Threads: Off the Cuff

todayApril 21, 2014 56

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Written and Produced by: Monica Solis

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    Threads: Off the Cuff

Click here to download this episode of Threads.

With a new year comes new resolutions. But they’re not that new. These are resolutions we’ve been making for years. While most of these are great things to aspire to, a lot of them are made to fit society’s notion of an ideal self. Why do we never hear of resolving to be ourselves?

Our current culture is about sharing everything – from shared statuses to re-tweets and re-posts. Do we even remember how to express ourselves on our own?

I’ve compiled advice from  people of all walks of life from my former THREADS segments — a “To Thine Own Self Be True” mix tape, if you will. I didn’t keep most of these words of wisdom in my segments last year, yet I couldn’t quite forget them. So this is my mix tape to you. Today on THREADS, OFF THE CUFF – former THREADS guests dish some words of wisdom about knowing and being yourself.

Track 1 – Claudia Andrea Rodriguez, a young Iraq veteran and artist, on your survival instinct:

Claudia A. RodriguezAs humans, your breaking point is a million times further than you could ever think or imagine.

– Claudia Andrea Rodriguez


Rodriguez on tapping into your artistic self:


Claudia Rodriguez…Being an artist is being someone who still has the humanity and the softness to absorb other people’s emotions, colors, sunsets, sunrises – people who can still feel.

– Claudia Andrea Rodriguez

Track 2 – What about using your talents to channel the source of your feelings or inspirations? Here’s actor Jean Marc-Barr, who had the chance to play the role of author Jack Kerouac, in the film Big Sur.

Jean Marc-BurrYou know, when I was in university in 1978, I read On the Road, (by Jack Kerouac). I came from a very Catholic military background. What Jack was writing about was all the taboos that I didn’t know about, and he gave me the courage to explore. I think doing this role confirmed, for me at least, I followed my heart; and in following my heart, I’m in touch with a magic that no one else has.

– Jean Marc-Burr

 You’re now on Track 3 – Marine Corp. veteran and Texas State senior, Melissa Martinez, on your toughness:

Because of my experience in the Marine Corp., I don’t get insulted very easily. You grow a really thick skin, really fast. You have to, in order to survive.

– Melissa Martinez

 And on using your toughness to stand up for someone:

I would defend somebody, even if I didn’t know you.

– Melissa Martinez

 Track 4 – California-based film director Ron Judkins on a self-empowering message that he wants you to see in his film Finding Neighbors:

Sam, in the movie, talks about disappearing, and there’s a speech that he gives that goes ‘I’m doing all I can to keep talking and not disappear.’ The film is a message to all of those who are on the verge of disappearing.  Don’t disappear. Your voices are really important.

– Ron Judkins

Photo Credit: IMDB
Photo Credit: IMDB


Let’s call this Track 4.5 – You may be happy to know that Sam, the protagonist in Finding Neighbors, well, he has a sort of breakthrough. It reveals part of the whole beauty of this self-realization notion. So once more, here is Judkins, the film’s director on just that:

“And at the end, he finally just has to break through and say ‘To hell with it. I’m still gonna do what I want to do, I still have a message, and I’m still alive! And that’s the bottom line – is to be alive.”

– Ron Judkins

 Track 5 – Finally, we heed the wise words of Gloria de Leon, co-founder and director of the National Hispanic Institute, on knowing where you come from and what that means for you:

My recommendation to everyone is – start with your family – you’d be surprised what our parents did, what they were involved in, what their thoughts were. The point is who are our ancestors? Know yourself, know your family, be proud of who you are, because when you root yourself in that sense of power, then from that point forward, nothing, nothing is ever going to shake you.

– Dr. Gloria de Leon

It’s been a little over 30 days people, just do you! If you do you, you can make your own story. Then, make sure to send that story to me, Monica Solis. Tell me your stories of personal trials and triumphs, and I may get to tell those stories on our airwaves.  You might just be someone’s next inspiration. You can email those stories to me at storiesthatbind@gmail.com.

– Monica Solis, KTSW 89.9 FM

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