Tuesday, April 23

My Law School Choice!

Any guesses??

How about now?

What a lovely purple-ish bird!

Aren't deer cute when they're not destroying cars?

That is one, happy skiier! Any guesses yet?

Hmm, what city is that?

Looks a little like Iowa, but it's not!

I'm going to the University of New Hampshire School of Law!!!

UNH was the first school to accept me and I'm so happy to be moving there in the fall. Throughout getting other acceptance and rejection letters, I was very impressed with the materials and correspondence they sent me. They were classy and personalized their letters towards my law interests (like civil rights and women's issues), which I really appreciated.

They're known for intellectual property law, but they also have a social justice center and are in the New England area. The school is basically on the same level as Drake. :)

The classes are small enough that people get to know each other, which I'm excited about. Concord's about an hour-fifteen from Boston.

I've paid my first seat deposit and in late May, J and I will be flying up for Admitted Students Day! I've been waiting until then to say if I'm goint to UNH or not, but I couldn't wait anymore and didn't really see the point since I've 99% made up my mind! I have every expectation of loving this school even more when I see it, and I hope I'm not disappointed. Thankfully I've talked to a few future classmates of mine already and everyone seems really nice!

Did you guess correctly? :)

Friday, April 19

Dear Jezebel

Dear Jezebel,

I love you. I really do. I've been faithfully reading up on your hilarious views on society, feminism, douchebags, religion, and some weird stuff that I can't remember right now but that I'm sure was equally hilarious. Because you are hilarious, and I love what you do.

There is one thing that you do, though, that I don't like. I don't like that you pick on sorority girls.

Here's what I find when I search, "sorority" on your site: CLICK. 

Indiana Sorority Girls Attend Totally Cute Homeless-Themed Party

Crappy Tweets From the Deranged Sorority Girl's Deleted Twitter Account

Seriously, these are just a few of the articles that come up. There are some positive articles: Apparently there is a cool "Jewish Sorority Girl," and a Greek Council doesn't like sexual assault. Those were all the positive articles I could find on your site.

Granted, a lot of the stuff that comes up is regarding fraternities, but I'm not really okay with how you portray them either. Literally everything that comes up about fraternities is negative.

Have you ever been to a fraternity with an open mind? Have you ever joined a sorority? Have you ever hung out with sorority girls? I remember reading the very last article on the list last year and cringing; That particular author was vehemently against Greek Life throughout the entire article, yet at the end says, "Well, it wasn't that bad, but it wasn't for me."

No "sorority girl" is sitting here thinking, "BUT BUT BUT NOOOO. Greek Life is for EVERYONE and if you don't join MINE you're a FAT BITCH."

Seriously, I promise you this.

But just because something wasn't for you doesn't mean you should go out there are call us:
  • Materialistic
  • Superficial
  • Bimbos
  • Petty
  • Mean
  • Followers
If you tried, you could find a hell of a lot of articles about sororities and fraternities doing amazing things for their communities and other people. The Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity at Simpson College cleans up the highway every year as brothers. They go around to small town football games and cheer on the home team. All the fraternities and sororities at Simpson College participate in Campus Day, where we volunteer to clean up areas around campus and in our communities. My sorority reads to 3rd graders and exchanges pen pal letters with them. We put on a volleyball tournament every year to raise money for kids who can't afford books. All Greeks on Simpson College's campus volunteer their time and effort to help others.

You could read that being in a sorority gives us leadership experience. You could learn that Greeks at Simpson get higher grades than anyone else on campus, so we're not exactly bimbos. You could find out that we're typically very supportive and loving of one another, and if we're not, we're doing something wrong.

Jezebel, why don't you ever post about things like that? Why don't you post about Greeks making a positive difference in the world instead of how much sorority girls loooove Ugg boots (personally, I couldn't care less about what shoes my sisters wear). Why do you make fun of a pagent winner's struggles to keep up with sorority life? Do you know how much time goes into being a Greek member? Do you know how many meetings we have to go to, how many required events we have? Do you understand that having to leave for any reason could be painful?

Apparently you don't, and that upsets me.

I'm not trying to say that Greek people don't make mistakes. I'm not saying we should have parties with racist themes or sexually assault people in the bathroom. Obviously those people showed very poor judgment. It isn't fair to blame Greek Life for something a few members of a sorority or a fraternity did, and it's even worse to blame us without even trying to acknowledge that these people don't represent us.

Jezebel, every time you post another anti-sorority article, my love for you lessens a little more. I love what you do, but I don't like being badmouthed for something I didn't even do, or insulted for being superficial when you don't know the first thing about me. I don't like having my sisters, or fellow Greeks, scolded because other people made mistakes or other people are mean.

It's fine that your authors weren't in sororities, or didn't really fit in to the Greek system. I'm not upset about that; but why are you having them report or write articles on sorority life? Why not have someone with a typical sorority experience write about that?

If you'd like some positive sorority examples, I've written about it:

Seriously Jezebel, I love what you do. But you need to cut out some unfounded negativity towards my Greek Life families. I'm not cool with that.

Monday, April 8

Restaurant Review: Oyama Sushi

1853 Lower Muscatine Rd. Iowa City, IA 52240

I've been wanting to do a review on Oyama Sushi in Iowa City, Iowa, for a long time. Really, since I realized I wanted to go back at least once a week for the rest of my life.

In case you don't know in real life (hello internet loves!), you should know that I love sushi. My parents introduced me to sushi when I was in elementary school. I was that weird kid who brought HyVee sushi to lunch with me when we had to bring a sack lunch. I was the one who introduced pretty much all my friends to sushi and got them addicted.

This basically means that I've had a ton of sushi. At this point, I know what a good price is, I know what good sushi is, and I know how to spot a hell of a deal.

Oyama, my friends, is a hell of a deal.

We'll start with the restaurant itself. It's decorated like pretty much any other Japanese/Sushi restaurant. It's usually pretty quiet, but where it truely stands out is the choice of background music.

I've been there probably close to 20 times, maybe more. Half the time I'm there, it's the "typical" background music of Japanese women singing with instrumentals behind them. The other half of the time, it's 1990's Top 40 music.

This means while you eat sushi, you might hear Celine Dion, Beyonce (I'm pretty sure J and I heard "Bootylicious one time), or any manner of awesome music from your childhood.

When I look at a sushi menu, the first thing I look for is the "basic" rolls to see how much they are. I'm not rich. I don't have money to just throw around on $6 Salmon Maki. I know that if the basic rolls are expensive, the fancier rolls are going to be way out of my price range. I like to see the more basic rolls be between $3 and $5. If a salmon roll is above $5, you're going to have to work to keep me at that sushi restaurant.

Oyama has a great selection of basic rolls, as well as some amazing signature rolls. The big difference? They use chunks of good quality, tender fish instead of using mashed up fish to save money. If you get a salmon roll, you're going to get a beautiful, delicious chunk of real, fresh salmon.

My favorite basic rolls are:
  • Salmon roll
  • Seaweed Crunch roll (they use seaweed salad in the roll itself with crunchies; it's delightful!)
  • Salmon Avocado roll
  • Yellowtail Scallion roll
  • Tokyo Roll (crab meat with crunchies and some kind of mayo)
  • Shrimp Tempura roll
  • Spider roll
  • Ikura sushi
Waiting patiently for our food to get there!
Salmon Avocado roll, Tokyo roll and Ikura!
This Tokyo roll is looking FINE.
J's sushi: Blackened Tuna roll, Fiesta roll, and (what's left of the) Yellowtail Scallion roll!
Overview: Oyama Sushi in Iowa City is (for sushi) cheap, great quality, quick, and usually really great service. I've checked the prices of other sushi places all over Iowa City, and these prices were by far the best. If you live in the area, check it out! If you're visiting, check it out too! I'll even take you. :)

What are your favorite sushi rolls? Do you have a favorite place? 
What other sushi restaurants in Iowa City should I check out?

Thursday, April 4

Your Sorority Relationship

You've heard about the different sororities on campus and can't help but think, "Which one would work best for me?" even if you're not sure you're interested. You start seeing girls from the different sororities on campus and get little flutters at the thought of being their sister. You wonder if years down the line, you and them will be best friends. You laugh at your silly fantasies.

You decide to go through Recruitment. You figure, why not? At the very least, I'll get a free t-shirt out of it, meet a lot of girls on campus, and get to eat free food.

As you go through Recruitment, you start to realize which houses are not for you. You go to a house and think, "Hey, I don't really meld well with the girls here." You go to another house. This has serious potential... This could be it. You go to another house and think, "Wait, this could be it too!" During Recruitment, you meet girls who you immediately know you will be friends with. You go on a hundred little dates, trying to figure out who they are and where you fit in.

You may not have a perfect time at each house. Maybe one night, a girl says something to you that bothers you. Maybe a girl doesn't talk to you and you feel awkward. Not every date has to be perfect. Maybe you're not invited back to one or two of the houses that you really liked. You're not guarenteed perfect dates. Some are bound to be worse than others.

Finally, Recruitment's over and you have to make a decision. Do you want to committ to this sorority? Are you ready to make that step? Do they even want you too? You're pacing around your room until you finally get a call... And you find out that, yes, they feel the same way.

You pledge your love and committment to them. You're excited and jittery. It's so new! You're learning so much about your sorority and about your sisters and they're learning just as much about you. You start forming closer friendships with certain girls. You think back to earlier in the year, when you looked around at some of these same girls and fanasized about being their friend... And here you are, sharing secrets, clothes, and shampoo.

You're expected to have dates on the regular and talk about your relationship. It's not super fun, but you know it's necessary to keep the relationship strong.

You decide to move in together.

You're nervous and excited! You're going to get new roommates and live in the same house as 40+ other girls! It sounds daunting, but you can just imagine all the sleepless nights, the study breaks, dinners, movie watching... It's going to be perfect!

But sometimes it's not. Sometimes a girl you're close with will do something that hurts your feelings. Sometimes you will hear about girls in the house making fun of other girls for being fat or for being awkward. You'll do some of this yourself. You'll talk about how this girl or that girl is so pretentious and thinks she's all that. You'll say something mean about someone, they'll hear about it, and you'll apologize.

You'll realize that your relationship was not quite as perfect as it seemed. You'll feel guilty for realizing this imperfection.

Eventually, you'll realize that your relationship is not about perfection. You'll realize that your sisters, like you, are human and are going to make mistakes. You'll realize that being in a relationship is not about being perfect for the other person 24/7, but about something so much more than that.

You'll realize that this relationship is beautiful, not in spite of the imperfections, but because of them.

Sometimes you are going to judge your sisters. Sometimes they are going to judge you. Sometimes you are going to disagree. Sometimes people are going to come between you and cause a rift. Sometimes you are going to say things that are meant to help, but actually hurt.

You will realize that the success of your relationship is not judged by how little you mess up, but by how you fix the wounds that you have made, time and time again.

You will realize that you have made a lifelong committment, and nothing should come between that. You will sit next to that girl that kind of annoys you because she is your sister. You will wish that all the girls in the house were the same political party as you, but then you will stop wishing that because you realize that would be boring. You will understand that some girls are conservative and some are liberal, and that both are okay. You will not agree with your sisters all of the time, and you will know that that is normal.

You will disapprove of the things they do sometimes. You will not judge them, because they are your sisters. You will stay up late feeding your drunk roommate cereal and trying to make sure she gets to bed safely. You will ask your sister if she would like to go to church with you, and if she says no thanks, you will smile because she is your sister. You will not like every group your sisters are involved in. You will not approve of all the people they hang out with.

Your job, as their sister, is to love them regardless. Your job is to understand that it takes all kinda of women to make up a sorority. Your job is to mess up sometimes, forgive yourself, and heal the wounds.

You will realize that your sisters love you whether you are fat, skinny, or in between. You will always have someone to go with you to an event on campus. Someone will always have your back when you are broken up with; even if it was totally your fault, you will be told repeatedly that that guy was a huge asshole. You will be loved whether you are single, in a serious relationship, or dating three guys at once. You will not be judged for who you were in high school or who you were back in your home town. Over breaks, you will be told how much you are missed. When you graduate, you will also be told how much you are missed, and this will mean even more to you than you can imagine.

You will laugh yourself until you almost pee, which will make you laugh even more. You will have movie nights and cry over dying, lovesick characters. You will talk to your sisters about that boy they like who hasn't called them back yet. You will cry to them about that boy (or girl) who hasn't called you back either. You will wear swimsuits over your clothes and prance around the house. You will steal woven reindeer and keep him safe in your closet. You will go out with your sisters to The Zoo (when you are of age, of course), have a few drinks, and dance to "Bad Romance." You will help each other home at night. You will study with your sister who is failing Statistics because who could blame her? It's a hard class. You will have late nights. You will wonder, "Why am I always staying up so late?!" Then you will look around at your sisters laughing in the lounge with you, and you will smile and know why.

This is a relationship. It is not always easy, it is never perfect, and it is always hard work... But it is always worth it.