Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Christmas Lists

Yes, I still make them. But, in my defense, my family requests them so they know what to get me since I live here in Bozeman while they are all in Yakima, WA. My boyfriend's mom asked me if I had made one yet the other day and I went into a sort of panic mode. (This is what went through my mind) *Holy crap I hadn't even thought of anything yet - I mean my birthday is before Christmas! Plus, if shes asking for one then that means everyone else in my family is probably thinking about it too.*

So, I started contemplating things that I need (or just want) for Christmas. I still felt a sense of panic - asking for certain presents makes me feel guilty, I mean who likes to ask for something super expensive? 1) It makes you look like you only like expensive things 2) maybe they don't have the money for it this year and they might feel guilty they can't get it for you. My Christmas list feels like a guilt trap - I either feel guilty for asking or I'm afraid that my family will feel guilty if they don't purchase the things on my list. What ever happened to the days when I was little and wrote EVERYTHING down? I'm pretty sure I asked for the entire JC Penny catalog once. When you're a kid, you can ask for anything you want and everyone just thinks you're being cute. Plus, as a kid you're not disappointed if you don't get everything on the list so you're family doesn't feel bad for not buying it. Why can't life still be this simple?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


I always find it funny/interesting/annoying that Christmas advertising and products come out either right before or immediately after Halloween. I mean, I went to the store to pick up some last minute Halloween decorations and there were almost as many Christmas decorations as Halloween ones.

I get, Christmas is awesome. It's my favorite holiday too. But, there is this thing called Thanksgiving that comes first, not to mention that Christmas actually occurs towards the end of December, not the end of October. Don't get me wrong, I love Christmas music, decorations, treats, and all the joy that comes with spending time with my family too. But, if you start showing ads and playing music two months before Christmas even gets here, I'm going to get super annoyed and find Christmas not so enjoyable anymore. Coming from a person who's worked in retail and had to listen to the "Christmas Music" cd that corporate sends in early November, the holiday season isn't called "the most wonderful time of the year" by anyone who listens that repeat 4 times in one shift.

So, why do stores stock up on all-things Christmas in October? Why are holiday ads aired the day after Halloween? When did the corporate minds begin to push Christmas on consumers? All I can think of is that this whole trend was created by the people who buy Christmas presents in August, have 12 light-up Christmas tree sweaters, and smell like sugar cookies.

On a brighter note, here is my favorite Christmas ad I've seen so far - it's got a little bit of the holiday spirit to it, but not so much that you feel like your being pushed to buy presents right this minute:

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Perceived Beauty

A couple of weeks ago, there was a wiki presentation about how the ideal 'beauty' has become distorted - women now have to be extremely skinny for them to feel beautiful in many cases. Take ballerinas or models for instance; they are extremely skinny and unhealthy, yet they are constantly told how great they look.

During the first viewing of "Bend it Like Beckham", I overheard a couple of classmates talking about how 'buff' and 'inshape' Keira Knightley's character is. I was shocked and a little bothered by their comments. As someone who is extremely interested in fitness and active, healthy lifestyles, I think that Keira's character doesn't look like a real soccer player, and she is most definatley not buff or in good shape. I think she looks like a starving model. I think the fact that several of my classmates identified her as an ideal body type is disturbing and it goes to show just how twisted our idea of ideal beauty is today.

When I think of a female who is 'buff' and in shape, I think of actual fitness models or athletes. Those that are healthy and have muscle tone and definition. Not only do these girls exercise to look great, but they are doing so in a healthy way that keeps their weight down and also decreases the chances of any serious illnesses caused by over-eating or having a sedentary lifestyle. I think that the ideal body should reflect these qualities and not look like Keira in the above picture.