An Exploration for Information

On our class trip this past Wednesday (October 14th 2015), we boarded the school bus and made our way to the Vancouver Public Library. While peoples’ goals for this trip varied, mine was to find information about both my eminent person and my ZAP project. I am pleased to report that I found both.

We started the day with a solo spot in the city where I watched one particular driver attempt at a u-turn. By attempt, I mean he failed miserably. He began to turn just as the light was turning green and causing him to block all the incoming traffic. On top of that, he was unable to properly drive his massive car and had to drive back and forth a total of 4 times to reorient his car. When he finally thought he made the turn, he drove his car up on the curb squashing an old drink container and spaying his car with an unknown milky substance. I, on the other hand, was rather enjoying myself, and I think that might have been my most enjoyable solo spot to date.

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Following the solo spot, we spilt back up into our groups (bus 1 & bus 2). My group, bus 2, went down to the used book store a block away. Meanwhile, the other group went to the library. While the book store was very cramped for twenty-some people, I was able to squeeze through to my section and find their one available copy of “Lady Gaga Critical Mass Fashion” by Lizzie Goodman. I have yet to start seriously reading the book, but I am very excited to go through it. The illustrations and formatting are very appealing and well done, and I had the chance to briefly skim a couple paragraphs while I was in the store.  I can tell this will be a very good resource for my project.

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About an hour later, we walked back to library to meet up with the other half of our class for lunch. We had the freedom to choose between a variety of different places to eat. Nicole and I decided to divide and conquer. I bought the sushi, she bought the bubble tea, and we split it. It ended up being very fast and efficient leaving me time to mingle, and skim over some more pages of my new book. Since we were already seated in the library food court, we were able to separate again from bus 1 and go straight into the library to search. Here I was also very successful. I had pre-planned the night before and looked up books I was interested in taking out, so I already had my barcode numbers prepped. I was able to find 2 books on  Lady Gaga and a few scripts for my ZAP project, leaving me with enough time to order a mocha before we left.

With my books in my bag and a mocha in my hand, it was time to board the buses and head back to school. I feel like I accomplished my goal for the trip, and I was already able to use one of my books “The Rise and Rise of Lady Gaga” by Maureen Callahan in my eminent intro post. I am very excited for this project and for Night of The Notables. It will be a different experience this year from last, and I think having chosen someone I am very passionate about (Lady Gaga) will make it very fun.

Mother Monster – Lady Gaga

In just over one year, Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, born on March 28, 1986 in Manhattan, New York, U.S., went from being a struggling performer in New York’s Lower East Side to a global pop icon, known as Lady Gaga, the polar opposite of Stefani. Summed up by her stage motto “I’m a free b****!”, she showed the world that it’s okay to be a misfit, and you don’t need to conform to societies rules. As they say, rules are meant to be broken, and thats just what she did.

She struggled through her teenage years with bullying. She wasn’t accepted because her style and personality didn’t follow the norm. “I used to do these really big Evita brows,” Gaga told Rolling Stone in 2011. “I used to self-tan, and I had this really intense tan in school, and people would say, ‘Why the f*** are you so orange, why do you do your hair that way, are you a dyke? Why do you have to look like that for school?’ I used to be called a slut, be called this, be called that. I didn’t even want to go to school sometimes.” But, the survival of high school just added to her drive to become what she wanted and to show all the bullies she was better than them. In 2008, ignoring all judgement from the people around her, she started working with Rob Fusari on her first album. Little did they know, that album would start her multi-platinum career.

Following the release of her debut album, The Fame, featuring “Pokerface”and “Just Dance”, which earned her, her first Grammy Award nomination, she appeared on many red carpet event sporting dresses; including, the bubble dress, the origami dress, and the classic meat dress. She used fashion and makeup as her outlet to express herself.

“At the end of the day

you won’t be happy until you love yourself.”

– Lady Gaga

In 2012, with the release of 5 new albums, The Fame Monster, Born This Way, A Very Gaga Christmas, and 2 remix albums, Singles and Remix, Gaga used her fame to create the Born This Way Foundation alongside her mother, Cynthia Germanotta. The mission being to support youth wellness and empower youth to create a kinder and braver world. Since starting the foundation they have reached out to over 100,000 youth people through  the “3 R’s”: real stories, research, and relationships. There is also an immediate help line for youth struggle with any issues from, body image, to LGBTQ questions, to sexual abuse, to alcohol and drug addictions. Aside from her efforts with youth through her foundation, she also interacts with her fans through Little Monsters, an online website used as an outlet for Gaga’s little monsters (fans) to gather, create, share, and inspire. It is a safe place for all her little monsters to be free and expressive without judgement.

“I want my fans to know that I’m there for them.

I want them to see very part of me.

I am never going to leave them.”

-Lady Gaga

On top of that, Gaga is an outspoken advocate for LGBT. “I very much want to inject gay culture into the mainstream” she said in an interview in Out Magazine. From marching at pride parades to launching her own anti-bullying foundation, Gaga has repeatedly fought for LGBT. In March of 2011, Target refused to support LGBT charities groups to balance donations the company had made to an antigay politician, causing Gaga to walk away from the opportunity to release the exclusive version of her album “Born This Way” throughout their stores. “Part of my deal with Target is that they have to start affiliating themselves with LGBT charity groups and begin to reform and make amends for the mistakes they’ve made in the past … our relationship is hinged upon their reform in the company to support the gay community and to redeem the mistakes they’ve made supporting those antigay groups.” she told Billboard magazine. This act, along with many others, showed her support for the LGBT community, and led her to being very influential advocate.

She continues to inspire those around her. By being herself, and being the weirdest, quirkiest one in the room she hopes to make everyone else feel comfortable in their own skin. If their not the weirdest, what do they have to fear. As mother monster, she’s wants her little monsters to bloom and blossom into unique beings that aren’t afraid of the world. She wants young people to know that being you is the best thing you can be.

In terms of where I want to go with this project, I would like to learn more about Lady Gaga and what she stands for. I would like to go further into her life and find out her drive and modivation for all the things she’s done, and show everyone else how she has influenced our society for the better. I want to take this assignment as an opportunity to show another side of Lady Gaga that some people may never have seen before and all the things she has contributed to our world aside from her music. I hope that along with myself, everyone else will get a better glimpse into her life, and I can prove that Lady Gaga is indeed a very eminent person.