Decided blogging is the easier way to keep in contact with all of you,
so I thought I’d give a little update
Belinda and I are doing just dandy up here in the great white north
we had our monthiversary the other day 🙂
we celebrated by going in service and going to work lols
The ASL group here is most exciting with growth that is visible just in the short time i’ve been here.
I have a feeling it’ll be a congregation in no time
we’ll be up in nova scotia new brunswick soon for two weeks
the asl territory is unassigned so myself, belinda, a pi couple and a single pi sister will all be
working hard to cover the contacts and encourage the isolated group 🙂
I’m excited to say the least
We’ll be sure to take lots of photos to share with you guys
Living in such a different culture has been quite the adjustment
there are still little things that come up up here that still make me giggle
little “bags of milk” if you will,
and I’m pretty sure I say “soorry” now,
soorry guys, its happening!
Anywho I miss all of you tons, and love you even more!
so its my last day in the big bad world of Texas, and I must say its been fun living here.
I find it pretty funny actually. You see I’m a little white kid from Ohio
and I’ll prolly always have that persona about me
but when you tell people you’re from “Texas” they all look at you the same way. . .
“Texas!” oh wow, . . . do u have to carry a gun when u go to the store?. . . “
I like to mess with them…
“yup, and then when I’m done I mount my horse named Silver and catch an armadillo for desert!”
Its funny. I don’t look Texan, and I’m not Texan. But the label is stuck. . .
anwho I’m all packed
I hope so.
I can’t believe that on my last day here it’s cloudy
I don’t think its been cloudy since Pancho Villa came through here
. . . no I’m wrong, it was when Billy the Kid was in town. . .
notice our dead palms. . . I think the one in the back is gonna make it
but that little one in the foregroud.
last time I”ll see these palm trees
and the last time I’ll look at this pool and say
“u know if only it wasn’t so gosh darn cold”
this is the last night I”ll sleep on not quite a bed. . .
… in a room that isn’t mine
and the last time (I’m excited about this one). . .
I have to clean up after a dust storm
the last time the neighbors dog will bark at me
(tripod isn’t out today)
hopefully he barked himself to death
I’m sorry was that mean?
my last load of laundry
and the last time I”ll use the living room as my closet. . .
I’m quite nostalgic today. . .
but I guess thats ok right
being my last day and all. . .
When I first moved to el paso, I thought I had it all figured out. . . When I got my first job, I had a picture in my mind. . . When I have a a painting in my head, I can see it perfectly. . . When I first met one of my now very good friends. . . he thought I was a prude. . . and I frankly thought he was crazy. When I woke up today. . . I thought it was gonna be hot. . . I thought I would be single until at least 25. . . I thought Apple TV was going to be a huge hit. . . I thought it rained at least once a year in the desert. . . I thought Pittsburgh was going to win. . . I thought I could make it on one tank of gas. . . I thought the word “pylon” was extinct. . . I thought the speed limit was 70. . . I thought I knew what I was saying before I opened my mouth. . . I thought I knew
But I didn’t. . .
because life’s more interesting that way. . .
much more interesting. . .
last night I did the unthinkable. . .
after giving my family first dibs, I put all of my paintings in the trunk
and under the cover of darkness I brought my friends near. . .
and I gave all of my paintings away. . .
Before I did this I was afraid that I’d regret it
but I must say,
I feel surprisingly fulfilled. . . and full
like Kiera here. . .
“modern art” is very controversial
you realize this when you create alot of it
I just had lunch with a math professor that I interpret for
I explained to him that I’m trying to get rid of my paintings
so I offered him one.
his reply was,
“oh no no thats ok, I find it hard to appreciate art like that”
I didn’t take offense at all, he was perfectly honest, which I like
but!!!! I have two questions to ask regarding that statement.
1) what is “art like that?” What makes some art “modern”?
and 2) why is it such a love or hate relationship?
some people love it, and others. . . have a hard time finding the art value in it.
will this remain just one of those mysteries?
so I have this thing about artists. . . its kinda like when musicians make it big. Let me explain. You know how you like that band thats “yours.” Its cool, unlabeled, free, genius, and incorruptible. Lets take kings of leon for example, when they first started they were undeniably their own men. Long haired 70’s southern garage rock legends that couldn’t sell out if they tried! We loved them for that (at least everyone but America who’s still listening to Kelly Clarkson on the radio). We loved them , they were ours, and now they’ve hit the mainstream.
Why? Did they sell out? In my opinion no, I agree with the words of a friend of mine, that like the Beatles, some people get big because they are, simply put, that good. Nevertheless they are no longer our pocket band that no one in America knows about. Mind you, the mainstream only knows their hits. I went to their show in Pheonix. It was ridiculous watching the 17 year old girls trying to mouth along to lyrics that they had obviously never heard before, for 90 percent of the show!!!! So I ask u, is it really selling out if what you’ve “sold” are 3 singles? When I look at bands like that on stage I don’t see money in tight pants, I see passionate musicians who happened to make it big. I think labels like “sell out” should be applied to those that operate for fame from the start. The prefabricated crapola that we’re barraged with daily.
so!!!! With that illustration in mind, my point is that this principle guides how I perceive artists. I believe that art is for the artist, and you only sell out when you forget that. So if you happen to make it, great! But if you’re a real artist, that person proudly standing in that gallery will be the same person anonymously pouring their heart onto canvas.
People-watching is a hobby of mine that absolutely fascinates me, . . . for three main reasons. . .
- There are so many AMAZING people out there
- “AMAZING” can mean crazy
- “crazy” is a good thing in my book (If u’ve been reading this blog for any length of time u know that by now)
Seriously, its insanely entertaining and perfectly portable, making it ideal for travel! Wherever you find yourself, sitting down and observing the innumerable hordes of people that are bound to surround you can be refreshing. While in reality you can do this in any public place, some locations are more fruitful than others. Sooo I thought I’d share with you some of my favorite places to observe the masses of society and why. . .
– Airports- multi cultural, language barriers, more opportunities to see people dressed in hiker gear (because we all know that that makes flying more comfortable), neck pillows, jet lag, people with frayed nerves
–Buses/Subways/trains- I’m a fan of the pretending you didn’t make eye contact face. And the in seat boogie
-Hair Salons– People are really really funny about their hair
-Malls- one word, “segways”
-Park Benches- excellent choice to observe hilarious family interaction
-University- best results are obtained during finals and or orientation
-Walmart- preferably after 10pm . . . why? . . . why not!!!!!!
My conclusion??? Yes, people-watching is an art. So its your turn, where are your favorite places to people watch (I know u guys do it) and why?! Feel free to expand on mine. Ta Ra!
Back in October I wrote a post here about switching from conventional deodorant to a salt stone. Though there were some that flat out laughed at me, most of my family was like hey, we’ll see what happens to him. I think this might be due to the fact that one of us is usually in some sort of experiment like this, so its viewed as no big deal.
So after making sure that I didn’t start smelling like an alpaca, some became curious. I am now happy to declare that I’ve effectively pulled 3 out the 5 other people in my household over to the salty side!!!!! Woot for embracing the dirty hippie inside us all!!!
Despite its universal influence, art is ridiculously relative. Seriously! Think for a moment about whichever avenue of art that you’re fascinated with, be it painting, music, dance, poetry, whatever. Now in under a minute, try and explain the feeling that it gives you. Not in random wordy “terminology” but try to really really explain how it makes you feel. Why do you like it? What about it is powerful enough to give you an emotional response? What is art? How do we define something that can mean something completely different to each individual person? I decided to ask a writer, a minimalist, and a fashion illustrator their for help in my struggle to understand this, by asking a simply complex question: What does art mean to you?
” There’s no limit to what art has to teach us. Take a painting, for example: In the white space we can find a lesson in simplicity. In the colors lie a message of unity. In the composition, a lesson in organization and managing what might otherwise be an ugly mess of unwanted shapes and figures, events and people.
When I encounter art in any of its forms–a painting, a sculpture, music, film–I cannot help but focus on only that. It’s not that everything else disappears, but rather that it all fades gently into the background. It’s like the world and all of its problems, stresses, and troubles still exist, but that’s okay, because at the center of it all is this amazing piece of art. It’s grounding. It brings me back to the present, to “now,” and I do my best to take that with me when I leave.”
“What art means is more of a feeling than an objective opinion that can be put into words. At a glance, it tells the history of the artist, those who have influenced them and their state of mind. Art surrounds us on a daily basis, and can be found in anything — even the most mundane of objects.”
“The pure idea of art seems so complex to me that my brain scrambles at the taught of it. And whenever someone claims to understand it or tries to pinpoint it to one single point, I think how naive they must be. Result of this is that I have no idea what art is to me.
All I know are little images, kind of memories of feelings I have. Story my father tells me over and over again how my favourite book when I was 2 was a book on Picasso… how I used to stare for hours at Jean Louis David paintings… How I can listen to entire Carmina Burana numerous times…. How I felt overwhelmed first few times I came to Tate modern. Things like this.
I rationalize so many things in my life and this is one place where I want to stay completely intuitive. Of course I realize this might be a lazy way of understanding art, and if it is…then bummer. :-)”
Each response made me smile. When reading their words of description you can almost see their thoughts and inspirations in their eyes . But even after all of this, I’m not sure we answered the question I raised. How do we define something that can mean something completely different to each individual person? . . . In my opinion, we can’t really, and I think thats the point I’m trying to make.
Bob Dylan is an excellent example of this. When asked why or how he got to where he was as an artist, he seemed almost frustrated at people’s attempt to to understand and classify. I realize that by writing this post I might be going against that principle that I claim to try and abide by ha ha. But I do so not out of an attempt to define or compartmentalize. But in an effort to encourage the embracement of the art that we can find in our everyday life. The world we live in is constantly spinning faster and faster. If we take the time to stop at beauty and be inspired, art will enrich our lives.
I just had an interesting experience. I have trouble retaining information, right. Seriously, I don’t know whats wrong with me. If you tell my your name I’ll most likely forget it. So when I receive instructions I have to write them down and repeat them to myself multiple times in order to actually do it. This makes functioning in a professional setting sometimes difficult.
So today I finished interpreting early so my boss sent me on a few errands. (which btw was a miracle that I was even there!!! I had a 7:00 final and I woke up a t 642!!!!! I live on the East Side!!!!) Picking up and dropping off paperwork at different halls, no big deal right, well not for most people. He starts firing off names of halls and directions and names and I had to stop him. . . “can you please please let me write this down.” So I was good? . . . no because Stefan Albani can’t keep things simple. Anyone who knows me well knows that. Its like when I buy pop. . . should I get the 2 for 3 or the 10 for twenty!!!! ahhh!!!!!! (thats a rant for another time).
Therefore I began my journey to the general vicinity of where I knew my destination was, which ended up being wrong. Not because i wasn’t told where i should go, and not because I wasn’t practically drawn a map of where to go, but because I’m me and pretty much just was confused for no reason whatsoever. SO!!!! I do what I usually do in this situation. . . Admit that I’m a dork and ask for directions. And this leads me to my point in this rather pointless rant. . . . wherever you are and even if you aren’t as big of a moron as I am, ASK 4 DIRECTIONS!!!! U’ll thank me, trust me. Even if you face a language barrier you have more of a chance of getting somewhere on time with the help of a local than wondering clueless on your own pride. The sooner everyone (I’m mostly pointing at my male readers, sorry guys the stereotype is usually true) embraces this, the less lost we will all be.
In addition to getting you to where you need to go, asking for directions will also present some awesome if not hilarious experiences. For example in the heart of Paris when we had no Idea where we were going, my dad and sister asked a local for directions to somewhere I don’t remember. After a few minutes of struggle ending in eventual success my dad thanked the gentleman sincerely. He replied with a hilarious and quite perfect “Jamaican cool runnings” accent in probably the only english he knew “No problem man!” Needless to say that story gets told a lot, why?! Cuz its hilarious! and It wouldn’t have happened if dad hadn’t put his ego aside.
I’D LIKE TO INTRODUCE THE
I’M MARRYING A CANADIAN AND VENTURING TO THE GREAT WHITE NORTH!!!!
ONLINE ART SALE
WHAT WON’T FIT IN MY CARRY ON HAS TO GO!
I’m back from Denver! I love roadtrips, in fact they’re one of my favorite means of travel. With the right people they can be fun and hilarious. Mind you sitting in a tin box for hours crammed with people can be rough. This requires certain skills that can be mastered with time. And so in an effort to collect such knowledge for the benefit of people everywhere, I present a list of my personal favorite roadtripping skills. Which is funny cuz technically I don’t particularly like lists but I’ve been doing alot of them lately. . . meh who’s being technical.
sleeping in awkward positions – this skill will be your best friend when its hour 12 and you’vesurvived on nothing but chips and rockstar. It helps if you’re comfortable with the people you’re with ha ha, but if you’re not! this skill is that much more important! My current preferred position is scooched down in the seat with legs up on the window. . . aka bad posture, but hey! I’m asleep! leave posture out of this!!!
stay out of prank wars trust me on this one. . . just don’t start, or trying to sleep will be the last of your concerns.
holding it -there aren’t enough rest stops in new mexico. . .
not holding it– men, the world is your urinal (I’ve found ditches to be particularly perfect for this.
sing alongs– not only do they pass time, they burn calories. . . that is if you sing in a very animated fashion like I do. . . he he.
staying awake– this is mostly geared to the driver. . . mmhmm. . . you know the guy operating the vehicle that is actually a loaded weapon!!! this can be accomplished in many ways. . . such as coffee, energy drinks, talking, listening to music, mixing coffee with energy drinks, foot tapping, counting mile markers, practicing your spanish. . . now if you aren’t the driver your choices expand greatly because the danger of killing everybody in the vehicle go down by at least eighty percent. This opens up things like watching movies, reading, playing rockband, thumbwars, blogging, texting, or cooking on your George Foreman grill that is plugged into the powerstrip which is in turn plugged into the cigarette lighter.
spotting randomness– look kids! DEER! ! ! as a kid I could never see what dad was pointing out. Partly because I was too short and partly because I was too . . . short. So if you’re not short, this shouldn’t be as big of a problem. If you’re of normal stature and are still having trouble I suggest practicing with friends or getting a little brother.
all things tech– from programming the gps to consulting almighty google for the closest Starbucks, techies are highly suggested for every car group.
city driving skills– you can’t stay on the highway forever, yes that includes parallel parking
stretching– this goes right along with #1
reading– I put this as a skill cuz I cannot do it without getting carsick, and I envy those that can
beware of rattlesnakes– I can’t stress this one enough!!!
Help me make this list longer, what roadtrip skills have you gathered?
I live in El Paso TX, a car town. Here, the fastest way to get from east to west or north to central is via car, hands down. The only transit system is the bus, something that frankly, most people here are terrified of. Most people who take the bus, do so because they have to. People who fall under the “masses that want to and can afford to be green” category that the green marketing machines are targeting are usually well off enough to own a car, do own a car, and would never fathom taking the bus. I’ve heard story after study about how slow, terrible, and inefficient the bus system here is.
So today. . . my last class to interpret for at work was cancelled, leaving me with a thought. . . “I don’t yet have a ride home today. . . .why don’t I take the bus!” And so, putting my fears aside, and striving to step forward from the masses, I googled the Sun Metro schedule, walked to a stop, and boarded my first El Pasoan bus.
The verdict? . . . why haven’t I done this before?! For 75 cents a 40 min (in traffic) car ride to my house took an hour and twenty min. including transfer time. The bus was clean and the people were friendly. When I was confused, the drivers came to my rescue. Sure going by car is twice as fast ha ha. However if you have the time, its a cheaper, greener, and a local economy boosting means of getting around. Another thing I found out was Utep students make up a huge number of passengers who came to to this conclusion a long time ago.
I’m not saying to sell your car. Realistically, most households that don’t live in a big city need to own one. However! Wherever you are, take advantage of whatever transit is in your community! My hope is that places like El Paso that have a less than par mass transit system will face an increase in demand. An increase that will in turn eventually lead to things like actual metros and bike lanes instead of desert landscaping! and who knows maybe this will spur North America as a whole to catch up with Europe and Asia’s genius railways and such! eh? eh!
I’m a pretty big music junkie. I have a habit of raiding friends Itunes libraries like a lot of you do I’m sure. Isn’t it amazing how there are usually a few albums on our ipods that get played over and over and over. . . no matter how much music we steal. I dunno, is it just me?
Here’s a few albums that I can listen to straight through for hours, without skipping a song. My current favorite albums in order of when they popped into my head. . .
Joshua Tree– U2
O– Damien Rice
Aha Shake Heartbreak– Kings of Leon
The Bootleg Series– Bob Dylan
American Idiot– Green day
Elephant– The White Stripes
Siamese Dream– Smashing Pumpkins
Strict Joy– The Swell Season
No Name Face– Lifehouse
Our Endless Numbered Days– Iron and Wine
Bjork’s Greatest Hits– Bjork
what bout u guys?
Check out what I just found on the front page of CNN this morning! London’s public biking system seems to be catching on well. Is it wishful thinking to to assume that Barry Neild saw my post yesterday and decided it would be a good idea to write a similar one? he he
- Why London needs a cycle revolution (cnn.com)
I paint extremely unconventionally. . . and I feel free because of it. Its kind of like minimalism. . . just as a sense of freedom is attained by stripping the self of possessions, I feel that artistic “freedom” can be attained by creating whatever it is that you feel like creating, whatever way you want to create it! So here’s a list of random favorite rules to bend and break in no particular order. . .
– Prime Just say no! I like the way watered down acrylic soaks into the texture of raw canvas.
– Mrs. Prentice’s Classical Music Bjork is! appropriate for the classroom
– Work Alone Collaboration can help you find your identity as an artist. Network! Blog! Connect!
– Learn From The Greats There’s more inspiration on the street than in a museum
– Focus daydream. . . lots
– Brushes he he, so restricting
– Painting Clothes. . . nah, (my wardrobe hates me)
– Hobby lobby Canvas make your own!!!! And use random scraps of clothes, its green and cheap which is also green, but in an entirely different way
– Canvas In General– paint on ur walls!!!!
-photo by Dario
Those of you who know me well know I’m into quite a few things. . . I’ve gone through quite a few stages. . . Painting, writing, sketching, photography, blogging, biking, running, sewing, dancing, crocheting, . . . lots of stuff.
The reason being because I like alot of things. I see something, it interests me and I think hey! I could do that. . . Now it doesn’t happen out of a sense of wanting to be good at everything. . . like a competitive spirit of wanting to dominate all facets of what my brain might be capable of . . . In fact its quite the opposite cuz I know more than anybody that these projects that I start usually . . . and I say usually cuz sometimes I’m proved wrong, but usually I don’t stay on one subject long enough to do it “well.”
This is why half of my paintings are unfinished, why you can see white thread in the seams of my grey suit, and why I still don’t know Spanish. You see, I’m culturally ADD. I have a problem. Call it ADD, call it lack of focus, call it lack of dedication, call it whatever you want. . . the fact of the matter is I start lots and lots of projects, but only finish a select few. And I love it as much as I hate it.
So recently, in preparation of my inevitable move north, I’ve been going through alot of my things and getting rid of the unwanted and/or useless crapola that I’ve somehow accumulated in my year of living here . . . its ridiculous. . . seriously . . . However! Doing so brought to mind a painting I saw at an art show early in the summer and forgot to post. Oh how this statement rings true.
So the past week has been pretty crazy! Why? My girlfriend came down from Ontario to visit and well. . . I had a little surprise for her when she landed 🙂 Lets just say she answered a very important question I had for her and her answer was yes!!!!!!! So full of smiles right now its crazy ha ha. . . Its funny how much love influences art. Even if you hate love I would find it very foolish to deny its influence on the arts. The pursuit, the attainment, and the loss of love are timeless pillars of inspiration to everything from painting to poetry. . . any thoughts? And Dario. . . I give u permission to rant away ha ha
I have loved to paint for as long as I can remember. . . I specifically remember as a kid running my fingers along the paper and into the paint. Feeling the cool slipperiness contrast with the rough texture of the paper, in what seemed like an epic battle of good and evil, love and hate, rich and poor. . . for some reason feeling the goop between my fingers gave me a sense of lack of control, a sense that I absolutely adored. . . I could manipulate what couldn’t be manipulated in a sense, without manipulating it. Tame the untamable without taming it. . . u see by breaking the rules that didn’t apply to me yet I felt a sense of freedom. . . I’m not sure what it was or how to describe it, but it just somehow became my outlet. . . from a very early age. I could somehow take the complexity of my human emotion and translate it into something people could see. . .something visual . . . something not in my head, but out of my heart.
So today my friend who is about 12 years old came up to me smiling, and in his hands an abstract watercolor that he did just for me. . . I coudn’t help but smile, a very big smile. Because deep down I know that the painting thats now on my wall was as much for him as it was for me. I don’t know why he did it or what he was feeling at the time. . . but I know that he was able to take what was in his heart and create with it, and that my friends is something beautiful 🙂
Today was my first day window cleaning without conventional deodorant or antiperspirant! Does did a deer lick to the armpit cut it? ? ? the anwer? . . . . YES! and I got proof from others whom I forced to sniff me! What loving friends and famly 🙂 lol, for real, thats love. . . or faith. . . one of the two. . . which is it?