A Different Time, A Different Place.

She wished she was born at a different time. A time where fashion was different and you could travel without being scared to board a plane. A time of refinement.  Of course, you might be traveling by horse and buggy, but that was ok with her. She longed for courtship and tea with neighbors, out on the veranda looking at a big old oak tree. But this was not the case as she boarded the subway to the city.

Overcrowded and smelly, the subway provided excellent people watching as well as fast transportation. She gazed around and held on to the strap above her head. Listening to Miles Davis, it suddenly stopped and a voice came into her headphones. “Do not be alarmed, look to your left” said the voice. She slowly looked to the left and her eyes widened.

She saw a man that was sharply dressed in what looked like the 1850’s. He smiled at her and everything around her became blurry. He walked over to her and held out his hand. She took it before she passed out. She woke up and yelled at the top of her lungs.

“HELP!! SOMEONE HELP!!” she yelled. She looked around the room and noticed the antique furniture. Wait what was she wearing? A corset and ballgown. She muttered a few obscenities. The same man from the train walked in. ” What is wrong? ” he inquired.

Then a woman walked in and brought a tray filled with biscuits, fruit, and juice. He turned around and started to leave but said ” Don’t forget we have the ball at the Wellington’s tonight.” She shook her head to try to clear the fog. Ball? Next thing she knew someone was dressing her in an extravagant dress and putting her hair up.

“Do I know you?” she asked the woman who was helping her. The woman looked shocked and shook her head. ” Only since you were born” and smiled. She looked around for signs of anything familiar. Then the woman pulled her down what seemed like a ton of stairs and put a fur wrap around her shoulders and pinched her cheeks. Then the woman said, ” there .. a little color never hurt anyone.”

The carriage door opened then she fell over a rock and blacked out. She woke up on the subway but was sitting down. She frantically looked around her and a man turned around from the seat in front of her and tipped his hat. “Are you ok? Or did you want to go back?” he asked. “Go back?” she asked as she rubbed her confused eyes.

Not Your Regularly Scheduled Programming

Communication Series.


As a child, my parents always watched the news at certain times of the day to see what was happening locally and globally. I, myself, find that I am tuning in to certain channels and applications on my smartphone to see what is happening around the world. As adults, we have most likely found what channel we relate too or who shares our views on certain issues. The “objective truth” is what one expects to be reported on a news channel. This is most certainly not the case. Agenda-setting theory is all around us, and we don’t even know it. For Bernard Cohen once said, “the media may not tell us what to think, but they are stunningly successful in telling us what to think about”.

Agenda-setting theory is the theory that the mass news media have a large influence on audiences by their choice of what stories to consider newsworthy and how much prominence and space to give them. CITE Find intro McCombs and shaw It is mostly used as a tool that influences public opinion by setting the agenda by emphasizing certain issues in the public sphere. Cite This is important as the information in the mass media may be the only source we have to determine the importance of the latest issues. And will the recent election, the months leading up to it, and even now, what was the actual truth of headlines ran in the media?

Political or local elections is what I have found to be the most prevalent platforms for this certain theory. In the initial study done in 1972 by the famous McCombs & Shaw, they examined the salience or importance of issues that correlate with the media’s agenda to the agenda of the public. The research started with the presidential election of 1968. As I am old and forgetful, I had to see who was running against each other. It was Nixon V. Humphrey. The media has a way of cramming attention for certain issues or problems. To sum up the study, around 100 Chapel Hill voters were asked what issued matter to them, regardless of who they hand in mind to vote for. The media then started to analyze the results which led to local and nation newspapers and TV news to publish stories tailor-made regarding how the presidential candidates felt about those certain topics. This could be anything from foreign policy, law, civil rights, and fiscal policy. (McCombs and Shaw p. 179)

To quote Land and Lang, “they build up public images of political figures. They are constantly presenting objects suggesting what individuals in the mass should think about, know about, and have feelings about.” (McCombs & Shaw, 1972) Any time you watch a news channel, this is so. You see polls, charts, experts on the field, photographs, interviews and so on. Even if you are not an avid news fan or a fan of politics, it does give you things to think about. For instance, Hillary Clintons email scandal, or her lack of emotion for leaving soldiers to die in Benghazi, were all over the news last year. More prominent as of late. Did you think about her or her character during this time? Absolutely, and with seeing this on every channel, it was drilled into our minds. As human beings, we remember the negative connotations most of the time. The influence or impact that agenda-setting can have on the way we think, is called “priming”.

Priming is the impact that agenda setting can have on the way individuals evaluate public officials, by influencing the thematic areas or issues that individuals use to form their evaluation. (Kim et al. 2002) For me most recently, priming was the frequency and the emphasis of the same news story, and how the images were put in my head to think about. Your thoughts can become very one-sided, it is best to review the facts of a story.

The question is really who sets the media agenda? What is an agenda? An agenda involves communication and objects which are public issues or concerns. Objects vary in salience, and what is “newsworthy.” The placement of important stories usually headline a show, and in our minds, we quietly think of this as important, because they led with it.

Next, let’s discuss NFO (need for orientation) and how it correlates to mass media and agenda-setting. McCombs & Weaver (put first names) conceived the publics need to familiarize themselves with the environment through the mass media as a need for orientation (NFO). We know what we like or hold important when we tune into the news. People have the need, and seek to be and stay informed of what is going on around the world. People with high relevance and high uncertainty, along with high NFO, are more likely to expose themselves to media. (McCombs & Weaver, 1973). By emphasizing certain stories or attributes to a headline, the media can place the importance of headlines in our minds. Or, what attributes are salient in our minds. Salience is the quality of being important, or prominent. To be honest, I have never heard of this term, so it added to my vocabulary, and I will be using it quite a bit!

In later years, this theory was researched more, and more insight was added. As this theory grew, trends started to rise and account for the steady occurrence of media agenda and its impact on public agenda. The original McCombs and Shaw’s basic agenda-setting theory was if you will, the benchmark which led to the contingent settings that enhance or limit media agenda setting, with emphasis on the explanation for agenda setting.


Camaj, L. (2014). Need for Orientation, Selective Exposure, and Attribute Agenda-Setting Effects. Mass Communication and Society, 17(5), 689-712. doi:10.1080/15205436.2013.8354

What If I had.. What If I said..

Regret is the root of all evil. She wished she would just stop obsessing over different what-ifs scenarios from the past 25 years. What if she stayed in the military? What if she had never enlisted? What if she had studied harder in high school? Often she tells herself that it does not solve anything. Are we born to worry? She had spent decades thinking before she went to bed about things she had done wrong in her past, and it wrecked her sleep and consumed her dreams. She had become a slave to her inner judgment. She was done.

She decided to take drive the long way to work and actually stop and smell the flowers. Actual flowers. There was a nursery a few miles from where she lived. She missed the last step on the stairs from her front porch and fell right on her face. She laid in the grass and dirt face down and gently raised herself up and dusted herself off. “Not today,” she said to herself. She had some scraped knees and walked it off.

She turned her key in the ignition and backed out of the driveway. As she drove down the road she smiled and knew her life would change after today. She would be mentally stronger and healthier. Her car started to veer to the right and she pulled over. ” No, this cannot be happening,” she yelled. Her right front tire was flat. She took a deep breath and gathered her thoughts. She grabbed her purse and walked. Nothing was going to slow her down.

She smelled the fresh air and looked over the fields as she walked the last mile to her flowery destination. She was smiling and then looked up and her smile faded when she felt a raindrop hit her nose. She was going to stay positive although she knew it was coming.

And it came.. the rain, the absolute pouring rain. Her purse was rainproof and she just kept her forward path to the nursery. For most people, the rain would be an inconvenience, especially when their car has broken down. Trying to get her mind healthy took many years, and it would start and stop. It would keep going over the past and other roads she could have taken.

She saw the roof of the nursery peek over the hill and she started to run towards it. Tears ran down her face, and it was freeing. She picked up speed and ran up to the door and it the sign said CLOSED FOR THE DAY. She ran crying all around and knocking on the windows. She fell backward over a brick and rolled over. Over into a bed of wildflowers and, she laid there and looked up at the sky. Her tears and the rain washed all of the muddiness of her past away and cleansed her being. She rolled back over and inhaled deeply, then fell asleep with no regrets, no nightmares, no what-ifs.


What Do You Want From Me?

She looked in the mirror and thought how tired and weary she looked. She often wondered why she couldn’t shut her mind off at night, and why the medicine she was given to sleep wasn’t working. She splashed some cold water on her face and psyched herself up to face the day.

Outside the sky was dark and gloomy, it started to rain, and she yelled at the sky. A black car passed by and slowed down, then drove away.  Her brain processed that as weird but filed it away in the “weird happenings file” somewhere else in her head.  She ran to open her car door in the pouring rain.  Twenty-One Pilots came blared out of the radio, she turned it down and turned on the shield wipers. Rolling her eyes, she backed out and drove to a job she hated.

Slowly rolling to a four way stop, she felt a crash from behind and her head whipped back and forth. She stumbled out, and before losing consciousness, she saw the black car from this morning. She woke up and couldn’t move her hands or breathe well. As her eyes came into focus, she smelled dirt and gasoline.

Waiting what seemed a lifetime for her eyes to focus, she saw a gasoline lamp and a bucket. She finally was able to spit out the cloth in her mouth. That was about the time when a man in a black cape walked in the room and untied her arms. “Only to use the bathroom” he said. He tied her back up when she was done using the bucket. “Why am I here?” she asked. “Just give it to us, and we might let you go.” ” Give you what? What the hell? Who are you?”  She was trying to memorize anything she could about this man, she could not see his face, only white eyes, until he punched her jaw.

She spit out blood as she turned her head and thought hard about what she could have. “I do not know what you want please tell and..” another person walked in. It was a female dressed in all black too that spoke in a different language. Were they speaking in tongues? She came over and kicked her in the ribs.  “I don’t know what you want!! Tell me!” she cried out in pain.

She woke up in a chair tied down with countless people surrounding her. Speaking that language. She couldn’t make out anything. Everyone was in those black capes. No human skin showing. “CUT” yelled the director.


The Skin You’re In- January 2018 Skincare Review


Let’s talk about Bath and Body Works. I was walking in the local mall with my husband, and gasped when I saw sheet masks in the window. When did this happen? Are they trying to keep up with everyone else?  What can this mask bring that the others can’t?

“Keep it Fruity” Mask $4.95

This is a skin mask for all skin types, is left on for 10-15 minutes and advises it a skin brightening mask. This mask smelled great and was easy to put on, and you are to massage the residue left over when you take it off. I did not notice anything when I took this mask off.  Key ingredients: Papaya +Tea Extracts

“If You Shea So” Mask $4.95

 This mask is for all skin types and advises it will nourish skin throughout winter. This product is to be left on for 10-15 minutes.  This sheet mask smelled great and my skin felt soft after. Key ingredients: Shea Butter +JoJoboa Oil

I do not recommend these sheet masks. Although they care cute and maybe fun for a young girl’s sleepover, if you are serious about skin care, really know your skin type and problem areas.


Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask by Glow Recipe $ 45.00 2.7 oz/80 mL

I purchased this product from Sephora. And am I so glad I did. I cannot live without it now. I have used it for around 6 weeks. My skin is glowing and 100% softer. This product can be used for all skin types.

When you open the box, product separation is normal, so shake the product well. It comes with a small spoon, and a little goes along way. Directions advise to pat in and not rub, wash thoroughly in the morning. It does have a warning that your skin may be sensitive to skin when using this product. I for one am of an age (although everyone should) that I use sunscreen and a hat if I am going to be in the sun.

This product smells amazing, helps to exfoliate skin and clarify pores.

Key Ingredient: Peony Root

I highly recommend this product and will purchase it repeatedly until I can no more!


Double Dare Peel Off Mask

I purchased this product from Dillard’s, and then continued to order it from Doubledarespa.com

I purchased the OM! Mega Hair Band (so stinkin’ cute), the Platinum Hot Pink Mask Kit, and then continue to order every color, after I tried the first one out! These masks are 8.50 each for a three-part mask, and the head band was $8.00.

The first part is a Detox Bubbling Sheet Mask which is left on for 3 minutes. The detox mask has apple antioxidants.

The second part is the color mask which you can apply with the brush (if you buy it), or a small facial spatula.  After applying a thin layer, you leave on for 30 minutes. Key ingredients: Rosa Centifolia for moisturizing and Pelargonium for sebum control. Sebum is a waxy and oily substance that is produced by the sebaceous glands on the skin and the hair follicles.

The third and final part is the serum pad. This removes any leftover peel off mask and has a moisturizing complex. Key ingredients: Collagen for suppleness and Adenosine for anti-aging.

I highly to the sky recommend this product. There are many more products too!



Beauty Bar 24k Golden Pulse Facial Massager $11.99

I purchased this product from Amazon.

This product claims to help firm skin for an instant facelift, as well as 6,000 rotations per minute. I use this product to depuff my eyes. There are many of these out there, from cheap to expensive. I found mine cheap, there is also the same one for over $75 on Amazon as well.  I have heard these are at Wal-Mart too. I had to watch a video on it to see how it is done. Most people use it with their moisturizer. It says to use for 3-5 minutes daily.

I have noticed a difference the second week. Anything I can do to help the aging process I will do!

Where Will You Be On That Day?

His chest felt heavy when he woke up. He sat on the side of the bed and rubbed his chest slowly as to get his thoughts together. Mentally, he performed a checklist in his head of his kids and wife, the bills, his job. All were ok. Then he rubbed his temples, and his breath hitched. Slowly, he put his head between his knees and took long slow breathes.

His wife leaned across the bed and scratched his back. He told her he loved her and stood up and walked to take a shower. The dread continued throughout the morning as he worked at his office downtown. He kept the news playing in the background..he could listen to it and continue to work. It was soothing to him.

His computer lost connection to the internet, so he kept refreshing the page. The power went out and every electronic item sounded their last beep. “HEY!” he yelled and looked out of his office window. His phone went off with an emergency alert. All he read before running out the door was.. MISSILES FIRED ON THE EASTERN AND WESTERN SEABOA….

Did his wife see this? Where could they go? He ran as fast as he could then stopped. Mass chaos consumed the streets. Could he get home? Not by driving. He ran two blocks over and broke a window to the bike shop. He sure as hell would pedal home. The screaming and yelling at drivers was clouding his mind as he weaved in and out of traffic. He hoped his wife and children were somewhere safe, but where could that be? He turned the corner and a blast fro…

His chest felt heavy when he woke up. He sat on the side of the bed and rubbed his chest slowly as to get his thoughts together.

No no no.. not again.