Tim Gruver
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Which sound gives you goosebumps?

The cold, bitter winds of winter.

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Sometimes parents seem less than educated, organized or motivated themselves, and yet are attempting to homeschool their kids. It seems to me that intelligence and discipline would be a requirement of a parent homeschooling their children. Your thoughts? And will you homeschool your children?

Grace

I would argue that both of those qualities are prerequisites for parenting in general, but they're highly subjective in the eyes of the beholder. The idea that children should be confined to the home and be sheltered from all people, opportunity, and objective facts themselves is rather monstrous should they be expected to be contributors to society.

Homeschooling is built on the principle that schools themselves are merely the sum of what you learn from a textbook and our educational system should and can offer much more than that. Schooling acts as a means of expanding one's knowledge of people and the world around you which cannot be taught without experience. My education was, in effect, a type of pseudo-religious hermitage rooted in a paranoia of outside influences whose positive (and negative) consequences are critical to shaping their worldview and overall chance at forging lives outside the home.

The American public educational system is plagued with ignorance, abuse, and an overall lacking curriculum, but the idea of socialization is not wrong in itself. It is the only path for children to understand their citizenship as a member of their greater communities. I do believe parents have a right to homeschool their children, but with far more oversight from actual educational institutions than they have now in order to better guarantee children a chance at getting into college.

Should I ever have children of my own, I would never homeschooling them unless they required extraordinary emotional or physical accommodations. Homeschoolers do indeed have higher acceptance rates at universities, but even as a homeschooler and soon-to-be college graduate myself, I know that no one talks about the homeschoolers who are inevitably left behind.

At its core, homeschooling is a system that robs its participants of freedom. That's something I do not want for my theoretical children. At the very best, I would want myself and my significant other to let homeschooling be a choice that they could make for themselves. That's the best gift I could afford them.

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What keeps you from approaching people you find interesting?

A myriad of things, but namely a combination of my own insecurities and inexperience. Much of my life included very few people outside of my immediate family and sometimes I struggle exploring outside of the bubble that was built for me. I would describe myself as an introvert off the job, despite my relative progress with changing that in the past year and I've struggled to find the confidence to deeply invest in relationships beyond my existing friends.

More than anything, I have yet to meet anyone I was interested in who wasn't preoccupied in relationships of their own or a coworker with whom there would be conflicts of interest. I love extroverts – and extroverts are usually several steps ahead of people like me. I have the kind of cautious nature that makes me really try to know the people I'm around first before I made any sort of romantic gestures. That habit has usually left me with disappointing results me before a more intimate conversation could ever begin.

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Hmmm. I'm sure many feel as you do, sheltered upbringing or not. I look back with regret at chances I didn't take with people I really wanted to and I'm only 22. THATS ALL GONNA CHANGE THIS YEAR! Maybe :) It's scary.

I'm 24 myself and have promised myself many things, many times over. Few of them came true, but only thanks to my inaction. I admire your optimism and hope for the same. Let's both aspire to make 2017 a year to remember. :)

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What's stopping you from being the romantic you want to be?

Probably the fear of failure I've developed as a sheltered homeschooler who has yet to go out on their first date. I consider myself attracted to very select kinds of people and I have never confident enough to ask those individuals whether they felt the same way.

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If you could change one aspect of your personality, what part of it would you change?

Witty Rabbit

I would be the hopeless romantic I've always aspired to be.

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I think I asked you this before a long time ago, but what is the oddest or most surprising thing you've observed about life recently?

Witty Rabbit

You simply cannot teach grown adults to care about one another if they do not already.

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How long will it be before you graduate from UW?

Witty Rabbit

Next spring, as a matter of fact. Once a Husky, always a Husky, though.

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Would you rather suffer extreme cold or extreme heat?

Given where I live, extreme cold is the devil I know and one I'm more prepared to contend with thanks to a wooly wardrobe.

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If, for some reason, you had to choose a new identity, what would be your new name?

Martin J. Clemens

Abraham "Ace" Ares, gumshoe extraordinaire with a license to eat.

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How far did you get to actually eating that apple before you realized it was plastic?

Witty Rabbit

Putting it in my hand and opening my mouth before I heard my mother telling me, "that's plastic."

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Tell about the most exotic food you have eaten!

Almost ate a plastic apple as a kid in a model home.

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What historical event that had greatly affected America that happened between the end of the Civil War and yesterday?

The answer to that question would likely change from generation to generation, but speaking for myself, there is no understating the impact of 9/11 on the ruthless expansion American war on terror. Many more people may have died before or since, but few became such egregious symbols for police state propagandists as those who died that day. Two wars and trillions of dollars later, 9/11 continues to be a reminder of how and why we got here today.

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Where does the phenomenon of Justin Bieber lie?

Hell.

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What mobile phone model do you have?

An iPhone 5.

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What makes something "American."? Is being American simply a question of geography? What five things you think of what "American" is?

If we look at our old friend of Merriam-Webster, "American," is defined as "relating to or characteristic of the United States or its inhabitants." It would follow that geography has no absolute bearing on the nature of something's Americanism.

I would be reluctant to define anything as "American" when we are a nation of immigrants whose art, economy, politics, government, and culture as a whole are ideas borrowed from across the world. American exceptionalism is hardly American at all. It is the kind of indulgent self-assurance that every nation-state affords itself when its expansion is in question.

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Your song of the day!

Nightwish's "Over The Hills and Far Away" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CwED4C5FJuo

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What does comfort mean to you?

Safety, security, and with some kind of carbs in my mouth.

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I like to send this question out every once in a while to see how people are feeling. What gif or picture best represents your current mood?

Witty Rabbit

Bijouterie or jewelry?

I will say this once and I will say it again: Pizza. Pizza is edible. Jewelry are just absurdly expensive rocks.

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I keep telling my cats that the sky is falling as they watch the snow. What weird crap do you tell your pets?

Allison Campbell

I tell my sister's cat that she's smarter than Trump, but I don't consider that weird crap at all.

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when you brush your teeth do you move your head to meet the brush or move the brush to meet your teeth or a combination?

Allison Campbell

Do not try and bend the brush, that's impossible. Instead, only try to realize the truth...there is no brush. Then you will see it is not the brush that bends, it is only yourself.

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What’s the scariest dream you have ever had?

I woke up in my very own bed to the sound of Darth Maul clearing his throat to sing to me. I woke up before I knew how much he could belt out.

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Which is the best snack for a Friday evening?

Pizza.

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what type of machine does Florence have?

She likely has a washing machine at the very least.

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About Tim Gruver:

Writer of sorts. Former author at @leviathyn and @BagoGames. Words at @CGMagOnline, @Gameranx, & @Gamesradar. Journalism major @UW and scribe The Daily. Observer of life & its oddities.

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