Tucson sunshine, sunburn, shooting memorial

Thank God I visited Tucson while it was 74 degrees of perfection! Before I delve into the details of my brief trip to the southwest, I’ll take you on a photo tour of the University of Arizona:

UofA campus
Administration Building
Heritage Hill, where I used to hang out in between classes and meet colorful people
University Boulevard

I also visited the Tucson shooting victims’ UMC memorial. I didn’t expect to choke up during the five minute visit, but that’s what ended up happening.





Aside from the memorial, the trip was fairly drama-free. I sat in the sun all day Friday and Saturday. Because my skin had been deprived of daylight and vitamin D for four months, I assumed it would respond well to sunshine, but no. I got sunburned very badly. My chest, arms, and face look like a lobster. Good thing I can bundle up in D.C., no one will ever know the difference. I guess I really was meant to live in Ireland, where my great-great-great grandparents were born.

The sunburn was totally worth the warmth, though. I literally wanted to spend as many hours as possible outside, especially during the early afternoon. I won’t be seeing that kind of daylight for at least another three months, so I chose to take advantage of the opportunity while I still could.

We're a bit too goofy for twenty-somethings, but the rest of the world is too stuffy!

Dinner was fabulous, and I reunited with some of my favorite Daily Wildcat alumni, Luke, Jazmine, and Anna.

You see, Anna and I went shopping Friday at Pitaya, my favorite store on University Boulevard, and I fell in love with this little white dress. Before trying it on, I was well aware that I could not don such a tiny thing in D.C. during winter, but it was far too beautiful for me to pass off as a waste of money (which it probably was, but oh well, I never shop.) So I purchased the white dress, which, if I’m brave enough, I may wear out to the D.C. bar scene sometime in the near future. Who cares about 23 degree weather? I’m one tough cookie.

Much thanks to the lovely Kendra for putting up with me all weekend 🙂 It takes a lot to deal with me for 72 hours straight, but she continues to amaze me with her patience and warmth. As you’ll read below, I’m grateful for all the great people in my life. She’s certainly among them, and I’m lucky to know her.

Most of all, it was fabulous going from THIS:

Wednesday January 26, northern Virginia. YUCK.

To THIS:

Friday January 29, Tucson, Arizona. YAY!

On Saturday, I met up with my former college roommate and longtime UofA friend, Carolyn. She’s coming to visit me in D.C. for St. Patty’s Day, so I look forward to hanging out with her then, too.

Some of my friends were sad I couldn’t spend more time with them, and I definitely felt the same way. Unfortunately my trip was just far too short for too much activity. Plus, I’m not one to linger, as I’ve mentioned before. My father the New Yorker always taught me to move quickly and avoid stalling, so I try to incorporate those orders into my everyday life. Hopefully the next trip will be longer and even more thrilling.

On my flight home, I bumped in the redheaded old man from West Virginia that I mentioned in my previous blog post!

In summary, I became “bff’s for the day” with a West Virginia redheaded grandpa dude on my Thursday flight to Tucson. He sat behind me on the plane and right next to another redhaired lady, so we all speculated that American Airlines conspired to group all redhead passengers together on the plane. I adored this guy, mainly because he reminded me of my dad in pretty much every way possible, so imagine my amusement when I ran into him and his sweet wife on the same returning flight. We soon learned that I was once again placed in the row in front of them, so we proved our theory that the airline segregates redhead customers (I’m being facetious, of course :).

I appreciate familiar faces of any kind, even those I really haven’t seen all that much.

On my flight home, I got seated next to yet another 300-pound person. If you haven’t read my earlier blog post, I sat beside a 300-pound guy on my Dallas-Tucson flight, and the same thing happened on my Tucson-Dallas flight. Like I’ve said before, I find it cruel and pathetic of others to bash overweight individuals, but this was truly uncomfortable. I would never make fun of someone for their weight, but when I’m already uncomfortable and without any room on the plane, the last thing I want is to be pressed up against the disgusting airplane wall and window, both of which have more germs and gross food remnants than I care to count. Thankfully, both of these people were quite lovely and I ended up having a good chat with each of them, but I was definitely feeling a little claustrophobic during those long flights.

On another one of my connecting flights, the man to my left kept staring at me and playing on his GameBoy Color. Not to be overly judgmental, but really, who uses GameBoys anymore? Better yet, what sane 50-year-old man would gain entertainment value from an old school children’s video game? I’m not even sure you can still buy GameBoy batteries or devices anymore. Perhaps that would make a good news piece: Are Gameboys still in production? If not, where can active users purchase batteries? Is eBay stocked up with any of that junk?

All right, I think that should do it for today’s ranting/opining. In a nutshell, I needed to escape D.C. winter for a few days and I succeeded in doing just that. Along the way, I caught up with some awesome college buddies, all of whom reminded me of how lucky I truly am. I’m not perfect, and I’ve certainly encountered some ugly situations, but I have so much to be thankful for. Including this sunlamp, which is going to save my sanity this winter:

UA Homecoming 2010

Homecoming 2010

Just like that, the dream is over.

I spent about two months anticipating my first UA Homecoming, and now I only have the next one to look forward to.

Just like I predicted, there were some intense accidental run-ins and awesome catch-up sessions on this trip. I feel my vacation was a success because I saw 98% of the friends I promised to visit, even though I only hung out with some of these people for just a few minutes. It’s better than nothing, and it’s more than most will do.

As made obvious to some of my friends, I was slightly anxious at the start of my trip about not being able to get together with everyone I hoped to see. But, to my luck, everything came together, and I’d like to go ahead and say it’s because of my epic planning/scheduling skills. What can I say, I’m actually pretty efficient when it comes to organizing social events.

I dedicated early Thursday night to Dyanna, Johnny, Kendra, Kyle, and John. Later that evening, I caught up with Welby, Lishko, and Rico, all of whom I’ve known since my freshman year of college. They were in the Kappa Alpha fraternity, which I frequented far too often until junior year of college. We talked at the Auld Dubliner for a while, and then I headed back to Kendra’s humble abode.

On Saturday morning, I had coffee with Anna, one of my former Daily Wildcat co-workers. We chatted for two hours and I realized how much I missed our conversations. Thankfully, she’s probably going to intern in D.C. this upcoming summer, so we’ll probably roam the district together.

At 2 p.m., I went to Chipotle with Erica, Kendra, and the infamous Angela, with whom I became bff’s this past summer while we visited the south of France. I loved talking to the girls about their class schedules as well as our own memories. It was quite lovely.

Then, at 5, I had an epic reunion with Luke and Jazmine, my favorite Daily Wildcat co-workers. Even though I met them during my last semester of college, I do not hesitate to classify them as some of my greatest friends of all time. Thankfully, our dynamic has not changed one bit. Coincidentally, we were all sort of dressed similarly, but it’s really not all that unusual. We all have the same brain. Jazmine and Luke are essentially the same person, and I spent lots of time last year telling Luke that he is the male version of me, only he has better luck with relationships and is better at picking romantic partners. Maybe we can all learn from him.

We're all wearing a little blue!

Anyway, it truly brightened my month to reconnect with these two again. I love their spirit, energy, work ethic, and personalities. I honestly feel like my college experience would have been dull without them. I will continue to adore them from afar, and it’s my hope that they never forget about me!
On Friday night, I went bar hopping with John and Johnny, and we bumped into several buddies at Gentle Ben’s and the Auld Dubliner. The boys were gentlemanly enough to buy all my drinks for me, but, like a responsible adult, I didn’t imbibe very much at all. I’m a tiny person now, and I don’t have the stomach nor stamina that I did back in college.

Saturday was awesome, and I started off the day with an early lunch on University Boulevard. I ate at Paradise Bakery with Carolyn, my best friend since freshman year. We met during the first week of college in the dorms. Because we were the only non-sorority girls in Coronado Hall, we banded together and haven’t parted ways since. I miss Carolyn all the time, and even though we have changed considerably over the years, I know we will always be best friends. Nothing is going to alter that.

After a quick trip to the UA Bookstore, Kendra and I wandered the UA Mall to begin tailgating. We met up with Angela, Erica, Welby, Lishko, Matt Velez, and Greenberg. I stumbled upon several other friends, so that was also nice. More than anything, I was beyond thrilled to be with my greatest college buddies once again.

Love my KA friends!

I concluded my vacation at Gentle Ben’s bar, and I hung out with Erik, Matt, and Jessica. I’ve known Erik and Matt since the dorm days, and I can truly say that they’re my closest male friends at the UA. It was wonderful hanging out with them again, and they really were the perfect people to round out my trip. Erik reminded me to stay away from disrespectful douchebags, and Matt and I swing danced and serenaded “Poker Face” to each other. I sang along with lots of people this weekend, and I wish I could do that more often in DC. Too bad easterners never want to sing in bars!

I couldn’t ask for greater friends, all of whom have made me a better person in some way. The best part of this entire trip was that absolutely nothing has changed among me and my friends. It’s as if we never left each other.

Homecoming was fulfilling and completely worthwhile, but now it’s time to move on and continue with my D.C. routine. There will always be a special place in my heart for the desert, Arizona Wildcats, Kappa Alpha fraternity, Daily Wildcat, and student population. I’m so proud to have graduated from this institution, and it’s my hope that I can visit at least twice a year from now on.

Column today, read the entry below too

Be sure to read my entry below, but also take a look at my column Get out! That’s what she said…. I poke fun at some of the absurd reasons that kids are given detention, such as for making “that’s what she said” comments in response to other classmates. No one ever died from hearing “that’s what she said.” If it’s too offensive to someone, that person needs to go live in a box because the real world will be absolutely terrifying, unlivable, and disgusting to anyone who is disturbed by “that’s what she said.” As my dad would say, “butch up” if you feel insulted.

I do, however, sympathize with and support teachers, they do it because they love it, and I can imagine teaching is an extremely taxing job. Regardless, “that’s what she said” jokes shouldn’t send someone into detention! Things are so different in public schools these days…Good thing schools were fairly normal when I was a junior high student.

Check out my ROTC parade and awards ceremony story as well! After all, I was up at 5:00 a.m. to cover the event 🙂

When you’re all done, read the rest of my entries 🙂 Thanks for coming to my page, everybody.

The CPAC 2010 experience

Just got back from CPAC 2010, which surpassed my expectations in every single way. I’d recommend that every conservative attend at some point. CPAC is an exciting environment, and anyone even moderately conservative will feel welcome and at home.

(SCROLL DOWN TO THE BOLDED ‘SPEAKERS’ TITLE TO BYPASS MY PERSONAL ANECDOTE BELOW)!

Kendra and I arrived in DC late on Wednesday night. I’ll remind you that I lived in northwest DC during summer 2008, so I’m very familiar with the area. I stayed at American University while interning in northern Virginia, and it was legitimately the best time of my life. I was 19 years old, excited to be on the east coast, and in complete adoration of my new friends at American University.

I felt right at home in D.C. Sometimes I feel I should have been born there or New York rather than in California, which has been, for most of my life, an uninspiring place for writing/journalism. D.C. is basically the ideal place for me with regards to writing opportunities. Maybe that’s why I just fell in love with D.C. two summers ago.

There was snow on the ground, but the weather wasn’t super chilly. Thank God for missing the big storms.

Thursday was the most exciting day at CPAC.

Speakers

I stood a few feet away from Mitt Romney, met Tucker Carlson, caught up with Mary Katharine Ham, who I briefly worked with while interning at Townhall, and chatted with the other Townhall workers. I worked at Townhall two summers ago, and that was also a phenomenal experience for me. I’d really love to be employed there once I graduate, if they’ll have me, and believe me, I’ve been bugging them like no other!

The speakers were great, for the most part. I was really proud to see CPAC’ers boo an anti-gay college guy off the stage.

I liked seeing Marco Rubio, who I hope will win senate in Florida. Michele Bachmann spoke for 45 minutes instead of her slated 15 minute slot. These individuals made fun of Arlen Specter a lot, and for good reason! Traitor. There was minimal Obama-bashing, to my surprise…I feel like the jokes have gotten so old and dull for everybody.

The crowd had a mixed, mostly negative reaction to the speech by Ron Paul, who isn’t necessarily popular with conservatives. His foreign policy theories make me and many others cringe. The entire audience booed when the poll results showed that Ron Paul was voted the favorite CPAC 2010 speaker. For the most part, Ron Paul probably has a few hardcore followers, but the majority of CPAC’ers seemed pretty displeased with his presence, even though he was the final speaker on Thursday. CPAC typically leaves the most anticipated speaker for the end of the day.

It was awesome when Dick Cheney made a surprise visit to the stage. His daughter Liz was scheduled to talk, and she brought along her dad. “Run Dick, run!” everyone yelled, to which Cheney responded, “KNOCK IT OFF!”

Cheney basically flat-out told everyone that he won’t be running for president in 2012. It’s cool.

Scott Brown spoke as well, but I missed it because I was in the VIP room right next to Romney…for five seconds.

I also liked seeing Newt Gingrich speak, and there were of course a few interesting unknowns up at the podium. The panels on Climategate and college campus indoctrination presented fascinating points.

Though I can’t remember her name, a wonderful Irish woman called Avatar a “beautiful, idiotic film.” I still haven’t seen the movie, so I cannot comment, but I do know that I would never pay money to see it or support James Cameron.

Ann Coulter took the stage at noon on Saturday. I’ll admit that I was feeling sick to my stomach right before her speech, and I was dehydrated for the duration of Glenn Beck’s performance. Not fun, but I’m so glad I sat through my discomfort to watch them, they were the most memorable and inspirational, particularly Glenn Beck as he talked about hitting rock bottom as an alcoholic.

I’m really disappointed that Ann Coulter spoke for less than ten minutes. Way to short change us all. She was ready to leave as soon as she marched up to the podium, and that’s unfair to CPAC. I don’t agree with half of what she says, but I cannot doubt that she’s riveting and entertaining. You can’t take your eyes off her when she speaks. I don’t like that she’s so hard on gays and non-Christians, but she has good points on fiscal responsibility.

She seemed in a rush to get off stage, and that was off putting. “I need to catch a flight!” she repeated a million times, and it just seemed really disrespectful to everyone who showed up at CPAC. Yeah, we know you’re busy, but you were the ONLY speaker to seem so eager to leave. It’s a privilege to ralk at CPAC…

More than anything, I was unsatisfied that I couldn’t see more of her. Do I agree with everything she says? Not at all, and I hate that she’s so mean to gays and non-Christians, but she’s definitely fascinating to watch. I like Keith Olbermann’s show for the same reason. He’s a total lunatic, but he’s hilarious and fun on camera. I can’t get enough of these pundits, whether or not I see eye-to-eye with them.

Glenn Beck, the keynote speaker, was the most entertaining speaker and certainly the funniest, and I’ll admit that I cried when he talked about the time when he lay in the fetal position on his apartment carpet 15 years ago, feeling he destroyed his life and tore apart his family as a result of his alcohol abuse.

“I can either die, or fix my life,” he said, and he chose to live and overcome alcoholism.

He’s an excellent advocate for making change in one’s life, and he reminded us all that to worry and to suffer is a choice. We can let ourselves be miserable, or we can be pro-active. As conservatives, we should always be looking for ways to sort through our issues rather than just cry about all that’s going wrong for us. Kudos to the promotion of self-reliance and inner strength. We are all in the driver’s seat of our lives. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

I’m actually unfamiliar with his TV show and background, but he made me laugh several times during his speech. He kind of made excuses for Tiger Woods, and that wasn’t cool. Tiger Woods is an absolute disgrace. He destroyed his family, disrespected his wife, and thought he could get away with everything. Cheating is never warranted, but perhaps one instance is more understandable than what Woods did. If he wanted to sleep around, he never should have gotten married. I have no problem with men who do this as long as they remain unattached. You can’t have it all, though. If you want to have a good family life, don’t cheat on your wife with multiple women.

Don’t get me started on Tiger Woods

With that, Glenn Beck was amusing. I still wish he didn’t discreetly excuse Tiger Woods, though. He didn’t exactly EXCUSE Tiger Woods. He mainly said, “Of course Woods is sorry, he got caught!” Beck also said something along the lines of how much fun Woods must have been having until it all had to be over. I don’t think that there’s anything positive to be said about Tiger Woods and I was frustrated that Beck would even remotely defend this selfish jerk.

A bunch of college kids got up and spoke on Thursday, and some of them were extremely arrogant, especially considering how unimpressive and average they were! Trevor and I spent a lot of time laughing about this. The UA College Republican club has done a lot more than some of these college speakers, and we would never be so boastful at CPAC. I’d be polite and thankful to get up on that stage. What’s with college kids and this embarrassing sense of entitlement?

It was kind of funny to see them get booed after saying things like, “I know you’re all really here today to see me.” An audience member would immediately yell “RON PAUL!” or “GLENN BECK!” That’s the ugly truth. Be humble or don’t blabber into the microphone. CPAC’ers do not take kindly to braggarts, especially bratty college boys who don’t know a thing about life.

Memory Lane (All about my summer 2008 D.C. experience, you may want to skip over this if you don’t want to read my sentimental thoughts).

I had a nice time wandering around the city with the others. On day two, I dragged the two Kendra’s to Tenleytown, where I lived during DC summer 2008.

I actually showed them the residence hall that I lived in at American University-Tenley campus.

Call it dorky, but that place brings back incredible memories.

That’s just about the worst living condition I’ve ever experienced, and it was the greatest time of my life so far. The building was over 80 years old, the showerheads barely exerted any water, the bathrooms were perpetually disgusting, and the rooms were spartan, but I had so much fun with the people I met and hung out with.

The Kendra’s and I traveled to my old dorm room, which is now a room for three boys instead of two girls. The girl’s bathroom, which was inconveniently located at the end of the hall, is now a men’s restroom. The men’s restroom, which was placed RIGHT next to my bedroom, is now the women’s bathroom.

I miss summer 2008, but I can sort of have the same experience again if I move to DC, which I absolutely love more than any other city in the world. Everyone is well-informed, there is so much going on, the weather isn’t too horrible, the people are interesting in different ways, etc. I want to be back in D.C. I went into a major funk at the start of junior year because I missed D.C. so much.

Tribute to the UACR Club

Anyway, I did a lot of great things this week, and it was a much needed break from school, Tucson, etc.

Thank you to the UA College Republicans for being such awesome people and so unbelievably fun to be around. I definitely want to attend more club meetings this year as well as see everyone on a regular basis.

Everyone stayed up pretty late each night, and it was awesome that we all got so close. It’s not always easy for me to feel 100% comfortable with a huge group of people, but I felt completely welcome with everyone in the UACR’s, all the time.

Plus, we got to talk politics, and that’s always fun for me. I don’t share the exact same views as everyone else, but we had interesting discussions about a myriad of topics. Yay for intellectually stimulating conversation.

I didn’t want to stay out too late any evening. I definitely went out every night, but I wasn’t up until 5 a.m. like certain others. This trip was supposed to be restorative for me in some ways. I wanted a break from all sorts of conflict and complication, and getting enough rest was a good way for me to stay healthy, nice, and apathetic to any minor issues that would otherwise trouble me.

I was, however, happy for my younger CR friends who barely slept because they were having such a good time hanging out with the others. It’s good to see my friends do well. There’s nothing that makes me smile more than that.

At 4:20 a.m., Kendra and Coty had to walk the other Kendra to her shuttle. They waited outside my hotel door, which they’d left wide open. I woke up and got confused as to why the door was ajar, and I immediately flipped out and assumed that someone had walked into our room while I was asleep. I got disoriented, leaped out of bed, and, in my half-conscious state, yelled at the Kendra’s and Coty for being loud. The looks on their faces were priceless and will forever remain in my memory. It was really hysterical. I was totally not awake, yet I was being so rude in my cat pajamas (I have two pairs). Ten seconds later, I realized what I’d done and ran back to bed.

It’s nice to be surrounded by people who aren’t weirded out by odd behavior like that. We laughed it off. We’re all tolerant and patient with each other, and nothing shocks us. I’m grateful to have been part of the UACR’s for four years. I’ve met some of the coolest people ever in that organization. I feel the same way about the Arizona Daily Wildcat staff as well, but I’ve been a CR member since day one of freshman year, so I will always be indebted to that club for providing me with awesome friends back when I was a loner freshman crying myself to sleep every night. Thanks Ry Ellison, Dyanna, Brice McCoy, Nasira, Blake, Mikey, and Joey Chadwick for having my back in the CR’s back then ❤

This week, I've learned that I spend a lot of my time defending my political views to my friends and family, and this is ridiculous. No one should try to change me, nor should they make me feel bad about my views. I don't go around calling them socialist communists, even though I totally could. If I want to enjoy watching Fox News and believe that capitalism is the best option for this country, let me be and don't make personal attacks.

I will always love my friends and family, but I am beyond fed up with them shaming me for this. It should not be this way at all.

Besides, life would be so boring if we all agreed on everything.

Well, ladies and gentlemen, it's back to the grind tomorrow. CPAC is an awesome event, and it's worth going to, even in the snow.

Bye bye, Tucson

Tomorrow cannot get here soon enough.

I can’t wait to go to D.C., which basically turned into my new home after my summer 2008 DC internship. Sometimes, you just need a vacation, and I definitely feel this way right now. I want to get out of Tucson, but I don’t want to be at home in California.

Aside from my nonsensical, petty rambling, I’ve been fairly busy since yesterday.

Check out my news story on President Shelton’s walk on the UA campus.

I’ll also have two stories in the Wildcat tomorrow, and I’ll try to link them before my flight to D.C.

It’s going to be weird having no assignments for a few days, but I guess I’ll be OK with the time off. D.C. should be exciting enough, aside from the snow.

Peace Corps Story in the Daily Wildcat

Be sure to read my Peace Corps story in today’s issue of the Arizona Daily Wildcat. Unfortunately, it was sort of a rushed piece, so some of my best sources could not comment on time for my deadline.

Regardless, I’d like to expand upon the article in this blog. Arizona Student Media director Mark Woodhams said that he would have liked to know more about the story behind the UA Peace Corps alumni rather than just the Peace Corps Fellows program at this university. A personal anecdote is much more riveting than a program blurb, so I’ll focus on the people rather than the program in this post.

Rachel Gotschall, a Peace Corps volunteer in Moldova, shared this interesting information with me,

“The Peace Corps is not for everyone. The amazing thing about volunteerism is that you don’t have to travel to another country to help spread peace and friendship (which is the main goal of Peace Corps). Important volunteer work can be found in every community and in every town. The Peace Corps however is a unique program for those individuals who have a specific interest in volunteering overseas and learning and integrating into a different culture. My suggestion is that if you are interested in the Peace Corps, definitely take a look and get all the information you can. However, by no means should you feel that you are a selfish, unadventurous or uncaring person if you know that it is not the program for you. Like I said, the beauty of volunteerism is that there is no lack of need anywhere. But the experience I am having now has been amazing and eye opening.”

Gotschall continued,

“My experience so far teaching English here in Eastern Europe has been far from what I expected. Part of the reason is that when one thinks of Peace Corps, visions of living in a mud hut in the middle of a remote African village probably come to mind…I know for me that’s what I imagined my service would be like. But here I am in Europe of all places, with running water (not heated but water non-the-less) electricity, a cell phone, and even Internet! However, I quickly found that although on the surface Moldova doesn’t feel that much different from America or extremely exotic, the school system and way of life here is far from what I grew up with in sunny Arizona. I live in a village of about 5,000 people and I teach English classes ranging from second grade to eleventh grade. The main goal of my project as an English teacher in Moldova is to work side-by-side with my fellow Moldovan English Teachers and help them to develop more creative and student-centered lessons. I also have an opportunity to work outside of the school and develop secondary activities/clubs in any area that is needed or wanted by my community. To sum up all that I have learned and am learning here in Moldova; humility, patience, open-mindedness, and flexibility are all traits that are indispensable to a Peace Corps volunteer and I believe are traits that will enrich my life once I get back to America.”

I also interview Nickolaus Eichmann, a former Peace Corps volunteer in Peru, and I wish I’d included more of his personal experience stories in my news article. Some of the memorable comments he made were,

“You get back way more than you give in the Peace Corps. Once you live in a foreign country for an extended period of time, you really see that the only barrier between people is language and that’s it. I would recommend the Peace Corps to anyone and everyone.”

Eichmann also noted that the Peace Corps will give the volunteers the same living conditions that the locals in the area live in. His friend, who lived in Mongolia, lived in a tent just like the people from the area.

Eichmann was able to use the internet in the community he was in, and he also had a satellite phone connection not too far away.

Both of these individuals have positive Peace Corps stories to share with the UA community, and it’s only fair to explain these experiences a little further in the context of my news article.

An Inspirational UA Student to Appear on the Today Show

I’m very proud to say that my longtime UA friend, Zac York will appear on the “Today Show” on Monday to share his experiences with a brain tumor survival. The Arizona Daily Wildcat grabbed this story and mentioned that Zac will also appear in Carolyn Rubenstein’s book, “Perseverance.”

As someone who has lost a parent to liver cancer, there is nothing more amazing to me than a cancer survivor, so it’s rewarding and uplifting to see the Wildcat publish an inspirational cancer survival story on the front page. I’m glad that Zac will appear on TV, and I truly hope his courage and strength will resonate with viewers, particularly the terminally ill who may have already come to terms with the fact that their days are numbered.

Zac didn’t submit to any negativity, and he kept fighting for his life at a young age. This is the best story I’ve seen in the Wildcat, and I hope to see these kinds of leads more often. More than anything, I’d like Zac’s circumstances to be less of an exception and more of a rule when it comes to cancer survival.

It’s commendable enough that Zac went out of state for college after recovering from cancer. I first met the San Diego native in my Physical Universe general education class during my first semester at UA. The two of us went in to talk to our professor during office hours, and we soon realized that we were both creative writing students.

We even caught the same flight back to California during spring break, and we lived in Villa del Puente dorm during our sophomore year. Zac was the only one of my friends who could understand the pain I suffered from losing my dad to an uncontrollable illness, and I was very thankful to have a friend who legitimately understood the messiness that comes with cancer.

For someone who has been through arguably the most terrifying experience possible, Zac doesn’t complain at all. He’s incredibly positive and doesn’t really talk about his past. He doesn’t believe in dumping his troubles on anyone, and he has many friends in the English department and on campus. There should be more people like him in this world, and I wish I could be as strong as he is. a brain tumor