Monday, September 28, 2009
Jay-Z has priveded O, The Oprah Magazine with the six books that "absolutely made a difference" in his life.
1. The Seat of the SoulBy Gary Zukav
There are two books that I absolutely live my life by. This is one of them. Growing up, I was always curious about religion. This book made the most sense to me; it’s about the way you live your life. I believe in karma and doing the right thing even if it may not advance you as far as you want. If every single person felt the same way about karma and intention, then the world gets fixed tomorrow. But temptation gets in the way. Zukav is right: It may take lifetimes to learn.
2. The Celestine ProphecyBy James Redfield
This is the other book I live by. It’s fiction—a guy travels to find a secret book that has a series of principles. The story is a metaphor for life: I could go left or right, I could be stuck, or I could keep advancing. Some people are happy where they are. I tried to hire a guy once, and I said, “Don’t you have ambition to be bigger?” And he said, “No, I’m good.” I had to respect that, but for me that was the wrong relationship.
3. The OdysseyBy Homer
This epic poem was kind of difficult for me to get through, but it has a beautiful rhythm. I got lost in reading about Odysseus’ struggle to get home and his longing for someone so strong, as his wife was, waiting for him. That’s like a dream—that kind of strength, love, loyalty.
4. OutliersBy Malcolm Gladwell
This book is about the principles of timing and repetition—about preparing yourself for luck, really. He talks about a hockey team, and how the players born in January had a year up on the guys born in December. They were fortunate that their birthday was early, but they also practiced—they put the work in. The book resonated with me because I was born at a time when there was an influx of incredible music into the culture, and I was lucky that my mom and pop were huge record collectors. In my house, I had music by Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, Prince, and the Commodores, and I’m listening to it every single day.
5. Purple CowBy Seth Godin
This is straight marketing advice: Your product has to be a purple cow—it has to be distinct to have any success. You have to be clear on your product: What are you? What are you putting out there? For years I never did an ad for [my company] Rocawear, because I cared more about the quality than the face in front. I hadn’t read this book back then, but when someone puts words to feelings you have, it’s like, “Wow, that’s exactly what it is.”
6. NiggerBy Dick Gregory
I don’t know who turned me on to this autobiography, but his sense of humor and the hardships he went through stayed with me—especially the scene where he started running home from school. It led to his joining thetrack team, which led to a scholarship to college. Running opened up a whole world for him.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Just spoke to my mom who is in California. My aunt who lives in our family home in the Philippines called my mom before the Ketsana Storm rain got too bad and began moving food, clean water and supplies to the Bahay Cubo (high sitting guest house type of thing made of sturdy bamboo). Latest update, the “regular” part of the house is flooded about 4 ft and the streets about 6 feet she is guessing, but it’s slowly going down. Ironically Bahay Cubos are structured after old school homes/huts and is holding up pretty well. Thank God for canned food, cell phones and phone cards.
I can’t imagine what it’s like for the people who don’t live in the higher elevated areas. It’s awful. What I am picturing is awful. I’ve been to the Philippines more than 10+ times and it’s no secret that the people are amazing, but the country is not prepared for anything of this magnitude.
Here are some of the areas my aunt said are hit hard: Pasig, Cainta, Taguig, Pateros, Quezon City, (overall) Metro Manila.
Please keep our friends and family in the Philippines in your thoughts...
Saturday, September 26, 2009
I don't know if it's something in the air, in my martinis or in my head... but somethin' is a-brewin. It could be that I've just turned 30 and when I looked over my shoulder at the years behind me I saw a girl who used to hate being one. The heartbreak, the mixed messages, the emotional highs and lows, the tampons - God, the tampons!
The point of this post? I guess to vent... to share, to enlighten, to say: I LOVE BEING A WOMAN!
I continue to amaze myself and be amazed by my female peers that I find myself giving, twittering, facebooking and emailing more and more encouragement. When they thrive, I thrive, which in turns recycles, the cycle.
And to be clear. It's not a man vs. women thing unless men make it that way... which I find sad and irresponsible. If you are a man reading this and understands or have a man/men in your life that "get it" - you are so blessed. So rich. So appreciated.
"You have the light in you to do anything you want D, don't let anyone dim your shine ma..." - DJ OX/Quentin Bradford, Jr. to me 2 weeks before he past away in 2005
Monday, September 14, 2009
Madonna was eloquent and human and honest when opening the show and presenting the Michael Jackson tribute. The MJ video montage was neat. The dancers did Michael total justice (loved having the female dancers doing “Smooth Criminal”). Janet was off-beat with Michael’s video image (she did “Scream”), but she danced her heart out. I’m pretty sure she lip-synced, but it was still very cool of her to perform.
Lady Gaga’s performance was weird and fabulous. Pink did her thing acrobatic style, flying high above the stage. I was scared the little pink heart over her boob was going to fall off to be honest. Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” performance made me think of how Jay-Z must have zero complaints in the bedroom. Beyonce’s hips are mesmerizing! Jay-Z and Alicia Keys performed and were spot on. I don’t know why Lil Mama’s presence was relevant though, someone please enlighten me. She annoys me.
The biggest news? And what I think is a dis on MJ's memorial/tribute deal... Kanye being an idiot. He embarassed himself by stepping' up on stage and taking Taylor Swift's shine.
He has since issued an online apology... the ever so classy Beyonce came to Taylor's rescue by letting Taylor speak during her time on stage.
Britney accepted her Pop Video VMA via satellite because she’s on tour. Cute. Here are all the winners:
VIDEO OF THE YEAR: Beyonce, “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It).”
BEST FEMALE VIDEO: Taylor Swift, “You Belong With Me.”
BEST ROCK VIDEO: Green Day, “21 Guns.”
BEST POP VIDEO: Britney Spears, “Womanizer.”
BEST MALE VIDEO: T.I. featuring Rihanna, “Live Your Life.”
BEST HIP-HOP VIDEO: Eminem, “We Made You.”
BEST NEW ARTIST: Lady Gaga.
BEST VIDEO THAT SHOULD HAVE WON A MOONMAN: Beastie Boys, “Sabotage.”
BEST BREAKTHROUGH VIDEO: Matt and Kim, “Lessons Learned.”
Let's see.. what else.
It was nice to see Eminem back in the game in a way. He won for his hip hop video "We Made You"... dedicated his award to Proof of D12. He seemed very sincere and thankful.
I think that's all I've got... "This is for God and the gays" - Lady Gaga
p.s. Shakira and Pink wore the same dress on the red carpet. Ladies hate that!