Tuesday, November 11, 2008

"The End of the Airplane Journals?"


Nov. 11, 2008

I flew into Montreal 2 nights ago. The International Coach Federation is going on all week, man it’s been a whole year since Long Beach ICF conference…that was Halloween last year, more than a year ago! I remember seeing Wu Tang that time! Brilliant. The Executive Coaches Summit went down Monday and Tuesday and it was here that I previewed the Airplane Journals documentary. It went over really well actually…it took me two whole years to film it, and the last few weeks to assembler it. It still has some tweaking work to be done but I feel that it really had a clear message; executive coaching and the coach approach helped me grow my business from a single operator to a full time staff of 6, plus a few contractors and interns over a period of less than two years. As I explain in the documentary, I in no way feel that I have found my success yet, or as it is written (maktub) in the Alchemist , my “Personal Legend”, but the journey I am on has proven to be fulfilling and adventurous, so much so that it keeps my heart alive.

It is not the destination, it is the journey…that cliché has been a motto of my life, one that I have understood from a very young age. The first time I realized it is when I built my tree house with a few of my best friends, it took us about 5 years to build it into its perfect completion. Building the tree house kept us outside, kept us active, kept us young. When the tree house was finally completed we had no use for it…the journey had ended. This continued all through my life from restoring my old VW vans and taking apart and rebuilding my motorcycles, to producing and editing my documentaries. The process of producing a documentary is so thrilling for me, but the completion is anticlimactic. I will watch my own work two or three times, but have no use for them after that. It is a strange way of life but it is one the God and again referencing The Alchemist, “The Soul Of the World” has bestowed upon me to realize my personal legend.

I have referenced the Alchemist in this post because I started reading it on the plane ride to Montreal, I am now a few pages away from finishing it. This is such a soul strengthening book, an adventure that I can learn from. The passage that I love the most is as follows;

“…because I don’t live in either my past or my future, I’m interested only in the present. If you can concentrate always on the present, you will be a happy man….”

“…life will be a party for you, a grand festival, because life is the moment we are living right now.”

Paulo Coelho has written many books that inspire, The Alchemist is the one that has kicked me in the butt and brought me back to the place where I can be reminded what my life purpose and philosophy is. My life is the life of a young boy building his tree house, building it bigger and better every year, continually creating, and adventuring until the sobering day when the adventure is over and the goal has been realized.

The Personal Legend

The Airplane Journals has been such a great experiment in celebrating adventure, recording history, and inspiring myself and others to try to live life to its absolute fullest. Many times I feel that I am not a good steward of the life I have been given, rich with blessing and opportunity, but it has been this journey over the past 2 years as I have written this blog on countless airplanes criss-crossing the world, growing in experience, and meeting people of all backgrounds and inspirations. I love people, I love nature, I love life. Love and the Soul of the World is something that I need to (step back and breath) think about more often than I do. Last night I spent the night with my old brother from another mother, Fun Pete and lovely Lindsay. They found a piece of paradise in the woods just on the outskirts ofMontreal. Fun Pete was my cabin mate in the Caribbean when I worked with Celebrity Cruises. The Zen and peace that came with waking up to trees, the sounds of nature, water…brought me back to what I feel my personal legend is…connection with creation. Connection on every level from nature to spirit to life. I bounce in and out of enlightenment (mostly out) as I live this busy and thin ice life that I live. My heart tells me to jump in the river without knowing if there are any dangerous waterfalls or rocks to head, just jump in with faith…that is how I have found myself living. I would not have made any of these realizations if I didn’t take the time to ponder and use my time on planes to write this journal. There are so many other experiences and adventures that I want to write down so my baby “Peanut” will be able to read about when he or she gets older, and when I loose my mind, I will be able to use this as a tool to bring me back to a “present” of the past, which is today, November 11th, 2008; Remembrance Day. Today I close the Airplane Journal and will begin to start a whole new adventure in self discovery. Give praise and thanks to the Most High.


Thanks for hopping on board with me, following my blogged life! Please watch the documentary that coincides with this blog. The Airplane Journals will be available early in the new year (2009), stay tuned.

Also I will be continuing to blog, the Airplane Journals has been a great experience and I hope that you, the reader, will continue to follow, and see how my grammar and spelling improves! Ha ha

"Back to the Base...Ideas Festival, Kardinal Sinners"


“…Lets re assemble”. Any Fat Tala fans out there? Memories of driving down route 9 from Calais to Bangor, aka the “Airline”. Those where the days when fat was spelled with an “F” and Tala meant “the BEATS”!

Back to the base because a lot has happened since Cannes. A lot of regular stuff. Stuff that doesn’t really need to be mentioned but I will anyway cuz that’s what I do, I ramble, and when I am at an airport it looks like I am writing something kinda important to my fellow travelers, me and my new blue Argyle sweater, very self important you know, oh and my new London shoes and tweed jacket I bought on our last Antichrist episode filming in England. I only capitalize the Antichrist because it is a name, not because the Antichrist deserves a capital A. Alberta beef deserves a capital A because Alberta is a province, and we capitalize province names.

We filmed 3 more segments, the final ones, for the Antichrist episode. We filmed this deadly death metal band called “Thy Flesh Consumed”. Their drummer’s kick drum is faster than a machine gun, wicked band, literally! Ha-ha, they would take that as a compliment! We where supposed to fly to Norway and film Gorgaroth; the black metal band that burns churches and embodies the spirit of the Antichrist fashions. Apparently we blew the budget in Laramie when I was abducted, so we couldn’t afford to send us to Norway, so we got the local boyz from Thy Flesh Consumed to discuss religion and metal, and what the idea of the Antichrist really is.

We filmed them in their studio as they where recording their latest album, then checked out their jam space which completely took me back to the old days of jamming at “The Local” on King Street in high school, every room was a different band playing and practicing at the same time. Everything from our band “Playdough Fish” jamming Tea Party and Zeppelin covers, to Rooster Soup playing hippy Rock, to Hemlock playing progressive art rock and punk and death metal bands in the rooms between. That was back in the days when the Saint John music scene was at its height...wow, what memories, every weekend we would put on live shows there with headliners from across the country and even the world playing all ages shows in our gritty smoked filled, puke stained venue that we called “The Local”. The Local was the Wiesel Shoe Shop years before, you may remember me mentioning in a previous blog the project I produced with Gary Davis, whose family owned and ran the Wiesel Shoe Shop. His son Anthony, Mike Long and I and others put these shows on back in the day, had a great time doing it as well.

BACK TO THE PRESENT. We also had the opportunity to film at the Cathedral in Halifax. We interviewed the priest there about the Catholic Church’s stance on the Antichrist, it was a cool perspective. The Father there leans more towards the naming of an age, a time that is represented by the name of the Antichrist. Interesting theory, one that I didn’t have a hard time dismissing. We finished production, the Vision series is now complete.

Over the few days that I was home, which where only a few, I had a chance to check out Google Alerts. A very cool program that sends you email notification anytime a word or phrase that you predetermine shows up on the internet. I decided to type my name in to see if there are any other Hemmings’ out there that where of interest! And there where!!! There are a ton of Hemmings’ around the world, mostly in the UK, that are amazing people! From TV producers, actors, journalists, doctors, scientists, and my favorite…LLOYD HEMMINGS! A Reggae legend! I emailed Lloyd, he is an old Trench Townrocker from the Kingston Jamaican ghettos. He played with Bob back in the day, I found great recordings of him that date back to the early 70’s. My bred-ren! My cousin! So Lloyd calls me on my cell phone last week as I was driving back toSaint John to edit Airplane Journals with Andrew. He now lives in San Diego and plays mostly in Southern California. We had a great conversation about reggae music, being “cousins”, working on projects in the future, it was great. I really want to meet him sometime. He blessed me in the name of Salassie I, Ras-Tafari…if there is one thing I want to learn from Lloyd is the truth and deepness of the Rasta beliefs. They mirror mine so closely, except I don’t understand the part about Haille Salassi being the 2ndcoming. I want to better understand that part of Rasta belief.


Last Wednesday (today is Sunday) Jessica and I drove fromHalifax to Saint John. Obama won the night before! PRAISE JAH! Wow, I am truly relieved, I now hope he can handle the mess that the Bush Republicans made, man what an embarrassing time in our history. I wonder if Bush has any idea of how much he fucked up the world scene.

I spent the day with Andrew as he was in an editing frenzy trying to get the Airplane Journals documentary ready for delivery which was this morning so I could take it and screen it in Montreal, time is tight! That night Jess and I went to St Andrews to the “Ideas Festival” which was a venue with a bunch of real amazing panelists, discussions etc about the creative industries, the future politics etc etc. Thinkers, politicians, idea people where all there. It was a great experience actually and everyone had the same feeling of hope with the previous night’s results. Hemmings House was a major sponsor of this event and we where proud to be part of it. We filmed all of the key notes for the Ideas Festival. My friend Tim Coates who put the whole event together is also the lead on the 21inc. leadership organization that Jessica is involved with.

Jessica and I stayed with Jamie Steele at Salty Towers for the night. The next day we bolted back to Halifax, the following morning I hit the road again to Eskasoni Indian Reservation in Cape Breton for the filming of the first Kardinal Sinners episode. It was quite the experience finding the reservation, we got lost, it took us 6 hours to finally get to the location. The venue was PACKED with kids, it was rowdy and loud, just the way a wrestling match should be! But where were the teen and the adults? Not sure…the place was packed with involved kids, it was cool. I didn’t understand the amount of 7 year olds with chewing tobacco, but that’s a whole other discussion. By coincidence this reservation is the same one that the young boy who narrating my Melting Lands documentary was from! Sadly we were unable to reconnect.

We checked into a slummy but perfect hotel in Sydney. Shot some interviews in the cloudy room of the young wrestlers…it was good to see them again, these where the guys we shot Wrestling Reality with. Peter, Mike, Titus and the legendary Bushwhacker Luke (from old school WWE fame) where at the Delta bar causin’ a raucous. It was funny hanging out with the Bushwhacker…he is one of the highest paid wrestlers in the history of the business, and he likes to lick people’s faces…no kidding. Here we go, round two, the final event? Hope not…not yet anyway, I hope this series is a knock out and we take home the belt (the one made of plastic, not platinum of course).

"Sail Away Captain Paul...Peanut Hemmings"

November 9th, 2008


I am writing this foggy early afternoon from the Halifax Maple Leaf Lounge preparing for my trip to Montreal to finally release the “Airplane Journals” documentary that I have been working on since I started this blog which goes by the same title. As far as I know this will be the last flight I take before 2009 and I feel it is an appropriate time to close the Airplane Journals off with the premier of the documentary at the ICF Executive Coaches Summit tomorrow. My flight home I think will be my last post in this journal. I think it will be appropriate to start a brand new one to start the New Year.

I must first make mention of the passing of Captain Paul. If you have been a reader of my blog you will have read about some of my Caribbean adventures aboard the “Avontuur” tall ship sailing the seas with cargo from South America and throughout the islands, trading by the power of wind, muscle, and strong mind.

Captain sailed off into the next life this October 4th, 2008. He was an incredible man, and had a ridiculous impact on my life, on my love of adventure, on my hard work ethic, on my philosophies, and on my love for the open seas.

Charlene Hamley, the lovely woman who hooked me up on the ship in the first place sent me a book mark that she lovingly put together in Paul’s memory. On it reads;


I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel's kick and the wind's song and the white sail's shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea's face, and a grey dawn breaking.

I must down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.

I must down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull's way and the whale's way where the wind's like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick's over.

By John Masefield (1878-1967).

Once I find my Avontuur Journals I will be sure to transcribe them and post them.

Thank you Paul for having such a huge impact on my life and on the lives of all who cam in touch with you!


The Circle of Life has once again shown itself in a timely fashion. Coinciding with the death of Captain, Jessica and I found out we are PREGGO!!! Yes there is going to be a little Hemmings! If it’s a girl I hope for the names Irie or Kaya…If a boy Noah, or Jude! Some have rolled their eyes at these suggested names, but I dig them! I especially like Irie and Kaya, Irie cuz everyting is Irie, and Kaya because it’s a beautiful name, and it’s a great Bob Marley tune, and because the meaning in several languages is beautiful. (It is also a slang term for ganja in Rasta! Ha)

We are praying for a healthy baby, I am stoked to be a dad! Send us positive vibes and prayers please!!! November 9th is today’s date and Jessica is over 15 weeks now! Our due date is May 5th. Again, hoping and praying for a healthy little Hemmings. A few blogs ago I mentioned that I wasn’t drinking alcohol anymore, well this is why!!! I am going to try to go dry for the length of Jessica’s pregnancy. I broke my dry spell when I was in Cannes (responsibly of course!), so now I have bent my rules so that I will be dry anytime I’m in Canada! Ha ha.

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