Friday

Football, Film and Flipside... and Happy New Year


The Flipside, Football and Film.... and Happy New Year to you....

As y'all know, I've spent the past 8 years or so filming people under deep hypnosis. I've reported what they've said in my books "Flipside: A Tourist's Guide on How to Navigate the Afterlife" and film "Flipside: a Journey into the Afterlife," and "It's a Wonderful Afterlife" volumes one and two.  Basically, I've been reporting what people say under deep hypnosis, a technique pioneered by Michael Newton ("Journey of Souls").

I report that when the research is examined, we find reports that are consist across the spectrum of people who have had a near death experience, out of body experience, or some other consciousness altering event.  I've been gathering stories about what people have said about the afterlife, including stories from people who claim to communicate with those on the flipside, in my new tome, "Hacking the Afterlife" which will be out sometime in the new year.

Couple of stories came to my attention recently - and it's with regard to people getting a "sense" that events that have happened in their life might have had more than meets the eye to their occurrence.  Some folks consider this coincidence - but if you're into consciousness studies, you'll find people like Harvard's Gary Schwartz PhD and UVA's Dr. Bruce Greyson are writing and studying "coincidence" from a scientific point of view. But is coincidence really random? Or is it possibly part of a larger fabric of who we are as human beings? On a quantum level?

Yesterday in the LA Times, there was an article about a kicker for Stanford. 

Can Conrad Ukropina give Stanford a closing kick? He's done so, memorably





Conrad Ukropina needed a strong leg, good technique and timing, supreme concentration and confidence and endless hours of practice to become the kicker he is today, the starter for a Stanford team that will play Iowa in the Rose Bowl on Friday.

He also caught a few breaks. Literally.

Ukropina, who grew up in Pasadena, about four miles from the Rose Bowl, enrolled at Los Angeles Loyola High in 2008 and won the starting quarterback job on the freshman team.

But a week before the first game, Ukropina got spun awkwardly during a tackling drill and sustained four fractures in his left forearm, an injury that sidelined him for two months.



"That was a bummer, but I had just made 100 new friends on the team so I really wanted to stay with them," Ukropina said. "I had a cast on but went to practice every day. All I could do on the sideline was kick. I would literally kick the ball into a fence when I was bored. I kind of discovered a hidden talent."



Ukropina played soccer but had never kicked a football before suffering that broken arm. In his first game, near the end of his freshman season, he made a 44-yard field goal. By his sophomore year, he was kicking for the Loyola varsity, and by his junior year he was training with a private coach.

During the summer before his senior year, Ukropina won the kickoff, punt and field-goal competitions at Stanford's kicking camp, which ultimately led to a scholarship offer.
Now look at him: A redshirt junior on the sixth-ranked team in the nation, he's made 17 of 19 field-goal attempts this season — including a dramatic 45-yard walk-off kick to give Stanford a 38-36 win over fourth-ranked Notre Dame on Nov. 28 — and all 61 of his extra-point attempts. He might even have a shot at the NFL.

"Isn't it funny?" Ukropina said of his fortuitous break. "I don't want to use the word fate, but there was some sense that that's what was supposed to happen."

Ukropina spent 2013 and 2014 as the backup to Cardinal career scoring leader Jordan Williamson before moving into the lead role this season. He thrived in the spotlight, kicking a pair of field goals in each of Stanford's two wins over USC and his memory-maker against Notre Dame. "He's made some big kicks for us this year," said Pete Alamar, Stanford's special-teams coordinator. "He's handled the stage well.".....

 
Rose Bowl Flipside: "Isn't it funny?" Ukropina said of his fortuitous break. "I don't want to use the word fate, but there was some sense that that's what was supposed to happen." This is a story about a kid who broke a bone, it kept him from the goal - but that break put him on the path he was supposed to be on. 

We can't see how setbacks, breaks, loss, problems in our lives turn us in the right direction - unless we look closely. I've been filming people under hypnosis for eight years saying the EXACT SAME THING. "That setback, that tragedy, that loss was the reason for my change, my life gaining meaning, my victory." Once we take "Time" out of the equation (easy to say, hard to do) we get a glimpse of our lives as a brilliant story conference, with highlights and low-lights planned in advance so we get the most out of it. 

Not every mark is hit, not every goal is made - but we do our valiant best to make it the best damn show anyone's ever seen us do. Make the most out of your new year by looking into these highlights and low-lights as steps along the path that lead you to victory. And enjoy the Rose Bowl too.

Even the actress who stars in the latest Stars Wars film had a "Flipside" feeling that she should audition for the lead in the new film:



"I emailed my agent that I have this really weird feeling; I really feel like I need to audition," recalls Ridley." 

"My first few auditions really didn't feel good, but my last audition suddenly felt like something clicked," says the 23-year-old Londoner.

A version of this story first appeared in the Nov. 13 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
Before landing one of the most coveted roles of the decade, Star Wars: The Force Awakens heroine Daisy Ridley had become accustomed to disappointment. In the months leading up to her first audition for Episode VII's female lead, the 23-year-old actress' confidence was shattered. Just one week into a gig with a small workshop, she was told not to bother coming back. And then after nabbing a lead role in the E4 series Youngers, the part was cut down to just one day of filming. "I was kind of used to things not happening, so I just felt the whole way through [the Episode VII audition process], 'I'm going to lose the job. They're going to find someone better than me,'" she recalls. Even her first two Star Wars auditions were underwhelming — at least from her perspective. Remarkably, Ridley kept getting called back, and something clicked in that final audition, propelling her past the horde of hopefuls. Now, she says with a degree of satisfaction, "I've got opportunities I didn't have before." That's an understatement.

Though the CAA-repped actress is well booked with Episode VIII, which begins shooting in January in London, and then Episode IX, she will soon be familiar to a globe-spanning fan base and presumably have her pick of roles and directors. 

But even after seizing the role of Rey, Ridley continued to face rejection. She recounts being turned down for an unnamed film role in the past year after a sweat-induced wardrobe malfunction in front of a casting agent. "I'm sure the star they cast is much better than me," she muses. Perhaps it's that self-deprecating air that helped win over Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams and the Lucasfilm brass. And whether her career trajectory is more Harrison Ford or Hayden Christensen, Ridley has a backup plan in play: She's begun taking courses for a psychology degree. And of course, she's staying put in London, where she lives with her family and her deaf and blind dog named Muffin. "I love to come to L.A. to visit, and then I like to come to rainy old London because it's home," she says. The Hollywood Reporter talked to Ridley about her impossible ascent from obscurity to Next Gen Hollywood force.

How did you land the part of Rey?

I had heard about the role quite a while before I auditioned, and I emailed my agent that I have this really weird feeling; I really feel like I need to audition. Then months went by and the same people were reading for it. But I still really had this feeling of needing to read for it. So I emailed my agent again for an audition. I had four or five auditions over seven months, and it was a very emotional time. My first few auditions really didn't feel good, but my last audition suddenly felt like something clicked. You're so desperate to get a role, but I felt like even if I didn't get it, I did a good job, I'd done myself proud.".....

Feelings of what we should do, or shouldn't do. And then we follow our instincts and realize our path is exactly where we are, where we were always supposed to be.



 We can't see how setbacks, breaks, loss, problems in our lives turn us in the right direction - unless we look closely. I've been filming people under hypnosis for eight years saying the EXACT SAME THING. 

"That setback, that tragedy, that loss was the reason for my change, my life gaining meaning, my victory." Once we take "Time" out of the equation (easy to say, hard to do) we get a glimpse of our lives as a brilliant story conference, with highlights and low-lights planned in advance so we get the most out of it. 

Not every mark is hit, not every goal is made - but we do our valiant best to make it the best damn show anyone's ever seen us do. Make the most out of your new year by looking into these highlights and low-lights as steps along the path that lead you to victory. 

Happy New Year!

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