Halloween Is Coming….

Hello All! My favorite time of year is almost upon us! Nestled in my corner of Colorado, I can definitely feel fall in the air, and I am loving it! Soon the leaves will start turning, the sun will set earlier, and Pumpkin Spice will perpetually taint the air no matter where you go. Soon enough, Halloween decorations–or regular everyday decorations in my house–will be displayed all over. And even though it is more than a month away, if you are a DYI-er like myself, it is time to start planning for that Halloween costume!!

And Funky Lollipop should be your go-to for both regular Halloween-Theme and DIY-Costume-Idea earrings!

From Your Funky Stylist….

These red-eyed beauties are one-of-a-kind and are available now online at our FunkyLollipop Etsy Shop! Perfect for a punk/ goth/ dark costume.

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/250948676/halloween-red-eyes-earrings?ref=shop_home_active_35

These hand-painted green eyes are absolutely unique and would be a stellar addition to any collection!

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A personal favorite of mine, the skull-bead earrings. This pair would make an excellent addition to any punk-rocker/ biker/ goth style Halloween costume. Or, if you are like me, to everyday-wear!

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/250841979/halloween-skull-bead-earrings?ref=shop_home_active_45

A good autumn addition, the hand-painted black-on-red tree…

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/250149942/hand-painted-autumn-tree-earrings?ref=shop_home_active_46

Another personal favorite: the blue-eyed skulls. I will point out right now that these earrings are on the heavier side, but are still quite the statement piece! Paired with something orange, I use these earrings to support my home-state’s football team, the Denver Broncos. Paired with red, I use them on Independence Day in support of the USA! They are, again, perfect for any punk-rocker/ biker/ goth style Halloween costume, or everyday wear!

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/250148152/halloween-skulls-with-blue-eyes-earrings?ref=shop_home_active_47

My absolute favorite pair of earrings I, Funky, have ever made! I refer to these as clavicle-ticklers, because at almost 7″ long, the little toes do tickle the clavicle bone! Perfect, once again, for any punk/ biker/ goth style Halloween costume, Independence Day, or every concert ever, if you’re me!

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/249177105/halloween-full-skeleton-earrings?ref=shop_home_active_48

From Your Lollipop Stylist…

Are you planning on being a Steampunk Traveler for Halloween this year? Are you planning a trip to the Renaissance Fair soon? Then these Ultimate Steampunk Earrings are a must-have!!

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/238929127/ultimate-steampunk-earrings?ref=shop_home_active_71

These Asian-inspired beauties are perfect for a Geisha or a Renaissance costume! Simple yet elegant; fresh and classic at the same time. These are also great for a unique take on Christmas/ Holiday earrings.

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/555518161/turquoise-and-red-asian-inspired?ref=shop_home_active_1

If you are a Game of Thrones fan, than these exotic dagger earrings would be absolutely perfect for a Dothraki costume!! Or maybe a witch, shaman, or a strong warrior woman! Any way you slice it, these earrings are absolutely badass!!

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/541718768/exotic-dagger-earrings?ref=shop_home_active_2

Are glitter and shimmery wings in your future for Halloween this year? A pair of furry trousers ending with cloven hooves? A woodland nymph? A nature-loving fairy? A Pan-like creature with a crown of flowers and leaves? Then these earrings are perfect for you!!

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/541715760/woodland-charms-earrings?ref=shop_home_active_6

Do you feel as if you were born a few decades too late? Do you long for a dress of fringe to tickle your thighs and an adorable feathered fascinator to grace the top of your head? Are you planning on being a 1920’s Flapper Girl for Halloween this year? If your colors fall in shades of blue, then these earrings are a must-have for you! With a distinctive vintage feel, these earrings will easily add an authentic feel to any vintage-style costume! Contact Lollipop personally, and she can probably make you a fascinator to match!!!

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/541705916/vintage-inspired-aquamarine-earrings?ref=shop_home_active_12

Lastly, one of my personal favorites of my partner’s earrings, the classic vintage skull print earrings! Again, a great addition to any Halloween collection, these unique stunners highlight the classic skull illustration. Great for any steampunk/ punk/ rocker/ badass costume!!

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/499596182/vintage-skull-print-earring?ref=shop_home_active_15

 

I want to note that these earrings are made with standard hooks (which I also wear in my cartilage, in case you were looking for a new look) , but we can be persuaded to alter them for clip-on/ post/ or sensitive skin. I also want to note that most of these earrings are one-of-a-kind and may not be available for re-creation, so grab them quick!

This is the first of several Halloween-Based Blogs that I will be writing this year, but I wanted to get started now. Please stay-tuned for the next installment: Halloween Kitty-Kat! Also, keep an eye on our FunkyLollipop Etsy Shop for new styles and gift-giving ideas!

 

 

Meow Wolf: Sometimes Epic Adventures Involve Cats & Dogs & Itchy-O

 

So readers, your dear Funky went on a pretty darn amazing, life-altering, trip at the end of March. I found another local band to love, and I followed them all the way down to Santa Fe, New Mexico just to see them play in the infamous (in my crowd) Meow Wolf. Looking back at my own stories, I am very surprised to see that I have yet to discuss the band, Itchy-O….SHAME ON ME!!

Itchy-O is an experience. Whether you are trying to just listen to them, or looking them up online, or you are actually there, you will never be really ready for what you are about to encounter. The way that I describe them, is, “They’re a marching band on crack…and acid.” To put it another way, they are like a marching band on steroids, and their vibe is cerebral, to say the least. There are about forty members in the band, and every single one of them wears a mask–complete anonymity. (I happen to now know several members of the band–they have been unmasked–but I am not allowed to publicly mention their names, haha.) The main instruments are drums and computer-generation-manipulation of sounds. Most of the band members invade the crowd, their “instruments” being mobile–some carrying their drums like on-the-front backpacks, others with a “table” strapped to their chests to hold their laptops and giant amplifying speakers on their backs–or just being creepy wraith-esque figures dancing/ crawling/ disturbingly still tucked in a corner to startle you. The only exception to the rule of them all infiltrating the crowd are those with the BIG drums–they are usually on the stage or somewhere where they can be the central focus.

I have been to several Itchy-O concerts….you could say that I am something of a groupie, hahaha! And the show never gets old, honestly. My favorite part? When you suddenly stop being an individual and become part of the whole. It was rather startling the first time! I mean, if you have read any of my blogs, then you know that I am a dark, proud, daring individual; I like being able to stand out from the crowd. But an Itchy-O concert is different…

It really is hard to explain, but the best similarity I can think of is how a crowd feels during a ceremonial practice. I know, I know…there aren’t a lot of those in our mainstream world anymore, so look it up, haha. Check out the Maasai Adumu Ceremony (don’t forget that I work at a museum, hahaha!). Anyway, there comes a moment during an Itchy-O concert where the individual ceases to exist. You form one consciousness, move together as one–feel every soul and molecule of energy converge into one giant seething mass of feel-good unity. It’s breathtaking!

Although no mere words could ever be enough to truly capture the experience that is Itchy-O, lets move on to Meow Wolf…where again, no mere words could ever be enough to adequately describe that experience.

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Meow Wolf is an “art-collective”, nestled in Santa Fe, New Mexico. According to Wikipedia, it was established in 2008 by a collection of artists who desired to provide their city with a unique art house and music venue. But I did not know any of this when I headed down there, so let me attempt to explain the experience in my own words, while still keeping the mystery alive enough that you all will have to venture down there yourselves, without any spoilers…

I will start at the beginning: I woke up the morning I was supposed to leave for my trip, to my brother panicking that he couldn’t get out of the driveway because of snow! What? I admit it, I was stressed TFO! Well not to mention that up until that point, I was dealing with my father’s health issues, I had gotten into that age-old trap of being annoyed and complaining about my job and therefore hating it, and “The One” (see https://funkylollipop.com/2016/08/11/can-i-read-my-book-please/) came back and left twice since November and this last breakup was over the trip to Meow Wolf–so yeah, you could say I was very close to a breakdown, haha! In any case, the panicked wake up call started the day off bad, and then an insensitive text from my brother’s boss to my brother, but recieved on my phone because his phone doesn’t work at our house, sent me over the edge! Basically, I responded rather harshly and then immediately apologized (in a mean way) but my brother’s boss must be an amazing person because he felt that I “seemed stressed”, so he bought me a giant bottle of wine and made my brother promise to make sure I had a great weekend. This, of course, made me bawl like a baby, lbvs! So from that moment on, I promised myself that I was going to do just that–have a great stress free weekend.

By the afternoon the snow had cleared up completely–yay Colorado! So, four people and a dog left Colorado around 10:00 Friday evening, in a nice little rental car, because all of us drive older cars that we do not trust to take out of state, haha! We headed south, (I left my stress and pain at the Colorado State line) and after a few–sometimes questionable–rest stops, we made it to our buddy’s hotel room at around 4:00 am Saturday morning, in Santa Fe, NM. We had a lovely two-bed room, and five people and a Scruffy to sleep in it. I got to share a bed with only one other person (who happened to be a handsome fellow) and the dog, so I was happy.

The next day we went to lunch at a vegan-friendly Mexican restaurant for our newly vegan boy (it was yummy, haha, even though I still had meat.) Then half of us went to peruse the random shops, while the boys and the dog went to sniff out that skate park! (I found an awesome shop called “Mira’s” but it might as well have been named “Rachel’s” it was so perfect.) Around five, we met back at the hotel to greet the three new-comers who would bring our hotel-room occupants total up to eight people and a dog!! Talk about a packed house! Thankfully, these three brought an air mattress for them to share, hahaha!

The best part was that our hotel was within walking distance of Meow Wolf, so I dug into that gifted bottle of wine, before we headed down. We showed up a little bit early, so we could traverse the venue…but little did we know, we could have come as soon as they opened, and still would not have enough time to catch it all.

Built in an old bowling ally, Meow Wolf is vast and full of mystery. Around every corner, in every nook and cranny, through every hidden fireplace and cupboard under the stairs, a new wonder waits to be discovered. Even the bathrooms were a place of fantasy and visual excitement. Several worlds merge into one under the high warehouse-esque ceilings, and stepping over the threshold imbibes in you the sheer joy and innocence of a child on a Wonderland adventure.

Then you add Itchy-O, and you suddenly have a heady mix of mystique and euphoria.

At one point, one of our buddies had a bit too much fun, and we lost him. What could have been a major bummer that we were missing some of the show, ended up being a blessing in disguise, since the hidden recesses of Meow Wolf were abandoned for the Itchy-O show in the center. We discovered rooms that we had missed in our quick inspection before the show. My favorite room, of course, was the Eyeball Room, in which singular orbs of every size and description graced the surface of the rounded cave-like room. But that wasn’t all to see….

The amazing night ended, and we all trooped back to the hotel, and we found our lost friend soon thereafter, so everything was good. After a quick dip in the pool with some fellow Colorado pals and customers at the same hotel, we all went to bed. Eight people and a Scruff, two beds and an air mattress–one big happy family.

After a scattered morning, the eight of us (and a Scruff), left in our respective vehicles, to head home. We stopped for a quick bite at an Indian vegan restaurant (yes, readers, I ate a meal without meat…), then got back on I-25 for the long trip home. This time, I was the one who drove first (I did drive about an hour in the wee hours of Saturday morn), because my car-mates had a little bit more fun than I did, haha, so they all fell asleep, leaving me to enjoy the drive by myself. Which I certainly did, for it had been a very long time since I’d had that much time to think all to myself. Deciding I was happy driving, I drove the whole eight hours, while they mostly slept.

I had several epiphanies on that drive. Again, if you have read any of my blogs, then you know that I am very capable of dark, painful thoughts. I’ve seen some things in my lifetime that have left me sad and fairly broken. But I have also always said, “Everything happens for a reason.” Well, either I believe that theory, or I don’t. If I do–and for sanity’s sake I think I better–then every single bad experience was meant to be, meant for me. Lessons learned, life taught….every death, every bad relationship….was meant for me to make me who I am.

For example, all of the breakups with The One–meant to be. I had buried my heart in anger, after my mom died. He was the one who helped me find it again. (“It does exist!”) I didn’t know how much I actually wasn’t feeling. I mean, I know I love my friends, and I enjoy all the good times that we have–but I wasn’t actually feeling it. It was like a facade, window dressing on an abandoned building. And what would it take to break through my healthy coating of anger? Love and pain, of course! I cannot fault him for anything though. Once I left the pain on the state border, all I was left with is love, and that is what I brought back with me from Santa Fe. Love–love that actually hurts with it’s severity and sincerity–for everyone and everything. Even my anger at “the powers that be” has left me. It also made me realize how scared I actually was. I have been on a lifelong search for love, but it scares the heck out of me, and it always has. For to love, you become vulnerable to that person–the absence of their love can hurt you. Death is an old family friend, and he comes often for a visit. Because this is what I know, my impatience to start living the “happily ever after, ” is expounded! So I have the impatience, but I am terrified of loving someone, so I don’t actually tell them, but then I have ridiculous expectations in which they must live up to. *Sigh* I had no idea I was so confusing, lbvs!

The moral of the story is….sometimes adventures are weird from the get go. Itchy-O = Weird, Meow Wolf = Weird. Itchy-0 + Meow Wolf = Best Weirdness of Your Life!! And sometimes beauty is born out of that weirdness…life-altering beauty.

I had such an amazing trip, and I strongly suggest visiting Meow Wolf and witnessing Itchy-O live. It will be something you cannot forget.

 

The Next Installment of More Funky 80’s Movies I Love!!

This is the third installment of my 80’s movies list. I am done trying to put them in some semblance of order, hahaha! It drives me bonkers trying to decide which ones should be on this list, and which ones belong on the next list. Ahhh! I love them all!!! So without further ado, here is a short list including some more of the greatest movies the 1980’s had to offer!! (Please note that I know that there are a whole lot more….and if I had to actually put them in order of favorite-least, some movies that will appear on later lists definitely rank higher!! This is hard! Hahaha!)

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  • Back to the Future 1985

How could you not love this movie?? The whole idea of being able to travel back in time isback a wonderful concept! Except going back into the time that your parents met and inadvertently messing up their meeting…that gets a little dicey! Not to mention horribly uncomfortable when your mom suddenly has a crush on you!! However, in trying so hard to get his parents together in the past, Marty McFly made his parent’s life so much better!! My BFF recently told me that she loves watching movies with me, because I get so invested in them, hahaha! I gasp, yell, and worry about the fates of the characters. This one was an awesome movie for that. I mean, Marty’s very existence depended on whether or not he could get his parents back together!!

I love the actors in these movies! Christopher Lloyd is absolutely amazing! (My favorite character of his? Uncle Fester of course!!) And Lea Thompson is just the cutest! (My favorite of her roles to be seen later on this list!) And Michael J Fox….what a fox!!! I was a fan of Family Ties, and I had always thought that he was so handsome!!Lorraine-Baines-back-to-the-future-30606157-627-746

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  • Back to the Future Part II 1989

Out of the three (and since this is an 80’s list, part III will not be on any of these lists), 1back_to_the_future_part_2_1989_685x385Part II is my favorite! I loved the future they portrayed! I will admit that seeing as that date has officially passed, and 10-21-2015 is definitely not as cool in real life, watching the movie now makes me a little sad, hahaha! If you read my post about that day, then you know that I am thankful that we do NOT have flying cars! Hahaha! We cannot be trusted! But the big disappointment is 3D movie technology! Man….I would love to see Jaws like that!BTTF_1

When they go back into their present time in 1985 and everything is different and chaotic and horrible…this is where my little movie heart went wild! How can they fix this? What happened? Biff now runs the whole town? And he is that big of an obsessive lug-head that he used his fortune and power to kill George so that he could marry Lorraine? Well, thank goodness he waited until after the kids were all born! It was definitely a nail-biter moment for me!Lorraine-1985A

Then, he has to go back to 1955 to fix this screw-up?? Holy Cow!! That ending though!!! Love it!!

PS Little Elijah Wood!!! Love it!!

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  • Batman 1989

This was the first superhero movie that I really enjoyed. First of all, three of my most batmanfavorite people are affiliated with this movie–Michael Keaton (Beetlejuice), Jack Nicholson (I just love him!!!), and Tim Burton (My all time favorite director!!). As with most of Tim Burton’s movies, this one had a dark tone and crazy emphatic music, with a nice splash of humor that seems to lighten the mood of his darkest movies! In my personal opinion, Michael Keaton is my favorite Batman, and Jack Nicholson is my favorite Joker. Why? Their face! Literally, that is what I like the most about them. Michael Keaton’s face is humorous without him even trying. I feel this helped the role, because Batman is such a dark dark hero anyway! I mean, he watched his parents be murdered, that can mess a person up! (You think?) I feel as if Keaton kept the character dark without taking it over into the edge of the abyss. You could tell he was batman-03pretty solitary, but he still had charm. Bruce Wayne was still approachable! Not all Christian Gray like Christian Bale made him seem. And Nicholson….with that incredibly sexy and sinister smile…oooh boy! He was certifiably crazy and creepy! Love this movie so much!!

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  • Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark 1981

LOVE this movie!!! This was the introduction into the non-stop-adventure world of 000625_37Indiana Jones! What was a professor of archaeology doing being a treasure-seeking fiend? I don’t know, but I love him for it! The opening scene to this movie is so iconic and so epic…from the sweat-inducing chore of attempting to settle the balance between the golden statue and a bag of sand all the way to being chased by a giant boulder…classic!! And of course, his battle against the Nazi’s and their pursuit of the Ark of the Covenant. A splash of romance and the unlikely hero that this professor must become in order to save this beautiful woman…wonderful! My other favorite scene would have to be the ending, of course, when the Nazi’s are idiotic enough to open the Ark, and everyone who is watching has their faces melted off!!

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  • Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom 1984

This one is my personal favorite…probably because I thought that Willie was so pretty, had a wonderful singing voice, and the plot involved the rescuing of hundreds of little children! I also loved Short Round! Why wasn’t he in the other movies? Indy meets Willie in Shanghai, and Lao, a crime boss, attempts to murder him with poison. Willie finds the antidote, and subsequently gets both rescued and abducted by Indy, in his attempt to live. With the help of that trusty 11 year old, they all manage to escape with their lives…only to have them all put into danger again when the board a plane owned by Lao! The real part of this story begins once they enter Mayapore and are entrusted templeofdoom001to find the sacred stone of the Shivalinga, and all of their children! Pankot Palace may sound nice, but they all find out that that is not the case!

My favorite scene is still the dinner scene! I would not eat a single thing! Live baby snakes? Giant bugs? Soup with eyeballs?!! And, the family favorite, chilled monkey brains for dessert? I honestly think my brother, father, and I will eventually get that tattooed one of these days, as our family thing, hahahaha!

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  • Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade 1989

How can you not like a movie with Sean Connery in it?

In this one, we are takenIndiana-Jones-and-the-Last-Crusade-River-Phoenix-snakes back to Indy’s youth, (played by the most amazing River Phoenix, RIP), and discover how he fell into his life as the Indiana Jones. Catching some thievery in the act, Indy attempts to save the artifact because it, “belongs in a museum!” On a train full of circus animals, we discover how Indy came upon some of his more amusing quirks–like why he hates snakes! Or how he came upon the whip–yeah, lion taming will make you want to be very proficient in the whip wielding department! Lastly, we know where he got his hat.images

Another fantastic discovery–his relationship with his father–who also happens to be single-minded, focused, and obsessed with an ancient artifact…the holy grail! Again, Indy must fight Nazi’s in order to keep his father out of their hands!

My favorite scene is the ending…how Indy had to go through the trials and find the holy grail in order to save his father. Good thing old dad was so obsessive! Those trials were horrendous!

Also, I’m not sure how many of you have seen the old VHS versions…but there are some awesome commercials on those things!! Cue the opening music!!

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  • Ghostbusters 1984

Probably one of the greatest movies of all time!! The amazing comedic duo of Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd, both unforgettable members of Saturday Night Live, ghostbusters-image-100294come together to fight a beastie that everyone fears at least a little! Is your slumber troubled by bumps in the night? Who are you gonna call? The Ghostbusters, of course! Now, I do believe in ghosts…we have lived in some rather freaky places (for example, the house of a man who allegedly molested children and hid their bodies in the walls in the basement), so seeing this movie gave me an insane sense of hope. What I especially like is 50d47930afa96f7551000017imagesthat the process for getting rid of the ghosts has nothing to do with religion, and everything to do with science!! Now, don’t get me wrong, I am not anti-religion! It’s just that if the ridding of ghosts depended on my faith, then I would be ghostbusters_neutrino_wandterrified! But with science, well, that makes it a little easier. I do not need a strong faith basis to follow directions! Okay, point this this towards ghost, don’t cross the streams, move ghost towards trap, close the trap! Got it!!

Loved the “big bad” in this movie…secret cult, haunted apartment, people turning into dogs, and a giant Stay Puff Marshmallow Man!! So funny, some pretty dang scary scenes, and toasted marshmallow for dessert!

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  • Ghostbusters II 1989

The four unlikely heroes are back. Unfortunately, the city of New York was not as il_570xN.457881180_rgobgrateful as they should have been when they saved the entire city (and caused massive amounts of damage) just a short time ago. They are no longer in favor, and they have basically gone in their own directions. However, the return of Dana Barrett has brought them a new case. It seems as if her new little baby, Oscar, is being pursued by malevolent pink slime! What do they do? Where is it coming from? Oh, that creepy dude in the painting that is hanging up in the museum where Dana works? Oh, yup.

Ghostbusters22What I liked a lot about this movie was that it kind of played on the fallbacks of New York. The city is kind of known for both for being mean and for being indifferent. And it is this attitude that feeds the malevolent pink slime that is flowing in an old transient system underneath the city. Thankfully, though, the slime can be reprogrammed. What does it need? A little sweet talking and some awesome music!!

The best part? Saving the city again…this time with the Statue of Liberty!!!ghostbusters-ii-statue-of-liberty

10-21-2015…Is it What You Expected Marty McFly??

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As most of you should know, today is the day that Marty McFly arrived in the “future” to save his son from a harrowing fate!

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How do we measure up?

I will admit that I am not the best person to write about this particular subject, because, although I love the movie, I know VERY LITTLE about technological advances, haha! So this is definitely from the persepctive of a small-town girl comparing her own world to that of Marty McFly in 1985’s Back to the Future Part II.

Not so much with the flying cars, but like my buddy and I were just discussing, I do not believe people as a whole are stellar drivers with all four wheels on the ground, let alone flying en masse in the air!!

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However, we have made HUGE strides in getting away from fuel! Electric cars, cars that run on vegetable oil….we’re getting there.

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3D movies…well ours aren’t that cool! I work as a projectionist, and we mainly play 3D movies…and they have come a long way….but still not that cool! However, I do like that Jaws was relevant this year, what with it being the 30th anniversary and all.

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We do not, (thank goodness), have computerized self-adjusting clothing. But I did hear that Nike was trying to come out with self-tying shoes!

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This is how his "self-adjusting" jacket actually worked, haha!

This is how his “self-adjusting” jacket actually worked, haha!

And I still think their style is a lot cooler!!

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We do have hoverboards! But they are pretty exclusive, and from what I understand, you have to have metal flooring.

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We do have games that do not require the use of your hands! But even the Wii and Xbox can go a little bit further…

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We have phones in glasses. Again, not that popular.

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We do have dehydrators/rehydrators…not that cool…

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Teleconferencing–totally have that! And you do not even need a TV!

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We do not all have fax machines in our homes, though. I imagine it would be a lot harder to hide a piece of paper “yelling” that, “You’re Fired!!”, rather than an email like we would get.

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Tablets are a thing, and so are digital signatures.

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Thumbprint identification is also a thing…although I am still glad that we do not have these instead of doorknobs. And I did find this picture during my search, and it has the auto-dog-walker and super glow-in-the-dark paint on the sidewalks. The dog-walker is pure laziness, but the paint would be awesome! Just soak in the sun all day, and shine brightly at night? Sweet!

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Personally, I cannot wait for this thing:

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I loved that movie then, I still love that movie now. Although Spielberg and Zemeckis may have dreamed a little too wildly, I believe that their dreams helped shape the directions of the dreams that led us to today.

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Carpe Adventure: Let’s Take A TripLip Down Memory Lane…Sometimes Adventure Involves Amazing Hair

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from their FB

The first time I saw the current members of TripLip, Kevin and Pat, they were members of a different band, and they were playing at the Kacey Jones Pavilion in our little hometown. These boys were still in high school, and I…well I was not, hahaha! But I could already see the budding talent.

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Several years later, I saw them again, just the two of them, and they were jamming under the name of Judge DDrugs. Thistriplip001 time, I really paid attention! We were at a dive bar, fondly dubbed BarBar (probably not the name of the bar now) in Downtown Denver, Colorado. Instantly I was intrigued as these two oddly handsome fellows with AMAZING hair, took the “stage” (which was on the same level as everyone else–basically they took the corner of the room); one picking up a bass, the other climbing behind the set of drums. Before this, I had only ever seen one other band with this set up–a bass and some drums–and that was Red VS Black, another infamous group in my small town. Clay, the bassist for Red VS Black, was the first one to really make me take notice of the bass as an integral part of a band (as I mentioned in the blog about Facial)–I was honestly and superficially amazingly impressed by Clay’s arm muscles; takes a lot to play a bass that well and thoroughly, hahaha! (The drummer for Red VS Black is pictured above as the drummer for Pat and Kevin’s previous band. His name is Sam Tallent, and he is an accomplished comedian. Definitely look him up–he has even worked with the amazing T.J. Miller!)

But with Judge DDrugs, aka TripLip, it was the hair I noticed first, hahaha! This “experimental progressive” rock band was sporting some locks that would make Brett Michaels jealous! And I was in love, hahaha!!

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I am now a full-fledged fan, but I still have the boy-band-groupie love that revolves solely around their hair! I cannot explain enough how upset I was when Pat cut his off, hahaha!!triplip025 triplip023 triplip015

I have known them as TripLip for longer than Judge DDrugs, and I have seen TripLip play many times. In fact, when my photo gathering for this blog started to head towards triplip040, I had to back off. These two are my absolute favorite band members to photograph (again, because of the hair, hahaha!). Also, the faces that they make. Even if this is not the type of music that you enjoy listening to, I guarantee that you will totally enjoy watching them!!

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triplip019Pat is the man to know when it comes to going anywhere musically. He has been thetriplip021 frontrunner in every Mile High Festibowl–the main guy who sets up the locations, sets up the bands….he is just phenomenal. He is also a really nice guy! He has personally made me feel so special and needed at his shows. Although he is capable of playing other instruments, I really love watching him on the drums. No matter what band he is playing in (there happens to be quite a few), from heavy metal, or experimental progressive, to surf rock, to a little bit of a Macklemore vibe (sorry Preston, hahaha! I know you dislike that reference), he is crazy good! Pat is consistently maintaining a connection with both the fans and his fellow band mates. Pat lets you know that he sees you, and he appreciates that you are there. And he is an outstanding drummer! He puts his all into drumming–forces you to notice that he is there, hahaha! You never forget about the drummer when he is around! And he makes the best faces ever!!!triplip006triplip022

Kevin….what can I say about Kevin….hahaha! Just kidding! I would call Kevin “the Mouth!!” Not triplip028only does he possess one of the biggest orifices that I have ever seen, he is also super loud!! Kevin is always in the triplip027crowd while the other bands are playing, and one can easily hear his “Yip! Yip!” above any noise, as he shows his support for his fellow musicians. He is also in the crowd while playing, hahaha. He has a really long cord and super supportive fans who never let him get tangled. In addition to being a bassist, Kevin is also the lead singer. Yes, most of the lyrics are screamed at you, but he has such an interesting and identifiable voice, you can’t help but enjoy it. And his bass skills….I will really dive into it in a later post, but I recently went to a TripLip concert at the Lion’s Lair on the 17th, and, unfortunately, Pat could not attend. Instead of cancelling the show, Kevin decided to do it solo. Honestly, I was like, “Really? How is a bassist alone going to entertain this crowd?” Man, did he make me feel guilty for even doubting him!! Keven went up there with a bass and a looper pedal (unsure if that was the technical term for that particular piece of equipment, I’m mainly a photographer, hahaha!), and blew my effing mind!! This guy had the entire audience enthralled. He didn’t sing or anything like that; he just played every inch of that instrument–strumming, plucking. taking a tour of the entire neck of the thing–forearm muscles moving and bulging and veining the whole way. This huge-mouthed, loud, long-haired rebel is a beast on that thing! Truly talented!

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from their FB

TripLip just got back from a national tour. Sure, they packed a bunch of dudes in a van, as opposed to a spiffy tour-bus, but they still received great reviews and got to play with some sweet bands–like Daikaiju (so amazing!), Giraffes? Giraffes! (so talented!), Snail Mate (just saw them and I love them!), Lucida Tella (awesome), and many many more–from Colorado to Louisiana to Buffalo, New York, these boys have been all over!!

Richard Ingersoll, a former member of Cosmic Sound Child (mentioned in Facial), is a phenomenal guitarist and an absolutely jaw-dropping and awe-inspiring artist, sometimes joins the two for shows here in Colorado, and on tour.

from their FB, with Richard

from their FB, with Richard

Recently, TripLip has begun to wear masks during their performances, but due to an unfortunate accident with my harddrive, pictures for these amazing occasions are not available. But I do have several videos, the link to one of which, is listed below.

I strongly suggest to never limit your musical tastes, or let appearances detour you from attending an event, because you could miss out on some phenomenal talent! Again, I was a boy-bander. Pop music is my thing. Slowly, rock filtered in during high school, then a little rap and R&B. But it was not until I was 21 that my musical tastes exploded! If you would have asked me at 15 if I would go to a punk concert, the answer would have been a huge N-O. But my “brothers” needed a ride to Antiflag and The Casualties, and I was it. I treasure that concert because it brought me to where I am now–surrounded by a vast array of amazingly talented musicians. I can now say I love punk, math rock, surf rock, screamo, emo, and even a bit of dubstep (Shout out to DJ Thumper and DeadHand!!!). Carpe Adventure, people. And the very best thing? The people. Those dirty, scrouty punks are the best. They will pick you up when you fall, they will accept you as you are, if you are good to them they will go out of their way to be good to you….let’s just say that, if you get kicked out of a punk concert, you 100% deserve it, because you are a….jerk, yeah, let’s go with that, hahaha, a JERK! I mean, I still listen to “horrible music” on my own time, I rarely rock anything of these bands when they’re not in front of my face, but I find I am hard-pressed to turn down a TripLip concert!!! Good people, good vibe, good music, talented artists, and very very entertaining performance!

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So keep an eye out for TripLip!! They very well could be playing at a dive near you sometime soon!!

Watch their YouTube video, TripLip at Pho Cao: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0E7YZon9sc

Listen to their album: http://triplipdenver.bandcamp.com/

Check out their Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TripLip-160031120718417

To check out their masked look, here is a decent video I shot (I am short and pliable, so it is shaky, hahaha!) at the Armory, Festibowl 2015: https://www.facebook.com/rachel.campbell.71271/videos/1132047610155001/

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from their FB

*all other photos were taken by me! 🙂

Understanding Anne Frank: Be the Change

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“Be the change you wish to see in the world” is actually a quote from Gandhi, but it’s a sentiment that I think Anne would have agreed with.  Perhaps she didn’t know it at the time but the words she was writing in her diary were destined to improve the world.  She was living the principles she was writing about and was providing an example for generations to come of how to grow up, how to think for yourself and how to become the person you wish to be.  She was constantly evaluating herself, constantly being honest about her faults and constantly striving to do better.

Though the changes that the average person makes to themselves and their circle of influence may not become as well known and influential as Anne’s has, every little change adds up and slowly but surely things change for the better.  Anne herself had no idea the impact her words would have, she was simply trying to be the best she could under mundane, tense circumstances.

I would build upon Anne’s words and say that every moment is a new chance to change the world and that is why you don’t need to wait but also you shouldn’t wait!  There are no words to describe the sense of personal power and pride that comes from real and honest effort to better yourself.

Bettering yourself is the first and best way to better the world!  It is impossible to spread joy or kindness to others if you don’t feel that way yourself.  So take care of yourself and then spread that to all the people in your sphere from loved ones, to co-workers to strangers and you will be amazed at the changes you can make in the world!

Understanding Anne: Words of Wisdom from Anne Frank Part One

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I have read the Diary of Anne Frank several times throughout my life and each time something new jumps out at me as being so wise.  I remember the first time I read it was in school, while I was right around the same age she was.

The wisdom that stayed with me from this first reading, was the part where she talks about the difference in perspective between her and her mother.  Her mother believed that you should be aware of how bad it could be and is not and be happy that you are being spared for the moment.  While Anne herself thought you should look at how beautiful the world is and be happy that things are so good.

I remember thinking at the time that they were both right and you should do both things.  Be grateful that your world is so beautiful and be aware that it could be much worse.

It made me sad at the time, that Anne had such a difficult relationship with her mother, when both of them had very valid viewpoints.  I wished so much that they could have seen the wisdom in the other and in that way have grown closer.

I will say that seeing the issues that drove these two women apart, helped me in my own life to avoid the anger and hurt that many teens feel toward their parents and my mother and I formed a relationship during my teen years that provided a wonderful foundation for the extremely close bond we still share.

This post is the first in a series that I am going to do on all the many insights and wisdoms to be found in Anne Franks Diary.  She was a gift to the world during an extremely dark time and I can’t help but think that she would have been proud that she achieved her fondest desire; to go on living in the world’s memory long after her death.