Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Real Good E-mail.

There are some things that stress me media in general is one of them.  E-mail is another.  E-mail didn't stress me out...until I got a job as an event planner and now instead of leaving my work at work it HAUNTS me when I check my e-mail.  So when I go to check my e-mail I always scan past the work/school/stress related e-mails to the fun ones.

And who sends the very best e-mails? My parents! Yes I am not ashamed to admit this, while they would fail miserably at a hilarious facebook wall post they excel at making e-mail fun again.  (Since nobody really e-mails each other for fun anymore anyways...that's what a facebook message is for)

My mom forwards the funny pictures of animals, the latest and greatest nutritional fads, and occasionally we write novels to each other when we're just having one of those weeks where ranting needs to happen DAILY. (Or...well maybe 5 times daily...)

My dad on the other hand is not quite the constant e-mailer that my mom is.  So I always know its going to be a gem when I see an e-mail from him.  It is usually something about fitness.  But only the really cool fitness stuff (Articles about Bode Miller and Scott Jurek are frequent topics. If only I could be that bad ass).  The latest was no exception, he sent me this article Born to be A Trail Runner, from one of my favorite authors Christopher McDougall who wrote the book Born to Run.

This article could not have come at a better time.  I needed a lil' kick in the butt to get running again, and remember why I love running.

The article Born to be A Trail Runner, talks about these crazy trail runners who just go out and run.  No timers, no excuses, no bragging about qualifying for Boston, no perfect training schedules and eating habits, just running.  I realized that's the kind of fitness/healthy lifestyle freak that I am.  (Just a little less intense on the mileage than them...and when I say a little I mean A LOT).  I run for fun- not to qualify for the Boston marathon for bragging rights.

After reading the article I was motivated.  Not to run a marathon, not to PR in a half marathon, not to sign up for a 5k.  Nope.  I was inspired just to run. As much as possible. No matter the distance.  No matter the weather, no matter the speed just run.  Why? Because I love it.  It was time to stop stressing about why slow runs were slow and why bad runs were bad and stop making up lame excuses of why I couldn't go for a run.  I needed to remember how just plain old running = happy Claire.

And BOY did I pick a great week to start this.  Minnesota weather decided to test my will power to rediscover running like no other!  Tuesday I woke up to rain, and ended up having a lovely 5 mile run in the rain.  Wednesday I woke up to a blizzard and ended up having one of the slowest hardest runs of my life (no matter that it was only 3 miles).   Turned out the weather was always worse in my head and I didn't really care about the mileage, because after every run this week I was happy.  It feels real good to love running again :)

So maybe someday I'll be out there with the most bad ass of them running trail ultra marathons that nobody knows about or needs to qualify for (I can only hope!) or maybe I'll never graduate from 13.1 miles.  Either way I'm still a runner for life, and am happy to say I am officially over feeling pressured to be a perfect health conscious super runner. 

Thanks Dad for a real good e-mail.  I bet you didn't know it would spawn an entire fitness revelation!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Current Music Obsession: Miike Snow, Animal

The song sounds good to my ears, the lyrics apply to my life and thoughts. I'd say that's a win win. Enjoy...


Animal- Mike Snow

I change shapes just to hide in this place but i'm still, i'm still an animal.

There was a time when my world was filled with darkness, darkness darkness.
Then I stopped dreaming, now i'm supposed to fill it up with something, something, something.

In your eyes I see the eyes of somebody I knew before, long long, long ago.
But I'm still trying to make my mind up, am I free or am I tied up?

I change shapes just to hide in this place, but I'm still, I'm still an animal.
Nobody knows it but me when I slip, yeah I slip, I'm still an animal.

There is a hole and I tried to fill it up with money, money, money.
But it gets bigger to your hopes, it's always running, running, running.

In your eyes I see the eyes of somebody who could be strong, tell me if i'm wrong.
Now i'm pulling your disguise up. Are you free or are you tied up?

I change shapes just to hide in this place, but I'm still, I'm still an animal.
Nobody knows it but me when I slip, yeah I slip, I'm still an animal.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Georgia's Got Skills

Georgia O'Keefe Sky Above Clouds

View From the plane on the way home from Austin

I'd say Georgia did a pretty good job.

SXSW Going Green?

Whaaat ooooh what could it be?

Was that a yo-yo??!

My favorite piece...

It's SWAAAAAG. StuffWeAllGet. Catch that Office reference?

SXSW supposedly went green this year...but I still got all this swag and I even adamantly rejected pieces of paper.  For some reason I ended up shoving all this stuff into my bursting suitcase and bringing it home. 

SXSW didn't give out a huge swag bag when you picked up your badge at check in this year, which makes a big difference. But the whole idea of a massive festival "going green" is kind of funny to me, since having a massive conference that draws a ton of people from all over the world is about the least "green" thing you can do.  Think of all the flights, gas, electricity for the bands, packaging for all the fast food consumed...etc. etc. etc.

Even though SXSW went green, the bands/companies/anyone trying to market themselves did not.  If you were walking around anywhere on 6th street in Austin during SXSW (the main drag of concert venues) there were plenty of paper/cds/juuuunk shoved at you.

And posters literally covered every possible surface.

This swag bag proves one thing for sure, although it seems like internet, social media, and electronics are taking over...

Print's not dead...or at least not yet ;)

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Trending: Hipster Style at SXSW

SXSW can best be described as a mob scene of music obsessed trendy hipsters.  I have to admit I love Urban Outfitters, American Apparel, anything with a vintage look, and thrifting so I suppose you could call me a hipster.  But I don't think I'm fashionable enough since lately a mixture of Target and Forever21 finds have been the only additions to my closet...and I probably wear leggings a little too often. 

Everybody looked about the same at SXSW like they came straight out of an Urban Outfitters catalog, only drunker and dirtier.  So here are the trends I noticed, for better or for worse.

If you're a guy and want to be hipster, it's pretty easy.  You can go all out and get into the specifics of guy hipster fashion (tight black jeans, tailored button-up, skinny tie, etc. etc.)...or you can wake up, skip your shower, grab your knock-off Ray-Bans, and put on a plaid shirt.

Us ladies don't have it so easy...but we do get to have some more fun.

We get...


Floral Patterns

Maxi Dresses


So what are my must haves for summer? A long black and white striped maxi dress and a floppy hat.  Lately I've been migrating away from the loud prints I was obsessed with in High School and towards neutral colored, flowy, minimalist kind of look.

Not that I'm a hipster or anything like that...heaven forbid ;)

What are your must haves for summer fashion?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Lessons Learned: Austin/SXSW edition.

Do I look famous? I wish.

1. It's windy.

(which is probably why my head feels like a storm of fog has moved in...dislike my sinuses)

2. Traffic is always bad.  Which means lots of time for me to play with the settings on my camera while we wait for the transit.


Just Cheesin'


3. Social media and branding are everything.  The sessions LOVE to talk about this, I will defintiely be getting a twitter after this trip.  Decided it was time to get over myself and start tweetin'.

5.  I will doodle.  No matter how interesting a session is though, I will still doddle throughout the entire session...just like in class.  But at the Trade Show I talked to a guy, who is totally legit since he has his own booth at SXSW, and he made a business out of his doodles.  I feel an end coming to the never ending existential crisis I have been in since I started college! (Oh and my addiction to coffee is still going strong here)

6. Smart phones rule.  Seriously I feel so out of the loop with my little red LG flip phone...everyone here is all about apps, tweetin' and everything internet.

7. Stay Fierce.  It's a long week and you definitely have to be persistent to get into shows you want to see.

8. Music is everywhere.  Joey ran into his favorite band The Sounds on the street, and music is literally pouring out of everywhere on 6th street.  It's amazing to just walk the streets and people watch. (More on that later)

9. Austin is cute.  Look at this cute little alley way we found.

Later that night I watched the hip hop artist Astronautalis perform at a venue right next to this alley.  He was AMAZING.  Seriously check him out, he's been around for 10 years and definitely knows how to put on a show.  He took six words from the audience (red solo cups, Virginia Wolf, platypus nipples, his grandma Gloria, star wars, florida, and some other ones as well) and came up with a freestyle rap on the spot.  Amazing.  I talked to him after the show and we are looking into booking him for a show at the U of M.  Yeah, that's right, I networked last night. (I'm really bad at walking up to people I don't know and talking to them, at the Trade Show I watched my coworker like a hawk Lee and learned that people like talking, so here I come world!)

10.  I will always love the color of hippie jewelry.  I always have to stop and gawk.

11. I am out of shape.  These bike cab people are buff, I saw one skinny little hipster bike up a huge hill with two people in his cab. I don't think I could have even biked up that hill.

12. I like Austin.  It has been described to me as a "hippie oasis" in the middle of Texas, so I'm not sure I'd ever come back (maybe for SXSW) but I am so thankful for this opportunity.  Thanks work :)

Well I'm off to do some more people watching, session attending, and music listening.  More to come later...especially on that people watching!