The Student News Site of University of North Alabama

The Flor-Ala

The Student News Site of University of North Alabama

The Flor-Ala

The Student News Site of University of North Alabama

The Flor-Ala

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Why do we write about you?

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Whitney Veazey

I have collected testimonies from UNA students, staff, professors, and the Shoals area community regarding their current day.

“I would say that I am happy now, but life has been kind of tough this week. (…) I might get some Starbucks later on.” “My roommate is stressing me out.” “Lots of serotonin now that [I] just came from the gym.”

How benign is a word? How about an action? Each decision made every day leads you to outcomes you might have never imagined if you had taken a different route.

“I went to Fire Findz yesterday. (…) I [a]m thinking of going out on a date with this guy with the top I got.” “I had two tests today that I was stressing about, but I have Church, so I hope it will help with my stress.”

We might think much about the decisions we regret making in times of agony. Probably not much about the simple ones: a shoelace you tied before you could fall, a song you decided to give it a try, or the many options of breakfast you could have had at Mane Market. Fast-paced, simple decisions are why so many business people worry about reaching one’s unconscious mind; their product can be chosen or ignored in milliseconds of unconscious decision. But the snowball those decisions create is real and more present than we see. 

“I do not know why, but my stomach hurts.”

I met my boyfriend in a cultural exchange I did to Alabama in high school. The culture of the exchange is that you choose a country, not a state or city. I could have ended up in any one of the almost two hundred thousand cities and towns in the United States, but I did in Mount Hope, AL, which eventually brought me to UNA. My boyfriend and I have been together for a year and three months. We constantly talk about how lucky we are for this grain-sized decision bringing us together and anxiously discuss how easily it could have been for us to have never met.

“Lately, I have been studying for midterms.” “I hope my students know how much I care.” “I miss my mom.”

The amalgamation of decisions is what gives UNA a community and an identity. It would not be multinational if it were not for the International Affairs office, or culturally rich without the CAT Department’s efforts to bring worldwide independent art to the campus, or a representative of the Bible Belt if there were no nearby churches demographically dense in UNA’s students, or uniquely ours without the one guy playing his guitar in front of the GUC.

“I [ha]ve started listening to country songs.” 

Many things appear bigger than us, but most of the time, we are the ones shaping them. I sometimes get the “Why me?” question when I ask someone for a testimony for a news article. And it is because you were there. It happened the way it did because you were there. If you were not, it might have been different. If the outcome of an event comes out differently, so does the writing of its article. 

“I got a 96 on my history exam!” “My brother is getting married. The whole family is very excited.” “My cat died last week.” “I went to Montgomery and talked to an Alabama Representative.” “I am running for SGA Senate! (…) I just want to make a real change.”

The Flor-Ala is one of the most meaningful projects I have had the honor to be a part of. This multitalented and careful staff recognizes the Shoals’ identity and puts it on paper. Each article’s main idea is pitched because its content was created by a community member or group. Every event, festival, or person. Each soul is an agent of change.

“I love UNA.”

I came to the university because I love the South. For me, Alabama is about the people I know and what they do. And this piece exists because of me. I wrote it. But if it were not for you, sentences would change in position, meaning, and wording.

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About the Contributors
Manuela Ludolf, Staff Writer
Whitney Veazey, Chief Photographer
Whitney is a sophomore from Greenville, Ala. She is working towards a BFA with a concentration in photography. Whitney started at The Flor-Ala in Fall 2022 as a staff writer/photographer and is currently serving as chief photographer.

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