I had a conversation the other day with the Small Business Owners of BC Facebook Group, and we were discussing motivation, drive, and the desire to get the work done. We all came to the conclusion after the discussion, that if you really want to do something, you’ll fucking do it. Because if you really want it, why wouldn’t you? Right?

Yeah yeah, what if you’re overwhelmed and you can’t, that’s one way to think about it, but what if it’s because the thing you are told you’re supposed to be doing – or the thing that you’re telling yourself you’re supposed to be doing – isn’t actually, what you’re supposed to be doing?

I wanted to go to space as a child. I thought that would be the coolest thing. Then I took my first alone as an adult plane ride and realized that we are literally floating in space, and at any time the planet could fall, without ever landing. – Devon J Hall

I can’t go to space. I’m not a bird, I’m a friggen human and despite my stonerations, I can’t actually fucking fly.

So no, I’m not going to space, if I really wanted to go to space, I’d do whatever it takes to get there, body-mind AND soul together. But I have wanted since i was 5 years old to be a writer. To have an interesting life, I did that I did both of those things.

Siddharthas Restaurant, Vancouver BC – Photo Credit, Devon J Hall

This is one of my favorite photos of Vancouver, BC. I went into the restaurant, just to see what it looked like, and to give them a love letter because I love this mural so much. It’s got so much beauty, and every time I see it, I feel like I’m seeing a picture of home.

It feels like a painting of a place I could have been one day, or might go in the future, and it reminds me that there is beauty and color and art in the world. I say this because I live in Surrey, BC, and they painted over all the murals in our town. There is little color here except for green and gray, and lots of browns.

Orange for the football team of course, but that’s about it. There are no giant colored murals to show us a world that we haven’t seen, nothing to inspire us to believe that there is a world outside of Surrey because Surrey wants to believe it’s the center of the universe. No, I’m not kidding, it’s one of those artless cities with a gallery in the center, that only people who can afford to shower get to go.

I want to build Loud Mouth Brown Girl here because I want the world to see that Surrey is filled with art, and inspiration, that beneath the surface of the brown, green, orange, and gray, there is red, yellow, blue, and purple, but I don’t want to fucking live here.

I can count on 1 finger the number of times I’ve seen an LGBTQ2S+ Couple holding hands, outside of a pride event, I lost count of the number of people who wanted to take a picture of me, but didn’t want me to post theirs in case family or friends who didn’t know they were out, saw the evidence.

It’s heartbreaking that this city doesn’t celebrate love the way that it should be considering how much it’s changing and growing, and that’s why I work so hard on Loud Mouth Brown Girl and so little on keeping an organized space.

Organizations can wait, making sure that people know it’s okay to love themselves, and each other, unapologetically, can not. I am tired all the time because I am the one screaming “let’s go, let’s get excited,” meanwhile the entire is dumping on my mood.

Our mayor was arrested and charged with disturbing the peace by lying and saying a protestor ran over his foot, he’s changing the RCMP to the Police status without really knowing what the fuck he’s doing, and hundreds of people are still living on the streets and in the forests without adequate support.

Meanwhile, there are a dozen brand new beautiful condo buildings filled with hundreds of brand new people who have every intention of adding to and changing our city without really consulting those of us who came before. Phew!

No wonder my brain is tired. I am stressed out by a world that I’ve been neglecting to talk about, for, or with, for years, because I just couldn’t focus on the insanity that is this town, and now my brain’s like “Oh, remember your why?” Yeah, I do.

I remember that my mission isn’t just about making Surrey Safer, it’s also about adding beauty to the city the way my friend and sister artist Deirdre Pinnock knits signs and hearts on fences around the city of Vancouver.

I want people to remember the Wolf Pack the way it used to be before drugs and guns became a part of our lives, I want them to remember Surrey Crew, a pack of loud, obnoxious funny kids who hung out and partied together and met up at the bus loop because it was the 1 place we all knew how to find drunk or sober.

The point I’m trying to make is that when you remember WHY you want to do something, it’s easier to get passionate about it. It’s easier to fall in love with the idea of doing whatever it takes to accomplish the goal. When you’re less interested in the end result, or if it doesn’t benefit you in a way that is inspiring, you’ll let it fall to the side so that you don’t have to do it.

That’s fine as long as you’re not disappointing someone or letting down someone. Whether we like it or not the responsible steps have to be taken so that we can get to do the fun stuff, so if it means doing the laundry, cleaning the living room, taking out the garbage, do the thing, so you can do the thing you want to do later.

At some point we all have to come out of the cave…right?

Sending all my love,

Devon J Hall

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