Category Archives: Life

Coachella 2012

Image

[Found on Pinterest]

While there are no more tickets left, Coachella is still something we need to discuss. Hopefully, those of you who are die-hard music fans and hippies at heart have already purchased your ticket. For you, this period of time when the wind blows warm, steady waves of dust through your hair, a simple note of a guitar being played in the far-off distance, and the whimsical musings of a regular bohemian bombshell in her natural habitat, is imperative to your health and general well being.

That said, I’ve compiled a few video’s to steady your withdrawals until the big weekend.

First, I have to say, the 2012 lineup is absolutely extraordinary. I mean, every year it is, but I personally can’t wait to see all these beautiful artists in one, small zone in the entire world. Yes, I am a little obsessed with music. And by obsessed I mean “can’t live without it” and by that I mean “I would literally die without it.”  My veins would shrivel up, my lungs would collapse, my brain would fry and my heart would cry its final cry in a pathetic attempt to save itself from this atrocious travesty.

Some artists I can’t wait the 31 days and 6 hours to see: (but who’s counting?)

Bon Iver

Lissie

Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg

The Shins

The Black Keys

Feist

Radiohead

Mazzy Star

Calvin Harris

Florence and the Machine

For those of you who are pining with jealousy and seething in anger—there’s always next year! You snooze you lose!


Of Monsters and Men “Little Talks”


Music video by Of Monsters and Men performing Little Talks. (C) 2012 Universal Republic Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

A fun little indie type band I discovered a couple days ago. (Am I slow in the music industry or what?!) How this amazing, talented, eclectic band has gotten past me is beyond me.

If it was an unrealistic world in which you could do what you pleased, you could put together Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros and Mumford and Sons, I believe they would sound like this. Enjoy rocking out to this song, because I think this band is on to something. At least, their views on Youtube tell me. I guarantee you’ll rape the repeat button 🙂


Kim K’s Love Life (or lack thereof) and Other Annoyances

You know the saying, “Don’t sweat the small stuff”? And then someone more annoying than the first says, “It’s ALL small stuff.”

Well, I do. I try not to. But I do.

                                                    Annoyance 1.
Those people over at  _______ _______.com.
 Hint: Rhymes with Lockedjar Rivalries. (IF you read blogs, you have probably stumbled upon them. They are really popular for some reason.)
Asinine.
I cannot stand it. 
‘Oh we had the BEST day today! My hubby made us coffee out of our new french press and we sat in the garden and watched “Queensley” (their bulldog) frolic around. It was soooooo great. Then I did 5 (yes, FIVE) D.I.Y. projects, checked on my herbs (they’re so delightful and can’t wait to have all my spring dinner parties) and last but not least read to the blind for a few hours. Not to mention I have a baby and I’m pregnant.  So much JOY in life!’ [This is an exaggerated excerpt I made up entirely myself. But they remind me of this.]
Really? Who says that? 
                                               Annoyance 2. 
Acquiring a class C drivers license doesn’t take much knowledge or common sense, unfortunately. And that presents itself while on the road. The fact that my horn is broken doesn’t help the situation. And no, it wasn’t because I was “over-using” it–ahem! KJ– It went out all by itself. Clearly, I need to acquire a “driver” and sit with a blindfold in the backseat just to keep calm, and get from A to B without a massively inconvenient heart palpitation.  Moving on, there are a few courtesies that should be widely known by all California drivers: 
  • Traffic moves. It is constantly changing. Just like Kim Kardashian’s husbands. {no! what?} Therefore, you have to acclimate your vehicle accordingly.  Speed limit does not matter. If you are going 70 mph and in the fast lane because the speed limit is 65 so you think, technically, I am in the correct lane. WRONG!  If there is traffic going faster, stay to the right. Don’t make everyone pass you on the right.
  • Buckle your children up, for the love of god. It’s 2012. Strap. Your. Child. In. Twice this month I saw children in the car who were wildly raucously gyrating about in the back seat. I uninhibitedly glared at the driver next to me until the light turned green. I’m not sure they even noticed.  They’re just as spastic as their children. *sigh*
  • These Southern CA drivers really irk me during winter…  And I bet this bugs some of you, too.  R A I N. Even though it’s just a sprinkle, people tend to view it as a storm or blizzard of historic proportions.  They slow down by about 30 mph and think it’s perfectly normal to be practically crawling down I5.

Annoyance 3.

Close your mouth when you’re eating. It’s the most disheartening, foul, shameful habit ever. I do not need to see what you’re {so loudly} chewing. Yuck.

Annoyance 4.

Don’t be so paranoid. Some people pick up their yapper while walking past my dog.  Like he’s going to jump up and eat you?  I have him on a leash, for one. And two, he’s not a cannibal. Besides, even if he was, I would give MORE power to him. Because yappers/floor mops are no good to me anyway.

Annoyance 5.

Mormons and Polygamy. They are gross and I don’t even want to talk about it anymore.

Annoyance 6.

Cell phone providers.  They are corrupt and obnoxious as a whole.  I like to deal with them as little as possible.

Annoyance 7.

The bread from Trader Joe’s.  It goes bad in like 3 days. What am I supposed to do about that?

Annoyance 8.

Politics on social media sites like Facebook. I learned my lesson when I said “I stand with Planned Parenthood.”

Annoyance 9.

Overly pompous people. Cool. You live well. You’re successful. I can tell by your FB check-ins and updates. Good for you. Annoying for us. Look up “humble” in the dictionary, bro. I’m sure you’ve never heard of it.

Annoyance 10.

The asshole in the Porsche today with smog coming out of his pipes.  For miles.  Hey, let’s just move backwards in life & time & money & research and forget about the detrimental effects cars & polution have on our environment & the dolphins & wales & fish in the sea & birds & plants & animals that are dying because assholes like him, who make our air THAT MUCH WORSE. Who knows how long he’s been driving like that.  Should be illegal.  Go get a smog check, douche bag. Or have one of your 9 assistants do it.

To leave on a good note, back to Pinterest, my latest obsession.

Namaste ☮

 

HERE’S WHAT 3 THINGS I’M OBSESSED WITH…

I stole that title ↑ from Andy Cohen…

who I am also obsessed with.

So today I’ve been glued to my computer doing Excel spreadsheets all day. The only thing that’s making me not want to run away and take 9 shots of whiskey are these three musicians/bands/artists I’ve discovered.  They’re all taking at shot at winning the popularity contest with me, being that they’ve all consecutively remained on repeat for the past few days. What do you think?

Gotye: “Somebody That I Used To Know”

Lana del Rey: “Off To The Races” Amazing lyrics and such a fun beat!

Lana del Rey: “Blue Jeans” (She deserves two videos) V-Day music? 😉

Nico Vega: “Medicine Man” Acoustic Version (fun little band)

Have a good weekend y’all! (I’m getting ready for my Seth clan reunion next year in South Carolaaaaana.)


All my friends are teachers… and I <3 it

It used to be “nurses” instead of “teachers.”

I’m glad it’s changed.

Mr. Bodwell… Mrs. Tremblay…Mr. Green… annnd that’s about it. Those are the names of the teachers I remember from school. And that’s quite pathetic, really. I blame 40% of my memory lapse on just not paying much attention in school, and the other 60% on my TEACHERS NOT MAKING ME WANT to pay attention.

There IS a way to effectively communicate to children without them wanting to rip their eyeballs out. If you figure that out, you’re golden. I’m not going to pretend I know how to do that. After all, I don’t want to be a teacher. BUT, I know there is a way.

I came across this Youtube video on my friend Lauren’s Pinterest page. She’s one of my friends who is selfless and motivated and kind enough to want to become a school teacher. And it makes me so proud to know that there are more people out there who are wanting to make a difference in children’s lives, because as I have said in the past, children are our future. The next generations ruler’s of the world. And if you watch this video, you’ll see that if all teachers were like this, we would be on our way to the most successful country in the world.

“Tell me and I’ll forget, show me and I may remember, involve me and I’ll understand.” -Chinese Proverb


Since No One Else Is Talking About It… Full Version

“Modern medicine is a negation of health. It isn’t organized to serve human health, but only itself, as an institution. It makes more people sick than it heals.” – Ivan Ilich

Our society has a major malfunction: the inability to relate to the unknown. It makes people extremely uncomfortable. It’s easier to convey a rather trite (sorry. Actually, I’m not sorry) yet very relevant  disease like breast cancer, AIDS and even organizations like D.A.R.E. to a community. Yet somewhere between children’s leukemia and men’s prostate cancer, we forget about a major, unyielding cyclone that is affecting more adolescents then Justin Beiber. And that parasite is drugs.

It’s a destructive monster that engulfs every aspect of your life, including your family. It ruins everything in its path, beckoning you to flirt with the happiness and numbness that it provides with– sometimes–  just one try.

A major reason why I wanted to dive head first into this depressing atrophy, is because of New York Times Best Selling author Ellen Hopkins. Hopkins is somewhat of a savior to children and young adults of my generation because she addresses the growing epidemic of drug use in our society. In her Crank trilogy, which features Crank, Glass and Fallout, she describes the way drugs (mainly crystal meth, or methamphetamine) took over her daughter’s life. In her daughter’s words. The way she reaches children all over the world with her words is indescribable, and is best depicted by this short excerpt from Crank:

Just Before The Drop

“You know how you
stand and stand and stand
in line for the most
gigantic incredible roller
coaster
you’ve ever dared attempt.

Anticipation swelling,
minute by minute by minute,
you choose to wait even
longer, to ride in the front
car
and finally it’s your turn.

They buckle you in, lock the
safety bar with a jolting clunk!
Hook engaged, the chain jerks
you forward. You start to
climb
Crank-crank-crank.

Cresting the top, time
moves into overtime
as you wait for that scant
hesitation, just before you
drop
You know how you feel
at that instant? Well, that’s
exactly how it feels when you
shake hands with the
monster.”

Some reviewers relish the fact that they believe her work is merely glorifying the use of drugs, and that it de-sensitizes children to it and does not portray the effects drugs really do have. I have to disagree. Hopkins is reaching out to adolescents who might be too scared to ask questions– and simply in that she is raising awareness. And we all know raising awareness is the first step to making a change. Children who are not able to distinguish fantasy from reality (or rather right from wrong) should indeed not read this book. On the other hand, many schools carry her books and are used to teach various methods such as verse, poetry, and assonance.

Before we slip into book review reverie,  I want to bring up another issue that is seldom discussed. Mostly because prodigious drug companies make sure of it.

Prescription drugs.  Are they more addictive (and more widely a problem) than the dirty crystal meth and black tar heroin that we’ve all grown up to know as “dirty” and “disgusting” and think “I don’t know ANYONE who does that, and don’t hang around it.”  The problem with prescription drugs, is it’s much easier to circumvent and justify why you “need” them. Not to mention a professional doctor actually diagnosed you with Aderall. (Can we all agree most adults do not genuinely exhibit ADD?) I know ADD is detrimentally overprescirbed to children, as well. I feel like drugs are viewed as so: Heroin to prescription drugs is a run down shack to a mansion in beverly hills. But the mansion has a mask on. Prescriptions are socially accepted. Heroin is not.

We’re becoming genetically programmed to believe we cannot exist without some form of instant gratification. I clearly remember when I got my first digital camera. The belief that one could see the picture instantly after it was taken was amazing! And the whole world agreed. Everyone is trying to get ahead. Then it was smart phones, to make sure you had the world at your fingertips. Then it was Steve Jobs, coming in with all sorts of technology that made it possible to achieve almost anything from a voice command  to your iphone.  DVR’s so we don’t miss a single show, planning for planning, the busy lives of regular families, school, carpool, sports, bills, jobs, etc. News gets delivered to our phones and we do not sit down and read the newspaper anymore. No one takes vacations without turning their phone off. Try once, TURN IT OFF. See what happens. Just when we thought we had it all, we can basically now drive a car without even really paying attention. Monster energy drinks supposedly make a third-quarter net income of $56.5 million. That’s based on the fact that they have tons of endorsements and they sell the drink like it’s guaranteed to get you laid. You have determined you cannot perform without your superficial energy drink.

Pharmaceutical companies are a multi-billion dollar organization. Some people who work there probably make millions of dollars per year.  What do you think drives them to this wealth? Anything in particular they do to keep rolling in the dough? Stop prescribing? Stop enabling? Tell doctors’ offices to start telling patients to see a homeopathist instead? No. People want a quick fix. They don’t want to change their lives, their priorities, their plans. They just want a little yellow pill in the morning and a blue one at night.

In Food Matters, a documentary essentially about ‘you are what you eat’ and loosely based on Socrates quote “Let thy food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food” further defends my theory on pharmaceutical companies: “Good health makes a lot of sense. But it doesn’t make a lot of dollars. Modern medicine revolves around ‘a pill for every ill’ and that’s the way the sickness industry wants to keep it.”

No one wants to make healthy choices for dinner because it takes too long and they don’t have enough time. Hamburger Helper (or worse, fast food) is all they know. But that’s a whole other tragedy.

And as long as we remain this LAZY, those pharmaceutical companies will soon take over the world — if they have not already. So as long as people are content with those yellow and blue pills, nothing needs to change.

Which brings me back to instant gratification. For most, we need caffeine in the morning to jumpstart our day, and _____________ (insert alcoholic beverage of choice here) to wind down the evening. For some, merely caffeine alone does not adhere to our needs, and, lucky for them, their colossal insurance company Blue Cross is more than happy to provide them with such resources. It’s a stigma, left for the patient to drown in while the doctor is glorified for their intelligence and understanding. Greed has overcome their offices. And the genuine care for a patients health and well-being is left on the back burner while money and recognition is crucial. The problem with Rx’s is they simultaneously help you get through the day while also enabling you to become more dependent on them. Remember that feeling in the poem, “… just before the drop?” Well, that can be achieved without the help of Vicodin, unbeknownst to many.

Soon, you can’t get up in the morning without antidepressants to clear the void in your mind, and the pain relievers for a back injury you sustained years ago. One which would be healed adequately through exercise, physical therapy and some massages here and there.  Then you blindly accept “necessary” pills for anxiety and ADD so you can float through your entire day without ever having to have felt any authentic feelings that you need to be healthily alive. All for these non-existent ailments.  Yet you are so happy and accomplished, it’s hard to see what you’re doing wrong.

Before we embark on this petrous path I want to make it immensely clear that I believe some people do actually NEED medication.  Cancer patients, people with HIV, people who are diagnosed with clinical depression or multi-personality disorder.  I am not completely insensitive.  And for those who actually depend on this medicine to live, I sympathize and cannot imagine what it would be like.

Although, relying on drugs to keep you alive (ha, that’s somewhat ironic) and not just for recreational purposes such as “I get so much done in my day” “I can’t live without it” “I am a full time mother” “I am a full time student” “I am a full time plumber” “I am a full time lawyer.” It doesn’t matter. Most medicine is being over-prescribed. It’s abuse when you rely on drugs to make it possible to sleep at night from all the drugs that kept you awake during the day. I can’t tell you how many kids I knew in college who were prescribed aderall to “get through exams” or xanax because they were “stressed.” I certainly don’t condone it, but people who take a xanax on a plane for fear of it going down is different then people who are prescribed a daily dosage of it when it is clearly not imperative to their health or well-being.

So, are prescription drugs indeed more dangerous than drugs like Crystal Meth, Heroin and Cocaine? All the drugs we were taught to stay away from because it will eventually lead you to a very dark place? Literally. In an alley way with the other vagrants not unlike yourself?  True, it will take you there. But prescription drugs aren’t so different. Here is a short excerpt from The Sun magazine, about a woman who avows her battle with prescription drugs:

“In college you start to have unpredictable panic attacks: sweating, dizziness, stomach cramping, feelings of impending doom, the need to return to your home immediately. The doctor prescribes Zoloft (an anti-depressant) daily and Xanax (an antianxiety drug) as needed. Now the panic attacks are less frequent but you feel a pervasive sense of numbness and gloom. Then come the headaches and insomnia. Maybe a different antidepressant will work better, the doctor says. Try Paxil. That’s good for anxiety, too. But you can barely tolerate the disorientation and double vision. Let’s see how you do on Remeron.… and you still can’t sleep without nightmares. Try some antipsychotics for the nightmares and some Neurontin (an antiseizure medication) for the headaches. You gain 30 pounds in a few months… Maybe some amphetamines will help you lose that weight. Phentermine slims you down, but you start having diarrhea every day. Getting through college is proving to be much more difficult than you thought. The antiseizure medication makes you feel like a zombie. You’re always tired, but you can’t sleep. Valium, Sonata, Ambien – none of them help. Instead they make you hallucinate. You try to kill your sisters dog with a cane because you see him for the malevolent alien he really is. Topomax (for the headaches and depression)… You can’t study because when you try to read, the words are screaming inside your brain… On top of that, your thyroid has become imbalanced, and you need to take hormones for it. Your mood spirals downward. Maybe you have an undiagnosed case of ADD. Try some Aderall. You chip a few teeth from clenching them so hard. You begin contemplating suicide again…Wellbutrin …Celexa … Bleeding stomach ulcers and kidney stones. You drop out of college and gain 40 pounds from Seroquel, the only drug that let’s you sleep… You start believing you aren’t really real. But, hey, at least you no longer suffer from panic attacks.”

– Jenny B.

After I took massage therapy classes years ago, it taught me that so much can be achieved without the help of western medicine. At the time I thought my hippy, barefoot, linen wearing teacher had lost it.  Herbs? Natural remedies? I wasn’t buying it.  And that’s probably the problem with everyone else. And it makes me think, did this author ever try a nice long walk? A hike? Watching the waves or the sun set? Meditating?  No matter how cliche these ideas are, there’s a REASON you see that old 94 year-old man practically crawling down the sidewalk putting all his welfare into his walker. You might think, “He’s an idiot! Go back to the nursing home, you’ll get lost.” But the old wise man knows it’s because sunshine and exercise will bring clarity, happiness and good health.



Love and Marriage {go together like a horse & carriage?}

Credit: priorengagementblog.com 

I have always considered marriage as the most interesting event of ones life, the foundation of happiness or misery.”

-GEORGE WASHINGTON, letter to Burwell Bassett, May 23, 1785

I’d say most women grow up dreaming of their wedding day. What will the wedding dress look like? Who will be their bridesmaids? What color dresses will THEY have? Location, food, music, flowers, guests, seating charts, finances, cake, rehearsal dinner, gifts, thank you cards, ceremony, and most important, who will be the groom? [Think Jaws soundtrack.]
All that literally makes my head spin. (Think modern day Exorcist. I am falling off my chair from the sudden motion… really.)
And I’m sure someone reading this might think, with no doubt whatsoever, “She is afraid of commitment.” But they’re wrong. I’ve lived happily with my boyfriend for three years now and all is gravy. We have tattoos of each others initials.  I figured I could always say “KJC” means “Kingston Jewish Council,” “Kinabatangan Jungle Camp” or “Knoxville Juggling Club.” The possibilites really are endless. [Wink.]
I have a hard time believing the real reason people get married these days. The statistics speak for themselves. About 50% of marriages end in divorce. Which leads me to believe people ARE NOT getting married for the right reasons. Or they’re getting married too young, which is actually proven fact. [Don’t believe me? Look at this site.]
What are the fundamentals of a long lasting relationship? Trust? Communication? Love? Respect? I don’t believe marriage is one of them. Now, don’t get me wrong. I do agree with the idea of marriage, when it’s for the RIGHT reasons. I someday will get married. My point is, I feel like a lot of people get married as somewhat of a crutch so they don’t have to face what is really happening. Like it’s the next step in being happy. Like people tend to do with children. “Let’s have a baby. It will fix our problems.” Although people don’t admit it, they are doing it. I used wonder why these people were so gullible, so naive, so anxious. And then it hit me: Our society looks at marriage as the “norm.” People who are married are on the right path. They’re taking the next step in the right direction. If it’s not for the right reasons, though, they’re in for a big surprise. I hate to sound pessimistic, but I’m being totally honest.

Credit: Times Union

I’m sure other women have the same ideas about marriage as I do. As for the others, who feel the need to fall so deep into a non-existent world of a perfect relationship, do they ever ask themselves: who is this wedding and marriage for? It’s sad to me that so many young couples feel the need to provide a lavish show for hundreds of people whom many they barely even know. Who is it for?
It started so long ago there isn’t even a record of the first “marriage.” There are records of the first rules and regulations regarding this “holy matrimony” or “wedlock.”  It was made for people who wanted to publicly show their commitment to each other, whether it was for legal, social, libidinal, emotional, economic, spiritual or religious reasons. And a lot of marriages were arranged, back then. It still applies to people in South and Southeast Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Not to be confused with “forced marriage” where the person can force you to marry them (um, sounds the same to me.)

Credit: Yourlovetips.com

I wonder if it would be better for an arranged marriage then for some people to get married on their own.  People feel they need to validate their relationship with marriage. What’s that about? Getting married is for you and your partner. No one else. If you’re having doubts, ask yourself this: If you could do whatever you wanted– regardless of what anyone said, did or thought– what would YOU chose to do? Once you have answered honestly, decide whether or not it’s really what you truly want.
Just because you’re in love (and even have a family) it doesn’t necessarily mean you are obligated to tie the knot. Our society needs to get a grip on this concept. It’s becoming more and more common, and shaming or looking down on people because of it is absolutely ludicrous. And medieval.
Looking at statistics for all this can also be seen here and here (humor me and look at the latter, which I chose purely for entertainment, Bible News, which has a rainbow colored theme.)
Just because you are married, doesn’t mean you have somehow magically erased all problems regarding infidelity. If you’re not happy, you’re not happy. If you think a wedding ring and a signed document will keep yourself (or partner) from straying if you are not satisfied in your relationship, think again. If someone is going to cheat, they’re going to cheat. It has nothing to do with whether or not they are married. (Well, I take that back. Maybe it does, to an extent. But only monetary-wise.)
A lot of people think if you have a marriage, you have a good foundation and tangible proof that you will succeed. I couldn’t disagree more. It all depends on this marriage. Married young? Had kids right away? Husband goes to work for the family business and wife can do the rest? She doesn’t really have a choice… but does she care? 20 years down the road she probably will. And then her life will have passed her by.
What about the person who dates regularly, travels the world, and carries out their dreams? Makes a living by something they’re passionate about? Finds someone they want to spend the rest of their lives with? After discovering who they are as individuals, and merging the two, to make an incredible long-lasting relationship consisting of TWO people, (to clarify, one and one make two, not one.) THAT is the relationship I will place my bet on.
Know who YOU are, and know who YOU want to be by your side for the rest of your life.
Marriage isn’t for anyone else, it should be for you and your partner. Don’t get married to fix something, get a dog. Or a therapist. Don’t get married for anything other then you want to spend the rest of your life with this person, period.

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