Celebrities to Close the Lens on Instagram’s New Privacy Policy

Users are outraged all over the nation about Instagram’s new privacy policy, and my first thought was, “Why do I care?” Yes, it  seems sketchy and unreliable, but this new policy has no affect on me. Instagram has been trending on Twitter for the past two days from what I thought was the battle between the two services. I heard it’s another Netflix scandal (and yes my family took part in that), but…

Little did I know…

Celebrities can’t risk having their pictures sold, so they are deleting their accounts and flocking to similar services like Flickr. As a pop culture addict, being invested in this demographic is a part of my life (sounds pathetic), and if they are ditching Instagram so should I. However, Twitter’s new photo filters don’t satisfy me. While other services can’t replace my love for Instagram’s Lo-Fi, Hefe and Early Bird, I need to stay updated in the entertainment world.

One problem: building a following is tough, especially with so many social platforms. Half of my followers don’t catch on to trends until the entire population has heard of them. Even so, where is the time to manage Facebook, Twitter, Keek, Instagram and a new picture site.

I value what Instagram has brought to the social world, but with everything comes change.
-Note to Instagram: Keep your users happy.

R.I.P. Camp Cowboy

North shore of Lake Carl Blackwell lies a camp that bubbles excitement inside of me. Camp Cowboy.

It’s a weekend for incoming freshman filled with tradition, bonding and ORANGE POWER. Small group time gives campers a chance to interact with current students (counselors) and teachers. They learn about housing, classes, life on campus and things every freshman should learn before stepping foot on campus for their first day. Campers also climb a ropes course, slip-n-slide during water olympics and become a true cowboy while getting a visit from Pistol Pete at the late night campfire. I was a camper myself, and I have counseled every summer since then. My favorite part is always the musical chair version of Never Have I Ever and the strobe light dance at the lodge. My emotional attachment to this place can’t be described on paper.

Being a camper taught me the importance of building relationships and investing myself into something bigger than me. I met some of my best friends at camp, and my transition into college was much easier with the useful information I learned (like not carrying my schedule around on the first day or taking the big steps into Morrill hall). Knowing that I had more than three friends was a plus. Now as a counselor, I try to create the same experience for my campers.

This past weekend was my last at Camp Cowboy. Part of me wanted to cry the entire time, but the other part wanted to remember every small detail (like the curiosity of the campers and the enjoyment I get when they ask questions that I remember wondering at their age). It’s a blessing to be passing on the OSU tradition, but this past week it was bittersweet. Their OSU experience is just beginning and mine is coming to an end.

Here is a picture of me, my co-counselor Clay and our campers!

Camp Cowboy, you will be missed.

Fighting Vainly the Old Ennui

Is being bored really such a bad thing?

My entire life, boredom has always been the death of me. If I’m not learning something new or on some great adventure, I’m bored… and it drives me CRAZY!!!

I started this summer thinking it was going to be a long one, with all my friends traveling and “experiencing life”… leaving me behind. But through my boredom, I realized I don’t have to be somewhere extravagant to experience life. In a way, ennui (French term) is bringing out the best in me. I’m learning about myself, my health and my happiness.

As Buddha said, “Happiness does not depend on what you have or who you are, it solely relies on what you think.”

I’ve attempted to live off of these words recently, and I can say they are really rubbing off on me! Naturally, there are certain things that I think negatively about, but I catch myself optimistically (is that a word?) changing my mindset. I have even been eating healthier and working out, not because I’m forcing myself (although I still have those days) but because I see the beauty and importance in life, so why not supplement my body with the love (and nutrients) it needs. 😉

All I’m saying is, the result of being bored is me learning to create something out of nothing. To appreciate life in the present (I’ve been known to live in the future). To not be jealous of other people’s lives and simply live mine.

But here is the true question. If the definition of boredom is “an emotional state experienced when an individual is left without anything in particular to do, and is not interested in their surroundings,” am I truly considered bored if I’m interested in learning all of these things and applying them to my “surroundings?”

Who knows? … Just something to simmer on.