Politics Is Personal!

Are you the type to sit down and listen to your president’s speech or the year’s financial budget? If you answered no, then you would most likely consider yourself a “non-political” person but actually you are.

We are all entangled in this web of politics, the only difference is that some of us choose to ignore it. And this is where the problem is; our inaction and complacency in not getting involved. We recently had a Student Government Forum on Saturday and the turnout was meager to say the least. I was part of those students who did not come out. The reason I did not go was because I was sleepy and I wanted to sleep in. Then yesterday I received the minutes from the Forum and I asked myself, how many people were actually going to download this PDF document and read it? I am guessing not a lot, but even further how many people were going to follow up on the minutes? How many people were going to be active participants of the political web?

More often than not we are not active political participants, we are passive participants. We know what is going on and we also to some degree understand what is going on but we rarely make a contribution. We rarely care enough because it does not affect us! But it does, because politics is the “activities aimed at improving someone’s status or increasing power within an organization.” So by virtue of existing in a certain community you are politically involved. The argument sometimes is “even if I do something nothing will change” but the truth is that participation is like slowly boiling the water with a frog inside. The frog will not feel the temperature rising until it is boiled to death. Likewise the political organisation will not feel as if anything is being done as you protest or write petitions until they realize that you have built a culture that breeds people who refuse to be docile in the face of dogma.

So to you the political minded person I say fight on, keep attending the forums, and the meetings, keep drafting the petitions. To you the “non-political” person I say start participating, even if it’s in a small way-open the email- and slowly start practicing a culture of “active participation.” The skills that one requires to become an active citizen are built and acquired over time, they do not just fall from the sky over night. School is place to help one practice these skills, school is a place that allows one to be more than just a blind follower or sheep. In the end if you get comfortable with being a sheep it’s hard to become a lion(active participant)!

How to keep up with your New Year’s resolutions

It’s simple. Don’t make any.

Maybe that was a little too harsh. What I meant to say was, don’t set yourself up for disappointment.
“In 2015, I will have all A’s in school”
“I have left (insert name here) in 2014”
“2015 will be the year I lose those x kilograms and become the full blown babe I know I was destined to be!”

Okay, so the last one is a bit of an exaggeration, but that doesn’t mean it hasn’t been said! On the 31st of December every year, the world’s population (at least those using social media) divides into two groups: those who couldn’t care less about New Year’s Eve and use the night as an excuse to intoxicate themselves and inevitably start the new year with cringe-worthy moments from the night before. And the second group is those who over-exaggerate the meaning of the night and find a million and one empty promises to make under the pretense of “New Year’s resolutions”. Unless you had several A’s before or high B’s the year before, I doubt you will get them just because you wished for them. You also cannot “leave” someone in 2014 because the ENTIRE WORLD is going into the New Year whether you like it or not. And simply wishing that you turn into a babe is not enough, you better put in werk! (Yes, with an e. It is deeper that way.)

I guess what I’m trying to say is that wishes, or resolutions, can only take you so far. It is all about dedication. And if it is something you really want to happen, why wait until the end of the year? There is no unwritten rule that you may only make drastic changes at the beginning of a new year.

All of that aside, here is to hoping that you all achieve your resolutions and don’t just give up on them in February and wait 10 months to lie to yourself (and your twitter followers) all over again.
And above all else, we hope you have an awesome 2015!

In line with yesterday’s article, we hope ALAians Media is helping you think about your goals for this year. 

It’s break time!

The heavens break out in song. The term has come to end. It has been a fun, stressful, emotional three months, but as of today, it’s all over.

To end the term, the academy held it’s second annual Do Something Cool (DSC) event. Two days were spent coming up and working with amazing, creative ideas and projects and this year, students and staffulty pushed themselves even further. We had staffulty rappers, and student singers, and toilets made practically from scratch (don’t ask.) It was a fun event that gave students the chance to explore new skills and interests and just take a break after all the essay writing and problem solving.

check out the facebook page here!

https://www.facebook.com/aladsc?fref=ts

DSC was fun, and a good way to wind into non-academic mode (at least a little) Now, we close for the December break, hopefully to return fresh ready for 2015. Be sure to rest, guys. Yes there are college deadlines and whatnot, but take at least a week to just chill!

ALAians Media wishes you a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a Fantastic New Year.

Things We Should Leave In 2014

Around this time, most of us are more excited/anxious about the New Year than  about Christmas, the ending of Millennium Development Goals, the new Beyonce song or maybe another article by alaianlife.org. This excitement stems from the curiosity about the New Year, what it will bring to for us and what our New Year resolutions will be. But there are certain things that should be left in 2014. In the ALA context, here’s a list:

1. The “I am sorry for the mass email”

Way too often ALA students (even staffulty) send emails directed to individuals and suddenly the email “accidentally” ends up in everybody’s inbox. What should we really forgive you for? Sharing your affairs with the whole school (even alumni who are still part of the mailing list) or flooding our inboxes? Seriously, this needs to stop. In 2015, try to read your email before sending it and pay attention to who the recipients are. At times (which isn’t everyday), these emails are good for a laugh when we are feeling nosey but really, keep your business to yourself.

2. Not showering after sport 

Flashback to Orientation- Hygiene is VERY important. If you didn’t see much value in orientation week, surely you at least remember this. Tell us, how can you enjoy your meal in a sweat infested dining? We appreciate the fact that you want to keep fit, which is good by the way, but guys  SHOWER after sports. The last time you had a drop of water on your body was at 7:03am as you rushed to avoid being locked in the dorms. A shower after sports can only bring good.

3. ALA Girls and your braid struggles

We love and appreciate the fact that you want to embrace the Africa inside of you and putting on those long braids is one way to achieve this, but IT NEEDS TO COME TO AN END. In the spirit of dispelling stereotypes about Africa, your braids are a starting point. You all look identical. Its confusing at times. It’s good to be curious and explore other ways to unleash your African beauty. Try something new. Abeg, 2015 let’s move to another hairstyle. Diversity is one of values, be diverse with your hairstyle.

4. Saturday Evening Quad Walks Must End

We know you guys are going out or you are about to go out or you want to go out or maybe you just want to take a walk but Saturday of all days? Its depressing to be watching from your window and all you see is seven (yes seven!) couples taking turns around the quad. You want to know why you guys are not progressing? Your conversations are circular, and they are not getting to an end. Saturday 8:35 pm is not the best time to be with the bae! Next year, take a walk at 4:30pm near the tennis court and talk. Conversations that happen in the dark never last.

5. Thank You Lil Kesh for your Shoki song but its time has passed.
We moved from Azonto to Kukere, from Kukere to Khona and now Shoki. This is a beautiful song but playing it at EVERY single party isn’t the way to go about it. This a call to all ALA students to bring their turn up music and bring an end to Shoki.

Now, take a deep breathe, close your eyes and observe a moment of silence for all the thing we should leave in 2014.

What Does Your Favourite Song Off Beyonce Say About You?

That’s right…it’s Yonce time and this is one for the “Beygency”! Queen B has definitely had an amazing year so far, from releasing her surprise album Beyoncé, to the Mrs Carter and On the Run tours, to the recent release of her singles 7/11 and Ring Off. And now, she sneezed on this article and it got sickah.

Ever wondered why you listen to that one song off Beyoncé …well we’ve got you covered. Here’s what your favourite song from Queen B’s latest album says about you.

1. ***FLAWLESS
The more you listen to Flawless the more flawless you become (yes… it’s true, take it from me). Flawless- the song for bosses. From waking up, posting up and riding around flawless, to your diamonds being flawless, the Flawless listeners are the people that are more in touch with embracing their “run the world” and boss-like tendencies. So if you ever feel like getting in touch with how much of a flawless being you are, listen to Flawless.

giphy flawless

2. PRETTY HURTS
Pretty Hurts is for the thinkers, the inquisitive ones that question the practices of society and their worth. Pretty Hurts is a great song that goes deep into showing the not-so-great practices of “great” societies. I mean, c’mon “ain’t got no doctor or pill that can take the pain away,” now that is a great line! Who said thinking is restricted to Maths, Sciences and what not?Liistening to Pretty Hurts is just as thought provoking.

giphy pretty hurts

3. BLOW
Well well, we need not go into the details but Blow is most definitely a fun and colourful song! The neon lights, the roller skating rink and colourful outfits make the video the dose of fun that it is. People that have Blow as their favourite are just as fun and colourful as the song itself.

giphy blw
4. YONCE
There’s nothing better than pretending to be in the Yonce video! Slow motion walks, leather jackets, squad chillin’- it’s perfect. Yonce listeners are the ones that embrace the hood and all its perks, whilst retaining their overt flawlessness (see how both songs go together). So, watch the Yonce video, get Yonce worthy outfits for you and the squad, and embrace the hood!

giphy yonce
5. MINE
One of my favourites, Mine passes across the message of two lovers who are embarking on their mature yet love-filled journey together. The song also features Drake, so, it only makes sense that Mine lovers tend to be those that love a chilled beat or have some sort of deep feelings of affection and history with a significant other. It’s a love so deep that “I just wanna say you’re mine, you’re mine.”

giphy mine
6. PARTITION
“Driver roll up the partition fast” because people that love Partition embrace their overtly attractive selves. From their clothes, to attitude, to looks, “partitioners” make sure everything compliments their physical beauty. Also, there’s an element of French in Partition, how much more sultry could Partition and the “partitioners” be?

giphy partition
7. 7/11
Omd, no. 7 is 7/11!! Queen B continues to be the queen of the turn up as she released the video for 7/11 a few weeks ago! Remember how we said there’s nothing better than pretending to be in the Yonce video? Well, something just as good is: turning up to 7/11! The song is for the “turnt hearted” (I believe no one has coined that expression yet)! And it’s so turnt that the lyrics have to be typed in capital, “WA’E YOUR HANDS SIDE TO SIDE, PUT IT IN THE AIR!”

giphy 711
8. DRUNK IN LOVE
Who says alcohol is the only thing that can get someone intoxicated? (Don’t answer that) Well, the Drunk in Love ones are those who just love to have fun with the bae! And plus, it’s a really catchy tune to sing along to, “We be all night!!”

giphy drunk in love
9. XO
XO just gets to you! It’s perfect! The music video and lyrics just put you in a serene and love filled place. You almost literally feel yourself pouring out bucket loads of love (heck, I feel myself pouring out love as I type about XO now)! XO is for those that love to love! Love family, friends and Beyoncé of course. So keep calm and love like XO.

giphy xo
10. SUPERPOWER
Superpower is the song for the power couples. It’s a song for those that know how powerful they are with their significant other. It’s chilled and cool vibe accompanied with Frank Ocean’s voice (*fan girl sigh inserted here*), really set a serene vibe and allows listeners to soak in the awesome lyrics.

giphy superpower

These 10 are most definitely not the only songs on Beyoncé but hey, it’s 10 out of 19. What does your favourite song off ‘Beyoncé’ say about you? Any other artists that you’d like us to analyse what their songs say about you? Comment below.

Wellness Wednesday: Appropriate Behaviour Workshop (Part 2)

Well hello again! It’s been long…we know…but exams were calling. But what’s more important is that we are back now! And for this “Wellness Wednesday” it’s all about the “we told you so”s.

In our previous post on the Appropriate Behaviours workshop, we promised you it would be full of interactive games, videos and great discussions! And guess what? It was…so it’s only fair to say “we told you so!”

The workshop touched on the topics of diversity, tolerance and acceptance. Discussions were full of interesting and valuable insights as they ranged from conversations on gender, sexuality, nationality and much more.

Enough from us, here’s what a few of our ALAians had to say about the #ABWorkshop:

“I liked everything! I liked that we talked about the differences between tolerance and acceptance, and I wish that we had more time so that the conversations could go on and get even deeper!”

“It was amazing facilitating the discussions! It was great to direct and be involved in the discussions. I might have just done EL proud with my facilitating.”

“It was really nice! I enjoyed the games- especially the charades at the beginning (it was really hard)! I would like to have even more interactive games and discussions too.”

Well folks, that’s what a few of the ALAians had to say about the workshop, and it seems like some people might want another workshop next term (Ms Mandisa hints have been thrown).

Also, we’d like to give a great shout out to Ms Mandisa and her team of PCs and staffulty facilitators for helping host the workshop!

And finally, remember to keep the convos on diversity, tolerance and acceptance going!

From us to you…have a great Wellness Wednesday.

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