The Academic

10:03 PM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

I found this on my Frankie Frederick's blog. He's a friend of mine from NYU who is one of the most inspiring activists I've met. He works in the interfaith movement and is founder of an organization called "World Faith". Check his blog out at: .

I love this and absolutely feel the need to repost (hence, I struggle with these same issues) :

The Academic

In the Land of Parzania, the Center of the Universe
Where knowledge is said to be the key,
Of doctors and lawyers, and engineers
An academic is the one to be!

With calculations and theories, yes with concepts
The Academics do tell,
an explanation of everything
yes, even of Heaven and Hell!

With certainty he says, the data does elude
That the Sun is in love with the Moon,
Should the Moon find out, he’d certainly stop
Promising our permanent doom!

The commoners, they listen intently
On the wild theories abound,
But some can’t help but wonder
What will really happen on the ground.

They’ve heard such antics, they’ve seen it before
Like when the War did end,
The Academics did promise,
That there could be no war, yes never again!

See the Academic, she’d studied poverty
at the finest university in town,
Followed by the Food Aid conference,
at the swankiest hotel around.

But when she left Parzania
true poverty she did find,
The theories now seemed irrevelant
only their sorrow filled her mind.

Perplexed she called her mother
An aging Academic herself,
Listened to her daughter’s inquiry
When reading the books on her shelf.

“Mother what can I do?”
The daughter cried on the phone,
“The theories now seem worthless
When you’re starving, cold, and alone.”

“Knowledge is great, theories are better”
The mother quickly replied,
“But the best are those morsels of wisdom
Those that can be easily applied.”

“See Academics are neither good nor bad
As by now you have probably pained,
But they have a choice what to do
With the abundant knowledge they gained.”

“So be learned, yes read and write
And be cultured, yes it’s all true,
Just remember God cares not what you think
But watches what you can do.

A Poem by Frank Fredericks



1:48 PM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

Hooray... it's time for the GRE Words of the Week! In honor of my recent bout with Bikram Yoga... I devote the GRE WotW to the experience...

noun- (akk see uhm)
premise, postulate, self evident truth
Synonyms: adage, apothegm, maxim, rule
adjective - (suh loo bree uhs)
Synonyms: bracing, curative, medicinal, tonic, therapeutic
adjective- (saan gwuhn)
ruddy; cheerfully optimistic
Synonyms: confident, hopeful, positive, rosy, rubicund

Part of my 2009 New Year's Resolution was to continue developing some life axioms (especially when it comes to my physical well being) . Therefore, in an attempt to make my life a bit more salubrious, I started doing Bikram Yoga.

This is what I thought I'd be doing:

And this is what I actually felt:

Never the less, I remain sanguine, it was incredible and I'm completely addicted!

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Finally, my big chance guys!

8:39 AM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

Sometimes I just have to hang my head in shame of what this profession (and the job opportunities) has come to.

Coolness Ranking of Reality TV: 0
Coolness Ranking of People who are seek friends, love, attention and fame on Reality TV: 0
Coolness Ranking of People who are seeking friends, love, attention and fame on Reality TV multiple times: -75



Friday, Jan. 23, 2009, 4:37 PM Pacific

Reality TV

Casting Director: Doron Ofir
Interview Dates: TBD
Shoot/Start Date: March - April
Pay Rate: non disclosed
Location: Los Angeles



Casting only the 'Hottest Girls' and the most 'Fabulously Fierce Guys' who are at least the age of 21 and appear under 30.

Paris Hilton's My New BFF is back for a part deux.

The Heiress to American Royalty extends her most exclusive invitation to expand her A-List Clique.

Do you long to strut into the world's most elite hotspots without a care in the world except how fabulous you are? Ever wish the velvet ropes didn't exclude you from the social circles of the A-List? How about the fantasy of jet setting around the world with the ultimate BFF, whose fierce style, charisma and star power is only matched by your own.

Now that's hot! Paris is granting the opportunity of a lifetime to one girl or 'fabulous' guy who has what it takes to join Paris Hilton's inner circle. Finally, you have the chance to show the world that you have what it takes to achieve social stardom; allowing you unprecedented access to young Hollywood as never before. Loves It!

Doron Ofir Casting is enlisting only the 'Hottest Bitches' and the most 'Fabulously Fierce Guys' who are at least the age of 21 and appear under 30.


who are at least the age of 21 and appear under 30.

who are at least the age of 21 and appear under 30.

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EMERGENYC - Call for Applications

12:18 PM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

I highly recommend this program. I had a wonderful time being part of it last year... Please feel free to contact me if you would like more information about it.


Dear friends and colleagues —

After an incredibly successful first year of EMERGENYC (Hemispheric New York Emerging Performers Program), we are delighted to announce the Call for Applications for 2009. As you will see, this year's format has changed and EMERGENYC 2009 will be a shorter, more intensive version of the 2008 series, more closely approximating the intense and multi-faceted approach we have developed at our Encuentros. This year's topic will be ACTIVIST PERFORMANCE, so please distribute widely to young New York-based activist/performers ages 18-23, and to organizations that could make this call available to them.

We are including the Call and Application Form as an attachment (Word document) and also in the body of this e-mail. Application deadline is February 20th.

All the best,


--EMERGENYC Hemispheric New York Emerging Performers Program Call for Applications 2009Activist Performance Series

The Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics at New York University is now accepting applications for EMERGENYC, its 2009 Hemispheric New York Emerging Performers Program. This year's theme focuses on Activist Performance. As a part of the Institute's Hemispheric New York initiative, the Emerging Performers Program aims to support the development of New York-based artists between the ages of 18 and 23 through a program of workshops and events that will take place between April and June 2009. We seek talented, committed and highly motivated young activists/artists/performers whose work functions as a vehicle for political expression and social change, and who examine the broad range of identities, practices and histories of the Americas (the western hemisphere, thus "hemispheric") through genres such as spoken word, street performance, political cabaret, performance art, video performance, movement, and others.

Why Hemispheric New York?
New York City is a space of transformation in which expressive practices from throughout the Americas come into contact and combine into new artistic forms. The constant encounters and collisions of African-, Native-, Asian-, Latino- and European- American cultures that define the City, combined with the multiple political and counter-cultural movements that have flourished on its streets, are a key source of the artistic and activist innovation that has long characterized New York City. Experimental performance, hip-hop and salsa are powerful examples of the hemispheric fusions that the City's neighborhoods have incubated. Anti-consumerism activism like Reverend Billy's Church of Stop Shopping, artistic interventions such as the Guerilla Girls and Fulana's If You Fear Something, You'll See Something poster campaign are examples of the innovative conjunction of art and political protest. Drawing on this vitality, the program will enable young activists/performers to work with leading practitioners in the field, to take interdisciplinary leaps, and to develop their own strategies to use performance for social change.

The Program
Between April and June, the selected participants will take part in weekly workshops led by George Emilio Sánchez as well as by invited artists/activists such as Reverend Billy and Saviri D, Guillermo Gómez-Peña, Fulana, and others. One of the goals of this year's series is to work in all five boroughs in New York City. We are asking applicants to define social issues that are important to them (e.g., globalization, the environment, the economy, racism, gender/sexuality, etc.), and to find a bridge to communities around those issues.
The program will be divided into three phases. Phase 1: every Saturday from April 4th to May 9th, participants will work closely with George Emilio Sánchez in developing performance and activist strategies, such as Boalian techniques, performance art and site-specific interventions. Phase 2: intensive daily sessions from May 16- 23, participants will work closely with leading activists, artists and scholars, and will explore specific tactics for work in the field (street performance, interviewing, videotaping, seeing other people's work, etc.). Phase 3: every Saturday from May 30th to June 13th participants will develop their work with communities of interest throughout the City (hopefully in the five boroughs), building on the strategies explored through the workshops. Final event (June 20th): participants will share their strategies and experiences in a public forum.

This program is free of charge.

Who Is Eligible
EMERGENYC is open to activists/artists/performers between the ages of 18 to 23 who live in New York City. Applicants must have prior experience in activism and/or various performance genres. The program welcomes applications from individuals enrolled in the City's colleges and universities AND from those who are not currently pursuing formal higher education.

How to Apply
Please send the following materials to no later than February 20th 2009:
1) Completed application form
2) A resume or biographical statement (maximum 500 words) that tells us about who you are, where you are from, your performance background and your current projects.
3) A statement of purpose (maximum 750 words) describing the reasons you want to participate in EMERGENYC. Please also describe the specific issues you would want to address through the program and any preliminary ideas about the communities where you would ground this work.
4) 2 letters of recommendation, which your recommenders must send directly to

Selected participants will be notified March 6th and program activities will begin on April 4th.


The Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics is a collaborative, multilingual and interdisciplinary consortium of institutions, artists, scholars, and activists throughout the Americas. The organization's mission is to map new areas of knowledge based on understanding embodied practice—performance—as a way of creating new meaning and transmitting cultural values, memory and identity. Through courses, work groups, conference/festivals, a digital video library, an online scholarly journal, a tri-lingual website, and public forums, the Institute explores the relationship between expressive behavior and social and political life in the Americas.

For more information on the Hemispheric Institute, please visit:


Artistic Name (if any):
Street Address:
E-mail Address:
Phone Number(s):
Website (if any):
Date of Birth:
Languages spoken (other than English):
How long have you lived in New York City?
Please provide us with the names and contact information of your recommenders.
Recommender 1Name:E-mail Address: Phone Number:
Recommender 2Name:E-mail Address: Phone Number:
APPLICATION CHECKLIST (see Call for Applications for details) Completed application form Your biographical statement (250-500 words) Your statement of purpose (500-750 words) 2 letters of recommendation (to be sent directly to us by recommenders at Optional: Samples of your work.


Yes, We Can!

11:23 PM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

In honor of our new President Barack Obama, I repost the Obama/Biden arts policy and campaign platform. See here:

Also, be sure to join me (and hundreds of thousands of others) in signing a petition as per Quincy Jones' suggestion to create a Secretary of the Arts for the Obama cabinet. This could be a monumental step in arts education in this country. Online petition with over 150,000 names can be found right here:



11:33 AM / Posted by Ashley / comments (1)

A little late this week due to some beginning of the week template drama (still working out the kinks). Here we go with Kaplan's GRE words of the week... BTW- I have to add a few each week if I'll ever make it through the box.

(sah lih sishz uhm) - noun
grammatical mistake; blunder in speech
Synonyms: blooper; faux pas; vulgarism

- During the beauty pageant, Miss South Carolina responded to her final question with, "I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because, um, some people out there in our nation don't have maps and, uh, I believe that our, uh, education like such as, uh, South Africa and, uh, the Iraq and everywhere like such as, and I believe that they should, uh, our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S., uh, should help South Africa and should help Iraq and the Asian countries, so we will be able to build up our future," she was content with her answer and clearly unaware of her solecism.

(mihs ihv) - noun
Synonym: message

- Some people I know receive missives and autographed pictures in the mail from Rachel Maddow... I, on the other hand, receive bills from Sallie Mae.


(Thank you Keva, for scanning this for me!)

And, finally...


(sih dih shuhn) - noun

Behavior that promotes rebellion or civil disorder against the state.

Synonyms: conspiracy; insurrection

- One of my favorite pieces of American anti-sedition propaganda was called "Deh Fuehrer's Face", made by Walt Disney in 1943.

(This video is fascinating in so many ways...)

I still don't know why "sedition" is double spaced for no reason...

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Gotta have a list...

10:14 AM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

No better way to end (or begin) the week than with a list (or a few)...

Things I have to do this week:
-Organize "Vignettes" (put schedule into planner)
-Reply to e-mails from Russ (all of them)
-Schedule/Organize MMRP and e-mail cast
-Finish "Rachel Corrie" lists/telephone calls/finalize details
-Finish "Left Forum" panel submission/send letters
-Send fundraising letter for Middle East trip
- Reply to "Notes for Peace" e-mails (all of them)
-Deliver PhD application on Tuesday
-Finish/send Fringe and MITF applications

(This list will most probably triple itself by the end of the week... maybe even today)

People (who are alive) I want to invite to my dinner party (and take a picture with):
- Barack and Michelle Obama
-Rachel Maddow
-Suze Orman
-Hillary Clinton
-Sean Penn
-Al Gore
- The girl that runs the "F-Word Ezine"
-Eve Ensler
- Annie Leibovitz
- Lisa Kron
- Anna Deavere Smith
-Leigh Silverman
- Julie Taymor

(My "people who are dead" dinner party invitation list is too excessive to publish here)

Things I bought last week and probably should not have:
-1 cab ride (although it was late and cold)
-Susan Sontag's published journals

Things I will probably never have to buy again:
- BAM Tickets
- computer paper
- paper clips
- various condiments and salad dressing

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Loser of the week...

4:26 PM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

As ridiculous as this sounds, I certainly wouldn't put it past people ...

Burger King Cancels Whopper Sacrifice Facebook Application

The benefits of friendship will never rival the beauty of free food. Burger King found that out the hard way. Facebook has disabled the Whopper Sacrifice application after 233,906 "friends" were sacrificed in the name of hunger (or obesity).

In case you missed it, Burger King released a Facebook application that promised a free burger if you removed ten people from your friend list. It is a sad day when a burger means more than a friend, unless that friend was really never a real friend to begin with (our heads hurt). This is deep on so many levels, not to mention a commentary on how society has rendered terms like "love" and "friend" virtually meaningless.

As for us, we are going to go lay on our friend the couch and lovingly fall in love with our friend the friendly television. [From:]


Open Letter to President-Elect Barack Obama

10:56 PM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

On December 5, 2008, a few days before the 60th anniversary of Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a group of global and domestic women's organizations gathered in New York to frame a shared agenda for advancing global women's rights. Determined to use their collective strength and expertise to work together to advance a global agenda for women's freedom, safety and agency, they crafted the following open letter to President-elect Obama and committed to working together to see their vision come true in this century.

Dear President-Elect Obama,

As a group of women leaders who have given our lives to the transformation, protection and empowerment of women in the United States and globally, we want to begin by congratulating you. We are honored and proud to have you lead the nation during this historic time. We also welcome your call to action, reminding us of what we have always known -- that as global citizens we cannot solely rely on any one administration's ability to bring about change, but must be steadfast in pushing forward our own vision and agendas.

We represent a historic movement for change: millions of women across the globe with innovative ideas, influential constituencies and collaborative solutions. We are calling on you to ensure that women are equally represented in everything, from your administration's infrastructure to its decision-making and solution building. We are calling on you to exercise leadership in dismantling the structures that perpetuate gender inequality, impede women's full participation in society and thwart real progress for people around the world.

As war rages in Gaza, it is clear that the time has come to dismantle militarism as the dominant ideology in world politics. We must ensure that women take the lead in building lasting peace in the Middle East, ending genocide in Darfur, stopping femicide in the Democratic Republic of Congo, fighting the War on Terror in Afghanistan, and ending the war in Iraq.

Though the select-few women who hold leadership positions in this country's political system inspire us; women represent more than 50% of the population and deserve more than marginal representation. We believe that in order for your vision of change to succeed, women must be in positions of power. While US women gained the right to vote 100 years ago, to date only 14% of the US Congress are women. This must change.

The major economic, security, governance and environmental challenges of our times cannot be solved without the equal participation of women at all levels of society -- from the home to institutions of national and global governance. Women's voices must be central in all major discussions including the economic crisis, overhauling our education system. Long-term investments in women's education, health and leadership development are equally critical. Economic structures continue to marginalize women. Consider this: women represent two-thirds of the world's labor yet we own less than 1% of the world's assets.

In addition, more than 500,000 women die each year because of inadequate medical and reproductive care. Violence against women is a pandemic that determines women's realities, impeding their access to education and economic self-sufficiency. This global epidemic is undermining the future of the world, as women are at the heart of all communities and families; we literally carry the future in our bodies.

Yet these are not "women's issues." In fact, such investments are vital to economic growth and the well-being of all individuals, communities, societies and nations. Consider India's economic transformation of the past 15 years: The World Bank finds that states with the highest percentage of women in the labor force grew the fastest and had the largest reductions in poverty.

As policy makers, activists, researchers, and grant-makers we have spent our lives investing in women and know that these kinds of investments have immeasurable and fundamental impact for the better. Worldwide, women are uniquely positioned to bring innovative insights and creative solutions to global leadership forums. If we hope to improve existing economic, peace and security, and human development frameworks women must not only be included, but must be at the heart of the discussion.

We are calling on you to be the President who ushers in the time of women. Our vision of the future is one in which women and men are equal partners, standing shoulder to shoulder in confronting the world's challenges. We welcome, with hope and anticipation, your shared commitment to this vision.

We represent more than half of the world's human potential. And our time has come.


Linda Basch, PhD
President, National Council for Research on Women

Mallika Dutt
Executive Director, Breakthrough: Building Human Rights Culture

Eve Ensler
Founder, V-Day

Adrienne Germain
President, International Women's Health Coalition

Sara Gould
CEO, Ms. Foundation

Christine Grumm
CEO, Women's Funding Network

Geeta Rao Gupta
President, International Center for Research on Women

Carolyn Makinson
Executive Director, Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children

Kavita Ramdas
CEO, Global Fund for Women

Zainab Salbi
President, Women for Women International


COTE Tales - 1/18/09 - THIS SUNDAY!!!

8:34 PM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

Hello, Friends!

Co-Op Theatre East invites you to the inaugural production of COTE Tales, our new monthly play reading series, taking place this Sunday, January 18, 2009 at 7:00 pm. at Kaffe 1668, 275 Greenwich Street
(directions via HopStop) in Tribeca, Manhattan!

Come enjoy brand new plays from today's playwrights
(as well as tasty coffee & pastries!) at a delightful Swedish coffeehouse, and stay to chat with the artists and your fellow theatre-lovers! January's installment of COTE Tales will feature three short plays examining the effects of transitions on families, loved ones, and enemies in both times of war and peace.

Presented will be:

- Undertaking by Rob Florence: two brothers argue over the rights of burial while confronting their own buried sibling rivalries;

- To The Death of My Own Family by David Meth: a young Afghan woman must come to terms with a trip home that changed the shape of her family forever; and,

- Was by Jami Brandli: examining the blood ties between soldiers on opposite sides of the fighting line.

Performing will be:

Sheira Feuerstein, Henning Fischer, Robert A. K. Gonyo, James Edward Shippy, and Stewart Villilo.

See you there!

Co-Op Theatre East

Co-Op Theatre East

Co-Op Theatre East believes in the power of art to foster a dialogue for social change. We provide an entertaining performance forum in which to ask evocative, challenging questions of artists and audiences on our way to creating collaborative answers.

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Posted on January 8th, 2009

11:25 AM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

Dear 978 Facebook Friends,

As "unfeminist" as this post is, I'm determined (in 2009) to loose any excess and unnecessary fat that has come as a result of late night food deliveries, not exercising and countless other excuses. I know other people are interested in doing the same. Therefore, I was wondering if anyone would be interested in starting a work out group that does fun and fat free weekly activities (yoga, pilates, gymnastics, various sports, gym... throw ideas out there). We could create a fun and empowered work out collective. Respond, or message me if you're interested.



Blog Fail.

5:09 PM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

I've been dealing with a major blog template crisis over the past few days. I have not settled on a new design yet, but in the next few weeks the layout will be shifting. I would be happy to hear suggestions for blogger templates and some places where I can find some nice ones.


12:38 AM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

The History Channel is a television network of my heart...


GRE Word(s) of the week: PALLID and DERIDE

8:06 PM / Posted by Ashley / comments (1)

It's inevitable: Sooner or later (ideally sooner) I will have to engage in one of the College Board and ETS's biggest adult money maker, the GRE test. Performance Studies at NYU does not require the GRE... but every anthropology program does.

Here are some fine nuggets of advice from my friends at Kaplan:

"You may think that the GRE isn't a fair or decent predictor of skills - but that attitude won't help you get into graduate school."

"Too many people think of standardized tests as cruel exercises in futility, as the oppressive instruments of a faceless societal machine. People who think this way usually don't do well on these tests..."

Thanks Kaplan!

So, with that, I swallow my honesty (and pride) and attempt to transcend the monotony of GRE studying into something a bit more exciting. Once a week I will use this blog to revert back to my fierce middle school vocabulary homework skills and pull a random flashcard out of my "GRE EXAM VOCABULARY IN A BOX" (See picture above) and make sense of it.
This week:

(paa lihd) - Adjective
Lacking color or liveliness
Synonyms: ashen, blanched, ghostly, pale, wan

- Suze Orman's candy stripped blouse did not fit the pallid dress code of the Allen County Republican women conference, so she threw a black jacket over it.

Go Suze!

(dih ried) - verb
To speak of or treat with contempt; to mock.
Synonyms: gibe, jeer, mock, ridicule, scoff, sneer, taunt

- It look ten seconds for Keith Olbermann to deride Sarah Palin's foreign policy experience when she said "I can see Russia from my backyard!"

Never pallid (personality wise), Keith Olbermann

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New Year's Resolutions

10:00 AM / Posted by Ashley / comments (0)

Love 2009.

As always, here is a very abbreviated list:

- Stop using ATMS... or rather, I should say "Only use Bank of America ATMS"
- Only eat out/order delivery twice a week (Ideally, this number will go down)
- Get rid of all the clothes, junk from undergrad, useless papers/folders/binders that are taking up space
- Pursue goal-oriented ambitions free from preconceived notions of how life should be
- Stop buying books... use the NYC Public Library (or Bobst)

- Apply for AND Receive grants for COTE and GirlPower (There are separate lists for these two topics, of course)
-Get some fun/funky new pictures
-Save money to launch website
-By summer be in shape (loose the Grad Student fat)
-Be on top of sending postcards/letters to contacts when I'm doing work

Very abbreviated... the rest are in my journal.

Happy New Year!

Off to the gym I go....