Fant Open Dorm: Blackout!

On Saturday, March 9th Fant held it’s annual Open Dorm event. The theme was “Blackout!: Everything must glow.” And everything did indeed glow. Black lights and glow-in-the-dark bands were abundant in the lobby and epic dance music was playing all night long. Many students, from freshmen to seniors, were present and dancing to the beat. Chicken fingers, gummy bears, and chips were offered to eat with fruit slushies or water to drink. There were a few group dances that many people participated in such as the Electric Shuffle, and a human train was even started. The energy throughout the lobby was incredible, and it was evident that everyone else could feel it as they danced and had a great time with friends.

Downstairs in the basement was an area for those who wanted to take a break from dancing. And there were plenty of options to choose from. A wall with paint-filled balloons was setup for anyone who wanted to try their hand at some impromptu art. On the dessert table, which is probably the main reason people went down there, brownies, cookies, cakes, and Jell-O were available. Next to this table was a Wii with Wipeout: Winter Edition ready to play. Several students tried their hand at the game and had a few giggles as they tried to guide their character through the crazy obstacle course.

Now the purpose of an Open Dorm is to give the students, who normally wouldn’t be allowed to, a chance to see the rooms. So naturally, if someone didn’t want to dance, or eat, or play with paint, they could go upstairs and see their friend’s room. A group of about twelve people did just this and played a rollicking game of Telephone-Pictionary. By the end of the night, they were on the floor laughing at the crazy scenarios their friends had come up with. Even though the guys had to leave at 11:00, they continued the fun at Forrest Lobby because they just didn’t want to stop.

The Fant Open Dorm was one of the most fun-filled nights on campus this semester. The girls did a great job with all the planning an decorations. If you enjoyed it, let them know: I am sure they will appreciate it.

Theatrical Society Holds Auditions for Spring’s “Harvey”

The Theatrical Society began the year with auditions for the play “Harvey.” Which is a wonderfully comedic story about a man who sees a 6’5” rabbit. His claims drive his family crazy and hilarity ensues as they attempt to commit him into an asylum. Several students showed up to perform a variety of comedic monologues. Everything ranging from what women are looking for in a man, to Alice in Wonderland, and being stranded on an island. My personal favorite was Alex Luthor’s “Umbridge” monologue from the wildly funny “Very Potter Musical.” In case you didn’t know, he is quite convincing at being an angry woman. If you weren’t able to attend the auditions, but would like to help with the play in some other way, contact Chance Rigdon or Tiffany Rowlett. He is the director of this year’s play and she will be helping him as assistant director. They will be able to answer any questions you have, or point you in the right direction to someone who can.

There are a variety of jobs for everyone. If you enjoy working with people, perhaps you could help with advertising and spread the word about the Theatrical Society. Hospitality is another good option for those who enjoy working with others. In this position, you have the opportunity to welcome people when they come to the play or bring refreshments to the actors. For a more hands-on experience, you could join the backstage crew and help set up, move, and take down props and other play-related items. It’s a good experience for those who are interested drama, but would rather not act on stage. Make-up, which is required on stage, is a little awkward for the men to out on. So all you ladies who are good at putting in makeup should consider helping out in that way. The Theatrical Society can always use more people. It takes a lot of work to put on a play, and every volunteer counts.

And remember, as you’re walking to and from your classes, keep an eye out for Harvey: you may just see him.

Explosions: An Ellie Goulding Review

After much consideration, I chose to review “Explosions” by Ellie Goulding. She is not a Christian artist, but she is popular in today’s culture and it seems wise to understand the music we listen to.

The song starts with a cappella voices that sound very much like they were recorded on a record. There is a melancholic feel that fits perfectly with the theme of the song. This whole song is about the memory of an ended relationship: she is reminiscing about a man she thought she loved. Here are the lyrics to the first verse:

 “You trembled like you’d seen a ghost, and I gave in.
I lack the things you need the most, you said where have you been.
You wasted all that sweetness to run and hide. I wonder why
I remind you of the days you poured your heart into, but you never tried.
I’ve fallen from grace, took a blow to my face.
I’ve loved and I’ve lost. I’ve loved and I’ve lost.”

He is trembling because he saw something from his past that he thought was over. This girl that he sees reminds him of a past relationship, and he never tried to pour his heart into this relationship because he is afraid. He hurts her in the process because he is not mature enough to commit to her; the pain is so intense that she equates it with a physical injury.

The chorus is short but says a lot:

 “Explosions on the day you wake up
Needing somebody and you’ve learned it’s ok to be afraid
But it will never be the same. But it will never be the same.”

The explosions when he wakes up refers to an awakening of sorts. He realizes that his life is shattered from a past experience and needs that one special person. But he hasn’t quite learned that it is alright to be afraid: this causes him to run away. The next verse and chorus give a little more insight into what happened:

 “You left my soul bleeding in the dark so you could be king.
The rules you set are still untold to me and I’ve lost faith in everything.
The nights you could cope, your intentions were gold.
But the mountains will shake. I need to know I can still make
Explosions on the day you wake up.
Needing somebody and you’ve learned it’s okay to be afraid.
But it will never be the same.”

He left her soul in the dark because he was being selfish. He wasn’t thinking of her and again she equates the feeling to physical pain. His “rules” were abstract and unclear: she didn’t know what he wanted or what he was doing. This caused her to be insecure because the relationship was unstable. On the days when he could cope (meaning he could deal with the threat of commitment), he proved to be a tender, loving gentleman. The shaking mountains symbolize the ground under his feet moving out from underneath him: even though he is able to be mature occasionally, it isn’t enough to bind the relationship together. This time, the word “explosions” refers the passion between them. She wants to know that there is still a mutual fire burning in them. She knows that he needs someone there for him even if he is afraid of the relationship. But he still hasn’t learned that it is ok to be afraid: he still cannot trust her. And that is why it will never be the same.

Here is the bridge:

 “As the floods move in, and your body starts to sink
I was the last thing on your mind: I know you better than you think. 
Cause it simple darling. I gave you a warning. 
Now everything you own is falling from the sky in pieces. 
So watch them fall with you in slow motion. 
I pray that you’ll find peace of mind.
I’ll find you another time. I’ll love you, another time.”

The floods are symbolic of the end of this relationship: the weight of all the conflict has finally come crashing down on him and he begins to sink. As soon as this starts to happen, he realizes what he had and how great it was. The old adage “You never know what you have until you lose it,” is very applicable here. She tried to warn him about this outcome, but it is too late now. His life is shattered and it is crashing down around him. It is as if his life is flashing before his eyes in slow motion: everything he thought was good just can’t compare to this woman that he just lost. Even though she has been hurt by him, she still wants him to find peace. She wants him to resolve the conflict in his life so he can begin to trust again. But she realizes that he needs some time to do this so she lets him go and says she will find him again at a later time. She will even love him again, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it will be a romantic love: she will simply forgive him for the pain he caused.

Finally, the chorus is repeated:

“Explosions on the day you wake up. 
Needing somebody and you’ve learned it’s ok to be afraid. 
But it will never be the same.”

This time, the explosions when he wakes up is referring to the realization that washes over him each morning: the realization that he has lost one of the best things in his life. He finally understands that he needs that special someone and even that he needs to trust them, but it is too late. His chance with her is gone. But I hope that he remembers this in his next relationship; it would certainly be less painful.

WIM Cupcake Fundraiser

On Tuesday, October 9th, the Woman’s Intentional Ministry held a fundraiser for Toccoa Life: a non-profit organization that encourages and mentors women who are dealing, or have dealt, with pregnancy and abortion. At this event, they showed the movie “October Baby”. If you have never seen this movie, I highly recommend that you watch it! It is a very powerful story and I believe you will be moved by it.

While I was walking around examining the many different kinds of homemade cupcakes, I met Morgan Ormsby who was heading up the fundraiser. I talked with her for a few minutes to get a better idea about WIM and this exciting cupcake event. I had never heard of WIM before this night, so I was curious what they did. Ormsby told me that it is here to serve woman and help them through prayer: They spread the love of God through their relationships with the women. “This specific fundraiser” she said, “is serving as a day of remembrance for all the aborted babies.”

I liked what I was hearing, so I continued by asking her why students need to be aware of this issue. She replied that students should understand why they are pro-life. It is unwise to make a claim or hold to a belief, just because other Christians are doing it, if you don’t understand why you are choosing that. Ormsby doesn’t want anyone, male or female, to misunderstand the debate about abortion. There are people hurting as a result of abortion and we need to help them.

By this point, I was telling myself that I should be friends with this lady: she is awesome! I charged ahead with two final questions. I asked her why the movie “October Baby” was being shown at this event. What was it’s significance? Ormsby explained to me that it is the story of a girl who goes on a search for her birth mother. What makes it so applicable to the WIM event, is the fact that she was a failed abortion. Her mother tried to end this girl’s life when she was just a baby, but thanks be to God that it was unsuccessful. It is an incredible story of forgiveness, and is definitely a movie I would want to own. Before we parted ways, I asked Ormsby where the proceeds from that night went. She responded by saying the money went to Toccoa Life which does a lot of the same things that WIM does.

I thanked Ormsby for her time and, looking at my watch, realized that I still had a few minutes. I scanned the crowd and found an enthusiastic participant in the event: Carma Rowlett. I briskly walked over to her and asked two quick questions. First, I asked her why she believed it was important to support this cause. Her reply was great. She said, “It is important to understand that just because we are at TFC, it doesn’t mean we are part of the community. Students need to recognize the need everywhere around them and be prepared to act in times of need.” When I asked her if she was going to spread the word about WIM, she replied with an energetic “Absolutely!” and said she wished that more people could be there that night.

As I gathered up my things to leave, I noticed all the different cupcakes. They looked so good that I quickly bought one of each flavor because I couldn’t decide on one kind! I am glad I did, though, because that money is going to be used to help women through some of their most difficult times.

If you would like to know more about this ministry, just talk to Ormsby. She will be more than happy to explain it to you. You can also talk to Erica Patton: She is a hardcore WIM fan. She supports it passionately and wants everyone else to do the same. Even if you don’t get actively involved in this ministry, spread the word: you may end up helping a woman down the road who had no hope until she heard about WIM. You may even plant a seed of God’s love that will, hopefully, one day sprout into a relationship with Him.  I am looking forward to seeing you at the next WIM event: I hope to see you there supporting it wholeheartedly.

Warning: Syllabus Shock May Power Surge

As a freshman, I had never heard the term “syllabus shock.” What could be so bad about a syllabus? Doesn’t everyone love them? They seemed harmless enough. So in my naivety I charged forward and started collecting these mysterious syllabi. One for Music Theory, one for Aural Skills, one for Choir, and one for Freshman Comp. By the end of the day, I had gathered a large sum of papers. I looked over them and thought “this is going to be easy” and then went to bed. The next day, I woke up, grabbed my backpack (I needed a place to put my new syllabi), and headed to class. One for Teacher Orientation, one for College Choir, and one for Recital Attendance. When I got to the cafeteria for lunch, I was expecting a syllabus for that too. I can handle this though! I really can. I hope I can.

More syllabi were handed out the next day. I even received a revised syllabus! What treachery was this? Is it even legal to give out so many pieces of paper? By the end of the week, I had enough syllabi to compose a novella. To make matters worse, I had not even organized them. So when I needed to know the class requirement for, say, my English class, I had to hunt through all my papers in order to do so: a process that took entirely too long. I wondered if this was a normal experience. Did it happen to everyone? How do people deal with it? What methods are effective for keeping track of my classes? Thankfully, Professor Stufft had some great tips that he learned from his Sunday school teacher. Each night, sit at a desk with your books (or syllabi) on the left side of the desk. Go through each one and review it. Do the work or read the book so the material stays fresh in your mind, and then put it on the right side of the desk. If you don’t want to do a certain subject yet, just put it back in the pile on the left. Make sure you take care of it before you go to bed though. This method helps you keep track of your classes and the topics stay fresh in your mind. If you do this every night you won’t have to worry about pop quizzes because you will be able to recall the answers from memory.

There is one downside to this method: It takes discipline! We would rather go to the coffee shop with friends than do homework. It is a lot easier to do fun things like hiking, playing card games, and sports. But if you use this method for one week, I am sure you will see how beneficial it is. Since I have started using this method, I have not gotten behind or missed an assignment; an indicator that this technique works.

One other routine I have gotten into is carrying my backpack around with all my papers in it. That way I can work on homework wherever I am. If I have a few extra minutes before class starts, I can take out my notebook and work on my Freshman Composition paper, or I can read a few verses for Spiritual Formation. The key is to actually do the work! Some students carry planners with them. This is a good idea because you can write down new assignments so you don’t lose track of them. Others may just write down the dates in a notebook. Whichever method you use, make sure it works for you.

Effective time management is a very important aspect of success at college. But it is also something that many college students (not just freshman) don’t know how to do well. So if you are feeling stressed or worried, talk to someone. Whether it be a friend or one of the school counselors, just find a good person to talk with. You may be surprised at how much it helps.

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