What Are Your Favorite TED Talks?

Lately I've been trading in listening to music while I work for TED talks. For anyone who might not be familiar with T(echnology) (E)ducation (D)esign, it's a non-profit that spawned from a 1984 conference with the goal of bringing people together over "ideas worth spreading." TED has inspired thousands of talks and many spinoff conferences (if you're in Seattle, keep an eye out for TEDxRainier, TEDxSeattle, TEDxPuget Sound among others.)

I've got a few favorites in my TED profile, but wanted to share this one by actress Thandie Newton because it's one I watch almost daily. Thandie talks overcoming insecurity from growing up bi-racial and finding beauty within herself.

If you've got any favorite TED talks, please leave a comment with a link to them! I'd love to see what inspires you.

Happy Thursday! Take a break from holiday chaos and enjoy.


Baohaus' Eddie Huang Has a Show & It's Awesome

I love following entrepreneurs on Twitter. They come in all shapes and sizes, and keep me on my toes while inspiring to ALWAYS be who I want to be regardless of who I work for and what I want to do. Entrepreneurs over everything.

I started following Eddie Huang after hearing about his infamous Four Loko Thursdays, which enjoyed a short but mighty run before it (and his restaurant, Xiao Ye) were shut down by the NYPD. This was back when Four Loko was still in its "we're legal but we'll fuck you up" stage, not in its watered-down, Dimetapp-with-some-bubbles current state. I wanted to go to there so bad.

Anyway, I thought it was awesome to see a (cool) Asian-American doing his thang in the restaurant business, so I found his blog and Twitter. Since his General Loko days, Huang has rubbed elbows with Anthony Bourdain & Tom Colicchio, seen Baohaus take off and even found a place for himself among other 2013 TED fellows. Lately, he's been illin with VICE magazine for a short web series called "Fresh Off the Boat." Check out the first two episodes in Taiwan below and follow Eddie on some food adventures around the world on VICE's YouTube.

This one I had to throw in because it features Filipino food:

"I think our generation...it's our job to break the barriers and get people to eat outside their comfort zone."


Seattle: King Tut's Going Strong at Pacific Science Center!

"Everywhere, the glint of gold." - Howard Carter
If you're looking for something amazing to do this holiday season, make sure the King Tut exhibit at the Pacific Science Center is on your list. Whether you're entertaining guests from out of town or looking for something different to do in the city you live in, the King Tut exhibit is a must-see.

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

The Pacific Science Center is currently housing over 100 artifacts from the young pharoah's tomb plus other ancient Egyptian rulers' sites, chronicling over 2000 years of rich culture, opulence and history. I remember doing a major project on Ancient Egypt in third grade around a book on her majesty, Queen Hathepsut. I've been hooked on the ancient civilization ever since, and was stoked when PacSci invited me down for a blogger tour in August.

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

Some highlights you'll see on this tour include: a 10-foot statue that's the largest image of King Tut ever unearthed; the boy king's golden sandals; Khufu (the king whose face adorns the Great Sphinx and commissioner of one of the Great Pyramids); the first CT scans of King Tut's mummy; and Harrison Ford's voice accompanying you through the exhibit on the audio guide.

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

The exhibit runs through January 6th, 2013 and is the last stop in North America before it heads back to Egypt for good. The majority of proceeds from the tour support the preservation and conservation of antiquities and monuments in Egypt, including construction of the new Grand Egyptian Museum in Giza.

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

King Tut_Seattle_Pacific Science Center

Unfortunately, exhibit-goers can no longer take photographs as they go through the exhibit, but it's my pleasure to share the ones I took with you before the rule was instated. You can see the rest on the Fresh Jess Facebook page.


Getting Fresh at The Bar Method Seattle (+ Giveaway!)

A couple of weeks ago, I took a barre class for the first time - and it kicked my ass in a way that no other workout has ever done before.

You can go to almost any gym now and take a barre class. The biggest common thread is that they all incorporate a ballet barre in the workout. What sets The Bar Method apart is the blend of interval training (fat-burning), isometrics (muscle-shaping), dance conditioning (flexibility & elongation) and the science of physical therapy with personalized attention and results.

The Bar Method Seattle

What's all that mean? Basically, a class at The Bar Method is an intensive hour, an extreme bang for your buck and a magnifying glass on what you're doing shone on you by people who know exactly what they're doing.

The Bar Method Seattle

The Bar Method Seattle

That's why we take workout classes, right? If we stayed content in our comfort zone, we wouldn't see results. My time at The Bar Method was tough on me mentally and physically, but left me with the determination to do better. I knew where my bar was set (no pun intended), and I know I can only get better from there. 

At a Bar Method class, you can expect: a warm-up, free-weight exercises & push-ups; leg, seat & ab work at the bar; then more ab work on the floor; with plenty of stretching in between. One of the key differentiators between Bar Method and other classes is the philosophy of the workout, which in the case of Bar Method is designed to sculpt muscle, putting the least impact on the joints an burning the maximum amount of calories. Bar Method instructors are purists who only teach Bar Method. They are handpicked from among our existing clients & go through over 300 hours of extensive training prior to teaching their first class.

The Bar Method Seattle

The Bar Method Seattle


They say that barre yields the best benefits when performed 3-5x per week. Lucky for you, I've got a month of unlimited classes* to give away! Want to win it? Just leave me a comment below & you'll be entered to win!

I'll draw a winner on Friday, November 23rd at 5:00p.m. Good luck!

*Seattle residents new to The Bar Method only.


Lookbook Love: The Hill-Side A/W '12

The brothers Corsillo (Emil & Sandy) of The Hill-Side sent out disposable cameras and samples of their latest collection of ties, scarves and handkerchiefs. They gathered the results into this sweet A/W '12 lookbook. Only in Brooklyn can they come up with a lookbook on hipster level ultra 9000 and still be taken seriously. Enjoy my favorite shots below, and the rest at TheHill-Side.com:


See the World with Lookmatic & Fresh Jess

When's the last time you were asked how you look at the world? My dear friends at IFB asked me last week, when they partnered up for Lookmatic glasses for their #SeeTheWorld series.

Hope: A foggy but hopeful start to another beautiful Seattle day.

Simply put, Lookmatic makes you feel great about how you look by offering prescription eyewear at realistic prices. Realistic is a perfect way to see the world, right? I have never understood why it should cost hundreds of dollars to look the way you want in something you need to physically see. Many of us don't have the luxury of 20/20 vision, but why should we pay buku bucks for that? Lookmatic was kind enough to gift me a pair to show you how I see the world.

Community: Right before my YFEcon panel

Community: The Space Needle through my lens

I had a particularly busy day yesterday, when I snapped these photos. I prepped for a panel talk for YFEcon while taking my Spike to daycare, on top of a day of work, blogger event and client meetings. The icing on my Thursday was a first screening of Breaking Dawn: Part II! No matter how busy I am, however, I always see the world through a lens of hope, love and community.

Love: My Spike

Love: Another blogger event! I do it for the love. (photo by AlixRose)

How do you see the world?

This is a sponsored post, fully written and reviewed by me. All opinions expressed in this post, as with all posts on Fresh Jess, are mine.


Fresh Style: Fight Night

By day, my boyfriend is a spreadsheet ninja (analyst) at a global non-profit based in Seattle. By night, he's a professional mixed martial arts fighter. When I get to put my fighter wifey hat on for his fights, I always have a lot of fun dressing for it. 

The thoughts running through my mind are mostly around finding a balance between the glitzy glamour of Vegas fights and the overwhelming lack of any kind of dress code of fights here in Washington state. I never expect to attract attention, but I want to look put together for my fighter's big night. More than anything, I have to be comfortable and I have to stay true to my own style.

What you see here is the product of all that brainstorming before his last fight in August. Vintage, military and leather with red lips, a few accents and sleek hair. The ingredients for a fun night of fights!

Vegan Leather Skirt

Military Jacket_Leather Sleeves

Stones jacket from Piperlime / Vintage Eazy-E tee / Vegan leather skirt (similar) / Vintage Dior belt / ShoeMINT Kristin wedges c/o Bollare / Vintage crossbody bag / Jeweled bib necklace (similar)


Lookbook Love: Zara TRF, November 2012

Zara has been hitting the military & leather trend hard this season. By the looks of their latest TRF lookbook, they have no intention of slowing down soon. I LIKE IT. I can't get enough of military-inspired garb. Zara does it right with gold accents, brocade, quality fabrics & intricate detail that make you feel like you're making a solid investment without spending a whole lot. Give me more!


Fresh & Dapper: Mr. Porter's The Way I Dress

Fashionable men might be a dime a dozen in the streets of New York, but outside of the Big Apple, it is truly a treat to see a man with impeccable style. Mr. Porter checks in with some of the most dapper of them all, featuring them in "The Way I Dress" vignettes. I loved these all so much I have to post them all.

See how style makes Joshua Kissi (blogger at Street Etiquette, below), Nick Sullivan (Esquire magazine editor), Amir Khan (Olympic & world champion boxer) & Derek Blasberg (writer) command a presence in whatever their next endeavor. While some men might not take fashion seriously, these four definitely make the case for style as self-expression, confidence-boosting, and a means for having fun.

Keep an eye on Mr. Porter for more dapper gents in their "The Way I Dress" series and other exciting videos.


Fresh Jess in NYC: Microsoft Store Launch & Surface Tablet

Last week, I flew out to NYC for a last-minute trip to help Microsoft celebrate the launch of the Surface tablet alongside Windows 8 & the grand opening of the Microsoft Store holiday pop-up in Times Square.  I was accompanied by my best friend Paula, three other invited guests from Nashville, Chicago & L.A. and their friends.  It was a whirlwind of fun, learning, exploring and luck! (We got out of there early Sunday morning and avoided any Hurricane Sandy chaos. Phew!)

You can see shots from my trip on the Fresh Jess Facebook page, including the big Microsoft Store opening, Windows 8 installations in the middle of Times Square, and more playing around with the Surface Tablet in the store. Microsoft was kind enough to equip us with photographers and a video crew who recorded our time in the store. 

So what were my initial thoughts? Watch the video below:

So what are my thoughts on the Surface tablet? Before I share them with you, I just want to stress that I am not a gadget geek at all. I don't need the latest and greatest, I want something reliable that does most of the things I need it to. I own all Mac products, but do not own an iPad. These are the opinions of a casual tech consumer who spends a ton of time on a computer working and on social media.

That being said, I think the Surface tablet is a great lifestyle computer. The resolution is great, the screen's glare-resistant and is really responsive to touch & swipe. There are touch covers in several colors, but I found the keyboard on these touch covers not as responsive as the tablet screen or the Type Pad cover (I got one of those.) It's got a built-in kickstand, USB and memory card ports.

I'm a big fan of the Start screen. It's colorful and customizable to the apps, sites and settings of your liking. There are a ton of apps in the Microsoft Store, but small in comparison to the Apple or Android store. I'm hoping developers will warm up to making more sweet apps for the Surface soon! I'd love to see native apps for Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram. One big feature of the Surface is the "Charms" sidebar, which appears with a short swipe of the right side of the screen and allows you to share links and updates from your Surface among other things. Until I see native apps for those social media sites, though, I don't know that I'll use Charms often. A swipe of the bottom of the screen will bring up more settings controls.

What are my other favorite features?

I love that Microsoft Office 2013 is included in the Surface tablet. I bought MS Office for my MacBook Air, and it's nice to be able to work on documents, spreadsheets & PowerPoint presentations on either one. 

The camera is amazing. The screen sits at an angle when it's in kickstand mode, but the camera corrects itself and captures a lot. You can fit at least four people in on a conference call on it. 

Resolution for movies and music videos is clear too. Battery life will get you through a whole day of use, so if you're only using it sparingly, should keep for a few days.

I've had a lot of people ask me how it compares to the iPad, or if they should trade out their iPad for a Surface tablet. I think it's like comparing apples and oranges. If you've got an iPad and you love it, why would you want to make a switch? It'd be hard to switch between operating systems, but if you're only using the Surface for some light work and mostly entertainment purposes, it's a good choice. More than anything, think about your needs & budget for your tablet, then go from there.

I'm honored to be among the first to play with it, and look forward to seeing what Microsoft does to improve it in the months and years to come.

All photos above credit Edelman & Microsoft

I'll finish this post with some of my own behind-the-scenes photos:

In action!

Getting prepped

Interviewing Microsoft Store manager Melinda

Thank you Microsoft for my new toy!

The outfit:
Stones jacket from Piperlime / Zara sweater, booties & bag / Old Navy Rockstar jeans / Gifted bib necklace (similar)

Check out the Surface tablet with Windows RT at MicrosoftStore.com. Thanks again!