Monday, February 22, 2010

PonchoMeg: The Modern Bohemian Loves the Olympics!

I like the Olympics because it is a time when the whole world comes together, even as everyone competes against one another.  The Olympics are great because they show us that there are people all around the world with stories we can relate to, dreams we can remember ourselves, and the drive to win that seems to be in us all. Plus, the sports are fun to watch.  We have been supporting Shaun White of course  (With his amazing hair, his friendly personality, and his kick-ass skills... how could you NOT root for Shaun White?!?) and we have been watching a LOT of curling.  (Partly because A. has a thing for Madeleine Dupont, but also because curling is sweet!)  There have been lots of amazing moments already (Evan Lysacek anybody?) and I think that there will be even more to come.  I am excited!
At school, we are doing a big lesson on Wednesday that ties in with the Olympics.  We will be sending the kids to different "stations" throughout their time with us in the gym, and at my station, I am going to be showing them flags of different countries and playing them the different national anthems.  I'm pretty excited.
Speaking of national anthems, nothing quite fills me with more American pride than hearing the Star Spangled Banner during the Olympics.  I think it's because it represents a whole country.  But more importantly, it represents a dream that was actually realized for someone who is kind of like me.  Those Americans on the podium, those few talented and lucky people, prove that dreams can come true for us.  Dreams come true.
That's why I really love the Olympics.  I like to believe in the power of dreams.

Friday, February 19, 2010

PonchoMeg: The Modern Bohemian Loves Personality Tests

I am way into personality tests.  So, here are a few interesting ones in case you are too.  See what they say about me (pretty accurate I think) and then see what they say about you.  Let me know how they all turn out!

The first is Personal DNA: Your True Self Revealed.  I actually saw some results from it on an amazing blog: Post Apocalyptic Bohemian and decided I had to try it.  I am the:

Your imagination, confidence, willingness to explore, and appreciation of beauty make you a CREATOR.

You are independent and you enjoy your self-sufficiency.

Defying convention, you are very innovative, and you have a vivid imagination!

The look of things is important to you, and you have a key eye for aesthetic beauty in multiple arenas.

You have a strong interest in what is new and exciting - and that includes forging ahead with new ideas, not simply discovering what is already out there.

Your eagerness to seek new and varied experience leads you into many different situations.

You're not set on one way of doing things, and you are creative when it comes to finding novel solutions to complex problems.

You trust yourself to be innovative and resourceful.

Your confidence allows you to take your general awareness and channel it into creativity.

You're well-attuned to your emotional state, and not afraid to use your feelings to guide you.  You tend to be cooperative, rarely contradicting others, and always considerate of their feelings.

You tend to do things on the spur of the moment, not sticking to a set schedule.

You are a great person to interact with - understanding, giving, and trusting - in a word, BENEVOLENT.

You don't mind being in social situations, as you feel comfortable enough with people to be yourself.

Your caring nature goes beyond a basic concern: you take the time to understand the nuances of people's situations before passing any sort of judgment.

You're a good listener, and even better at offering advice.

You're concerned with others at both an individual and societal level - you sympathize with the plights of troubled groups, and you care about people you've never met.

Considering many different perspectives is something at which you excel, and you appreciate that quality in others.

Other people's feelings are important to you, and you're good at mediating disputes.

Because of your understanding and patience, you tend to bring out the best in people.

I am way into personality tests. Did I say that already? haha
The next is  I've taken this so many times! 
Results: Meagan took the free personality test!
""If motivated, she will easily and quickly learn n..."
Click here to read the rest of the results.

I long ago discovered the Myers-Briggs and Jung Typology Tests.  Check one out here: HumanMetrics
My most consistent result? ENFP.  (Extroverted Intuition with Introverted Feeling)
Today I found this analysis at Personality Page. Check it out:

Portrait of an ENFP - Extraverted iNtuitive Feeling Perceiving

(Extraverted Intuition with Introverted Feeling)

The Inspirer

As an ENFP, your primary mode of living is focused externally, where you take things in primarily via your intuition. Your secondary mode is internal, where you deal with things according to how you feel about them, or how they fit in with your personal value system.
ENFPs are warm, enthusiastic people, typically very bright and full of potential. They live in the world of possibilities, and can become very passionate and excited about things. Their enthusiasm lends them the ability to inspire and motivate others, more so than we see in other types. They can talk their way in or out of anything. They love life, seeing it as a special gift, and strive to make the most out of it.
ENFPs have an unusually broad range of skills and talents. They are good at most things which interest them. Project-oriented, they may go through several different careers during their lifetime. To onlookers, the ENFP may seem directionless and without purpose, but ENFPs are actually quite consistent, in that they have a strong sense of values which they live with throughout their lives. Everything that they do must be in line with their values. An ENFP needs to feel that they are living their lives as their true Self, walking in step with what they believe is right. They see meaning in everything, and are on a continuous quest to adapt their lives and values to achieve inner peace. They're constantly aware and somewhat fearful of losing touch with themselves. Since emotional excitement is usually an important part of the ENFP's life, and because they are focused on keeping "centered", the ENFP is usually an intense individual, with highly evolved values.
An ENFP needs to focus on following through with their projects. This can be a problem area for some of these individuals. Unlike other Extraverted types, ENFPs need time alone to center themselves, and make sure they are moving in a direction which is in sync with their values. ENFPs who remain centered will usually be quite successful at their endeavors. Others may fall into the habit of dropping a project when they become excited about a new possibility, and thus they never achieve the great accomplishments which they are capable of achieving.
Most ENFPs have great people skills. They are genuinely warm and interested in people, and place great importance on their inter-personal relationships. ENFPs almost always have a strong need to be liked. Sometimes, especially at a younger age, an ENFP will tend to be "gushy" and insincere, and generally "overdo" in an effort to win acceptance. However, once an ENFP has learned to balance their need to be true to themselves with their need for acceptance, they excel at bringing out the best in others, and are typically well-liked. They have an exceptional ability to intuitively understand a person after a very short period of time, and use their intuition and flexibility to relate to others on their own level.
Because ENFPs live in the world of exciting possibilities, the details of everyday life are seen as trivial drudgery. They place no importance on detailed, maintenance-type tasks, and will frequently remain oblivous to these types of concerns. When they do have to perform these tasks, they do not enjoy themselves. This is a challenging area of life for most ENFPs, and can be frustrating for ENFP's family members.
An ENFP who has "gone wrong" may be quite manipulative - and very good it. The gift of gab which they are blessed with makes it naturally easy for them to get what they want. Most ENFPs will not abuse their abilities, because that would not jive with their value systems.
ENFPs sometimes make serious errors in judgment. They have an amazing ability to intuitively perceive the truth about a person or situation, but when they apply judgment to their perception, they may jump to the wrong conclusions.
ENFPs who have not learned to follow through may have a difficult time remaining happy in marital relationships. Always seeing the possibilities of what could be, they may become bored with what actually is. The strong sense of values will keep many ENFPs dedicated to their relationships. However, ENFPs like a little excitement in their lives, and are best matched with individuals who are comfortable with change and new experiences.
Having an ENFP parent can be a fun-filled experience, but may be stressful at times for children with strong Sensing or Judging tendancies. Such children may see the ENFP parent as inconsistent and difficult to understand, as the children are pulled along in the whirlwind life of the ENFP. Sometimes the ENFP will want to be their child's best friend, and at other times they will play the parental authoritarian. But ENFPs are always consistent in their value systems, which they will impress on their children above all else, along with a basic joy of living.
ENFPs are basically happy people. They may become unhappy when they are confined to strict schedules or mundane tasks. Consequently, ENFPs work best in situations where they have a lot of flexibility, and where they can work with people and ideas. Many go into business for themselves. They have the ability to be quite productive with little supervision, as long as they are excited about what they're doing.
Because they are so alert and sensitive, constantly scanning their environments, ENFPs often suffer from muscle tension. They have a strong need to be independent, and resist being controlled or labelled. They need to maintain control over themselves, but they do not believe in controlling others. Their dislike of dependence and suppression extends to others as well as to themselves.
ENFPs are charming, ingenuous, risk-taking, sensitive, people-oriented individuals with capabilities ranging across a broad spectrum. They have many gifts which they will use to fulfill themselves and those near them, if they are able to remain centered and master the ability of following through.
Jungian functional preference ordering for ENFP:
Dominant: Extraverted Intuition
Auxiliary: Introverted Feeling
Tertiary: Extraverted Thinking
Inferior: Introverted Sensing

So does all this really describe me?  What do you think?

Peace and Love,

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

PonchoMeg: The Modern Bohemian Says Think Locally in 2010 (Michigan, I'm Going to Save You!!)

I wanted to make changes this year.  I wanted this year to be different.  Some of this will come by chance, but I think some of it has to be the direct result of efforts I put forth as well.
So in 2010, I am thinking locally!  I am going to make sure I shop locally even more than I already do, I will support local business people, bands, artists, visionaries and service providers, I will donate to local charities (as well as my other regulars, like the ASPCA), and I will get involved in more local activities.
Now, I happen to live in Michigan, so the following links mostly affect Michiganders.  BUT, there's nothing wrong with supporting another place's local economy, so non-Michiganders, feel free to browse as well.  There are some great large companies and small businesses in Michigan and tons of talent.

Check it out:

First of all, I have some resources to help you find more local stuffs:
Michigan's Official Website
Pure Michigan: Michigan's Official Travel and Tourism Site
Michigan Department of Agriculture: Give the Gift of a Michigan Made Product
Michigan Women's Marketplace
The Michigan Business Directory
Absolute Michigan: All Michigan, All The Time

Candles, Handmade Goodies, and Specialty Items (In person and Online!):
Great Lakes Candle Company, Lansing, MI
With Eyes Lifted: My friend Jessica's Etsy Shop, handmade in Michigan
Bohemia Too: Clothing, Accessories, Beads and Jewelry Crafting Supplies, Imports, Handmade, Gifts,   Novelty, Books, Etc. Located in Grand Rapids, MI.
Finders Keepers Variety Store: Located in Three Rivers, MI
Rustic Ridge Creations, Flint, MI
Island City Candle Company, Eaton Rapids, MI

The BIG Stores:
Meijer, Based in Grand Rapids, MI
Jiffy, Chelsea Milling Company, Chelsea, MI
Faygo: The Original Party Pop!, Detroit, MI
Gordon Food Service, Grand Rapids, MI
Kellogg's, Battle Creek, MI
Spartan Stores, Based in Grand Rapids, MI

Fine Arts, Entertainment, Tourism, and Local Talent:
Brena: An Alternative, Rock, Pop Band from Grand Rapids, MI
The Purple Rose Theatre (Jeff Daniels), Located in Chelsea, MI
Kelsey Kohlenberger's Voice Studio, Grand Rapids, MI
Goodrich Quality Theaters
Celebration Cinema
Heritage Guitar, Inc., Kalamazoo, MI
Michigan Artist's Gallery, Sutton's Bay, MI
Elderly Instruments, Lansing, MI
Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum, Paradise, MI
Michigan Historical Museum, Lansing, MI
The Marshall Historical Society, Marshall, MI
Arts and Entertainment on Absolute Michigan
Frankenmuth: Michigan's Little Bavaria
Mackinac Island
Eminem, Amazingly Talented Rapper from Detroit, MI
The English Inn: Restaurant and Pub, Eaton Rapids, MI
Poetry Society of Michigan
Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids, MI
Children's Ballet Theater of Michigan
City of East Lansing: Parks, Recreation, and Arts
Grand Rapids Art Museum, Grand Rapids, MI
Mackinaw City, MI
MISC. Michigan Goodness:
Quality Dairy
Yahoo Local Information on Darb's, Mason, MI
MichiganWeed.Org: Informative Website on Marijuana in Michigan, Run by Local East Lansing Residents
Mark's Hot Diggity Dog Stand, Based in Eaton Rapids, MI
PonchoMeg: The Modern Bohemian: A Michigan Based Blog of a Modern Hippie, Bohemian, Free-Spirit Living in East Lansing, MI
Weird Michigan

Local Charities:
Greater Lansing Food Bank
Woldumar Nature Center, Lansing, MI
Mother Teresa House, Lansing, MI
Michigan Audubon, Lansing, MI
Ele's Place: A Healing Center for Grieving Children, Lansing, MI
Capital Area Humane Society
John Ball Zoo Society, Grand Rapids, MI
The Humane Society of Kent County
Grand Rapids Community Foundation, Grand Rapids, MI
Crash's Landing: Cat Rescue and Placement Center, Grand Rapids, MI

Michigan Schools, Colleges and Universities:
Grand Valley State University (My Alma Mater)
Central Michigan University 
Calvin College
Michigan State University (Where most of my house mates attend school)
University of Michigan
Western Michigan University
Lansing Community College
Grand Rapids Community College
Jackson Community College
Douglas J. Aveda Institute
Ferris State University
Eastern Michigan University

Michigan State Parks, Campgrounds, Natural Wonders:
Michigan DNRE: Natural Resources and Environment
Sleeping Bear Dunes
Mackinac Island
Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park
Tahquamenon Falls State Park


Don't see the Michigan related item you were looking for?  Add links to great, local, Michigan resources in the comments section below, please!
I will probably continue to update this list...  I think it will be a great resource for me, and maybe others, to help us do more locally.
Peace and Love,

Monday, February 1, 2010

A San Francisco Reaction to the Westboro Baptist Church: AKA: A Creative Response to Hate

For those of you who are unaware of the Westboro Baptist Church, read about them on Wikipedia here.  Or you can look at their website, but I refuse to link to it.
Or you can just listen to my biased take on the WBC.  I think that they are giving a bad name to the Christian community because so much of what they do is about hate, not love and forgiveness as our man Jesus taught us. Plus, they simply walk all over public decency with their demonstrations.  Protesting at funerals and using words of hate and holding signs that say some of the most horrible, ignorant things (I have actual experience with this.  If you have not, count yourself lucky).
Recently though, the WBC turned up in San Francisco to do some protesting, not at funerals or anything, but at very public places including by the Golden Gate Bridge, outside a performance for Fiddler on the Roof, and at the San Francisco Bay Twitter Headquarters.  But what they were greeted by was not a mob of angry people, sick of them and their constant spewing of hate, but instead, by a group of people with a joke on their lips (and in their hands), love in their heart, and creativity on their side.  Hate, meet your protest challenger: Humor.
Please, read San Francisco's Answer to the Westboro Baptist Church by Ed Hunsinger to see more.
And please, whatever religion you practice, whatever group you may join, whether you are in the mainstream, the counterculture, or somewhere in between... try to remember that not everyone thinks like you. And that's OKAY!  And even if you want to try to change opinions... don't do it with hate.  I wish the people of WBC could remember that.
Peace and Love,