What is a Lemon?

OML: The Oh My Lemon Conspiracy

First of all, a lemon is a fruit. They are used in the culinary arts. Chefs include them in appetizers, main courses, desserts, and beverages. Why exactly are they everywhere? The taste? The color? What exactly is the lemon? Our group conspired a theory that may change everyone’s view about this simple, yellow fruit.

The lemon is yellow, which means it has the color of happiness. It is simple yet complex. What other item, person, or idea matches this description? Christianity. It may sound far-fetched, but stop… breath… and think about it as this article and the other pages explain. It took God seven days to create the earth, heavens, ocean, and life forms. On the last day God needed to rest because of fatigue. What can help with fatigue? Among doing research, citrus fruits are great with fatigue problems. Lemons are right under that category. Ever heard of vitamin…

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Back in 2011 and 2012 the old ranching couple, Doris and Philip Smith, faced difficulties as an intense drought settled upon their humble ranch in Panhandle Texas. Having been ranchers for most of their lives, at 73 years old, Doris comments that she’ seen droughts, but “never like this before.” Having gone on for too long and too intensely, the humble couple ended up selling off much of their cattle to stay in business. There simply was not enough rain to support them, so they had to make sacrifices. A drought of near biblical proportion plagued Texas, and with it came the dust storms, fire, and wind. The land was decimated. Five inch cracks across the field where the Smiths would grow wheat. The ranch declined, and slowly they had to depend on other places to survive. Buying wheat to feed the cattle from faraway sources, too the whole neighborhood coming together to try and support themselves. The Smiths, surprisingly, kept in good spirits. Not letting the drought bring them down, they managed to joke about their situation and stay positive. Even if it was the worst drought they had scene, they knew it wouldn’t be their last.

 “The farmer always looks to the next year”-Doris Philip

Droughts, nowadays, are common. With the changing climate many places in the world have been afflicted by unusual severe weather. Droughts, however, are especially detrimental to ecosystems and civilization. Instead of being destructive, short-lived forces of nature, droughts sap away at the life of an area before draining it away completely. I can imagine, that it would be difficult for some people to comprehend the damage done by drought when tornadoes and hurricanes do so much more visible damage. Today, America still suffers profuse effects of drought. For example, California is very much suffering, even if the recent rains have quelled it a bit.

“Approximately 20 percent of teens will experience depression before they reach adulthood.”-Teen Depression Information

Much like a drought, depression saps away at life. Slowly overtime it begins to creep into the bones of the person and drains their life away. Similar to how certain areas are more susceptible to drought, who is more susceptible to depression? The youth of America are common sufferers of this disease. A bleak life, lack of energy, everything seems to be barren and dead to teenage sufferers. No matter what, it’s impossible to do what you want, let alone what you need to do. Falling deeper and deeper into a pit until the point where self destruction becomes pleasure, those are the feelings of a depressed teenager. Yet, the general population doesn’t notice this. Because like a drought, the effects of depression don’t happen all at once in a grand scene where everyone can see and be entertained and give their false condolences. Depression is unseen, and happens over time. It can’t be fixed all at once, and the effects are cumulative. As such, they can’t be fixed by one session of therapy. A drought can’t be fixed by one day of rain. This is what the teens are dealing with, and yet no one bats an eye when they cry out. The people who are supposed to help never really try.


To deal with a drought cities often have to rely on outside sources of water. The greenery dies, and pools drain in order to cut back on water. Sacrifices have to be made, and the best anyone can do is conserve and rely on the support given to the city. The only true cure for a drought is time. Only in time will the water be replenished. Though, sometimes this doesn’t happen. Like a drought, people with depression have to rely on outside resources to get better. They have to use up all of their reserve energy or try to conserve the last bits of motivation they have. Depression can only be solved with time and proper support. That’s why I think it is important to put more effort in improving the “resources” or self-help programs available to depressed teens. They shouldn’t be demonized or ridiculed. People don’t ridicule ranchers who suffer in droughts. Time and effort can bring a lot of change.

Now what? What you should get out of this is that problems that don’t happen in grand ways often don’t get recognition. It seems that things that aren’t grand don’t catch the eye of humanity enough to be deemed important. These unknown problems, depression in teens and the somewhat ignored drought in California, seem to grow up into massive disasters. They are left to fester and develop into uncontrollable issues that no one saw coming. So, my advice for you is to keep you eye out for the little problems. What happens over time can be the most dangerous.

Playing Where No Man Has Played Before: Global School Play Day Gives Students And Teachers A Much Needed Reminder

Nowadays kids aren’t living like they used to fifty or even twenty years ago. Life just isn’t the same, and things change as society develops and everything gets more complicated. Namely, the parents and the education system’s priorities have changed. Having done away with the ways of old, kids spend much more time focusing on school than enjoying themselves. As made blatantly clear in a video by Tedx Talks, this shift has caused a problem in the current generations. In the video Peter Gray highlights the fact that depression rates and suicide rates for children and teens is on the rise, and has been for the past sixty years. Can you see what I’m getting at?

.                                                                             as

.                                                            rise                             play

.                                   will                                                                            continues to

Unhappiness                                                                                                                                       decline.


We are lacking emphasis on vital aspects of childhood and growth, and now the results of this are clear. The kids are suffering, and as someone who has experienced anxiety and depression as a young adult, I know this can not be ignored. Luckily, some amazing people have taken the time to make an effort for the better. Global School Play Day was created in order to remind us to take some time to just play. One period dedicated solely to giving students a chance to play as they please? Man, I’ll take it! Teachers are taking a day off of instruction and allowing their students to have free play for the whole class period. The only rule is that no electronics are allowed, but other than that students are free to do whatever they want.

“…With recess getting shorter and shorter, us teachers noticed those kids don’t know how to play together. They lack those social skills.”- Urteaga

My time during Global School Play Day consisted of struggling to play a card game I brought in that I’d wanted to try for a while, but never had anyone to play with. That idea went down the drain fast, leaving my two friends and me to play with Play-Dough. Not having to talk much, we just sat there doing as we pleased and listening to the voices of our peers as they enjoyed themselves inside and outside of the classroom. It felt just like my elementary school days were back as I recalled all the times I’d sat on the floor with twenty or so other first graders, lost in the warm haze of youth. Going outside probably would have been much more fun, since some kid brought out a volleyball, or even playing sorry would have been a good idea. Regretfully, it’s only now that I realize playing is much more fun when done in large groups, when looking back on my lackluster trio of quiet peers.



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Even more so, compared to my childhood memories, it seems like I’ve lost the ability to play.  Cut short by the all-too-common family crisis and unstoppable force that is school, my time of carefree play and experience was limited more than others. The way I feel now, I realize, would not be the same had I the chance to grow up with the ability to play as much as others. Living a life riddled with anxiety, social awkwardness, and drowning in a sea of melancholy, I fear for others who have to grow up in the same way I did. Truly, it’s time for change. Going about this should be done right, however, and teachers should work on improving the impact of this day for students.
Perhaps in the future we could make this even school wide, and have it last all day. I saw this because having it limited to only certain classes at a time doesn’t allow students to fully enjoy their time, especially if they don’t know anyone well essentially making their day of play a wasted effort. Additionally, I believe that making it last all day would have a bigger impact on the students. Sure, students get away with free periods all the time, but dedicating a whole day to play makes it seem like education system is really motivated to spread awareness and change the lives of students. Also, teachers could suggest even more memorable and outrageous ideas to their students in advance to allow for further preparation. If I had more time I would have gone all out and broken out the cotton candy machine and it would have been lit. With some more pushing, I believe Global School Play Day can become even more successful. The experiences we, as humans, have as children and young adults shape us into who we are as adults, so it’s only right to give younger generations what they need to succeed in life, after all, isn’t that the purpose of school?









When Ignorance Isn’t Bliss: A Look Into A Key Factor Of Slavery

    For as long as man has experienced greed, slavery has been there to accompany it. This unshakable atrocity of humanity’s creation, even now, presents itself to the common man. As morally unacceptable as it is, modern slavery runs strong despite the actions taken by organizations and governments to bring it to an end. It’s not impossible to see trends in slavery throughout history. Ignorance is one of the key factors in slavery. How much of an impact does ignorance have on slavery’s longstanding existence, and what does ignorance’s role in slavery say about society as a whole?

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    To keep a slave controlled one must keep them ignorant. Frederick Douglass’ story revolves around keeping slaves ignorant, hence why his journey to literacy is so important. They must not want, or know too muchcomplacency is key. It breaks the spirit, and maintains order for slave owners. Were a slave to gain too much knowledge and become aware of his circumstance “He would at once become unmanageable, and of no value to his master” (Douglass 42). The slave holders were afraid of what a slave, no longer blinded by his ignorance, could do. As a society, the people who take the most power and control tend to be the most terrified of those below them rising up. For example, Trump’s administration banned the Badlands from divulging any information to the public about the state of the environment. In an act of resistance they shared out as much information as possible to warn the people before having it promptly taken down. One must wonder if those in power really hold power, or if they are leading people, drugged by their lack of knowledge, on by a thin leash and waiting in fear for when and if they bite back. Or better yet, how does our society manage to stay intact with such flimsy certainty placed on positions of power?


The grave stone of Lewis Porter that lacks a birth date.

“The white children could tell their ages. I could not tell why I ought to be deprived of the same privilege.” (Douglass 1).


     Similarly to the ignorance of black slaves, modern day slaves get much of the same treatment. People are often tricked into slavery before being shipped off to a country where they can’t speak the language, resulting in them being completely helpless upon arrival. A first person account of Hai’s story goes along this line almost exactly. Hai was tricked into slavery and forced to work in a basement where her captor “Threatened that if [she] left the house, the police would arrest [her] and beat [her].” She couldn’t speak the language, nor could she tell if the police would actually beat her or help her if she were to escape because of her captor’s words. She was trapped in ignorance, and therefore worked in fear of what might happen if she tried to help herself. What’s more, when she did eventually escape Hai mentions that her lawyer “Advised [her] to plead guilty and [she] was sentenced to 24 months in an adult’s’ prison.” Helpless, she did the only thing she knew she could and accepted her fate. Her captor employed the most successful method of keeping a slave behaved: leaving her ignorant of any chance to escape, and devoid of any hope for help.

     As soon as a slave does gain knowledge, they pose a threat to the slave holder. With knowledge, they know to fight back, and the thought of being contended by someone so low strikes fear into the heart of the oppressor. As seen in the Dred Scott Case. Scott’s master passed away, and so he sued for his freedom. A slave with knowledge enough to do this was obviously a problem for slaveholders. Scott’s second, and successful, attempt at a trial was overturned, justified by Roger B. Taney that the descendants of slaves had “No rights which the white man was bound to respect.” To defend their position the supreme court went so far as to overturn the initial hearing, and essentially cause more problems for themselves by encroaching upon the state’s right’s. Scott wasn’t ignorant. He knew what he could do and did his best, but even so his knowledge or correctness couldn’t save him from oppression. People in power know they have to keep the will and knowledge of the people low, lest something like this happen again. As a society, we often find that those with knowledge to stand up to controversial decisions by people in power, are often shot down while the rest of society looks on. These types of altercations are kept quiet or downplayed, so as to not raise suspicion or any more questioning. Once again, the people in power seem to be afraid of what those below them can do, resulting in their hiding behind ignorance. How can the human race be so daring and obtuse to let these leaders hang on to power even when those leaders depend solely on the cooperation of the people?

     Moreover, not only are slaves kept in ignorance to maintain their obedience, the general population is kept blind to the facts of slavery. In order to stop something, one must have knowledge of the problem to make an effort in stopping it. Our modern society possesses a surprisingly insufficient amount of solid knowledge on modern slavery. McGough, in her article on modern day slavery, highlights that fact that attempts to end slavery are mostly ineffective, for “Without accurate estimates of the prevalence of human trafficking, it can be difficult to know how to allocate resources to study the issue.” Slave traffickers expertly cover their tracks, and government investigations do a poor job of trying to catch them. They currently don’t have a way of catching slavers effectively, due to messy organization and lack of knowledge for the people who need it. Thus, slavery still thrives and the modern society is left without much choice because of the lack of information and general ignorance of the people. In this case, the ignorance of the people reflects the running idea that humans are truly altruistic creatures through and through even at the expense of others. Most people wouldn’t take the time to be concerned over slave trafficking, let alone bother to learn more about it and how they can help. Infuriating as it is, it is the harsh reality we are presented with.

Has ignorance played a part in the survival of slavery? Yes, without a doubt it has been a key role in the managing of slaves and the large amount of slave trade going on even today. In regards to what this says about our society, it most prominently stands out that power is usually placed in the hands of the week and barely stays there. We are all influenced by ignorance to let that power remain in the hands of unfits people when true control is in the hands of the masses. Just as the slaves were left dumb in complacency, modern slaves and even some societies run similarly. Be it through complacency, fear, oppression, or altruistic values the deliberate use of ignorance in our history has largely contributed to slavery’s survival. However, for as long as man can maintain a defiant sense of justice, surely change will be there to accompany it.


When You Fall, It’s Time to Get Up Again

This past weekend I went out and tried something entirely new. Being inspired to try ice skating by a certain incredibly popular anime, I’ve bought tickets to go last Saturday.  Having never skated before in y life, I went into the rink clueless.

My friends and I timidly stepped onto the ice and tried to get the hang of skating. Me, being not intimidated by falling, attempted going as fast as possible right away. You may have guessed it already, but I fell… A lot.


My knees paid the price. Can’t gain anything thing without giving something up, right?

My friends hung onto the railing for the majority of the two hours spent at the rink and didn’t gain much experience. I, on the other hand, threw caution to the wind and tried to skate like a pro. I may have fallen more than fifteen times, but it was worth to. Why didn’t my friends improve on skating as quickly as I did in our short two hours and having started at the same basic skill level? They hung onto the guards, didn’t take risks, and played it safe. I let what was going to happen happen and went for the goal.

This is a lot like learning new things, more specifically how to improve writing. Last week, too, my whole English class to blindly write a practice AP test essay. Admittedly we all did pretty horribly, missing the point of the essays completely. Our writing skills are good, but we didn’t know what the test was looking to get from us. We spent the rest of the week learning from our mistakes and gaining knowledge. Even though we “fell” we now have to get up and try again to improve ourselves. I’ve found the best way to improve is to just go for the goal, and learn from every mistake along the way. Falling may be painful, I’m certainly still in pain, but in the end it is the most beneficial.

Not-so-Blissful Ignorance

Anosognosia or the Dunning-Kruger effect is quite the puzzle. Originally used as a term for a severe mental illness, it has been adapted to describe a common problem we all face. Characterized as not possessing the ability to tell when your wrong due to your own lack of knowledge, this problem is faced by the entire human race.


Now is the time to wonder, ” How can we avoid this? Is there any way to get around this problem for the average person?” We all posses varying levels of knowledge, and using this we can help each other. Keeping critical people around you, no matter how bitter they may be, is a good way to do it. Being open to criticism and other’s ideas and opinions is a huge part of evolving as a person. Going even further, we come across a harder to answer question. How can we help large crowds afflicted by it? As you can see here, Devega of Salon proposes the idea that those who support Trump don’t know see how he is wrong because they are so deluded. I do not wish to make fun of, or play favorites, I just though this was a good example. It really focuses on the idea of society possible being brainwashed or convinced that something is right, so much so that no one can see they are wrong.

Personally, I enjoy this subject. It really makes my most valued trait of Amenability  seem even more important. To be able to take in criticism and the opinions of others is truly the best way to level up as a person, in my opinion.

Seasons Changing

In life, Seasons, like humans change over and over. Every year, like clock work. People changes, and it is to be accepted. We’re all exceptionally different, and take thing differently. Somethings aren’t meant for some people, so we all take different paths in life. “So, why does everyone want to be the same: popular, pretty, successful?” I would assume, it’s the fault of the media and our nature to want to be accepted. But, we are too blinded by this to realize all the successful people are not average.