Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Characters I Wish Were Real So We Could Be Friends

Hosted by: That Artsy Reader Girl

There are a lot of books I wish I didn't end because I love the characters so much. In fact, there should really be a place to meet them - sort of like a Disneyland, but with book characters (and butterbeer, because I didn't get to drink that in Universal Studios, and no I'm not mad about that at all)! While that idea's probably not coming true any time soon, I'd at least like to share 9 book characters I'd befriend. All covers are courtesy of Goodreads.

1-3. Gigi, Bea, and Neerja from Smart Girls Get What They Want 
My study sessions would be 10x more interesting with these girls! Plus, I reread this on Sunday and I'm missing them already!

4. Samantha Lee from Under A Painted Sky
Her connections to Chinese astrology and culture are really interesting, and she's such a sweet person overall.

5. Mei from American Panda
I think she'd be a really good listener, and the best study partner.

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6. Cammie Morgan from I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have To Kill You
Best travel buddy ever, if I could convince her to lend me a private jet...


7. Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter series.
Another study buddy! (Why is everyone I pick a nerd :') ). But Hermione is awesome in countless other ways, and I bet we'd have so much fun. There are plenty to prank with magic around here...
The Harry Potter Gang! Lighting is so poor, lol, but in my defense I took this years ago.
8-9. Audrey Rose Wadsworth and Thomas Cresswell from Stalking Jack the Ripper
I can't just pick Audrey, because Thomas would throw a fit. And besides, these two make a dynamic duo, and I'm not breaking that up!
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Which fictional characters would you want to be friends with? Tell me below!

Thursday, August 8, 2019

A Formula for the Validity of Excuses

Whenever you make up an excuse, how legit is it? What about excuses that come from your friends, etc.? Did the dog really eat their homework? Maybe not, but is there some truth to it? Read on to find out!

To try to figure out how much of an excuse is complete gobbledygook and how much actually has some truth to it, we have to first break up the excuse into parts (if some of these are confusing, don't worry; I'll be explaining them later). Here are the three main components to every excuse/things you should consider whenever you hear an excuse:

  1. Your relationship with the person who's telling you the excuse
  2. The person's history with this sort of event (ex: they "lost" their homework but they never do it anyways)
  3. What the excuse blames (ex: time, money, another person)

    Based on these factors, I've created a 100% foolproof mathematical formula to decide how legit your friend's/family member's/coworkers' excuses are. Here's how it works:

    1. Assign a value from 1-5 to represent how close you are with the person who's giving you the excuse. (1 being total strangers, 5 being inseparable). This basically is how much you trust them. Call this value A.

    2.  Assign a value from 1-3 to represent how the person usually deals with situations like these (1 meaning they always lie, 3 meaning they usually never make excuses for situations like so). Call this value C.

    3. Assign a value from 1-10 based on what the excuse revolves around (from 1 representing something wacky, 10 representing something realistic). Call this value B.

    The formula for how legit an excuse is then: 

    Possible values range from 0 to about 6.5. The higher the value, the more truthful the excuse.

    What does this look like? Here's an example:

    Excuse: A hard-working employee that's worked with you for three years can't come to work today because their child has a doctor's appointment. You've also noticed that every two weeks or so, they haven't been coming because of various appointments. 

    • A: You know the employee works hard, and has worked with you for quite a while. They aren't absent that often, so you let A = 7.
    • C: Whenever the employee is absent, it's because of an appointment. This probably means that the appointment excuse is invalid, but you can't be sure, so you let C = 2.
    • B: The excuse revolves around a child's appointment, which is pretty realistic. You let B = 9
    • The final result you get is about 5.5, meaning that though the excuse may have some fiction in it, the employee's history makes up for it.
    Where does this formula come from? I weighted trust and prior experience over the actual excuse, because that's really how we evaluate excuses. If we someone who know won't lie to us, it doesn't matter what they say, we're likely to believe them. I also converted everything to a logarithmic scale because it makes things easier to compare.

    Disclaimer: this post is made for fun, not to go around wondering if people are lying to you. Use it for funny excuses, but don't get too caught up. At the end of the day, what matters is that you trust people, and don't break that bond :).

    I hope you enjoyed my interpretation of excuses. Want more math-ish posts? Science-y ones? Tell me below!

    Tuesday, July 23, 2019

    Planning A Bookish Tea Party

    I love party planning, especially for fictional parties where the possibilities are endless. I also love books, and it's fun to dream about combining my interests into an exciting evening. So today I'm taking time to plan the perfect bookish tea party! I'd invite over my favorite fictional characters for snacks, games, and maybe even a movie. Here's the breakdown:

    1. Guests
         I think an appropriate number would be no more than 10 people. I've narrowed it down to the following:
    1. Samantha Lee from Under a Painted Sky
    2. Mercy Wong from Outrun the Moon
    3. Audrey Rose Wadsworth from Stalking Jack the Ripper
    4. Mei from American Panda
    5. Megan from The Mother-Daughter Book Club
    6. Cameron Morgan from the Gallagher Girls series
    7. Hermione and Luna from Harry Potter
    8. Gigi from Smart Girls Get What They Want
    9. Kate from Vengeance Road
    I think they'd enjoy meeting each other!

    3. Food
    Online, people light refreshments for tea parties, or food that fits onto one (tiny) saucer. Here's what I have so far:

    Image result for raindrop cake
    • Sandwiches (cucumber & turkey)
    • Those yummy skewers of fruit/vegetables that don't really fill you up and are pointless but aesthetic
    • A cream cheese-and-Triscuit platter (I think I'm the only one crazy about this lol)
    • Tea with boba, lychee jelly, and other toppings. They'd still be served in teacups, so the girls could try out all the flavors they'd like!
    • Mini raindrop cakes for dessert!

    The menu is unconventional, but most of these girls are from the past, so it'd be fun to introduce them to boba and raindrop cakes. 

    4. Games (this isn't really an element of tea parties but I'm including it anyways)
    Bookish bingo! Instead of numbers, there'd be characters on the bingo board, and if I read a description of that character, they'd get to mark it. I think a good prize would be a watch, because it's something classy that all the girls could use.

    5. Potential Movies?
    Chaalbaaz, a cheesy-ish but lovable Bollywood film. Well, either that or Jab We Met, which is one of Gigi's favorites already!

    Too bad this party won't really happen, but a girl can dream! Who would you invite to a bookish tea party? What would you eat? Or, have you fantasized about a video game, etc. party? Tell me below!

    Monday, July 15, 2019

    Pretty Book Covers From my TBR List

    There's nothing more satisfying than an amazing story with beautiful cover art. After all, if I'm going to buy a book, it better look good! Also, though they shouldn't be, book covers and titles seem to be the most influential factors for me to pick up a book in the first place. So today, I'm taking time to mention beautiful book covers from my TBR list.

    36086513 3561431433224061 17756559 36492488  42815556 24485589. sy475   37539001. sx318   36613718. sy475

    What are your favorite book covers? Tell me below!

    Friday, July 12, 2019

    My Latest Polymer Clay Creations

    For the past few months, I haven't been able to create much due to school, finals, and hecticness. However, I did get some time this week to sculpt Audrey Rose Wadsworth (!), and I haven't showcased a couple of my older creations. So here they are, enjoy!
    Her hair's kinda wacky :). It started falling apart so that's why it looks a little awkward on the left.

    In honor of Aladdin.

    She's one of the first ones I used a face on! I'm trying to get the courage to try out faces more, but they're a bit difficult.

    She's not really based off anything, I just pictured a really pretty white dress and wanted to try that out.
    And one of my favorites, Audrey Rose Wadsworth! She's from Escaping from Houdini, which I reviewed here. 10/10 would recommend!
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    Cover Courtesy of Goodreads

    I don't know if it's visible, but her dress shimmers! I was also a bit adventurous with her and used a new technique for her hair. I think it's better than my usual ringlets, so I'll be experimenting with hairstyles even more.

    What did you think? Any favorites? Any suggestions? Have you worked with polymer clay before? Tell me below! More of my polymer clay creations can be found here.

    Tuesday, July 9, 2019

    Top Ten Tuesday: Character Archetypes I Love and Hate

    The Hostess
    There's no way to escape tropes; they're in books, movies, and tv shows. And while sometimes they can be annoying, some tropes do end up being successful. So here are my top ten worst and least favorite character archetypes (which are basically tropes) in literature, with some examples.

    All covers are courtesy of Goodreads.

    1. Chosen One
    Of course I had to start with this trope! Even though it's used so much, I don't really care. It excites me that you could live life normally until one day, everything changes.
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    Hear that Hogwarts? I'm still waiting...
    2. Selfless hero(ine)
    Look, I get trying to save some people, but why would you want to save the villain when they're still clearly trying to kill you?! I'm sorry, but I hate it when characters are overly selfless. 
    Tris cared too much about Caleb. The end killed me.
    3. Damsel in distress
    No way, not in this century. The independent, strong woman is way more awesome. 
    The women in Julius Caesar are pretty much all reliant on their husbands (one kills herself when she thinks her husband dies). I know the play was written for the audience of that time period, but it's annoying because we're still reading Shakespeare in this time period.
    4. Hero's Mentor
    They're gonna die anyways, so it's better not to get too attached. Some also seem omnipotent/ultra-wise, and I hate characters knowing things before the reader.

    5. The Traumatized Villain
    If there's a really good story, then I'd like to hear it. Mostly, though, villains are traumatized over the dumbest things!

    6. The Loyal Friend of the Hero
    Thomas Cresswell is just the best, y'all.
    Yay, friendship! This is crucial in mysteries and fantasy the most. It's great that the hero can rely on someone in their crazy life. It's even better if the friend undergoes some transformation along with the hero for bonus character growth. 

    7.  The Frenemy
    I think this is more of a middle grade thing, but the sarcastic frenemy provides A+ entertainment. They're usually ridiculous and aren't to be taken seriously.
    Jasper was hilarious. He also had appreciable character growth, transitioning from being an annoying, jealous brat to a loyal friend.
    8. The Hormonal Teen
    I actually don't like the way teens are portrayed in media, too. They're not all crazy or drug addicts. 

    9.  The Traitor
    This trope is overused, and traitors are kind of predictable. There should be better ways of introducing conflict.

    10.  The Superhero
    Reading about people learning new powers is the closest I'll get to learning them *sigh*. 

    So that's it for this week. Did you recognize these archetypes? Which tropes do you like/dislike (here's a list of even more to choose from)? Tell me below!

    Sunday, July 7, 2019

    Applications of Quantum Mechanics

    I started researching a bit about quantum mechanics and discovered a lot of cool things, most of which prove everything we believe to be false and seriously makes me question what I've learned for the past years in school. Regardless, I started thinking about some theories quantum mechanics covers and how we can similarly apply them to our world. Most of the applications of these theories are on a minute level, but I'll be sharing something you might find a bit interesting toward the end.

    Before we get my idea, you need to know the concept behind size. Right now, you consider size to be relative; ex. your phone is tiny compared to Mt. Rushmore, but your phone is huge compared to an ant.

    However, Dirac was a physicist who came up with an absolute definition of size, aka some objects will always be big, and others will always be small. He said that if you can observe an object without disturbing it (a negligible disturbance), then the object is big. If you must make a nonnegligible disturbance, aka alter it somehow, to observe it, then the object is small.

    You're probably thinking that this is kind of weird...I mean, can't we observe everything without disturbing it? Well, you'd be right in the sense of classical mechanics. We can measure things like rocks, watch birds fly, and drool over food without disturbing them. In fact, everything in classical mechanics can be big with this definition.

    However, we can't really observe things like the movements of photons, because simply looking at what they're doing actually forces their wavefunctions to collapse (basically, photons act differently when we watch them and when we don't...cool, right?!). This concept of being small applies for objects at the quantum level, which sets up the difference between quantum and classical mechanics.

    With this floating around in my head, I was walking around and caught my sister playing video games. I started to wonder if what she was doing was actually important, then realized that importance is also usually relative. Maybe that video game was important to her because it gave her a break, but I might think she was being counterproductive.

    Is there a way to make importance absolute?

    Here's my idea: If something makes a negligible disturbance in your life, then it's not important. If something makes a nonnegligible (aka significant) disturbance on your life, then it is important.

    This might sound like the way you already define if something is important or not. But think about it-this is absolute. Now no one can tell you that playing video games is not important if you can prove the game makes a nonnegligible disturbance on your life.

    I know this a bit of a deviation from my usual posts, but I hope you enjoyed it! Are there any other abstract ideas you consider to be relative, but can find an absolute definition for? Did you have fun reading this post? Tell me below!

    For similar posts, check out my properties of happiness molecules or diffusing the tension posts :)

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