Sunday, March 25, 2012

Don't Give Up

The past week has been very crazy both my personal and professional life. Gearing up to leave Korea has been a lot harder than I thought it'd be. I should have known, though...I mean, you can't spend a year in one place and not grow attached in some sort of fashion. I'll be posting something on that in the future.

But for now, I thought I'd take a minute out of the craziness of the day to share something one of my students wrote last week. I had them all write letters to children in Tumaini as an English assignment, and I'm immensely proud of the work that they've done. Now I have 300 letters on my desk to read through, sort, package, and send off to Kenya. Stoked!

Anyways, in the mass of letters there are a ton of really well written ones. Believe it or not, kids are pretty caring when they want to be. One letter did stand out, and it was his P.S. that really got me. It looked like this:
Keep going. Do not give up. In this world there are many chances...
Now take a step back and realize that a middle school wrote this in a language that isn't his own, and an already prolific statement just became something damn near tear-jerking.

Everyone can learn something from this kid, and I'm just here to confirm what he is saying. The more I travel and the more I see, the more I realize how big this world is. It's really big. And there is so much out there to do and see. I think we lose sight of that, especially when we have a wealth of knowledge at our fingertips yet we wrap ourselves in our every day lives.

These days, hope is a rare commodity. People lose it more and more each day. They feel trapped and lost, and the world seems like it's a very hostile place to be. I'm not going to lie: it is. And you will have to fight for the things you want in life. But there are always opportunities out there. And if a 15 year old in Korea can understand that, then so can you. Just keep going.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Festival Season!

One of the best moments in my short lived film career so far was my experience in Africa. And, for the past 2 years, I've been fortunate enough to be reliving that experience over and over again throughout the post production stages of "Roots of Happiness." Now is the fun part....

This week, Roots of Happiness will be making its US film festival premiere at the Sun Valley Film Festival in Idaho. We have already been shown at the Boreal Woods Film Festival in Canada and won the award for "Best Documentary." Things are starting to heat up, as we are officially scheduled to play at the Lewiston-Auburn Film Festival in April and the Black Hills Film Festival in May, and I'm sure we'll be seeing more festivals start appearing in the very near future.

I'm very excited, especially because the exposure that this story is getting so far has been extremely positive for both the people working on the film and our ultimate mission: funding the education of these kids. Activism through film is kinda in the spotlight these days...especially after the storm that was KONY2012. I won't go into that too much, but know that the team behind "Roots" is committed to getting as much money as possible to this education fund. Our mission is to raise awareness and funds for this cause, with no administrative costs and a film that has already been fully funded and produced.

I'll keep you guys updated as things progress. It's a great time to do what I do, and I'm so glad that this story has the opportunity to be shown around the nation and even the world. If you haven't checked out the trailer, check it out below. Thanks everyone for following, and I should hopefully have some big news for you guys in the months to come!

The Roots Of Happiness - Official Trailer from Purekix on Vimeo.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Taking a Break :)

Hey AOTOS fans! As of 4 days ago, I am officially 2 months away from leaving Korea and coming back to the USA. There are a ton of things in motion concerning jobs, films, and adventuring in general. Also, I'm going to be spending as much time as possible with friends and the people I love here in Korea before I say goodbye. That means, for the next month or so, Adventures of the Orange Sweater will be a little quieter than normal. If an awesome post comes to mind...then I'll definitely let you guys know (after all, that's how blogs work, right?). But for now, things will be a little slower. You gotta live life so you have some awesome stories to tell!

I might do some micro blogs here and there. Keep you guys in the loop on some stuff going on. For now though, I'll talk to you guys in a couple of weeks. Thanks for reading! And definitely check out some old posts while I'm gone...I'm sure I'll have some adventures to match the best of them :)