childhood

Comic Book Idea Fleshed Out

The car crash that took my legs wasn’t really anyone’s fault. It was winter and the roads were slick. We hit a patch of black ice and swerved into the other lane. All I remember are bright lights and a screech.  Then I woke up in the hospital. I didn’t notice I couldn’t move my legs until the doctors asked me if I could. I was bruised and banged up but somehow it didn’t register that there was pain everywhere but my legs. Some people may have been in my position and been disheartened, and don’t get me wrong I totally was for a little bit, but I couldn’t mope. That just wasn’t me. When I realized that I hated the person I was turning into, I turned to the one thing that had always helped me get through hard times, engineering. I did research and tests and built computer models and physical models. And finally, I had a pair of hydraulic legs. I had to ask a friend of mine for help developing the neural interface, but the rest of the work was my own. And in the end, I could interact with the world in a way that someone with paralysis had never done before.

I knew I had to help others like me, so I started trying to find someone to produce my technology and share it with others who needed it. That’s when Ms. Forseon approached me. She was a striking lady, and I’d never met someone like her. She was smart, funny, charming, and just happened to run a multi-billion dollar tech company. She wanted to make my leg technology available to other paralysis victims, and maybe even develop other limbs and enhancement. She painted a beautiful picture of a world where no one had to feel left out or disheartened by paralysis. I was so naïve…

So, I handed over my designs. The first thing she did was patent all of them, and that’s when I started getting suspicious. Then, some villain who called herself Eon Force showed up wearing a modified version of my design! I went to the police, my parents, my teachers, but nobody believed me! They all said that I was too young to concern myself with such things, and that I should go play with my dolls or something. As more and more villains showed up wearing bits and pieces of my technology, I finally had to take matters into my own hands. I engineered a full suit based on my original legs, and set out to stop evil on my own.

Some concept art:

Eon Force Ms. Forseon, normal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

super hero

If you want to make your own super hero, here are the creators I used: Eon Force/ Ms.Forseon and Cybergirl

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Grow Up!

Growing up is hard. Everyone knows that. What everyone doesn’t know is about my growing up process. Well, I’m going to change that. I grew up normally as a youngest child. This means that I have been and still am to some extent a brat. However, I have gone through some things that made me grow up real fast, real quick. Luckily, every negative experience I had made me better, stronger, and happier in the long run; so, no need to bore you with them. Instead I’m going to show you how I’ve changed

Things I Don’t Like Then vs. Now:

venn diagram

Spiders are always the enemy.

First Facebook Profile Picture vs. Current:

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Notice the progression from cheesy quotes to cheesy pictures of questionable makeup decisions to cheesy pictures of a professional adult with her nephew.

How I Spend my Money:

pie chart 2003

pie chart 2013

To be fair, most of my food/drink cost is still candy.

So there you have it, definitive proof that I’ve grown up. I mean, just look at all those adult things I buy and dislike.

If I Were in Charge of All the Advertising Directed at Children…

If somebody said to me, “Hey, Julija, how would you like to be in charge of all of the advertising directed at children?” I would be ecstatic. There is a lot of good advertising out there, but there’s also a lot of bad stuff, too. The biggest problem that I see, and that honestly makes no sense to me, is an extreme gendering of toy advertising directed at children. When I was a kid there was gendering, of course, but there was also a lot of middle ground. There were toys that were for both boys and girls and I liked that. I have thought a lot about this phenomenon and the only thing I can think of as the cause is this:  as the internet pushes more and more targeted marketing the toy/cereal/childhood industries are trying to do so as well. But, here’s the deal, kids are much more impressionable than adults. They don’t know what they like or dislike. So, targeted marketing for children has this strange side effect of actually creating the targeting it targets.

“Why is that such a big deal?” You’re probably asking. Well, think about the ads that have come out recently that your kid is probably watching, specifically toy ads. Do you really want you little girl to think that all she can play with are dolls and fairy princesses? Do you want your little boy to think that trucks and tools are the only things he should like? There have been quite a few backlashes to the female side of this, see goldieblox and this interview with Rachel Giordano. However, I have seen a startling lack of backlash in the boys department. Yes, products for girls tend to be sexist in an overt way, but products for boys are too. They may have much more variety in the types of toys, but they still send a message that is not entirely positive. I’m not saying that the focus should move towards backlash for young boys; I’m saying that the backlash should be for children in general.

So, I have been given control of all the advertising and what do I do? First, I don’t allow stores to separate toys by gender. Put all the Disney toys together, I say! Second, I would start a new trend in commercials where no matter if the toy is a ‘boy toy’ or a ‘girl toy’, it shows both boys and girls playing with it and enjoying it. Girls can enjoy laser shooting, color changing, bad guy fighting toys as much as boys; and boys can like sparkly, outfit changing, soft and cuddly toys as much as girls. Lastly, I would encourage toy companies to educate parents and their children about advertising. “Raise your kids as cynics,” says this New York Times article. Parents are starting to respond to transparency in companies, and if we can change the way parents think about their kids/gender maybe we can raise an awesome new generation!

Introducing THEMES!

Well hello there, again.

I’m glad that you decided to come back (I wasn’t sure you would).

Since yesterday was such a struggle for me, I decided that I needed a theme to make my life easier. So the theme for the time being is…

FOOD!!!! YAAAYYYY!!!!

I’m going to start off the theme by sharing a story from my childhood about the most perfect food ever, grilled cheese.

I was probably around four when we went to some nice restaurant downtown with my grandparents. We stood by the door waiting to be seated and my brother and sister were reading the menu to figure out what they wanted for dinner. My brother would comment on something he read and my sister would respond, then I would chime in pretending that I could read it too. I already knew what I wanted, of course, but I didn’t want to be left out. After a while my brother turned to me with the saddest look on his face I’d ever seen.

“Julyte, they don’t have cheese…”

“WHAT? How do you know?”

“It’s right here on the menu.” He pointed to a line at the bottom. “Looks like they don’t have bread either. I’m so sorry. I guess you’ll just have to get something else.”

I sputtered at my brother then stared at that small line of text at the bottom of the menu trying to make sense of the squiggles that were ruining my life. It couldn’t possibly be true, could it? A waiter came to show us to our table, and I dragged myself away from the menu on the wall. I stared at my feet, trying to hold back tears and be a big girl. The walk to the table was miles long, and all I could think about was the rumbling in my stomach and how I would surely starve. I looked around at all the happy people eating their gross grown up food and fought the lump in my throat.

When we sat down I continued to stare at my hands, contemplating death. My siblings and grandparents buzzed around me saying things that I could not or would not comprehend. How could they just keeping going like normal? Did they not understand that their precious little sister/granddaughter was going to suffer the most terrible death imaginable? I wanted to scream at them for not understanding the severity of the situation.

I was once again interrupted by a waiter, I was starting to think he was very rude, setting down the food my grandpa had ordered for me, a grilled cheese. Grilled cheese was my favorite, and that was one of the best I’d ever had.