• Actually Ashley,  Blog

    A many-splendored thing

    The most powerful and meaningful sentence I, or anyone, could ever say is “I love you.” A declaration of love can break barriers, shatter defenses, and leave both sides completely vulnerable. But “I love you” is also the sentence that I say the most often on a daily basis. Is it possible for something so recurrent to maintain its significance and power? I don’t say it meaninglessly. But even if the feelings are there every time I tell someone I love them, the more they hear it and the more I say it, the less either of us take the time to think about the implications of such a hefty…

  • Actually Ashley,  Blog

    Life of the Party

    When I tell people that I am in college, they immediately make certain assumptions. Like that I know all the good clubs in town and that I must have a boyfriend, or at least a string of suitors chasing after me. In reality, neither of these could be farther from the truth. My university may have extensive guidelines outlined in its rule book, “The Navigator”, but it is also in the middle of downtown. So if you wanted to go against the code of conduct, it’s not hard to just go somewhere off campus where various shenanigans are ignored. But the fact that people do in fact go to these…

  • Actually Ashley,  Blog

    Good Old Days

    Nostalgia is a feeling relating to the past. It is looking back on past events and experiences with fondness and familiarity. Yes, there is no doubt that nostalgia would not exist without memories of the past. But I would argue that that warm happiness derived from those memories has more to do with the present and future than with the past. Nostalgia is created by more than just a memory. It comes from applying present knowledge and future hopes to the past. There is a comfort in seeing that what was once unknown has now been revealed. In seeing solutions that were once a mystery. Even in comparing blissful ignorance…

  • Actually Ashley,  Blog

    1000 Shows and Counting…

    I have a confession to make: I watch a lot of TV. It’s pretty excessive. I don’t do it when I should be doing other things. Instead, I just save it all up for a large chunk of time when I catch up on at least 10 different ongoing shows. At the same time, I always have a backup show that I am seasons behind on to eventually catch up on, and then add to the ever-growing list of continuous shows. It’s a very meticulous system. Having such a large collection of television programs that I regularly consume, you can imagine that I enjoy quite a variety of different genres.…

  • Actually Ashley,  Blog

    Food Doesn’t Grow on Trees

    Have you ever seen The Lorax? If you haven’t seen the movie, you’ve probably at least read the Dr. Seuss book on which it is based. It’s a cute story about the importance of nature to human life and the consequences of greed. The movie adaptation takes the concept a step further, adding a villain and several delightful musical numbers. Anyway, the evil character is an overly ambitious businessman who has somehow found a way to bottle and sell the only clean air in their town of Thneedville. He maliciously sings, “Everyone around here works for me. I sell them something they could get for free.” Basically the height of…

  • Actually Ashley,  Blog

    Why Be Jolly?

    We are a few weeks into the new year, and by now, most people are getting back into a routine after Christmas chaos. But I’m gonna take you back for a second to reflect on the flood of cheer from which we have just emerged. What’s the big deal about Christmas, anyway? Why is it the biggest holiday of the year (at least in America)? Businesses close, people take vacation time, and schools break for multiple weeks, just for this one day. I’m not the only one who has noticed the significance of all the hullabaloo. Movies, tv specials, and holiday-themed events are all obsessed with the question, “What is…