Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Current status: Brett Bodner is going to be up all night writing this editorial. Does this have any impact on the world around me? I think not.

Social media is slowly taking over the lives of the millions of people who use it on a daily basis. It seemed like a good idea at first, but now looking at what it has turned into, it clearly is one of the worst things ever invented.

“Hand over your data, your life, your … soul. And enjoy eternal life in the social media universe,” said a recent Chicago Tribune article in regards to Facebook. However I say take back your life and get off Facebook.

Facebook forever changed the scene of social media when it broke out onto the scene in 2004. It gave people the opportunity to make their own profiles and to add people as “friends” so you can then see their profile. Twitter also came about five years ago and is very similar to Facebook’s statuses.

Facebook leaves nothing to the imagination anymore. You can discover so much personal information about a person just from going on their profile. People disclose almost anything over Facebook and Twitter. Phone numbers, addresses, relationship status, job status, it is all out there for the world to see.

To make things worse, people post statuses as if what they’re doing is the most important thing in the world at the moment. For example, one tweet I just read on twitter read “Spending a night in reading. Perfect end to a long and satisfying day. #winning.”

Comedian Lewis Black talked about Twitter in his last stand up special Stark Raving Black, “Where do you get the massive ego to think anybody gives a s*** what you’re doing!? If you’re describing what you’re doing then you’re not doing it!” and he could not have said it any better.

Currently there are over 750 million people that have Facebook accounts and according to BBC News, 200 million people have twitter accounts. In other words, Facebook has as many users as the United States, Canada, Russia, and Mexico population combined.

That is an absurd number of people.

When did we as people become so narcissistic that we feel that need to broadcast our lives on social media platforms for the world to read about?

The Chicago Tribune article also reported that Facebook had big changes on the horizon where you will be able to watch music videos, shop, and read the newspaper all from your Facebook account. When you are doing all of these things, your friends will be able to see what exactly you buy when you’re shopping and what songs your listening too. Basically your life is going to be broadcast even more.

My advice, let’s get out of this social media phase before social media is not just a place where our lives are seen through tweets and status updates, but instead are run by social media outlets.

Tweet this; @world get out while you still can.

Editor’s Note: When my grandfather Frank “Murph” Bodner passed away this past March, there were many things running through my head. I felt both sadness and regret, as I felt I could have been closer with him, which I still do feel. However, after reflecting on what had happened, the bigger picture came into view. The following passage is what I would have said had I given a eulogy on the day of the funeral.

As you all know, I wasn’t exactly the greatest grandchild to Poppy. When my parents divorced 13 years ago, the closeness I had experienced with both sides of the family changed greatly. Since I lived with my mother, I grew even closer with her and her side of the family. I saw my father every other weekend and I didn’t always get to see Poppy. This was something that I take some blame for, but I know the closeness factor is not all on my hands.

When I heard the news that Poppy had passed, I felt complete shock, disbelief, and regret. I felt in these past couple of years, I could have taken it upon myself to form a stronger relationship with him and my father’s side of the family. However, I was never able to do this and I felt terrible because of it.

However, it was during this time of being upset with myself for not being closer with him that I realized something.

Despite the fact we weren’t as close as he was with Billy and Brittany, I knew that he still loved me as much as he loved them. In high school, I played three years of baseball and Poppy showed up at pretty much every home game. When I would struggle or go through slumps, he would be the first one there to offer a helping hand and let me know what I was doing wrong and how I can fix it. Whenever I would spend time with him we would always sit and watch sports on TV. Whether it was baseball, horse racing, college basketball, football, etc, we would always watch it. Pop was a big reason as to why I love sports as much as I do. Sometimes when I was over he would even put on hockey for me because he knew I liked it, even though he was not a big fan of it.

Another thing he did was encouraged me to get good grades in school. When I did receive good grades and I’d tell him he always answered with a “That-a-way” and it made me feel happy. No matter what happened over the years I always felt that I made him proud.

Something else that made me feel some comfort and solace was seeing several old pictures of him holding me as a baby with a big smile on his face. It just showed the love that was there, as he showed to many of you who are here today.

Even though I may not have had the same strong bond many others did with him, I still loved him just as much as everyone else did. He was the only grandfather I ever knew and I’m very grateful for all the time spent with him when I was little right up until the times I saw him in recent years.

Pop, I am very sorry that I wasn’t there more but I believe that I’ll see you again one day and that we can make up for lost time. I feel like there is so much about him I didn’t know and that there is so much about me that he also didn’t know. I hope one day to get that opportunity.

Thank you so much for everything over the years and for being my #1 fan for me in high school. I will always love you and I’ll keep you in my heart always.

Post Script: For now I can walk away with a lesson out of all of this. Time here is very short and precious. I hope I can learn from this and try to re-build relationships on my father’s side of the family including a relationship with my own father, which has been bumpy over the years to say the least. I have aunts, uncles, and cousins who I barely know. If I could change this I would and it’s not too late to. So far I’ve done a lousy job of trying to do this, but I know that it can be done. It just takes a little more effort on my part and I believe that I will one day make this happen. Only time will tell.

PPS: I wanted to publish this a while ago, but I figured Father’s Day would be the perfect time to do so.

The Return

Posted: May 10, 2011 in Uncategorized

Back in Black

Hello Everyone,

Now that my sophomore year of college is now complete and I have four months off from school, I’d say it’s about time to get back to work on this site. During the school year all of my writing goes into my school newspaper called “The Outlook”. I’m still trying to figure out a way to link all of my stories from the year onto this site. I may just have to copy and paste it all onto here which could take a little while. In the mean time, I attached a link to the site on the sidebar under links and I’ll attach a link here as well http://outlook.monmouth.edu/. You can click on this link and go through some of the archived issues if you’d like, until I get all of my articles onto the site. Keep an eye out for some new content and I look forward to getting this site up and running again.

Love you all,

Brett

On October 5, metalcore band Bring Me The Horizon released their third full length album There is a Hell Believe Me I’ve Seen It, There is a Heaven Lets Keep It a Secret. Bring Me The Horizon is slowly turning into one of the most popular bands in their genre thanks to their wild live performances and nonstop touring. This summer, they played on the main stage of Warped Tour 2010, which is a very big deal and a huge accomplishment. This album is only going to give them an even bigger push in popularity and establish them as one of the best metal bands around.

Bring Me The Horizon wanted to mix up their sound a little bit on this album and that is exactly what they did. In addition to the heavy riffs, thundering drums, and the trademark scream of frontman Oliver “Oli” Sykes, the band added more electronic soundscapes, orchestral melodies, and choirs. The album also features some mellow songs, which is uncharacteristic of the band. The album also features guest vocals from electro-pop singer Lights, You Me At Six lead singer Josh Franceschi, and screamer Josh Scogin. All the songs on the album were written by Oli Sykes and the lyrics are based on personal struggles he has had to deal with. In an interview with Alternative Press, Sykes said “The main idea isn’t about literal heaven and hell, but the heaven and hell inside of us”.

This album was also the first for new rhythm guitarist Jona Weinhofen, who joined the band in March 2009 after formed rhythm guitarist Curtis Ward decided to leave the band for personal reasons. Weinhofen brings a different element to the band and along with lead guitarist Lee Malia, the two shred it up and have a stellar performance on the album.

The band matured on this album, as they have improved in every area from their previous records. The lyrics, instrumentals, and the overall sound of the band has gotten so much better. All of this can be heard right off the bat with the opening song “Crucify Me”. The song sets the tone for the entire album with its amazing contrast. The tempo of the song goes from being aggressively heavy to a mellower sound, thanks to the help of a choir and the beautiful guest vocals of Lights.

On the first single off the album, “It Never Ends”, Malia and Weinhofen supply some heavy guitar riffs, in addition to a classical undertone and once again, a choir. The song sums up the theme of the album and you can just hear the passion in Sykes’s voice as he sings the lyrics.

Lights is also featured another time on the album on the sad song “Don’t Go”. The song has a very melancholy tone to it and it is without a doubt the softest song the band has ever players, which shows the maturation of the band. Sykes’s has an outstanding performance on the track and it is definitely one of his best.

Not only did Sykes’s have a great performance on the album, but the rest of the band was impressive as well. On songs like “Anthem”, “Alligator Blood”, and “Home Sweet Hole”, the bands heavy sound of old can be heard. Drummer Matt Nichols keeps the tempos high with his quick drumming style, including the frequent use of a double bass peddle. Nichols and bass player Matt Kean helped set the stage for Malia and Weinofen electrifying riffs and Oli Sykes’s shrill singing.

You Me At Six’s lead singer Josh Franceschi sings guest vocals on what appears to be the next single of the album, in a track title “F***”. The song has a lot of meaning and is one of heaviest songs on the record. It deals with Sykes’s relationship problems of never being able to see his girlfriend.

The most passionate song on the album is a song called “Blacklist”. The song displays the skills of Nichols and Kean, as it is very bass and drum heavy. The song acknowledges the departure of former rhythm Curtis Ward and how he left the band. It is without a doubt the harshest song on the album and is brutal both musically and lyrically.

One of the most interesting pieces on this album was an instrumental song title “Memorial”. The song consists of a constant pulse with some electric sounds in addition to it, along with some other chords. It gives a nice little intro into the next song called “Blessed With A Curse”. Sykes’s is once again on the top of his game with this song and the contrast of heavy and light can be seen here again.

The album concludes with a fast paced closer, with the help of metal singer Josh Scogin. This song is one that metal fans will bang their heads to and both Sykes and Grogin growl leads to a bang of a conclusion to an outstanding album.

Bring Me The Horizon have evolved with the release of There is a Hell Believe Me I’ve Seen It, There is a Heaven Lets Keep in a Secret. They are definitely coming into their own with this record and their popularity is slowly starting to rise. Their album debuted at #17 overall on the U.S. Billboard chart, which is an impressive feat for a metal band. It is only a matter of time before these guys will be considered kings of the metal world and will be able to establish themselves as one of the most successful bands around.

A Personal Note On Grudges

Posted: June 24, 2010 in Uncategorized

Normally, my articles are going to be concerned with topics like sports, music, movies, and television. However, from time to time I will post personal stories as well. Like they say, writing is like therapy and it is a good place to air out anger and frustrations or even just to clear your head. So the following is just that; me clearing my head of frustrations and things that have been bothering me.

The first thing I would like to discuss is what I find to be the greatest weakness within myself, which is the fact that I hold grudges. Most the time if people wrong me, I’m very quick to turn my back on them and hold my anger towards them for a very long time. It is not a good thing at all, but I struggle to let things go.

For example, say you have a solid group of friends but then something happens; Something like,  you barely hear from them anymore and that pisses you off a lot. I would be pissed off for a long time about it, especially if they think that the problem is not them, but the thought of the fact that “you don’t like them”.

It could even be something that happened in the past with an ex-girlfriend. Maybe you went through a bad break-up and one of the people moved on way faster than the other and lied a lot.

Yes both happened to me and I’m not going to sugar coat them because they both bother me greatly. In fact, the ex-girlfriend one bothers me so much that it affects the way I go about things now with other girls and friends.

Since these events that occurred nearly a year ago, I do not hesitate now to turn my back on people and kick them out of my life. It started then and it has occurred in certain other situations since then. Now whenever people wrong me in any sort of way, even if they are sorry, I’m quick to turn my back and hold bitter feelings towards them.

This is something that I would love to change, but I’m not sure how. It’s easier said than done when people tell you to just drop it and let it go. Because whenever you are reminded of the what happened in the past, you still feel the feelings you felt then, because somethings are just hard to forget about.

For two people that have wronged me in the past, I will never forget what they did or what happened so it is very difficult to let go of it. Especially one that was very life changing when I learned of the events that happened. One of the people I no longer speak too, while one we are trying to start over and rebuild a strong bond, but who knows if this will occur. It’s going to take a lot of hard work and effort on both sides, but nothing is impossible

Holding grudges is something that has got to be understandable to some extent, but it is still not right. For instance, if a person has wronged you or hurt you in the past whose to say they will not do it again?

I understand people make mistakes and they should be given another shot. There have been grudges that I have let go of before. If the person apologizes in a sincere manner and admits to their mistake, then I believe they can be forgiven and I let go of whatever mistake they made in the past.

However, with several of the grudges I still hold today, the people have not apologized nor have admitted to being even a little wrong. Is this why I still hold onto a grudge? It’s part of it. The other parts I’m uncertain about, which is why I’m writing this article.

If only I could learn to let things go, it would make me a better person and in my opinion would allow for more good to enter my life. Yes, it is very possible to have a better life without a certain person in it, but it is not good nor healthier to hold an angry grudge against them. The best thing would be to leave what happened with you and that person in the past and move on and forget about it.

Although I struggle letting go of grudges there a certain things that I understand. I understand that bad stuff is going to happen in life and there is nothing you can do to stop it. People are going to let you down, even ones you care about. Hopefully it can be fixed, if both sides are willing to try. Sometimes it won’t be fixed, but hey it is just a part of life.

On a more positive note, you will always have a select people you can turn to no matter what. There is always that one or two friends you know you can always count on and they will always be there. You also can not forget about your family either. Luckily for me, I know I can always turn to my family and the brothers in my fraternity if I ever needed anything at all. I’m also lucky to have about three or four friends I know I can count on no matter what.

Maybe writing about my grudge holding will help me bury this once and for all and maybe one day I will be able to let go of all my grudges, but it will take a lot of time and effort.

On another note, I would like to say if anyone I have turned my back on is reading this or anyone else I have held a grudge against is reading this, my ears are always open for discussion, but due to my stubbornness and my pride I will not be the one to start it.

As a good friend once told me, maybe it’s the Italian in me for why I’m like this. Whatever it is, I hope one day to truly let go of all my grudge holding and leave the past in the past and keep my head focused on the future.