Shortly before the end of last year, I was nominated as a kick-ass blogger by Kate at It Can Be Complikated. I must say it feels good to be nominated for a blog award even if it exist only in cyberspace!

My First Blog Award Nomination

Kate is an excellent blogger from Australia and I love reading her quirky posts. As said in her own words she is a “Part-time writer, full-time teacher, hack photographer, enthusiastic raconteur and wannabe comic…” – the comic part comes through very strongly in her writing. Thanks so much for the nomination Kate!

If you’re unfamiliar with blogging culture (as I am largely), I now have to adhere to the below rules (which have taken ages to complete I might add):

The rules, if nominated…
• Answer 7 random questions about yourself (as asked by nominator)
• State 7 random facts about yourself
• Nominate up to 7 other bloggers who are kick-ass
• Ask 7 random questions to those you nominate

Kate’s 7 Random Questions for Me:

1)      What is your favourite book of all time and why?

I won’t say that I have a favourite book per se, although I have read almost the whole of the Bible and there is no other book out there like it. Early in last year I stumbled upon a book called “Blue like Jazz” by Donald Miller – it was a New York Times Best Seller and was adapted into a crowd funded film last year starring that boy from Prison Break. Now, the book itself has almost nothing to do with Jazz as an art form, but draws parallels between Jazz and the journey of life; in that life is a never ending and unresolved process much like that bitter-sweet sound inherent in Jazz. This meta-narrative is something I’ve been confronted with drastically just recently – what with getting a job, starting life and putting my dream on the back burner so that I can earn money!

In addition, what hooked me about the book was that it followed Donald’s true life journey, being a struggling writer who both battles with the financial uphill of being an artist, but also the spiritual battle of being a Born-Again Christian in this modern life. Along with all the pre-conceived ideas of Christianity – what it is and what it isn’t, the book challenges both Christians and non-Christians alike in a non-judgmental and open way. It really doesn’t preach to you. The problem I’ve had with a lot of Christian media in the past, is that it is too “on-the-nose” and portrays life as having simple answers – when in fact life can be pretty messed up and make no sense at all sometimes!

To add to that, it is written in a very colloquial manner and it doesn’t require you to have a Phd in literature or theology to understand what the author means to say.

2)      Which famous person (alive or dead) do you admire most and why?

Jesus. Without getting too caught up in my personal spiritual beliefs, I do believe that it takes a very special and remarkable individual to make such a lasting impression – whether through the ages or just as a personal conviction. There is something so remarkable about Him that I can’t even begin to describe it in finite terms – it is more than mysterious or ethereal, it also happens to be incredibly tangible and NOW. Whether you believe in God or not, this man’s legacy has and will stand the test of time regardless of how contrived modern Christianity is, or how far man has departed from what He did and said.

3)      What is your greatest achievement?

Paul Hanmer - NYJB Conductor 2012
Paul Hanmer – NYJB Conductor 2012

Ahh don’t even talk to me about achievements 🙂 2nd place is like my middle name! 2012 was a year of small victories and of huge failures for me. One moment or group of little moments stood out for me even though they could also be seen as a humungous failure. Once a year, I go to Grahamstown (Eastern Cape, South Africa) for the National Youth Jazz Festival – where young jazz musicians from around South Africa compete for a spot in the coveted National Youth Jazz Band. You literally go head to head with some really kick ass musicians in front of a panel of seasoned jazz musicians and a live audience of jazz enthusiasts.

I worked really hard for this audition but got my butt kicked by a very deserving player. What sucked was that I was runner up for the 2nd time at the festival – so I see that kinda as a failure, but what stood out for me as an achievement was having Paul Hanmer (one of South Africa’s top jazz pianists and who was the conductor for the national band) stop me in the hallway and tell me that he loves (d) my playing. I was speechless. That moment was one for the memories, and even though it wasn’t a great achievement by a long shot – it meant a lot to me. Maybe in 2013, my “luck” will change 😀

4)      Fight or flight and why?

Fight. I’ve spent most of my life being bullied by jocks. For no apparent reason, they see it fit to always try to pull me down. It’s taken a lot to get over these kinds of people and it still seems like an uphill struggle. I think they think I’m inferior or a push-over, but one can only takes so much before you crack. In the words of the Hulk, “You won’t like me when I’m angry.”

5)      What is your favourite quote?

Again, I’m not sure if I have a favourite – but below is a scripture that I love.

“For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” – 1 Corinthians 13: 12 – 13

6)      How would you spend the perfect day?

Being creative, eating good food and enjoying good company – that doesn’t happen all too often.

7)      Cat or dog and why?

I love both, but dogs are a lot more fun in my opinion.

7 Random Facts about Me

  1. I play four instruments excluding the accordion, which I had to learn to play in 2 weeks. I play more air instruments than real instruments.
  2. Sometimes, after a long day, I talk in my sleep (or so I’ve been told).
  3. I often dream of busting bad guys (literally – like when I’m sleeping).
  4. I sing opera in the shower.
  5. I’m told I have oily/combination skin, and use facial products accordingly (don’t judge me).
  6. I curl my toes when I’m tense or deep in thought.
  7. My friend has a pet pig that I have no qualms about eating should it come to that.

 Bloggers who I think are Kick-Ass

Matthew is a very gifted young writer, philosopher, photographer, musician and I’ve been following his musings on life for some time now. Apart from being a rad blogger, he is also a really cool guy in person (since we met each other in a band set up) and a ferocious drummer! For anyone who needs to peer outside of their proverbial “box” – I recommend checking out Observing Vessel – “Observations, thoughts and general incoherent ramblings of a nutter”.

Hashi is a music student from Hawaii who lives in Texas. Her name is derived from a Japanese word meaning “Bridge” and as such, the name of her blog followed suit. She regularly updates her blog with her own music videos and stories from her life.

Jasmine probably updates her blog the most regularly in comparison to the other blogs I follow. She is a career musician trying to navigate her way around the pitfalls of life in the music business. I enjoy reading her quirky updates that consist mainly of animated images and larger than life photos.

This blog is all about great and undiscovered music and I stumbled upon it quite randomly. The author also posts very regularly and has a wealth of music knowledge from genres around the world, whether the tracks he references are unreleased or never been heard of before – I enjoy reading his posts tremendously.

Jesse is a “…junior in college, a passionate foodie, a music buff,  photography enthusiast, a born again Christian, lover of all things feathery and a girl on a quest to find a job that will pay me to travel,  lounge in cafe’s and eat all I want for free.” and also seems to be following my DIY Beat Challenge the most closely 🙂

7 Random Questions for Blog Nominees

1)      What is your favourite film and why?

2)      Who is your favourite band and why?

3)      Favourite lyrics from a song and why?

4)      What do you dream about most when you’re asleep?

5)      How do you feel about hashtags on Facebook?

6)      If you could do one deed for the human race, what would it be and why?

7)      Couch Potato or Outdoorsey? Care to elaborate…

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