Category Archives: Nerdery

Katy Perry Inspiration

Human Rights Campaign Gala 2017
Katy Perry at the HRC Gala

Things have started making sense lately.  Issues and concepts I have had difficulty with in the past have started clicking and my world view is truly becoming my own (I think it has to do with the return of Saturn I previously wrote about). In the process of this growth, I have been pointed the direction of pop singer Katy Perry- hear me out on this one.

I mentioned in my March Tunes post about non stop listening to “Chained the Rhythm”, thanks to randomly hearing it when visiting the Parliament House in Orlando. After multiple listens to the song (and I mean literally on repeat), I went ahead and added Ms. Perry to my list of people I follow on twitter. A day later, she posted video of her speech at the Human Rights Campaign Gala.  I watched it and cried. She had the answer I was looking for- you have to step out of what you were raised in.

In her speech, Katy speaks about being raised in an uber conservative household and even performing Christian music. She shared how she broke out of that mindset, “Most of my unconscious adolescence, I prayed the gay away at my Jesus camps. But then in the middle of it all, in a twist of events, I found my gift and my gift introduced me to people outside of my bubble. My bubble started to burst.”  

Throughout my life, the idea of LGBT issues had been seen as a no-no in my church background.  When I went to college, I had a few friends who were in the community and I spent quite a bit of time with. Even though I loved these people and didn’t see them as different from myself, there was always an issue inside of me when it was brought up at church. My viewpoint was “Hey, I’m not going to condemn you and tell you you’re going to Hell, don’t worry. I may not completely get what you’re doing, but it’s on you”.  Basically, I was, in church terms, lukewarm.

As I have gotten older, completed college, grad school and progressed onward in life, I had the same kind of feelings towards the LGBT community. I agreed that they should be able to marry when it came up and I definitely had some opinions that were more progressive than a lot of the folks I knew, but it was never really on the forefront of my mind and I never spoke up. Then Pulse happened.

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I have written about how much that tragedy in Orlando affected me and how I  was compelled to visit the memorial.  I mention in the post covering my visit, I woke up June 12, 2016 scared that my very good friend had been at the club that night. I was grateful that he had not been there.  Loss and I laid in bed and read the terrifying reports via twitter and other outlets before getting ready for church that morning.  We were both upset at the number of lives lost and I couldn’t imagine being there, waiting and waiting, to see if your loved ones and friends made it out safely.

I wore my bright scarf to church that morning, mainly because I didn’t own anything with a rainbow on it.  We sat in the back row and listened to the announcements and prayer requests. The church service was eventually over and not one person had as much as mentioned the Pulse events in a thought, prayer or anything. A week or two before, a policeman had been shot and killed somewhere way far off in the country and we had prayed three times about it. Three.

When I went to Pulse, I wore the same scarf I wore in memory of those people the morning after. It was one of the most important things I did on my trip to Florida.

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Have I mentioned how much I LOVE this art at P-House?

When visiting Orlando, I saw so much of the LGBT community, saw the way people are so accepting and saw the celebratory nature of the community. The last night of my trip we went to the Parliament House and I had the most fun of my entire vacation. Everyone was super accepting, loving and inclusive. I was told I was beautiful more than once, complimented on my dress, danced with, hugged, smiled at- I was welcome and had an amazing time. I was with a group of people who were enjoying being themselves, taking a second to not take life too seriously and spreading happiness.

In her speech, Katy Perry talked about the inclusiveness she found in the gay community, saying they “were the most free, strong, kind and inclusive people I have ever met. They stimulated my mind and they filled my heart with joy and they freaking danced all the while doing it. These people are actually magic, and they are magic because they are living their truth.”

That night my bubble truly, officially burst and I was surrounded by magic. I can’t wait to return to and live in a city that is filled with so much magic and love and hope.

Saying these words outloud makes me so happy but also scares me some.  I am working on not caring what others think as much, but I know some people who I love may be put off by these words due to their religious beliefs. All I truly want to share is compassion, empathy, love and hope.  You have shown me much of this in my life and I want to truly spread this legacy- all the way around. I am ready to be an ally for all people and spread the love that is in my heart. Thank you. I hope to make you all proud.

As Katy says in the song,

“So comfortable, we’re living
in a bubble, bubble
So comfortable, we cannot
see the trouble, trouble

So put your rose-colored glasses on
And party on”

Revelry Room for Live Tunes

 

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Loss and I don’t go to shows very often, unless it’s a big special outing. This past weekend, after a week solid of working and coming home to do the same thing the next morning, I was ready to get out of the house.   After dinner Saturday, I suggested we head out and do something- anything to get out of the house.  A little perusing later, I found Abbey Road Live was playing Revelry Room that night and some friends were even going to be there.

Loss is a huge Beatles fan and I fall into a fan category as well, plus it was at the venue I’d yet to check out in town, so we decided to venture out.
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The band was great, playing Abbey Road in its entirety, then a second set of random Beatles songs (including “Rhiannon” for the heck of it) and they were spot on. I’ve seen the Rolling Stones and I knew that I’d never see the Beatles in this lifetime, but I am totally ok with settling with having seen Abbey Road Live.

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The bar in Revelry room…and that lighting! 

I spent some of the night in the front row but couldn’t quite hang the whole time (am I getting old? Ugh.) but I did take the opportunity to explore the venue a little bit more and take in the details. After seeing the vibe of big sister venue, Track 29, I didn’t expect to be blown away by the Revelry Room and Hush Lounge (the first part of the room you walk in to) but I was. I know it’s got to be hard to make a room feel cozy that will hold thousands of people, such as at T29, but the Chattanooga Choo Choo crew found their niche and interior designer for the smaller rooms.

 

I loved the warm, welcoming feel with the wood, gold and cushy couches and banquets in the Hush lounge. They flowed well with the Palm Springs style ladies room just outside the hall and the more modern feel of the Revelry Room.  Whoever did their design, they can come help me out if they’d like to comp it all…

Overall, the sound was great, the venue was gorgeous and I dug the vibe and loved seeing a small show in a non-divey venue. I’ll for sure be back to the Revelry Room and may just swing by Hush Lounge for a sweet hang sometime when I’m near the Choo Choo as well. You’ve made a fan of me!

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I was happy to find a nice, comfy couch to finish the show sitting on!

Where to Find Me: OTR

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I’ve got a face for radio

When I planned my visit to Orlando, the first thing I knew I wanted to do was be a guest on the Orlando Tourism Report. Turns out if you’re crashing on the couch of the host, it helps you get on the air, so that Friday I got the opportunity to add my two cents to the topics covered. Of course, I was so tired and hungry by the last 30 minutes of the show, all I could think and talk about was going to lunch afterwards. Now in my defense, the show is on from 10 AM- noon and having slept just a few hours the night before and not having eaten, I couldn’t help but focus on our impending lunch at The Coop!

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They eventually fed me

Regardless, I had an awesome time getting to chat with the guys on air and can’t wait to weasel my way into being a guest again sometime (hint, hint…promise I won’t talk about being hungry…).  I’ve written about the show before  and think they have some of the best coverage of the Orlando tourism world.  After listening to so many Disney-specific podcasts, it’s really cool to listen to a show that covers it all and dives into what I find to be super interesting content.  For example, on this show that I was on, Ken (with MUCH help from Ed) breaks some news on the Nintendo land that is going in to Universal.

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Ken pondering aloud “What is the name of this peach colored princess?” when discussing Nintendo

You can check out the episode through their site or the OTR Itunes/etc. I have to say though, I think the best part of OTR is the adventures afterward. The crew has lunch together most Fridays after the show and often times checks out some aspect of the local tourist industry (I love that the boys actually get out and see and do things instead of just reading about them on the internet).  When I was there, we took a very detailed walking tour of Winter Park and ended the afternoon (thankfully for the blisters I got on my feet) with a boat tour of the lakes around the area. We saw Carrot Top’s house- I was a happy girl.

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We were on a boat!

I Love La La Land

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If you’ve noticed anything about me, I have a thing for classic films, vintage everything and am a sucker for a good story. I saw La La Land with very little prior knowledge except Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling were the  stars and folks who I really trusted had fallen in love for it.

The film follows Mia and Seb through their meeting and relationship, while working on following their dreams in LA and what that means as time passes and they are in their late 20’s. I totally relate to the dream following vibe and did I mention that it’s (somewhat) a musical?

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Emma and Ryan dance, they sing, they are naturals and I have simply just eaten it up. The colors are all gorgeous, pops of primaries in the wardrobe. I want most of the clothes that Emma’s character wears, especially that yellow dress above- and let me just say I predict so many yellow dresses to be in this spring and summer.

I’m also so in love with the music from the film. The opening number of “Another Day of Sun” is one of the catchiest songs around and John Legend’s character, Keith’s, number that makes it into the film is something I wish there was a whole record based around. The dancing is super on point and I was genuinely impressed with how well these actors did their numbers.

There’s so much that I love about this film, as you can tell. I’ve seen it twice in one weekend and am hopeful to revisit it again this weekend, too. I’ve barely seen any movies in the past few years, so that might show how much I enjoyed this film.

Obviously, La La Land is my aesthetic for 2017.

Hero Mode: an Ode to Her Universe

Life can get crazy and times can be hard, but it’s always nice to find comfort in things that are around day to day.

Recently life has found a way to throw a lot at us with car issues, the end of the semester for Loss, the craziness of the oncoming holidays and weird work schedules, but I decided some self care was needed to stay (somewhat) sane. So it’s been yummy hot chocolate drinks and episodes of Gilmore Girls to help take my mind off some things.  I’ve also been lucky to have some rad stuff going on, such as a friend from out of town coming through and meeting up with her one afternoon.

So how does Her Universe fit into this? The Hero Mode shirt from their Kohl’s work out collection from this past fall has helped with this self care and has added some confidence to my days. I’ve worn it a few times this week and it’s helped me to realize that I can be someone as awesome as Black Widow and power through and be the Hero for us.  It’s helped me keep my head up and try and be as positive as I can.

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So, here I am, staying Hero Mode and getting through everyday the best I can. And that’s totally good. Nothing going on is so serious that it can’t be handled. And I feel so much better knowing and remembering that.

Thanks for the confidence boost, Ashley Eckstein & all the Her Universe team!