Thursday, November 18, 2010

Reflections on Pizza...


There is nothing more attractive to a college student than free food. Being a cheapskate in search of free food is part of what it means to be a college student. When I was a senior in high school, I witnessed a friend of mine, who had recently become a college freshman, stuff five packs of Nutter Butters into his pant pockets. I was baffled by his uncharacteristic behavior, and I marveled at the sight. His reply: "Just you wait a year." A year later, I now sneak food out of the dining hall like a champion. It's indisputable and undeniable. College is filled with free food, and more specifically- pizza. Everywhere you turn there are events posters using the magic phrase "FREE PIZZA" to lure students to attend events.
"Come to hall council! FREE PIZZA!" "Come weave baskets with the multicultural club! FRE PIZZA!" "Come to a lecture by Professor Collons on the biological composition of stars! FREE PIZZA!"

But why pizza?

Theory 1:
Pizza is cheap. Thus, the establishment, wishing to provide free food for their students, provides endless amounts of pizza, because it costs next to nothing and is filling.
Theory 2:
College kids love pizza. Thus, groups cater to the tastes of their audiences and provide what they want-pizza.
Sub Theory A) College kids like pizza no better than any other food, but the ready supply of pizza available to them has conditioned them to love pizza.
Sub Theory B) College kids like pizza because it is essentially cheese and bread-two of the most mild, basic, universally-liked foods known to mankind.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Awesome Things

A single rose can be my garden... a single friend, my world.
~Leo Buscaglia

Small things are the awesome things. That's why I love this:

Because the small things are the things that make life scintillate with joy.

Things like:

It's the little things in life that make up the beauty. 
One of my favorite spots at Notre Dame is the single white rose bush on campus. There are red and pink roses all over campus, but only one white rose bush. 
It's a beautiful singularity.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Questions and Answers

"Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer."~Rainer Maria Rilke

So. Despite my best intentions, I didn't pen a line of a blog post in the past three months, because, (drumroll) I've begun my freshman year at university!! Transitioning from high school to college has been a highly rewarding, exponentially beautiful, and occasionally distressing journey. Thus, my days(and nights) have been consumed with study and homework (and Sporcle. And talking. And procrastinating. *guilty face*) College may be an overused, unsatisfactory excuse to neglect writing here for so long, but it conveniently segues into my topic.

I think one of the greatest sources of stress and soul-searching these past months has been the desire to live life to the fullest. Let me explain. Frosh-O weekend, (that's freshman orientation weekend in Notre Dame lingo), we were constantly encouraged to find our full potential and to take advantage of every opportunity. However, at the time, I was overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of possibilities and opportunities that had been opened up to me. I was afraid that I would miss wonderful opportunities, and I guess I assumed that meant that dire consequences would ensue. It seems like a silly fear now that I realize I have four years here to take advantage of every marvelous opportunity, but at the time, it was stressing me out.

However, that stage passed (hallelujah) but, more questions arise. What activities should I do? What clubs should I join? What service opportunities should I participate in? What shows should I do? What shows shouldn't I do? What classes should I take? Should I get coffee or tea? (answer: coffee) When should I go to Mass? What should I wear today? What should I do with my life? What does God want me to do?

That's a lot of questions. And I didn't have the answers.

Thankfully, God has put two amazing people in my life. One is Mother Teresa, the other is a friend/mentor/director/rolemodel who sent me the above Rainer Maria Rilke quote. That quote made me realize that God doesn't expect me to have all the answers. In fact, He doesn't need me to have all the answers. What He needs is for me to trust Him. If I had all the answers, then I'd never have to trust Him. And what fun would that be? No fun, that's what. Life would be insanely boring if we had all the answers to the million questions that we encounter. We just have to keep asking the questions and God will send us answers.

But what are we to do in the meantime? We can't just pray for answers and then sit back and wait for God to send them. We have to act. Move forward. Live. But what do you do when you don't know what you're supposed to be doing? The answer is simple. Love. Live each day focusing on others. Mother Teresa's writings are a constant inspiration and reminder of that. Her simple yet profound example of love and complete giving of herself is rousing-I feel like dashing off into the Great Unknown and single-handedly change the world. I may not know what I'm supposed to do after I graduate, what my vocation is, or what I should wear to the dance, but I do know that I can offer a prayer for someone I pass by, or hold open the door for someone, or help someone with their laundry, or bake them brownies when they're feeling blue or just smile. These simple acts of love are what life's all about. A life lived in love is a life lived in God. And God's got the answers. He is the answer.

"I know now, Lord, why you utter no answer. You are yourself the answer. Before your face questions die away. What other answer would suffice?"
Til We Have Faces, C.S. Lewis