Physical contact on transit is awkward for everyone

We all have taken transit at some point in our lives. A lot of us may also take it regularly. Regardless of what the situation is, there’s something you always dread. That thing is accidentally making contact with a person awkwardly. You will think about that moment for the rest of your commute or even the entire day. Some people hate physical contact to the point where it makes them feel disgusted.

I’ve been in this situation a few times. Once, I was boarding a bus and it starts moving. I was walking towards the back and held on to a pole. I felt it wobble more than it should’ve. That’s when I realized it wasn’t a pole. It was someone’s hockey stick. According to the guy holding the hockey stick, I wasn’t the first person to do that. While it wasn’t physical contact with a person, it was still someone’s personal property and I haven’t forgotten about it.

This next one happened while I was already on the bus. I was standing on the step between the front and the back of the bus. This bus decided to stop somewhere where it wasn’t anticipated. I was holding on to a pole and had both feet planted on the platform. Somehow, I still managed to swerve right into the people in front of me. This lady who was sitting down saved me from completely falling over by grabbing my arm.

Finally, this one happened this morning. I was grabbing a seat on the bus and was in the process of sitting down. There was a lady in a seat that was left of where I was going to be sitting. While I was sitting down, I held on to the pole that was on the left. When I say down, my arm landed on her bag and I immediately apologized. The sad part is this could’ve been prevented had I held on to the pole on the right of my seat.

You will eventually make contact with someone in an awkward way. Whether you decide to fixate on it for the rest of the day (or the rest of your life) is up to you. Let’s be real for a moment, that person is feeling the same way you do.

You can only save one album, they say

You may have seen those posts online (usually on Twitter) about which album you can save. Typically they are all part of the same genre. Each post will use four album covers and you get to pick which one you’ll “save” (referring to which one is your favourite).

The ones I have seen so far are mostly for metalcore and post-hardcore. It makes a lot of sense for these fandoms since the music is more focused on albums than singles. Since albums can sometimes contain songs you hate, you’re left with a choice between an album that has your favourite song or the one with three from your top five.

There are a few flaws in these. For one, people will just pick the one for their favourite artist. Even if one has more songs they like, they need to pick the one their favourite artist has made. Next, at least from my experience, there are always two albums that wouldn’t be worth saving. Even if the albums weren’t bad, they might not be ones that people would want to save. While part of the process is about sacrificing an album, should they all be albums where people:s brains would explode if someone can only choose one? Whenever I did a few of these, I felt like it was too easy to pick which ones I would ditch right away. Another point from this is that the number of arguments isn’t at the level you would expect them to be. Sure, people will debate or jokingly attack others, but violent outrage doesn’t seem to exist.

You might have that album that you would save no matter what the circumstance is. You might also have that album you would leave in a ditch. No matter what, you will always have something you enjoy from the one that you saved from whatever is affecting the other three.

The best singing voice is the one that fits the music

Mötley Crüe is going on tour this year with Def Leppard. You’ve probably already heard that John 5 (Rob Zombie, Marilyn Manson) is filling in for Mick Mars. However, some people wish they would stop, especially with how Vince Neil sounds these days. A lot of people have heard Vince Neil in his current state. They would joke about how he was singing in different languages at once. Honestly, they’re not that far off. Other than the choruses where they would just use a track (not a backing track or lipsync), there is no way of understanding Vince Neil’s singing.

Just because someone’s voice is “bad” doesn’t necessarily mean it’s destroying the music. Take Dave Mustaine of Megadeth for example. By no means do people ever consider him the best singer in the world. He didn’t even want to be the singer of the band. However, his voice was the right choice for Megadeth.

Another example is Geddy Lee from Rush. While people like it in the lower register, they immediately try to tune him out when it comes to the higher register. But try to imagine Rush with higher pitch singing that wasn’t Geddy Lee’s. Sounds weird, doesn’t it? This type of music is mostly about the instrumentals so having questionable vocals are kind of a mainstay.

One more example is Yoko Ono. If you know The Beatles, then you have heard of Yoko Ono. Anyone that hasn’t heard Yoko has no idea how polarizing her “talents” are. She doesn’t really sing, but just makes noises. And I’m not talking about harsh vocals, those take a lot of skill to get right. But let’s just say no one goes out of their way to listen to Yoko.

Some singers are objectively bad, but still are good enough to serve the music, and vocalists need to give up. At least there are still good singers out there. If you can, just enjoy the person you like listening to.

Crepes are better than you think

Crepes are one of those things you underestimate. Think of a pancake, but better. It’s thin so you can consume it a lot easier, and while you can just get a plain one, why would you do that to yourself? You’re getting that crepe filled with chocolate sauce, covered in sugar, and other things that your sweet tooth will love, but your dentist will hate. Dare I say, they’re better than pancakes, waffles, and anything you would have for dessert at night. You might have a different opinion, but admit it, you will be excited more for a crepe than anything else.

Years ago, we would have a crepe truck come to my school once every semester. It was usually for French classes to go down and practice their French while also getting a crepe. It was pretty tame during class times, with people getting their crepes like normal. However, during lunch, people who didn’t have a French class that semester would order and the line-up would be too long for anyone in the back to get theirs before the next class. I would forget to bring money every time the crepe truck came so I would miss out. I have to admit, I was ready to take a bite out of my friends’ crepes but resisted the urge.

People generally get something that’s just buttered or filled with chocolate and banana. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of just having it plain (although I’m not opposed to it). I need to have something crazy going down in my crepe. I need the chocolate, the bananas, the strawberries, or other sweet things to make the crepe experience a million times better than it already is.

Crepes will stay in our lives forever. The next time you have the choice between pancakes, waffles, and crepes, choose the crepe.

Your Christmas decorations should not be up in February

Dear lord. It’s that neighbour that you absolutely despise. They are the type of person to put up their Christmas decorations before Halloween is over, and the type to put away their decorations after Easter. Christmas is only supposed to be in December for you, not more than half the year. You’re tired of Santa Claus’ presence in town. Cupid, a leprechaun, and the Easter bunny absolutely hate that white-bearded man in gaudy red clothing that was never in style. Everyone is already tired of that inflatable snowman, the Christmas wreath that doesn’t match your house, and the lights that are around a real tree. They get it, you can decorate a real tree that’s not an evergreen tree.

Unfortunately, my family is guilty of keeping Christmas decorations up for a long time. We had ours up since early November. Due to religious stuff, we have to keep them up for a little bit after New Year’s. I can deal with that, it’s not a big deal. We did take them down on January 3rd, which feels appropriate enough. Except we have taken down the lights from our garage and our real tree outside. We now look like that neighbour you despise. The lights are never on so I don’t get the point of keeping them up. I would take them down but I’m not the one in the house to make decisions like that. I don’t know when we’re taking them down but with how long it has been, I don’t think it will be anytime soon. We even had a wreath at our front door for a long time. It is the worst thing for the door as I can’t even check who is outside.

If you can, don’t be that neighbour. Put up and take down your Christmas decorations at appropriate times of the year. Your neighbourhood will thank you.

Time is a weird thing to feel

You’re looking at your playlist, select the song that you like, and play it to oblivion. You still feel like the song is relatively new. You check the date the song was released. “2013,” you say. “That was only three years ago”. Wrong. It’s been ten years since the release of a lot of things. Sempiternal by Bring Me The Horizon, Iron Man 3, and even that cousin that was born in 2013 is about to turn 10 this year. Time is flying fast, isn’t it?

(Note: This tweet is satire. However, it gets the point across)

I was once at a Christmas party back in 2019 (which was more than three years ago at the time this article is being written). We were opening Christmas gifts, and a family friend got a makeup mirror. My aunt asked how old she was and was shocked to learn that she was 13. She then asked me my age for reference. I was 16 at the time, turning 17 the next month. This aunt has seen me grow since I was 1. I honestly can’t blame her for being shocked. She’s seen me grow, but almost every adult that I grew up with has stayed the same since I was a baby.

Time is kind of a construct. Time never really accelerates or slows down. January felt pretty short for what it was. I feel like last year’s January went on for a while. Then there’s May of 2021. I finished school early (minus going to jazz rehearsals every Tuesday morning) which meant I had a lot of free time. That month felt like it went on forever. I’m not sure whether it was the lack of productivity or the fact that the pandemic was still in full effect, but either way, it felt like an eternity.

Time will keep going, and it’s going to be you that will feel it accelerating or slowing down. But don’t be shocked when tomorrow is 2045.

Go on that vacation you’ve always wanted

Today is National Plan Your Vacation Day. You might already be planning your next vacation to that place you’ve always wanted to go to. You see plane ticket prices right now and say “Hey, this looks like a good deal.” Or you’re planning to go on a road trip in a couple of months and need to make sure you have the time. Either way, you’re planning on going somewhere this year.

My parents always planned trips far ahead. Back in late 2019, they were planning a trip to Europe for their anniversary during the second half of March 2020. Of course, we all know what happened. My parents were still considering going but ultimately decided not to for safety reasons. They finally got to go during the summer last year and to this day, they always talk about that trip.

Back in 2021, our family decided to take a road trip, which was our first trip in 2 years. My parents spent some time deciding on what to do. Road trips are weird because they actually live up more to the name than you think. I’m pretty sure we spent over 75% of that trip driving around rather than doing other things like visiting national parks, eating at fast food places or fancy restaurants, and doing other fun activities. I have to admit, the drives were still pretty good. You’re just sitting there, blasting music through your headphones and still being able to hear everything around you, watching movies, and talking with your family about things you’re going to forget about the next day.

Vacations are something you should always cherish. You don’t get a lot of them in your lifetime, so make sure you appreciate them. You can go alone, or with family and/or friends. Either way, you should go on one at some point this year if you can.

You don’t need expensive gear to make content

Gear is something you need to have to make video or audio content of some sort. Whether that would be a camera and/or a microphone, you’re going to eventually need it. However, gear should only be second to making content.

The people that tell you to buy pricey gear have no idea what they’re talking about. Take for example microphones. Unless you’re a musician or voice talent, there is no need to spend that much on a microphone and/or audio interface. You don’t even need an audio interface if you’re just making YouTube videos or Twitch streaming. Your stuff is going through the internet’s compression anyways and the differences between inexpensive and expensive equipment become irrelevant. I used to just use my phone’s microphone to record audio for assignments. Was it professional quality? No, but it worked for what I needed. Acoustics matter more than the gear itself. If your acoustics are terrible such as sound bouncing off the wall, your microphone won’t matter. You just need to make sure your acoustics are dead enough for your mic to not pick up any reverb.

Even cameras don’t matter too much since internet compression is going to make add artifacts anyways. Sure, you need them to at least be passable, but you don’t need anything that costs a lot of money or does more than you really need. I know someone who uses an older smartphone as a webcam. Considering that you’re probably not going to watch the stream on a big TV, the camera doesn’t matter.

The gap between inexpensive and expensive gear used to be pretty big. You would be able to tell if something was shot on a smartphone pretty easily or if it was a USB mic rather than an XLR mic. Nowadays, you can get away with a smartphone camera and a USB mic.

Never listen to anyone that says you need expensive gear as a content creator. They probably spent a lot on gear without knowing how to make it work as intended, or can even tell the difference.

Don’t complain about your favourite media having things that make up their identity

You probably have seen Pink Floyd’s announcement for celebrating 50 years of Dark Side of the Moon. Their 50th-anniversary logo looks pretty sick. However, there are some “fans” who are disgusted by the new logo. They noticed the rainbow and immediately called it LGBTQ+ propaganda. Yet these “fans” can’t remember that the original cover had a prism that put out a rainbow. It’s almost like these people aren’t actually fans and are just people who want to hate the world’s progress.

This isn’t the first time people completely miss something about the things they like. Look at Rage Against The Machine. Their music is all about politics, especially Killing In The Name. It gets super confusing when “fans” say they need to leave out the politics from their shows as if they didn’t know what exactly their music stands for. It’s kind of like saying Star Wars shouldn’t be political, despite the fact that “war” is in the name.

People are going to ignore what their favourite pieces of media are about and say certain things shouldn’t be a part of it, despite the fact that those things are the foundation of what they like. Imagine chocolate chip cookies without chocolate chips. Or snowmen without snow. Or houses without foundations. Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? Now apply those to the things we mentioned. Imagine Dark Side of the Moon without the rainbow on the cover. Nothing else could scream that album without the rain. Or Rage Against The Machine without politics. The band name wouldn’t even make sense unless you take it literally. Or Star Wars without war. The entire franchise wouldn’t even happen.

Before you say something doesn’t belong in a thing you like, think about why it’s in there. If it’s the entire foundation of that thing you like, you shouldn’t be complaining about it.

Different cookies can be better than just chocolate chip

Cookies are something we’ve been eating since our childhoods. Despite the variety out there, the only kind you’re most likely going to see is chocolate chip. What even is special about chocolate chip cookies anyways? The only notable thing in them is the chocolate chips. No other colours. Just the 2 shades of brown that you see on the cookie itself.

Chocolate chip cookies came about when Ruth Graves Wakefield used bits of a chocolate bar in her cookies. There’s a myth out there saying that she attempted to make fully chocolate cookies but ended up creating the cookie we know today instead. This myth was debunked by her, saying that the chocolate chip cookie we know is what she attempted.

Cookies have a bunch of varieties when it comes to what’s in them. Some notable ones that I’ve tried include M&Ms, peanut butter, and raisin.

M&M cookies are a nice variation of chocolate chip cookies. Since the outer shell prevents them from melting as easily(if at all just by looking at them), you get most of the chocolate content that was already there, rather than going through the melted chocolate phase when you eat freshly baked cookies.

Next is peanut butter. As a child, I attempted to make peanut butter cookies by putting blobs of peanut butter on a tray and cooking them in a toaster over. It didn’t work because they burned for obvious reasons. When I got to try real peanut butter cookies, they were pretty much heaven. It didn’t need any special chunks to make them good. All they needed was some of the peanut butter magic.

Finally, there are raisins. As children, we generally stay away from fruits and vegetables, especially in our desserts. When eating oatmeal raisin cookies as an adult, you soon realize what you’ve been missing out on. It’s the perfect amount of sweetness that belongs in a cookie, dare I say better than chocolate chips.

We will be eating cookies for the rest of our lives. No matter what’s in your cookies, they will always be a treat you will cherish.