Sept 11 - Alright, this will serve as my first journal entry but will not contain much because I am currently confused with some of the readings and course content. I am sure that it will all sort it self out eventually. Hopefully this page will work, as it is linked of another page of mine which is kind of dated. Anyways, more to come with time.
Sept 15 - One concept that has been touched on a lot latley, and discussed to death on the discussion board is that of 'imagined communities'. The theory or idea of an imagined community is one that i experienced first hand both in first year, and being a soph this year. I feel that people are focusing too much attention on the negative aspects of the imagined community. There are many advantages to them, and they are quite vital to a student's first week or so at university. A school with 7000 or so first year students is very intimidating, and being placed into a community such as a residence or a faculty helps one to meet friends on a smaller scale. The community does not have barbed-wire fence or a alligator infested moat surrounding it, and students will eventually meet friends from other residences or another 'community' as time goes on. It just takes time to adjust to a new surrounding, and I feel that an 'imagined community' can significantly aid a new student in doing so.
Sept 17 - Today is Wedensday and I have it off. So do countless other MIT students. This makes me realize how unique the MIT-student culture becomes in second year. I have 5 classes this semester with practically the same people in them. I no longer have classes with many of my friends from first year who are in different faculties. Are other faculties like this? Is this a good thing, or a bad thing? I guess only time will really tell. Maybe i will grow sick of seeing the same faces day in and day out, or maybe it will be a good experience complete with joyous experiences and other such wonderful things. No but seriously, I think it's pretty cool that this year and the two following years will be spent with the same colleagues, working towards a common goal. Maybe this is the start of some random, personal theory towards the faculty of MIT that is starting to blossum inside my skull, or maybe I still have no idea what cultural theory really is???
Sept 20 - One thing that i have not talked about yet on this here journal is Canadian icons. I remember this from class and I think it is time to talk about it ( I promise the next entry will be more up-to-date). So yeah, Canadian symbols...Well this is something that i often forget about, or better put, often passes my mind. Some discussed in class are very obvious, and important to this large country. Of course I relate these symbols to Canada, except maybe the Queen (In my opinion she should no longer be a Canadian symbol and should be stripped off of coins and replaces with a CANADIAN)*. Like I said, the symbols discussed in class are important, but I become more aware of Canadian culture when a major issue arrises and the Government actually makes a descision or advocates a certain viewpoint. For example, the current gay-marriage debate. The country is obviously divided on this issue, but it shows that many Canadians are diverse and open-minded. Another example was not joining up with the U. S of A during the latest military adventure. This showed a peaceful side of Canada combined also with conflicting views...isn't that what freedom is about? I like to think that is what Canada is about. Freedom is an important one, and something that i would willingly go to war for, and i'm not a fan of war either. But what is a symbol of freedom? Maybe to some, the flag is? Who knows.............
*Sorry to any fans of the Queen
Sept 23 - Today we watched Merchants of Cool. A film about the industry that is 'us' - teenagers. I feel that the movie is worthy of discussion on my wonderful and special journal page because it relates to everyday teenager life. Of course Jackass did not start the 'extreme' video content, but they definatly spread it to much more people and the number of copycat videos skyrocketed. I found it interesting how when they were discussing the mook, most of their examples were individuals or activities that were cool on a smaller scale, and then MTV took over drove it into the ground. For example, I am sure many people remember good ol' Tom Green when he was in Canada doing his show. The content was original and WAY better. Then MTV or 'the devil' takes him away from this wonderful country, and his show soon starts to suck and eventually ascends into T.V. heaven. The thing happened with Jackass - a show based on some of the content from skate videos like cKy. They took the idea of doing hilariously funny things and put it into a half hour show, which was great and all, but then MTV dishes it out too fast and too much until people get bored of it. It's like when that White Stripes song Seven Nation Army came out. At first i thought it was a great song and was really 'digging' it, until i heard it every frickin second and saw the video way too much. It's just like the cool-hunters who take our ideas and our style, market the hell out of it, and then it's not cool anymore. It's no wonder why the millenium style is just rotating fads from previous decades and generations i.e flared pants from the 60s/70s, aviator glasses from the 80s, and so on. Our generation can be pretty shallow at some times, but i don't think it's totally our fault.
Sept 28 - I recently purchased a couple magazines with intentions of finding some decent pictures to decorate my room with. One of these magazines is the recent issue of Rolling Stone. I haven't bought a Rolling Stone in a while, namely because the cover has always been someone or something i don't particularly care about such as the Olsen twins or that guy from American Idol. This month's is no better, Brittany Spears, but i got it anyway with hopes that there might be something worth reading inside. While i skimmed the magazine for the first time, i decided i would with a critical eye - maybe i'd find something to write about on here. I found that first off, there are way too many advertisements that are obviously ads. The kind that advertise for certain products, complete with models and the company logo. These ads are expected in magazines, so I didn't take too much notice towards them other than the fact that there are too many. Aside from that, i also noticed that most of the other content within the magazine is advertisements in another form. Countless pages are full of publicity for movie stars, musicians, and so on. There is even a whole section in this issue, called 'The Hot List', and it shows us what we should like, listen to, and watch. I haven't read the whole magazine yet, and probably never will, but i found this interesting and decided to share.
Sept 30 - Well, it looks like this will be my last entry for the month of September. My goal for October will be to get at least 3 per week done. September is the month of getting used to things, and now that i have gotten used to things there shoudn't be a problem reaching said goal. Today we talked about space and archetecture both in the real world and the virtual world and so on. I did the readings for this week, well the ones in the book so far at least, and I think they still need some more time to sink in. I think things will come together nicely once i go to the mall and put in my 2 hours of observations. It's the kind of assignment that is actually quite interesting. I love people watching, and sitting in the mall for two hours doing so sounds both interesting and fun. I find malls to be a great subject to analyze, there are so many aspects to it but underneath lies the single goal of selling products in the most efficient manner. I'm sure everyone has been to the department stores such as The Bay and Sears within malls. I can never find my way out of those places, the archetecture of the place reminds me of a Labyrinth only without Jennifer Connelly and David Bowie. Anyways, I am definatly going to take some notes on those crazy stores. That space needs some serious analysis, I wouldn't be surprised if people have been lost in there for years. Well maybe not years, but close....