Rain, Plants, and Everything Else


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Foreword

First of all, thank you for subscribing to FORWARD.

In this social-first, auto-playing video, trending topic world, FORWARD is aimed to be the opposite of all of that noise. Not quite a blog, not quite a newsletter, my hope for FORWARD is to provide a monthly dose of inspirational features for you to check out when you have time instead of offering something that will fight for your time.

In this issue, you’ll find an update on the California drought, how to keep plants alive, why it’s important to speak up, and more! This is the first issue so please be patient as things may evolve over time as the newsletter forms its own identity. But in the mean time, please take a look at FORWARD, and join me in this brand new journey.

Oh! And if you like the newsletter, please share by forwarding (hehe) the newsletter to your friends and family.

Let the rain fall down

Before and After the Rain

After weeks of heavy rain, it seems to finally help California alleviate its record-setting drought. KQED did a nifty feature where you can compare the massive difference between 2014 and 2017 side-by-side. You can check out the feature here.

Not so Tender Greens

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Despite my best intention, I have yet to keep a single Rosemary plant alive around the apartment. My black thumb has become somewhat of a joke as Ian keeps buying me Rosemary plants to “replenish” my dead ones. You can check out the feature here.

Minus365: T-Shirts

I’ve always lived minimally, but even with a mindful intention my closet still tend to fill up over time. I was watching The Minimalists, a documentary currently available on Netflix, the other night and it totally sparked an idea for me to declutter my life.

Minus365 is where I will remove/donate one object from my life every day for all of 2017. Each month will be based on a different theme, and I’m starting with t-shirts for January to kick start this yearlong project. Just think, if I were to keep this up for the entire year, there will be 365 fewer things around my apartment, and my life!

Between all the t-shirts I was given (or earned?) in my five year of working at IGN along with other gifts and sentimental hand-me-downs, my closet is full of t-shirts. Are you curious enough to join Minus365? If so, reply to this email and send me pictures of your 30 t-shirts (or whatever you decide to remove!).

Say Something

Jamelia, A British R&B Singer

“The problem is that we don’t tell you, we speak about it amongst ourselves and you get to carry on about your day not realizing you’ve ruined ours.” Jamelia

Recently Jamelia, a British R&B singer, was on board a first-class flight with her daughter, only to be questioned by other passengers who asked to see their airplane tickets. She stood her ground and went on Twitter to explain why. You can read more about the incident here.

Now, I’m not a fan of hers because I have barely heard of her before this incident. But this happens all too often to me and to minorities everywhere. Like Jamelia said, I tend to be too polite or try to rationalize myself to be “the bigger person” instead of speaking up and calling out bullies who makes hurtful or ignorant comments.

But words do hurt, and their comments ruminate with me for the rest of day if not for weeks to come. Why do they get to carry on their day while we suffer silently? It’s not fair, it’s not acceptable, and it’s time we speak up.

Between Us: Classic Aransky

Maybe it’s my connection to RIT or maybe it’s me working at the crazy world that is IGN, but I have a lot of friends who are constantly working on various creative projects. Since FORWARD is a monthly showcase of all things interesting and inspirational, I want to use this space and share with you other interesting projects my friends are also working on.

Classic Aransky logo

Meet Michael Aransky and his new video blog, Classic Aransky. By day he’s a senior producer at IGN, and by night he’s on a yearlong journey to get comfortable in front of a camera as he works his way toward to making his first movie since 2012. You can check it out here.

If you have an interesting project and want to be featured on FORWARD, simply reply to this newsletter and tell me all about it!

Take a Minute

Photo by Michael Browning, courtesy of Unsplash

And..that’s it for January! Please (ahem…) FORWARD this to a friend if you enjoy this newsletter, or sign up below if someone had shared this newsletter with you in mind.

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Love wins

100w100d: A Link Between Worlds

Oh shit, totally thought this was something else but this totally rocks! Thanks @Rickhernandez76!

Day 94: Rick recently got me a copy of Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds for Christmas. I’ve been vey skeptical for this game for the longest time, mostly because I never really finished the SNES original and the graphics truly looked uninteresting for me. Who knew I’d become a believer the second I started this game?

This game is all about layers and depth, but you couldn’t tell from any of the game trailers. It’s only when you switch on the 3D does that world come alive. Ten hours and I’ve yet to be able to put this game down.

100w100d: This is Water

Day 80: I was really lost the couple years after graduating college. No longer bound with project deadlines and graduation requirements, I honestly didn’t know how I should take my first step. This video encapsulates the impatience and frustration I felt after a long, stressful day at work only to get held up by something else seemingly outside of my control.

Of course, I’ve since understood that it’s within my power to see the world differently. What took me years to comprehend takes this video ten minutes to explain; I highly recommend watching this video, but ultimately I suppose that’s your decision.

100w100d: Wii Fit U

Wii Fit U

Day 64: I’m a pretty big quantified-selfer, or in a broader sense, a data nerd. From tracking my music listening habit to my weight to even my social reach, I use quantitative data to detail aspects of my life I wouldn’t have otherwise noticed. Lately I’ve been using Wii Fit U and its pedometer to track my body habits.

Now, this is a $20 game plus device, so it’s not exactly in the same league as a Fitbit Force activity tracker (I’m saving up for that), but it’s been effective in motivating me to doing 40 minute of yoga everyday this week.

100w100d: I finally understand Wii U

Sure boss, of course I can do my best work while this #Zelda #WindWaker #WiiU sitting beside me... There's no urge to run home and play at all!

Day 63: I didn’t really know why I bought a Wii U. I bought it by impulse because it came with my favorite Zelda title, but in terms of hardware there’s no one feature that got me super excited.

It wasn’t until I saw Super Mario 3D World and thought about my friend and her kids did it dawn on me: this console isn’t for me, it’s aimed at families with small children.

From Off-TV Play to all their games that focus on local multiplayer, Wii U is created with families in mind.

In other news, I kind of want kids now.