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Old 05-19-2005, 01:10 AM   #1
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Who, what are your influences?

Not too many of us are formed in a vacuum (There are always exceptions here, so I expect at least one person will have had no influences whatsover) Who, what has influenced you
and how? You don't need to limit yourself to one influence.

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Old 05-19-2005, 01:29 AM   #2
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My influences. Hmmm....

My mother. She raised nine kids, on a hospital maintanence man's pay. He handed her the paycheck and she balanced the budget. She grew a garden every summer and canned vegatables, jelly, juice, etc., to help feed us all. She made and sold quilts to make extra money. She made some of our clothes (I wore a winter coat she made for years). And she still found time to read a book a week and teach her daughters to sew.

Bono; he reminds me to think about issues. He inspires me to be a better person.

Mark Twain, Terry Pratchett; reading their books helped me to have more of a sense of humor about human foibles.

Those are the ones I think of right off the top of my head.

How 'bout your influences, BonoSaint?

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Old 05-19-2005, 02:16 AM   #3
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Certainly my parents. My mother taught me humor and compassion. My father taught me to fight for what I believe in
(although not agreeing with what I believe in, he probably thinks he has created a monster.)

My best friend--she taught me perspective, genuine honesty, ways of appreciating things. Always challenged me in ways that made me uncomfortable but always made me grow. She was always willing to show unabashed joy, unabashed sorrow, unabashed anger to this restrained person.

Thomas Wolfe and Dostoevsky taught me about the ways I wanted to write, but still haven't, John Irving, who taught me the bizarre ways I often do think and write are perfectly fine. (And PS, I love Mark Twain, too for the same reasons echo does).

Though doubtful about theology in general, I am certainly influenced (though do not measure up) by the ethical teachings and compassionate teachings of the Gospels and Buddhism (which I find quite similar). I also find much Buddhist teachings to be psychologically healthy.

Several musicians have influenced me. Neil Young taught me you can take qualities that many people would find weaknesses and turn them into strengths as long as you believe strongly enough in what you have to offer, the close ties between the dark and the light, the commitment to your own vision whatever anyone else is doing. Stephen Stills taught me there are always two sides to a story and it is best to be able to consider both those sides.

I have always been grateful to people, writers like Louise Erdrich, who have taught me how to use both sides of my brain, that this
reason-oriented person like myself can move into that almost mystical perspective.

Thinking about it, I have so many. Perhaps there'll be a chapter 2. These are off the top of my head.
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Old 05-19-2005, 03:36 AM   #4
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My faith, has inspired me to strive to be a better and stronger person

The bad things that have happened in my life, and the people who have hurt me- have made me tougher, stronger. Unfortunately have also made me doubt and dislike myself and internalize things about myself that deep down I know aren't true. It's a constant battle to overcome all of that.

In general good people inspire me-give me hope that the world is mostly a good place.

My grandmother who died when I was 12, she was a wonderfully loving person. I wish I could have had her in my life for a long time. My Mother inspires me- in spite of her faults and the issues we have, she is a very giving and generous person.
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Old 05-19-2005, 04:14 AM   #5
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my list is a long one, so i'll try to keep it short.

my first awareness of being truly inspired by another person was when i read the diary of anne frank when i was 10. she sparked my interest in history and human rights, which ultimately lead me to law school to study international human rights. in dreams begin responsibilities...

my russian history professor was both my harshest critic and biggest fan when i started university. he taught me how to write, how to articulate my thoughts concisely and coherently. he has such a passion for history that it seemed to come to life in his classes. wonderful, wonderful man.

my favourite law professor was working on her doctorate while she was teaching. her thesis was an analysis of how to work around the restrictions of patent law to get cheap generic drugs into third world countries that otherwise could not afford them. she now works with médecins sans frontières. she taught me to stick to my guns, keep dreaming my big dreams, because they can come true. just like hers did, right in front of me.

my parents have influenced me to be a better person as well, but not through inspiration. as i've grown up, i've come to realize how miserable and bitter they are about life, and they belittle me for having idealistic notions and ambitions. i spent many years simply rebelling, but i now i focus on living well, trying to be the best person i can be everyday.
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Old 05-19-2005, 05:02 AM   #6
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First of all, my parents. They taught me to think about the less fortunate people in the world and in this country. When I was growing up they told me that the Ku Klux Klansmen who were having meetings in the area were wrong and racism was wrong. So they gave me a sense of right and wrong. Then there's my conversion to Catholicism. Also, when I got into U2, my politics changed, slowly but surely. I went from being a diehard socialist to a liberal, and that lasted, that's still what my politics is.
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Old 05-19-2005, 01:37 PM   #7
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Probably the most important man to me that ever lived, my father MR BAW, and BAW. Danny elfman, Jim Morrison, Ritchie Valens, Michael Jackson ( 1960's to 1980's), Bono, My Nana who taught me to love and not judge ( she used to hug my friends right when she met them) my Great Grandmother Lena for dancing at 80 something and always standing on my skateboard when I was a teenager to make us laugh. My aunt Doozer, for showing me Tolerance at an early age. I could go on, but I wont.
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Old 05-19-2005, 05:06 PM   #8
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Originally posted by DeadMansParty
Probably the most important man to me that ever lived, my father MR BAW, and BAW. Danny elfman, Jim Morrison, Ritchie Valens, Michael Jackson ( 1960's to 1980's), Bono, My Nana who taught me to love and not judge ( she used to hug my friends right when she met them) my Great Grandmother Lena for dancing at 80 something and always standing on my skateboard when I was a teenager to make us laugh. My aunt Doozer, for showing me Tolerance at an early age. I could go on, but I wont.
Its an honor and a privilege to tell everyone you are my son.
You've always been there for me during my tough days; I will always be there for you.

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Old 05-19-2005, 05:50 PM   #9
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wow, that was really beautiful.

i feel privileged to have been able to read that.
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Old 05-20-2005, 02:35 AM   #10
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Aw, I didnt know you were father and son...that's so beautiful.
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Old 05-20-2005, 04:43 AM   #11
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that's so nice
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Old 05-20-2005, 05:50 AM   #12
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Nice thread,and I have really enjoyed reading everyone's replies I think when we really think about it,there are more people who have influenced us ,than we realize.

My parents.My father even though we see things in a different way,he taught me to be passionate about my beliefs.My Mom who taught me to have concern and love for others.

Isnt it funny as we get older,we realize how much our parents influence us,because as teens we dare not think that! LOL.

My husband for his silent strength and his unconditional friendship towards others.

My 7th and 8th grade teacher,who taught me to love the work of J.R.R Tolkien like I do.He exposed us to many other great works like Lord Of The Flies,Beowulf ,1984 and of course Shakespeare.! Iam sure that we would have read more "controversial" books but I was in Catholic Schools

Last but not least,our BMan Bono has influnced me in so many positive ways....and some other well known figures would be Mother Teresa,Bob Marley,MLK,and Pope John the 11.They all have at least one thing in common;the love and equality of all humanity.Things I very much believe in.
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Old 05-20-2005, 10:23 AM   #13
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* My parents: cuz they encouraged me to be an artist since I started to draw over the walls . they taught me that everyone of us have something special to give and that we can get all the things we want giving the best always. My mom taught that love is stronger than our differences and my dad taught me to have big dreams and reach them.

my Visual comunication teacher. She's the smartest person i've ever met, and she loves her work and loves the art and the new ideas. she taught me to look deeper, to be inquisitive and explore new things.

about the music... I wouldn't be the same without it

* U2: their music have a lot of lessons about unconditional love, any kind of love, passional, fraternal.... I learnt that it doesn't matter how many times you've been hurt as long as you keep the heart open to love.

* MetallicA: I listen to MetallicA since I was 10 and it defined the kind of music I like and also part of my personality. Heavy Metal and Rock music are signs of my independence and my search for individuality.

* the Cure: their music inspired to get deeper in my feelings, exploring the richest and darkest sides of my mind, taking my melancholy as a positive feeling, a source for my art.

* The Doors... ahh the bohemian life

visual artists

* Paul Klee: I love the textures, the images to ask you to touch them and I like the color. He explored a lot of techniques and ways to interpretate reality. His art has taught me to not be afraid of my own expresion and to be open to new plastical experiences.

* Alexander Calder: I learnt that Abstract art can be funny,and full of movement, when is free of the heavy teory from the critics. And he was a cool guy too

* Moebius: he has the best comics books I've ever seen. I started to write and draw my personal journal when I saw his drawings and the way he tells stories.

* Dave McKean: He has influenced a lot of my projects, specially the last one. I admire the way he combinates a lot of techniques and I started to ad photografy to my work.

writers (i got tired jeje):

* KafKa
* Herman Hesse
* J.R.R Tolkien
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Old 05-20-2005, 10:31 AM   #14
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My grandparents were probably the biggest influence in my life. My parents had problems that prevented them from really parenting me and my sister so no matter we needed, my grandparents were there. I remember my grandfather driving 80 miles round trip once just to pick me up and take me to a doctor's appointment. They thought nothing of driving an hour to bring me lunch money or buy me a pair of shoes. They are the very definition of selflessness.

They are probably the only reason I grew up having values and knowing right from wrong. I shudder to think where I would be if they hadn't been around. My grandfather isn't here anymore but I am forever grateful for the 34 years I had with him.
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Old 05-20-2005, 08:36 PM   #15
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My parents. They are the kind of people who volunteer for everything at church, including stuff no one else wants to do. My friends always adored my mom, who could strike up a conversation with anyone - even random people on the street. I'm very shy, but I think I learned from her that all you have to do to be considered a brilliant conversationalist is ask people about themselves and listen to what they have to say.

My older sister, for passing on to me her tremendous love of literature. Thanks, sis, for leaving all those books lying around our bedroom and letting me borrow them anytime I wanted to - even if I was too young to understand all the hard words yet and got sticky stuff all over the pages from eating gooey snacks while reading!

My seventh-grade English teacher, who wrote on one of my papers, "You write so well!" I think I might be a journalist right now because of her encouragement.

Then there's Bono and U2, but I guess that goes without saying.

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