How frustrating.

Before I came to college, before I became interested in social justice and the plight of people who had so little and needed so much compassion, I did have some soft spots. I was not completely heartless.
There were specifically two types of people that I could not stand to see made fun of or intolerated in any way, and these were the elderly and immigrants. At the time I never felt like there was necessarily anything I wanted to do to help alleviate these prejudices. I just knew that it made me feel all squirmy and painful inside when I saw acts of injustice directed at the displaced or the elderly.
So, college came and went and I saw my heart open to scores of others affected by injustice. But today, I saw two instances that brought me right back to times of utter anger and squirminess inside my being.
I was at the bank and an old man at the teller right next to me was telling the bank employee that he had $8 in his savings account and he needed $5 to take out in order to have dinner. He said that his social security would come in tomorrow, but until then, he was living quite meagerly. It absolutely broke my heart. I felt irrepressible anger at the way our country treats the elderly. It seemed so unfair and unjust.
Then while at work, I read an article about a town in Mississippi that decided to take immigration matters into its own hands. Mississippi passed a law with harsh penalties for companies tha knowingly employ undocumented workers (Business Week). This law is going beyond treating immigrants without dignity, it is going as low as firing workers who are Latino because they might be undocumented. It's just so maddening, this whole immigration fight. It is, in its essence, wholly unjust and undignified. This is a nation of immigrants, it always will be.
It's utter bullshit to treat either of these groups with anything less than the dignity they deserve.


A great surprise.

Today, I was fiddling with my Moleskine journal/calendar during a meeting, and out of the very back pocket fell a folded-up sheet of paper with this typed on it:
"I hope you come to find that which gives life a deep meaning for you. Something worth living for—maybe even worth dying for—something that energizes you, enthuses you, enables you to keep moving ahead. I can't tell you what it might be—that's for you to find, to choose, to love." -Maryknoll Sister Ita Ford
I have NO idea where that piece of paper came from. But it arrived at a rather serendipitous moment in my life, that's all I know.
Quite a beautiful touch to my day :)


Wine. Fries. Ice cream. Regret.

Dinner with my Lana at Truxtons!


Great resource

Opposing Views is a website that helps you uncover all sides of the issues you care about most. Experts go head-to-head on real-life concerns, debating news and events, addressing the questions that keep you up at night.


An odd exchange

Today as I was walking to work, I saw the oddest exchange. A homeless woman (older, overweight) was pushing a cart full of her belongings (and a chihuahua) across the street. Crossing right behind her was a blind woman. A book dropped out of the homeless woman's cart. She looked behind her and asked the blind woman to pick it up. The blind woman responded, "I can't pick it up, I don't know where it is." The homeless woman replied, "Well, I can't bend over to pick it up." This continued for a good 30 seconds until I came over to pick the book up and hand it over. After a quick thank you, bickering continued between the two! Still out in the middle of the crosswalk! "I wouldn't have been able to bend down to pick it up!" "Well, how could I pick it up?!"

I walked away thinking how sad it is ... our unwillingness to help others. I'm blaming neither woman, because if the blind woman had dropped something, I'm sure the homeless woman wouldn't have been able to pick it up for her either.

We all have roadblocks they hinder us from reaching out to others. For some, it's as debilitating as blindness. For others, it's a fear of the unknown, the poor, the helpless that keeps them from volunteering. Or it could be as simple as a fear of intimacy preventing one person from reaching in past another's "wall" to lend a hand. Well, come on, people. It's time to get intimate with your fellow humans :)



A typographic journey through life.

Found on an awesome design related blog called Uppercase.

This is the WORST thing that could have ever happened to me.

The place Lana and I are moving into DOES NOT ALLOW PETS.
I seriously had to get up from my desk at work when I found this out, and take a walk around the neighborhood to calm down because I was pouting with such ferocity.
All I wanted was a little yellow kitten.


The weekend thus far.

Let's see, Thursday was utter chaos and craziness (see below entry).
Friday night, Ally and I were supposed to go see Tyrone Wells at the Hotel Cafe (a venue I have wanted to go to FOREVER) but because of the previous night's shenanigans, (unbloggable) we realized we were way too tired. So we grabbed a delicious dinner at Le Pain quotidien, a great French cafe in Santa Monica and pretended to have a business meeting there in order to use their wireless. In reality, we would just say "global business venture" whenever to waiter came to sound legit.
We spent the rest of the night watching Batman Begins, with Ally constantly posing the question, "Wait...so tell me again why he's a bat."
Saturday was spent lazing around and napping between Bravo marathons of the amazing, amazing show OC Housewives.

Then Ally and I met up with a great bunch of people to see Clockwork Orange at Hollywood Forever. Ally was miserable with a gnarly head cold and something I ate threw me off, so we left a little before the film ended and had to skip out on Santa Monica's GLOW festival...which I later heard was utterly underwhelming. Too bad, it had such potential.

Sunday morning was the farmers market in Santa Monica with Ally and Erik, lunch at good old Cafe Milan, and now I sit at Tanner's coffee in Playa blogging and learning Spanish on an AMAZING website called livemocha.com. I'm also watching a father and son sitting at the same table, video chatting each other. Precious.
And tonight is Feist at Hollywood Bowl, with lots of fresh fruits from the farmers market...as well as a steamed artichoke. Holla!

Ally and Bern make poor decisions.

The night started out innocently enough with Tchaikovsky at the Hollywood Bowl...
...then we met these guys...
...and we ended up in the back of a police car.


A little taste

Sorry this isn't the greatest thing you will ever see.
1. I'm no experienced video editor.
2. The compression quality sucks balls.
3. And for some reason, there's like an extra 4 minutes of nothingness at the end. Go figure.
But it should give you a good idea of our road trip :)


I hate the bus: Part 1

Too many people talk to me on the bus. It's official: I'm wearing a faux wedding ring to ward off the gentlemen and burying my nose in a book to further dissuade people from talking to me, period.
Trust me, I'm not trying to brag. The only guys who talk to me are super creepy 50-somethings who complain about their ex-wives. No bus hotties as of yet.


What a wonderful idea for a gift!

Click here to see.

I love the bus: Part 3

I was pretty sleepy when I got on the bus this morning. And I was reading through Jeffrey Sachs' "The End of Poverty," a brilliant but rather textbook-like theory on economics. Needless to say, I was having trouble keeping my eyes open. Well, all of a sudden, 10 screaming 4 year-olds all in matching tye-dye shirts clamored onto the bus with three emotionally-drained teachers following behind them (it was not even 10am).

There were cries of "Sit with me, sit with me!" from small bodies seemingly overwhelmed by backpacks larger than their tiny beings.

It was a good start to the day :)


And, we're off.

Ally and I will be leaving bright and early Friday morning to drive out to Sedona, Arizona for our old boss/current friend Joanne's wedding. I'm doing the photography! I'll post some of the pictures next week, as well as the invitations I designed for them!
Grand canyon, grand adventures...here we come.

Something is wrong with the world when...

a mustache on a stick costs $40.

(However, Paisley, I can see you rocking this with a monacle)


What I do at work

I've made a big decision, everybody.

After getting inspired by my coworker Sloane (who collects all things owl-related) and this website, I decided I wanted/needed to start collecting something.

After much thought and deliberation (some of the rejected ideas were: dachsunds, mermaids and vintage scarves) I settled upon STARFISH.

I'm starting with these cards from Earmark's Etsy shop: