Sunday, April 29, 2012
Robert and I first met in British Literature during the first semester. He seemed a bit of a slacker and perhaps one that just needed a reality check to get his priorities in line. However, even though he was not always the best student, he still had a great sense of humor. I first got to know Robert when he taught me how to throw a football in the gym. He is also the one who has introduced me to most of the upperclassmen on campus. Robert grew up in Warrensburg, Missouri. He lived with his two parents and two sisters and brother. Robert laughs as he tells me, "Between the four of us, there was never a dull moment." Robert really looks up to his dad, which one can easily tell by looking at his future plans. Robert graduates this year and is planning on joining the military just like his dad did. He is hoping on being stationed in Kansas City, Missouri where he will work as a psychologist. Robert may not always be the best student in the classroom; however, he really is a good person with a bright future ahead. He realizes that at times he lived life in the fast lane, and he wishes that he would have slowed down every once in awhile. Although, he also believes that you have one life to live, and so you better live it. But by saying this, he still knows that living life, also means taking a step back to figure your life out.
Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Jacey is a cute and quirky girl that everyone should try to get to know. She's not one of those type of girls that tells you want you want to hear-she is going to flat out say what you need to hear. Whether it involves boys, school, or sports Jacey is the one I go to for advice. Jacey loves to wear sweat pants with her hair up, but when it is time to get dressed up: she will wear the trendiest outfit on campus. Someone she looks up to is Beyonce. I laugh when she tells me this, and she says, "No! Not just because of her curves, I mean she's got talent too! She's successful." No matter what Jacey ends up doing in life, she will be successful, there is no doubt about it. Jacey lives a few suites away from me, so I can see her porch when I leave my room. Seven out of ten times, she is sitting in her favorite chair with her homework on her lap. She constantly studies in order to maintain the 4.0 she is striving to have. Jacey and I became so close this year that we have actually decided to live together next semester. We went from being total strangers to best friends in a time span of about 7 months. She is one of those friends in life, that pushes you to be your very best. She lives her life by her favorite quote:
Good, Better, Best
Never let it rest
Until your good is better
And your better is your best.
She expects it from herself to follow this quote, but she also expects it from those around her as well.
I feel like meeting new people is all about stepping out of one's comfort zone. It involves trying new things, and making new experiences. It incorporates the idea of taking chances, and living life to the fullest. Doing this can be an adrenaline rush, and it can make a person's life happier! Check out this cool video I found about making life count!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WxfZkMm3wcg
When I first met Bongiwe, she seemed shy. I saw her on a daily basis, but it seemed like I had to really ask a lot of questions in order to get her talking. Once we became closer, I realized, that once she starts talking, you are in for a treat! Bongiwe never fails in having a story to tell! She grew up in Swaziland, which I am unfamiliar with. I love listening to her when she tells me about the culture she grew up with, and listen to her as she speaks SiSwati, French, and Zulu on the phone with her family and friends. She was raised in Swazi and ever since she can remember, her role model has been Nelson Mandella. She explains to me how he liberated South Africa, which is close to Swaziland. She says that, "I grew up being told stories of him and how he was such a hero. He spent many years in jail, and he was innocent the whole time. He did nothing but good." When she talks about her childhood, any one can see how she lights up, remembering all of her family and friends that are so far away right now. When she started school, she had mostly male friends and just a few female friends. However, society tended to look down on this, as male and female relationships were not encouraged. She laughs as she tells me the story about what she and her friends used to do. At school, they would always have to pray in the morning, before recess, and before they went home at the end of the day. There were 70 students in the small classroom. Bongiwe says that this made it easy to get away with a lot. At the end of the day, she and her friends would sneak out of the window to head home during the last prayer. She thought that she would always get away with it, but one day her sister picked her up early, and Bongiwe was no where to be found. It caused quite a bit of commotion, and her Dad punished her. Bongiwe said, "That's the last time I ever snuck out of the window!" Another time she remembers getting in trouble is when she walked with her helper to the bus stop. They left around one, but Bongiwe did not come back until 6 that night. Her mother grabbed a stick and punished her severely. Still to this day, Bongiwe sticks to her story that she was with her helper the entire time! When I read this line back to her, she corrects me. "No, not my story, but the truth." Even though Bongiwe did have her rebellious times, she still has all her priorities in the right place. She is excited to earn her college degree from Westminster, and expresses how much her education means to her. Even though Bongiwe and I have had different experiences with different environments, we still have developed a close bond in the past semester because what is new for her is not always new for me; however, it works both ways.
Monday, April 23, 2012
Imanni is one of my best friends that I have met so far at Westminster. Before coming here, I had no clue who she was, and all through freshman orientation, I just knew that she was the girl from Milwaukee. However, she is so much more than just a girl from the "414" as she refers to it. In order to know Imanni, one must know her most treasured items. That would include Hello Kitty items, her music, her pictures of family and friends, and her necklace that was given to her my her madre. Imanni has a wide range of culture throughout her family. She is jamaican, caucasian, african american, and cuban. One time we were taking a survey together, and Imanni laughed and said, "They don't have my ethnicity, so I'm just gonna put other!" Imanni is always saying things that put me in a good mood. She constantly sings jamaican songs that I have never heard of, and she obsesses over Internet shopping. One of her favorite items to purchase over the Internet is anything that is Hello Kitty. This girl has Hello Kitty outfits, earrings, pillow cases, laptop covers, posters, and backpacks. If it has Hello Kitty's name on it, then it has Imanni's name on it as well. Another trait about Imanni is her constant love for music. She has thousands of songs, and her laptop is always playing. She downloads new songs every day, and teaches me new genres of music on a weekly basis. She knows all the greatest artists, and if Bob Marley sings it, she knows it. During the summer, she usually goes to anywhere from 7 to 10 concerts, all with different genres of music. This diverse, accepting, and hyper girl, is anything but just a girl from Wisconsin.
I knew Tony from basketball, as we both played on the Varsity teams here at Westminster. This meant that we traveled together, and therefore knew each others names, but that was about it. I really got to know Tony when he came over to my suite-mate's room to work on a project. I was painting my nails and Tony came in with all of his papers. He proceeded to say, "What's good with you all?!" One thing that I learned from the start about Tony is that he is absolutely hilarious. As we are having a serious conversation about the project, he pulls a Twinkie out of his pocket. We all laughed, like "Tony! How do you have a twinkie?" He smiled and pulled out four more. Tony always is up for a good time, as one can tell by his smile. In his words, "I can make a party out of no party!" Although, Tony would not be where he is today without his momma. He says that his momma is someone that he looks up to, and he wants to raise his kids like his momma raised him. At first, I did not think that Tony and I had much in common except for the game of basketball, but I later found out that we both share the same favorite NBA players. This past year I went to Chicago to watch the Chicago Bulls play verse the Phoenix Suns, cheering on both Steve Nash and Derrick Rose. As it turns out, Tony was doing the same thing. He told me that, "Those two players are who I want to portray my game after." Tony is a guy that I can count on whenever I need a laugh or someone to rebound for me in the gym. Nobody has as big of a heart as Tony, as he proudly proclaims, "I love everybody!"
When I decided to do this project, I thought it would be a great way to meet people. However, I thought that after the conversation of getting to know them, that would be the end of it. I did not realize that I would actually form close relationships with these people. They became friends that I can rely on, vent to, or grab Taco Bell at 1 in the morning. The first person that I decided to write a story about is Kristi. Talking to Kristi was actually a dare. She was sitting at a table at the bar, with shots spilled across the scratched wood. Sitting in front of her was a notepad scribbled with writing and the Bible. The pages were filled with every imaginable highlighter color available, and she was intent on reading the Holy Word. I slid my way into the seat across from her, and said, "Hi, I'm Tylere. This probably seems weird, but I was wondering if you would answer some questions for me?" She slid her glasses off and sent a warm smile my way. I knew from right there that this was the start to a great friendship. We discussed the Bible, our beliefs, and how we both had moments where following our faith became difficult: especially in college. We talked for about 45 minutes, and as the bar was closing, we exchanged numbers. Kristi didn't hesitate to use my number, as she texted me that night inviting me to church the next morning. Ever since then we would go to church together, call each other about anything, attend Monday night study sessions, and encourage each other to stay true to our faith. Kristi was baptized last Sunday, and she will be graduating this year. It may have seemed strange that she was reading a Bible at Tiffs, but it created a friendship that will last a lifetime. When I needed someone to be there for me, God gave me Krisi.