I am such a horrible blogger, Benedict Cumberbatch kinda terrifies me, and other revelations since my last post
OK I AM SO SORRY FOR NOT BLOGGING FOR ALMOST 100 DAYS!!!! But things have been chaotic because….
- MY SHERLOCK HOLMES PAPER GOT ACCEPTED INTO A CONFERENCE!!!!
- Second semester. End of story.
- I may or may not have forgotten my password to this account. Whoops. Not one of my shining moments…
But let’s talk about probably the coolest thing that has happened in my short life: I’m officially presenting at my first academic conference! My paper on Sherlock Holmes fan works (which I have been documenting my progress on since I started classes last semester) was one of the first papers accepted (or at least I think it was since I’m basing everything off of confirmation numbers). I am so pumped for this experience! But, with that being said, my school denied my request for funding and everything for the trip (my flight, hotel, etc.) is coming out of pocket. I’ve started a GoFundMe, so if you could share the link or possibly donate a couple of dollars towards my campaign, that would be lovely. Thank you ❤
So kinda going off of that…
My family came down to visit me at school for the Easter weekend (which was wonderful), and my brother asked me what I would do if Benedict Cumberbatch came to my presentation and wanted to talk to me about it afterwards. I told him that I would be terrified.
“Psh. Yeah right. Terrified of meeting one of your favorite actors who you not only find attractive, but a fascinating person who you would kill for an opportunity to sit down and have a conversation with? I don’t believe it.”
But here’s the thing: I’m not terrified of meeting him.
I’m terrified of letting him down. Or anyone, for that matter.
I have put so much work into this paper so far (and after the semester is over, I’m going to be putting a lot more in as well), that I have a lot of people rooting for me. I’m fortunate for this support, but I don’t want to let them down. Failure has always been one of my biggest fears, and I don’t want it to let it get the best of me. Out of anyone I could be presenting this to, Benedict (as well as anyone involved with the show, for that matter) knows the source material as well as I do. For me, that’s intimidating because he knows a lot of what I’m basing my argument off of. I don’t want this to fall short of expectations.
I shouldn’t really be fretting about this, but I’ve tried to get other cast/production crew members to retweet my GoFundMe link so I can hopefully raise the money to go on the trip. If they’ve seen the link, they know when and where the presentation is and what I’m arguing. Which means that there is that slim chance that they’ll be there.
But that’s not going to happen, right?
I don’t drink. The only alcohol I’ve ever had was communion wine, which doesn’t count because ours was diluted with water and we dipped the wafer in, which gave me less than an ounce of liquid. I have no intention to drink until I am 21. For me, if I get caught, all dreams of medical school basically go out the window, and I would have spent almost 14 years working towards something I could not ever have. Plus, since I have no clue how I react with alcohol, I have this feeling that I might drink too much and make some really regrettable decisions that I would rather not have to deal with.
So, you may ask, what can I do if I don’t want to go to a party and get drunker than drunk? Answer: A lot of things! Here are a couple of my personal favorites:
1. Catch a movie/concert/theater performance
Yes, this seems like something you would do in high school. But it’s still a lot of fun, and can be cheap (which is nice if you’re on a budget like I am). Lots of schools occasionally offer free movie screenings (we showed Anchorman a couple of weeks ago and Hocus Pocus on Halloween), and local theaters may offer student discounts or student rush tickets for live shows. School-affiliated performing arts groups also offer reasonably-priced or free tickets (i.e. $5 for a midnight showing of our one theater group’s performance of Rocky Horror Picture Show, complete with audience participation), and it gives you an opportunity to see the talent of your fellow classmates. Also be on the lookout for special programs within venues that offer free tickets in exchange for volunteer work. For example, I get free tickets to our one auditorium, and all I have to do is live tweet the event!
2. Hallway Jam Session
At least in my corner of the dorm building, we have a lot of guitar players. Occasionally, one of them will break out their guitar, and we all will begin to sing along with whatever song is playing. This is how I got to know a couple of my really good friends, and I love listening to them play while my door is propped open and I’m working on homework.
3. Pay Attention to On-Campus Activities
Yeah yeah yeah… I know. I sound like someone who works with freshmen at the school. But really, do pay attention to what’s going on. We get an email every week about campus activities, and a lot of them are a lot of fun. A group of us went to a Great Gatsby-themed party earlier tonight and had a blast! Everyone was dressed up (I was in my favorite heels), and everyone had a wonderful time. The best part was that it was completely free and I didn’t have to go trek throughout the city in order to find the location (since it was right on campus)! Activities can range from dances to spelling bees to volunteer opportunities, and they’re great chances to get to know new people.
4. Call it a night in!
Really, who doesn’t enjoy an evening with your roommate(s) where you wear sweats, order food to be delivered, and just chill in the room?! You can watch a movie, make paper snowflakes (if it’s close to Christmas), and just have fun! Plus, you don’t have to dress up and act like you have to impress anyone!
Until next time 🙂
Happy Almost-Halloween! I figured that, since midterms are wrapping up for everyone here, I would share some things that I have learned from my first 2 months of college!
1. MapQuest and iMaps can, and will be, your best friends the first couple of weeks.
Ok this seems kinda simple. But, if you are like me and
get lost walking in a straight line are directionally challenged, then the walking directions from MapQuest or whatever map site you use will be your saving grace when navigating around a big campus for the first time. Plus, you can send MapQuest directions to your phone and save a tree or 2!
2. Don’t be afraid to try new things!
This has probably been said on every college tour/presentation/anything, but it’s true! You never know what you’ll end up liking. For instance, I thought it would be a smart idea to take a self-defense course since I’m living in a big city, and I would prefer not to get attacked by some creep. I have never been athletic or violent, so I thought that I might end up hating it since I would feel stupid. Right now, it’s one of my favorite classes and I have met 2 of my good friends through it. College is all about finding who you are, so don’t be afraid to try something you wouldn’t have touched with a 10-foot pole before!
3. Open dorm doors will attract people. But that’s ok. You’ll most likely become best friends with them.
This might have only happened to me, but, by opening my door, I actually met the people who live across the hall and down the hall from me. It’s cool because, if one of us has the door to our living area open (our dorms are kinda like mini-apartments for 4 people. It’s quite nice), we’ll yell stuff at each other when we’re entering or leaving our own rooms. We’ve gone and ended up doing our homework or folded our laundry that we just pulled out of the dryer in each others’ rooms. It’s so much fun, and it’s one of my favorite things about my dorm building 🙂
4. Don’t be ashamed of what you’re interested in. You’re almost guaranteed to find someone who likes the same things.
Where I grew up, everyone was kind of interested in the same types of things (Justin Bieber, mainstream pop culture, tv sitcoms, etc.). There’s nothing wrong with that, but I just wasn’t that into those types of things. I love British television (Sherlock and Doctor Who), love rock music (I’m listening to My Chemical Romance at the moment), and anything geeky (Bill Nye is my hero). When I came to college, I had no idea how easy it would be to find people who like the same things as me. As it turned out, my super-awesome RA is a huge geek (we constantly talk about Supernatural, even though she’s 2+ seasons ahead of me at the moment), one member of my quiz team likes Doctor Who, and my entire writing class is a member of one fandom or another. People who dig what you dig do exist, you just have to find them.
5. Do what you love, and love what you do. Just make sure you can find a job.
Fun fact: you do actually have to pay back your college loans! Shocker, right?! The truth is, you can go to school, and you can get a 4.0 and be super involved and have a kick-butt resume, but if you major in something like “Early Classical Interpretive Dance” (which I just made off the top of the head. If people actually study this, I want to meet them) where there is literally no job market, it’s all pointless. I’m not recommending majoring in, say, Chemistry, when you hate science with a burning passion and would much rather play the trumpet. But make sure that, while you’re investing your (or your parent’s) money into 4 years of education, make sure that it’s something that you can make money off of eventually. I’m fortunate that Biology and Medicine are both my passion and a booming job market, but I’m also passionate about music. I’m not majoring in it, but I’m still playing the sax and doing what I love.
Thanks for reading! Feel free to comment/drop me a question/send me a picture of your lunch/ whatever! I’d love to hear from the people who hear my ramblings!
Sorry for the lack of posts recently. College has been, well, college. Homework, projects, and all sorts of fun stuff like that have officially taken over my life. But I have some time before my next class, so I figured I’d write a quick post 🙂
Disclaimer: This is going to be a giant fan girl moment. If you don’t care about my fangirl-ness, then don’t read. I won’t be offended.
Remember how I posted about sending surveys to celebrities involved with adaptations of Sherlock Holmes? Well, thanks to the magic of Tumblr and Twitter, I saw that someone who sent Andrew Scott (Moriarty on the BBC series) a somewhat similar survey got a response from him! She said that it took her between a month and 2 months to hear a response. Since today is the 2-week anniversary of me putting the letters in the mail, I hopefully may have a completed survey by the time I actually have to submit the final paper for a grade! Also, if Andrew is known to do these things, who’s to say that the other people I sent surveys to won’t?!
He also sent the girl an autograph, which, if I got one, would be my first non-musician autograph! (I have things signed by “Weird Al”, Fitz and the Tantrums, A Great Big World, and 2Cellos, and from parts of the Broadway casts of Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark and American Idiot, but nothing from any TV/Film actors).
So here’s hoping that maybe, just maybe, I will be able to throw in some first-hand quotes from the big names 😀
Remember how I talked about those surveys I was sending out for my Sherlock Holmes project? Well, they’re in the mail now. I know I really shouldn’t be, but I’m nervous about them. I love how they turned out, and I’m proud to say that I did this, but that doesn’t help. I think it’s the fact that I can’t personally go and hand everyone a copy and say “hi I’m a student working on this project, and I would love it if you could fill this out for me” and then see if they’re interested.
Well, I could do that, but I’d go broke from the plane tickets, hotels, bail payments for alleged stalking, etc.
I think the part that bothers me the most is that everything’s out of my control.
I’m not a control freak or anything, but I like to know what’s going on.
I can’t even guarantee that over half of the people I sent surveys to will be able to send back the surveys, since apparently Americans can’t pre-pay for postage for something to be sent back from London (I included self-addressed envelopes with everything and, at least for the USA-bound ones, I pre-paid for return postage)! Gotta love living in America, where we currently have no government! But, that’s a rant for another day and another blog post…
So. Now the waiting game begins. Fingers crossed that I hear something and add that little bit of special-ness (is that a word?) to my paper.
One of the reasons I chose to go to a school in a big city was because there’s always SOMETHING happening. Whether it be a concert, some famous speaker, or just an event at a museum, I needed to have more than just a dorm to look forward to on the weekends.
Imagine my surprise when I found out that everyone’s favorite
psycho radical church, Westboro Baptist, is coming to the part of the campus I live on next Friday. If they were protesting on the main campus, it would make sense. But my little side campus? Okay then…
I don’t know about you all, but I am a huge supporter of LGBTQA rights. So, when I found out that Westboro was protesting after my last class for the day ended, I knew I wanted to go and counter-protest. I’m not one of the gung-ho, “my way is right so you better agree with it or else,” supporters, but I truly believe that everyone has a right to get married, regardless of who it’s to. So less than 12 hours after I first heard of the protest, I bought a shirt that says “Straight but not Narrow” and joined a Facebook event for a peaceful counter-protest of students.
You know what the coolest part is, though? Just how many people are rallying behind the counter-protest. At the moment, over 160 people have RSVPd to the event in less than 24 hours, and I’m guessing that the final turn-out is going to be much larger. I’m sure people will have their own picket signs, and will show as much, if not more, enthusiasm than the Westboro people. Words cannot explain how proud and happy I am to be going to a school where we can turn an undesirable event into one that shows our diversity and support. If this is what can be done my freshman year, I can’t wait to see what difference I can make in the next 4 years 🙂
I’ve always been a fan of stuff. Elementary school saw me with my first celebrity crush (Zac Efron), while middle school was filled with everything Jonas Brothers (who were my first and so far only concert (don’t judge)). High school began with a very short love of Twilight (the books were kinda good, but the movies? not so much), and then, in my senior year, I found Doctor Who, Sherlock, and The Avengers.
However, in all of my love of things fan-ish, I haven’t had much experience with one thing:
Up until now, I have sent 1 piece of fan mail in my life. I was 13, and it was to the Jonas Brothers. I heard nothing back (no shocker there). Now, even though I’m older and (supposedly) more mature, I’m getting ready to send out a very large amount of fan mail.
Well, it’s not really fan mail. It’s actually for a project I have in my writing class. My class centers around media fandoms, and, by the end of the semester, I have to write a 15+ page paper on some form of fandom. I thought it would be fun to look at the history of the Sherlock Holmes fandom, starting with the original books and short stories and ending with the modern movies and TV shows. One day, I thought, “You know what would be cool? If I could get an interesting quote by Benedict Cumberbatch (who plays Holmes on the BBC show) about his experiences with the fandom! Wait-why stop with Ben? I wonder what the other people involved with the show think about the fans!” One thing led to another, and now I’m writing and mailing out a bunch of surveys for people involved with not only the BBC show, but the CBS show Elementary and the Sherlock Holmes movies with Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law.
The phrase “I hope I hear back from them” is an understatement of what I’m feeling right now, and I haven’t even printed out the letters and surveys yet! I really, really, REALLY want this to work. And it’s not even because I’m one of those obsessed fans who wants to parade around the world screaming “I JUST GOT A SIGNATURE FROM A FAMOUS PERSON LOOK AT ME I’M AMAZEBALLS!!!” before fainting. I honestly think the people I’m contacting could provide some fascinating insight into the modern fandom. Plus, how many people can say, “Benedict Cumberbatch and/or Martin Freeman helped me with a project while I was a freshman in college”? Not many, I can tell you that much.
Fingers, toes, arms, and, well, anything that is crossable is crossed right now that this works and I get at least one survey back.