A Somewhat Brief Appreciation Of Denver Nuggets Point Guard Jamal Murray

Three trivia questions: Who is the first NBA player to score 50 points in a game without attempting a free throw? Who was drafted by the Denver Nuggets after his first year at the University of Kentucky? Who has a silver medal from the 2015 Pan American Games? If your answer to all three questions is Jamal Murray, you are correct!

Jamal, a Pisces, was born on February 23, 1997, in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada. His parents are Silvya and Roger Murray. Roger was a basketball player and track and field athlete himself, which is something that I believe shaped Jamal into the person he is today.

There are things that lead me to suspect that Jamal was born wearing a basketball uniform. He began playing at age three and at the age of six he was playing in a league for kids almost twice his age. I am adamant that some sort of magical basketball unicorn has blessed Jamal. That’s the only explanation for why he has been talented his whole life.

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Jamal is all smiles for a headshot (Credit: Denver Stiffts)

His talents continued over to high school, where he won multiple awards. These awards include an MVP recognition at the 2013 Jordan Brand Classic International Game, an MVP recognition at the 2015 Nike Hoop Summit, and an MVP recognition at the 2015 BioSteel All-Canadian Basketball Game. The theory that he was born in a basketball uniform starts to make a lot of extra sense.

At the University of Kentucky, Jamal continued showing his talents that he was given by the magical basketball unicorn. In his first and only year at the university, he earned multiple well-deserved recognitions. What are the recognitions, you may ask? Good question! They are a spot on the Associated Press Third Team All-American roster, a spot on the First Team All-SEC roster, an SEC All-Tournament recognition, and an SEC All-Freshman recognition.

Not only has Jamal been born in a basketball uniform and blessed by a magical basketball unicorn, but he is a magical unicorn himself! The unicorn is blue with white wings with red maples leaves all over them. The unicorn’s horn is platinum with pearls in them. The left front hoof is gold with amethysts, the right front hoof is sterling silver with sapphires, the left rear hoof is bronze with diamonds, and the right rear hoof is rose gold with emeralds. Lastly, there is a Canadian flag on the unicorn’s forehead. That has got to be the most descriptive unicorn analogy ever presented.

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Jamal is in a really great mood after a really great play (Credit: Sky Sports)

Ever since Jamal started playing professional basketball after his freshman year of college, he has been proving his awesomeness. His statistics include 611 three-point field goals; 759 free throws; 1,292 two-point field goals; 1,903 field goals; and 1,182 total rebounds. He’s one of the very best point guards to ever play for the Denver Nuggets. Change my mind. He’s the most magical unicorn in the team’s history.

Recently, this past Friday to be exact, Jamal made history! He scored fifty points, which is an extremely impressive feat in and of itself. There’s another wonderful fact about his fifty-point game: not a single free throw attempted or completed! That is the first time anyone in the National Basketball Association has ever completed this feat. You heard right! Jamal is literally the first player in the history of the National Basketball Association to score fifty points without a single free throw attempt. That is the best start to the weekend anyone could ask for.

I really admire Jamal’s leadership. After an interview last summer when he was getting ready to play basketball after the pandemic forced the association to go on a months-long hiatus, he wanted to listen to the media give their perspectives on racism before exiting the Zoom call. It shows that he likes to listen to many perspectives and wants people to have a voice. He’s a good example of how to show leadership skills, on and off the court. I’d love to be around an amazing member of society like him.

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Jamal does an archery pose (Credit: BSN Denver)

Denver Nuggets until the day I die! Blue Arrow Bubbas! Keep up the great work, Jamal!







My Struggle With Severe Depression

CONTENT AND TRIGGER WARNINGS: Mental Illness and Suicide

Picture this: You have absolutely zero energy in the morning. Even doing activities you enjoy, like drawing or swimming, sound like daunting chores you want to avoid doing if you can help it. You either want to eat a six-course meal to drown out your sadness, or get nauseous at the thought of eating a simple apple wedge. Either you’re a professional insomniac or you just want to sleep for the rest of your life. You feel like the future is bleak, hopeless, and destined to be doomed. Your emotional state has deteriorated to the point where you wish you weren’t living on this planet anymore. These symptoms last for two to six weeks, and it consumes your life.

This is what it’s like to live with severe depression. From what I remember, I have struggled with depression since I was in the fourth grade. At one point I would cry every single day. I had a hard time having fun at school. I was very upset about school being closed due to a major blizzard. The cafeteria staff and the physical education teacher were very worried about me.

Feeling depressed or worried over coronavirus? You're not alone - Los  Angeles Times
Depression is a barbaric mental health condition that can affect anyone, anytime, anywhere (Credit: Los Angeles Times)

I felt like the older I got, the worse my depression became. During two school years, specifically the eighth and eleventh grades, I was not in the best place ever. I just felt like I was floating on by and just waiting for summer break to come. In the eleventh grade I absolutely hated school. I only liked a select few classes and seeing friends and acquaintances. I wanted to change schools very badly for my last year of high school. 

The struggles didn’t stop there, however. It went on to affect me during college. The time period between September 25 and October 6, 2016 was a very difficult time to get through. I fell into an intense state of depression the day Jose Fernandez passed away. The next day on campus, I was just really upset. I was panicky, grief-stricken, fatigued, and lethargic. The fact that I was sick with bronchitis at the time made it even worse. That wasn’t my only bad depression moment. During the spring semester of my second year of college, I was in such a difficult state of mind that I wanted to honestly drop out of college.

Academic Pressure: 5 Tips From An Expert On Coping With School Stress |  HuffPost
Depression can make it extremely difficult to concentrate on schoolwork (Credit: HuffPost)

Things came to a tragic head on Tuesday, November 7, 2017. I was absolutely heartbroken about the passing of Roy Halladay. A serious threat on the campus and an argument with a friend tipped me over the edge. After multiple things that had already happened that year, I was just too heartbroken and crushed to continue. That night, when I went to bed,I decided I was going to just give up and end my life. The next day, I went to the university therapist first thing in the morning. Confessing the attempt to take my own life was terrifying. Getting through the rest of the semester felt like an ordeal. 

2019 was also a tough year for my depression. I had suffered from chronic, recurring bouts since New Year’s Day. Things came to a fevered pitch on July 1, 2019, when Tyler Skaggs’ body was discovered in a North Texas hotel. I was really devastated, and that just fueled my already existing depression. I could barely eat and I was already in shock. I was in on-again, off-again crisis for the rest of the month, including thoughts of suicide. That’s when I came to know that I had severe depression.

Here's What People Get Wrong About Depression | NAMI: National Alliance on  Mental Illness
Depression has many symptoms, and is treatable (Credit: NAMI)

To this day, it’s still something that affects me. I have a fluctuating appetite, problematic sleeping habits, lethargy, and am easily irritable. I have been controlling it through better eating habits, medication, therapy, and physical activity. It’s something that will be a part of my life forever, but I am doing what I can to keep it from having a brutal grip.

If you, or someone you know, is in crisis, here are some resources to help:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255

Crisis Text Line: 741-741

Canada’s Crisis Text Line: 686-868

United Kingdom’s Crisis Text Line: 852-58

The Trevor Project: 1-866-488-7386 (Hotline), 678-678 (Text Line)

Trans Lifeline: 1-877-565-8860

I am not sponsored by or affiliated with any of these hotlines

Minor League Baseball Players Are Getting Housing Covered: My Take On It

Back in 2019, I wrote a blog post about how I was of the opinion that Minor League Baseball players deserved much better salaries and quality of life. I recall describing how very little the people are paid. In addition, recently, I have seen minor league baseball players speak out about the ugly truth about their day to day lives in their road to the major leagues, from low paychecks to mediocre meals.

There has been a big change as of late. Recently, it has been announced that some Minor League Baseball players will have their housing covered. I am beyond happy to hear about this. These humans deserve to have financial burdens lessened substantially, at least from my perspective. If I were in the shoes of one of these athletes, figuring out paying for housing, food, and other living expenses while getting a not-very-substantial paycheck would be brutal on my mental and financial health.

This is only the beginning, though. I really hope that this leads to more pay for Minor League Baseball players. There has been a petition with Congress in the past to exempt these athletes from the minimum wage law. They did get a raise; however, they still make less money than their counterparts in other sports. This is bothersome in my opinion. Minor Leaguers should be able to afford more than just bologna sandwiches. If they want to be able to enjoy a meal of bacon and eggs from time to time, they deserve to have an income that allows them to afford those foods. If they want to have black bean tacos for lunch every once in a while, they deserve to have an income that lets them have that. If they want to treat themselves to Whataburger or Shake Shack on special occasions, they deserve to have an income that lets them treat themselves sometimes.

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Colton Welker’s Hartford Yard Goats headshot (Credit: Minor Leage Baseball)

A major argument that I see is that if these players are unhappy with their quality of life in the minors, then they need to just play better. To be honest, I can see that argument in one sense. In jobs such as working for a food delivery service or working for a nationally recognized engineering firm, hard work and dedication can result in bonuses, raises, or promotions. I’ve heard of instances where fast food restaurant employees go from drive-thru/cashier positions to shift leads. There are instances where people get promoted from, say, sales consultant to sales quality assurance agent.

However, just playing better won’t cut it for many players. In 2015, there was research done that only ten percent of minor leaguers are ever promoted to the major leagues. That leaves ninety percent of minor leaguers stuck there until they are cut or they call it quits themselves. In addition, per some 2019 research, only two out of every nine minor leaguers (which is 22.22 percent, per my calculations) would have had a chance of making it big. Story in short, the odds are stacked against many minor leaguers, despite them playing to the best of their ability. I truly believe that even if there are athletes who are stuck in the minors for literally the entirety of their post-high school or post-higher education baseball careers, they deserve a living wage.

We will be taking a look at the minor league life of Ben Verlander, who is the younger brother of beloved Major League Baseball star Justin Verlander. After getting drafted out of Virginia’s Old Dominion University, Ben signed with Detroit, and traveled down to Florida. He mentions that the housing situation was mediocre at best, with filth and mold all over the place. I wish I could imagine how Ben had felt in the moment. Like Ben, I had always envisioned that minor leaguers had glamorous lives, until I started looking into it more and realized the ugly truth about the actual livelihoods of these people.

Examples of food served to Minor League Baseball players (Credit: SFGate)

Remember, earlier I mentioned that minor leaguers don’t usually get the best of meals. That’s another ugly truth of Ben’s experience. He mentioned playing on teams where the meal situation ranged from getting little to no postgame food to getting decent meals after games. I’m going to be very honest: as an eating disorder survivor, this is very nerve wracking. If players have had body image or self-esteem issues in the past, this can trigger their negative past experiences.

I mentioned in the 2019 post that some minor league baseball players live with the family members of their agents. Ben mentioning living with host families, and he was grateful for that. There is a point, however, where host families are no longer an option, per Ben’s post. I’ve heard of more than one instance were minor league baseball players have to live somewhere with five or six roommates because of the little money that they make. I can relate to that during my apartment hunting experience, as my roommate and I were considering living together in a one-bedroom apartment because of how ridiculous the cost of rent was in the area where we live.

I am very happy that the cost of housing will be one less thing for players to worry about. I am also happy for Ben Verlander for speaking up about the ugly truth of what life if like to be a minor leaguer. I hope that decent wages for minor leaguers come soon, too. This is just my opinion, but being in the minor leagues forever should not mean being forced to pinch pennies.

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Examples of pay that Minor League Baseball Players receive (Credit: Line Up Forms)

What are your thoughts on housing being covered for athletes making their way to the majors? Let me know in the comments below.





The not so glamorous life of the Minor League Baseball player | FOX Sports



Ten Destinations I’d Love To Visit In Ohio

I really wanted to go to Ohio the summer after I graduated from college. The reason is that I wanted to see the All-Star Game at Progressive Field in Cleveland. Come to think of it, I’m really interested in taking a trip to Ohio in general. One day, I’d like to write a novel that takes place in the state of Ohio. Here are ten destinations that I’d love to visit in Ohio.

#1: Progressive Field. The Cleveland Baseball Team, who will go by the name of the Cleveland Guardians, have a special place in my heart. Not only are they social media friends with another team I care about, the Colorado Rockies, but I won a holiday gift from them about three years ago. The fact that they play “Cleveland Rocks” when they win a home game is enough to make me want to attend a game at that stadium. I bet that the vibes there are fantastic.

#2: Great American Ballpark. I can already imagine laughing my elbows off at Joey Votto being an absolutely delightful member of society. He’s hysterical. I also can smell their food from my desk. I can imagine just how delicious their chili is. The ballpark also seems like a really fun place to be at. Honestly, I’d love to visit all the Major League Baseball ballparks.

#3: Cedar Point Amusement Park. My eighth grade math teacher showed my class a video of a very iconic ride at Cedar Point. Before getting into the lesson, she described the Top Thrill Dragster and her experience before showing us a YouTube video of the ride. Since it’s a very fast, very high ride, I will have to experience one of the most notorious roller coasters in my state. There are some other roller coasters that I’d love to ride on.

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The Top Thrill Dragster roller coaster (Credit: Amino)

#4: Pro Football Hall Of Fame. First things first, congratulations to the Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2021! I’m a girl who loves sports. Professional football has fascinated me since I was six years old. I grew up watching the Denver Broncos, who are my favorite football team. Some other teams I enjoy include the New Orleans Saints, Tennessee Titans, and the Seattle Seahawks. I’m really interested in learning about the amazing achievements of some of the most beloved athletes in American Football.

#5: Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame. About a month ago, I attended a concert consisting of four acts, the final act being Green Day. My sister and I decided to watch some videos of the bands performing live to “pregame” the concert. One of the videos was a live performance at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, where they are living their best lives. I grew up on music such as The Beatles, Deep Purple, and Moody Blues. Just thinking about this attraction has me headbanging!

#6: Columbus Zoo & Aquarium. Asking me if I want to go on a trip to the zoo or aquarium is a surefire way to put a big smile on my face. Doing both in the same day really makes me happy. This is where the Columbus Zoo & Aquarium comes into play. I can make a trip to see the smart, adorable elephants and the joyful, friendly stingrays all on the same day. It’s a big bonus, in my opinion.

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An African Penguin living his or her best life at the Columbus Zoo & Aquarium (Credit: Travel + Leisure)

#7: Cleveland Botanical Gardens. I’m kind of a plant nerd, honestly. I love going around and identifying flowers. Some of my favorite include sunflowers, daisies, and tulips. I grew up in a community of gardeners, so that inspired me. Plants and trees are so pretty to look at.

#8: National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. In high school, social studies was my favorite subject. I’d like to take the time to thank my tenth grade geography teacher for that. Therefore, I enjoy the prospect of visiting the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. I just really like museums.

#9: American Sign Museum. Speaking of museums, the American Sign Museum sounds like a really fun place to be. It would be so cool to see the different signs for restaurants, tourist attractions, things like that. There’s something about neon signs that is really endearing.

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A McDonald’s Hamburgers sign at the American Sign Museum (Credit: Cincinnati Parent Magazine)

#10: Cuyahoga Valley National Park. As much as I enjoy museums, I enjoy national parks even more. In fact, visiting every single one of the national parks in the United States is on my bucket list. Visiting this park will not only let me connect with Mother Nature’s beauty, but let me get closer to crossing an item off my bucket list.

What places in Ohio would you like to see? Do you have any attractions in the state that you recommend? Let me know in the comments below.

Fifteen Tips For Packing For A Move

My favorite thing about moving is the opportunity to change and grow into a new person in a new place. The thing I hate the most about moving? Packing. At least from my perspective, it feels like a chore that I wish I could get out of doing with a few Harry Houdini illusions. However, during my experience packing for my move that will be happening next month, I have learned some things that have made my life easier. Here are fifteen tips for packing for a move that I have learned.

#1: Use leftover shipping boxes to your advantage. Do you have leftover Amazon boxes? Walmart boxes? Target boxes? These are going to be lifesavers. Use them to pack your shoes, books, medications, art supplies, or any other items you want to take with you. Make sure to black out the address, though, in case you do recycle these boxes when you finish your move.

#2: Be prepared to donate quite a few old items. Of course, you won’t be taking everything under the sun with you. You might have some clothes that you have outgrown, don’t want to bother wearing anymore, or are too damaged (ripped/broken) to wear anymore. You might have some batteries that don’t work anymore or headphones that don’t play sound anymore. Be prepared to donate/recycle these old items. It will make your life much easier, plus your heart will be full from assisting the environment and fellow community members.

#3: Label boxes. This is just me, but I am not a fan of wondering what is in boxes when I move. This is where labeling boxes will be a lifesaver. If you have a box full of vitamins that will go in the kitchen cupboard, label the box “vitamins kitchen cupboard.” If the box is full of plates, bowls, and mugs, label the box “plates, bowls, and mugs.” Do the same if the box is full of saucepans that are holding baking ingredients. Speaking of that:

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Moving can be stressful (Credit: Shorewest Latest News)

#4: Use pots and pans to your advantage. Of course, in the new place, saucepan collections and Dutch ovens will be your best friends. Why not make them your best friends now? If you’re like me and need to own every bottle of vanilla extract under the sun, you can put them in the Dutch oven. Your handy dandy saucepan collection will be very useful to store other cooking ingredients, from liquid smoke to parsley flakes.

#5: Use shipping bags to store shower toiletries. Little did SheIn know that when they shipped me my adorable apparel, that I would find an amazing use for the zipper baggies that they send the products in. I am using them to store soap, cosmetics, skincare, nail polish, and other similar items. That is one of my favorite packing tips/tricks I have used.

#6: Use your shoes. Shoes pair well with socks and tights, correct? For that reason, I want to place them in my shoes. That will make my packing experience much better. I actually learned that in an American Girl book that I have since donated to a thrift store: use your shoes when packing.

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Pink shiny Birkenstocks (Credit: Lyst)

#7: Be realistic about the space in the new place. If you’ll be moving from your childhood house to a one bedroom apartment, be advised that you’ll probably have less room for what you think. What I did was look at floor plans with measurements for the unit that I will be living in. It’s also a good idea to keep in mind that the floor plan of the model apartment may or may not be very different from the unit you will actually live in. If you tour a unit with a balcony but will be living in a balcony with a patio, be prepared to have differing wall spaces.

#8: Search for moving services. Packing is already stressful enough in my opinion. Finding someone to help get your belongings from A to B sounds like the whipped cream on the pumpkin pie. Thankfully, moving services are here to help. I actually have found a moving service that I look forward to potentially hiring to assist with my move. Finding a moving service will help ease the stress of moving altogether and give you plenty of time to finish packing up.

#9: Use any furniture that you’ll be taking with you to your advantage. I have three sets of plastic drawers that I plan to take with me. I plan to store my SheIn toiletry bags and personal care items in the drawers. If you’ll be taking your dresser with you (I plan to keep my current dresser at my family’s house for when I come over for special events), then it will take the clothing packing stress out of the equation.

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A blue Ikea dresser (Credit: Stage Coach Designs)

#10: Leave any jewelry in their rightful places. If you have a jewelry box, the jewelry prep stress has been deducted from the packing equation. Your earrings, bracelets, rings, and chokers are safe there. I vaguely remember seeing in a video that you can put necklaces on a hair comb to keep them from getting knotted up. I think I will want to do that, and then see if I can place them in my jewelry box.

#11: You can wrap your silverware containers in plastic wrappers. If you have a little box with all your cutlery in it already, then that’s one less thing to worry about! I would recommend wrapping them with aluminum foil or Saran wrap, however. That way, the silverware won’t fly around all over the place in transit (and potentially get damaged, too).

#12: Paper products are great for fragile items. Wine glasses and candles and vacation mugs, oh my! By no means does the idea of these items shattering while driving to the new home. Paper products are recyclable, and they will keep your items safe. That’s reassuring, since I have multiple Bath & Body Works candles that I keep on display.

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Dessert-scented Bath & Body Works candles (Credit: A Very Sweet Blog)

#13: Pack early, pack often. Waiting until the last minute to pack your belongings is neither a friend nor a frenemy, even if you’re like me and have a Juris Doctor in Procrastination Law. Start as early as you can and pack as often as you can, but don’t make it the bane of your existence. If you have eleven weeks to pack, try spending at least six hours a week on packing each week, that way, you’re not under intense pressure.

#14: Ask for help if you need it. There is no law that requires that one single person packs all their belongings themselves. If you’re stressed out about packing up your kitchen, see if you can have coworkers and siblings come over to give you a hand. If the thought of packing your favorite books makes your stomach sink like a rock, reach out to your family and friends to see if they’re willing to assist. Never be nervous to ask for help with packing if you’d like a helping hand.

#15: Make sure to take a breather from time to time. Packing early and often is your friend, but your life is not required by law to revolve around packing. Feel free to take a break to listen to an audiobook or take a brisk walk. If you want to leave the house to get some Wendy’s or window shop at Walmart, feel free to do so. Having a strong balance between your mental health and moving preparedness is essential.

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A U-Haul moving truck (Credit: Good Morning America)

Do you have any other questions about packing for a move? Let me know in the comments below.

Ranking My Top 10 Favorite Restaurants

Restaurant meals are what get me through a craving, a tricky day, or a celebration. There’s just something about a feast of breadsticks, chicken, molten lava cake, and strawberry lemonade that just brings a smile to my whole face. Maybe it’s the cravings being satisfied. Maybe it’s knowing that I will be in a better mood with tasty food in my belly. Maybe it’s the fact that I’m enjoying a delicious dining experience while celebrating a wonderful event in a family member’s or friend’s life. Here are ten of my favorite restaurants to patronize at. These are based on my service experience, quality of food, and menu items available.

#10: Old Chicago. Two words: Spaghetti. Pie. If I could have spaghetti pie for each meal, I would do so in a heartbeat! They also make delicious pizza, and yummy berry lemonade. It’s been a hot minute since I’ve had Old Chicago. I’d like to have it again. It sounds like a great meal to celebrate good things.

#9: Noodles & Company. Meals of buttered noodles and macaroni and cheese are heaven on earth. The best part of all is chicken topped on top of the buttered noodles. It’s a carbohydrate and protein heaven. I never had the desserts, but I would love to have it one day.

#8: Village Inn. Very delicious pancakes. Very delicious chicken tenders. Very delicious chocolate pie. I had Village Inn for the first time back in May. From the first bite of my meal, I fell in love with the food. I know for a fact that I want to have a Village Inn birthday celebration for my birthday in January.

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Pumpkin Supreme Pancakes (Credit: Village Inn)

#7: Freddy’s. Chicken tenders? Check. Chicken sandwiches? Check. Delicious French fries? Check. Fry sauce from heaven? Check. Chocolate custard with cheesecake bits and cookie dough pieces? Check, check, and check! It’s some of the most delicious food that anyone could ever enjoy.

#6: Culver’s. Heaven in restaurant form. They have delicious cheese curds, barbecue sauce, custard, and chicken. I get an amazing aura. Also, their customer service is fantastic. I love them very dearly.

#5: Five Guys Burgers & Fries. Before I went pollotarian, I enjoyed bacon cheese dogs with ketchup, barbecue sauce, and lettuce. Now that I don’t eat red meat anymore, my new go-to is the grilled cheese sandwich with a side of Cajun fries. Might I mention they have tasty milkshakes? Shout out to Five Guys for being awesome.

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A variety of five Guys milkshakes (Credit: Thrillist)

#4: IHOP. Tasty pancakes? Check. Mood-boosting hot cocoa? Check. Delicious milkshakes? Check. A variety of the tastiest breakfast and lunch options one can have? Check! I just love IHOP. IHOP, I SKIP, and I JUMP for their yummy meals. Sorry not sorry for the attempted pun.

#3: Olive Garden. Unlimited breadsticks for every single meal! Who here is with me? Also, their fettuccine alfredo is so delicious. Also, am I extra bizarre for considering their after-dinner Andes candies dessert? Olive Garden is so cozy and delicious.

#2: Chili’s. Oh baby Chili’s is back! Baby back baby back! There’s a Chili’s location in the city where my sister attended college that has been nothing short of amazing! Also, I wish I had tried their honey mustard before December of 2019. I am itching to try their skillet cookie and their molten lava cakes. Plus, I could eat their tortilla chips and guacamole on a regular basis.

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Chili’s Molten Oreo Kae (Credit: Faithful Provisions)

#1: Texas Roadhouse. Give me ALL the Southern hospitality, mashed potatoes with cream gravy, chicken critters, and bread rolls with honey cinnamon butter! They have some of the most delicious food I could have ever had. The staff are amazing and light the day up. They have some of the best water ever. I also love their strawberry lemonade. It’s the fabulous trifecta: great food, great drinks, and great service!

What are some of your favorite restaurants? Let me know in the comments below.

Colorado Rockies Game Review: 2021 Star Wars Night

Wendy’s meal? Check. Sunscreen? Check. BB-8 Sunhat? Check. Department of Analytics & Laundry T-shirt worn in memory of a dearly departed acquaintance? Check. Galaxy print jeans? Check. Sunglasses? Check. Gray high tops? Check. Clip-on moon earrings? Check. Baby Yoda bracelet, necklace, and ring? Check. Face masks for days? Check. Immense love for a professional sports team that wears black vests and the willingness to scream bloody murder whilst professing my love for them? Oh triple double check!

What is this a checklist for, you may ask? Good question! It’s my checklist of things that got me ready for the Colorado Rockies Star Wars game on Saturday, August 7, 2021. I went with my sister and a very close family friend. I was very happy that I included the friend because I really wanted to show them that I want to make their day. It was a wonderful day and I enjoyed it very much.

After my sister and the friend picked me up for the game, we drove to Wendy’s to pick up some food to “pre-game.” It was delicious. Wendy’s is a good time. I like to associate Wendy’s with sporting events. The reason I do this is for two reasons. Number one, my family went to dinner at Wendy’s after my very first Colorado Rockies game ever. It was the first time I got to experience dipping a fry into their ice cream. Second, my family loved to go to Wendy’s after my younger brother finished playing a club baseball game. I digress.

Connor Joe going up to bat

Anyway, we arrived in Denver about an hour before the gates opened. We decided to stop by this really cute bookstore. It was really cozy, with two levels and an assortment of new and pre-loved books. In fact, I am working on a book of my own, which is about a fictional college exclusively for hockey players. I was inspired to write a little bit more of the first book.

Our seats were right in front of Purple Row, a row of seats that were painted purple as they were officially 5,280 feet above sea level. I was very excited to hear that Austin Gomber was the starting pitcher. I am a major supporter of Austin Gomber. He is a sugar sweet smoke show who has worked to make his place in the Mile High City. Some other people I was excited to see included Brendan Rodgers, Connor Joe, and C.J. Cron.

As soon as C.J. hit a home run, the excitement kicked all the way in. I shouted in excitement and caught the excellent play on video. I knew that C.J. was capable of magical things the second it was announced he would be a part of Denver. His performance in that game was proof. I am so happy for him. He’s been an offensive and defensive gem. 

CJ Cron’s home run trot

Austin performed quite well, in my opinion. I was live-tweeting during the game, making star wars references. One of the tweets was, “.@Rockies good good, let the strikes flow through you (cc: #austingomber).” Another one was, “GOMBER! UNLIMITED GOMBER! @Rockies #AustinGomber.” I don’t know why I was in a major mood for Emperor Palpatine. I just was.

Something really sad happened later in the game, though. Brendan Rodgers was struck in the hand with a pitch. It was gutting seeing him being in so much pain, and I can’t imagine how badly the pitcher felt after what had happened. Thankfully, I learned later that he was going to be okay. Ryan McMahon did a great job of being a pinch hitter/runner. I hate seeing players get hurt. It’s not something I wish on any player, even if the team they play for or the player themselves make me angry.

The food was excellent. I cannot complain one bit about the French fries or chicken tenders. I wish I had three helpings of those as well as two chicken sandwiches. I would have gotten Dippin’ Dots, but I decided to pass because I already had ice cream with my Wendy’s. My sister and I decided to split a Frosé, which is a rosé slush drink. It was worth it, but it will only be an occasional treat. Side note, I avoided driving at all after drinking the wine, as safety comes before all else. In addition, I made sure to drink plenty of water to make sure that I didn’t get dehydrated or sick. Coors Field is officially my favorite fast casual restaurant.

Elias Diaz up to bat

My group and I decided to leave early in the game to beat traffic, as leaving the parking garage that my sister and I like to park in best, the music garage, while other guests are headed out is not a fun experience. I am happy to report that Daniel Bard helped the Rockies secure a victory over the Marlins. It was a victory in a sense for me in more than one way. One, I had a fantastic time at the ballpark. Two, I saw the Miami Marlins play in real life, which is a promise I made to them and that I almost fulfilled last year (that is, until the pandemic struck and made a dent in not just my plans, but also the plans of people worldwide). 

One more thing: Shout out to the Rockies design and social media teams! You are my heroes and made the night extra fun!

A Somewhat Brief Appreciation Of Colorado Rockies Infielder Joshua Fuentes

INGREDIENTS: 713 cups of handsomeness, 915 milliliters of talent, 232 grams of lust for life, 741 tablespoons of loveable character, and National League Player of the Week honors. Mix it all together and you get an adorable human being named Joshua Fuentes. The young man has really grown on me as of late and he has become one of my very favorite people in the world.

Joshua, a Pisces, was born on February 19, 1993, in Rancho Santa Margarita, California. He is the cousin of ex-Rockies infielder Nolan Arenado, who now plays with Saint Louis instead. I have to wonder how much Nolan taught Joshua. I bet that he looks up to Nolan. There might also be something in the water out there in Orange County, California.

Joshua’s parents are Mercedes Milan and Justo Fuentes. He has one brother, Justin, and two sisters, Tatianna and Sophia. I am adamant that his family are extremely proud of their son, brother, and cousin. I’m proud of Joshua. I want to see him have nothing but success in his career.

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Joshua during an at-bat (Credit: Denver Post)

After graduating from Trabuco Hills High School, Joshua enrolled at nearby Saddleback College, and then continued his education at Missouri Baptist University. While he studied at Saddleback, his statistics included 33 Runs Batted In, 14 Stolen Bases, 29 Runs, and 57 Hits. This is just my perspective, but that’s worthy of a pat on the back, 45 high-fives, and a minute long hug. Things got better as he continued his studies in Missouri, with 65 Runs, 88 Hits, 47 Runs Batted In, and 7 Stolen Bases. He isn’t just a shining star, he’s a very special shining star.

How would I describe the shining star that is Joshua, you may ask? Good question! He’s a 24-karat shining star with an 18-karat rose gold border. The rose gold border is encrusted with the world’s finest amethysts. The yellow gold is drenched in glitter, plus encrusted with diamonds, rubies, sapphires, emeralds, and aquamarines. That’s one bright star if I say so myself. Just reading the description sends me running for my beloved Rawlings sunglasses from all that brightness. Might I also mention the star burns bright with rays of platinum and sterling silver?

Joshua’s success carried over to the minor leagues. His awards include five All-Star recognitions, five Player of the Week recognitions, a Rookie of the Year recognition, a Most Valuable Player recognition, and a Player of the Month recognition. If I’m being barbarically truthful, that’s a surefire sign that he’s letting his fantastic side shine through. I’m so happy for him for how far he’s come. His call up is very well-deserved, considering what an excellent job he has done. 

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Joshua is all smiles during his Hartford Yard Goats headshot (Credit: OurSports Central)

During his major league career, which started with his debut on April 6, 2019, he logged 12 Home Runs, 52 Runs, 102 Hits, 56 Runs Batted In, and a .245 Batting Average. I’m really excited for Joshua’s future. I know for a fact that he is going to keep on shining and making people extremely happy. I bet his family and friends are extremely happy for how hard he’s working, too.

I was so excited for him after his walk-off single to win the second half of a May double-header. In fact, it led him to win a Player of the Week honor. I was elated when I heard that he won the award. Very deserved! I am so proud of him and I hope that he continues to shine brighter than diamonds, rubies, and sapphires combined.

Joshua is handsome, inside and out. I have a huge crush on him. His smile, eyes, and luscious locks make me swoon! I also love his magical personality. He lives his best life and has constant fun. He seems like the kind of person you would invite over to eat cheesecake and watch CBS All Access. I like to think of him as the clubhouse cheerleader. If the Colorado Rockies had a party planning committee, Joshua would be the head of it. Joshua just is the textbook definition of a fabulous friend and colleague.

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Joshua hugs his teammate after a walkoff (Credit: KDVR)

Keep up the great work, Joshua! I am so proud of you and your accomplishments!








Hella Mega Tour: Concert Review

Dearly beloved, I’m the bad guy. I bless the rains down in Africa. Thanks for the memories. What do these sentences mean and why, you may ask? Good question! They are lyrics from songs performed by all four acts at the Commerce City, Colorado, leg of the Hella Mega Tour. The four acts were The Interrupters, Weezer, Fall Out Boy, and Green Day. It’s a concert that I am grateful to have attended and that I have looked forward to for a while.
Originally, I was scheduled to attend the concert in July of 2020. Unfortunately, because of the barbaric grip that the COVID-19 pandemic had just months before the four musical groups were scheduled to go on tour, it had to be postponed for thirteen months. My sister and I were really excited about going to this concert, as we both really enjoy Fall Out Boy and Green Day. The main reason I wanted to attend was because I had been itching to see Green Day live since the age of eighteen.
I decided to treat my sister to lunch on the way down, we enjoyed some delicious pasta. When the concert finally began, the opening act was a band that I had never even heard of before that evening, The Interrupters. I was blown away by their music. I can’t get over how wonderful they sounded. Plus, if I can say so myself, the lead singer is a major smoke show! She is a brutally beautiful human being who has a singing voice that has boosted my mood in a big way.

The set of the opening act, The Interrupters

Weezer is really awesome live, in my opinion. As soon as the stage was set for their act, I immediately thought of one of my friends who is a huge Weezer fan. My opinion on Weezer is that I will listen to their music, but they aren’t necessarily a top 15 favorite band of mine. Their live performance changed all that. As soon as they started playing their song, Beverly Hills, I was so excited. That song is an icon. Better yet, they played Africa, which is extra legendary!
I loved that people were living their best lives during the Weezer act. Some of them even threw their hands in the air to represent the Weezer logo. I tried, easier said than done. I’m still practicing so I can be a weirdo and have the ultimate Weezer sing along in my new place.
What I loved about Fall Out Boy’s act was the fact that their lead singer, Patrick Stump, was extremely excited to be there. He was smiling all act long. Some of my favorite songs that were played include My Songs Know What You Did In The Dark (the song that got me listening to the band in the first place), Sugar, We’re Going Down (which is my favorite song by the group), and Uma Thurman (which reminds me of passing finals in college during the fall of 2015). I don’t understand why Patrick’s voice is autotuned for non-live songs, his regular singing voice is fantastic.

Green Day performing Jesus Of Suburbia

Pete Wentz was absolutely hysterical. He took the time to call out somebody who was on FaceTime during the concert. Basically, he was confused as to why someone was doing all the virtual quarantine stuff when a band is playing in real live time. Then he insisted on taking a photo with the crowd at the end of the act. I found that to be really funny. I just really like when people use humor whenever and wherever they see fit.
The end of the night was absolutely worth it for me! It was the time when I finally got to see Green Day after waiting for six long years. Billie Joe Armstrong was a major gem. He insisted that people photograph as little of the concert as possible and set their mobile phones in their pockets. The reason, he said, was because now that we’re are all together, we can sing, dance, party, cry, and scream bloody murder together. He wasn’t wrong, though. In my opinion, concerts are a time to live your best life.
His voice was absolutely fantastic! Plus, his introductions were amazing, he went around and introduced all his bandmates. My favorite part was when he said that Tre Cool needed a very minimalist introduction and that he was the most dangerous drummer in the world. I’d have to agree with that, Tre is a fantastic drummer, probably the best that I have seen in my lifetime! I also adored how he insisted that the crowd do blood curdling screams in order for the group to proceed with the song.

Green Day peforming When I Come Around

There were three things that they did that I absolutely adore. First, during their performance of Still Breathing, Billie changed the lyrics from “Just shine a light into the wreckage” to “Just throw your hands into the sky.” He made sure that everyone had a ball during the 10 PM hour. Two, Billie was looking for a guitarist. When he saw a teenage human with about half a dozen years of guitar playing experience, he selected them to play a few chords, and made sure that the teen got bodysurfed off the stage. That human’s life was made, I guarantee it!
Lastly, a couple announced their engagement with a tank top that said, “Green Day: She Said Yes!” Billie called it to attention in the middle of the group’s performance of their iconic nine-minute ballad Jesus of Suburbia. What’s best of all, is that Billie did a “mini-marriage” where he said, “Dearly beloved, by the power vested in me, I now pronounce you, bat-[expletive] crazy.” Way to make my night by being a legend, Billie!
There is something that all three headliners did that I adored, and that is the confetti machine. At the end of each act, the bands showered the audience with confetti. It was absolutely adorable and made the experience extremely exciting and worth it. Plus, I loved burning all my energy through dancing along. My fitbit recorded about 20,000 steps, even more, perhaps. Another thing I loved was that the family in front of me was enjoying their lives to the fullest, singing and dancing along to every single song. Just knowing that they had a great time makes me happy inside.

Billie’s legendary engagement reaction

There were only two downsides. One is the fact that I got a nasty migraine during the concert. It was almost a hundred degrees outside during the daylight portion of the concert, there were some extremely bright lights, and the concert was loud even with concert grade earplugs. I started getting a painful headache in my eyebrow area that is resistant to water and electrolyte-rich beverages and that can only go away with medicine. There was no medicine inside the car or the plastic venue bag my sister and I took with us, so I was very miserable during the ride home. I needed to wear sunglasses during the night half of the concert because the lights were so bright.
The second downside? It ended. A week later and I still have those “post-concert blues.” I get really sad when an event that I enjoyed is over. I have been coping by sharing videos of the concert on social media in an attempt to make other humans smile.
Bottom line? The Hella Mega Tour Concert was worth every minute, every song, and every dollar. I am grateful that I went and I can’t wait to attend another rock and roll concert sometime in the future.


How To Eat Pollotarian At Sporting Events

As of March 2021, I am pollotarian. A pollotarian is a person who eats poultry, but not red meat. I have adopted this diet for health reasons, plus, I prefer the taste of chicken and turkey over beef and pork. There are foods that I miss, though. I miss eating a Rockie Dog at every single game I attend at Coors Field, and I wish I knew how badly I would miss Chef Boyardee’s Beefaroni when I cut red meat out of my diet. Not to fear, I have found some very tasty sporting event treats free of red meat. These are suggestions based on food available at Colorado’s Coors Field, Texas’ Minute Maid Park, and California’s Petco Park.

Gluten Friendly Chicken Sandwich. This feeds two cats with one can of Fancy Feast (I know this is way different than the actual saying, but I like this saying). Looking for a chicken option whilst avoiding gluten? This tasty treat from Coors Field has your back! I would like to try one for myself. I am curious to see how reducing gluten will impact my health.

Vegan Dog. I’ve never had a vegan dog before. I am interested in trying one. It will be a great way for me to get my hot dog fix at the ballpark while staying on the right track on my health journey. I’ll have to check to see if it has soy in it. If so, I myself will have to rule it out since my health history recommends against eating soy. It’s still a good idea if you are able to consume soy, however.

BBQ Pulled Chicken Sandwich. As a Texas girl at heart, I love barbecue food. I could have barbecue pulled chicken for every single meal if it were possible. The fact that this is a food option at the ballpark is heaven! Trust me, it’s delicious!

Burritos & Burrito Bowls. These are the best because you can customize them to your liking. Want a burrito stacked with grilled chicken and cilantro? Go for it. Want a black bean burrito bowl with both black and pinto beans? Bon appetit!

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The Steel Cactus Burrito (Credit: Ballpark Guides)

Custom Salads. Salads are some of my favorite things on the planet. My ideal salad is lettuce, spinach, carrots, cheese, chicken, and croutons. It’s the beauty of the food. You can add tofu, beans, banana peppers, and much more.

Veggie Quesadillas. I can smell the bell peppers, onions, and mushrooms being cooked while I’m writing this post. The best part of them? These can be for pollotarians, pescatarians, vegetarians, and vegans!

French Fries. I could eat them for every single meal. The Coors Field French fries are really delicious. I am adamant that they are the same way at other ballparks, do let me know if this is the case. Nonetheless, they are tasty.

Macaroni & Cheese. Now that I think about it, this would complement a barbecue chicken sandwich very well. If you can customize it, even better! I love the idea of a bowl of ballpark mac with barbecue sauce, turkey, and breadcrumbs.

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Delicious baked macaroni and cheese (Credit: Taste Of Home)

Chicken Tenders. This is my favorite food at Coors Field. In fact, it’s perfect for adults and younger humans. I consider myself a second-grader at heart, so the chicken tenders feel extra awesome as a ballpark dinner. It’s my favorite meal at the diamond now.

Dippin’ Dots. After having sold the delicious treat at minor league hockey games during my third year of my degree, I fell in love with it. I love the fudge brownie flavor the best. I also like the Cookies N’ Cream, Rainbow, and Mint Chocolate Chip flavors. 

Chicken Wings. After an experience where I ate severely undercooked chicken wings at lunch at work, I was turned off by chicken wings. However, I do think they are a good idea, especially if you’re with a group at a restaurant with a great view of the infield. Kind of like a party for when the team performs exceptionally.

Cheese Pizza. If I had a dollar for each slice of cheese pizza I have eaten ever since starting this diet, I would probably be able to buy five or six Urban Decay eyeshadow palettes at Sephora. The next time I have one at a sporting venue, I will absolutely dip it in ranch dressing. Pizza with ranch sounds absolutely tasty.

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Six cheese pizza with garlic sauce (Credit: Yelp)

Turkey Sandwiches. I’m more of a turkey kind of gal than I am a chicken kind of gal. Turkey sandwiches are some of my favorite things to eat in the world. They are very well complemented with side dishes such as bbq chips, apples with peanut butter, or French fries. Honestly, if ballparks had tomato soup, I would try a turkey sandwich with tomato soup, too.

Chicken Quesadillas. You know what would complement chicken quesadillas? Not just salsa, but also guacamole, queso, and sour cream! In fact, they should be served with a side of nachos in a helmet. That would be extreme Tex-Mex heaven, in my opinion.

Ice Cream. If ice cream for breakfast is acceptable during university undergraduate years, then ice cream for dinner is perfectly acceptable at the ballpark. Back in 2018, I wanted to get ice cream in a helmet during my first game between the Rockies and the Astros, alas, I was much too late. I will get it as soon as I can, though.

Funnel Cake. They are not just for state fairs! Powdered sugar, cream cheese frosting, red velvet batter, oh my! The perfect way to satisfy one’s sweet tooth when one wants to have all the fun possible.

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Red Velvet Funnel Cake (Credit: Pinterest)

Fish Tacos. Okay, maybe not everyone who is pollotarian is into fish. However, if you are having a hankering for seafood, fish tacos are excellent. I also really like the idea of fish tacos. I have to wonder if it’s because I have family who live in an area where seafood is a common part of the food culture.

Veggie Sandwiches. Of course, even as a poultry eater, there are days where I just wanna have plants for every single meal. Veggie sandwiches are amazing. I can smell the cheese, peppers, onions, and mushrooms being grilled from right in front of my laptop. Yum!

Popcorn. My favorite kind of popcorn is the kind where the bag is filled part of the way, topped with butter, fully filled up, and topped with more butter. It’s heaven in a bag. Where would I be without popcorn? A grumpy state of mind, honestly.

Pretzels. Soft pretzels with sauce are the best. I’m German on my mother’s side of the family, so I appreciate a good pretzel, especially Barvarian pretzels. I also love the soft pretzel sticks. Salty pretzels and cinnamon pretzels are my favorite. I wish they could be fed to me through IV.

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Homemade soft pretzels similar to the Auntie Anne’s recipe (Credit: The Spruce Eats)

What are some of your favorite ballpark foods? What other questions can I answer about the pollotarian diet? Let me know in the comments below.






A Somewhat Brief Appreciation Of Colorado Rockies First Baseman C.J. Cron

A couple of years ago, one of my acquaintances wanted to know which free agent would make the biggest impact in the Major Leagues. I let them know that I was adamant that C.J. Cron would make the biggest impact. Fast forward to today, and I was pretty correct in my potent beliefs. The man is so talented it’s hard to deny it any longer.

C.J., a Capricorn, was born on January 5, 1990, in Fullerton, California. He is from a baseball family, the son of former Major League Baseball player Chris Cron, elder brother of Texas Christian University baseball alum Kevin Cron, and cousin of former Major League Baseball player Chad Moeller. In 2008, C.J. graduated from Arizona’s Mountain Pointe High School and was drafted by the Chicago White Sox. Instead of signing with Chicago, he decided to enroll at the University of Utah.

C.J. living his best life in Anaheim (Credit: Halo Hangout)

C.J. has become nothing short of a magical unicorn since. He was a Freshman All-American, and also earned First-Team All-American honors during his sophomore year at the university. What are his average stats during his time at University of Utah? Good question! Overall, during the three years he played NCAA ball, C.J. boasted a .399 batting average, 40 home runs, and 18 runs batted in. Honestly, if I were family or friends with someone as magical as that, I would jump and sing with happiness!

He isn’t just any run-of-the-mill magical unicorn, however. He is a lavender unicorn covered in burgundy glitter, along with gilded hooves and a bronze horn. The horn has diamonds, aquamarines, and amethysts. The left front hoof has rubies, the right front hoof has sapphires, the left rear hoof has emeralds, and the right rear hoof has garnets. Best yet, there are also matte silver wings with flowers, butterflies, and sugar skulls. That’s how awesome King C.J. is!

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C.J. celebrates a home run (Credit: Sports Illustrated)

I’m very impressed with his 2021 statistics so far. So far, his statistics include a .269 batting average, 21 home runs, and 68 runs batted. Plus, he’s made it on base over 100 times. What about CJ’s career stats? That’s an excellent question. He’s been so wonderful that he has a career .259 batting average, 441 runs batted in,and 139 home runs under his belt, in addition to the fact that he has gotten base over 1,000 times. The more I think about it, the more he becomes one of my favorite people.

I was so excited when I learned that he had won the National League Player of the Week Award! It was shortly after I took my sister and a family friend to the Star Wars Night game. C.J. was lights out during that game! The day after that, he hit a grand slam and boosted his runs batted in count to seven. As the saying goes, seven is a lucky number. He has been a wonderful member of the Colorado Rockies!

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C.J. comforts and reassures Troy Tulowitzki (Credit: Toronto Star)

In addition, he seems like a really positive friend and teammate to be around. Recently, after hitting a game-winning home run this past week, he said that there is no quit in the team, and he also loves playing in front of the fans. I absolutely adore that positive energy. I like to think of them as the team cheerleader. Honestly, he’s the kind of person I would invite over to watch Hulu and bake cookies.

Go C.J.! That’s my C.J.!









Ten Songs I Absolutely Adore Right Now

Music is one of my favorite things on Planet Earth. I don’t know where I would be without it. It helps ease my nerves when I am feeling worried/anxious, cheer me up when I’m sad, and cool my jets when I’m enraged. I wish I could count the number of playlists I have created on Spotify. Here are ten songs I absolutely adore right now.

#1: Fire Meet Gasoline–Sia. I actually found out about this song when I was playing around on Instagram. I was posting celebrational Instagram stories to celebrate my favorite American Football team winning a game in dramatic, last-second fashion. As soon as I heard that song, I fell in love with it. I even choreographed a dance to the song in my head. That’s a sign of a great song, is it not?

#2: Cool Kids–Echosmith. This song is so iconic! I have actually mentally choreographed this song in my head, too. I love how the lead singer’s voice sounds. This is the song that I would absolutely jam out to when driving. I will always increase the volume (to a safe level, of course, to make sure it doesn’t distract me from the sounds of my surroundings), roll down the windows (weather-dependent), and sing along when this song comes up on Spotify/the radio.

#3: crushcrushcrush–Paramore. Let’s get one thing out of the way: I have a huge crush on Hayley Williams. She’s so beautiful, inside and out. The guitar is so awesome and I love the bridge. I wish I knew why, but there’s something about the repetition of rock and roll that really puts a smile on my face. This is not just a song that I would listen to in the car while singing along, it’s one I would listen and sing along to on repeat!

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A photo of rock band Paramore (Credit: Fanpop)

#4: Celebrity Skin–Hole. This song was the bane of my freshman orientation summer job existence. The movie that was shown during the time was Captain Marvel, which had this song play during the end credits. I became a crazy adorer of this song as a result. For me, playing the air guitar to this song and lip-syncing along is a must, and I will feel weird all day if I don’t do so.

#5: Tainted Love–Soft Cell. I call this the Ryan Spilborhgs song since I associate it with him. He’s one of my favorite people in the world. It’s been eleven years since I got to take my photo with him. Spilly is my favorite broadcaster, I love his energy and happiness that he brings to the broadcasts. I adore him with every stem cell in my body, and that’s why I love this song.

#6: See The Light–Green Day. I love how this song feels like two songs in one. To me, this song feels like a crossover between Green Day’s 21st Century Breakdown and AC/DC’s You Shook Me All Night Long. I really hope that they play this song at the concert that I will be attending next week. I love that song with all my heart. It’s a tune I would love to introduce to friends and family.

Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong performing at a concert (Credit: Phoenix New Times)

#7: My Heart Is A Bar–Old Dominion. I fell in love with Old Dominion four years ago. Their most recent album is one of my favorites. My favorite song? My Heart Is A Bar. I love the piano and the vocals. I also watched the very well directed music video. All I can do when I hear this song is just smile. I cannot quit grinning.

#8: Bartender–Lady A. I got my driver license at age eighteen. This song brings me happy memories of my favorite practice driving sessions. I remember listening to this song when I was driving to another town in the evening after school and after I had finished my homework for the night. My confidence was at an all-time high when this song came on. For this reason, I adore this tune and feel happy when it plays.

#9: Play It Again–Luke Bryan. First things first, I am in love with Luke Bryan’s sexy Georgia singing voice. Honestly, he feels like the kind of person you’d invite over for fried chicken and Disney+. I just want to jump and sing when I hear this song. It makes me smile from ear to ear! Luke Bryan makes very amazing music, at least from my perspective.

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Luke Bryan with fellow musician Blake Shelton (Credit: CBS News)

#10: Drunk Last Night–Eli Young Band. One of these days, I will see them in person. Cross my heart and hope to die and stew and fry. If I do get to see them in person, I hope that this is one of the songs performed. I love the instrumentals and the lead singer’s voice. I adore it to bits. I actually sang this at karaoke at freshman welcome week when I started college.

Which songs do you adore? Let me know in the comments below.