Monthly Archives: February 2011

And so the world shifts

Because it is, you know. Shifting. Morphing. It’s not only true at a societal, social, human level, but geologically the plates of the earth are shifting in a way and at a rate not seen in our lifetime. Or for many, many lifetimes. If you’re as spiritual as I am, you know there is no way your physical world can shift without your inner world – and that of those around you – following suit. Things are changing, people are changing. In as many uplifting ways as worrying ways. Systems are collapsing to make room for a better way of being. What we’ve seen in Egypt is just the beginning. The power of the people, of cooperation, of hope. I know I’ve felt it within myself – a shift in my cells, my heart. And it’s wonderful to see it reflected on a global level.

That’s why, when Julie told me about the documentary, I Am – currently touring the country along with its director, Tom Shadyac – I knew I had to secure my place in the audience. I saw the film when it premiered in Seattle this past Friday, and also participated in a Q&A with Tom afterward. It was incredible.

Check the website to find out if and when it hits your town. If you can’t make a screening, wait for it to hit Netflix. In the meantime, enjoy this preview. And never, never, never lose hope.

Yves Behar designs a vibrator

WOW. Where does he get off?! (Ummmm….)

And why the fuck can’t I figure out how this thing works? What is that little notch going on there? It’s like a vaginal shoehorn.

Tweet of the month (possibly year/century)

Courtesy of one Amy Ozols, who is a fucking brilliant, superbly hilarious writer for LNJF. Follow her on Twitter and share in the delight.

That Jeopardy robot is fucking with us. It got that question wrong on purpose so we’ll forget it’s going to murder everyone. 4:41 PM Feb 15th via web

Why women (not men) give birth

Dr. Oz butchered JF live on his show – i.e., removed a pre-cancerous mole from his hand. This was of course the best scene, when Jimmy pitched a HUGE fit while they injected local anesthetic into his hand. And I know he’s a professional performer, but I really don’t think he was faking it!

On a more serious note, props to Jimmy for taking care of this…people, it’s super important to go to the dermatologist every year for a head-to-toe skin exam. I have a number of friends who’ve had skin cancer, but thankfully these annual exams caught it early and they’re all happy, healthy, and covered in SPF.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Thank you, Daily Om…

…for I was about to spin myself into a “being the best” (i.e., perfect) frenzy – the best writer, business owner, even parent (WTF – this egg freezing to-do-or-not-to-do has thrown me into a major existential crisis – but more on that in a separate entry to come…soon). But the truth is that, over the years, one of the greatest lessons I’ve learned is that ego and expectations often lead to disillusionment and disappointment. And by ego, I don’t mean behaving like a narcissistic egomaniacal j-hole; I mean doing things because they stroke your ego – like a job with a prestigious company or an over-the-top house or a title that looks good on paper, but none of these things really “make your soul sing.” Let me tell you – this lesson has hit me in the face like a wet pancake more times than I can count.

So let’s learn the lesson (again), shall we? To wit: these words of wisdom from our kumbaya friends at Daily Om (per Julie, who so graciously passed it along):

We often come into contact with the idea that our best isn’t good enough, as if this were actually possible. If you examine this notion, you will begin to see that it doesn’t make much sense. Your best is always good enough, because it comes from you, and you are always good enough. You may not be able to deliver someone else’s idea of the best, but the good news is that’s not your burden. You only need to fulfill your own potential, and as long as you remain true to that calling, and always do your best to fulfill your purpose, you don’t need to expect anything more from yourself.

It’s easy to get tangled up with the idea of trying to be the best—the best parent, the best employee, the best child, or best friend. If we try to be the best, we run the risk of short-circuiting our originality because we are striving to fit into someone else’s vision of success. In addition, if everyone is striving for the same outcome, we lose out on creativity, diversity, and visionary alternatives to the way things are done. On another note, there is nothing wrong with wanting to improve, but examining where this feeling comes from is important because wanting to be better than others is our ego coming into play.

Letting go of the tendency to hold ourselves up to other people’s standards, and letting go of the belief that we need to compete and win, doesn’t mean we don’t believe in doing the best job we can. We always strive to do our best, because when we do we create a life free of regret, knowing we have performed to the best of our ability. This allows us to feel great personal satisfaction in all of our efforts, regardless of how others perceive the outcome.

The gift of gab

Somewhere in the depths of my parents’ home, there are cassettes (yes, the audio version…hello, it was the 70s) of a teeny tiny me spouting opinions and telling stories about my life. It started when my mother shoved a microphone in my face at eight months old, trying to record the odd chicken clucking sounds that passed for my early attempts at speech. By age two, she was pestering me to sing “Jesus Loves Me” while I repeatedly protested, “No,” “No,” and “Huh-uh, no.” Not long after, my older cousins commandeered the cassette player and launched into a game of “Nikki Say This, Nikki Say That” – also a wish that was never granted, since all I ever uttered in reply was, “No,” “I don’t want to,” and, in conjunction with grabs at the mic, “I want to do it myself.” (Hmmm – independent spirit + need to perform/tell stories = probably the reason my mother found three-year-old me at a puppet show in the mall after I wandered away from her (I hated pointless shopping even then). And more to her horror, I was NOT in the audience with the other children, who were patiently awaiting the start of the show. I was on the stage.)

By age 4, I had the wild imagination of a budding writer – not to mention only child – and the adenoid-laden voice of Edith Ann. Put them together and you have a storyteller in the making. I’m fortunate that my parents recognized this and nurtured it; both the cassette player and microphone became near-constant companions of mine on family trips, as I holed up in the back seat of our Buick LeSabre and narrated my way through treks to Disneyland, Yellowstone, and the Badlands. While some parents of my fellow Gen-X’ers avoided the “Are we there yets?” with travel bingo and Slug Bug, mine were assured peace (and, let’s face it, road trip entertainment) by helping me channel my inner Garrison Keillor and setting me free to gab.

I’ve been asking my mom for years to find these recorded bits of hilariousness and, so far, she’s come up empty-handed. So when Julie sent me this today, I was grinning ear-to-ear. The only thing that could give me more deja-vu chills is if this little girl was propagating from a puppet stage in the middle of a mall.

(P.S. Yes, that photo above is me, circa 1981 – and FYI, that’s a scan of an actual, real-deal Polaroid, not some silly Hipstamatic iPhone app. I have no comment on the fuzzy purple slippers. Let it go.)

Narration of nature the way God intended

Ross Mathews meets Nat Geo.