Category Archives: Documentary

Mushpa + Mensa in the 21st Annual Cucalorus Film Festival 10×10

 

Last week we went to Cucalorus’s opening night party.

The next day I got the flu.

The next day we made a movie.

The next day I was in the ER.

The next day I hurled all day.

The next day we were at the Cucalorus 10×10 Screening and CONNECT Presenters Party.

This was my last week and this is the film we made with our great team (Brianna Okamoto, Josh Stowe, Andy Nielsen, Hillary Scott). I wasn’t sure I was going to make it, the movie that is, but when you have a dream and are given an amazing opportunity you push through it all to get there.

-Mushpa

Freeheld – Love is Love

 

Here’s the skinny on Laurel Hester. She was a 23-year veteran of the Ocean County prosecutor’s office, where she worked on a variety of cases, when she was discovered she had stage 4 lung cancer (Stage four (IV) means the lung cancer has spread to more than one area in the other lung, the fluid surrounding the lung or the heart, or distant parts of the body through the bloodstream. Once released in the blood, cancer can spread anywhere in the body, but it is more likely to spread to the brain, bones, liver, and adrenal glands.). She was one of the first women to achieve rank of Lieutenant in her department and was greatly respected by her fellow officers.

While in Ocean County, where she earned the rank of lieutenant, she
worked behind the scenes on a number of high-profile cases, devoting
most of her career to organized-crime intelligence. She helped develop
information that investigators in New York would later use for
successful prosecutions of mob figures there.

She met her girlfriend in the early 2000s, Stacie Leigh Andree (born 1975) who was 19 years younger than Hester and worked as a car mechanic.

The cancer then metastasized and spread to her brain, leaving her with little time to live. Laurel lived with and jointly owned a house with her registered domestic partner, Stacie Andree, who would not be able to afford mortgage payments upon Laurel’s death. A married heterosexual with Hester’s years of police service would be able to pass on pension benefits to a spouse, but this privilege was not accorded to same-sex domestic partners in Ocean County, NJ.

Hester and Garden State Equality Founder and Chair Emeritus, Steven Goldstein appealed to local authorities to change this policy, and was supported by the local Policemen’s Benefit Association. Instead, in a private meeting on November 9, 2005, the five Republican county freeholders voted against the proposal, with freeholder John P. Kelly arguing that it threatened “the sanctity of marriage.” On November 23, a rally of supporters rallied by Steven Goldstein gathered to protest the county’s inaction.

On January 18, 2006, an impassioned videotaped appeal by a weakening Hester from her hospital bed was shown at a meeting of the freeholders, who then met with county Republican leaders in a teleconference on January 20. The next day, the freeholders announced that they were reversing their stance, and would meet on January 25 to extend pension benefits to registered domestic partners.

She died exactly a month later after sending the committee the video plea on February 18, 2006, in her home in Point Pleasant, New Jersey.

There is a new movie about Hester’s fight for equality coming out October 2nd starring Julianne Moore and Ellen Page, also titled Freeheld.

Love is love.

– Mushpa

We Got Into the Leaf Festival

We got into the Leaf Festival. I was unaware of how much I was pulling away from faith, mysticism and the Truth until I watched this video. I have been worrying about bills, money, and bullshit and forgetting about miracles, beauty and truth. Logistics are a lie. I am blessed and amazing and God is good. I’ve got nothing to worry about.

Everything is better than okay. I got into the Leaf Festival and have nothing to fear but fear itself.

:]

-Mushpa

Mushpa y Mensa Super Summer Update

Hello Mushpa y Mensa Super Fans!

Yes, you see right, it’s Mushpa y Mensa’s Super Summer update, after a few months of silence. We are happy to say that in the last three months, Mushpa y Mensa have begun their “Gypsy Market Life”. Already, on this journey, we have met quite a few amazing people, like the folks at Seaglass Salvage Market, Brooklyn Arts Center, Beacon House Inn, and Satellite Lounge to name a few. We have also danced and tasted many sweet wines at the Duplin Winery’s Main Squeeze Music and Wine Festival, as well as met dozens of new, fun people at the annual Azalea and Strawberry Festivals in North Carolina. ;] We even partnered up with Wilmington’s Earth Day Alliance and enjoyed a wonderful Earth Day Celebration at Hugh MaCrae Park.

It’s been surreal so far.

It’s amazing what faith, love, encouragement, and a little help from our friends can do. In terms of our little cottage industry, we are, as you say, busting a hump. We are constantly checking ourselves on how we can make things better from our art, to our business, to our life.

We have actually just updated the “Photos of Our Peeps” page on Mushpa y Mensa’s site. We added a photo uploading tool, so you can upload pictures of you in our organic tees, wearing our amazing jewelry, hugging our lavender filled plush pets, or even just keeping your hands cool with one of our coffee cozies. :]

And in terms of our Art? Well we keep on bringing to life tons of ideas in our head. For example, we recently created 3.5 new shirt designs. A cool Octopus Olivia with an Anchor Tattoo on her forehead,as well as R6: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Replenish, Reflect, Reimagine inspired by Earth Day.

We also have new organic Pima cotton relaxed fit tops that are flying out of the truck. Here is an example of the Pima tops with one of our new designs, Argema Mittrei, a female moth. Lastly, we spruced up Robot Girl and added a cute heart. All these designs we print for the ladies, the gents, and of course the smallest people around.

Mushpa y Mensa have also been focusing on custom shirts that have been selling off Maya so fast we don’t even have time to list them on our Etsy shop!

Spread the art, spread the love.

A few questions answered…

Where can I find the Art Truck?

Follow us on Twitter @mushpamensa. We are constantly posting when and where we will be. There is also an events page on our site, www.mushpaymensa.com/events we keep updated, but Twitter is best for the most up to date information.

We are doing some art shows, markets and fleas, but are hunting to find good spots to park around town. We are partnering up with cool people like the folks at the Beacon House Inn on Carolina Beach and Satellite Bar and Lounge in Wilmington.

And for all the natives and people in the know, since we are new in town, feel free to hit us up at [email protected] or our contact page with any ideas where to park, festivals to do or whether you’d like us to rock a party or event with you!

Are you going on the road anytime soon?

We want to explore the grounds of NC and the surrounding area, so we will keep the max to weekend trips. But worry not, we will definitely be making it into the mid-west and west-coast! Maybe even an occasional trip to NYC sooner than you think!

If you have any questions about anything, make sure to ask! We love to hear from you all.

Until the next super exciting Mushpa y Mensa’s and Maya, Magical Mobile Art Machine update we say good day!

With lots of love,

               Cara and Maria Emilia

                                                             a.k.a.

Unlocking the Truth

My friend Sabrina school me on amazingness once again. I love these 6th graders (here, now they’re 7th graders). Beauty and Truth aka Malcolm and Jared.

Always remember, you bully people and you’ll end up homeless. Truth.

Rock on!

-Mushpa

Mushpa y Mensa’s Magical Motor Machine Makeover!

In conjunction with “Care-About-Mama-Earth” week we are launching Mushpa y Mensa’s Magical Motor Machine Makeover (a.k.a. Our Super Cool Kickstarter Project)! Yes!

We will make this short and sweet as all the information you may want or need to know about Our Magical Motor Machine Makeover is here. You may also click on our 3 minutes and 33 second amazing docu-drama above to find out what we and this project are all about.  :]

Mushpa y Mensa’s Magical Motor Machine Makeover is something cool, different, and amazing. It is a way to connect with people all over; a way to find, have and give hope to our fellow humans…and there is some fantabulous functional art to take with you as well!!! A win/win situation.

Go see!!!

With much love.

— Mushpa y Mensa (Cara Elaine and Maria Emilia)