Tuesday, April 16, 2013

taking notes

A few quotes I read to end my day on a good note: 

"It’s all like a dream. Everything is ecstasy, inside. We just don’t know it because of our thinking-minds. But in our true blissful essence of mind is known that everything is alright forever and forever and forever. Close your eyes, let your hands and nerve-ends drop, stop breathing for 3 seconds, listen to the silence inside the illusion of the world, and you will remember the lesson you forgot, which was taught in immense milky way soft cloud innumerable worlds long ago and not even at all. It is all one vast awakened thing. I call it the golden eternity. It is perfect. We were never really born, we will never really die. It has nothing to do with the imaginary idea of a personal self, other selves, many selves everywhere: Self is only an idea, a mortal idea. That which passes into everything is one thing. It’s a dream already ended. There’s nothing to be afraid of and nothing to be glad about. I know this from staring at mountains months on end. They never show any expression, they are like empty space. Do you think the emptiness of space will ever crumble away? Mountains will crumble, but the emptiness of space, which is the one universal essence of mind, the vast awakenerhood, empty and awake, will never crumble away because it was never born."

Jack Kerouac

‎”I have in my own heart a world that is deep, dark and rich. And you, in your heart, have a world that is also deep, dark and rich. So in that sense, even if I’m living in Tokyo and you are living in New York, Timbuktu or Reykjavik, Iceland, it means that we each hold inside ourselves something that is the same in nature or quality, regardless of place. And if we trace that quality to a much deeper place, we will discover that we live in a common world."
Haruki Murakami

"It is part of our culture to judge, to express opinions about anything and everything. It almost seems like it’s our duty to judge, as if we are not being discriminating if we don’t point out the flaws of something or someone. However, the truth is that pointing out flaws, criticizing, and having an opinion are the easiest things in the world to do. What’s difficult is being loving, accepting, and moving beyond our judgments, beliefs, and other conditioned ways of being. That is our challenge as human beings—to become more loving, not to complain, judge, and try to change others to suit our preferences. Loving is a matter of moving beyond our personal preferences and judgments enough to let love flow to another, enough to allow ourselves to see another’s beauty, not the flaws." 

Monday, April 15, 2013

make misteaks

“I want to say something about bad writing. I’m proud of my bad writing. Everyone is so intelligent lately, and stylish. Fucking great. I am proud of Philip Guston’s bad painting, I am proud of Baudelaire’s mamma’s boy goo goo misery. Sometimes the lurid or shitty means having a heart, which’s something you have to try to have. Excellence nowadays is too general and available to be worth prizing: I am interested in people who have to find strange and horrible ways to just get from point A to point B.”

I've felt this way for a really long time now. Not just about writing, or art, but about everything. I feel like it's good to be proud of your mistakes. Mistakes in your art and mistakes in your life. Not to say all "bad" art or anything else like that are necessarily mistakes. Besides, no one masters something the first time they do it. You kind of have to fuck up to get better at whatever it is that you're doing. 

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Old friend

So, I've known Josh since I was about 12-13 years old. We basically have seen each other grow up in so many ways since then, and I'm just overall really proud of where he is right now in life. We've both been through a lot together, and I'm really glad he's still a really close friend of mine. It feels good to have someone there for you as solely a friend who knows you so well, is respectful, and is just overall inspirational as a person. He's really into health and fitness now, among other things, and I think that's awesome. He's super passionate about what he does and the way he lives his life, and he genuinely wants to help people do that for themselves as well. 

For some reason I can't seem to upload the video directly, but check out his first video here

99% pure

"The idea that girls are supposed to stay “pure” is a trap designed to keep you from getting out there and exploring the world—because, you’re told, it will only rough you up, dirty up your soul, sully you, make you less. But learning is not a trap. It means that you’re standing in front of failure and embarrassment and disappointment—and joy, and surprise, and all the good things that come with experience—and you’re ready for them. That you’re not afraid to explore. It means you’re ready to grow up, even when that process scares you. I can’t think of anything braver, stronger, or more badass than that." 
Sady from RookieMag

This idea of 'purity' in women is pretty juvenile. Not only by the men in our society, but it has trickled down to the women as well. I can't even count how many times I have heard in the hallways of both my high school and college, and on the street, a random girl saying something along the lines of "yeah, she's fucked like 20 guys already. what a slut." It's ridiculous to think that men came up with this idea in their head that women are supposed to be these inexperienced humans (compared to them) in order to be desirable, and it's even more ridiculous to think that now women think that about each other as well. I feel badly about this because 1) Why are men (and women) so concerned with what is going on in each other's lives (particularly in their sexual lives) to that degree? 2) If inexperience is considered pure, then in actuality shouldn't we all be considered pure in different aspects? Not everyone has experienced everything there is to experience as a living human being on planet earth, and this obviously is the case throughout your entire existence (and beyond depending on what you believe in), so why are only certain experiences more closely associated with the word "pure" or "innocent" than others in our society? 

I don't really know where I'm going with this, but these are just a few things I've been thinking lately.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Lily Allen

Something I wrote about Lily a while back that I still feel strongly about:

I loved how Lily expressed herself through her music while she was growing up. She got signed when she was only 16, and she openly expresses not only through her music but in her interviews that she was, you know, going through extremely lost and hard times without embarrassment at all. I love how direct her lyrics are sometimes to her life experiences, she literally invites her fans in on her life and I think that’s a really hard thing to do when you’re an artist because of all the judgment you may face along the way. Granted, when she was growing up she was a bit of a party animal and she made some direct judgements at other artists and their work, however she expresses how much she has learned from that, again very openly and admittedly throughout her career. She is a wonderful expression of how young women ought to not be afraid of who they are while growing up. (Young) Women especially are all evidently faced with being judged on so many levels: about sex, about appearance, about drugs, about politics, about relationships, about education, the list goes on and on. I feel like Lily gives such a raw and real representation of someone who went through all of these things first hand: she went through sleeping around when she was younger, she went through the struggle of becoming possessed by material objects, she went through good and bad relationships, and she’s not afraid to express these things. She’s not afraid to show anger when shes angry, or sadness when shes sad, or happiness when she’s happy. She’s literally not scared to say “Yeah when I was 15 I held out flyers in a bikini on the street, it was bad,” but she also doesn't turn it into a sob story where she claims be a victim of her choices, and that I respect so much. Yeah, she’s not some virgin saint but she doesn’t really care, because in the end she still keeps a very level-headed, non-judgmental, and humble outlook on life and that’s great. She can still go in front of the camera looking great and confidently talk about her sex life, for instance, or what shes wearing, but not be entirely consumed by these things.

I also love how in her songs she sometimes tackles such serious topics like politics or what have you but then in the background you hear like these cheerful beats to create that sense of irony and contradiction.

Monday, March 4, 2013

french music and sailor moon

OK so this is probably really cheesy but my love for french music has rekindled this weekend on a road trip I took with my friends. My step-dad has this corny french CD (among many other corny European CDs) but I actually REALLY like it. I stole it from him back when I was a freshmen/sophomore in high school and listened to it every morning while getting ready for school, until he decided to take it back, and I haven't been able to find it or any of the songs online since, until I found it in his car this passed weekend. My friend Michelle was laughing at me and said if I heard the lyrics in English, I probably wouldn't like the songs as much. That might be true, but, in the mean time, I can't deny how cool these songs sound in french. I also probably really like them because I grew up to my mom throwing parties to this kind of music and her teaching me how to dance to it. The videos I found on youtube are really low budget and extremely bizarre, but some of the best things are, right?

My favorite on the CD is Milord by In-Grid
Non Randez Vous by Natasha St-Pier

In Tango by In-Grid is another one I like. Here's the original song:
THEN I found this cool remix with some Sailor Moon graphics. I'm not a huge fan of the Benassi remix, but I love Sailor Moon and this song so I thought it was still pretty cool. 
Taka Taka by Joe Dassin:
Tu Es Foutu by In-Grid

commonalities part 2

So, like I said in an earlier post, I've been thinking a lot about people's interests and what some of us may or may not have in common, and a few quotes popped into my head about the subject. I read an article on RookieMag a while back called What's Mine is Mine and something Tavi said in it really stuck out in my mind: 

 "I think one reason people of all ages get so territorial is that when they first were interested in more obscure things, they didn’t yet know anyone else who liked them, and it became kind of isolating. And then when they finally DO find other people who like the stuff they do, they want to invalidate those people’s reasons for liking it and claim that it’s not as deep or real. I realized that people aren’t just products of their tastes. We saw the same movie, but we each focused on different parts, and gave the same parts different meanings, etc. I have some friends who like stuff I hate, and I have met people I hated who had my exact same taste. I’d like to believe this stuff really matters—probably because so much of my life is just being obsessed with stuff—but in the end, people see what they want to see and hear what they want to hear, so it all matters way less than we think." 

This quote from 500 Days of Summer also popped into my head: 

"Just because she likes the same bizzaro crap you do doesn't mean she's your soul mate."

Monday, February 25, 2013

where I've been drawing inspiration from lately

Taken from Rookie, Colossal, and Fashiontoast

sudden fascination with Denmark

My curiosity for Denmark is skyrocketing right now. A few weeks ago I watched the documentary Happy and I found out one of the happiest places on earth is, statistically, Denmark. If not thee happiest place. Coincidentally, I found out from a customer at my job that my name (Dagmara) is actually Danish! And apparently it means sunrise or sunshine? I don't know how true that last part is, but I was super happy to find out my name comes from such a cool place. Tonight I also found out that in the Museum of Modern Art in Aalborg, Denmark, they have room in which you can swing covered in a thousand reflections of yourself! It's called The Phoenix is Closer Than it Appears. Watch these videos to understand better:

Okay seriously I am too excited right now, but HOW cool is this?! Visiting Denmark is without a doubt a must for me.

Saturday, February 23, 2013


Maybe it’s just me, but lately I’ve been feeling like much of what I have in common with people matters less than everyone makes it seem. Yeah, it’s nice to talk about things that you both know about that you both like, but isn’t it more intriguing to talk about things you don’t know about with each other? To not only introduce each other to new concepts and ideas, or even little things such as songs and t.v shows, but to explore entirely new (to the both of you) things together? I want to meet people I have absolutely nothing in common with, because I can learn the absolute most from them. 

Sitting here for 10 mins and I still don't have a title

I can't believe I'm doing this again. HI. I'm blogging again. For the first time in ages. I guess I fell off the map there for a while. Originally, when I started this blog I was very excited about making it a (somewhat) personal style blog. I guess since then I've realized personal style blogging isn't really my thing because I have too many thoughts up in this noggin to not write about them on the world wide and very public web. (I feel sorry for the secret government agent that has to track my internet history). So I guess in the midst of trying to figure out where I stand as a blobber (blogger) (thanks Tavi), as a student, as a writer, and as a human (lol unfortunately I'm serious), not blogging for a really long time seemed reasonable. But alas! Here I am again. 

I had a falling out with fashion, ironically. I still love it in many ways. But I guess the materialistic aspect, my own need to find something more personally meaningful, and the fact that I started getting interested in other things like interior design overwhelmed and discouraged me at the same time from doing anything fashion related for a while. Even the word FASHION itself can be hard to take serious sometimes. Or maybe I've just said it too many times throughout my existence thus far? I don't know. 

Anyway, there are so many things like quotes I hear in class to random things I make that I kind of want to organize in one place, and right now this blog seems like the best outlet.

I'm taking a sustainability course in school right now and last week we had an amazing guest speaker. Her name is Amy DuFault and she writes for Ecosalon.com. This woman is incredible! She is so dedicated to making the world a more sustainable place, it's ridiculously inspiring. The things you can learn about outsourced workers and how they're being treated, to how your food is being treated on farms, to global warming, to plastic bags, in one sitting with her is mind blowing. Almost literally. Some of her articles on the site under the "behind the label" section are really interesting, they take known companies like Chipotle and expose both the good and the bad about how they're handling their products, and how it effects you personally. 

Here's a quote I wrote down of hers from class. I can't say it's word for word, it's hard to write down every single word someone is saying, but more or less this is the message she was trying to get across about becoming more sustainable (but I also thought it was just good general advice): 

"Don't go nuts, don't shame people. You're not a part of a cult. Change starts with you. We're all hypocrites in some ways. I think it's smart to be transparent about what you're doing. You're going to make mistakes and if people want to call you out on them, let them. You've got to be happy about the little victories, you know? You're not going to be a magician and change minds over night." 

This kind of stuff can get overwhelming when you get into the real specifics of the factory workers over in China for example, but everyone should really touch base on this, I think. Doing little things like not taking plastic bags at the grocery store or recycling properly sounds silly but really does make a change in the long run. And it really is interesting to learn about how things like recycling connects to the environment, which connects to the climate, which connects to animals, etc. 

Amy's being as a whole is just so inspiring. She tries to dedicate every aspect of her life to this sustainable lifestyle because she believes it makes the world a better place, and I think that's amazing. 

And yes, I do still skip breakfast.