Candle Lighter Award

Two weeks ago, I got a brand new blog award from an Evil Nymph called Candle Lighter Award. Thank you so much! It’s so awesome for me to see that people actually appreciate the weird stuff I write here.

Now we come to the set of explicit regulations: Rules.

Whenever you see a post or blog that you think brings light to the world, put a copy of this post and give them The Candle Lighter Award. What does the recipient have to do to accept it? Just accept it. They can copy and paste the photo on this post onto their blog. What else do recipients have to do? Nothing. If they think someone else is a Candle Lighter, they can surely give them the award anytime and as often as they want. There is no limit to how many blogs you award TheCandle Lighter Award to and no limit to how many times someone can receive it.

And now we come to the best part: The distribution of this award to those who light that candle, inspire me, make me laugh, and make me cry (tears of happiness, of course) through their fantastic posts. Now, without further ado, behold, the list of awesome (in no particular order):

Amelie Mireille

Bitchin’ Rants

Indulge – Travel, Adventure, & New Experiences

The Hook

The 19th Letter


House of Happy


Stuff That’s Relevant

Awe Chasm

JavaGirl’s Life

Classroom as Microcosm

Soul Strikers

Mostly Bright Ideas

Oh God, My Wife Is German.

My Two Cents

Regected Riter


The Writ of Cotton

Reasonably Ludicrous

Courage 2 Create

I hope I didn’t forget to mention anyone… keep doing what you’re doing, fellow bloggers, writers, and creativators (creative creators).


The Five Stages of True Inspiration

I figured, since my blog is called “Inspiration Avenue,” I might as well write about what true inspiration really is. I don’t know why I haven’t done this yet. Well, let’s stop wasting time. Here we go:

Now, when I say inspiration, I don’t mean, “Oh, this painting is pretty inspiring.” No, I mean, an inspiration that is powerful enough to shift your paradigms and turn your world upside down. That’s what I mean. Something that punches you in the face and knocks you down, and when you try to get back up, nothing looks the same anymore.

There are five stages of true inspiration, really.

The first stage is: You have no inspiration. You’re basically a dumb potato and immune to the acknowledgement of anything innovative at all. The technological world is advancing and you’re clinging to your rusty phonograph. You say stuff like, “Who the hell is Twitter?! Everyone keeps talking about him!”

The second stage is: You come across something that, as mentioned before, punches you in your precious, elegant visage. Something that makes you shout, “DOUBLE YOU TEA EFF!” It hit’s you and you have that “Woah!” moment. It will confuse you, and you won’t know if you’re standing right side up or if you’re floating around in weightless space.

The third stage is: You start to ask questions. You research that inspiring thing that biffed you right between the eyes. “What is this? Where did it come from? Has this happened before? Is this a new thing? What’s next? What can I do about this?” Stuff like that. You’re really interested, and you want to get to the core of the inspiration that is beginning to shift your paradigms.

The fourth stage is: You researched as much as your brain could absorb, you talked to all kinds of people, you wrote down all your thoughts, so you basically know everything about whatever smacked you. Now you know what the next steps are, and you’re pretty much prepared to incorporate it in your life from now on. But don’t tell anyone about it yet! It’s important to keep the inspiration to yourself, because if you tell someone something, the chances that they’re really interested are not that high. So… um… just wait. That brings us to step númer fimm. (You probably knew already, but that was Icelandic for “number five.”)

The fifth stage is: The inspiration you got is now part of your life. You’re actively living it, whatever “it” is. And now that you’re living it, people will notice that something is different about you. You’re doing something that makes people think, “What’s up with that awesomeness?” They will approach you and start asking questions. You don’t even have to approach people to tell them about your awesome inspiration – they will come up to you and ask you.

So now, people will get hit in the face by your inspiring thing because you’re actively demonstrating it in real life, and then they’ll start asking questions, they’ll research things, and eventually apply it to their lives as well.

… And that’s what true inspiration really is.

Will SOPA and PIPA Turn Us Into Robots?

We like to consume, don’t we? We like to go to town and buy stuff. It pleases us somehow. I like to buy stuff, too. Right now I can’t really do it, because I don’t exactly have money, but I have enough to buy myself a pencil or something, so…

But we don’t just like to buy stuff. We’re not completely overtaken by consumerism. We also like to share and give, don’t we? That’s why we do things like filesharing on the internet, or copying songs on CDs and giving them to friends so that they can have the same awesome songs on their iTunes library as well. And that’s exactly what freaks SOPA and PIPA out. They hate that.

Prepare for the rant rant: SOPA and PIPA want us to be more consumeristic, and stop sharing and giving away free stuff. Why? Well, simple: Because if we buy stuff, the media industry will profit. (That’s usually how it works, Jan…) But since sharing and giving has some weird connection to what makes us humans, SOPA is basically going against human principles here. They’re taking away our ability to share and give freely and anonymously via the largest platform for generosity (as well as greed): the internet. And, SOPA, that’s kinda impolite.

So right now, we’re trying our best to stop SOPA. But I believe that even if that law passes, thousands of talented hackers will find new ways to create internet 2.0. You can’t just let one group of people control the internet – it’s too large. And too many hackers and internet gurus know how to circumvent the system anyway. But still. The fact that they’re taking away our ability to share annoys me. Who came up with that idea in the first place? Some guy who was like, “Hey I have an idea. How about we take the whole internet and turn its users into consumeristic robots?” Yeah, no. It’s sad, people. Freedom of speech, shmeedom shmof shmeech.

America, Land of the Captive

So there’s this new law that had just been passed in the United States. Its original name was HR 1540, but they changed it to “National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012.” Not many people have heard of this law, so that’s why I’m writing about it here, so that you get an idea of what’s going on behind the governmental curtains.

Basically what this means is that the president has the power to detain “suspected terrorists” indefinitely. This doesn’t just apply to foreigners; it means that any US citizen can be arbitrarily arrested on US soil for “suspicious terrorist activity.”

Presidents in the past claimed to have the power to do so, but they really didn’t. It was assumed, however, that they did have the power because of unclear, confusing, and obscure issues in the Constitution. But yeah, now the president actually has the power to arrest anyone at any time, and kept under detention indefinitely.

Here’s the problem: Now, the Administration is able to define what a terrorist is, as well as who is and who isn’t a suspect. Also, the president can misuse this authority, but I really doubt that he will.  But there’s still the chance…

Anyway, all of that to say, America is not the land of the free, as much as people want it to be. Out of all the countries I’ve been in (45 or so), America is definitely the most law and rule-infested country. It’s a police country. And there’s also SOPA and PIPA, which will restrict your freedom of speech on the internet. At least there’s still the right to bear arms…