Food for Thought
Okay.  So for those of you who don't know, I've officially moved to Los Angeles, but a couple of days ago I came back to the east coast for a short visit.  First of all, it's great to be here.  I didn't realize how much I missed (and love) my seasons.  The leaves are just starting to turn color, the sun has been shining, and essentially it's really just been all-around lovely weather.  

Now, you may or may not also know that I don't post many of these.  In fact, I believe this is my second one.  Ever.  Go figure.

But I was driving today through a canopy of red and gold foliage and a thought crossed my mind that I felt the need to share.  It's cheesy, it's hokey, and while I'd love to pass it off as philosophical, deep, and meaningful, I'm not sure how many of you would buy it.  But here it is nonetheless:

The leaves struck me as a MASSIVE metaphor for numerous situations, and life in general.

Okay...allow me to [try to] explain.  

It just sort of struck me all at once that as gorgeous as these colors and various trees are right now, they're dying.  They're at the end of a season, and soon they'll be dead and fall off all together...and they're going out in a glorious spectacle of vibrance and color.  And I just thought, "What an awesome message to take from nature."

If we take a step back and really look at that, there's a lot to learn from it.  It's a perfect example of how we should be living life.  Take the metaphor in as big or as little a parameter as you want, the message remains the same.  It doesn't matter whether we're referring to a tough situation (or a good situation for that matter), or to life as a whole. The fact is, we should be doing exactly what nature is doing.  And why not?  Life is a beautiful thing, and is PERFECTLY represented by the seasons.  And right now, that season is ending.  That cycle is coming to a close, and will begin anew in several months...but for now it's almost as if nature is saying "Yep.  That's it for me, I'm done here.  But I'm going out with a laugh and a bang, and I'm going to be positive about it." And several months, the bare trees will cash in on that good karma and begin to flower again and give life to a whole new generation.  Is it really so unfamiliar?

I think the only unfamiliar part is that we look at the closing of a year, the ending of a cycle...the changing of a guard as a bad thing.  And it's not.  Why should it be? The year has had its ups and downs, I'm sure...but in the end a new day will come, and the cycle will be reborn.  Perhaps we should take a step back and observe nature and realize that we should be celebrating with laughter and smiles and celebrations; focusing on the positive, rather than the negative fact that something is coming to a close.  Because call me crazy, but I'm pretty sure that a fresh slate is just around the corner.

Just food for thought.

jakestormoen if you're reading this, welcome.  You're probably the first.  I don't normally do this whole LiveJournal thing, as Twitter seems to work just fine 99% of the time in sharing my random fleeting thoughts throughout the day (yes, I'm one of those).  This time, however, it just won't quite suffice.  So if you're reading this, welcome.  And thanks.

Not to sound like a total creeper, but the topic of this first post is an actor and dancer named Harry Shum, Jr. Recognize the name? If not, don't worry.  Chances are, however, you've seen him whether you realize it or not.  Most people these days have. You see, Harry has been in such films as the Step Up 2 & 3D, but most people now would probably recognize him as Mike Chang on the hit television series "Glee."

So why am I posting an entire blog about him? Probably a good question.  I guess the answer is twofold: one, to help spread word about him a bit, which also leads to reason number two: to thank him.

I had the privilege of being VERY briefly involved in Step Up 2: The Streets. Even saying briefly is an understatement.  I was an extra. They gave me one line, and the scene got cut.  If you blink, you'll miss me.  But that's not the point.  The point is, I had an absolute blast working on my first studio film, and met some amazing people through of them being Harry Shum, Jr.  I couldn't tell you how, but I ended up hanging with the cast for one of their birthdays, as well as attending the cast/crew screening of the film and it's after party.  Would I say Harry and I are friends? Of course not.  I barely hung out with him.  Then why am I writing this? Because in the time I DID spend with him, I was impressed.  Really, really impressed.

There aren't many people like Harry in the industry these days.  The guy's obviously talented, but he's genuine too.  I can't tell you how nice he was to me while I spent time with the cast those couple days, and how genuinely excited for me he seemed that I was even working on high end student films. He even got a hold of a digital copy of the SU2 trailer for me to screen before the film came out, at the premiere of said student film.  I mean, looking back, what I was working on was kids play. But to me, it was new and exciting--and Harry fully encouraged it.

Since then, every now and again I'll get a quick Twitter response from him, but he's been busy taking America (and the rest of the world, to be honest) by storm as Mike Chang, as well as choreographing the amazing dance moves seen in the web series "The LXD."  If you haven't seen either, please do check them out.  It's great that there's genuinely nice celebrities out there still, and it's something that should be encouraged--so please show your support. He's the kind of person that those in the public eye should be, and the kind of person I hope to be should I ever reach that point.

And Harry...thanks man.  You've made quite an impression.  Keep up the fantastic journey, and all the best to you as it continues.


[ Check out Harry at
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