a spoonful of sugar in the circle of life

I miss the 90's cartoons and will always cherish my Disney VHS collection…if only my VCR still worked

Overseas Adventures

While reading Chapter 5 of “How to Lie With Maps,” I was intrigued by the section about Transport Ads. I have seen a lot of airport maps, but I have never thought about how accurate (or not) they actually were. I was fortunate enough to spend this past week in Madrid, Spain. As my family and I were flying over the Atlantic Ocean, I pulled out the magazine with the map of the Madrid-Barajas International Airport. Our arrival seemed pretty effortless. Get out of the plane in Terminal 4S, get my passport stamped at customs, take the Airport Train to Terminal 4, pick up our luggage, and catch a taxi to the hotel. Like Figure 5.4, the map suggests that getting around the airport is “convenient” (62-63), but in reality it was pretty complicated.

The map of the Madrid-Barajas International Airport doesn’t warn you about the crowded escalators or the amount of walking you have to do before you even step into the airport. My biggest issue with this map was the Airport Train located between the two terminals. By looking at the map, it does not seem like it would take very long to travel from one terminal to the other.  Well after we were smashed like sardines into the train car with nothing to hold onto but the people next to us, the train sped off towards the next terminal. Ten minutes later, we stepped (well actually, we fell) off the train. After picking up our luggage and going through Customs again we finally made it out of the airport. My real life experience put an interesting spin on reading this chapter. I was able to directly relate to the situations presented, and it helped me to better understand them.

Our trusty map will guide us straight and true,
Katie

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The Wonderful World of Disney

This map was an obvious choice for me, as my blog is currently all things Disney. I love this map because now when I think of each movie I am able to imagine the part of the world where they are located. When we were doing the map-embellishment activity in class, we talked about what parts of the city we were familiar with. While most of us were familiar with the area immediately around the OCU campus, there were some places that only a few of us knew. Each location told a story about who we were. I highlighted the area where my grandparents live. Others highlighted the running trails around Lake Hefner and the places they attended school. I had heard stories about these places, but putting them on the map gave me a new perspective. There is something about experiencing things visually that you just don’t get when you hear about them. It’s the same with the Disney map. I know where most Disney movies are located, but now I am able to compare the movies based on their location. For example, who knew that Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Pinocchio, and Tangled are all set in the same country? It blows my mind!

In a perfect world – one we’ve never known – we would never need to face the world alone,
Katie

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Where I’m From: The Roadmap

Today in class we were assigned the task of making a roadmap of where we’re from. I began with the three places I’ve lived.

This line of my life seems pretty boring to me. I know that there is much more to who I am than this simple line. So I decided to do a map of some of my favorite places I’ve traveled to.

That’s more like it! As a daughter of an airline employee, I have had the opportunity to take some amazing vacations. I have also been to some wonderful places with my church for choir tours and mission trips. These are not all the places I’ve ever been, and they’re not necessarily in order, but I have gained things from all of these trips that have become a part of who I am.

I was especially affected by my trips to Rio Bravo, Tamaulipas, Mexico. My first trip there was during my freshman year of high school, and the second one was during my senior year. My church youth group went down over Christmas Break to build houses. We also hosted a Vacation Bible School for the local children. Those kids were so loving. It didn’t matter to them where you were from or what language you spoke. Every day when we walked through the doors of the local United Methodist Church, the children would come running to us with open arms. They wanted to sit on our laps and hold our hands. I will never forget the moment when we were leaving the site on the final day, and one of the children yelled back to me, “I love you!”…in English! It was so hard to leave them, but those moments only reinforced my passion for educating young children.

Each trip on my map was very different, but they all have one thing in common: at the end, I arrived back at the same place. From the age of four, when we made the trek from Illinois to Oklahoma, Tulsa has been my home. There are not enough words to describe everything that Tulsa means to me. In the craziness that has become the roadmap of my life, it is (and always will be) the central point. I could travel all over the world, but I know that somehow I will always end up back there. It is a place full of memories, friendships, family, and faith. There’s a reason it’s called Tulsa, Okla-HOME-a.

There is no home like the one you’ve got ’cause that home belongs to you,
Katie

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My Socratic Experience

fork in the road

Life’s like a road that you travel on when there’s one day here and the next day gone,
Katie

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Down on the Corner

It’s been over a week since I last posted on my blog, but that’s because I have been so busy. On Wednesday I left OCU for the Southwestern American Choral Director’s Association (SWACDA) conference in Dallas, Texas. It was a weekend full of new information, beautiful music, and laughter, lots of laughter. I went to the conference with six other Vocal Music Education majors from OCU, and we had so much fun! I came back with so many new ideas and SO much sheet music (over 50 new pieces)! There were so many great memories, but one of the biggest highlights came on Wednesday/Thursday. Press play and read on:

On Wednesday night, our group attended the opening concert of the convention. It began with an Asian girls choir from California, a chamber choir, and Vocal Majority, an a cappella men’s group from Dallas. Then came my favorite part of the concert: Street Corner Symphony. I have been familiar with this a cappella group since they were the runners up on Season 2 of NBC’s “The Sing Off” in 2010. The concert was nothing less than amazing! They performed some of my favorite songs and even some I’d never heard before. I was in awe the entire concert. Afterwards we took pictures with the guys, bought CDs, and got their autographs. I was completely starstruck.

The next morning we attended our first workshop of the convention. It was called “Arranging for a Contemporary A Cappella Ensemble” and was presented by none other than Street Corner Symphony! I was really surprised by their presentation. They talked about basic things like harmony and vocal percussion, but they also used terms that I have learned in Music Theory this year like “oblique motion” and “parallel 5ths.” At one point they even did an improvised arrangement of a song requested by the audience. Afterwards, one of the girls in our group decided it would be a good idea to ask the guys of Street Corner Symphony out to dinner. I was way too scared to do it, but she walked right up to them. We found out that they were staying in the same hotel we were, and they agreed to go to dinner with us, using the words: “Yeah, we’d be into that.” I was shocked. I probably looked completely ridiculous when my jaw dropped to the floor as we walked away.

Long story short (well as short as possible), we met them in the hotel lobby that night, walked through downtown to a fun Mexican restaurant, and sat in our own private room in the back. We talked about anything and everything, from their lives before, during, and after the show to what we did back in Oklahoma City. It was one of the coolest experiences I’ve ever had, and it took a lot of self-control for me not to act like a starstruck little girl the whole night. It is definitely something that I will never forget. What a night!

Today’s special moments are tomorrow’s memories,
Katie

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Visual Irony

While searching for a picture of visual irony, I found a lot of obvious choices. There was an escalator leading to a gym, a New Hope Road sign posted above a Dead End sign, and a psychic fair cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances. The picture I chose was a little more subtle though (well, at least to me). At first I didn’t understand its significance, but then it basically slapped me across the face. The irony is the fact that it is a photograph. I not sure where this was taken or why there was a “no photography” sign, but obviously the photographer chose not to listen. If the rules had been followed, this photo could not exist. It’s kind of strange to think about.

You’re weird…but I like you,
Katie

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Exploration #22: People Watching

I have always been a fan of people watching. It’s fun to notice the different types of people around you and to wonder what their story is. However, I have never sat around watching someone so closely, taking detailed notes about him or her. It’s a little strange and somewhat terrifying. I mean, how would I act/dress/talk if I knew someone was going to be watching my every move?

Right now I’m in the food court of Penn Square Mall. There is an elderly man in front of me. He seems pretty content with where he is. I’m not sure if he’s waiting on someone or simply just enjoying some alone time.  He has gray hair and many wrinkles. His buttoned-down shirt is light blue with darker blue and yellow stripes running vertically down it. He is wearing a tan jacket, blue jeans, and black dress shoes. There are two band-aids on his left hand. A Styrofoam cup sits on the table in front of him. I can’t tell where it’s from, but it says “16 oz” and “Flavor Full” on it.  He just grabbed his old Nokia cell phone out of his right shirt pocket and is talking to someone about when they were going back to their “homeplace.” He hung up and is now writing on the inside of the triangular displays that sit on the table. I’m very curious as to what he is writing about. As far as I can tell, there aren’t any pictures or anything, just words, or maybe numbers. He just waved at someone across the mall, but I couldn’t tell who it was or if they even waved back. Was he really communicating with someone or was he simply being friendly? He stuck the pen in his left shirt pocket and is now attempting to fold the display back to its original form. He placed the display back on the table. As I am sitting here watching him, I can’t help but wish that he would leave soon. I just want to pick up that display to further investigate what’s inside. He continues to watch the people on the floor below as he moves his dentures in and out of his mouth. He sat up in his chair and turned around. Now I see the hearing aids in both of his ears. Is he deaf or just hard of hearing? How long has this been going on? Can he even hear the noises around him? So many questions are going through my head as I sit hear and watch him. The only problem is that I have to leave for my appointment at the Apple store.

I’m back in the food court, but now I am sitting at the table where the old man sat. I’m so curious to look inside the display. Here goes:

This was not what I was expecting to find. It’s just a bunch of math equations. What do they mean? I can’t tell if they are random or if he actually was trying to figure something out. The ones on the left all make sense. Some are missing either a few zeros or a decimal point, but mathematically they work out. The ones on the right are a little confusing to me. I mean I know how to do math, but for some reason I just can’t figure these two out.

As I sit in my dorm room looking back on my exploration, I am surprised how it ended. I knew I was going to be people watching. However, I didn’t realize I was going to be PERSON watching. I became so fascinated with this man and his actions, but I never really got any closure from it. I have no idea who that man was, why he was at the mall, or what those math equations meant. That’s what’s fun about exploring though. I get to write the story.

Trust your heart, let fate decide to guide these lives we see,
Katie

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Choosing a Quote

Dr. Hessler asked me to blog about how I choose my quotes for my blog postings, specifically the Bambi quote from my post about the OKC National Memorial. My method for choosing a quote/video clip has changed since I first began blogging. At first, I chose some of my favorite quotes. They were the more popular ones like “Hakuna Matata,” “Bippity Boppity Boo,” and “Just Keep Swimming,” and I didn’t attach any videos to them.

As I continued blogging, I realized coming up with quotes was harder than I thought it was going to be. So, I looked up a list of the top Disney quotes, followed disneywords on Twitter, and began forming a list of my favorites. As my list got longer and longer, I discovered that not everyone would know the movies that each quote came from. So I decided to start hyperlinking YouTube videos to the quotes. I also started using quotes that were more relevant to the posts (as much as possible, anyway). The toughest part came when I couldn’t find a video with the quote I wanted to use. Do I still use the quote that I want to use? Do I use a video from the movie, but without the quote? Or do I just pick a completely different quote that has a matching video? So far, I’ve chosen to only use a quote if it had a matching video, but that might change later. We’ll have to see.

As for the OKC Memorial post, this quote was one I found on the disneywords Twitter page:

“Where one thing falls, another grows…maybe not what was there before, but something new and wonderful all the same.”

It is from Bambi’s dream scene in Bambi II. I will have to admit I have never actually seen this sequel to the original movie, but when I read the quote I knew it would be perfect. It symbolizes what has happened at the site of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building since the bombing. This was probably the easiest match I’ve made so far. I haven’t been as lucky with finding quotes and videos for some of the other posts. Nevertheless, they remain my favorite part of each post.

Life’s full of tough choices, isn’t it?
Katie


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Memory Palace

When I first began the memory palace task, I found it difficult to decide on a location. I wanted to make a visual palace, so that limited my choices somewhat. I had originally decided to use my dorm room, but I couldn’t quite get it to work the way I wanted. Eventually, I settled with Downtown Tulsa, specifically the buildings on Boston Avenue.

I started at the place where Boston Avenue dead ends at 3rd Street: the Bank of Oklahoma Tower. On top of this building I placed a family representing Ethos, an appeal to the audience’s desire to trust the author. When you give your money to a bank you are trusting them, so it made sense for me to place Ethos there.

Going south down Boston Avenue, you pass Tulsa Community College. I placed a lightbulb on the building to represent Logos, an appeal to the audience’s sense of what is reasonable or logical.

As you continue to travel south, you will see a tall, beautiful Art Deco structure. This isn’t just any National Historic Landmark though. It’s Boston Avenue United Methodist Church, my home church. I have been an active member at this church for most of my life. It is where I first discovered my love for music and education, so it is only natural that I would place a heart there to represent Pathos, an appeal to the audience’s emotions.

This was an odd exercise. I struggled some at first, but once I settled on a location the rest came pretty naturally. I’m interested to see how it can apply to other topics in the future.

If watching is all you’re gonna do then you’re gonna watch your life go by without you,
Katie

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Happy Valentine’s Day

It’s that time of year again! I want to wish everyone a day full of love and chocolate…LOTS of chocolate!

The night will weave its magic spell when the one you love is near,
Katie

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