Monday, December 28, 2015

Twenty fifteen - a pop culture and political summary

In neither order of importance or chronological order...
biggest events 2015

Love won. The Supreme Court ruled that states can not prevent same sex couples from marrying. 

Lots of refugees needed a safe home. Libya, Syria, and Iraq still have many looking for refuge. 

Evil manifested itself in too many events, worldwide and at home in the US. I'm referring specifically to the terror attacks, most notably in Paris and Tunsia.

Humanity triumphed each time that evil attempted to make the world forget the beautiful humanity that lives within every country and community. 

Greece almost had to exit the Eurozone. The instability was real. Many people canceled their vacations there.

People wouldn't stop talking about Kylie Jenner's lips. 

The FIFA scandal happened. The president stepped down. Honestly, most of this was missed on me other than that I never knew such huge corruption existed in soccer (or shall I say football). 

Amy Schumer had people talking about feminism. She was hilarious and poignant and got people thinking without even making them realize it.

Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez broke up, proving to the world that love isn't real (am I the only one who "shipped" them big time)?

Planned Parenthood was on constant attack by conservative politicians, potentially inspiring a terrorist attack. This was one of way too many shootings in the US throughout the year. 

There was a dress that made us question our sanity.

Zayn left One Direction, breaking hearts of teenage girls all over the world. And me. 

The NAACP president was revealed to have 2 white parents, despite "personally identifying" as black. She made us think about how fluid race can or can not be. 

Domestic terrorism is alive and real. The media continued to pretend that it isn't a thing.

Canada elected a very liberal and very attractive prime minister.

There were horrific natural disasters like the earthquake in Nepal and floods in China. It was also the hottest year on record and people still denied climate change. 

The Ashley Madison hack happened. Some people's lives were tragically ruined and even lost. Others were revealed for the hypocrites they actually are (looking at you Josh Duggar).

Too many unarmed, black men and boys were killed by police officers. The #blacklivesmatter movement arose, organizing to prevent more unnecessary deaths due to institutionalized racism.

Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart both left their political satire posts on Comedy Central. Stephen Colbert picked up the Late Night Show for David Letterman and does great. 

Bruce became Caitlyn. She brought transgender rights to the American dialogue. Bigots were upset that she won awards for her bravery.

Election season started and wouldn't stop. Running for the Republican nomination became very trendy (this potential nominee's kids were more excited about a turtle than their father's nomination). 

Donald Trump said a lot of racist things that no one took too seriously until he maintained his place as the Republican front runner for just about the entire primary season so far. 

Hillary Clinton begged people to see her as relatable and Bernie Sanders begged people to not see him as the crazy uncle who dances with the punch bowl on his head. Both generally kick ass.

Some people were nice enough to pretend they were running for the Democratic nomination to make it seem like a fair race. Looking at you Webb and Chafee.

Left shark became a part of all of us. 

Please note: I am an American and these are the events that were most poignant to me. Most definitely, there are domestic and international events that I missed. I created this list from memory because I wanted to record the things that left the largest impact on me. Again, there are many, many things that are not represented on this list. I recognize the fact that I have intense privilege in failing to recognize significant world events that impact the lives of many. Please enlighten me about things that I missed. Let's have a conversation. What was important to you in the news? What world, political, or pop culture events impacted you? 

Sunday, December 6, 2015

I want a job that I love as much as my hair stylist does

This post was inspired by my fabulous hair done by the Blowout Bar in Grandview, Ohio and the fact that I'm not necessarily looking forward to going to work tomorrow. God bless the talkative, empathetic guy giving me a blowout that made me feel like a million bucks and pray for me as I enter work tomorrow.

First, let's take a look at the magic hair stylists get to create on a daily basis. See that smile? The genuine laughter? It's because I feel freaking fantastic. Why do I feel fantastic? I had just finished an extraordinarily tasty margarita, I am seeing my boyfriend for the first time in a month, and because I feel like a million bucks with the magic the hairstylist was able to create on my head. Only I would get existential about my career over freakin' blowout.

Right now it is after 12:30 at night and I can't stop thinking about that hairstylist. We had great chats - from the Kardashians, to transgender issues, to bad drivers, to taking time off to find yourself. Mostly, though, he said that he loved his job. And I really believed him.

The thing is, I love my job too. But in a different way. When I say I love my job, I mean that I love my job in the way that normal people "love" their jobs. I think that most people "love" their jobs and if you say that, most people interpret it as the "love" that you give to a job and not genuine love.

When this man told me that he loved his job, he said it with conviction. It was so matter of fact. There was no trail off or vocal rise at the end of the sentence. It was a declarative statement. That was it. I told him that I took note of how matter of fact he was and that I thought it was amazing. The stylist that day was a perfect example, but this is something I have thought about before.

I see that same spark or imagine it in other people and professions, too. I think of a blogger that inspires me, Helene in Between, who just took the plunge to blogging full time. I think of a close friend who is a tap dancer in LA. I think of a friend who works at the zoo redesigning animal habitats to be better for the animals. I think of a friend who is a police officer that positively lights up every time he tells a story about work. I think of the podcast creators I listen to. The journalists that I read. The vloggers that I follow.

I really, really love the idea of blogging or podcasting. Yet here I am, almost 1:00 in the morning, writing about that on my loosely tended to blog and hardly even attempting to podcast. I'm committing to pay more attention to what I love to do and relentlessly pursue making it a career. Will you? Stay with me on my journey in the job I "love" looking for the job I love.

Have you ever had an experience like the one I described with my hair stylists? Do you have a job that you "love" or love? Let's talk about it.

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