For the Love of Language

 

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My recent research in college education has led me, as it has many times, to my one of my biggest passions: Language. Throughout my K-12 years I bounced around with what I wanted to study due to the fact that I have many interests. East Asian studies, art, veterinary medicine, animal behaviorism, graphic design, and English have made up the main bunch.

Even so, I always seem to make a loop and end up at the same conclusion. I love language; particularly English.

Language is what sets us apart. It is a fundamental aspect of our lives. We speak, write, and read language. It is what allows us to express ourselves in the most profound ways. It is interesting how many people might say, “Well, yeah,” as if that’s just a fact of life and there is nothing fascinating or extraordinary about language. Yet when you give it thought, imagine what language means to us.

One facet of language presents to us an escape from our lives by letting us delving into created worlds. That is reading.

My relationship with reading began well enough. I was fascinated by stories, but as a child it was visually appealing. Who didn’t love those picture storybooks?

Late elementary into middle school introduced an entirely new type of reading. No more pictures? I have to use my imagination? As a kid that grew up on Disney movies and vibrant picture storybooks, this was not how I wanted it to go. So, I decided that reading and I didn’t suit each other. Silly me.

It wasn’t until late middle school when I was roaming idly around the library that the spine of a book caught my eye. It depicted a horse, and I’ve always loved horses. As I looked at it, I read the title, “Wild Magic”. Horses, wild, and magic? What was this enticing sorcery? I checked out the book that day and was hooked.

Tamora Pierce’s Wild Magic kindled my love for reading. This was the kind of reading that provided that wonderful escape from reality; the type that grips your mind and heart.

Mark Edmundson (The Ideal English Major) described it so well:

“There are people who read to anesthetize themselves—they read to induce a vivid, continuous, and risk-free daydream. They read for the same reason that people grab a glass of chardonnay—to put a light buzz on. The English major reads because, as rich as the one life he has may be, one life is not enough. He reads not to see the world through the eyes of other people but effectively to become other people.”

“Real reading is reincarnation. There is no other way to put it. It is being born again into a higher form of consciousness than we ourselves possess.”

It was through these kinds of experiences that I developed a love for language and so a love for writing. After all, the three facets of language are all interlinked.

It’s why I am writing to all of you right now, and why I plan to pursue a degree in English.

I completely geek out over language!

It’s a dream of mine to have a career where I can indulge in my passion for language (reading, writing, speaking), and to reach others through my work. I’d like to publish at least one book if not more, and I will forever to encourage others to love language.

Here are some of my favorite books/series that I recommend:

The Sevenwaters TrilogyJuliet Marillier

Heart’s BloodJuliet Marillier

The Maze Runner trilogyJames Dashner

The Immortals quartetTamora Pierce

Dragonriders of PernAnne McCaffrey

 

Britney

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Knights of Sidonia Ep. 1-5 – First Impression

I came across the trailer for a new anime, Knights of Sidonia, that was being shown exclusively on Netflix. Here is that trailer:

 

And here is the official synopsis:

“The story follows the struggle of human survival amongst the monstrous shapeshifting aliens “Gauna” who all but destroyed the solar system a millennia ago and are bent on eliminating humans from existence.

Nagate Tanikaze, a low-born youth in a society of genetically engineered humans – now refugees that escaped the destruction of Earth one thousand years earlier, occupying the massive ship Sidonia. Nagate grew up living in the bottom layers of Sidonia away from civilization and raised by his now deceased grandfather. When Nagate’s talent as a pilot is revealed he becomes one of Sidonia’s elite defenders against the Guana.

 

From the trailer itself, I found myself pretty open minded. Mecha space-travel sci-fi type anime is sort of a 50-50 for me personally. I’ve had some of my favorites crop up out of this genre and have also been sorely disappointed.

Now I didn’t just watch the first episode to give y’all my opinion. I watched episodes 1-5, and I will admit that I didn’t do that entirely out of discipline. It got me!

Episode one was a little slow for my tastes, but after that you get introduced to the type of environment that the humans live in, how they survive, their societal structure, and many other things. Some of it is run of the mill, but then some of it is new and quite interesting. The depth of the characters grow as you move through the episodes. You learn as you go with this story, and that’s the way I like it. I don’t want the whole ton of information to be dropped on my head in the first or even second episode!

You’ll also find that in terms of storyline, this anime is not wishy-washy. I’d say it’s somewhere in between the tragic disturbance that is Attack on Titan and the sweet youthful interactions and typical cold shoulders you’d find in say.. Gundam Seed.

The animation is on it’s own playing field. It’s not ordinary anime drawing style. Instead, it’s more digitally fluid in terms of movement. This made me sort of have to pay very close attention to facial expression as they weren’t as blatantly obvious as in other anime. It also makes it seem as if the character’s movement is a little sluggish. This did bug me at first, but I didn’t really notice it as I continued to watch the episodes. Perhaps I got used to it?

Yes, we’ll go with that. Why? Because after you get used to the fluidity of the animation, you realize how beautiful it is and how suitable it is for scenes of space combat!

Let’s just say that I am impressed by this anime thus far. Netflix has 12 episodes total to watch, and I’m really hoping that isn’t the total count. I’d like to see at least 25 episodes. The storyline is certainly worth that and more.

Needless to say, I’ll be watching the rest of Knights of Sidonia. Afterward, I’ll do a follow-up post and let everyone know what I thought.

So far, so good!

Britney

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M.I.A. Apologies & More

Ok, so I am posting this to apologize and apologize again for my inactivity and the overall inactivity of our blog. Life has a tendency to grab hold of you and not allow for the other things that you do in you spare time. Blogging was one of those things.

On a more revealing note, Kelly and I sort of jumped into the deep end when we first created the blog and we drowned in our own exuberance. We put too much on our shoulders, and even with two of us we couldn’t meet the goals we set for ourselves. That pretty much put the flame out for us. It turned blogging into a chore and we never really intended it to be that way.

But.. We’re back!

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We’re excited to get back into the blogging groove, and we’ve set reasonable expectations for ourselves and each other so look forward to seeing a steady flow of posts from now on.

With that being said,

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Kelly and I would like to formally welcome Whitney to Geeky ‘n Girly. We recently invited her to write with us, and we feel like she has her own unique angle on the world of being feminine and geeky. So look forward to an introductory post from her in the near future as well as her own section on our About page.

 

~ Britney