone’s New Year’s resolutions?” One of the girls asked.

The people sitting in various chairs on the balcony began muttering things about meeting new people and bettering themselves.

“So what is you’re New Year’s resolution, Jasmine?”

I thought about it for a moment. I remembered a year ago waking up on New Year’s Day from the same party, held a year before, with the same people. My New Year’s resolution then was to end up at a different party with new people, and as I looked around the outdoor patio table this New Year’s Eve at the people laughing and joking around, I couldn’t help but notice that there were some new faces in this new space. Read the rest of this page »

2014 in review

Five years. I have been blogging on the Internet for about five years now, and what started off as a random side project in 2009 turned into a passionate  hobby that has acted as a veery public outlet. My life has been forever changed by blogging, whether it was from job recruiters finding my blog and offering me writing positions, or uniting people from all over the world together in the comment section. I’ve met so many people while posting each week, and I have even inspired a few of my friends to create their own blogs too. Blogging has been a very wonderful experience, and I hope to continue to blog in the future.

Here is the 2014 annual report for this blog provided by WordPress.com stats.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 20,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 7 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Be Quiet, It’s Christmas

I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. -Elie Wiesel

“It has gotten to a point where I am genuinely annoyed at everyone else’s annoyance – be it social, political, or otherwise. It’s the week before Christmas, folks. Make some cocoa, sing a song, and get on with life.”

I saw the post on Facebook. An acquaintance had typed a message meant for peace, but rooted in disgust and ignorance. I couldn’t help but think, yes, it’s Christmas, but what are we going back to? Our “annoyance” was for police brutality, the injustice that has occurred in our “justice” system, and the racism and prejudice that has been embedded deeply into our society.

So, I read the comment on the Facebook status below. Read the rest of this page »

Stormageddon and Rainy Days

Winter Rain by Yen H Nguyen via Flickr

Winter Rain by Yen H Nguyen via Flickr

“They’re calling it ‘Stormageddon,’” she said while scrolling through her Twitter feed. “Oh dear, now people are thinking the drought is over.”

I laughed as she scrolled. I heard the rain over the phone where she was at in the Central Valley just as the rain began to fall over Southern California. It had just started raining in California, and there were already photos of cars crashed in ditches on the side of the road.

“Yeah, they’re calling it the storm of the decade in the Bay area,” I said. “They’re closing schools and everything.”

I could hear the rain picking up a bit outside my window. Cool water pooled in small puddles for the local kids to jump and run through. I watched as upset parents yelled from doorsteps at the children to get inside. Read the rest of this page »

“Z” is for Zones

ZI try to keep up with friends in between working and classes. However, I’ve noticed, as we have grown older, that we have been moving farther and farther apart, a few of these friends even leaving the country indefinitely.

“Oh, Fullerton?” A friend from Los Angeles would say. “That’s far.”

“Alright, I’ll come to you then.” And even when I used to live in LA County, the invisibly faint zone lines determined how often I would see someone.

Dating was another story. There have been times in the past that I would type an address in my Google Maps app and change my mind about a potential partner candidate. The zones determined area codes, friends, and lovers. Read the rest of this page »

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