The Institution

Dr. Blake has found journal entries from Elizabeth Pennington’s journal, one of the most elite patients to stay at the Donald Haynes Institute of Mental Health.

April 17, 1939- Best day ever! My mother and father are taking me to Charleston for the weekend! Hopefully to buy some new things to keep up my social status. They said we are going to take a quick stop at an old house in the suburbs of Charleston just to see “the beauty”. Things have been pretty bad since Louis left me, I thought I was going crazy and thought my parents were going to send me away- but nope! Hopefully this will keep my mind off of it all. Ope! We’re here. What a beautiful house, can’t wait to explore!

April 18, 1939- I was wrong. My parents lied. Those sons of bitches. They tricked me and dropped me off at this disgusting Mental Health place. From the outside it looks nice, old, but whatever

May 13, 1939 – I have been living here for almost a month. In this hell hole. I am surrounded by the elites of the elites, but I still know I am the best. I am a damn Pennington for Christ’s sake. In this past month alone, five people have gone missing, including my best friend Polly Jennings. And somehow it’s all the same, they get sent into Solitary Confinement for misbehavior, and never return. I think I’m going crazy… I hear the strangest of things at night. I swear, every night there is something waiting right outside my door to get me.

November 1, 1939- I was raped. I don’t know by what, but I am certain. I awoke to this figure standing in front of me. This place has made me lose my mind. I hear things, I see things. I’m killing myself tomorrow- somehow. There’s no way to escape. This is the only option.


I can guarantee when all of us were little, going to SeaWorld was a dream. Getting to see all of the different sea life and go on all of the fun rides and best of all (in my opinion)… the food.

However, there was always a side that none of us saw… the pain and isolation that most of those animals faced. Yes, such animals as penguins or turtles or stingrays have always been animals that have been in zoos and are a more moderate size to live in such establishments. But, not orcas and even dolphins.

In Gabriela Cowperthwaite’s documentary, Blackfish, the truth behind SeaWorld is revealed. There had always been rumors that the orca whales were somewhat obsessed or just overall miserable, but this brings all of these rumors to light.

The documentary follows the life of Tilikum, the notorious whale who was involved in the three killings of trainers both at SeaWorld and Sealand of the Pacific. But, you cannot really blame an animal for killing someone. Tilikum was under major stress from living in such a small confinement for so many years and just eventually lost it and killed people.

My central argument in my research paper is to overall analyze Blackfish and analyze interviews from those on Blackfish. As well, find credible sources that show more details into the effects of such large animals as orcas being forced to live in captivity for the rest of their lives, or a long amount of time.

Alexa’s Lost Her Voice

It’s Super Bowl weekend! And with the Super Bowl comes so much excitement. For some people it is to see who is going to win the game. Will the New England Patriots keep their continuous winning streak, or will the Philadelphia Eagles surprise us all?

Although this is what most people watch the Super Bowl for, there is a population that watches for something a little bit more entertaining (I apologize to people who love football and obsess over it), but truly, it’s all about the commercials.

According to Business Insider, there is a baseline cost of $5 million for a company to put even a 30-second commercial on during the Super Bowl. So, they HAVE to live up to some pretty big expectations- an Amazon is one of those.

In Amazon’s Super Bowl commercial, the plot is simple. Somehow Alexa, a home speaker that Amazon has created that is basically like a Siri, has lost her voice, and Amazon is doing all it can to fix it. Amazon makes the commercial even better by adding such stars as Cardi B, Rebel Wilson, Gordon Ramsay and even Anthony Hopkins to appeal to all ages and truly get a kick out of what each artist/famous person has to offer.

Amazon did not create a boring and cliché commercial this year. They brought in famous stars and used Alexa as a way to get the word out about the speaker and also provide some fun.

It’s All About the Perspective

In Rory Sutherland’s Ted Talk, “Perspective Is Everything,” he speaks about the power of reframing things. No matter who, no matter what, everyone sees thing through different eyes, more specifically, through a different perspective.

Through life, there will never be a person who sees everything EXACTLY 100% THE EXACT SAME as you do. Yes, they might agree with something the way you do, but there will always be something different- and that is perspective. Perspective is all about people’s experiences and what they have seen. Everyone tries their best to see things positively and not truly have to face reality, because, as Sutherland states, “reality is not a good guide to human happiness.”

For example, one person could be living an extremely frugal life with barely any money to get by, and still be happy, but for another person, they could be living in the exact same situation and be embarrassed and ashamed, and overall depressed. This is best expressed when Sutherland claims that “the circumstances of our lives may actually matter less to our happiness than the sense of control we feel over our lives.”

The way one sees things and frames things truly matters, because this is how you define whether or not you will find happiness in life. Sutherland claims that we must reframe our minds, and reframe our PERSPECTIVES, in order to find happiness, and I cannot find that to be more true.

This semester I came into college dreading the idea of being back, as most people do. I love Houston (where I am from), I loved my comfortable home. I just loved the idea of staying somewhere where I felt comfortable. But, once I arrived, I told myself that I must change my perspective and reminded myself that I am here for a reason, I am here to get an education and learn more about myself and meet new people, and truly, since changing that perspective, things have gone from bad to amazing. You cannot go into a new chapter of your life dreading it, but most go in with full force.