Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Christmas is coming...

Anyone who knows me should know that I am a nut for Christmas time. I can not get enough of the feeling, which should also let people know why I am still listening to Christmas music in March and then start again in July. It is a magical time.
I was privileged enough to get one of my presents early this year. My wonderful mother bought me the new Josh Groban Christmas CD. I've been asking everyone I know why he hasn't come out with a holiday CD until now...I just don't understand. One of the tracks is a song titled Thankful (which I just added to the song list). I really believe this one is awesome for Christmas time, when people generally take the time to think about what they have and also what they can do for others who may not be as fortunate. I also believe that it should resonate through the whole year. We as a people are truly fortunate, blessed if you will, with amazing prosperity. Just remember that it can almost always get worse. Being thankful for what you have makes the bad times in life seem insignificant.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

The West Wing

Maybe it's all of the media coverage of the 2008 presidential election or just the fact that I love the intricacies of politics. I absolutely love "The West Wing". This show reminds me that there are people out there who truly care about the state of our country. Every time I watch the show, I just yearn for a political candidate like Jed Bartlett. I would vote for him...no matter what party he belonged to. We need more of that intelligence and charisma in our elected officials. I honestly want to be a better person when I watch the passion that is thrown around the Oval Office. I would love to have my life have as much meaning and be able to help as many people as they do.
Getting up on my soapbox...we should expect more of our political candidates. We should not allow ourselves to vote for a candidate just because he belongs to the party we usually vote for. We have a duty to demand the best from our representatives. If we all continue to think that our voice in politics doesn't matter and isn't heard, then it won't be. I'll get down now...

Stand and Deliver/Freedom Writers

Watched "Stand and Deliver" for the first time yesterday. It reminded me a lot of "Freedom Writers" that I also recently saw. I was quite impressed with both movies. With teaching as my chosen profession I believe that there is something lacking in our education system and both of the teachers in these movies exhibited that quality/belief: that anyone has the potential to do amazing things. Conventional methods only bring out mediocrity in our students. These two teachers believed in their kids enough to change their methods and invest time in their future.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

New Items on the list

I've added some new items to the list. Please feel free to keep contributing to the list. I welcome all suggestion and would love to get some that I haven't heard of or already read or seen. Thanks.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Personal Additions

I'm adding some more to the list to hopefully get everyone's creative juices flowing. Some movies I want to add are: The Replacements, October Sky, A Knight's Tale and Swing Kids. By way of books I would add: Veronica Decides to Die by Paulo Coelho, 1984 by George Orwell and Peter Pan by JM Barrie. All of these have been very inspirational in my life. I love watching and reading them over an over because it helps me to realize that my dreams are still there and reachable.

Everyone please share as much as you feel like. I hope to make a comprehensive list...comprehensive meaning long and full of goodness. Thanks again for your help.

Monday, October 29, 2007

The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino

This one was suggested by my loving wife. Here is her comment:

One of my favorite books of all time is The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino. I actually read it pretty recently and was so inspired. I think it's a book that I'm going to read once a year from now on. The boy in the book is a stable boy aspiring to be a salesman. He is motivated by a girl he meets that he would like to marry. But he won't be able to seek her hand as a lowly stable boy. He talks to a successful salesman who gives him a task to try out his skills as a salesman. He is so motivated by his longing for the girl he is sure he'll accomplish the task in no time. But things work out differently. I don't want to spoil the rest, but I believe everyone should read it! It's an amazing book about reaching your potential and it can also help us better our everyday lives.

This book is amazing and gives some amazing points that can make a difference in anyone's life.

The Music Man

This suggestion came from my mom and I totally agree. Here's what she said:

Even the older movies had situations of bettering yourself. Take “Music Man” for instance. Professor Hill was a sly, cunning salesman of band instruments and promised great things to the kids that played them. He then would skip town with the money and did nothing with the band that had formed. When professor Hill was on the verge of being lynched by an angry town that had been alerted that this is what he planned, a certain librarian encouraged him to reach his potential, encouraged him to actually have the kids play and he went on to have a pretty good band. Sometimes others have to see what we miss seeing in ourselves. Then it is up to us to stretch…..

I love the music man. No one thought that the kids could do it. One person with a different attitude can change a lot. Thanks Mom!!

The Pursuit of Happyness

This movie was suggested by Brandon and is a great addition to the list. The movie tells the story of a man and his son and their fight to make a better life for themselves. The trials that they go through on the way to their triumph illustrate another point I hope to make by this list...attaining your dreams is not easy and takes an immense amount of work. The movie shows that it is possible through perseverance and keeping your dream always in front of you.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Gattaca and Finding Neverland

The first two movies that I am putting on the list are the two that share the number on spot on my favorites list. Gattaca is an amazing show that outlines the life of a boy who is told that he will never amount to anything due to genetic defects. His determination allows him to do amazing things with his life.
Finding Neverland is one of Johnny Depp's finest. He plays JM Barrie, the playwright who brought us Peter Pan, and tells the story of his time with the Davies family that led to his writing of the play. His relationship with Peter Llewelyn Davies is inspiring as he helps him to find himself through writing.

What is the project?

I firmly believe that we as humans are capable of so much more than we actually produce. One of the reasons for our not reaching our potential is that society spreads the lie that it is not possible to reach our dreams. My life's desire is to eradicate this lie and help everyone see that their goals can be attained.
The goal of this project is to discuss literature, movies and music that show people reaching their potential by proving society wrong. I hope that many will contribute and share the things that have inspired them to go after their dreams.
I hope to assemble a list of pieces that I want to use for a more extensive project later. Please be open and share freely. Thank you all.