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CAT | My passion

Nov/14

26

My Passion

Six years ago, a couple met for the first time at the South Plains Fair.

This year, I spoke with the husband and wife individually and listened to them tell me about their whirlwind romance.

Last year, I met a couple of kids from Honduras while they were in Lubbock to undergo heart procedures.

I followed their story from the day they arrived at the airport to their last day in town.

Earlier this year, I met the man behind the voice of my favorite hyena and low rider vehicle (I’ve watched too many Disney movies).

These are the kinds of stories that fuel my passion. I’m a sucker for a good feature story.

Journalism wasn’t introduced to me until late high school/early college, but my passion for writing began long before.

Letting a story – whether personal or journalism-related – flood the pages of a notebook or a computer screen feels so liberating and relieves stress. When lost in a words, it’s easy to forget when or where you are. It’s easy to become submerged in whatever you’re writing about and not realize  you already have three or four pages done when you only had to write one.

But writing is more than a hobby. It provides a form of expression for me.

I’m a generally quiet person. If I don’t know you, I’m more likely to observe than speak until we’re more acquainted (then you can’t get me to be quiet). But writing is different. Getting carried away with words is like a second nature to me, which is why journalism is a good career field for me.

I once heard journalism described as “writing with a purpose.”

I don’t need a purpose to write, but it sure helps the words flow.

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Nov/14

25

For the love of food

For as long as I can remember food has always been a love of mine.

I could eat all day if it was physically possible and socially acceptable. Though I do not necessarily have an absolute favorite, my favorite foods include pasta, tacos, pizza and chicken — particularly hot wings and chicken strips — and all kinds of desserts. Also, I’m a woman who appreciates a good sandwich. If it were possible I would make sandwiches like the old cartoons I used to watch back in the day where they piled on layers of meats, cheese, bread, lettuce, pickles and tomatoes, then topped off to perfection with an olive or two.

I’m not too big on fast food places, honestly, so if I do choose to eat out it’s probably at Subway or I’ll order the least greasiest thing on the menu elsewhere, which probably includes chicken of some sort. It’s important to me to stay fit, workout and eat healthily a majority of the time because if I don’t then I can’t eat what I want, when I want, and that’s always disappointing.

Aside from actually eating food for pleasure, I think one of the best parts about it is being able to concoct and cook homemade meals yourself. When I was growing up I was also in the kitchen looking over my mom and grandparents shoulders. Eventually they started giving me little tasks to do to help them prepare meals. As I got older, I gained more responsibility in the kitchen, and ultimately they left my siblings and I with the challenge of preparing meals. I’d have to say the pressure was on during the  holidays or birthdays when the family would give us big fancy courses from Food and Wine magazine to prepare. Nonetheless, we never failed to make something delicious, whether going off a recipe or cooking up something of our own. The biggest downside of cooking a good meal, however, is cleaning up afterward.

 

 

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Nov/14

25

Photojournalism

From the moment that man was able to capture a moment in a photograph, it has been a vital part of the media to show rather than tell.

This day in age the average American is bombarded with images that can manipulate or tell a story. While some advertising schemes can twist minds to believe they should look a certain way, or dress a certain way, other forms of this art are more “truth seeking”. While this side of highly edited photography is out there, this is not what I am interested in.

There has been a multitude of amazing images captured that show not only the ugly truth, in some cases, but can open people’s minds to what is going on outside of their own world.

Vietnam War photo

Iconic Vietnam War photo by Eddie Adams

Images like this one by Eddie Adams was taken February 1, 1968 and was captioned “General Nguyen Ngoc Loan executing a Viet Cong prisoner in Saigon”.

Images like these have done so much as define history for us today, to show us what it is like in a time where we were unable to be there ourselves. To get a glimpse into a world that might not be our own. While some images are hard to look at, it opens our eyes to truth.

 

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Nov/14

25

My Passion

Ever since I was a young girl, I have been passionate about the sport of baton twirling.

I have been twirling since I was 5 years old, therefore it has influenced me to be the person I am today. I was the Feature Twirler in my high school band, and  am now the Feature Twirler at Texas Tech. I perform during halftime with the Goin’ Band at each home football game and some away games.

When I was younger, I idolized the older twirlers and hoped to be like them one day. All along, my goal has been to twirl at a Division 1 University, specifically Texas Tech. I am from Lubbock, so I have been attending football games since I can remember. Each game, my favorite part to watch was the pregame/halftime show with the Goin’ Band, Drum Line, Feature Twirler, and Twirling Line. I was naturally drawn to the performance aspect of the whole thing. Now that I attend Tech, performing for 65,000 people during pregame and halftime still gives me that exciting rush.

Twirling has taught me hard work, dedication, perseverance, etc. I have traveled to other states and even countries to compete in national/world open competitions, so it has also taught me independence and responsibility. This sport helps define who I am as a person; it is my absolute passion.

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Nov/14

25

Being A Sorority Girl

When I was first accepted to Texas Tech, it was one of the happiest days of my life. The second, was the day I received my Big Card from my sorority, Delta Gamma. I will never forget the moment I realized I was apart of something more than just myself, something where I would finally have sisters and a home away from my home.

I currently work for a women who was also a Delta Gamma here at Tech and it has been amazing. Its all DG all the time. She is basically my second mom. My parents were skeptical of me joining a sorority at the beginning but they knew I needed a place to call my own, so they let me participate in recruitment.

I don’t think they ever thought I would fallen love with the community and be so actively involved. While some people are in organizations just take up space on a resume, I am in it for the love and sisterhood.  I look forward to chapter meetings on monday and getting to get ready with my sisters on game days.

People always comment back home on how my parents are paying for my friends because they don’t see what I see. They don’t see the philanthropy hours that we put in, they don’t see the sisterhood events, chapter retreats, and the nights we spend together at the lodge pulling all nighters for class. I am that sorority girl, and  love it.

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Nov/14

25

My cats mean more to me than most people

When I was seven years old, I was allowed to adopt my first pet. I got a black and white cat named Cuddles. She quickly became my best friend. She would sleep with me every night, and even wait at the school bus stop to walk me home. When I left for my freshman year of college, it was my first year sleeping without her. At the end of my freshman year, my dad tragically passed away.

While I was in Florida for my dad’s funeral, my aunt found a kitten on the second floor of her apartment complex. My sister and I had been hoping our mom would allow us to get a new pet for our apartment the next year, because Cuddles was too old and sick to move to Lubbock. The kitten was black and white just like Cuddles and we named her Isis. Isis brought a young and spunky energy to our family when everything around us seemed to be sick and dying. She filled a void that we were all feeling and brought us happiness during the worst time of our lives.

Isis is a beautiful cat who has never grown bigger than seven pounds. She is best friends with our dogs at home and our roommate’s cat Onyx, not to mention anyone who gives her attention. I wouldn’t call myself a crazy cat lady, only because I don’t think I’m crazy, but I truly do love my cats.

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Nov/14

25

Live sports

Most people who see the sports world from the outside on TV have no idea the time and preparation it takes to bring them that coverage. It starts almost six months ahead when ESPN or Fox Sports begins to staff the hundreds of games they are set to broadcast. The day before a game is when the hard work begins. A crew of about 50 people show up to the stadium where the event is to take place to begin setting up the cables, cameras, audio, and the TV truck. This day usually takes about eight hours to make sure everything is working for the next day. On the actual game day, the crew arrives six hours before the game is set to begin to insure nothing has changed from the night before. As soon as the cameras go live there is no greater feeling than knowing all the hard work from the past two days is for this moment. The craziness of live sports is one thing I love. You can never except what might happen. In football it may be a game winning touchdown pass with one minute left to beat the number one ranked team in the country. In basketball it could be a buzzer beater, or a coach who is upset with a bad call and throws a chair. Once the game has ended and all the fans head home or to where ever it is they might be going, that is when the hard work begins again for the crew. The crew stays after the game for another two or more hours tearing down all the cables, cameras, and any other things that they have used. The passion I have for this feeling is something I live for. There is no greater feeling than knowing you are the reason sports fans all over the world are able to watch their favorite team.

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Nov/14

25

Independence and the world as we know it

Ever since I can remember I have been fiercely independent. From never asking my parents to help me with my homework as a child, to despising group projects since I have been in school, I like to do things by myself (for the most part.)
While my independence is on a smaller scale, I am passionate about the desire for independence shown by people in countries with less representation than my own.

Watching Tahrir Square in 2011 and the people standing up for what they believe in was breathtaking for me. While some carried out violent acts that I do not agree with, all united in the name of standing up for the injustices they saw in the governmental system present in their country.

It is this love for independence and the human nature of political structures that inspired me to be a journalist. I want to tell the stories of those who are fighting for their freedom. I want to show the world that fighting for what you believe in, be it voting rights, a specific politician or the desire to bring kidnapped girls back to their home country, I want to be able to show people that standing up and fighting for what you believe in is not inappropriate nor uncalled for but something needed for society to continue in such a way that gives everyone a voice.

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Nov/14

25

Growing up Gonzales

I may have only grown up in a family of six, but most of the time it felt as if there were twelve. My parents are the sweetest, most hardworking people I know. We have never had a wealth of money, but my parents have always managed to get my siblings and I what we need and want. My older brother, Josh, is twenty-five and currently a Texas Tech student as well. We have always been close growing up and he has always been one of my best friends, even when he drives me crazy most of the time. Josh and I have two younger siblings, Dane, our fifteen-year-old brother and Delaney, our fourteen-year-old sister. Before they were born, Josh and I did everything together; somehow he managed to put up with me following him everywhere. Dane and Delaney were the sweetest, most precious babies I had ever seen. I would always want to be near them and hold them and feed them. I would even wake them up during their nap just so I could hold them. My parents said they really appreciated the time and effort I put into spending with my siblings, but now I may regret always being near them. My little sister is always stuck to me like glue when we are together. It can get a little annoying sometimes, but is that not what sisters are supposed to do? My siblings and my parents are my best friends. Throughout my life, I have not found any one I can be as close to and secure in a relationship as I am with the members of my family. We hold our Christian values and beliefs close and we always try to spend as much time together as possible. We eat all our meals together, especially when Josh and I visit from college. We all have a love for sports and a close bond between each other since our dad coached each of our sports teams growing up and my dad and I have always had a bond with football and softball.

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Nov/13

27

Traveling every chance I get

As soon as I was born, I started traveling. My mom would travel for work and she would take me with her. When my parents divorced, I started flying across the country by myself to visit him and his family. I used to love airplanes and the thought of flying thrilled me, but as I’ve gotten older the destination is what I love. I went to Europe when I was 18 and I fell in love with the different cultures. I keep waiting for the day I can go back. I would love to work internationally one day so that I can live in Europe. Besides Europe, I’ve traveled all over the United States and I’ve been to Mexico and Canada. I haven’t had a chance to go to South America, but I hope that the opportunity arises someday soon.

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