Monday, July 25, 2011

A Thousand Words...

Unlike Scott Schumann (one of my favorite bloggers), I'm not tight with the editor-in-chief of Vogue Italia, Franca Sozzani... so I can only speculate as to her particular motivation in including these three lovely young women on the cover of the June edition. And I actually and sincerely appreciate that a publication as prestigious as Vogue - and in one of the major global hubs of fashion - would openly declare that women with curves are beautiful and fashion forward.

We're on a slippery slope indeed, however, when the standard of success of modern (post-post modern?) feminism is set by the further objectification of women: congratulations! Women of all shapes and sizes can now be viewed as sex objects! I know, I know: sexy people are desirable, desirable people are envied, the happiness of being envied is glamour, and glamour sells magazines.... We've come a long way, baby?

Last summer I read a really amazing book by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn called Half the Sky. It is truly "a passionate call to arms against the oppression of women around the globe - "the central moral challenge" of our time" (I totally took that from the book's jacket - but it's completely true). As a woman, I felt the lives of those interviewed - theirexperiences - cut into my heart, grab a hold, and rock me with the power of their story and the strength of their character. As a western woman, I couldn't help but feel slightly detached. This isn't to say that I wasn't still moved, very often to tears, by what I read - but I had no mechanism or concept of how to process my thoughts and feelings into something concrete and conducive to the betterment of the whole of society. Which is exactly what these myriad heroes were doing: working through their experiences and changing the discourse and reality of their society in positive, meaningful ways.

And then I had the opportunity to study a small, humble, yet infinitely profound document prepared by the Institute for Studies in Global Prosperity (ISGP) called "Advancing Toward the Equality of Women and Men". I knew while reading Half the Sky that the inequality of women and men is as much a problem in developed nations as it is in developing nations....

Addressing the importance that a fundamental knowledge of our selves and of the purpose behind our creation can have in overcoming oppression, the ISGP states that "even in societies where women have been granted certain political and economic rights and are legally empowered, both men and women are denied knowledge of their true selves. Women are objectified and sexuality is made the core of their identity. Their aims and aspirations are set in terms of pleasing men. Attraction to beauty [...] is deliberately perverted to the point where women and men are seen as no more than means for the gratification of material desires."

It is true, the human body is a wonderful, beautiful thing. It has been uniquely designed as the receptacle of the human soul - and it is capable of tremendous things. Let us celebrate our appreciation of the 'body beautiful' for its achievements and for the service it renders the soul - and not because a small number of them have been used as a marketing tool in the advertising of culture.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

On Development...

'Akka, Israel

I've finally had a chance to upload the last roll of film I shot in Israel... and I'm pretty happy with the results.

One of the things I like most about film are the little surprises that are in store for you when you get your pictures back. Like the way that the sun races through this picture I took last month at the House of Abdullah Pasha in 'Akka. It's like a gift to your future self.

I think that all development works that way, though. Sometimes you need a moment to step back and really examine how you've been growing and maturing.

"I have wakened in Thy shelter, O my God, and it becometh him that seeketh that shelter to abide within the Sanctuary of Thy protection and the Stronghold of Thy defense. Illumine my inner being, O my Lord, with the splendours of the Dayspring of Thy Revelation, even as Thou didst illumine my outer being with the morning light of Thy favor." - Baha'u'llah

I hope your day holds a myriad pleasant surprises....

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Origami Parade...

A just because it's lovely picture, courtesy Po, of P is for Pinata and The Monacycle Diaries.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

An Emotion In Time...

Or: on introducing my summer jam.

I'm having some departure anxiety... and this song pretty much sums how I feel. I've lived in Haifa, Israel for the last four years of my life and in less than 2 weeks I'll be leaving this wonderful place. It still seems all very surreal to me.

It's like my days are going fine, fine, fine - and then it hits me that I'm leaving so soon. For now I'm being kept busy with wrapping up my work at the office, prepping to win a water polo game on Saturday (ahem!), and planning for my brief sojourn in Rome on my way to the States.

Yes, that's it... I'll focus on the positive. Vacation.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

On Fandom...

Awesome: via Bitte Ein Kuss.

Alternately known as "Dear Harry Potter, thanks for not sucking... Sincerely, Aimee".

Some friends and I went to see the new (and last - for those of you just emerging from a time-warp/alternate universe) Harry Potter movie. The lead up to this movie has had my geekery on over-drive... but I don't really care.

Fun and random trivia: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix was the last movie I saw in the States before moving to Haifa. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 is the last movie I'll see in Haifa before moving back to the States.

I kind of feel like I've come full circle.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Ha Yom...


So I have a big game tonight... this picture was taken at last week's game. I'm hoping we win again. Positive thoughts are welcome.

p.s. Funny faces and taped-up tennis elbow aside, I make this goalie shhh look good!

Monday, July 11, 2011

...Until It Is Done

Source: via Aimee on Pinterest

So you know how, in addition to playing with the women's water polo team in Tivon (Tivon-o!), I occasionally [like twice a week] train with the men's team at Technion University here in Haifa? Well, about a month ago - in one of the last practices of the semester at Technion - I blocked a really great shot from a friend who shall remain nameless. 'Nameless' is easily twice as strong as I am... and I totally hyper-extended my right elbow.

You'll know this as tennis elbow. And the only cure is time. ...that I don't have. I've been doing about a many goalie exercises as a lady can do without actually touching a ball. It is pretty much the height of boring. But my patience paid off - we won our game on Saturday! I would like to shake the hand of the person who invented water proof tape. Genius.

You should know, of course, that as my klutz factor is actually boundless, I've gone and hurt myself - again. On Sunday, ironically while walking to a chiropractic appointment, I slipped and fell on some marble steps - and landed smack(!) on my tailbone. It is the pain.

Thankfully the chiropractor was able to get me sorted - but don't think that my teammates haven't threatened (offered?) to put me in a bubble or wrap me up like a mummy! At least until the end of the championship tournament....

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Lovely Sunday...

India : Oxelo Skateboards from on Vimeo.

Head's up courtesy Melody Eh$ani - this video, featuring three members of the Oxelo Skateboard Team (Loic, Simon, and Nans), is a magical travel diary highlighting 4 cities in India: Bangalore, Jaipur, New Delhi, and Agra.


{Weekend updates pending}

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Let the Good Times Roll...


How badly would you love to be a fly on that wall, hmmm? Awesome People [...] is seriously a pretty rad little blog (tumblr, for those of you into the semantics of interweb life).

Speaking of awesome people hanging out together, I'm trying to get as much [ahem] face time as possible with my people before I hit the proverbial road.

Funnily enough this doesn't preclude taking an odd night for myself. ...time to relax, unwind, meditate - to really let my time in the Holy Land; my interactions with both the amazing people I've met and with the land itself, sink in.

Do you guys ever do that? Hang out with yourself and your thoughts? I kind of love it.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

T-Minus 10 Days And Excited...!

Courtesy Emma.

Dumbledore's Army will be kicking ass and taking names (soon!) in a theater near you.

Look alive.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

...To Grow On

So you may or may not know that I just celebrated my birthday. As Jay-Z would say, I'm "young enough to know the right car to buy, but grown enough not to be rims on it"....

These women - via Advanced Style (a street style blog courtesy of Ari Seth Cohen) - prove that high fashion is appropriate at any age. I love that their conversations about and commitment to art and personal expression are so in the moment. Their fingers are definitely on the pulse!

All head's up credit (and thanks!) goes to the equally art and fashion conscious ladies at Honestly... WTF. Aptly named. Promise.

Just Because...

Cookie Monster: he's so fresh!
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