As I travelled the world as a young man, the one thing that
always really got to me was the feeling that America was…lacking something that
almost every other country had. A rock-solid connection to a shared history,
perhaps you could call it.
In other words, a culture! Hah!
It’s a pretty common observation, I know, but whenever you’d
walk out into a city like Budapest or Prague, you could see thousands of years
of history built straight into the very essence of the town around you. With
each block came structures that were built hundreds of years ago by people who
knew that they’d never get to use them, but knew that future generations would.
There’s something to that concept that got lost in
translation as people packed their bags and moved here. It may be because we
got all the poor buggers of Europe moving over here in the early days whose
idea of adequate shelter is a thatched roof on a pile of rotten logs, but
whatever the case may be, I feel we got short-shifted in the exchange. Their
houses and the landscaping surrounding their dwellings captured a feeling, a
spirit, a people! Ours are…pragmatic. The frontier spirit, I guess.
Since our first tours out to Europe and then my own personal
travels to places like North Africa, India, China, Southeast Asia, and Japan, I’ve
been determined to grab a little of that time-transcendent energy and put it
into a home
that my family can use for generations to come. If you’ve read this blog
for any length of time, you know the family aspect of my life can definitely
use some work, but I do believe I have the house and its landscaping worked out
The perfect generational house has to have the permanent, opulent
yard to match, and for that I found an incredible company to help me get my
plans worked out just to my liking, Torrey
Pines Landscaping in La Jolla. Those guys have made some genuinely
incredible landscapes over the years, and they’ve helped me on more than one
occasion work up some landscaping plans that would be fit for a minor Asiatic prince,
harem and all.
For the real major jobs, the company provides a full CAD
(computer aided design) mockup of what the yard is going to look like, and as
changes are made or requested, you get real time updates on how those changes
are going to affect your landscaping without the need to just visualize it in
your head. This leads to you being less stressed during construction and makes
it way easier for everyone since you’re way more likely to fall in love with
the design instead of making last minute adjustments.
So, if you’re looking to reclaim a little of that Old World
spirit in your abode to pass on to future generations through some landscaping in your La Jolla home,
I can’t recommend Torrey Pines Landscaping enough.
I would like to speak about something near and dear to my heart to hopefully inspire all of you dreamers out there. I guess this will probably sound a bit more serious than usual, but here we go…
Who was the first person to give you one big chance at making your dreams come to life? For me, it was an executive in Los Angelos who gave me my first record deal. I was a young kid with no money and sky-high dreams. If it weren’t for that record deal, I probably would have ended up homeless in LA or back on my mom’s couch in Minnesota.
Every artist dreams of their lucky break. But for many of us who were born in the United States, we tend to take the American dream for granted. Success stories like Kenyan musician J.S. Ondara remind us of the transformative impact immigration has on the lives of artists around the world. In 2013, Ondara received his United States green card, and today his album “Tales of America (The Second Coming)” has been nominated to receive a Grammy Award.
Stories like Ondara’s remind us to persevere no matter our circumstances, and to appreciate how lucky we are to live in the United States. Moreover, my point is this: no matter how hard it seems for you to create your art, you must push yourself to do it anyway. You should unleash your creativity against all odds, because every day is an opportunity to make something beautiful even if it seems unlikely to make it big. You never know how many people are working harder than you while having fewer opportunities and resources. I truly believe that each one of us got to where we are today because someone decided to give us a chance. That person saw something in you that reminded them of themselves, and it was your determination and drive that convinced them to take a bet on you. And it’s up to you to pass on the good deed.
While on tour in Portugal, I met with an up-and-coming band out of Lisbon. They opened for one of our shows, and I was very impressed with their talent. After the show, their lead guitarist Adriano stopped by backstage for some advice on immigrating to the United States. I was caught off guard and I didn’t have all of the answers. I promised Adriano I would ask a lawyer in the United States and get back to him with answers.
Having dealt with a previous issue with my bandmate George (he almost got deported back to Canada), I reached out to the best immigration lawyer I knew of based in Orange County, Kiran Nair of K Nair Law Group. I knew that I could trust her expertise. Ms. Nair has represented cases in Los Angeles and San Diego, in front of the California Superior and Immigration Courts.
The next day, I met with Adriano and his band at one of Lisbon’s best coffee shops and shared some good news: I would fund their legal expenses to immigrate to the United States, and I knew exactly who to refer them as their immigration lawyer.
Keep on dreaming and never give up! And if you need an immigration lawyer, I recommend you give Ms. Nair a call.
K Nair Law Group, P.C. 31897 Del Obispo St #225, San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675, United States
I know that this sounds crazy, but I promise you that I am speaking the truth: my daughter asks me, not her mom, for makeup advice. Back in my rock and roll days, our band was too broke to hire professional make up artists for our performances. So I picked up a brush, taught myself how to use it, and somehow, I became quite the Picasso on my own face. Back then, the popular “look” was heavy eyeliner and black eyeshadow, so that’s what we wore. My band also had its own signature: red, orange, and yellow flames painted on with face paint. Don’t ask us how we came up with that.
Last month, I was jamming away in my studio when my daughter walked in looking VERY upset. Was she upset because I sounded terrible? I sure don’t sound as good as I did was younger, but I can’t imagine sounding so bad to the point of making my daughter cry.
“Dad, I need to talk to you,” she said. Uh oh – I’m pretty sure no father wants to hear their daughter start off a conversation like this. You never know what to expect.
“I hate my eyebrows.”
Phew. I was relieved to hear that this wasn’t one of those conversations.
Before I could ask her “What do you mean?” she broke down in tears. “I hate my eyebrows! One is too thick and the other is too thin! I spend so much time obsessing about them!”
Oh my. Now I know I had mentioned that I was somewhat of a makeup expert back in the day, but that was only with eyeliner, eyeshadow, and face paint. I knew nothing about eyebrows, so I was at a loss for words.
Later that night, I went online to see what could be done about my daughter’s eyebrow catastrophe. As it turns out, eyebrows are an extremely important feature of the face, and many women are dissatisfied with the shape of their natural brows. I came across a solution that combines technology with permanent makeup to give people the perfect eyebrows: microblading.
Microblading is a form of permanent makeup. The client’s face is mapped out, and a new set of brows is traced on accordingly. Then, the technician uses a fine blade to tattoo highly realistic brow hairs, creating the ideal shape.
I came across a permanent makeup service that offers microblading in San Clemente. My daughter was skeptical at first when I told her about the service, but when I showed her the pictures, she was instantly floored and asked if we could book her an appointment the very next day. She became even more excited when she found out that the owner used to be an interior designer and understood the importance of symmetry.
Once microblading is done, the eyebrows required a few weeks to heal and for the ink to fully set in. My daughter now has a new set of stunning eyebrows, and as usual, I helped her solve yet another makeup problem!
Lift Permanent Makeup 24452 Del Prado Ave #A, Dana Point, CA 92629, United States