2010s, In My Opinion, movies

IMO: SEVEN

My Fellow Blogging Friends:

WP told me today I’ve been blogging for seven years. It feels appropriate to be nostalgic.

On November 25, 2012, I began my blog because I self-published my first novel and was told by everyone at Goddard College that I should start a blog to showcase The Knife with the Ivory Handle. So I tried, but I didn’t enjoy the self-promotion or posts about how to write. I found myself posting about what interests me other than writing novels like history, art, books, traveling, and photography.

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The most satisfying part of blogging has been the many long conversations about movies with other bloggers. The Lucky 13 Film Club entries have been rewarding because others have taught me what makes a good movie. Discussing roles, actors and directorial choices is fun. The Winter Project studying a classic actor whose films I’m not too familiar with is a homework assignment I enjoy. BTW, this year’s choice is coming! Stay tuned.

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I never got into writing full reviews because I don’t think of myself as a film critic, but more of a lover of films. Sharing what has entertained me suits me more. Essential to my personality is finding the story in any art form. To all the many bloggers who have talked to me about the art of filmmaking, photography, writing, books, and music, I appreciate you more than you realize. Essential to my being is traveling. Thank you for allowing me to share my point-and-shoot photography and liking them.

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Look at those lemons.

It took six years, but Inside the Gold-Plated Pistol is published. I enjoyed sharing the research and experiencing your friendship and support. Writing a novel is a lonely process. 2014-2017 I’d say I spent more time on the blog than I did working on the historical fiction project. I teeter-totter between the two creative outlets wanting the emotional connection of blogging vs. the isolated hours of putting pen to paper to create a story that is coherent while creating complicated characters.

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Did you know I went to college for seventeen years? I don’t feel very smart. In fact, my head feels pretty cloudy. Since my days obtaining degrees are over, I thought I’d be enjoying my fifties by blogging because my life was calmer. Instead, life is set at a madding pace. I believe the creative process is what makes a life worth living. This blog provides me the opportunity to post and visit your blogs. I am grateful. I have a great idea! Can’t we agree to have a “blogging convention” somewhere interesting to see each other face to face and celebrate life?

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A Meditteranean dinner on the shore below Seville.

We could share an Italian dinner.

I’d serve you homemade Coconut Cream Pie for dessert.

Love & Friendship,

Cindy

culture, education, inspiration, love, writing

Four Life Principles: Thanks, Eleanor Roosevelt


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At the request of my school, I gave a speech today. My audience included parents, students, and community members at an assembly, and Eleanor Roosevelt stood by my side and helped me through it. Are you are feeling lowly today? Maybe a reminder is all you need. Let her wisdom lift you. Here was what I said:

Thank you, school board members, administrators, students, and the faculty for whom I represent for allowing me to address you today. I’d like to begin with a quote given by First Lady, Eleanor Roosevelt, who advocated for human rights and became an essential advisor for her husband, President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

She said, “Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.”

Whenever I face an anxious situation, like speaking on this stage in front of you, I like to pretend Eleanor is standing next to me. Her maxims are great ideas, life principles to follow, and there are four I’d like to share.

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1. Goal Oriented 

“I am what I am today because of the choices I made yesterday.”

Come up with a strategy. Then try it. Students, today you are commended for improving your grade point average over the course of a semester or a year. You are here today because you tried. Creating a goal is the first step. To execute the strategy requires focus. Remember, you are not competing against the person next to you. You are in a marathon race with yourself and your success first depends on a course of action.

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2. Self-Reflection

“Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t possibly make them all yourself.”

How did your strategy work? What can I do differently to achieve a better result? Life is about tweaking, modifying, and scheduling your time. If you manage your time well, efficiency will catapult your goals and results easier to achieve. Ever notice how true experts, athletes, and artists make it look so easy? It’s because they are efficient, focused, and tweaked their “performance” over time.

You change. Don’t be passive. Don’t wait for someone to suggest what you should do. This is your education, your life. Decide what worked and what didn’t; create a new strategy and try again. It is all about you.

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3. Be Positive

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”

This is the hardest principle to live by and it truly makes all the difference, for it is a choice, happiness, and it starts with positive thinking.

Insecurity. Fear. Labels others give you. Mountains to climb, Hardships. Loneliness. These are your companions for the rest of your life. What helps you achieve your goals, your dreams, is your attitude. Avoid succumbing to the negative by discovering strategies for dealing with these sap-sucking companions. People surround you who want to help you bypass your obstacles. Seek out the advice from those who have succeeded. You are never alone. A positive attitude takes practice, it is akin to hope, and worth the effort.

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“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”

How do you acquire strong self-esteem? How do you become confident? Self-reliant? Surround yourself with people who are positive. Allow them to fill the hours of your day and you will gain courage to face all those who only see the negative–the whiners, the complainers–those who want you to be miserable with them. Can’t find anyone positive? Then be your own best friend. Let the positive people from the past be your inspiration and your friends. Like Eleanor Roosevelt. They will give you courage. Let them be your teachers.

4. Reinvent Yourself

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 There’s an old film I’ve made a personal connection with and that’s Groundhog Day starring Bill Murray. Here was a story about a negative, obnoxious man who, stuck in a time glitch, relived his day over and over. He disgusts the girl of his dreams and can’t figure out why she doesn’t like him. Every day he learned something new. He discarded selfishness and cultivated a positive attitude. He became philanthropic. He became a leader in the community and devoted his time to learn something new, motivated to win the love of his dream girl. What if every day was the same day and you chose to reinvent yourself? What an opportunity! What would you do? What if you were the leader and positive role model for someone else? What do you think would happen to you? Give it a try.

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Practice. Try. Read all about it. Imitate. and remember a Cindy Bruchman adage: “Follow the Good, and lead yourself.” Thank you. No, thank you, Eleanor. It’s easy to be wise when you adopt the wisdom of others.