astudyof contrast

a blog by ryan tauch

New Year, Better Us

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You are more. We all have those moments where something within sparks and we become super inspired, super motivated to take on whatever change or task it may be. And then maybe over a few months, days, hours, or minutes that spark you once had fades away and you find yourself back in the same place you were before--nowhere. Then it becomes this ongoing cycle of goals, delays, detours, and ultimately, excuses.

And you know what, that’s okay. You fall and get back up right? and as long you have that yearning to become a better person or do something good, you’ll have that chance. It’s when you stop trying and stop striving; that’s when it becomes a problem.

--

If I were to put this year into one word, it would be…Aware. I know what makes me tick, what my flaws are, my genuine qualities and overall, I have a sense of who I am. Now if you ask me where do I see myself in 5 years, that’s another story. But my endeavors are most certainly there, and I do indeed intend to finish a lofty project of mine. Whether it be good or not, that is to be determined but if it’s coming from me…you know its quality. *humble brag*

Consistency & Confidence. That is what I lack, and that is what I am aiming for in this New Year. CC, let’s call 2018…my Chanel year.

-rt

What’s in a moment?

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A little over a year ago I was having lunch a top the CN Tower in Toronto, drinking a latte and eating an overpriced sandwich to enjoy the Views Drake has spoken so fondly of. As I sat, an elderly gentleman came by and asked if he could join me. I looked at him and said…. “sure”. He sat down putting his bag in the spare chair, iPad on the table and introduced himself as Wilhelm, where he then proceeded to pass me his business card that really just said his name and email in a late 90’s flare. I told him my name and we began to chat.

Wilhelm was in the Russian and Czech army for 40 years and had been in Toronto for about a week, recently just coming back from gambling a bit in Niagara Falls. We talked about our travels and being that I had just been in Rio a month ago, that was my main source for stories. When I told him I was Cambodian, he got excited and told me how much he loved Camboja and how beautiful the country was; I told him I’ve yet to visit unfortunately. Also, keep in mind his English was very spotty and a lot of hand gestures were used between the both of us.

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He fiddled with his iPad the whole time and asked me if I could help him connect to the Wi-Fi, he wanted to make a Skype call. He slid it my way, and I had it set up in no time; He then made a call to his lady friend back in Russia. He was so excited to see her face and her voice sounded so full of joy getting to talk to him. I didn’t understand anything they said but I’m sure it went something like “Helllo, I miss you, look where I’m at, look at the View” He pressed the iPad against the window to give her the best view possible and then he pointed the iPad my way and I gave a little wave; she smiled and waved back.

And in this instance, I knew this was a moment I’d remember. It was sweet, unexpected and simple. Life is too short to not share a moment with someone, even if that someone is thousands of miles away. Whether friend, lover, or stranger. We live to share.  Share our stories, our ideas, our thoughts, experiences, and knowledge. So while you’re out there living, don’t think about the past or future…too much, appreciate the moment you’re in now. 

-rt

If you're good enough, you will win

28. So here I am, definitely in my late 20’s now and at a point in my life where I feel/know I’m on the verge of something wonderful. I’ve had three different “careers” in a span of 2 years, one like the other and one not like the others. Through all of this, I’ve realized that work goes a long way. But not only that, you have to be efficient, open-minded, fearless and willing. When you put that into your work, that’s what separates the winners and losers.

There are no road maps for life, there are no true steps to follow. We live the lives meant for us, I say this a lot. My mom texted me the other day and in that text she said “I missed when you were a little boy, son. I wish I could have done more things with you but I was so poor” I teared reading that, I’m tearing now typing this. I told her “Don’t feel bad Mom, don’t regret anything. We live the lives meant for us. Because of you, because of our life, I am the person I am today. You gave me everything I could ask for, food on my plate, a roof over my head, and unconditional Love.” Verbal communication isn’t a strong suit in our family, also might be an Asian thing as well…. missing that “speak up” gene.

Regret gets you nowhere, being stagnant gets you nowhere. If you want to get somewhere you work at it, you work for it. There are far more rags to riches stories than there are riches to riches stories because people who have nothing know what work is and aren’t afraid of it.

Last week I had a taste of one of my life long dreams and the saying of “if you do what you love, it won’t feel like work”, never felt more prominent. Although I was dead tired, and exhausted beyond belief because I haven’t worked that hard in years, I never felt happier and overall, fulfilled. I’m looking forwards to seeing what my late 20’s brings me because I know that work pays off and that I am good enough to win.

-rt

2016, my Love Letter to you

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The moment you walked into my life, everything changed. Never had I been so enthralled by someone solely through conversation. Your stories, your adventures…it made me want to be more, do more.

Everything before April of this year is a blur. The worst feeling is to feel like you’re coasting, that you’re not progressing, not being challenged enough and before then; I was coasting. A life with no purpose, is not a life to live.

And as quickly as you came into my life, you left. For a second, I felt like I dreamt you up, that you were another one of my elaborate dreams that felt all too real. Life has this way of humbling you and I was quickly hit with doses of reality, from personal issues, to family issues; it all hit me at once. But as you hit your lows, you can only go up, all the way up. “So you thought you figured it all out? Nope.”

This leads me to the latter part of the year. I went to the Olympics, took a couple of smaller trips in between, I started a new career, and purchased my first car. There was something about that Olympic experience that will live within me forever; I constantly have withdrawals whenever I think about it and that is what life is about. Having those moments, ones that you want to relive, that become memorable experiences that ultimately, changes you.

As much as this year was a whirlwind from national news, worldly news, Deaths of Pop Culture Icons and so on, I didn’t want to dwell on that. If anything, all of this makes you realize that you only have so much time in life. The more you dwell, the less you live.

This New Year, I aim to be more confident and more consistent. I have a lot to say and a lot of projects I want to pursue. If I fail, at least I tried. This will be a Champagne year.

-rt

Developing a Narrative

I’m not like all my other friends, I’d rather get lost in conversation until we fade into each other again.

I wanted to slow dance these summer nights with you and then the summer ended and here we are now. I’m the type of person that gets lost in the moment and for a while, that moment was you. I think because I am so optimistic, so enamored with this thought of how Love should, could, would be; I tend create these falsities. I overreach for something that never was, I try to overachieve for things that never were. And partially, it’s my fault. One, for being scared. Two, for not being vocal enough. Those are one in the same, really.

I always say, you have to be your toughest critic and that may be my downfall. To me, I’m so far from where I want to be. Don’t get me wrong, I’m closer and closer every day and I feel I’m putting in the groundwork for my Champagne year to come. But because of this, I stray away from the frontlines and don’t pull the trigger. I’ve always been able see both sides of the story, I’m just trying to find a way to write mine.

All I want is to have the same effect on you, as you do on me. 

Rio 2016: Arrival

“I don’t know how to put into words everything that has gone on the past 48 hours, it has been one long whirlwind to get down here but well worth it. There’s nothing like being able to experience something only a handful of people will ever experience in their lifetime. Rio 2016 is just that.” -August 7th

Nervous because of all the stories and media scares told to us since booking the trip, I don’t think any of us knew what to expect but excitement for the unknown trumped all that-- for me at least. I remember walking out the airport and just seeing a whole other world I was eager to explore. The first thing you notice are all the military men standing guard, driving by the truck loads…not a big help to put those nerves to ease. But soon you look at your surroundings and notice the hills and foliage surrounding the place. Every place in Rio has a view.

We took an Uber from the airport to our Airbnb’s and got settled in. Where do these Americans go when they land in a foreign country? To find a peace of home, so off to the USA House we went. The USA House was located right on Ipanema, not a bad place to start. Now that I think about it, I started the trip and ended the trip in Ipanema…we’ll get to my love for Ipanema later. The USA House is one of the Houses that are closed off to the public unfortunately, so the only portion we were able to get into was the store part. If you’re a lover of USA gear, this place is heaven and slightly dangerous to your pocket book… do people even say pocket book anymore?

Right outside the House and along Ipanema just so happened to be where Cycling was passing through and we were fortunate enough to catch out first Olympic event for free and just hours after landing! You can’t write it up any better than that. Although, it only lasted for about a minute or two, the excitement felt for those minutes were well worth it and something that I will remember forever.

Finding a place to eat was next on the agenda. T.T. Burger is where we ended up (Brasilians apparently are big into burgers), it was this happenin’ little burger spot that yelped recommended. The line never stopped while there, I think it actually just got longer. The food was good but not great, I come from Houston, Texas, good luck trying to impress me with a burger! We then set off to walk Copacabana, all 4 kilometers of it. There are tons of people walking about, tons of street vendors trying to sell you things and the beautiful Copacabana as the backdrop. One thing I had to find while at Copacabana was where they were filming the Today Show, I’m a low key avid watcher in the mornings and I knew they were out here somewhere! It turned out the set was all the way at the far end of Copacabana, so it took all 4 kilometers to get there.

After finding out where it was and when they started filming, Mission: Get on National Television was put into full swing.

The ReUp

“This week has really tested my patience and over all sanity. Thankfully, I’m a pretty optimistic person and understand that even though I’m at a really low point right now, I can only go up.”
--I wrote that July 19 of this year and from then, I did only go up.

From that moment till now seems like an eternity. During that time, I wanted to write but what was the catalyst for my creative endeavors no longer existed. I just let it go and life happened, the way it usually does. And I think through it all, I’ve become even more humble--if that’s even possible.

So let’s get to it, during that time of struggling creatively, astudyof contrast, was born. This idea, this something, is what I feel is the core of everything I am and everything I want to eventually create. The whole plan isn’t thought out, it’s still a work in progress as is everything in my life. But it’s a start. Right now it is this blog. I’ll give you the whole idea and meaning behind it at a later date if it isn’t obvious.

I recently came back from Rio de Janeiro where I attended the 2016 Olympic Games, I say recently but it’s been about two weeks now. It was an amazing experience and I’ve been trying to figure out how I want to express it all. I’ve decided to share it in a series format as short stories. I think one long rant (much like this post is becoming) wouldn’t do it just. And something else that took me off guard is that in about a week, I’ll be starting a new career.

I’d like to thank the one or two people who took the time to read about my life and future ventures, it’s much appreciated. I’ll be back soon rather than later this time. The end of the year stretch will be something amazing!

-rt

Be Interesting

There’s this phrase that goes, “Pretty people stop being pretty if they aren’t interesting”. Its something that becomes more evident as I meet more and more people. As cliché as it might sound, beauty does fade--so what’s left is everything else. Personality.

Interesting doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve had to travel the world or be exceptionally fantastic at something. Interesting, is being uniquely you and not an imitation of anyone else. It is whatever grabs your attention that you feel you relate to, that you feel you can share, cultivate, and inspire. What makes you tick.

Everyone grows up differently and being able to channel your youth and all past experiences into your right-now, that’s something of value. You may not feel that its anything worth sharing but sharing differences is what helps society grow as a whole. It’s true that your environment shapes you, so let it and have an opinion about it.

Getting to know someone should be fascinating, leaving you wanting to know more and not based purely on the falsities of appearances. Because after you get pass that, you’re only left with your thoughts, opinions, and words to build whatever is next--a back and forth gamut of human emotion.

The moment you realize how you are different from everyone else, is the moment you become beautiful.

-rt

A First Grade Love Story

It was on the playground that I remember her the most, in first grade, to be specific. We were on that jungle gym dome made of triangles. I remember at recess we held hands as we ran and then climbed to the top. There she whispered in my ear and told me something I'll never forget, "I like you" she said. The other kids soon started to gather around. One of my classmates climbing up saw this and asked what she whispered. She promptly told him, "It's a secret". This was our little secret.

She was a child model so she would miss class often due to whatever work she booked. Whenever she was in class and we could get together and play, we would. Blocks, puzzles, numbers--you name it. There's not much you know about when you're 6-7 years old but I knew I enjoyed my time with this girl. It was a connection that was pure and innocent.

Our field trip that year was to The Zoo. In class we made T-Shirts to wear with paint and animal sponges--and of course we made ours together. She picked up the elephant sponge and blotted a blue elephant on my shirt along with a heart she made with her finger. On the bus ride there we sat together and she told me something that would break my little heart. She told me she was moving to California. I don't remember much after that, I think we had few days left before the school year ended so we just spent as much time together as we could.

This has always been a memory stuck in my head, it’s something that I remember so clearly even though I was only 7. It was the first moment I realized what it meant to care for another. Sure, I was young but like all first experiences; this experience would shape a lot of my views today. And that is why I’ll always remember my first “Girlfriend”, Sarah Sharp.

-rt

Talk to me Pretty

One of the things that I find most enjoyable in life these days is a good conversation. Ironic, since usually I’m more reserved and typically shy away from people. But when you’re with the right people or right person, conversation is everything. The ability to lose all track of time and be unaware of anything around you, can feel like a space or high all your own.

These feats are rare--for me at least, that is why I treasure them. So what makes up a good conversation? For me, it’s a number of things…

·      Genuine connection is one of them; the interaction between two people has to be real and authentic. Vibes do exist and sometimes people don’t vibe with one another, its okay, just keep it moving.

·      Being comfortable, you’re a different person amongst strangers than when you are with friends or family and that’s the energy/ease you have to bring. Of course, that relaxed feeling takes time but if the situation is right, that feeling will automatically take over.

·      The ability to listen, and I mean actually listen. Taking time to analyze and put thought into what another person says may seem like a no brainer but I feel that we as people tend to be selfish. Caring only about our own interests and not others. Learn to listen with not only your ears but your mind as well. Listening will always take you a long way.

·      And finally, Substance. This is what turns a good conversation into a great conversation. That concrete subject that interests you both, and your ability to add something of value to this moment.

We are all people just wanting to find other people to connect with. Whether it is to share experiences, get something off your chest, give advice, learn something new or whatever. Everyone wants to be a part of the conversation. 

-rt

*Lips inspired by Jessica Rowe

Motivation Reminder

Lately, I’ve found myself in this state of being content with a routine. It’s a feeling I’ve grown too familiar with and I absolutely hate it. That is a huge reason I’ve started whatever this is. I know being content or comfortable is not the worst thing. For some people it is enough, but for me, it’s not something I want.

When you’re young, you have all these dreams and ideas of how you’ll become rich or how you’ll change the world. As you get older, you realize it’s the execution that matters, not the idea. If you do not put in all your heart, energy, passion into what ever you do, you’re not going to go far.  Things change, people stop dreaming, and life just passes us by.

And sometimes, the most difficult thing is taking your own advice, it’s easier to hear it from someone else or read it. There’s no formula, or recipe to follow in order to reach your highest potential. That defining moment can come at any time in your life. The important thing is to never stop believing that you are enough, and you have the ability to do what ever your heart desires. All it takes is action. Now that’s the hardest part, that’s what separates us.

Bottle that feeling and capitalize. 

-rt

Being a Hopeless Romantic as a Guy

I’ve always been a “Hopeless Romantic”, I don’t know if it stems from me growing up around all women or if it’s just something innately instilled within me (probably the latter) but I truly believe in Love. When the thought of someone can make you actually Feel…That is what Life is all about. That is what we live for. When a person can make you want to laugh, cry, or scream…all in a day; that is being alive.

Because I’m so invested in this thought of Love, people around me will confuse it with me being “picky” but I cant help that I have values, standards and base my relationships on pure feelings. I just don’t want to waste my time, or anyone else’s. There’s nothing worse than when I see two people together that have no spark and no chemistry. I may be indecisive on a lot of things…many things actually but I do know the type of person I want in my life. She values life for what it is, appreciates family, loves genuinely, seeks adventure, and is…my soul mate. Jessica Alba, you know, before the whole husband and kids thing.

Now being a guy and having a sensitive side can give you a bad rep, but I’m here to tell you to take it in and own it! There’s nothing wrong with having feelings or showing feelings. There’s this stigma that men have to be tough, that they don’t know how to care, and are not in tuned with feelings but I’ve always tried to be the exception. I am that exception. You can be tough but weak at times and care and know how your actions affect others. There are enough assholes (excuse my language) in the world that get all the attention; it’s time for the genuine guys to get some recognition.

I cant tell you how many times I’ve day dreamt of magical moments or seen myself as the lead character in the countless number of “Romedies” I’ve watched and Love Stories I’ve read. Don’t get me wrong; I know relationships are something you work at and that magical moments are rare. It’s a marathon, not a sprint, and I’m in it to win it. It’s that want for true Love that makes me part of the man I am and I’m proud to admit that. This world needs more Love.

And of course, theres this part of me hoping that my future wife is reading this right now and to her I say...you were worth the wait.

-rt

Overview.

This is my love letter to you. Being verbally expressive was never my thing, I’ve always been in my head, in my thoughts and at the ripe age of 27, I’m slowly starting to learn how to care less.

I’m using this forum to create more, to write more…to express more. I think as we get older, trying new things and breaking that routine becomes extremely difficult. Why change? You know what you like, you know who you like, stick to it. If change is growth, lets never stop growing.

I could never consider myself as an artist, more of an enthusiast and I’m enthused by anything and everything. Content will be across the board, one day you may get a picture, another day you may get a video but today you’ll get these words. You'll see that I'm most vulnerable that way.

Enjoy.

-rt