Are You Sad At the State of the World These Days?

I’m sure I’m not alone these days…I mean in my thinking.

Monsanto is getting away with uber poisons that could potentially kill off all of the independant farmers along with their non-GMO crops, all in the name of greed (click here if you feel the need to act on this).

Influencer to Alys Myers Studio

Architectural Rendering of Pat Falco’s “Luxury Waters” condo tower, 2017 (Pat Falco)

Elephant’s are getting closer to extinction everyday (click here, ditto).

Rascism seems to be so institutionalized that sometimes even people of color can’t see it (see WBUR article here).

And affordable housing is beyond most people’s reach. Well, artist Pat Falcois smartly satirizing this topic at Open Gallery, near South Station (in Boston folks, sorry if that’s not near – really cool piece though- check it out), through November 1st, with Luxury Waters: Sales Office that shows the reality, that Boston is a luxury utopia that no one can afford. A framed poster at the entrance reads “Tower above the city with the largest income inequality gap in the country. Pre-selling fall 2017.” Sadly, it’s true (the statement, not the pre-sell :).

Influencer to Alys Myers Studio

Pat Falco, Boston Campaign Headquarters (detail), 2016 (Pat Falco)

Falco previously did an installation in an empty Faneuil Hall store front, called Boston Campaign Headquarters, where he set up a fake campaign facade with the front door reading “Land of the free and 200 million other people”. Great stuff.

See, there are a cohort of us (large, I hope) out there trying to fight for this place to be better. If enough of us join in, we can make a dent. Join us or support us or raise us up!

Lastly, the Indiegogo campaign is over for All The Pardons app. You will either be overjoyed, sad you missed it, or you’re now thinking, “What’s she on about?”. None-the-less, I am happy to be moving back to the production side of the job. The pages are almost done! Yay! Happy weekend everybody!

Blade Runner 2049…Dystopia Preventable with All The Pardons app?

Ok, I know this is bordering on a trend (film tie in to topic) but, really, I’m just going with the flow.download

Last weekend I saw the new Blade Runner 2049. Though it is very depressing in so many ways, it’s a fabulous movie and really relates back to my themes in a myriad of directions.

So, without spoiling all over the place, I will talk in as many generalities as I can.

I don’t think it’s going too far to make clear that the film takes place in the future and is dystopian. Much of the woes of this time period are attached to technology and how it’s run our lives to the point of the extinction of the human race. Most of society is run by replicants who try to be as human as possible with the benefits of having super human strength and being able to heal themselves extremely rapidly.

So, the results of human traits being so valued in what appears to be extinction is: loneliness still exists, wanting/needing/hoping to be special in some way, desire for intimacy and ultimately reproduction in a traditional way. This film serves perfectly as examples of what I’m addressing in my app All The Pardons. We all long for intimacy, and technology is threatening our access to intimacy these days. Little things like being made to feel important, valued and respected – which aren’t really little things at all – are being taken away from us as we make the little square electronic thing the most important object in our lives. We all know how great it feels to have someone’s undivided attention and for someone to make us feel special and important….so, all we have to do is remember that we all feel that way and that it also makes us feel good to be on the other end of it. Do something for someone today (no strings attached) and remember how good it makes us feel too.

And….this is the last day to contribute to my Indiegogo campaign! Please consider donating to the completion of the app. Building the app is a lot of work but I’m hoping to make a little corner of life a lot better, which is worth it (click on the image below).

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From a Marshall to an App?

This week I saw a sneak preview of Marshall, a film about the famous supreme court justice, Thurgood Marshall. Up front, I

Marshall, the movie

Marshall, the movie

highly recommend it (I haven’t done a movie review in a while, have I?), but more than that, it’s a very important film. This is true not just because Thurgood Marshall is a vitally important figure in American history, but because white America knows so little about him.

Marshall didn’t just have to be better than the other attorneys he encountered, he had to think rings around them, and he did. His IQ was on an equal level as his EQ (emotional quotient). He met, scanned, read and targeted a Jewish lawyer in the town he arrived in to defend a black man charged with raping a white woman. This was during the second World War and he knew that this was a man who had worries overseas (the Holocaust), the same worries my family had, and because of these worries he knew that this man would not be able to turn away from a clear cut case of prejudice in the end, besides we all know how good it feels to actually help someone (we do, don’t we?).

So, I bring this up because the film rattled some old feelings in me and made me think of my motivations to do the work that I do. The themes in this film resonate thoroughly with the issues that motivate me and so I have felt a strong connection to it that has grown stronger as the week has progressed.

This naturally leads to my motivations as the creator of Social Acupuncture/Social Meditation, and the first two projects under that heading, All The Bandages and All The Pardons. My father, who passed away a year ago August, was a Holocaust survivor and I imagine most of the survivors are nearing the end of their lives at this point in time. I am, and he would have been, terrified by what’s going on in the world right now. I feel passionately that with a little slowness of pace, opening of ears and eyes and patience with one another – going back to old fashioned manners – that we can get a lot more accomplished.

So, nearing the end of my plug cycle, but I need your help and I’m asking for it as plainly as I can, with so much gratitude for anything you can do. Please consider pledging to my Indiegogo campaign by clicking on the button below. It will help support my creation of All The Pardons, mentioned above, which is an app that will aide people in being kinder to one another. $1 is fine, if that is all you can spare. In fact, that’s awesome! I appreciate you, all of you, even if you can’t donate anything. A plug by you on social media is also appreciated though!

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Are You Finding People To Be Generally Angry?

So…here is my motivation….

All us little veggies getting along harmoniously.

All us little veggies getting along harmoniously.

If you follow any of my social media feeds, you may be wondering why I’m talking so much about etiquette and kindness and presence/thoughtfulness. Well, don’t you think we’re lacking in these areas at the moment as humans? I mean, some of us are better at it than others but still, I feel my humanity slipping away along with everyone else. I want to save it and help you save yours too. I’m allowed to try to do that, right? Try being the key word….

So, that is what All The Pardons app is about and why I’m working so hard to launch it into the world.

I was thinking this week about how society has gotten so crowded and society’s social mores have broken down so much that we are each bestowing and receiving little hurts to each other every day, but that in itself is not the damaging part. The most damage is coming from us sublimating these little indecencies multiple times a day, each and every day. We push them down, convince ourselves that they don’t actually hurt us and move on to the next thing. Some speak up, and start fights with strangers and/or friends (we all know these people too, am I right?), but most of us keep it all buried because it’s not worth it to start something, or we’re too busy, or we’re embarrassed that we would let a stranger hurt us like that.

I’m guessing that most people haven’t even given this much thought consciously. It’s the “can of worms” that we would open and who knows what might come rushing out, right?

So….my work is to prevent some of this in the first place. Anyone who has ever done something nice for someone else, just because, knows downloadthat it makes you feel better. It makes everything better. So, imagine a society where everyone is being kinder to one another. So much more livable, yes?

I’m asking for your help at the moment to fund this project. You can link to it here – Indiegogo. Anything would help – even $1. If you can’t afford $1, would you consider letting your contacts know about this project? I truly appreciate your time for reading this and hope your day is conflict free.

Are You Trapped in the “I’m So Busy” Mindset?

Too busy?

Too busy?

Hi y’all.

Been working on the new Indiegogo page while balancing a sick cat, an elderly mother and the usual pulls of life. Well, you know, not LITERALLY balancing them…. but it sure does feel like we’re all literally balancing all of our stuff somewhere on our persons, doesn’t it?

So, I have decided this week, that I will no longer utter the phrase “I’m so busy” to anyone ever again. Everyone is busy. That’s the state of the state of life now. My thinking is that this phrase is useless. I’ve been thinking about it as I hear it coming out of the mouths of others and can hear it more clearly than when it comes out of my own mouth. Granted I’ve been using it less and less but now it leaves a distasteful residue in my mouth and ears.

Here are the reasons I feel it’s a dead and harmful, yes harmful, phrase.

  • It’s redundant. Everyone is busy and there’s no point in stating it.
  • If there is a point in stating it, it’s often used as an excuse but we all know that we actually do what we want to do in the end, right? So, it’s insulting to the person you’re talking to. It’s the same as saying “I don’t want to make time for you”.
  • It often seems to be used in a competitive way, as if everyone’s trying to be busier than everyone else. I volunteer to be the loser in this battle!
  • Is this “so busy” state really the state we all want to be in? Running around, not thinking clearly, with no time to consider and contemplate? I don’t.
  • I saw an interesting quote recently that said “stress is a dysfunctional relationship with time”. So true. I would like to work on having a better relationship with time.
  • Ok lastly, it just sounds so disingenuous. Am I alone here?

So, that is my argument for better or for worse. I don’t think I’m completely off base though. Let me know what you think.

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Separately, the Indiegogo page is coming along and will be released on the public this weekend sometime. I am hoping that this less formatted style of crowd funding will make the whole process less stressful (time…right…relationship…right).

I will be asking for your help, when the time comes, and if you feel that you like the project – All The Pardons app (click on the link to learn more) – and are able, or even want, to help me get it out into the world – I will be truly grateful! Cheers!

Should I Rest Before I Dig In Again?? Yes!!

Ok, one break before I dig in again.Kickstarterlogo

This fall is looking crazy. I need to revamp my website and launch another funding site. All good things but…a lot of work. What isn’t really? Anything worthwhile is always going to be a bunch of work. The plus side is that it distracts the hell out of me which is an advantage no matter how you look at it these days. Am I right?

So, here’s the scoop. The app – All The Pardons – is in the phase where we are testing it and trying to find all of the kinks (not the fun kind) and work them out. Making an app like this is a huge investment of time, resources and money – all of which I’ve funded myself at the moment and it’s bending me a bit further than I’m comfortable with at this point in my life. The crowdsourcing is to help finish this project without making me live in a cardboard box on the curb outside of my house. Good goal, yes?

Secondly, I am looking voraciously (great word, don’t you think?) for people to help me test the app. The app is free, as most apps are. You would receive a download and you would just report back to me on what you find as you’re using it. You would be one of the first one’s in! Exciting, no?

I would love, love, love this collaboration and input. Really. Seriously. Earnestly. Determinedly. Resolutely. Fervently.images

Ok, that was a damned good use of Thesaurus.com!

Who’s stepping up!?

I’m sticking an adorable kitten in here to beg for me because no one can resist a cute begging kitten, right??

OK…One More Time!!

Ok, I wouldn’t call this a do over….I would call this a next try. I am changing the formula slightly and attempting a more successful bid.download

I am talking about a crowd funding campaign – for my app All The Pardons.  It’s the app that lets you know when you’re being rude or insensitive with your cell phone. The second installation from my Social Acupuncture/Social Meditation series. Yes, that’s the one.

Tried Kickstarter, wasn’t for my kind (and I mean the kind that isn’t an already fully funded, corporate, slick, pre-funded entity). Seriously, most of the campaigns I researched on there were funded on their first day and had videos that looked like they had a Hollywood budget. Does that happen? Not for me apparently.

downloadSo, the official plan is to try to do an IndieGoGo campaign. With this site I will be able to keep whatever amount people pledge and not have to reach a goal in order to keep the money. Sounds much better for a tiny little entity of one like me, doesn’t it?

I will be doing more research into this in the next few weeks but the aim looks to be early September for the launch. Are you with me??….I can’t hear you!….. Are you with me???

Please say “yes”. :)

Anyone Know God (can you put in a good word for me)?

Hello Everyone!

So, if God steps in there’s a chance I will make my Kickstarter goal, but assuming he/she’s too busy, probably not. So, I’m working on next steps.

Kickstarter page - http://kck.st/2tQ2Zl1

Kickstarter page – http://kck.st/2tQ2Zl1

The honest truth is that I don’t have the kind of social media following that one would need to successfully complete a Kickstarter campaign at this level. If you’ve had a chance to look around Kickstarter, the site is no longer a one person indie start up site – the pages are professionally done and the videos look as if Francis Ford Coppola himself lent a hand. This was an experiment and I went in both feet first. You win some, you lose some. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Yada, yada, yada….

My next thoughts move to grants and possibly a smaller Indiegogo campaign where, as opposed to Kickstarter where you only get the pledge money if you reach your final total goal, you get all pledge money in the end (no matter how much it is).

All The Pardons Home Page  being played with

All The Pardons Home Page being played with

This project will happen either way and I want to make a pledge to you that this is the case. I am still working hard in the background on the app (page sample attached here). It’s happening no matter what!

So this is the time for me to humbly ask you to sign up for my mailing list (I promise that I show that list to no one) so that I can keep you informed as to what is going on and when the app will be available. Also, I want to make sure that you get the app when it is ready!

In the meantime…I am looking for some testers to help me work out the kinks. Anyone interested? I would love for it to be one of my loyal Kickstarter backers (those guys get first dibs if they’re interested) or blog readers to help me out with this!

I look forward to hearing from you…..:)

People Really Think You Can Get Rich Off of an App?

Kickstarterlogo

So, as most of you know, my Kickstarter for All The Pardons app is three quarters of the way done. This was a learning experience through and through. It’s not over yet, but I think I can pretty safely say that I’m not going to make my goal.

I SO appreciate everyone who’s taken the time and thought to pledge any amount toward this project! You have no idea how much I appreciate it…anddd…I won’t forget it either.

This was a risk and I knew it would be a risk. I also knew that I was diving into totally uncharted waters.th

So, I am choosing to unequivocally be proud of myself. Yes, you heard me. “Who does that?”, you say? I’m trying to start a trend here.

So many people have told me that they never would have attempted this but, why not? I say. Nothing ventured, right?

It’s true that I did invest a bit in Facebook advertising – just to see if it would work. I got some attention but not sure how well it worked practically. Anyway, lots learned.

The next options are thus: 1)Redo crowdfunding but on Indiegogo, where there is no goal to reach to get the funding 2)Grant searching (already looking into this) 3)Both 4)Ideas I haven’t come up with yet but working on it.

It’s funny – going back to the title of this post – so many people who I’ve told about the app have said “you’re going to be rich”. That’s probably happened the number of times that you can count on 10 fingers and 10 toes and the companies are household words, but honestly, even those are companies where the app came much, much later, or later anyway. My point is, it’s a rarity and it’s really hard to even make your money back on an app, but of course, it costs a lot to have made, or make.

Anywho, I am mucho open to any ideas any of you may have on opportunities to fund this project. I am already exploring the Aspberger’s/Autism world as I think the app has a lot to offer anyone who has trouble with social cues. Ok, I’m open to ideas…I’m listening…go ahead….:)

I’ve Finally Launched My Kickstarter Campaign! Have You Done This Before?

All The Pardons logo

All The Pardons logo

Ok, so it’s finally launched! I can’t believe it!

This was a long and complicated road. It seemed so simple, but that’s an old story, right?

Have any of you done this, or tried to do this before (I say that because I can totally see how giving up might be an option :)? If you have, I would love to hear your experiences with it.

Well anyway, so my first deadline was set for before I took my vacation (the first one in 3 years has to fall in the middle of a deadline, right?), then it was moved to after my vacation (good move), then because of technical difficulties, two weeks after that. And now it’s done. Well….not done per say, but launched.

And this is exciting! I mean exciting in the way that it feels like you’re deep into a video game and you feel the competitive urge and passion that you must… win! And I do feel the passion here. This is a labor of love and I know you will all see the deep need and use for this app in the world. We all know someone who can use it…or we need it ourselves, right?

So, the next step is that I am now going to ask you to please consider pledging to my Kickstarter campaign. Just in case you aren’t familiar with Kickstarter…it’s all or nothing. Either I make my entire financial goal or I don’t make anything. It’s 30 days long and there are lots of fun gifts that you can get.
You can just pledge $1, if you’d like, and anything you pledge helps me reach my goal – so it’s all important and appreciated by me!

Santa Clara, Cuba

Santa Clara, Cuba

I would also like to ask that if you like what you see & hear, would you please share this with your contacts? The only way this will succeed is if it spreads far and wide and I definitely need help with that part.

On that note I will leave you with one of my gazillions of photos from my recent trip to Cuba where I was struck by the people’s sense of community and great social gifts. I’m not sure we were ever that warm a people here but we have definitely lost a great asset with the onset of technology in the front of our thoughts and phones buried deep within our faces.