Wednesday, February 23, 2005

A Field Study: Teenagers

Tonight should be really interesting (read: Hey! I actually have a subject! Go me!). I'm going to type up a field study of teenagers, as I saw them tonight at the youth program thingy. Being homeschooled, I don't know very much about my peers. I live a rather sheltered life compared to some, and speak a different language (read: better vocabulary than most teens), and live in a different culture.

The first thing I did was ride a large capacity vehicle, along with my objects of study. Most of these teens were male, wearing baggy clothes and baseball caps. There were a few females- the type that seemed more concerned with makeup and/or athletic events than with living a productive life. Unlike the males, in whose pants you could store more than one person (heaven forbid), the females were wearing clothes that looked rather tight, and must've been cold, since it was snowing at the time.

I arrived at large, open area, known as a 'gym' to most who saw these structures on a daily basis. There were packs of teenagers here, and the ones riding on the bus with me immediately tried to locate their friends. Most of the males were either swaggering around with females with them (they seem to pair off quite early). There were two very large packs, both of which were playing a game with a spherical object and two hoops. (They call this "Basketball".) I presumed that this was a game too out of my knowledge to play, and didn't feel any compuction to join in. Instead, I watched both packs from the sidelines.

One of the packs was mostly males, but a few females were playing along halfheartedly as the boys scored basket after basket. (Watching them come your way in one large stampede is something I wouldn't wish on anyone.) In the other end of the gym, a smaller group, this one mostly made up of females, was playing basketball as well, although they often paused to yell at one another in play or exasperation, or so I think. Many minor groups were strewn around the place. Most of those were made up of girls with a couple of boys, or of a few boys and a couple of girls. You could tell which males were the dominants, as they had the baggiest jeans and a female on the arm. I think that these were the so-called "popular kids". A few males were sitting on top of the bleachers, either listening to music players or talking amongst themselves. I think that these were the less dominant males, as they didn't make any move to join in the games or socialize with the females. There were few female stragglers.

A few minutes of watching on the sidelines lead a one of the lesser males to sit next to me, asking "What's up?" and getting a bit too close for my liking. For this, I simply told him about my older brothers, who I knew would object strongly to his getting too close to their little sister. The male backed off and went to join one of the games.

A couple of minutes later, the adult leaders came in. It was obvious that these were the most dominant of the entire pack, as when the bald one stepped up they all obediantly jogged over to listen to his instructions. His instructions turned out to be his rules of playing dodgeball.

It was then I began to understand the ruthlessness of teens when it comes to dodgeball. They slam into others, they smack each other with hard objects, and they attempt to generally cause pain, or at least embarassment. The game lasted for at least fifteen minutes. When all of the teens that played were a little tired and sweaty, the bald leader (at least, he seemed to be the leader, since he was the one telling people what to do) spoke to the pack, giving advice for life. It was obvious that most of the teenagers seemed to respect the bald one, since he came down to their level and spoke in a language they understood (you see, teenagers are quite simple when it comes to communication. At least to me).

After this time of speaking, the bald leader said that the teens were free do go eat food, which was graciously given to all of us by other adults. The waiting was now on to see who could reach the shuttle bus first, thus getting a seat. I was one of the lucky ones to get on the first bus. It was a short ride, but I think that all of the yelling caused by the teenagers' confusion will result in a more ferocious headache.

Conclusions? Teenagers might seem simple on the surface, but underneath is a complex and very confusing society. I think that this should grant another look, perhaps in different surroundings, or in smaller or larger groups. (Even though going with a larger group might just produce more of the same.)

Current Mood: Geeky

Random Useless Fact of the Day: Even though it's snowing, I get no snow day. If there's a foot or two of snow outside, I get no snow day. Sigh.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Sorry, We're Closed.

Heh, I've been a bad blogger. No updates for a week. Nothing really has actually been happening, so I thought, "Why bother? My life is boring, why would people want to read about that?"

So yeah. Have to be at church at 5:30 tomorrow evening for choir practice... Better take some aspirin because I know I'm going to have a headache. Why shouldn't I? I've had a headaches running rampant for the past few days... But that's why God made Excedrin.

I did laundry and the dishes voluntarily. I must've had a useful streak. Now that doesn't happen too often. (You're not allowed to answer that one, Phil.)

Current Mood: Productive, maybe? Nah.

Random Useless Fact of the Day: I think my mother is becoming more and more geekified. She was looking at iPod Shuffles and is apparently interested... (That's right, come over to the Dark Side, Mom.)

And By The Way: I changed the title of this blog. I just felt like it...

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Kids? Do I Have to?!

If there's one thing in this world that can annoy me, it's little kids. I mean, sure, they're not going to be as disciplined or quiet as the average teenager. But they just annoy me. I'm not sure why, so don't ask. Yeah, there are a few kids that I actually like (my cousins, and about five others from church). But the rest? No. Just no.

Take tonight, for example. Mercifully, I had Pixel the pug to do her tricks, et cetera, but the little girl I was watching had no idea whatsoever of what to do around dogs. She wanted to play really rough with Pixel, fiddle around with her tail (which is asking for Pixel give a person one of her 'leggomytail!' bites), and then proceeded to scream and whine when Pixel got riled up. (As the wise prophet would exclaim when a person riles up a dog and said dog goes nuts... "Well, duh!") Then this girl decides to try to chase Beans, my Boston terrier, around the house when Beans really, really doesn't want to be messed with. So yeah. When someone messes around with my dogs (especially eight-year-old Beans who hates strangers), I get somewhat ticked.

I'm just not sure why I get so irate around little kids. They're cute, right? The pride and joy of their parents' lives, right? Maybe I spend too much time with animals (you try to cut down on it and..well... I'll take shelter in the Humane Society shed) and that inhibits various relationships with various kids, but I doubt that's it. Maybe I'm just not cut out to be a babysitter.

Current Mood: Tired

Random Useless Fact of the Day: Found a cool website... These guys crack open an iPod mini and show all the little different parts. Yeah, I'm a dork.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Little iPod? Ooh!

Ever since I first saw my brother's first iPod (the one that's now mine), I have been fascinated with all sorts of MP3 players. Mostly, the iPod itself. A couple of days ago I found that Chris's wife, Christine, has ordered an iPod Shuffle. Yeah, the one that's tinier than a pack of gum. I think it's because she needed, like, a USB storage device or something... I think. But then, I don't know what the heck I'm talking about when it comes to computers so I'm just going to shut up about the really technical stuff.

So yeah. Now there's three of us: Chris, myself, and Christine. We're rapidly becoming the Aliance of White Earbuds. Or something like that. With me it's headphones more often because earbuds kind of irritate the cartilage in my ears if I wear 'em too long. But I like them well enough.

Current Mood: Slightly headache-y

Random Useless Fact of the Day: Mom got a new watch. Took long enough for her old one to conk out...

Friday, February 11, 2005


My life? Is boring. Ah, well. Guess it'll get interesting sooner or later...

Wednesday was sort of an interesting day. One of the staff members at the Humane Society quit, and the others really needed help. So Mom and I marched right up there at 8:30 in the morning and cleaned things. The only real issue was that at 10:30, there would be camera crews. Why? Because this one organization knitted a bunch of dog beds and those (very nice!) folks donated them to us. And of course, it had to be done on television. So the camera dudes came as Mom was sticking the last blanket in the last dog cage while the camera was running. She was backing out, and, well, I'll say no more. She'd probably kill me, and I'm not allowed to die until at least the end of Bible Bowl Nationals...

In other news, I think we've found a good way to make some money for the Bible Bowl team. There's this dog agility thing around the county, and they need to staff up the events. Good news? For one day of really simple tasks (setting up jumps, carrying leashes, etc.) the team gets paid $150. If we can keep that up for a few days, that'd really cut hotel costs... So yeah, I'm excited about that.

Current Mood: Yawning

Random Useless Fact of the Day: The only really bad thing about drawing with charcoal is that it gets all over your hands. It's worse than oil pastels... And no, I'm not talking about the kind of charcoal one uses to light one's grill.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005


Yes, the question mark is supposed to be there. I didn't watch a whole lot of the Super Bowl on Sunday. I did see the halftime show, though. Plus a few commercials, but those weren't all that funny aside from the one Cadillac commercial. (You know... the "Don't market convertibles in the middle of winter in St. Louis or anywhere else but Jamaica" one...) Sir Paul McCartney (did I spell that right?) was pretty good. Nifty stage and lighting work...

As for the actual football game, I didn't really care. I'm not that much of a football person in the first place, unless the Rams pull off some decent plays and win an actual game. Otherwise, I just don't care. So why should I get all hyped up because of the Pats and Eagles crashing into each other in one of the coldest months of the year, just to have to stop every thirty seconds? That's one thing I don't get. Why does the actual playing time of a football game total about five minutes? Tch. Boring. Give me baseball or a good horse race any day.

Current Mood: Blank

Random Useless Fact of the Day: Dr. Death-vet struck again this morning... Friends of ours had to put their dog to sleep because she was getting more aggressive than was advisable... I swear, the dude needs, and I quote my brother Phil on this one, "a black cloak and a scythe."

Friday, February 04, 2005

'Twas the Day Before Bible Bowl...

And after this post I'm probably going to go study with my friend Luke daGospel. This month it's chapters 13-17, and they're not very long so this might be an interesting competition. Dang. My team always gets stuck in the upper division with the high schoolers so we always get pretty well spanked during the actual rounds. If I had to be there at all (which I do...) then I'd just take the Top Brain Test and leave. I'm good on that test, regardless of the fact that it's 150 questions. Erk. Not that fun. Tomorrow I think my team's going 16 rounds, so we'll be pretty well bushed, drat. Need to remember to pack a few asperin pills... Harvester is stuck with devotions (a five-minute thingy and a prayer) this month, so I think Tyler (you can find his blog at is going to do that. I wonder if he's sticking around for the games. I'm not sure that he will; Bible Bowl is a great game to play but if you don't know what's going on, then it's the most boring sport in the world to be watching. I'm not sure Tyler's ever even seen a match in his life... Education time, hee hee.

Well, at least my team should be getting Dairy Queen as usual. It's a reward for doing however well we did. DQ is also a tool to salvage our wounded dignity. Need to remind Dad to make coffee in the morning... Chosen starts on Sunday, w00t.

Current Mood: A little stressed

Random Useless Fact of the Day: Steven Curtis Chapman rocks.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

And the Rodent Says...

Six more weeks of winter... Not that I really care. We'd have six more weeks of winter anyway, whether or not the groundhog (this "Punxatawney Phil", which I know that I didn't spell right) saw his shadow. As a matter of fact, I'm not sure that any groundhog would've seen any shadow with all the clouds that were hanging around today. But anyways...

I'm happy because I scraped by in the first part of my big fat history test... Go me. My cousin's over here with her weekly visit to the Academy for Exceptional Young Women. If there's anyone out there wondering what the heck that would be, it's the name that my mom made up for our own little school. (We're all homeschooled young ladies, therefore we are exceptional young women. Yeah.) I think that Mom was trying to be humorous, but it eventually morphed into a serious name for ourselves. My sister and I were the first two students, and then a couple of my friends came here for tutoring. Then my cousin joined up, and she comes every Wednesday. (I think that with all the tales of horror about the public school system that my mother just might start an actual school. That'd be freaky but okay, I guess. I haven't had full-time classmates since kindergarten.)

It snowed today, but nothing stuck. So now now my yard is even more squishy. Ick. Belive me, that's a nasty sensation.

Current Mood: Amused

Random Useless Fact of the Day: My brother Phil just ordered a "Pearls Before Swine" collection. Best...comic...ever. I don't care what you say. If you hate it, then you must be more of a Ziggy fan.