ISSUE 4 // SUMMER
Mazing magazine is vision put into practice. It’s a talented group of writers, artists, and idea-makers who want to inspire our generation to pursue creativity in spite of every obstacle, so that’s exactly what we’re doing. Through late-night brainstorm sessions and draft after draft, Mazing is the embodiment of its mission: celebrating young adulthood in all its unsteadiness. Finding inspiration amidst the chaos. Within these pages, we hope you find the motivation you’re looking for, to reach, to create, to hang, to roam, and maybe even survive. And we hope what you find here makes your life outside the page so much more.
HERE’S TO THE TRULY MAZING CONTRIBUTORS
www.mazingmag.com | @mazingmag
MIKEY DIGGS | WRITER + PHOTOGRAPHER
ALEJANDRO SANTANA-VALLARTA | WRITER
JANELLE LYNNAE | WRITER
KARIS SYKES | WRITER + POET
BLAKE EBERT | WRITER
KATIE SWALM | WRITER
MYCAH BURNS | WRITER + PHOTOGRAPHER
KEANA MCGRATH | WRITER
ESTY BAIN | DESIGNER
ANTHONY GUER RA | ILLUSTRATOR
BETSY FREEMAN | WRITER + ILLUSTRATOR
TIFFANY LAMBERT | PHOTOGRAPHER
KATHERINE KWONG | WRITER + POET
RACHEL GILWIT | WRITER
CHAD SYKES | WRITER
EMILY TURNER | WRITER
NATASHA “POSHY” SCHUYLER | ILLUSTRATOR + DESIGNER
FAITH HANNA - WRITER
DAPHNE VAN DER OORD | PHOTOGRAPHER
MADISON NEIMER | WRITER
CORI DUNTON | WRITER + PHOTOGRAPHER + POET
MILLS BROWN | ARTIST
RYAN SHOPE | WRITER
MAGGIE SWOFFORD | POET
COVER IMAGE | Tiffany Lambert EDITORIAL SUPPORT | Ryan Shope, Max Dunn, Talia Schuyler CREATIVE SUPP ORT | Betsy Freeman, Natasha ‘Poshy’ Schuyler MORAL SUPPORT | You Know Who You Are
Summer, for me, has always meant family road trips. It’s a long-held, deeply-revered tradition that, even as a kid, was always just as stressful as it was exhilarating. For weeks ahead of time we browsed the book stores, snack aisles, hotel websites, and touristy brochures, painstakingly planning our trip to wherever it was that year. Finally, we would vacuum-pack the car with luggage and squeeze ourselves between it, nestling into our seats for an early start. It only took KATHRYN SCHUYLER | EDITORIAL & CREATIVE DIRECTOR
a few hours for that first gust of anticipation to wear off as we drove through some stretch of Arizona desert, the minivan already oscillating between too hot and too cold, and already reeking of Doritos.
Somewhere along the way, the irony of a road trip as a form of vacation finally dawned on me. So little actual relaxation is involved. Between the seat soreness and the quick runs into gas station bathrooms, road trips don’t mean a lot of chill. In fact, it’s an exorbitant amount of time and emotional energy for one day in Telluride. But if you’ve ever seen a deer look back at you over the hush of grass with a snow-capped mountain range in the background, you might understand a bit of why we did it.
Making a magazine goes much the same way. It isn’t time-efficient or expedient (hello, haven’t we ever heard of blogging?). It takes months of preparation for a fleeting week of sales and compliments. The joy of the act wears off in the first few hours, and pretty soon your room (ahem, home office) starts to reek of Doritos. And yet, when I look at this star-studded table of contents, I feel like I’m making eye contact with something mystical.
Issue 4 is marked by a dedication to wonder, to exploration, to curiosity. Our contributors draw our attention to what we haven’t noticed lately, whether that’s our grandma’s unshared stories or the way our surfboard rides under our feet. They prompt us to ask more, and more deeply of ourselves. They guide us into the tiny adventure of trying something new, or rethinking something usual. They share little pieces of their expanding world.
Perhaps one of the most earth-shattering moments of one’s first job out of college is when you look at the calendar and realize summer vacation has disappeared. And in its absence, we are asked to make rest, and exploration, a part of our everyday. On behalf of all of our dedicated contributors, I hope this issue is an inspiration to that attitude. This summer, let’s spend more time on our way to new things. Let’s spend more time with our eyes open to the window. And let’s definitely indulge in some road trip snacks.
With all my best, Kathryn
TA B L E O F C O N T E N T S
Approaching Cross-Generational Conversation Chad Sykes
• • • 17
20 Musts for Social Justice Madison Neimer
• • • 36
To “Be Yourself ” When You’re Everyone and No One Katie Swalm
• • • 54
Taking Your Work Home With You Cori Dunton
• • • 73
Basic Drawing Faith Hanna
• • • 25
Pendulum, A Poem Cori Dunton
• • • 63
Summer’s Daughter, A Story Emily Turner
• • • 64
On Building a Surfboard Alejandro Santana-Vallarta
• • • 70
Static, A Poem Maggie Swofford
• • • 16
Crafting Community Tiffany Lambert
• • • 20
Listening for Meaning: Why You Should Care About What Other People Say Katherine Kwong
• • • 42
10 Hangs Under $20 Kathryn Schuyler
• • • 52
Springtime Checklist, A Poem Karis Sykes
• • • 57
Journey Toward Vocational Calling Karis Sykes
• • • 30
Trust Your Gut: An Interview with Laura Johnson Kathryn Schuyler
• • • 38
Should I Stay Or Should I Go? Dialogue From My Haunting Career Question Betsy Freeman
• • • 46
Millennials And Success Mikey Diggs
• • • 66
Give Me All the Bacon and Eggs You Have Rachel Gilwit
• • • 10
Alone, A Poem Katherine Kwong
• • • 24
3 Quick Tips For Next Level Fitness Janelle Lynnae
• • • 48
Pursuing Financial Independence Ryan Shope
• • • 68
A Local’s Tokyo Mycah Burns
• • • 13
Small Town Hero With An Empire State of Mind Blake Ebert
• • • 34
The Art of the Weekend Getaway Keana McGrath
• • • 58
Somewhere Else, A Poem Katherine Kwong
• • • 62
Ocean Beach, San Francisco, A Poem Karis Sykes
• • • 76
PHOTO BY CORI DUNTON
GIVE ME ALL THE BACON AND E G G S Y O U H AV E
/// WORDS BY RACHEL GILWIT /// ILLUSTRATION BY BETSY FREEMAN ---- 10
Ground beef. Parmesan cheese. Eggs. These were the items on my
snacks/meals before leaving the house, as if I adopted this fear of
grocery list after two weeks of a gluten free and vegan diet (GFV), or
becoming “food stranded.”
what my friend Cameron endearingly referred to as the “Rhino” diet.
DIET CONSISTENCY As a Registered Dietitian (RD), I am often asked my thoughts regarding diets that exclude major food groups. The short answer is, “that depends on the thought process or belief behind omitting X, Y or Z foods.” There are scientific, ethical, and health purposes behind each person’s diet. In the hospital setting, I educate patients on diets that would be viewed as extreme, but correlate to medication doses and are specific to health conditions that depend on compliance. This has often prompted me to think about my own ability to adhere to a specific diet if needed. In this case, it was not a need but a want. As an omnivore, quitting dairy, gluten, and meat cold turkey was a personal challenge that could potentially produce notable outcomes. Full disclosure, I had aimed to stick to this diet over the course of four weeks. Unfortunately, after two weeks, multiple social contusions, and an unexpected health issue, I had to add the turkey back to my diet.
Meals were comprised of mostly vegetables. Incorporating protein sources was challenging, as I could no longer rely on eggs/yogurt for breakfast, or chicken/tuna for lunch and dinner. Social media introduced me to new staples. Products worth noting include soy chorizo, nutritional yeast, (adds nuttiness to sauces/dishes much like parmesan), So Good yogurt (coconut based), and Kate Farms cream cheese. I made favorite dishes using GFV alternatives such as Alfredo sauce and beer battered buffalo cauliflower bites. Highly recommend following both @hotforfood and @nomyourselfvegan, two bloggers who are influencing vegan cuisine.
EATING OUT/HOSTING Every week I host dinner or “family meal” for close friends. Making a separate dish for myself was unnecessary, as I only needed to adjust the
COST Although the majority of my groceries were produce, which cost substantially less than animal products, the volume needed to stay satiated was unexpected. Animal product prices vary depending on how much freedom and diet quality the animal had throughout its life. The GFV alternatives to these (meat substitutes, spreads, breads) come with their own hefty price tag and their shorter shelf life meant more frequent grocery runs.
protein source to align with GFV.
A few times I felt socially exiled for my dietary choices. Lunch one weekend required that I get a vegan Chipotle bowl, while I looked on with envy at the In-n-Out burgers my friends devoured. An ice cream outing escalated quickly, as my friend Alex, who attended one of my dinners that week, had failed to listen to the reasoning behind this diet. When I asked the server what vegan flavors were featured he blurted out “Now YOU have a fake allergy? People need to push through their intolerance, it’s all in your head.” Deciding whether to still call him a friend.
I found myself idling is aisles, reading food labels to ensure even unsuspecting items were compliant with the diet. Meal prepping,
Ordering food at non-vegan restaurants was challenging, as it was
drafting menus and executing new dishes consumed my personal
rare a menu item was GFV without modifications. Maybe it was my
time and slowed my mornings before work. I had to pre-pack enough
insecurity, but I felt a degree of judgment and annoyance from waiters for asking questions. Annoyed waiters aside, I had an opportunity
to try two vegan restaurants. While I was never sure what was being ordered, everything was delicious and surprisingly filling. One restaurant corrected me for saying, “I’ll have the pasta Bolognese,” instead of Bountiful, the dish’s featured name.
FEELING I had vivid dreams and woke up hungry as hell. I found myself hangry if I went more than an hour without eating. The t-shirt, “I’m sorry for what I said when I was hungry,” holds relevance now. My day was centered on my next meal, and in order to sustain my energy levels during work and pre-workout, 6-8 meals were consumed daily. I had the urge to mention my diet all the time, giving validity to the stereotype that if a person is gluten free, vegan or Crossfits, they tell you without being asking. An alarming side effect was hair loss, likely from lack of protein, vitamin D and iron; otherwise, at the end of each day I felt oddly healthy. Saying no to otherwise normal foods required discipline, forethought and intention. Gone was the absent-minded snacking. Everything I ate tasted exceptionally better because I spent time enhancing the flavor of each ingredient.
THOUGHTS AS AN RD Had I continued on this diet longer than two weeks, I believe I would have physiologically adapted to the change. However, I would have needed to supplement key minerals and vitamins that are not biologically available in vegetables alone. I craved meat during these weeks and resented all those times I said no to bacon. Without a clear medical reason, I see value in an inclusive diet in order to gain the most nutrients your body needs. That being said, gaining more awareness of the artificial and unnecessary ingredients hidden in foods has given me new insight.
A L O C A Lâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; S T O K Y O
/// WORDS AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY MYCAH BURNS
Standing at Shinjuku station looking for someone we’ve never met with
friends. As her friends became our friends, they practiced English and
no way to contact her, in a sea of people speaking a language we don’t
we practiced our Japanese: “ichi beriu kudasi” (one beer please).
speak, I was quite sure we would leave defeated. We moved around, attempting to make ourselves seen, me as a blonde-haired, clearly not
After an evening of delicious food and bitter beer, Bobby and I knew
Japanese woman, and him as a dark-haired yet certainly not Japanese
we wanted to spend more of our second anniversary trip with our new
man. Finally, finally we saw someone walking towards us, waving.
friends, so we made plans to hang out the next night. And then the
This seemed promising! She approached and introduced herself, “I am
next night, and the next day. By the end of our ten day trip we were so
Asuka, sorry sorry I could not find you.” At last, we knew someone in
sad to leave our friends and this country we now love. We left with a
the city of over 9 million.
note saying, “I am soooo happy meet you in Tokyo. I miss you. Please don’t back. You’ll come Tokyo next time.”
We followed her lead and stepped on the escalator of orderly people, standing tall and perfectly lined up, one after another, flush to the
Two years later we stepped off the subway at our stop, only to be
right side. Stepping off deep in the subway station onto perfectly
greeted by the bride and groom, holding breakfast and snacks...for
clean floors, we lined up with everyone else trying to get somewhere.
US. Back in Japan to photograph Asuka and Sakota’s wedding was
Completely crowded yet surprisingly silent and shockingly clean, we
absolutely a dream come true. Not having any idea what to expect, we
waited. Then the sickly sweet female voice came on over the loud
followed the bride and groom through the gates of a zen garden. After
speaker, letting us know a train was approaching. We sped off to our
capturing the ceremony, 10 course meal and second reception, we said
destination, not knowing what our destination even was, yet trusting
our good-byes and made plans for the next day to meet up with the
our new guide, whom we had met briefly via Facebook thanks to a
newlyweds for their honeymoon in Kyoto!
mutual friend. Experiencing a culture alongside local people becomes about the Trailing behind Asuka like children, we did not know where we were
lasting relationships—not the stereotypes or cool sites or tourist spots,
or where we were going and not understanding the language around
but the daily life. Whenever we travel, we do everything we can to
us. Entering small shops, she introduced us to her friends who were
make connections with local people ahead of time and throughout
all so kind and welcoming. We walked in the dark, down a charming
our trip. Traveling is so much more than taking the perfect picture
alleyway that was sprinkled with lights, delicious smells and unfamiliar
and curating the ideal itinerary. It’s about creatively shaping time and
yet somehow comforting sounds, and we entered a restaurant. Walking
space for life to unfold, to be open to things you would never think of,
up the narrow stairway, we sat around a small table and the waiter
foods you never knew existed, and stories right in front of you.
greeted us with menus. Attempting to blend in, I replied “konbanwa,” good evening. Asuka explained the menu to us and we told her we love all food and would eat whatever she recommended. Soon we were devouring delicious yakatori chicken and asking all about Tokyo and life in Japan. Continuing to follow her lead, we next approached a tiny open air, stand up bar. “This my boyfriend,” she introduced Sakota, who timidly greeted us, and then introduced more of her
IT’S ABOU SHAPING T FOR LIFE T
T C R E AT I V E LY T I M E A N D S PA C E TO UNFOLD.
S TAT I C /// A POEM BY MAGGIE SWOFFORD We don’t have to move toward each other to give pieces of ourselves. Sitting here, your blue eyes point at me and at the tips there’s a spark. When I reach toward it I am shocked— literally—by your invisible atoms jumping into mine. You never know of this occurring—or else you probably wouldn’t allow it— but nonetheless I now own pieces of you. No, particles that were yours are now inherently me. That’s scary, isn’t it: How in the cold the fabrics we wear and are rub against each other, forever changed.
APPROACHING C R O S S - G E N E R AT I O N A L C O N V E R S AT I O N
/// WORDS BY CHAD SYKES /// COLL AGES BY MILLS BROWN
It’s late morning, and we’re sitting across from each other at the
the contested grounds, but on anything else? Card games, sport teams,
kitchen table. I’m halfway through my third Mickey Mouse waffle.
food traditions…anything that can make a connecting point.
Her weathered hands are gently cupping a warm mug of tea. Playing cards are scattered across the table, in stacks and runs and of-a-kinds,
The purpose is not necessarily to agree on everything, but to humanize
documenting the aftermath of another round of gin rummy. “Unless
the other person in the conversation. It’s much easier to harbor hate or
you start planning ahead,” my granny whispers as she leans in close,
mistrust against someone who is a complete “other”. Bridge the gap by
“I’m going to keep kicking your ass.”
sharing stories from elementary school or about Dave from accounting. Connecting on the periphery makes discussing the difficult topics less
Cross-generational relationships can provide such beauty and joy,
and Granny knows exactly how to make me laugh and reflect. But often times, communicating across an age gap will produce more conflict than community. Most have experienced a Thanksgiving meal that turns into a generational argument over politics. Offices and workplaces can fracture into age-defined factions that disrupt collaboration. Without getting to know one another, groupthink can take over and stereotypes settle in.
We need to intentionally seek out and practice cross-generational conversations. Avoiding these difficult conversations can lead to division and resentment. An embracing of the other, differing experiences and all, creates a community of empathy, cooperation, and shared understandings. Communicating across generational lines is rarely easy, but it’s a vital part of any healthy society.
The question then presents itself: how do people communicate in healthy and productive ways across generations, experiences, and worldviews? There is no magic formula, but the answer to approaching cross-generational conversations may lie in taking guidance from how many have begun to communicate across divisive racial, economic, and religious lines.
2. KNOW YOUR GOAL Why is this conversation happening? Who is the audience? A cross-generational conversation is infinitely different between family members versus office coworkers versus an online comment section. Your audience will change the goal of the conversation. Perhaps you want to find out information, defend a certain position, or survive a difficult exchange.
“Winning” is not always the primary objective, but often a goal rests with understanding and connection. The stakes might be higher with grandma because you inherently care how she thinks and interacts with the world. When a coworker approaches you about how millennials are causing some social problem, the goal could to debate amicably but not get emotionally involved. Walking away is an appropriate option, choosing to break and revisit rather than fight and fracture. And always stay away from the comments section online.
3. SPEAK WITH “I” STATEMENTS As a middle school teacher, we are taught to speak with ‘I’ statements with rebellious students. “Little Johnny,” we say, ”I felt hurt when I
1. FIND COMMONALITY Often when public figures ask for two opposing sides to find some common ground, they are asking for a compromise or shared viewpoint on a hot topic. But what if the commonality didn’t need to be based on
saw you throw that pencil into the ceiling. What were your thoughts when you did that?”
As basic as a phrasing can sound, “I” statements put the burden on the
speaker and not the other party. Humans can naturally get defensive when they feel attacked or misunderstood, but a personal feeling or opinion is much less likely to be taken as a threat. “I” statements can promote an open-minded attitude and a willingness to dialogue and work together.
4. GET CURIOUS Beyond just finding commonality, getting to know another person can provide vital insights into their motivations, values, and experiences. A single story can alter how we know someone.
Several years ago, my father-in-law asked great-grandma about any awards she had ever won. Meek and mild great-grandma perked up and launched into the story of how she won the Oompa Queen award and got to ride a horse to school everyday for a year. And no one had ever known! She became livelier, brighter, and more connected in our consciousness because we got to know her in a context other than “old lady.”
Leading with questions has the power to breach walls more effortlessly than telling the other what they should think. Create an honest “road map” of the other’s views and experiences, so as to better navigate the tricky sections of conversation. Curiosity builds bridges, and will make those cross-generational conversations much healthier.
/// WORDS BY TIFFANY L AMBERT /// PHOTOGRAPHY BY CORI DUNTON ---- 20
We’ve all been there—as an adult, the friendship circle slips into acquaintances that you sometimes see but hardly ever have the energy for. You find yourself sitting at home alone on the weekend, scrolling through social media longing for real friendship.
Community is a curious thing. There’s something in all of us, some innate quality that craves it. The desire for it is literally built into us as humans, but often times we settle into isolation rather than crafting that community we so deeply crave. We want it given to us, we want it on our own terms. In our fast paced, fast food, Amazon Prime same-day delivery kind of world, we want friendship to be convenient. We sit on our hands and wonder why people haven’t reached out. We choose to keep our cool rather than opening up and allowing vulnerability to win us a place at the table.
Here’s the deal, friends: community doesn’t happen to us by accident, and often it doesn’t happen over night. We have to take initiative. We have to play our part, and while we’re at it, we have to allow time and space for relationships to grow. If there’s anything I’ve learned so far in my 27 years of life, (I’m getting up there I know), it is that we have to pick up the pieces, the hammer and the nails or the Ikea instructions, if that’s your thing, and build the table of community ourselves. It takes a commitment and a boldness, but friends, this world could use a few more brave souls like us, ya know?
“Somehow, isolation feels safer and more fulfilling than chancing another friendship heartbreak.” There are so many fears that hinder us from taking the leap of friendship faith. We want to be seen as cool, calm and collected. We don’t want to let our guards down. If people got to know the real us or discovered our weirdness it would be game over, or at least that’s what
we tell ourselves. Pursuing community also means making yourself
better. I ended up building friendships and before I knew it, those
vulnerable to getting hurt. Raise your hand if you’ve ever been burned
friendships evolved into a real community. Out of that time I met one
by someone you were trying to build a relationship with? I’m over
of my dearest friends in this world. We stayed close through college
here with both hands raised, and in all honesty, it sucks when that
and she is still my rock almost ten years later.
happens. It leaves us feeling all the fragile feels when the next chance for jumping into or creating a community rolls around. So we get all
It’s funny how that works. You can feel so lost and lonely, that the
timid, we hesitate, and we wait for the perfect climate of community.
idea of being in a fulfilling community seems impossible. The thing is,
Somehow, isolation feels safer and more fulfilling than chancing
most of us are sitting around confronted with the same exact terrifying
another friendship heartbreak. We tell ourselves it’s not gonna work
question: what if I never find my place to fit in? We are all looking for
out, it won’t be like the community we’ve cherished in the past, they’re
friendship and here’s the secret: there’s nothing wrong with initiating it
not going to understand me. Fear stops the possibility of community in
for ourselves. Community is possible, I promise.
its tracks before it ever even began. Let’s be real, adulting is basically another high school, it just swapped
“We are all looking for friendship and here’s the secret: there’s nothing wrong with initiating it ourselves.”
homework, sports tryouts, and prom with taxes, health insurance and meal prepping. Trust me, I get it. Combine the normal fears about community with the busyness and conflicting schedules of adult life and it seems unattainable. It’d be way easier to just head home solo and have that glass of wine. Who has the time to work, exercise, grocery
Back in the day, I went to a private high school outside my regular
shop, keep a clean home and still have energy for a social life?
school district, meaning, freshman year came around and I knew no one. Not a soul. The innocent middle school version of me entered high school expecting to settle into a group of best friends right away, and maybe even find a hottie athletic boyfriend while I was at it. I mean that’s how high school works for everyone, right? Wrong. Joining the volleyball team, I was so happy to even have people to sit down with at lunch, but it was like the friendship Hunger Games out there, and with those girls, the odds were not in my favor. I cried a lot that year, but somewhere along the way, I decided that high school would not be about rejection.
As scared as I was, I was determined to find community. So what if things didn’t fall into my lap? I refused to let that be the end of my story. I started to get involved in other things. I joined clubs, I made connections and got to know the people in my classes. I went to birthday parties when I scored that invite. Little by little, things got
“Allow people to come into the real deal of your life, your messiness, your highs and your lows. It helps us remember that we are not alone in all of this.” We simply cannot allow our anxieties about being rejected or the reality of busyness tie us down and keep us out of the game. We need people who champion us and speak truth to us. People who are there to help move your stuff up three flights of stairs to your new apartment. People who will enjoy that much-needed beer after work or hang out when you just don’t feel like being alone. We need connection and community to bring vibrancy and meaning to our lives. Otherwise, we are all living in a perpetual nine-to-five without much to show for
whether you like it or not, you are not meant to do it alone.
So, do you see someone you would like to get to know or think you would get along well with? Please don’t sit around and wait for them to come and propose their undying friendship to you. Invite them to coffee or grab happy hour with them. Create your own chance at friendship. Allow people to come into the real deal of your life, your messiness, your highs and your lows. It helps us remember that we are not alone in all of this. Honestly, we are built for this, so please don’t let your life slip by without it. Take a chance, send that text, open up your home and do your thing to craft that community.
COMMUNITY DOESN’T H A P P E N T O U S B Y A C C I D E N T.
it. Community is all about doing real, everyday life with people, and
ALONE /// A POEM BY KATHERINE KWONG It’s not a passing thing you know. It stands, very still, matching your every step. Sometimes miles away and at times yards closer. On the edge of every crowd whether of 2 or 2,000.
It waves quietly.
When you turn on the music in your apartment or come home from work: Alone smiles. It hates being creepy and won’t exactly shout at you. But, it may sigh a little when there is noise to fill the silence.
It’s been collecting all the thoughts that fall out of your head every day. It arranges them in mismatched bins prioritizing them And dusting off the especially promising ones.
Alone waits. Waits for that little sigh to escape your lips. Comes, sits next to you and says:
B A S I C D R AW I N G
/// WORDS BY FAITH HANNA /// ILLUSTRATIONS BY ANTHONY GUERRA 27 ----