United?

Well, again, I’ve been drinking. I’m frustrated. I am hurt. My country has become so divisive that we no longer see what makes us the same. The complexities are so far spanning that I can’t name them all here without making it a career in sociology. That won’t stop me from expressing the sadness I feel.
I love every man, woman, and child in my country at my core. It pains me that we have resulted to violence, and I will say as I have before, violence only begets more violence.

The media has portrayed Baltimore as another city full of terrible black Americans tearing apart their own communities. The same media fails to report on the many people on that same ground opposed to it. I hate this because the media is effectively undermines the concerns of Americans. The media is effectively down-playing the tragedies of others experience.

I’m also saddened because this same news portrays all law enforcement as terrible human beings and that isn’t the case either.

I am pained as an American watching my country turn to oil and burn at the instant there is friction. What hurts more is not knowing a legitimate solution that doesn’t ignore the complexities of the society we live in.

Most importantly, I am pained by the reality that the country I was raised in that was once united is so easily divided.

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Society Like the Tide

I want to talk about virtue. Not as we know the word now, but as it was known when Aristotle theorized on it. To find the middle path. To resist extremes.

I have attempted to live my life by these means. If we look at life and the world around us we find that everything is in search of equilibrium. The definition I found for equilibrium via google states, “a state in which opposing forces or influences are balanced.” Why is it that everything in nature is in search of this yet we as people resist it?

Our society is more foundationally eager to jump to extremes. The further we become polarized the more violent the reaction becomes. The closer we bring ourselves toward each other the more tranquil we are.

I am not telling you to change your belief system. I’m not telling you to give up who you are. I am suggesting that we merely accept each other and in doing so allow each other to be. Existing just as nature does, like the ebb and flow of the tide.

Who is in Charge?

its 9:17 pm and a revelation just hit me as I enter my 4th round of Maker’s Mark. Reality is a shitty situation we have all tried to avoid at one point or another. The worst part of it all is even in the moments of sobriety we run from it. Universities have become controlled by their student population. They fear the loss of revenue if they were to go against the majority.

What happened to being challenged? What happened to being uncomfortable? My ideals are challenged daily in the real world and the only reason I don’t stuff my head in the sand is because of the same institution that is becoming more and more afraid of the exact thing that is developing my mind.

If we fear offending our students did we really prepare them for the world outside academia? I work in an ER and I see things frequently that make you re-evaluate just exactly what ethics are and where your values stand. You see the best and worst in people in the moments leading up to their possible death.

It frustrates that a group that is supposed to be built on the idea of developing intelligent adults is giving into them as if they are spoiled brats.

WE ARE NOT HERE TO TEACH YOU. YOU ARE HERE TO TEACH US. No matter how uncomfortable or inconvenient it may be for the both of us.

I’m off my soap box for the night. I just wish people would remember that anything worth having didn’t come without dealing with a little bit of pain.

Backyard Babies

Anyone who has ever spent more than ten minutes talking to me knows I love Great Danes. I have become frustrated with future puppy owners. Many people just don’t understand what they are getting themselves into when purchasing a puppy. This is why a reputable breeder is always where you need to start. The problem is most people don’t even know that.

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I am a part of many Great Dane Facebook groups and it is a common occurrence to see someone post a comment stating, “I am looking for a (insert coat) Great Dane if anyone is selling please send a message with pictures and prices.” You have successfully locked yourself into the stupid zone. This from my perspective is just pure laziness. The “I want what I want and I want it now” mentality. So easily, people ignore the repercussions of a purchase from a backyard breeder spanning from behavior to medical issues. Not to mention that backyard breeders do not follow a formal code of ethics or help widen the gene pool so as to avoid health issues of the breed in the future. It is purely driven by money.

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What frustrates me even more is when I bring to their attention the proper route to start their adventure into owning a pure bred dog they toss it aside and go right back to the lazy mentality. This makes me feel for their future pup. Why? Because their lack of patience and willingness to do research translates into their dedication, patience, and preparation for owning the breed. If one is not properly prepared to own a giant breed dog such as the Great Dane they are in a load of trouble when it grows up. Then we get to see them turned over to rescues because, “They can’t handle it anymore.”

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I urge any, and everyone to take the time to do proper research into the breed, the breeder, and your lifestyle. If we can get people on board with a responsible way of obtaining man’s best friend we can avoid overburdening rescues and traumatizing puppies for no good reason. Puppies are living breathing emotional animals. They are not presents or things to appease yourself like the dirt bike you bought, found out it was hard to ride, and now collects dust in your garage.

The following link has absolutely amazing guidelines for how to find a reputable breeder. Once you find a good breeder they will walk you through everything you need to know and set you up for the best possible chance of success. With hard work and sacrifice comes immense rewards.

Click this link to read the Dos and Don’ts for finding a good breeder.

Dwelling on Failure and Shifting Blame

I had a recent issue with people in my class dwelling on past mistakes. The issue with such actions is that when you do so you are not moving forward and therefore not creating anything of value for your life.

When there are faults from another unrelated to you it doesn’t change the fact that the challenge is still before you. My class decided to sarcastically berate my professor for not properly preparing us for the exam. While not as extreme I do agree with the class’ consensus. My issue is the behavior is unproductive.

What I want to express to the class is really starting to bubble over. I need to remind myself that as a 25-year-old in a room full of 17, 18, and 19-year-olds that my perspective is obviously much different. I want them to understand that they are not only wasting my time with complaints and finger pointing, but their own. Firstly, she has been a professor, most likely, longer than they have been alive, which negates their ability to have a weighty sway in changing her ways. Secondly, choosing not to take ANY responsibility for their failure is only a detriment to themselves, not the professor. Thirdly, the fact that these actions are futile only prove that you must adapt and overcome if you expect to be successful.

The sad reality is that half the class wishes to be physicians or some high level of medicine. This is where I see the starting point of those who are not truly cut out to be at such an elite academic level.

I understand I am coming from quite a high horse so let me level the playing field. I failed the exam myself and only a few passed the exam. I did  not properly study and the excuses for me are plenty. This doesn’t undermine the fact that complaining and using excuses isn’t getting me anywhere. Identifying priorities is the only way to achieve success. If we want to have or cake and eat it to we must position ourselves to do so. For me, that may require cutting back on work hours, less recreational time, more time studying in biology and less in chemistry. All of these things will have consequences. The sacrifices I make will have to be determined by what I am willing to do. I enrolled in the course. I want to pass the class. So the question becomes, how bad do I want it?