Wednesday, June 15, 2016

I'm Being Censored | YouTube's War Against Vegans

I usually do not post videos here - but this is important and needs to be addressed. This is a good example of how meat-eaters and other animal torturers bully vegans and try to keep us silent. We refuse to be kept silent.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

About second, third, and fourth chances

Today, Kevin Simm was voted as the winner of the Voice UK - and I personally am rather happy about this, because he had been my favourite from the start (just because I like Boy George as the artist he is, does not mean that I have to support everything he does/likes/supports. I am my own person, not a mindless follower).

Some people became quite mean about Kevin, because he already had his time in the limelight (but as the coaches said, when Kevin was in the band, nobody ever heard what a fantastic voice he has). It made me feel quite sad. This attitude, I mean. I started wondering whether the people who said Kevin did not deserve another chance, ever needed a second or third chance in their lives. Where would most of us be in life if we never had any second, third, etc. chances?

Look at your life. Would it be a good life if you only ever had one chance at everything? And what if you messed up your first chance? Or if other people kept you from being successful the first or second time around? Would you not want another chance? Would you not want to fight for your dream? If you gave up the first time you failed, then maybe it was not the right dream for you to begin with. Yes, some of the other people in the Voice have talent - but if losing keeps them from following their dreams, then they simply are not made for this particular dream.

I know from my own life that some first chances I messed up - or never got so far. One of my teachers once told me that I'd never be able to translate books if I did not have a university degree in translation. I quit university because I followed a dream. Years later, I dared to apply for ONE translation job of a book. Funnily, the book was about following your dreams, and doing what you love. I got the job. Without a translation degree. Right now, someone I translated for before asked me to do another book, and a book of his friend, too. Guess my teacher was wrong about me never getting a first chance. I am sure some of you will have a similar story about a dream - about people who did not believe in you, and you managed to prove them wrong.

My biggest dream is to be able to write my own books. But I was always scared of not being good enough, of nobody ever wanting to read what I write. I guess that's why I was translating other people's works, and writing in other people's names. I did not want to mess my own stuff up (and at the same time other people PAID me for writing). The last few weeks, and Kevin's success in a way, showed me that we ALL deserve chances when it comes to our dreams. But in the end, we are the ones who have to believe. People can support you, but if you do not believe in your dream, nobody else will.

Don't hate other people because they get a second chance. Ask yourself why you hate them for it.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Stuck in the past? People do change - even famous ones like Boy George!

Today, I got a bit annoyed because I read a few comments on Facebook about how Boy George's voice changed and that he should call it quits. They said something along the lines of him just not being the same any longer. Oh, guess what? He's gotten older, and in my personal opinion, better. It's not 1982 any longer. I was born in 1983, 33 years ago. I am not the same person I was in 1983. Or in 1993. Neither were you. No matter what your age is now, you are NOT the same as when you were 10, 20, 30, etc. years old.

One fact: PEOPLE CHANGE. Every single one of us changes. If you can't admit that, then you have a serious problem. It's not only our characters that change, but also our voices. People need to stop expecting that people like Boy George never change. Do you want him to only sing "Karma Chameleon" and "Do you really want to hurt me?" all the time? If yes, go, buy those records, put the videos on repeat on YouTube, and just keep your negativity about his development to yourselves. There are so many artists out there - I am sure one of them will be just the way you like them to be - but not forever. Wouldn't it be nicer to support those artists, tell them you like them? Tell them something positive, and spend your time on the positive things, instead of going around on Facebook groups of artists you do not like any longer?

I, for one, have only recently become interested in Boy George (I wrote about that here - so I won't repeat myself). If he hadn't change, if he'd still be stuck in an endless loop of Karma Chameleons, I probably wouldn't have wanted to learn more about him. I absolutely LOVE his current voice. The changes that happened in his life are actually the reason why I find him inspiring. I don't like every single song of his, I don't even know all of them - but I don't go onto the YouTube channels and write "I don't like this." on the songs and videos I do not like. And other people actually become so impolite and horrible when they comment about something they do not like. Why is that so? Why do they focus so much energy on the negative? I can't imagine going to the videos of artists I do not like, and abuse them verbally.

If you look at your own life, do you not see how you have developed over time? Why does it seem like many people do not give the same right to famous people? Why are they not allowed to change?

When I listened to Boy George CDs released in later years, I went "What? THIS is Boy George?" I was positively surprised. Amazed even. I love him the way he's now. I also love some of his older stuff (especially when he sings it with his current voice!) And there are plenty others who love his voice. Let us enjoy him. Stop hating changes. For some people, the changes in other people's life can be very inspiring and helpful.

George showed me, indirectly as I've never talked to him (now, that would be an amazing experience), that you can hit the bottom, get everything wrong, and then get things right, and become even better than before. Changes like that are wonderful. They give people hope.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Some dreams come true faster than you expect - A post about Boy George

Oh yes, it's partially about Boy George. Accept it and read on, or leave. It is up to you. I'm mainly writing this for myself, because writing helps me. You have been warned. This post might at some stage just turn into "Oh my god, I just don't believe it" nonsense.

 Less than one and a half months have passed since I wrote about Boy George, and how he randomly turned up in my life (and dreams). I have listened to a lot of his music since then, and learned more about his life. I'm not finished yet - there's a lot to catch up on. On one hand, I feel sad that I missed his tours and shows - on the other hand, I'm glad that he turned up when he did. It was a rather dark time in my life - still partially is, because life is not easy at the moment, and not one person around me actually notices or cares. I was close to giving up on many of my dreams. I did not write anything, apart from one or the other freelance job to get some money in. And that kind of writing isn't really what I want to do. With every piece I write in someone else's name, about something could care less about, I lose part of my soul.

Then, as described in my other post, Boy George happened. I watched a variety of videos on YouTube, mainly ones from the later part of his music career. Of course, he was incredibly cute when he was younger (and now he's absolutely gorgeous), but his more current voice is the one that seems to have a direct connection to my heart. He also seems to be more the kind of person I would get along with now. Maybe. I have no idea - it's not like I'd ever get the chance to find out. My ideas about him might be totally wrong.

If any of you read my last blog about him, you might remember that I thought about writing a letter to him - I actually did, and enjoyed the process. Though I have no idea whether the letter ever arrived, or whether I even used the right address. But at least I did something I wanted to do, no matter how pointless it seemed to be in other people's eyes. Who cares? It made me feel happier, so it was a good thing to do. Simple as that.

Boy George has a rather interesting effect on me. A certain performance I saw on YouTube made me cry because his voice in that performance was so loaded with emotions, and combined with the way his eyes looked in that video, it was just too beautiful. One of my thoughts was that if I ever saw such a performance live, I'd probably die. After all, how wonderful must his voice sound without being put through so many different channels (e.g. being recorded, then being sent to the internet, and so on)? I don't know much about the science behind sound, but I am sure live would sound even better. Not many people know this, but for some reason certain voices just have a magical effect on me. Boy George has one of those voices - not only when he sings, but also when he talks.

Basically, he gives me hope that you can pick up the pieces again after you have fallen and almost broke completely. And sometimes, you can become better than you have been before your fall. I was wondering whether he'd have the same effect on me in real life, what it would be like to see him in person. Of course, getting to talk to him without other people around would be like a dream - but I am realistic enough to know that there are SOME dreams that are just absolutely impossible. Talking to Boy George outside of dreams is one of them.
Interestingly enough, fate seems to be on my side this time. It looks like I will get to see Boy George on a talk show tomorrow. I'll be in the audience, but I never expected that just on THAT date, HE of all people would be there. When I found out about it, I didn't need coffee for the rest of the day. I still can't believe it. It's tomorrow! It's very unlikely that he'll sing, but starting step by step is probably a good idea. I'm not yet ready for a death via Boy George's voice. I'll get to hear him talk live though. It's unbelievable! So, one of my dreams (the most recent one) actually is about to come true.

The problem is that I am not even sure whether I can call myself a fan. I couldn't see myself as someone standing at a concert, just screaming. I would only want to listen to George's voice. How can people enjoy the quality he delivers when they just scream and screech? There is a place for cheering, of course, but.... if you go to a concert, don't you go to enjoy the music?
Then there are the people who've been following Boy George since I was born (1983). The people who have huge collections and can probably tell you what he did on which day. I am not one of them. Will never be. To me, my appreciation of artists is quite different. Yes, I bought some of his CDs, and am thinking about printing one of my favourite photos of him as a poster to put next to my writing space. I never liked the word fan. Even when I was a Michael Jackson fan, I never liked the word fan to describe my love/admiration for something or someone.

Enough of this now. You've been warned, it's a rather unstructured piece of writing.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

The importance of role models in my life

Most of us do have role models in our life. For some of us, they are members of our family. For some of us our biggest role model is one of our friends. For some of us, the biggest role models are famous people from various careers. Then there are people who claim to not have any role model - but that is a different story.

To me, my role models were mainly people from the world of music and acting. I simply had nobody in my family who was suitable as a person to look up to. There were alcoholics and people who stood by, doing nothing. As a young kid, my escape was the world of music, books, and TV. In there, I found people who had courage, who were well-spoken, encouraging, creative, and in a way always there for me.

The first two important role models who entered my life were Captain Jean-Luc Picard, portrayed by the fantastic Patrick Stewart, and Michael Jackson. Jean-Luc Picard was someone I wished to be my father - and you have to admit the man makes a rather good role-model with his ethics on the show. Sure, he did not like kids, but I always hoped he'd like me. I was too young to understand that the man did not really exist. I also believed that Michael Jackson would one day walk into my life and get me out of there. Hence I started learning English at a very young age, teaching myself with the help of music.

The next big influence came in the form of the warrior princess Xena. I was older then, and understood the difference between reality and fantasy a lot better (but I still hadn't given up on the idea that I would one day meet Michael Jackson). I loved the show, and Xena was a good role model - she was a strong woman in a world dominated by men.

When I got older, I also started to admire Lucy Lawless, the actress behind Xena, for her activism, her care for the planet, and her general attitude. I was lucky enough to see her live twice. What Xena taught me was that you could get through everything, and that even with a lot of darkness in your past, you can still become successful and change your life around.

Then Ian McKellen was added to the mix. I initially refused to watch Lord of the Rings because I loved the books, and was sure nobody but Patrick Stewart could be Gandalf. I just thought the movies would be horrible. Fortunately, I was wrong - and became interested in learning more about Ian McKellen. How lovely it was to see how he and Patrick Stewart became such good friends over time!

The latest two additions to my list of inspiring people were Darren Hayes (I have written about him here) and Boy George (I have recently written about him here). Both of them came into my life at times during which I needed motivation and inspiration that nobody in my immediate surroundings was and is able to give me.

While there are also others I like a lot, and who play a role in my life, the above mentioned people seem to have entered my life at very important times. They all had and still have important messages and lessons to me. They - unintentionally - helped me a lot in my life. Some of those people I have met, some I have not (yet) met or seen live. Michael Jackson I never got to see (because my mother did not allow me to go to the only concert I could've seen - just half an hour away by train). However, I got to see a fantastic tribute artist called Kenny Wizz (and unlike Michael, he actually sang everything LIVE) - who also came into my life at a time during which I needed motivation.

Some might call it coincidence, but I am not so sure about it. Those people all came into my life when I needed someone exactly like them. I do not think that the appearance of Boy George in my life is totally random (though it might seem to from the outside). After all, the man has been around for decades. He could've become of interest to me at any other time in my life - so why now? What can I learn from him? Persistence? Another lesson of how you can get up again after going through some tough shit?

Did some role models come into your life just when you needed them? If yes, who were they and what did they teach you?