Farewell Letter

To lovers of literature: this letter is incredible. I don’t sleep these days either. Too nervous, or scared – don’t want to miss anything.

Farewell Letter

by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

For reasons of health, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Colombia’s illustrious Nobel Laureate for literature, has declared his retirement from public life. He has terminal cancer and sends this letter of farewell to friends and lovers of literature.

If God, for a second, forgot what I have become and granted me a little bit more of life, I would use it to the best of my ability.

I wouldn’t, possibly, say everything that is in my mind, but I would be more thoughtful l of all I say.

I would give merit to things not for what they are worth, but for what they mean to express.

I would sleep little, I would dream more, because I know that for every minute that we close our eyes, we waste 60 seconds of light.

I would walk while others stop; I would remain awake while others sleep.

If God would give me a little bit more of life, I would dress in a simple manner, I would place myself in front of the sun, leaving not only my body, but my soul naked at its mercy.

To all men, I would say how mistaken they are when they think that they stop falling in love when they grow old, without knowing that they grow old when they stop falling in love.

I would give wings to children, but I would leave it to them to learn how to fly by themselves.

To old people I would say that death doesn’t arrive when they grow old, but with forgetfulness.

I have learned so much with you all, I have learned that everybody wants to live on top of the mountain, without knowing that true happiness is obtained in the journey taken & the form used to reach the top of the hill.

I have learned that when a newborn baby holds, with its little hand, his father’s finger, it has trapped him for the rest of his life.

I have learned that a man has the right and obligation to look down at another man, only when that man needs help to get up from the ground.

Say always what you feel, not what you think. If I knew that today is the last time that that I am going to see you asleep, I would hug you with all my strength and I would pray to the Lord to let me be the guardian angel of your soul.

There is always tomorrow, and life gives us another opportunity to do things right, but in case I am wrong, and today is all that is left to me, I would love to tell you that I will never forget you.

Tomorrow is never guaranteed to anyone, young or old. Today could be the last time to see your loved ones, which is why you mustn’t wait; do it today, in case tomorrow never arrives. I am sure you will be sorry you wasted the opportunity today to give a smile, a hug, a kiss, and that you were too busy to grant them their last wish.

Keep your loved ones near you; tell them in their ears and to their faces how much you need them and love them. Love them and treat them well; take your time to tell them “I am sorry,” “forgive me, “please,” “thank you,” and all those loving words you know.

Nobody will know you for your secret thoughts. Ask the Lord for wisdom and strength to express them.

Show your friends how important they are to you.

Send this letter to those you love. If you don’t do it today…tomorrow will be like yesterday, and if you never do it, it doesn’t matter either, the moment to do it is now.

For you, with much love,

Your Friend,
Gabriel Garcia Marquez

 

Taking on Cosmo: My Top 10 List

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Perhaps this is what Carrie Bradshaw from Sex & the City would have written to young women, has she not been a total moron.

For anyone who is besides themselves with excitement reading about the newest ploys for attention, unimaginative sex tricks, or ways to feel like shit about yourself (mmm sweet masochism), Cosmo enters the newsstands to save the day. Promising to provide advice for the fun and fearless city girl, I don’t know one California girlfriend who actually reads this trash. This magazine is mostly read by bored suburban housewives and spazztic teenagers trying to figure out what the hell to do on prom night (It does what? It goes where?) Fact. We have all been there…sweet innocence.

As I now find myself with ample reading time while on a health time-out, paroozed over to the magazine I so love to hate today to see what assanine advice they had for young American women as of late.

Just imagine my glee (was purring with excitement) finding a list of ways to get people to like you (a very poor spin on the business book “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie) in which the staff author lists off ways to fake authenticity with a smile, fake genuine interest in other human beings (because who actually gives a shit, right?), promotes an intensely scary vibe of co-dependency and desperation (no thanks), and encourages us to fake whatever else we have to fake (if you get my drift) in order to get our way – three cheers for sexual frustration, Cosmo. Right? Her advice is not only bad, but also highly destructive, as it leaves women thinking they have to pretend to be needy mops of people in order to get the world’s approval. Also, let us please note that any dude who would want you to behave in this manner is one who can kindly go fuck himself. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

I call BS.

After reading this gem of an “article” I decided to make a list of my own – “10 Ways to Actually Like Yourself – And Not Feel Guilty About It” – because guess what, ladies (cue dramatic pause…) when you are cool with yourself, the world takes notice and opportunities of allll types come your way in spades. Not rocket science, people, yet many women are still so wildly insecure. No thanks to the “help” they are being force-fed by vapid trash rags like Cosmo.

10 Ways to Actually Like Yourself – And Not Feel Guilty About It

1.) Take care of yourself and the people in your life - and do it well.

2.) Take a genuine interest in people and make it universal - the janitor’s story is oftentimes far more interesting than the EVP’s. Take note of everyone – and investigate deeply.

3.) Laugh at yourself – a lot. Find myself constantly drawn to women who can laugh at themselves while continuing to do cool shit. And let’s be honest, serious people are the height of boring. Being a playful pup is far more fun :). I live to play.

4.) Be Curious. You know how people say that intelligence is sexy? Meh – am seldom impressed by a high IQ. Curiosity is, in fact, the height of hot. Being turned on to the entire world is dazzingly hot. I’m talking the insatiable desire to learn about anything and everything around you. This is the one trait that all of my good friends share anywhere in the world, as well as anyone I’ve ever dated. So go forth and find people with high intellectual curiosity (note: not necessarily high intellect, just a willingness to let their minds fly in wild places) and revel in them, swim in them, cherish them. They are special, so treat them as such.

5.) Be Kind. That worn-out stereotype of the conniving mean girl winning the day is bullshit, my friends. Kind people who are genuine get their way FAR more often – of this I am certain. So work with honey, my little bumblebees. Sprinkle a little charm and kindness into your requests and people will do whatever you ask – not because you are a manipulative sleaze (heyooo Cosmo) but because they actually like you and want to help you. And you will show reciprocity and trust me, that will feel good.  And you will express gratitude generously and that will feel even better.

6.) Make mistakes – freely. The perfection trap is something that paralyzes millions of ambitious over-achievers. Break free and just start – I did this year and it was a cluster, but a highly liberating one. You are far from perfect – but you can keep striving.  That type of relentless effort no one can take away from you, so don’t stop.

7.) Be fiercely loyal. You can have a million and one friends (I try, collecting people who excite me like a squirrel collects nuts in winter), but if you lack loyalty, you will inevitably end up unfulfilled in those friendships. Don’t be afraid to stand up for the people who really matter (male or female) when you know that they are in the right. DON’T be afraid to get mamma bear protective when a friend is in trouble. I try to be a sweet person, but if you fuck with my friends, I will take you out…immediately. Expect close friends to have my back at the speed of light as well, and accept nothing less.

8.) Be adventurous. Who wants to play with someone who is monotonous in every aspect of life?! Lame. Being adventurous doesn’t necessarily mean flinging yourself from planes (although that IS super fun – adrenaline junkies unite :) ) but spreads to every part of your life: from jobs to travel to relationships to your daily breakfast choices – why not do something unexpected and maybe surprise yourself in the process? Find people who will push you to push yourself – then amazing things will happen. Once an adventurous fire has been lit within your heart, it will be very difficult to ever put it out.

9.) Be good to your family. They may be a lot to handle, and perhaps drive you nuts during the holidays, but they gave you life so show a bit of respect. This is an absolute must and a deal breaker on every account.

10.) Realize how fucking cool you are and shut the rest of the world out if they don’t agree. Hard stop.

So wish that more of my female friends saw themselves as I see them: authentically fun, fearless, beautiful, and capable of anything they set their minds to.

Remember, dearest reader: You are no shrinking violet, you are no damsel in distress (although our world makes it far too tempting to play that role and get away with it, I know), you are no helpless, emo mouse, so own your awesome and get on with a life that counts. Oh, and stop reading Cosmo – it is utterly useless.

The Greatest Adoration

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“Still, despite all this, traveling is the great true love of my life. I have always felt, ever since I was sixteen years old and first went to Russia with my saved-up babysitting money, that to travel is worth any cost or sacrifice. I am loyal and constant in my love for travel, as I have not always been loyal and constant in my other loves. I feel about travel the way a happy new mother feels about her impossible, colicky, restless, newborn baby–I just don’t care what it puts me through. Because I adore it. Because it’s mine. Because it looks exactly like me. It can barf all over me if it wants to–I just don’t care.” 
― Liz Gilbert

Mammoth 2K13

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Who doesn’t love a bit of mischief?

Spencer Whiting, Grey McCalla, and Brandon Davis put Mammoth park to work over the weekend.

But Agnes, what is this minx of a track they used in this ridiculous GoPro film? Ah yes, got you covered :) Bliss out palooza with Flume:

The Laughing Heart

There may not be much light, but it beats the darkness. This poem speaks to my every atom of being.

your life is your life
don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.
be on the watch.
there are ways out.
there is a light somewhere.
it may not be much light but
it beats the darkness.
be on the watch.
the gods will offer you chances.
know them.
take them.
you can’t beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.
your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvelous
the gods wait to delight
in you.

~Charles Bukowski

Into the Wild

Take the most wanderlustly person you have ever met…

Screen Shot 2014-01-17 at 10.38.07 PM“I’d like to repeat the advice that I gave you before, in that I think you really should make a radical change in your lifestyle and begin to boldly do things which you may previously never have thought of doing, or been too hesitant to attempt. So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservatism, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more damaging to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have a changing horizon, for your days to have a new and different setting sun.

If you want to get more out of life, Ron, you must lose your inclination for monotonous security.

Once you become accustomed to such a life you will see its full meaning and its incredible beauty. And so, Ron, in short, get out of Salton City and hit the Road. I guarantee you will be very glad you did. But I fear that you will ignore my advice. You think that I am stubborn, but you are even more stubborn than me. You had a wonderful chance on your drive back to see one of the greatest sights on earth, the Grand Canyon, something every American should see at least once in his life. But for some reason incomprehensible to me you wanted nothing but to bolt for home as quickly as possible, right back to the same situation which you see day after day after day. I fear you will follow this same inclination in the future and thus fail to discover all the wonderful things that God has placed around us to discover.

Don’t settle. Don’t sit in one place. Make your days new horizons. You are still going to live a long time, Ron, and it would be a shame if you did not take the opportunity to revolutionize your life and move into an entirely new realm of experience.

You are wrong if you think Joy emanates only or principally from human relationships. God has placed it all around us. It is in everything and anything we might experience. We just have to have the courage to turn against our habitual lifestyle and engage in unconventional living.

My point is that you do not need me or anyone else around to bring this new kind of light in your life. It is simply waiting out there for you to grasp it, and all you have to do is reach for it. The only person you are fighting is yourself and your stubbornness to engage in new circumstances.”  ~Jon Krakauer

Kris Carr – An Incredible Journey

“Cancer taught me how to listen to my brilliant inner guide, brought me back to nature (my church), the garden and kitchen (my pharmacies), and connected me more deeply with the people and animals who set my heart ablaze.” ~ohhh spirit sister

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In 2003, 31-year-old NYC photographer Kris Carr was diagnosed with a rare and incurable cancer. Weeks later she began filming her story. Taking a seemingly tragic situation and turning it into creative expression, Kris shared her story of survival with courage, strength, and lots of humor.

Kris was diagnosed with cancer just two years older than me, and even with a doomsday terminal diagnosis, continued to explore alternative routes to wellness. Her persistence and passion started a plant-based health movement in the US and I continue to be inspired by reading her personal story: http://kriscarr.com/about/about-kris/. 10 years post diagnosis, Kris encourages us all to take control of our lives and the destiny of our health.

*Let us also note that Kris is now 42-years-old, ALIVE, super successful, fully active and absolutely beautiful (both inside and out).

Why do two people with the same diagnosis have such drastically different outcomes? One lives, the other dies. There is so much more to each healing story than the medical treatment we receive. This film hit home for a million different reasons today, but the moral of this story is: we control our outcomes, no matter what the doctors say.

Interested in learning more about some of the lifestyle changes Kris made during her cancer battle? Here is a sneak peek of the making of a staple in the plant-based diet. Motherflipping kale shakes, ya’ll. All day long. I’m slowly turning into a leafy green :)

Check out some more smoothie recipes from Kris and drink up: http://kriscarr.com/recipes/juices-smoothies/

The Sound of Taste

Sweet find: this wonderful audio visual installation in association with Schwartz Flavour shots.

What does flavor look like? What does it sound like? These are the questions that inspired herb and spice experts, Schwartz, to create what they describe as ‘Sonic Flavourscape’ – a delicately sublime way to present a new range of herb and spice blends.

Parametric Expression

Behold a visual study of quantified emotion.

In Parametric Expression, by artist Mike Pelletier,  computer models simply repeat common facial expressions over and over again. Seems harmless enough, right? Or is it? 

This eerie short is showcased in collaboration with Subbacultcha! x Pllant / Marieke van Helden and is sure to make you pause and think for a second.

Music: “I Was Deep in a Dream and I Didn’t Know It”