This is where thoughts become things.

Hi, I'm Daniela. Welcome to my personal lair on the Internet. This is where I write about storytelling, activism, technology and pop culture. Sometimes I post videos. I update my lair when the mood strikes me. Follow me on Twitter for daily updates (@dcap).

Tag : travel

Bicoastal Tales: Spring 2011 SF Work Adventure

I’m back in NYC and predict that this recent trip is worth documenting for future Daniela. I spent the last four months working for Current TV in San Francisco, with a short stint at the LA office. I also went to the Sundance Film Festival in January (my first time at the fest).

What I regret the most is that I didn’t blog or keep a physical journal. Thankfully, I did take many mental notes 🙂 as well as some photos. I still haven’t gone through my 7D cards, but I wanted to share some memories and Droid snaps with you all.

When I wasn’t with my family, I bonded with my flatmates in my Oakland sublet, explored SF — the city I made many trips to on my own ages  17-22 — after work, road around on the BART, and marveled at how much Oakland is becoming this mecca for artists and activists (and noting the permutations of gentrification).

So much has happened in the past four months — I left New York in a long-term relationship and returned single; I discovered a miracle skin product that I am in love with; I defined my future parenting goals; etc. But here are the top 10 highlights (NOT in order of importance) from my trip that I hope are beneficial to anyone who stumbles across this and are curious about what it’s like to make a home for yourself on both coasts:

1. Cali People Vs. New York People

Only after spending several months back in Cali can I finally admit to myself that this stereotype is true: Cali people are most definitely more laid back (generally speaking) than east coasters, particularly when it comes to office personalities in a media environment. East coasters are more direct/cut to the chase and tend to be workaholics who party as hard as they pursue their endless goals. Cali folks like to make small talk, are more likely to go on lunch breaks (a totally healthy thing to do!), and take work/life balance more seriously.

One of the greatest gifts to myself while in Cali was cultivating a stronger ability to chill the fuck out and to connect with different personality styles. I may be from Cali, but I definitely have an – ahem – more “intense” personality than the average Cali person and I appreciated the chance to balance myself out. I’ve promised myself that from now on I am going to eat while at work, take breaks (when possible), and value my own peace of mind just as much as I value my work environment.

2. Salmon Salad At South Beach Cafe in San Francisco

Salmon Salad!!!

I literally ate here about three times a week just to have this salad. It is in my Top 3 foods of all time. I would take a leisurely stroll down Embarcadero and treat myself to this delicious meal. I am actually a little sick of salmon at this point… I’m lying. I crave this salad and hope I can find an east coast equivalent!!!

The only salmon salad that came close to this was the one I had in Utah while at Sundance in January. It was pretty orgasmic too:


3. Nolita Selector, Fruitcake, And The SF/Oakland/East Bay Queer Scene

My flatmate Nolita turned out to be an amazing, intelligent, and charming young woman who also happens to be a talented DJ/photographer/party promoter/Jill of all creative trades (thanks for hooking it up, B!). I never did end up going to any of Nolita’s Fruitcake parties (womp) but we did spend a lot of time bonding in the kitchen and I met her mom, so that’s cool, right? This blurb in OP Magazine describes her better than I could. As does this video from one of her parties:

FRUITCAKE! Saturday, March 19th and every 3rd Saturday @ The Stud Bar, SF from Nolita Selector on Vimeo.

I do regret never going to any of her Fruitcake parties — I saw a bunch of raw footage while she was working with her editor and it looks super fun.

I am hoping she moves back to NYC very soon so hopefully we can collaborate on something together.


On My Radar: Portland Zine Symposium

I realize that it’s been over a month since my last post on The Lair. Sorry! I am always blogging (among other things) for my current gig and actively tweeting/sharing news through other feeds, so admittedly I often neglect this space. It happens.

I am going to be doing a lot between now and the end of the year, but one of the more exciting things for me is representing the POC Zine Project at the Portland Zine Symposium. I’ll be in Portland from August 26 – 31, collaborating with new friends and having lots of fun.

Portland Zine Symposium

When I founded the POC Zine Project earlier this year, I had so many goals that I thought I would have achieved by now. Rather than beating myself up for not meeting them all yet, I am going to enjoy the journey and be happy that a lot of people support the idea and trust that eventually things will come together. In the middle of work, school and my other forms of activism, I can only do so much. Sponsoring folks to attend the event in Portland, tabling, and forming a Facebook community for POCZP is the most I’ve been able to accomplish this year.

I also recently collaborated with For The Birds Collective for an event at Book Thug Nation, where POC Zine Project (Winston and I) gave away free zines and snacks.

Book Thug Nation

You can see more photos from the event on the POC Zine Project Facebook page.

I will have more opportunities to promote POCZP when I am in California from August 1 – 26. I’ll be all over the state, visiting friends and following up with colleagues. The end of 2010 is all about travel; I’ll be in Paris working on a super secret (for now) project for a month and then going to Mexico City at the end of December. I feel grateful for these opportunities and will spread the love/empower others while I’m pursuing my own dreams.

I’ll end this post with a weird video I made the other day:



I’m Going: Back To Cali! (For A Visit) + FreeAgent Love

It’s been a while (in 2007!) since I’ve seen my family on our home turf. This Cali-to-New York transplant has finally saved up enough dough to get outta Gotham for a while and spend some time on the left coast with the people I miss so much.

There’s a lot of history I have missed out on and one 7 day trip isn’t going to make up for that, but I am coming prepared: I’m bringing my new 500G FreeAgent Go.

FreeAgent Go
image via Vector_Transformers’ Flickr

I ordered one the other day on and I’m hoping it arrives in time.

I’ve missed a lot of birthdays, holidays and special moments, so I plan on spending some time on each of my loved ones’ computers, taking some memories home with me via images and videos. If I find music and movies that I like, I’ll be “borrowing” that as well.


I’m going to record a lot of video and take photos while I’m in Cali this time, so being able to dump it all on a drive before I come back to New York makes for easier transfer.

I picked the FreeAgent Go because my primary home computer is a Mac. Although it’s optimized for the Mac, the FreeAgent Go can be formatted to work with both Macs and PCs. It’s sleek and small (I’ve seen a coworker’s and it’s less than six inches wide and under a pound) and it matches my computer. It features both Firewire 800 and USB 2.0.

I tweeted a while back that Seagate should start a social media compaign centered on people who were recently laid off. Many of those folks are using the FreeAgent to quickly and efficiently back up years of data from work computers when they have one day to clear out their offices. That is actually happening in the workforce and there’s a way to talk about that in a sensitive (hopefully funny) way.

Perhaps the angle could be how the FreeAgent made it easier for an individual to transition from one job to another?