’13 Reasons Why’ addresses teen issues


Netflix released its new original series “13 Reasons Why” last Friday and, yes, I binge-watched it. The series is based on the best-selling book by Jay Asher, which follows around Clay Jensen and his quest to uncover the truth about why his friend and crush, Hannah Baker, committed suicide.

The series starts off with Clay coming home to a mysterious box with his name on it. Inside the box, are cassette tapes recorded by Hannah leaving detailed stories dedicated to specific people about why she decided to take her life. If you haven’t watched it yet, I highly recommend that you do. It’s a great show and will definitely pull at your heart strings with its intense emotional content.

Personally, I think this series is great and I’m glad it’s generating a lot of buzz because it sheds a lot of light about the issues teenagers deal with everyday in high school. It gives you a real portrayal of how high school can be for some students. It shows just how bad things can get between bullying, friendships that end in betrayal, rumors, and loneliness. Basically all things that pushed Hannah to take her own life.

If you have a heart and soul, than you can definitely empathize with Hannah Baker’s tragic decision, and Clay’s need to try to make things right for her even though it is already too late.

This story shows that each of us need to hold ourselves accountable to being a good person, because we never know what a person is going through or how much they can take. I don’t want to give away anything for those who haven’t watched it, but this story can definitely serve as a fictional cautionary tale about why we need to treat others with kindness and respect.

Scary clowns? Go see ‘It’ this fall


Fun fact about me: I am terrified of clowns. Now half of you are probably thinking something like, “wow, scared of clowns, such a cliché”, while the other half of you are probably thinking something like “wow, me too, girl.”

But I do know you are all thinking, “How bad is the fear and where does it come from?”

Well, first off, it’s not anything crazy, just like “send chills down your spine / can you hold my hand please?” type of fear. Second, it comes from Stephen King’s “It,” the movie, released in 1990.

Those of you have seen the movie know exactly where I’m coming from and know where this post is going. (Side note: if you haven’t watched it, make it a point to, it’s a great movie even though I’m scarred for life from it).

There’s an It remake coming out this fall. Yes, a remake if you haven’t watched the trailer yet here’s the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PN8il_zxNWM.

Just from the trailer you get the same creepy vibes and see some iconic scenes from the original which is great. I’m definitely excited to see this movie because (1) I love scary movies and (2) I’m expecting the movie will scare me enough to question why I would even dare put myself through the torture (in a good way) of watching the remake. I’m also glad this first trailer doesn’t give us a very long look at Pennywise the Dancing Clown, because it gives us more to look forward to when It finally premieres in theaters.

The remake will star Bill Skarsgard, who will be playing the clown in addition to “Stranger Things” actor Finn Wolfhard and “Midnight Special” actor Jaeden Lieberher. Directing the film will be Andres Muschetti and it will apparently be the first part in the two-part film series.

In the first part, Muschetti will be showing the audience Pennywise’s intentions he has in store for the Derry and the Loser club (the main kids in the story). So make sure you guys add this movie to your “must watch” list of movies, and don’t worry you have plenty of time to prepare yourself for the terror because it releases on Sept. 8, 2017.

Drake releases ‘More Life’


If you’re a Drake fan like myself, then you know how great this week has been because he finally dropped his album, “More Life.” The internet was buzzing with the release because this album is following “Views,” which was probably his biggest project before this one.

“More Life” features other rap artist like 2 Chainz, Young Thug, Quavo, Travis Scott and Kanye West (which gave us a little of the old Kanye back in my opinion). Most of Drake’s albums have a theme or fit together as narrative piece of his life stories. This album did not follow that same outline. However, a lack of structure is what made “More Life” so great.

While listening to this album, I realized the songs ranged in genre, era, culture and slang, which make it a blast to listen to whether you have work to get done or you’re just vibing with friends.

Drake’s idea to make such a wide range of music shows that he is in-tune with what is going on around him and what everyone is doing musically. It’s clear the Drake veered away from commercial rap, pop, and R&B styles, but this just shows his growth as an artist and his confidence level in himself.

He’s making music that he wants, the way he wants, without the fear of losing his “Top 2” status. This may not be his best album or even a classic, but this just shows Drake evolving into his true 6 God status and that’s accomplishment enough.

International Women’s Day celebrated


International Women’s Day is an annual commemoration of the women’s rights movement, that takes place every year on March 8. This year, women had many ways in which they celebrated.

Many women used it as a day of protest, to show why women are important in the world. They used it as a day of praise, to take the time to thank and lift each other up. They used it as a day to hold everyone, including themselves, accountable for the way women are treated in today’s society.

This International Women’s Day called for women to wear the color red. Why red? Wearing red was promoted by the same people who organized the Women’s March on Washington. They stated that they chose the color red for their new campaign because they see it as a “power” color and because it represents “revolutionary love and sacrifice”. The color is a “call to action” for human rights and justice, but to also raise awareness to the women’s right movement.

Many celebrities and politicians took to social media to show their support in the campaign including Salma Hayek, Kerry Washington, Emma Watson, Ellen DeGeneres and Hillary Clinton. Men like Mario Lopez, LeBron James, Jared Leto, and Pharrell Williams decided to join in on the movement and show their support for women.

With everything going on in our nation and around the world, Wednesday showed that the world is still full of people who want to show, give and receive love. It was a beautiful reminder why we must continue to fight the good fight.

Superfoods can boost your mood


As the semester progresses, the more you feel like you’re falling into a pit of stress, homework, and no sleep.

And how do we feel when we’re stressed, have too much homework, and not enough sleep? We feel like crap. I don’t know about you guys, but I have a problem with stress eating, so I looked up natural ways to boost your mood besides exercise and “superfoods” came up.

Turns out, that food plays a crucial role not only in our physical health but our mental health too. So it’s best to keep in mind, that yeah it’s easy to go to the nearest fast food restaurant and indulge on the fatty “goodness,” but going that extra mile to get something healthy will leave your body healthy and you feeling happy.

Here are my three favorites:

1. Yogurt
Research shows that yogurt can increase the levels of serotonin that your body produces. Serotonin is the neurotransmitter that helps boost your mood and fight off bouts of depression. Interesting enough, serotonin is actually found in the gut area and yogurt helps improve gut health by reducing inflammation in the body.

2. Green Tea
Green tea contains a compound called theanine, which is an amino acid that helps relax muscles and reduce stress. The catechin polyphenols in the tea also help monitor inflammation levels in the entire body. My favorite thing about green tea is how it naturally increases your metabolism and your energy in a natural and safe way.

3. Dark Chocolate
If you enjoy dark chocolate, in small doses, it can act as a mood booster and at the same improving your brain’s cognition by increasing the blood flow with flavonols which are found in dark cocoa. This treat also decreases the stress hormone, cortisol, and helps cut down pro-inflammatory markers. Now how much dark chocolate is the right amount to do all of this? 1.4 ounces of dark chocolate 70 percent or higher is the recommended daily amount.

Trump rescinding transgender policy


If you haven’t heard, President Trump’s administration announced on Wednesday that it would be rescinding a portion of Title IX, which was issued by the Obama Administration last May, to protect transgender students against discrimination.

According to the Trump Administration, the reason for the rescission was because the Obama-era protection did provide “extensive legal consent” with its positioning in Title IX.

A statement made by the White House said that “As President Trump has clearly stated, he believes policy regarding transgender bathrooms should be decided at the state level, the joint decision made today by the Department of Justice and the Department of Education returning power to the states paves the way for an open and inclusive process to take place at the local level with input from parents, students, teachers and administrators.”

However the Department of Education’s Secretary, Betsy DeVos, did not agree with the decision. DeVos was reportedly “pushed” by both of the departments to signing off on rescinding the policy because they had already decided to move forward.

However, she made a statement agreeing that protecting all students, no matter what gender they identify with or sexuality is a key priority for every school in America, but best solved at the state and local levels.

This is a very easy subject to have mixed views on, and everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but at the same time everyone is entitled to equal respect and a country that is going fight to keep them safe no matter how they choose to live their lives.

As we plunge further into “Trump’s America,” we need to remember that it is important that we continue to fight the good fight in the most peaceful way possible. What has happened in the past few weeks has set the tone for what will be going on for the next four years, but it is no reason to get discouraged about all the progress we have already made. It’s just time for us to become stronger and stick together like never before to protect those who are not being protected by the system as they should be protected.

Apple cider vinegar boosts health


If you are currently a college student, or ever were a college student, you understand the struggle of getting sick at the most inconvenient times. Like right before mid-term week. Well, I’m going to give you my simple secret that keeps my immune system in tip-top condition and from getting he “bug” that’s going around your school.

What is the secret you ask? Bragg’s organic, raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar that has the “mother.” You’re probably thinking to yourself “that’s it?” Yes that’s it. Let me explain to you a few reason why this is such a potent health tonic:

1. Maintains Body Alkaline pH Level — It helps your body maintain a healthy alkaline pH level, which will naturally keep your energy levels up and fight off illnesses and diseases by working with the enzymes and chemical reactions in your body to keep everything functioning at the right acidity or alkalinity.

2. Improves Heart Health — Because ACV lowers your blood pressure, it lessens your risk of heart disease and increases your levels of good cholesterol in your system by controlling triglycerides. It is also believed to contain chlorogenic acid which is an antioxidant that has scientifically shown to protect cholesterol particles from becoming oxidized which is very important in protecting yourself from heart disease.

3. Promotes Healthy Detoxification of Liver and Other Organs — This is especially important if you love to party or even just chill and drink with friends frequently. The ACV works with your body to help stimulate circulation in the skin and blood by helping to remove harmful environmental toxins that build up in your body. It helps your body break up mucus, cleanse the lymph nodes, which allows for better lymph circulation. Better lymph circulation means your lymphatic system has a chance to remove toxic cells and improve your immune system response to any intruders.

Now that is only a few things apple cider vinegar does for you, but there are numerous benefits and all you have to do is add one to two tablespoons of it in a glass of water and drink that mixture once a day. Make sure the ACV that you buy is raw, unfiltered and contains the “mother.” The “mother” is a protein enzyme and it’ll make the ACV look murky but it is exactly what you need to change your health for the better.

Super Bowl Ads send a message


If you watched the 2017 Super Bowl LI, then you probably saw how some of the Super Bowl commercials took a political stance. It’s clear that President Trump’s policies and his overall views on politics, sparked ideas for many big-name companies to show which side they stand on.

Audi used its 60-second commercial spot to speak about gender equality. Starting the commercial off with the words “What will I tell my daughter?” with an image of the narrator’s daughter in a soap-box car race.

The commercial continues on with the young girl racing against boys and her “dad” doing the voiceover asking questions like “Do I tell her despite her education, her drive, her skills, her intelligence, she will automatically be valued as less than every man she ever meets?”, to bring up key issues with gender equal in America.

The commercial then ends with him saying “or maybe I’ll be able to tell her something different” and Audi stating their stance on equal pay by letting viewers know that “Audi of America is committed to equal pay for equal work.”

Airbnb decided to highlight Trump’s anti-immigration ban and show that they are against it. The commercial shows the faces of real human beings of different gender, race, sexuality, and religion with the words “We believe no matter who you are, where you’re from, who you love or who you worship, we all belong. The world is more beautiful when you accept.” When Airbnb originally purchased its ad-spot, it had a different concept in mind. But because of Donald Trump’s travel ban, they were inspired to take a stance and send the message “We Accept” to everyone watching the Super Bowl LI.

Despite everything that is going wrong in America, it is comforting to know that companies we know, love and trust, do not share the same views with a president who causes so much hate and mistrust in a country that is suppose to be free and full of love.

Get smart about the HPV vaccine


Hey guys! So it’s time to drop some knowledge on you for your sexual health. I’m going to be telling you guys about HPV, otherwise known as the human papillomavirus. HPV is the most commonly sexually transmitted infection (STI).

How common do you ask? Well, so common that nearly half the people who are sexually active will contract the virus at least once during some point of their lifetime. There are different types of HPV too, some cause warts and others can cause cancer. That is why it is so important to get vaccinated.

HPV is spread when you have vaginal, oral or anal sex with someone who has the virus. Sometimes, when a person is infected with the virus, they may not even realize it because they can show no symptoms and may not even show symptoms until years later.

Typically HPV goes away on its own and doesn’t cause any health problems. However, if the virus doesn’t go away, it can cause genital warts or cancer. If you have the virus that causes warts, you experience things like a small bump or a group of bumps, that can be small or large, raised or flat, or cauliflower shaped in your genital area. If you have the type that causes cancer, then you are at risk of getting cervical cancer, cancer of the vulva, vagina, penis, or anus, and oropharyngeal cancer (cancer in the back of throat, base of tongue or tonsils).

It’s a pretty scary virus to think about ever having, especially since most people will have it in their lives. But there are ways to prevent yourself from being a statistic. Make sure you get vaccinated, if you aren’t vaccinated yet.

You usually receive the vaccination around 11-12 years old, but there are “catch-up” vaccines available for women under the age of 27. Currently there is no test that can determine if you have the virus or not. So most people do not know they have it, until they have warts and, for women, if they have an abnormal Pap test result.

So If you are sexually active, make sure you are using a condom, the right way, every single time you have sex because it can lower your chances of getting the virus.