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“Forever never seems that long until you’re grown.” December 31, 2010

Posted by Leticia Rojas in Haphazard.
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The end of the year and the beginning of a new one makes me more emotional than a middle aged woman watching her first and only child go somewhere far, far away like college. And even though “time”, is just a human invention, a creation to make sure we have “control” and can track what has passed, what is here, and what the future holds… whether it’s something to look forward to or not. I really hate it, or should I say strongly dislike it, when people say things like, “2010 sucked, I can’t wait for the new year!” Though the new year seems like a fresh start, shaking up the etch-a-sketch to blank… it’s not. If anything, it’s a new page in your already crowded, doodled, messy notebook… at best. Though, nothing else can be erased or added to the previous pages… but that’s another issue altogether. These are just my opinions, and I know I can come across as a human that values my own opinion more than a pretty penny, they are merely my opinions… nothing more and nothing less. But what can I say, humans are strange… and I am far from an exception… so far I can barely see that boundary line. Year after year, day after day, hour after hour I learn something new about something, someone, somewhere and I store that in my brain if I like or dislike it, to create a reaction or action later on in life. And though I am still young and naive and I have a hell of a whole lot to learn about this humongous world (that in reality is just a speck of dust in our gargantuan universe) I feel like this year, but really, this episode of my life… I have learned so much. So much so, that it’s hard to know where to begin. And maybe if I sift back through this old love letter to myself, I can laugh about how stupid I was back then.  I can only hope that I grow enough to realize how stupid I was.

  1. I’ve learned that you don’t have to be rude to not take shit from people. Killing with kindness is a very difficult thing to do, but I’m trying to master this (by 2022 I should have this down pat).
  2. I’m in better agreement with myself. I am beginning to understand what my expectations will be and how the people in my life fit them. No one is perfect, but you learn what you love and what you don’t and deal with the things that you don’t like. How you deal with it, though, is entirely up to you… then that’s when you seek out number one. I hope that “dealing” with for certain people don’t mean doing anything illegal! Killing with kindness is not meant to be taken in a literal sense, and if you’ve seen Pushing Daisies… you just might know what I’m getting at!
  3. Success is much easier than failure. It is so hard to wake up and look in the mirror, disgusted with yourself, beating yourself up in your brain discussing and analyzing your issues. How can you defend yourself… from yourself? Patting yourself on the back, and moving forward is easier than failing and finding a way to move on and pick yourself back up again. Sure, you may be disgraced and ashamed… and as cliché as it may be, you need to learn to “dust yourself and try again”. Your mind will thank you for ending those loud arguments.

Resolutions are always weird. It’s important to have goals, but you don’t need to build them around a calendar year… calendars are something that can be bought in a freaking bookstore! Why would you base your life goals on something worth no more than ten bucks?! Change because you want your habits to become your lifestyle, not because it’s January 1st somewhere in the world.

Now that I’ve dabbled into a few reasons why I have a love/hate relationship with the end of the year, it’s important to know why I love it! I love the new year because it’s a worldwide celebration! And even though I kind of bashed on the concept of “time” earlier in my discussion, new year’s celebrations are kind of like the wave at a sports game! Everyone is a part of it, one time zone at a time! There are no religious, sexual, or racial boundaries when it comes to celebrating and bringing in a brand new year. And even though, at the end of the day… a new year, is just a new day… how cool is it to think that 80% of the world’s population is probably hungover at the exact same time? Or most importantly, thinking about the fact that this is probably the only global day where the most hugs and kisses are given out.

~  2  0  1  0   F  A  V  O  R  I  T  E  S  ~

The following are all the new discoveries I made this year. They have brought me a lot of joy and I think it’s important to share things that make you smile. Oh, laugh at me if you want… it’s not like I’ll know! There are a few guilty pleasures listed that I should be ashamed about… but I’m not (hint some of the top 40 hits are my bubblegum guilty pleasures, but why hide the fact that they made me turn the volume up?).

  • Movies: Tangled, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 1, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Easy A, Sunshine Cleaning, Zombieland, Eclipse, Adventureland, Being John Malkovich; Sorry, I didn’t get to watch 127 Hours, Black Swan, or The Social Network but they are most definitely on the list of things to see that I couldn’t afford!
  • Music: White Lies To Lose My Life (key tracks: The Price of Love, Farewell to the Fairground, Taxidermy), La Roux La Roux (key tracks: I’m Not Your Toy, Tigerlily, In For the Kill, Saviour), Rodrigo y Gabriela 11:11 (11:11, Hanuman, Chac Mool), Little People Mickey Mouse Operation (key track: Start Shootin’), A Perfect Circle Thirteenth Step (key tracks: Gravity, Noose, Weak and Powerless); Thievery Corporation “Beautiful Drug, Sweet Tides, and La Femme Parallel”, Peter Bjorn and John “The Chills”, Pogo “Go Out and Love Someone and Alohomora”, Shakira “Waka Waka and La Loca”, Rihanna “Only Girl”, Jade Smith “Whip My Hair”, Miguel featuring J. Cole “All I Want is You”, Far East Movement “Like a G6”, Lady Gaga “Alejandro”, Edward Maya and Vika Jigulina “Stereo Love”, Kaskade “4 am (Adam K & Soha Remix), Deadmau5 “Ghosts and Stuff and Faxing Berlin”, Kaskade and Deadmau5 “Move for Me”, La Roux “Bulletproof (Dave Aude’s Cherry Mix)”, La Roux “In For the Kill (Skream Remix)”
  • Television: CONAN, Modern Family, Californication, Pushing Daisies
  • Dreams: Three beaches with my small, Asian child, Hanging out with Conan O’Brien, and Sitting in Brandon Boyd’s apartment talking about his music.
  • Other fond moments: finally using Twitter, learning how to ride a bike (again, but better), learning how to knit, the birth of my little boy cousin Nelson Isaac, Myrtle Beach family vacation, my two favorite albums gifted to me by my favorite, most talented artist (for free), Vintage Volume finally played live (three times), seeing La Roux live, visiting the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum, the snowstorm happened this year… right? Okay so, that too. By the way, these are in no particular order, because obviously the birth of my little cousin holds a lot more weight in terms of importance and fond moments than having a Twitter account!

I truly hope that this new year will bring many blessings to everyone in the whole world. That may sound naive, but I’m talking about good health and happiness, not big yachts and Suisse bank accounts, although those are always more than welcome! Misery loves company, and it is hard to contain. So, if more people are happy with much to be thankful for, I think we all could spread a little more cheer. Little things like being polite, saying good morning, using your turn signal, or just saying those magic words, “please, thank you, you’re welcome, and I love you” can make all the difference in someone’s day. There have been times where I’ve just wanted to sit down and tell people to think about things differently and calm down… maybe it’s enough to wish that they will figure it out for themselves before it’s too late. Have a wonderful new year everyone!

 

P  E  A  C  E

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The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum December 4, 2010

Posted by Leticia Rojas in Places.
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I have a love for music that cannot be expressed into words. My boyfriend also shares this same love for music, but lucky for him he plays guitar and can play just about any other instrument he can get his talented hands on. So we both decided, what better way to spend our four year anniversary than going to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum?!

The best place Cleveland, Ohio has to offer.

When I told people we booked tickets on the Greyhound to Cleveland, Ohio everyone thought it was a joke or asked why in the world would we want to go to Cleveland of all places. A few people even tried to talk us out of going to Cleveland, describing how dangerous it is, reminding us to be safe, or suggesting a nice bed and breakfast getaway instead. We thought hopping on a bus to Cleveland was more our style. The bus ride up there was ridiculous and long but a good experience, but that’s a different story.

Posing with slightly large guitars.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum is amazing, point blank. There are seven levels jam (pun intended) packed with music memorabilia. Unfortunately, the museum only allows visitors to take pictures outside of the museum and inside the lobby since most of the memorabilia is on loan from the artists. I’m serious, they really enforce this rule – they yelled at a few visitors! That being said, this post will not have many pictures, but I will describe the excitement in what I saw as best as I can.

My favorite exhibits included:

Jimi Hendrix: his father donated so much to the museum, which was very selfless and very thoughtful on his part. There’s the old couch Jimi used to practice and lounge on. It’s split pea green with short wooden legs, a little tattered but in fairly good condition. I really wanted to dive in and lay on it, but that would’ve gotten me kicked out of the museum (not worth it). The threads he wore on stage were amazing, still in great condition with vibrant colors and wild patterns. They were a bigger size than I’d imagined since he was so skinny. The exhibit also included some childhood artwork. I thought the best part of the exhibit were his lyrics on paper. The paper is now old, thin, and frayed… but once was new, with fresh ideas from a genius musician. I envisioned him sitting on that split pea green couch, emptying his soul in a hurry to release the overflow of thoughts to capture them on paper. Thoughts captured to last for generations to come.

John Lennon: this exhibit included a few outfits, especially Beatles attire, a lot of childhood artwork, he was born a creative powerhouse, some grade reports – academics wasn’t really his “gig”, and other random memorabilia. I wish I remembered more, I just remember being pretty mesmerized.

Elvis Presley: I have been obsessed with Elvis and his story since childhood. I think I’ve done at least three school reports on this musical man. Like Jimi’s exhibit, his exhibit was full of cool things I wouldn’t have imagined I’d be interested in like the budget for him and his crew during their tours or how he asked a woman he didn’t even know if she liked a car she was checking out and bought it for her on the spot.

The Rolling Stone Magazine Covers: I’ve never been too interested in the magazines, not for lack of love of writing and music, but recently their magazines have been going away from those two things for reasons unbeknown to me. But their covers have definitely made musical history for decades. And now that I think about it, I just love old magazines in general, so much so… that every time I’m in a thrift store I sift through whatever old magazines they have in the store and the older, the better! It’s almost like going back in time… almost.

The Hall of Fame Gallery is great, too. It’s basically the best soundtrack ever. You can check out the inductees here.

I really wish I could remember more about the museum itself, but places like these you definitely have to see and experience it for yourself! It’s really the only place in Ohio, beside Cedar Point, worth going to (unless you like the Cleveland Cavaliers or Browns). So the next time you’re in Ohio, and are bored to death (which you will be), go to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum! Two things to remember: don’t take the Greyhound up there and don’t eat the food at the museum (it’s overpriced and microwavable).

Yoko Status, Fits the Setting

Happy Travels!

“Finally My Saviour is Here” November 12, 2010

Posted by Leticia Rojas in Haphazard, Things.
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There are few things I love better than live music. Unfortunately  I have zero talents for singing or playing any sort of instrument, but I do have ears that could listen for hours to any and all music (except Country, that’s where I draw the line).

I have been waiting to see La Roux since I first discovered her song, “Bulletproof” on a drive to work, a peppy Spring day, with the windows down and the radio up. Her voice and the sound was unlike a lot of other music on the pop scene these days, and fans of classic rock, glamorous 80s and other eccentric music desperately needed to be saved from the Lady Gaga’s infesting the radio. I know that sounds harsh, but it is what it is. I had been waiting to hear music that really tugged at my musical heart strings, because I’d practically exhausted all the tunes from the 50s-90s and I needed something new to make me happy and La Roux was and IS the perfect fit.

I can’t even put into words how much I adore her. She is beautiful. Her style is original and impeccable. Her personality, at least in interviews, seems genuine and quite hilarious. It’s borderline crazy how obsessed I am with her, so I’m not going to dig myself a hole and delve into it further. But hey, everyone has these healthy obsessions, right?

Needless to say, after I bought the album, loved every song, and listened to the album for two months straight (maybe longer, and I wouldn’t even click the FM/AM button) I was anxious to see her live! I heard she was scheduled to perform at 9:30 club, but the show had been cancelled, sold out and rescheduled… so when I saw she was going to be in Baltimore at Ram’s Head Live I bought them right away! The show ended up being cancelled as well, because she had been sick with bronchitis. So essentially, I had waited since June to see her, and finally saw her on Sunday, November 7th.

La Roux's Elly Jackson

Blurred La Roux

I took very few pictures because I was dancing/singing the entire time. Except when I stopped to record her cover of The Rolling Stones’ “Under My Thumb”, which is awesome. But again, it’s worth saying she is beautiful and very talented.

For those that aren’t into the whole neo 80s, synth pop deal, all of her songs are made with acoustic guitar and sounds just as brilliant. I cannot wait until she has an acoustic album. To me, music is more than just the actual sound, but the lyrics, and the feelings they bring. She awakens so much within me, and I will openly thank her here for that.

I drove 3 hours, back and forth, to see her live at a very nice, spacious venue – kudos to Ram’s Head. If you haven’t checked out her music, other than listening to “Bulletproof” radio over and over again, check her out on YouTube. I’ll be here, anxiously awaiting her next performance.