Monday, February 13, 2012

Callentine's Day

Tomorrow is Valentine's Day for many people. It's a day of love and celebration. People get dressed up, give tokens, and show their significant others the affection that they really deserve every day, all year. For some, Valentine's Day is very special.

For me, it's special as well, but for a different reason. For me, tomorrow is Callentine's Day. For me, tomorrow is the second anniversary of one of my beloved friends, Callen Fuchs, dying.

In all honesty, I cannot believe it has been two years since his passing. It amazes me that the world can keep spinning that long without Callen on it.

I can't say that Callen was my best friend. I can only barely say that I thought we were good friends. But that doesn't matter. Because it never mattered to Callen. Callen Fuchs loved every person he ever met.

That may sound like a bold statement to some people, but if you had ever met the kid, you would entirely understand. He was the most beautiful person.

I remember where I was when I got the call that Callen had been in a snowboarding accident. I don't think I'll ever forget it.

What I'll also always remember is driving back home to Lakeville from Bemidji the next weekend to attend his funeral and his wake.

My girlfriend, Alyssa, and I had to park a few blocks away from the church and walk because the traffic and parking lot were so crowded. We walked into the church and I was absolutely astounded at how many people were there.

A drum circle was playing in the main room of the church, while bodies amassed in the lobby. A line of people switched back on itself like people were lining up outside of Best Buy for Black Friday. I saw suits and ties mixed in with long, dreaded hair, tie-dyed shirts, and patched jeans. I saw the most beautiful congregation of people you could ever imagine.

My heart swelled as my eyes seeped over. There were easily hundreds, maybe even a thousand people here to celebrate Callen.

Faces from high school, middle school, elementary school, and hundreds more I didn't recognize filtered in and out. And the most amazing thing; smiles graced tear-stained faces in greeting. And in celebration.

To put it simply, Callen had touched a lot of lives.

He loved every person he ever met. And, if you had met him, you loved him too.

There were no handshakes with Callen, only hugs.

I remember seeing that shaggy mane of hair walking in the halls of Lakeville South, and smiling. It always meant you were about to be blessed by a ray of sunshine in your day.

At Callen's memorial, I stepped up to Walt and Terri, his dad and mom, and expected to have to remind them of who I was. They didn't need reminding. They pulled me in and hugged me. They looked at me with smiles on their faces and eyes that couldn't cry anymore. They told me how much Callen enjoyed yearbook class with me in high school. They told me that was one of his favorites, and it was partially because of me.

Callen loved everyone, no matter how long he knew them.

I was fortunate enough to have known him since second grade, and be reunited with him in high school. And I could always call him if I wanted to when I was in Lakeville.

Later, at Callen's wake, in his best friend, Fidge's barn, about 50 of us reveled in Callen stories and drank in the spirit of Callen's life. It was the middle of February in Minnesota, so it was freezing cold out, but it felt warm and comfortable despite what the thermometer said. We were all there to remember and hold onto Callen for a little bit longer.

We laughed over stories of our shaggy friend. We met new people, like at any other party, the only difference was everyone had something in common and no one was random. If you met someone at Callen's wake, you knew that person was touched by the love and joy he could bring you.

I met classmates of his from his college. I re-encountered old friends. I met new friends, whom I may never see again, but I will treasure their company that night.

I'm amazed at how much Callen comes up in my daily life. I think about him more than I do my dead grandparents. But I think that speaks to his character.

Callen loved unconditionally. He truly wanted to meet and hear every person's story on the face of the planet. Callen would be the one person with 6.8 Billion friends.

Since then, I've tried to meet and love someone new every day. I hope that I can love half as much as he did. And I think that if every person tried to love even a little in the way Callen did, there would be no wars, no hunger, no poverty, no problems. Only love and peace would guide this world. And this earth that we stand on would truly be a better place.

On February 14th, every year, I celebrate love, like everyone else. But I celebrate the love that one man brought the world that he lived in. I celebrate Callentine's Day.

Love and Light. I miss you, friend, and I love you.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Type Tips for InDesign

So, I've been up since 4 AM this morning to open the coffee shop at 5. I then proceeded to sling coffee until 11, hop on my bus to my internship, then stare and drool at a computer screen for the remainder of the work day. Needless to say, I'm exhausted, so I'm doing a short post then relaxing for the night. Sound good? Great.

InDesign Type Tips

I found this link when I was watching Twitter yesterday. I found it great and helpful because my internship has different ideas about the rules of typography. I learned from a very strict and intelligent professor about typography (as well as from reading ridiculous amounts of typography books, because I'm a nerd). Anyway, I thought this was a nice, quick reference for some ways to spruce up your type in whatever format you're in. Remember: your content doesn't matter if no one can read it.

That's it for me tonight. I'm spent.

Love and Light, everyone! Goodnight.

First: Exciting News

Alright, it's been a long day, but I promised that I would do a couple posts. So, I will hold true to my promise.

First, we'll start with some exciting news: I got an opportunity to do some freelance poster design for First Avenue! So, now, I am working doing that in the evenings after work. I'll be putting together about three posters a week. I will get to use varying degrees of creativity while designing these pieces, but, it's an exciting opportunity, and one that will (hopefully) further my career.

How it happened: I was talking with one of my co-workers who happens to run a gallery in Northeast Minneapolis. She also knows people; people like K, who works at First Ave and runs the show there. K was also looking for a fresh graphic designer to put together posters for upcoming shows. Which is now, me! Hooray!

Anyways, I thought that was cool and that I would share.

Life's going to be busy, which is the way I like it. Internship, coffee shop, and now, the poster design gig. Not to mention, the blog you're currently reading, and the ever-exciting social life of mine. Life's full up, right now!

That's it for this post. Another one up in a bit!

Love and Light.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

It's Not Laziness, It's Busyness

I'm not sure if that headline should read Busyness, Busy-ness, or Business... Who knows.

Anyway, short post for now. I'm exhausted. I've worked about 10 days straight without a day off and I've got an early morning at the coffee shop tomorrow, so I will share a funny email I got today, and I will plan on sharing more and doing a more serious post tomorrow.


Here's my funny email from my new boss at First Avenue (where I'm now doing some poster design on the side): Labeled 'IMPORTANT'

Hey sorry, not sure if I brought this up at our meeting or not, but if you ever use Bleeding Cowboys on a poster you're fired.

I think I'm going to enjoy working with her...

Love and Light. Goodnight.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

I did a Guest Post yesterday...

Which is why I didn't do one on here. I was in Hutchinson visiting my good friend Karlie who runs Inspire Me. She asked me to do a guest post and I obliged. Check it out here!