Category Archives: Funky Friday

Weekly posts!

My Biological Clock is still ticking…

USA is BAE

It’s been almost a full year since my last blog entry and quite a big has changed…Last summer, I tried to raise money to make my web series. Not only did I fail miserably, but it was all very public. For months, people said to me, “I’m sorry things didn’t work out for you….Do you have some kind of back-up plan”? Ugh. There was no good response so I just started quoting Aaliyah. “If at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself off and try again.”

Over the past few years, I’ve realized that giving up is not a part of my life. Of course, I’m human and I get upset when things don’t work out. If crying was a competitive sport, I feel pretty confident that I could take the USA to victory. Anyway, I digress…The point is that I knew I had to find a way to make this series, so I pulled it together and launched another Kickstarter Campaign.

And…..we will be shooting Biological Clock this August!! I am so incredibly grateful to all of my friends, family members, and strangers for all of the help, advice, social media posting, and of course, financial support.

Since I’m making a web series about love and talking about dreams coming true, I thought I would take this opportunity to congratulate my roommate and best friend Jordana. She got engaged last weekend and it was the most beautiful proposal I have ever seen. Congratulations Jordana and Noah!!!!

Failure

Last night, I had a pity party for myself. I finally let it sink in that there is a good chance that I am not going to raise all of the money for Biological Clock on Kickstarter within 5 days. I’m such a dreamer that I often have tunnel vision and forget to look at the big picture. Well, last night, after I let the tears flow, I realized that it’s ok if this first try at Kickstarter doesn’t work out.

Just as I launched my kickstarter, a war broke out in Israel. Since the tone on social media has been pretty political over the past few weeks, I felt a little uncomfortable constantly posting about my web series. Beyond that, this war gave me a lot of perspective. I have friends that are constantly running into bomb shelters and former students that are putting their lives on the line in the army. There have been innocent people killed on both sides of the war. So, in the grand scheme of things, is not raising money on kickstarter the end of the world? NO.

I think it’s important to fail sometimes. I don’t know why I’ve spent the past month being so afraid of it! People have to fail lots of times before getting what they want. Hmmm… sounds like dating! Can I get an Amen? Sorry-sometimes I forget I’m not a preacher…

Anyway, I have learned more over these past few weeks from my failures than I have ever learned. SO many people have backed me very generously on Kickstarter. Strangers, friends, and family, have given me more than I could have ever imagined. Whether it was financial support, moral support, or basically stalking people to donate, I really appreciate it.

During my pity party, my friend Alan said, “ You have guts that other people don’t. You can’t teach guts. You either have it or you dont.” Shortly after that, I heard Aaliyah whispering “If at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself off and try again.” I’m sorry if you don’t get the reference, but please brush up on your hip hop!

The point is that I am going to make sure to bring Biological Clock to Life. If I wake up on Tuesday morning, and I haven’t finished the fundraising, it’s OK. I’m going to be at my old camp for a week, so I’ll wake up to hundreds of cute little kids smiling and dancing. Could be worse, right? I’ll probably just launch a new kickstarter campaign a few days later!

In the meantime, I’m starting the official Biological Clock Email list. This way, I can keep you posted about next steps and will be able to send you behind the scenes sneak-peeks from the set. Don’t worry-I won’t fill your inbox.

Please click here to subscribe so that YOU can be a part of the Biological Empire.

Thanks and have Funky Friday!

 Photo Credit: Eitan Gamlieli

 

 

Falling off of the Monkey Bars

A couple of weeks ago, I was babysitting at a playground.The kids has lots of other kids to play with, so I just sat on the side. Although my initial instinct was to take out my phone like all of the rest of the adults, there was something so captivating about this society of munchkins that I finally gave my phone some much-needed R&R.

Within a few minutes, I saw a little boy fall off of the monkey bars. Immediately, he was surrounded by ten other children who came to his rescue.  They all crouched down to his level and asked him if he was ok. One girl decided to take control and she told the other kids to each grab an arm or a leg and they carried the boy across the playground. Although they were clearly well-intentioned, they giggled so much that they then dropped the boy. The leader paused for a moment, abruptly left the scene, and returned seconds later with a stroller. This time, she instructed the other children to lift the injured party into the stroller. Once that mission was complete, the entire group pushed the boy around in the stroller as if it was a wheelchair for the duration of their playground time.

First of all, you may be wondering what happened to the boy. Well, I’m sure he was totally fine. Children fall off of the monkey bars all of the time, and I think he enjoyed his “hospital stay” very much. Second of all, you may be wondering why I’m sharing this story. As an adult, I have noticed how much energy I have put into my own fear of failure. But why? Look at the little boy… He technically “failed” when he fell off of the monkey bars, but instead of the failure getting to him, he was then taken care of by a caring community and got to go on an even more exciting adventure.

Since I’m trying to create some pretty big things in my life right now, it seems important to pause.  I want to acknowledge the areas in which I am failing so that I can change course. OK…I have to admit that I still DO NOT like the sound of the word failure.. I don’t want to give it so much power.  For now, maybe I can just say the areas in which I am “falling off of the monkey bars”???

#1) Funky Fridays- When I started writing my Funky Friday blogs and making Funky Friday TV episodes, I had such high hopes. When I finally decided to follow my heart on a creative path, I was terrified and needed a little inspiration. I wanted to make everyone’s Fridays a little funkier by doing the same. Well, I quickly found myself trying to produce quantity over quality. So, in the spirit of the monkey bars, it’s time for a REMIX!!! Starting in June, I will be publishing either a blog or a Funky Friday TV episode every month. I hope that this remix is much funkier…

#2)Biological Clock-Just in case you don’t know, I have been creating a web series called “Biological Clock” for the past year and a half. I have a group of insanely talented actors, directors, musicians, and crew members working on the show. We are starting to get ready to shoot the series over the next couple of months, but there is just one problem. The script for my  pilot episode was AWFUL! My friends are all amazingly supportive people and many of them found a lot of beautiful synonyms for “awful.” However, writing a good script is hard-work and my first try would have been really great if I was still in Kindergarten… So, I’m going to try again until I can make it come alive.

The boy who fell off of the monkey bars taught me that I shouldn’t spend so much time being afraid of failing. I hope that we can all find the courage to go after the things we desire in life, and if they don’t work out, in the words of Aaliyah, “If at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself off and try again.”

Wishing you all lots of courage and wishing my New Yorkers some sun!

Have a Funky Friday!

A Big Birthday

As of tomorrow, we are about to approach my birthday month. No, I’m not one of those people that thinks I get a whole month to celebrate my birthday. I’m the opposite. I have serious BIRTHDAY ANXIETY. I’m not going to pretend to be a person that doesn’t like attention because that would be a huge lie. However, I get freaked out by birthday attention. There is this pressure that people have to celebrate me just for being born!

Well, this year is an especially big birthday. I’m not going to write the number because I still look and feel pretty freakin young. One day, I hope to be that sixty year old trying to bust moves on the dance floor… Despite all of my birthday anxiety, however, I have to say that I’m really at a great place in my life to bring on this birthday. In honor of my birthday, I wanted to share three of the biggest lessons I’ve learned so far.

1) Be open-minded. When I think of this lesson, I always think of the time I spent casting high-school shows. It was very often the shy kids that no one believed in that would get up on stage and make audiences cry. Allow people and opportunities to surprise you.

2) Love unconditionally. I’m obviously pretty preachy about self-love. So, do that first and REALLY believe in yourself. We’re all human so it’s not always easy, but we can’t expect others to believe in us when we don’t believe in ourselves. I think that love is the most important thing in the world, so after that, love the people in your life. Sometimes love means being really honest about something that is bothering you. Sometimes it’s about fully listening when people talk to you. Sometimes, we all lose our way, so don’t forget to love people when they forget how to love themselves.

3) Follow your heart. I have learned that everyone has ideas and that people love to give advice (kind of like what I’m doing right now). However, I’ve also learned that some advice will be super-helpful and some just won’t be right for you. It’s like food shopping…you can’t just buy every single food in the grocery store! I have spent the past year and a half FINALLY following my own heart. Even though it’s been terrifying, I’m so excited that I finally got the courage to make something that lights me up.

Speaking of following your heart, I have some not-so funky news. I will not be posting any Funky Friday blogs or episodes in March. I’m about to take some huge leaps with my project and I don’t want to burn the candle at both ends. Also, I want to admit when something isn’t working. I want to make a lot of changes in my blog and youtube channel, so when I return in April, it will be much funkier!! I can’t wait to share all of these updates with you. As always, thank you so much for reading and have a wonderful March.

Have a Funky Friday!!!

 

 

The Script is Alive!!!

creative team

Are you wondering why there is a picture on this update of way too many people sitting on one couch?  I don’t want you to lose sleep over it, so I’ll tell you. On February 17th, 2014,the creative team came to my apartment  and we did the first reading of the script!

I’ve always loved collaborating because it means that I get to be surrounded by people that are smarter and more talented than I am. As we read through the script, I got to hear the characters come to life and then I got to hear lots of brutally honest feedback.

In other exciting news, we have a huge cast, lots of crew members, and a very talented music staff. Of course, there is a long way to go, but in the words of  Marie Forleo, “everything is figure out-able.”

Since this entire web series is about love, I just wanted to send my love and to say thank you to everyone that did the first reading. There was so much laughter in the room and with your help, I hope to spread that  to millions of households.

Hug it Out Baby!!!

Ever since I was a teenager, I was fascinated by the concept of self-love. I  I don’t think I understood it, and I definitely didn’t apply it, but I loved watching makeover shows and chick-flicks. I was a total sucker for that moment in Hairspray when Tracy Turnblatt realized that she was beautiful, and as a result, Zac Efron fell madly in love with her.  While my love for Zac Efron has actually grown exponentially instead of decreasing,  my exploration of love outside of the movies has grown as well.

 For those of you that don’t know, I have spent the past year interviewing 100 New Yorkers about their love lives and creating a web series based on the stories and people I meet. It’s amazing how much I have learned about love from everyone so far, but there has been one thing that always stands out to me. A lot of people don’t love and value themselves enough! I have heard so many people utter the line, “ We broke up because he/she was too good for me.”  Since I am trying to learn from all of my interviews, I have spent this year focusing on self-love.

 One of the biggest lessons I have learned about self-love is knowing that I’m on this earth to share the experience with other people.  As I was writing  this, I immediately flashed back to an experience I had a few years ago. I was at the Hippocrates Health Institute after having some chronic health issues. As you can imagine, when people have chronic health issues, it can get emotionally exhausting. Everyone I met had been back and forth between doctors, surgeries, etc, so there were days when everyone just needed to vent and cry. One day, I was with a group of people and I started crying. Now, if you know me, you know that crying is not a big deal and certainly not an infrequent experience. I’m just a cryer.  However, after I started crying, there was a woman next to me that just started hugging me. Now, I’m not talking about a little pat. Here is a woman whose deathly ill husband was sitting next to her and she was giving me a full body squeeze. After the embrace, she said to me, “Honey, sometimes we all just need a good hug.”  I will never forget that moment.  It taught me that a huge part of self-love is letting people into your lives instead of trying to do everything by yourself.  Just look at Sir Richard Branson! He always explains that he is both successful and happy because he surrounds himself with people that inspire him and share their brilliance with him.

Oh, and one more note. Thank you to Alexis Sirkin for the beautiful picture and thank  you so much to my former students for being the blog models this week. It really was after working with these kids that I experienced what it means to be surrounded by an abundance of love.  Seriously, they can’t keep their hands off of each other.  Love you guys!

 Wishing you all a good weekend, lots of self love, and allowing people into your lives to love you.

 Have a Funky Friday!

 

 

Calling Dr. Jamie to the ER

Just kidding…Rest assured-I’m not becoming a doctor and I have the science grades to prove it. However, I have been sick for the past couple of weeks and I am ready to be done! You know when you have those moments when you stub your toe on the bed and you want to scream at the bed for getting in the way? Well, I’ve had too many of those altercations during the past couple of weeks. I think that I need to read the signs and chill out!

So, unfortunately, I won’t be spending today at Coffee Bean blogging. I will miss that stuffy basement and blasting music. Don’t worry Coffee Bean-this is not a break-up. It’s just a break…Anyway, since my medical degree is clearly non-existent, here’s what I am prescribing for myself.

Jamie Mittleman MUST:

  1. Spend lots of time on the couch.
  2. Journal
  3. Watch something emotional on Netflix
  4. Spending time connecting with the people that I care about

I think that it’s really important to take the lead when it comes to our health and happiness.   What do you need to prescribe for yourself today?  If you need any help, don’t worry. I’m Jewish. That means I know tons of cute Jewish doctors for ya…

Thank you guys for reading my blog! Please make sure to check out Funky Friday TV next week to see an awesome and inspirational musician.

Also, a number of people have asked how the script is coming along for my web series. Well, the truth is that it’s a terrifying process, but the creative team is doing the first reading on February 17th. Ahhhh!  Even though I’m terrified and I’ll be hearing lots of brutally honest feedback,  I’m super excited. More updates to come…

Until then, have a Funky Friday!

Love Shack

2014-01-07_14.57.37

I think it’s time…I think it’s time to have THE TALK. Dun dun dun… It’s time to talk about LOVE. As many of you know, I have spent the last year interviewing New Yorkers about their dating, hook-up and love escapades in order to turn them into a web series.  People often say to me, “Jamie, you spend hundreds of hours talking to people about their love lives. Is there anything you’ve learned from all of it”? Well, thank you for asking. In fact, there is. Let’s choose one lesson for today.  I learned that in every situation, we are given the choice to close ourselves off to another person or to choose to be loving and supportive. Now, does this mean that we have to always smile and nod and act like everything is always peaches and cream???  Come on, that’s so vanilla. However, I challenge all of you (and me of course) to fully listen to the people in your lives, and then to choose how you want to respond.

Fortunately, I had the opportunity to test-drive this newly acquired knowledge a few days ago. I was talking to one of my good friends and he told me that he had been offended by something I said to him. Now, my first instinct was to get defensive and say, “Are you kidding me? You are a sensitive little _________________….” Quick- mad libs time…insert offensive noun here.  Instead, however, I thought back to my interviews and I realized that this was a perfect opportunity be loving and supportive. I paused and said, “I’m sorry. You’re right.” After I said that, I realized that he was right and that what I said was actually incredibly offensive! Lesson learned.

I know how hippy-dippy all of this sounds, but hear me out! Throughout my interviews, I have heard countless stories about relationships that don’t work out because people assume things about the other person instead of actually just listening to what they are saying. I don’t want to hate on my own gender, but I hear a lot of women saying phrases like, “ All men suck. They are all the same. There are no good men in this world.” Now, call me crazy, but I don’t think that’s sending the message, “I am a great catch and would love to get to know you.”

Ok, it’s time for a love smackdown…. Throughout my interviews,I have met so many awesome women and men that have a lot of love to give.  I am therefore debunking the theory that love does not exist. DONE.  Try and put a little more love into everything in your life and see if things start to transform. Put love into your food, the environment you create, the things you dedicate your time to, and of course the people in your life.

Oh, speaking of love, special thanks to my blog model Manny. Oh ladies!!!!!!!!!!! He’s single, very attractive, and can bench press more than…well, whatever, a high number for bench pressing is…I don’t know how these things work. Anyway, If you’re interested,  just send me a message through my contact form and I’ll hook it up.

Good luck with our love challenge and please let me know how it goes! Wishing everyone lots of love.

Have a Funky Friday!

Let’s Get Funky in 2014!!!

If Baby Ellie is telling us to have a Happy New Year, we’d better listen. You just don’t mess with that level of cuteness…

 Well, 2013, it’s been real, but it’s almost time for us to part ways. Before we part, however, I would like to tell you what I learned during our time together. The greatest lesson I learned in 2013 was that once I started fully listening instead of always closing myself off to the world, lots of opportunities came into my life.

 It’s even more perfect that one of the last days of the year is my friend Dori’s birthday. Although Dori and I have been friends for quite some time now, I feel like this is the perfect time to tell the famous “Arch-Nemesis Story.” When Dori and I went to college together, we both auditioned for the same a capella group… Stop laughing…Pitch Perfect made a cappella cool… Anyway, outside of the audition room, some might say that I was mean to Dori because I really wanted her spot in the group. I even went and told my friend Lewis about “Dori-the arch-nemesis.” Of course, there must have been some kind of universal smackdown happening because I later found out that Dori was his G-d sister!

 As luck would have it, Dori and I both ended up getting into the group, and I’m  so lucky that we ended up becoming good friends. I’m not telling this story so that I sound like a character in Mean Girls, but because I want to emphasize what we miss out on when we spend our lives being closed off to people and possibilities. Sorry Dorz!! Happy Birthday and I’m so happy to be celebrating with you years later!

 So, 2013, I guess it is time we say goodbye. Thank you for giving Baby Ellie to Kira and Andrew. She’s pretty delicious. Thanks for letting me celebrate Dori’s birthday with her, and  thanks for teaching me to listen. Wishing everyone a happy new year full of openness to new possibilities!

ellie 2014

Funky Friday TV Launch

garfield-dreaming-of-garfield-sleeping

I am so proud to be sharing that from now on, I will only be posting twice a month. No, it’s not because I’m lazy…It’s because I will be launching my Funky Friday Dream Series! On this series, I will be introducing you guys to all of the people that have inspired me by following their dreams. There will be singers, actors, personal trainers, entrepreneurs, and more. Please check out the launch next week.

In order to stay tuned to this series, make sure to subscribe to my youtube channel. http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBjEwZnL6aq8xN1JU5NAZmQ/videos.

As always thank you for all of your amazing support. Have a Funky Friday!