Uncategorized

Hey Snapchat, I Think I Love You (for now).

Yeah, sure, I may be too old for it but I'm loving the story aspect of Snapchat. Truthfully, I thought Snapchat was used by teens for shit I could care less about. I'm sure that's the main use of it actually, BUT, I'm a story guy and I'm a guy who likes to film. This is a perfect combination.

In case you don't believe me, I made a video about it.... If there's a video that means you have to believe me. Of course, if you'd like to follow my stories on Snapchat, my username is: TheJoshford

[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MkbU2zq_yRQ[/embed]

Running Diary: Packers VS Seahawks: Sunday January 18th, 2015

As a huge Green Bay Packers fan a friend and I concocted an idea on Saturday night. It was over many drinks, more than I'd like to think about, and it may not have been the best idea. The idea being: "Hey, lets create a running video diary of our thoughts and feelings during the football game tomorrow."

Sunday morning when I woke up tired and more tired, we started the video diary. And we continued the video diary. My friend was all about it, he was confident and sure footed about the Packers game, I was all about it because I like to film and post videos... but had some hesitation because I was scared of how the game may end.

But, we did it.

A running diary partially filmed on an iPhone. Against everything in my body, I filmed a Vlog on my iPhone. I'm tired, emotional, somehow look more aged than normal, and stressed beyond any plausible belief. The Packers do that to me.

If you're interested in watching ... Here ye are:

(Go Packers 2015-1016)

THE PLAYLIST. RUNNING DIARY. TIRED JOSH. 

The TSA Is Clueless

When I was in high school living in Greendale, Wisconsin my friends and I used to get harassed by small town cops with nothing to do. The cops were the most two-faced humans on the face of the planet, wait, not all, but most of them. The majority would put on a facade of “hey, we’re your friends” but what they were really saying is, “hey shitbag, please sneeze so I can arrest you.” It was from my high school encounters that a subconscious hatred-seed was planted in my head and as time went on I grew to actually distain police officers. I never trusted them. I feel like I saw more officers walk with an air of entitlement rather than officers actually trying to help the public. It took longer than I care to admit to say that I respect police officers. As I’ve gotten older some of the best men I’ve met are officers. Solid guys sacrificing themselves for others. It took time for me to see that and I wish it didn’t, but my small town asshole cop named Officer Daniels ruined it for everyone.

Flash forward to current day: I’m now having the same adverse reaction to the airport TSA people as I did to cops and I don’t see this changing at any point in the future. The way that the TSA “structure” is supposed to be is the biggest load of bullshit that I can imagine. It’s nonsense. Literally, nonsense. Let me breakdown what happened today at LAX:

- Arrive to security.

- See the big magnetic new age body scanning machine and directly next to it is a traditional metal detector.

- See some people walk through the traditional metal detector with shoes and a belt on.

- Unload my belongings on the conveyor belt, take off my shoes and belt, approach the new age magnetic body scanning machine.

- I say to the TSA guy “hey, I want to walk through the other one.”

TSA guy says, “no, you have to go through this one (magnetic new age monster)."

Me: “Come on man, I see all these people going through that one, what’s the difference? And why do they have their shoes on?”

TSA guy: “You either walk through this one (fuck you magnetic one) or you opt out and do the pat down.”

Me: “Seriously?”

TSA guy: “Seriously.”

Me: “Why?”

TSA guy: “You opting out?”

Me: “Can I just walk through that other one? What exactly is the problem?”

TSA guy: “We’re only letting adults with children walk through there.”

Me: “Dude, I literally just saw a bunch of people walk through there without kids.”

TSA guy: “They had kids”

I’m now starting to get angry. I should note that I have this dark side that only comes out when an authoritative person like this starts bullshitting me. Oh, also, there were no kids walking through the traditional one. But it begs the questions, why the fuck aren’t kids walking through the new age machines? Are they harmful to kids? If so, aren’t they harmful to adults?

Me: “Seriously man, you’re going to tell me they had kids? There were no kids!”

My voice, slightly raised.

TSA guy: “So you’re opting out?”

Me: “Yes, fine.”

TSA dude calls someone over and says I’m opting out. I wait about 30 seconds and guess what, the new age magnetic machine stops working, someone yells that it needs to be re-calibrated, and then suddenly they direct everyone to the traditional machine.

I asked the guy if I could just go through the traditional machine, he said no, it was too late. I lost my shit. My arms were failing, I was literally on the verge of a breakdown. I started to bitch about how this doesn’t make sense and why can people suddenly walk through here?

I saw the look on this TSA guy’s face, and it was a look of total enjoyment. A look of knowing full well what he was doing. A look of entitlement. A look of unwarranted power as though he was actually doing something good. We all know the look. We’ve been there.

While I was ranting and yelling another TSA woman yelled from somewhere “Whats wrong?” I pleaded my case, trying to tell her I just want to walk through the machine. Why can’t I walk through the machine!? 

As I was making a fool of myself they just let me stand there until the woman came over and told TSA guy to pat me down. As he took me over I asked him why some people were able to wear shoes and a belt and others couldn’t. He said

“If you pay $85.00 per year you can get a back ground check done and it will give you an express pass through security so you can keep your clothing on.”

Wow. You fucking kidding me? 

He patted me down, I was angry, my fiancé just looked at me like I was nuts, knowing full well my problem with these guys. When it was all said and done I took one final glance at the smug assholes who actually thought they were doing something beneficial… And just like that, current day TSA people entered into the realm of the high school cops.

The thing is, I know that the TSA is meant for good but the reality is — It’s a total cluster fuck. There is no rhyme or reason, which is as much scary as it is frustrating. Everything about it makes no sense and I feel like we all know it, I even think the TSA knows it. It makes no sense to have a new magnetic body scanning machine and a traditional metal detector next to each other yet not allow someone to walk through whichever they choose. It makes no sense to allow someone to pay $85.00 per year to keep their shoes and a belt on. These are both just a big slap in the face.

It’s infuriating.

So, that’s my vent while flying on an airplane. My attempt to not sound like an asshole when talking about such a sensitive subject. I want to note that while I fully acknowledge the good that is intended, it’s a faulty system, it just is. We’ve been scrambling for years to stop people from harming others at airports and keep out the “bad guys” and while we haven’t perfected that system we have perfected the art of frustrating travelers.

Last thing - Fuck you, Officer Daniels.

 

inTransit: A Brief History Of My Journey and the Greatest Travel Show... Ever.

Image

Let me jump into a very quick story that turned out to be the catalyst to a life changing event. At some point in 2007 I met a guy at a ridiculous Hollywood party, he was sporting a Bulls T-shirt of Michael Jordan doing something awesome. Weird that I remember this? Yeah, maybe. But I’m from Wisconsin and if I think anyone is from the Midwest odds are we’re having a conversation. So, I go up and say:

“Hey man, nice shirt, you from Chicago?”

And he probably said something along the lines of:

“Yeah, where are you from?”

Which then sparked a casual run of the mill conversation in Hollywood that ended with us saying, “Hey, we should hang out some time.”

Flash forward to a few days later….

I get a text on my awesome 2007 flip phone from this guy saying:

“Hey, I’m going to walk over to your apartment, do you want to hang out?

To which I guess I said something along the lines of:

“Yeah, sure.”

The weird thing about this is that I didn’t know where he lived, I just said yeah because I was in my early 20’s and would say yes to anything. I called my other friend Ethan who knew this guy and told him he was walking over to my place. Ethan said that this guy lived over the hill.

***Just a quick little cool-guy Hollywood talk for everyone: When someone says, “over the hill” they’re basically saying they live in another world. I lived in a studio apartment in Hollywood and to go over the hill I’d have to take Laurel Canyon or God forbid, the Cahuenga Pass. I can’t talk about this anymore because my douche bag nonchalant Hollywood level is starting to get higher than I want. Long story short over the hill is far away…

So when I heard he may potentially be coming from over… and walking… I was confused. It didn’t make sense. Sure enough, a short time later this guy knocked on my door holding a six pack and said, “Hey, I found this on the side of the road.”

After a quick hang out he asked me if I wanted to walk back with him. I had to work at a Sushi restaurant later that night and I didn’t think I could do the walk. But after a moment of thinking I ended up saying, “yeah, sure” (I was early 20’s) and then he’d drop me off at work once we concluded the walk. We proceeded to walk back to his apartment.

On the long walk back he started to tell me how he always wanted to have a travel show and how much he loved travel. He went on, to what would later turn out to be an incredible philosophical approach about travel, and tell me about how important it was to see the small things along the way. How when people travel they can miss things, and essentially it’s all about the journey, not the destination. Of course, everyone knows it’s about the journey but few people actually instill this into their DNA, this guy was not someone who lacked it.

Flash forward to a few weeks later…

This guy comes over and tells me that he wants to document a travel series on YouTube. He wanted to walk from Los Angeles to San Diego, film it along the way, and then upload the videos at night. I thought it sounded awesome. Also, keep in mind that this was the early stages of YouTube, this wasn’t exactly a “normal” thing to do.  At some point he said he wanted to call it “The Walkstars" and get his two brothers to walk along with his friend from Hawaii. I said I was in.

Flash forward to a few more weeks later… 

We walked from Los Angeles to San Diego. Uploaded videos along the way. Got blisters. Got tired. Minimal arguing from everyone. Some drinking. A total of 5 days walking. I was going through a break up at the time and this allowed me time to reflect on how depressed I was and listen to Justin Timberlake’s “Cry Me A River” on repeat. It was a successful walk.

Flash forward to a few months later…

At this point this guy and I are pretty great friends. We connect on a production and life level, we like making short skits, music videos, and we constantly toss around ideas. We have a conversation discussing a scooter trip across the USA. We’d ride 29 mph scooters and instill the idea that it’s about the journey and not the destination. We’d take our time and see things in America that people ignore. We’d meet people along the way. We’d camp. We’d explore. We’d call ourselves “The Scootstars". We’d talk about creating an umbrella called “inTransit” for travels like “The Walkstars" and “The Scootstars" to live under… And yes, we’d film this trip.

I was in.

We spent roughly 3 months together traveling. At one point my scooter broke down so I hopped on the back of his. We spent so much time together we could probably read each others minds, whether or not this was a good thing, I’m not sure, but it sure as hell wasn’t a bad thing.

I can’t speak for him but I can tell you that a few very important things happened to me while I was on the road:

- I realized how much I cared for a woman who was back in Los Angeles. Little did I know but I’d end up asking this same woman to marry me.

- I realized that I wanted to focus on my writing and crafting stories through screenplays.

- I came to a new found appreciation of humans in America. I realized that there are great people everywhere and it’s what makes us, as people, great. There’s a lot of good in this world and people are at the core of it.

Once the scooter trip concluded my life was forever changed. Of course, I didn’t know it at the time. I needed years to reflect and connect the dots. The adventure and journey on the road changed me.

Flash forward to yesterday…

This guy released a sizzle reel highlighting his traveling, himself, and also the soul that is (what I think) his philosophical traveling beliefs. Since I stopped traveling with him after the scooter trip he’s taken public transportation through Central America, A canoe down the entire Mississippi River, a Train through Russia, A Land Rover across America, and most recently a quick trip to commemorate Peter Tosh’s 69th birthday (to name a few).

This guy is Peter Bragiel and he’s one of my best friends. We’ve basically been neighbors for the past 7 years and still collaborate on ideas, videos, and drinking beer. When I watched the sizzle reel I caught a glimpse of our scooter trip and it made me reflect how important that time of my life was. It was roughly a quarter of my life ago but it’s still a fresh memory. Our traveling caught me at an interesting point in my life and I may even go as far as to say it was transformative.

Then I got to thinking… That’s the beauty of travel. Specifically, that’s the beauty of inTransit and what Pete has created. He offers an outlet for those who don’t have it, or want it and haven’t embraced it yet. The motto of enjoying the journey is said so often yet it is rarely approached. InTransit is that outlet. It’s a journey, the adventure, the experience. There’s a cliche saying, “You don’t know what you don’t know” - and in my opinion, that’s the beauty of what inTransit is. You don’t know what you’re about to experience but you’re probably going to be better once you know it. Also, Pete is the anchor behind the whole thing and he's a person who genuinely loves to travel and experience what the road has to offer.

Below is Pete’s sizzle reel and if you haven’t seen inTransit you’re missing out. For me, watching this is an incredible journey that I watched my friend go on and fortunately I was able to be apart of it, if only for a short period of time.

Check out this reel. I can’t tell you how badly I want this to be a fully funded TV show or show that lives online. It’s different from anything you’ve ever seen. I’m not just saying this shit because he’s my friend. Trust me. If you live like this, if only for a little while, who knows what will happen to your life…

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wM4mpPYUHQU?list=UUs1o_kAxoMj1xcRyBp-rIYg&w=560&h=315]

Pete's Youtube Channel: www.youtube.com/pdrop

Predicting The Future: Screenwriting

Welcome to the first ever installment of Predicting The Future. I imagine these posts will be random and sporadic… Like the future!

I had a conversation with my friend about screenwriting. I said, “Remember when people didn’t have the internet or computers to write screenplays? 

I proceeded to think about the time and effort that once went into researching screenplays. I bitch and moan when my internet is running slow or the batteries to my keyboard are low. After that I poured a little out for the trailblazers who used pen to paper or fingers to typewriter. 

A second after that I started to think about the future. There will probably be a future-ish me thinking, “Man, remember when they had computers and had to type everything out to write screenplays?” (Hopefully future-ish me will pour a little out). I got to thinking about how I think screenwriting may evolve, and this is what I got… 

Future screenwriting programs will be able to understand what is being typed, and based off of just the little bit that is typed, an algorithm will kick in and the program will generate thousands of options regarding where a story can go. Meaning, I write my first act and my program will then say: 

“Josh here is the options for the next 10 pages…15 pages…. 30 pages….” 

Essentially the computer becomes the writer in some regards. I imagine there will be different options as to how far this could go. Does the computer generate the entire story? Does it get a sense of how you write and then take over? Does it tell you what is most marketable? Does it tell you what is least obvious? The possibilities are scary.

Also, the other obvious prediction for writing screenplays is eliminating the writing altogether so you’re speaking screenplays. I wonder if this period of time is the last hurrah before “writing” is actually eliminated? The machines are taking over. I just poured a little out. 

Packer Playoffs and the return of Lost Hope.

Coffee (check), Packers socks on (check), plopped down on my couch (check), attempt to figure out how to Live Blog on wordpress but couldn’t successfully do it (check), lucky Twitter picture ready to be reposted if need be (check), nervous (sort of check), anxious (check check check). 

Packers game starts in about 30 minutes and I couldn’t be more excited. All of my irrational thoughts throughout the season lead to this game, I love it. That’s the beauty of sports. The fact that we can get a “winner” and “loser” is always the best kind of conclusion. There is definitely a finality to the world of sports, and I’m okay with that. 

I’m not totally sure if it’s the coffee or my nerves but I’m having trouble focusing on this post. Maybe a combination of both. However, I’d like to just express and come clean that there was one point in the season where I lost hope. It happened right after the Lions blew out the Pack on Thanksgiving. I specifically remember telling my friend they should rest Aaron Rodgers and call it a day, there is no way they’re making it to the playoffs. Well, shit. Here we are. I feel like a loser, a man that for a moment became the emotional sports fan that I am. 

I wanted to admit that. Clear my soul of all impurities pre game. I wanted to acknowledge that the hope I once lost has returned and I can't be a stupid fickle loser fan who leaves his team when they're down. I should have never doubted life. 

I feel good about this game. Oddly. Whatever the outcome of this game… I really hope Colin Kapernick doesn’t go berserk on the Packers. I don’t know if I can live through that again. 

Go Packers.

Inevitable Wisconsin Reflection.

As I sit in my bed at my mom’s house in Greendale, Wisconsin I realize that I haven’t lived in this state for nearly ten years. I almost can’t comprehend that. Wow, time flies, it really does. People always told me things would go fast, I sort of believed it, but “sort of” is now 100% gone, there is no doubt. The reflection of how fast time moves opens up a waterfall of thought about how I should utilize time, how I should be living life, treating others, treating myself, if I’m living the right way, if I’m happy, and what kind of strides I’m making in my life.

Uh oh, the obvious life-reflection-when-I-come-home moment is in full force. Well, it’s necessary. Sometimes you need to take stock of your life and how you’re growing as a person…or not growing. On the flip, maybe it isn’t normal to reflect as much as I am? Sometimes too much reflection can lead to doubt, for me at least.  The ideal case is that reflection leads to growth, but that isn’t always the case.

The beauty of having a small town like Greendale is that it’s always a reminder of where I’m from. It’s a simple reminder of who I was, and to an even larger extent, how I got to be who I am. I wonder if that’s the case for everyone when they return to their hometown?

The things written above is a stream of thought that I’ve had many times in past. My personal conclusion inevitable. However, now I tell myself to get there faster. I try to avoid the rabbit hole of emotion that comes with reflection. Also, time is flying, life is short, lets just conclude…

Live often, and live fast but do it slowly because life is short. And to echo a mantra that isn’t mine: “seek and find.”