Ups and Downs of 2011

BEST OF 2011

  • Planning/Looking Amazing/MCing the FCAT Formal
  • Winning my biggest election yet!
  • THE PARTY ON THE ROOF
  • Giving my first, and second, and third leadership workshops
  • Training with Headlines Theatre in the Rainbow of Fear and Desire Technique
  • Getting the job! Yay!
  • Not getting the job! Yay!
  • Ravin’ like Gandhi
  • Making the short PSA Downpour
  • Finishing a Documentary that made people cry and laugh
  • Organizing a Flash Mob
  • Wine and Dine at Hotel Vancouver
  • GOING TO PORTLAND AND HAVING VEGAN FOOD AND BROTHERLY LOVE
  • Clear Leadership Training
  • TAKING ALL THE SIAT FILM CLASSES
  • Doing Headshots
  • STARTING THEC4C.COM
  • Stalking George Strombolopolous at EPIC
  • working with kids at summer camp
  • GOING TO LA
  • GOING TO CAFE GRATITUDE
  • MEETING MY ROLE MODELS
  • Going on funny dates
  • LipDub Night Walk
  • SURFING WITH MY SISTER
  • SEEING SUBLIME WITH MY SISTER
  • The View from Overnight Orientation Training
  • Finding My Cell Phone… so many times : P
  • O – DANCE
  • WE DAY DANCE!
  • LIVING THE DREAM
  • MAROON 5!
  • BIRTHDAY MARATHON!
  • Meeting E-Friends!
  • Occupy Vancouver
  • VEGANS UNITE IN CALGARY
  • SHAKE IT.
  • DANCING LIKE THERE’S NO TOMORROW

Lowlights

  • Being “homeless” for a while – but getting to connect with so many friends and realizing how supported and loved I am. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you!
  • Being yelled at and followed on the street – but getting to learn about human rights and finding new ways to BE LOVE and hold space for everything.
  • Experiencing the affects of legal disputes, but learning how to love and hold space in any situation.
  • Listening to some friends going through tough times – but getting to be the person others turn to because I am a listener and a space holder.
  • Losing a family member of a close friend – but being reminded of how important it is to reach out to others and write, love, HUG, smile, hold.

All in all it was a truly amazing year. Thank you for being part of it.

Time to MAKE 2012 THE YEAR OF ENDLESS LOVE.

: )

my thoughts on DREAMING (or a review of Waking Life)…

The basic plot of the film is based on a physiological phenomenon known as “lucid dreaming”. Lucid dreaming means dreaming while knowing that you are dreaming. The term was coined by Frederik van Eeden who used the word “lucid” in the sense of mental clarity. Many of the dream state idiosyncrasies described in the film, such as the inability to read time on a digital watch or the tendency of light switches to malfunction, are described in studies authored by Dr. Stephen LaBerge of Stanford University, the leading American authority on lucid dreaming.

FROM INDB

I think it’s interesting that is was created on mostly consumer equiptment, proving that you don’t need to spend lots of money to make good art (however I am the proud owner of the new Nikon D7000 haha).

I LOVE the quotes in the movie. I was trying to tweet everything but there wasn’t enough time. Some of my favorites were…

Dreaming is destiny.

Judge not lest ye be judged.

As one realizes that one is a figure in someone else’s dream, that is self awareness.

On really romantic evenings of self, I go salsa dancing with my confusion.

…that’s what I loved the most, connecting with the people. Looking back, that’s all that really mattered.

…we all know the function of media has never been to eliminate the evils of the world, no. Their job is to persuade us to accept those evils and get used to living with them.

I had some interesting thoughts of my own as well. I think i’m gonna use them to make an art film though so stay tuned : D

I really want to learn more an experiment with ludic dreaming and this whole realm of ideas.

PS: There’s a HOW TO for everything these days : P

Requiem for a Dream

What are you addicted to?

BE EXCITED, BE BE EXCITED!

So I just watch the AMAZING movie Requiem for a Dream for the first time. It was directed by the same guy who made Black Swan (winner!) and I’m really excited to watch more of his stuff. Anywho, I thought IT WAS A BEAUTIFUL FILM. The acting was so real and I found the whole thing to be very immersive. The soundtrack is haunting and I thought the editing was super innovative, simple and a very creative use of the visual medium. Did i mention the script? BEAUTIFUL! Every word. I laughed, had tears in my eyes and was really taken by the narrative. It was a very interesting study of addiction. I think they should show this movie in high schools because it really made me want to not do drugs. hahaha. But seriously, the conclusion was really disturbing (in a good way) and I was physically altered by watching this film. Riding my bike home afterwards was a bit of an adventure given my slightly altered frame of mind having just watched 2ish hours of drug related visuals (had this moment where my shadow was chasing me… so scary… and funny haha). It’s interesting to think about my own addictions though. In the movie they deal with hard drug addiction, prescription drug addiction, food addiction, sex addiction, people addiction, art addiction… I think everyone has addictions. What is your drug? And what would your life be like without it?

PS: The film also has this pretty trippy wesbite!

Movie Binge

I’ve been really sick lately. I couldn’t sleep. So last weekend I watched movies.

Nowhere Boy: I really enjoyed this film! I’m not sure how factual the storyline was but it was very well done. Someone really took care with the art direction and framing, which also made it stand out to me. I spent the first half of the movie trying to place the lead actor, and then I realized (okay, maybe I IMDB searched him ahah) he was in Kickass! What a difference! haha, very well done though, definitely a recommended film.

Dogtooth: This is a very strange movie. Very good. But very strange.

It deals with two parents who keep their adult children at home and teach them lies about the outside world. Of all the movies I watched on the weekend this one has stuck out the most to me. It was disturbing, funny, and makes for a strange caricature of modern society. There are so many things the family could represent, so much symbolism. This one would be fun to go analytical on.

It is interesting that this is a foreign film, so part of the strangeness may come from cultural differences, and I think part of it is intended.

Garden Party: I really liked this movie! I had wanted to watch it for a long time, after seeing a series of youtube videos they posted as promotion. They paid actors in Hollywood $100 to tell their sceezy stories of the saddest things they’ve done to get paid. There were some pretty funny ones.

It’s interesting because in the marketing and synopsis they really highlight Willa’s character and how she is trying to find a normal way to make money, however I didn’t think that was a very prominent part of the film at all. For me what really stood out was the struggles surrounding sexuality. Confused, abused, using, taking advantage of… The film really shows the ways we are all using eachother. It also led me to an interesting revelation. In society, we like to punish the oppressor. You do something bad, it is your fault. However, strange as it sounds, I really feel like the oppressed party plays a role in that relationship. Who gives power to the oppressor? How are they able to carry out their bad deeds? Perhaps if we stopped enabling people and giving them power over ourselves, we would have less challenges surrounding power. So much to consider!

PS: I could only find this “garden party true story”… but there were some good ones!

My Blog’s 2010 Review

Interesting stuff.

 

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 7,000 times in 2010. That’s about 17 full 747s.

 

In 2010, there were 234 new posts, not bad for the first year! There were 105 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 36mb. That’s about 2 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was August 29th with 85 views. The most popular post that day was HAWAII: An Adventure in SuperForesting.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were facebook.com, digg.com, twitter.com, teamsuperforest.org, and healthfitnesstherapy.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for i’m on an adventure, toms tan, hug bucket, the egg andy weir, and michael franti.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

HAWAII: An Adventure in SuperForesting August 2010
9 comments

2

2010 Silent Skytrain Dance Party April 2010
2 comments

3

About March 2010
6 comments

4

TOMS Tan July 2010

5

Mohawk? April 2010
2 comments

Inception –

Inception PosterI FINALLY saw Inception yesterday. Now I know what everyone’s been talking about. First off this post contains spoilers but if you haven’t seen the movie I recommend you get out there and do so.

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This movie made me think about a lot of things and i’d like to express how much I LOVE movies like this. I’ve been known to host a mind@#$% movie night every now and then and this will definitely be shown at a future home screening. It’s so refreshing to come out of something inspired and confused at the same time.

I think Inception offers us some important lessons. First off, we all have a choice about how we create our world to be. Which reality do you choose to live in? Does it matter? Maybe it was Mal who had the right idea, as long as you are happy why waste time judging if something is “real”. She may have gone mad and killed herself but I think that was how Cobb created her to be, both by use of inception and by his own imagination (if we conclude that the movie took place in a dream). In my opinion, Cobb is perhaps the most insane because he could not dream… maybe that tells us that the whole movie was a dream? Can you have natural dreams within a dream? Debatable…

The movie also reminded me about being present; living in the moment. LIVE live right? It doesn’t matter where you are as long as you accept your surroundings and fully engage with them. I think it would be foolish to lose yourself in a dream forever, however that is not to dismiss the power of imagination. Create amazing beautiful things and think of impossible dreams, but don’t lose sight of where you are.

The whole experience was pretty trippy. I went to an afternoon showing and it was still daylight when I came out (not as disjointing as seeing a matinee of the hangover [ I was like WTF?!? Where am I?], but still disorientating). I had to go hug one of the trees outside the theatre to feel if it was real. I needed to feel it’s barky skin. It felt alive… btw.

Cobb’s whole relationship with Mal was both beautiful and disturbing. There is some movie that I can’t recall which said that no one should ever be the only one. You have to rely on yourself and I think even when you are married you are still your own person and can’t invest EVERYTHING in one other person. I think he was way to attached to her, that said love makes people do CRAZY things so I can sort of understand how someone could fall into that trap. All of that though, feelings, emotions, relationships… it’s all in our heads. We really do create our own reality.

All this talk about dreaming also reminded me to watch Joe Rogan’s DMT rant. If you don’t know what DMT is, it stands for Dimethyltryptamine. In summary it is naturally produced by the human brain and found in most living things. It is a highly illegal, highly potent psychedelic. Listening to his interview made me a little bit sad that we waste time and money outlawing things like that when nuclear bombs are being developed that have the power to destroy the planet, yet we aren’t making those chemical illegal.

I don’t think I would ever personally experiment with that stuff just because I can only remember about 6 dreams I have had in my lifetime and they have all been very scary. I think what makes dreams memorable to me is that feeling of adrenaline you get from a really intense dream… and I think having more DMT than my brain produces naturally could incur very bad effects and a negative experience.

In short, GO SEE INCEPTION! ANd go learn about new things : )

Keep dreaming,

Jenni

Alice in Wonderland Thoughts

Last week, on Tuesday at Summer Camp we watched Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland. I was so excited for this movie a year before it came out and then I got busy and pre occupied with life and somehow this was my first viewing of the film. I had heard mixed review from people about it but I am so glad I finally got to watch it. We relocated from a theatre to a classroom so I can’t comment much on the special effects or the visuals but I LOVED the story and the message. It had so many clever and funny moments and equally entertaining were the camper’s reactions. When the caterpillar was wrapping himself in his cocoon I was blessed to overhear…

“See, smoking kills you.”

“No, smoking turns you into a butterfly.”

HAHA! I think that statement is debatable. LOL.

The film went really deep into exploring madness and also imagination. There was a moment at the beginning where Alice laughed and explained that she had a sudden vision of all the men in dresses and the women in pants. I have a confession to make. Sometimes I tell people I had a dream about something but really I just had a crazy imaginative thought and passing it off as a dream felt more socially acceptable. Sometimes I am honest though. One of my favourite past times is picturing everything people say to me in muppet voices. This is a very good form of entertainment : D

Her speech at the end about the six impossible things was probably my favourite.

“I try to believe in as many as six impossible things before breakfast. Count them, Alice. One, there are drinks that make you shrink. Two, there are foods that make you grow. Three, animals can talk. Four, cats can disappear. Five, there is a place called Underland. Six, I can slay the Jabberwocky.”

– Alice

All of those things can be proven as true, or if not they are believed by the masses. Who is the crazy one really? In the end one of the main themes that stood out for me was the concept of identity. We are not defined by other people but by our own actions. That is what makes us who we are.

I definitely want to watch it again, I was very impressed.

The world is my wonderland.

J

The Garden Diet

I just finished doing a 21 day raw cleanse with my Mom called “The Garden Diet“. It cost some money but they sent us all the recipes to follow and there were a bunch of other people doing it at the same time as us.It was created by this really cool raw family that is super healthy looking and fun having (the website talks all about them). I started it the same day I started working at summer camps so it was really nice to not have to make decision about what to eat… you just follow the recipes! A few of them were kinda gross but from the most part they were delicious and helped me to try new things and learn which flavours I prefer, This cleanse was completely raw and didn’t use a dehydrator at all. I was amazed there were so many recipes using just nuts, seeds, fruits and veggies.

I stuck to it pretty religiously except for the last few days…

I did it because I wanted to support my Mom doing it, anything that puts more vegan food in our house is a good thing, and I am also very interested in raw eating.

The first few days I was EXHAUSTED and this could have just been from starting a new job and not being used to working with kids all day. Wednesday the energy started coming and I felt unstoppable. Everything was great until Thursday of week two, “Water Day”. On thursday itself I was fine not eating and just drinking water. I went to rehearsal and had a full day without really being hungry at all. The next morning however I woke up and was too weak to move, my Mom had to drive me to work and make me some juice and almond milk. I felt like Mimi in RENT when she’s been “doing lots of drugs and not eating any food for three weeks”. Apart from that is was really good though, I’m glad I experienced it and it was a fun/tasty adventure.

If you don’t know what raw food is it basically entails not cooking anything and eating lots of fresh juice, soaked nuts, seeds, veggies and fruits. YUM! Of course this is gluten free and vegan (some recipes used honey but I substituted fruit and dates in those cases).

MMMMMM.

Review: The 100 Mile Diet

I recently read The 100 Mile Diet, a book about a year of local eating. I was disappointed with this book. It made local eating sound very difficulty (nearly impossible) and depressing. Also most of the recipes they featured were not vegan which is a problem for me. The biggest draw of this book is not the writing itself (which I found to be voiced in an ancient and at times out of touch way), but the movement it has inspired.

Reading this book has forced me to think much more about eating locally and consumption in general. When the concept of eating locally was first brought to my attention (Buy Local or Die anyone?) I thought it would be impossible in the Vancouver area. Sure, it is easy for someone who lives in a tropical avocado paradise to eat locally but what about those of us who live in a place where the closest thing grown locally to a pineapple is a pine cone? The book greatly surprised me with the abundance of local food available here in BC. This book has really been revolutionary in changing the local marketplace as well. Just today I read an e-mail proclaiming that the local SFU Pocket Farmer’s Market will now carry local flour (something the authors searched far and wide for). As the demand for local food grows so does the marketplace, it’s amazing. The more I learn about local foods the more enticing they become.

Go visit a farmer’s market. Make a trip to a U Pick this summer. Cook at home. Make things. Blog about them.

You might even want to live on a farm for a while. I’m certainly considering it. Check out World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms.

PS: Did you know they grow Stevia in BC? COOL!

Review: Vegan Freak

The last book read was Vegan Freak by Bob Torres and Jenna Torres (yes they are a couple and yes I think it’s adorable). I love the cover and carrying the book around was a great conversation starter (I was sad to return it to the library). As someone who has been vegan for a while (a little over a year now) most of the information was not new to me. After a while you get used to dealing with common questions and you learn how to find things you can eat. I expected the book would deal more with social ethics, something I am struggling with. For example, what to do when someone gives you a non-vegan gift and similar situations. I also disagreed with some of their advice. I do not think you should get rid of all your non-vegan things. I still have shoes with leather and will wear them until they wear out. Waste is a huge problem in North America and throwing things out only contributes to this. Also, when you give things away to people it tells people that it’s okay for them to continue to be non-vegan. I am a huge advocate for up-cycling and reuse. I would love for the world to stop abusing animals but I don’t think we should waste all the animal products currently in existence.

For new vegans this book may be very helpful and I enjoyed the comical and entertaining voice they write with. Read this book with a grain of (sea?) salt and form your own opinions. Reading vegan books if a great way to open dialogue (skytrain conversation anyone?) and promote the cause.