New Year’s Resolutions: 2013

So another new year is upon us. I have been alive for 26 of these things, maybe 27 but I refuse to do the math. Anyways, I never make these but seeing as I have some stuff I want to, ney, need to do before I get too old, I decided to try my hand at some this year. I am poor and pressed for time so they have to be pretty easy. So here we go:

1. Get Nick Lopez to Dropbox me Mumford and Sons Road to Red Rocks.

2. Go see a show at Red Rocks. (This has been a goal of mine sincde Live at Red Rocks came out my senior year of high school. If the show could be Incubus, that would be even better. In fact, I would count that as TWO goals accomplished.)

3. Go to a new country. Again, poor and pressed for time so Canada it is! Might as well mark it off the list while I live relatively close to Vancouver.

4. Get a part time job. Hopefully this one is accomplished in January. Momma needs money. Dave Ramsey would NOT be proud of the fact that I spend more money than I make. Jenna’s bank account is not happy about this either.

5. Learn to sew. This one can happen after I get a part time job. No money, no hobbies.

6. Don’t get fat. Yes, not lose weight, just don’t gain any. I like where I am now but I also really like cheese and chocolate so I must learn to balance this.

7. Camp at a national park.

Throw Your Hands Up! (Or just throw up).

And another birthday begins with me vomiting outside of a living space. After 26 years you think I would have learned, but I just haven’t. Oh well, lesson learned (but obviously not because I keep drinking multiple types of alcohol in one night, beer before liquor, etc. and throwing up in stranger’s yards, drive ways, bushes, and streets). So now I am 26, and while writing this I have decided that my New Year’s resolution is to not throw up in 2013. Aside from food poisoning or a stomach flu, I think I can stick to this one.

Since yesterday was my birthday, the man drove far away to the outskirts of Portland to get me a Cheesecake Factory feast! This was eaten by me:


and also this: In the words of Rihanna, Cake cake cake cake cake cake cake cake cake cake cake cake cake cake.


I wish it was my birthday again today so that I could eat this all over again. Mmmmmm. Unfortunately my tummy still hurts from the birthday booze that happened on SATURDAY. I am old and my body is letting me know it.

Also, I spent the last week waiting for the delivery man to come give me a basket of meat and cheese courtesy of Anne GosserHarris. This morning my doorbell rang. It was a man to fix my drain. He did not come bearing such delicious gifts. Sadsies.

Cognitive Dissonance: Break it Down

Grad school = jumping straight into concepts you either never talked about or forgot about after 3 years of absence from school. Dear professors (or do you call them Doctors?). Dear Doctor Professors, I worked in radio for 3 years, we don’t really have a lot of times that require us to use anything we learned from college except how to run a board and be on the air. I swear I felt like an idiot for 8 of the 10 weeks in the first term, and I am 97.3% sure the same thing will happen for the other 5 coming up.

So there are concepts and terms that people in Grad school throw around a lot and when they do, this is how I feel:


Just the confused part, not the Justin Bieber part. I don’t know how to feel like an adolescent Canadian super star. (But if I did, I would revel in it and soak it up like I was in a big bubbly claw foot bath tub).

So I have learned that I have to break concepts down to simpler ideas to understand them.

One of the ideas that somehow is brought up into ever class discussion (seriously, even outside of the class. Just talk like normal people!) is Cognitive Dissonance. So how does Jenna break down the big scary CD theory? Simple: Taylor Swift y’all!

It hurts me. It hurts me real bad. How are you a famous performer when you consistently sound like crap live? I should hate her. BUT I DON’T! I have to give her props because she can write catchy song. Pop songs are like butter to Swifty and she can churn them out. (Yep, you use similes in Grad school too, but metaphors ALOT more).

So there is my dissonance. My love of all things music tells me to dislike Taylor Swift because she just cannot sing, but studios take care of this for her albums. However, her songs are always stuck in my head and I LIKE the majority of them, as much as it pains me. WHY?!

So the lesson here, when in doubt break things down to something that makes sense to you. Such as my hate for T-Swift, but love for her freaking catchy pop songs.


It’s my Birthday, bring on the FREE STUFF!

So if I could offer one piece of advice, and yes I did this when I had a full time job before I was in Grad school, it would be to sign up for as many e-mail clubs as you can. Seriously. Just delete the few e-mails they send throughout the year and on your birthday you shall feast like a Queen! Being in grad school and making only enough to pay my rent, this free feasting makes me very happy indeed. So far, a free dinner at Pastini (some Oregon Italian joint), free dinner at Flat Top (make your own stir fry – if you don’t like Flat Top it is your own fault for being a sucky stir fry maker), free ice cream at Baskin Robbins, and a bunch of buy one get one coupons that make me a sad Panda. I want all or nothing. Still expecting some schtuff from Moe’s, Ben and Jerry’s, and Benihana.

Heed my advice minions, and sign up now! Sometimes they give you free stuff just for signing up.


Scatter Brained

So winter break is here, meaning that a whole month is about to happen where I have nothing to do but be awesome. (AKA I don’t have to read hundreds of pages of peer reviewed journal articles or write multiple 20 page papers). So far, I have managed to catch up on some sweet sweet shows, not wash my hair daily, and snuggle my dog. (In case you were wondering, yes beagles DO make excellent pillows!)

Myself, and my fellow cohort of 7 Communication majors have managed to survive the first term of Grad school, and I think it is safe to say there was no coasting involved. One of the first classes you are required to take is Quantitative Methods, and yes, it is as scary as it sounds. Math people. You go into Comm strictly to avoid anything with numbers, aside from TV stations and radio dials. So we all picked some topics, researched them, created some surveys, and gathered data. And the majority of us failed to support our hypothesis…wah wah. No published articles for these first year Grad students.

I did however, manage to establish a relationship between Social Media sites and self-esteem (I will pat myself on the back for you. You’re welcome and surely impressed, both by my brain and arm flexibility.) It was a positive relationship, so in other words don’t feel bad about spending all day Facebooking it up. You will totes feel better about yourself for doing it.

Anyways, when you establish a relationship between two variables, you get to create an awesome scatter plot to visually show how the two correlate (Correlation tests yo. Stats are easy when the computer does all the work!)

So here is what a scatter plot looks like when you have a strong correlation.


It’s pretty much a line. Got it? And here is what mine looked like…


There is a line in there somewhere. Maybe if you squint. Or maybe it is like 3D and if you get really close and cross your eyes you will find it. You can bet your ass I showed this beautiful piece of artwork off in class. I didn’t know what to say about it, so I just stated the obvious. “Here is my awesome scatter plot attempting to form a line.”

Ahhhhh finding support for a research hypothesis…