Lush Valley March Workshop: Tuesday 3/15 by kristinmarting
March 18, 2011, 10:13 pm
Filed under: Ambition, American Dream, Events, Research

Today we started by finishing the second phase of the workshop, which focused on the Declaration of Independence and the tenet of FREEDOM. The Lush Valley immigration  officers discussed different possibilities for a potential creative protest, involving everything from shoes to flowers. They talked about the frustrations that today’s generation faces with the concept of protest, in an age when the idea of creating any real social change in America feels extremely challenging. They also discussed the cyclical nature of the American Dream—that when a generation creates a certain amount of social change, their children don’t have that experience of being able to fight for social justice.

After wrapping up that exercise, we moved on to the third phase of Cullen’s American Dream and dove into the concept of upward mobility (economic and/or social advancement). The tenet for this section of the work is AMBITION. We researched 2-3 person scenes from various plays and novels, and brought them to the table to explore the different relationships involved in the competitive workplace. Next, we did some team building exercises for the Lush Valley officers. In the first exercise, each officer wrote three self-descriptive adjectives, and then their fellow officers matched those adjectives with each officer’s name. Following this, each officer came up with a fourth adjective for every officer. In the second exercise, each officer simply answered questions that revealed something about their character, such as “If you could ask one question to determine whether someone should be leader of Lush Valley, what would it be?”

We ended the day with an exercise that involved each actor researching videos from TED conferences that promote a certain idea or philosophy, and then creating a “TED speech” from their characters point of view that advocates for the success of an important idea or philosophy.

A rose by any other name by talyarden
August 9, 2010, 10:36 pm
Filed under: Ambition, Images, Opportunity | Tags: , , ,

Nick Grillo, as a boy in Italy, dreamed of America and its opportunity, Southington, Connecticut. He saved enough money for boat passage to this country. Today, after 22 years, he is one of the world’s outstanding flori-culturists, developer of the famous “Thornless Rose,” an age-old dream of his craft.

One of 1600 rare color photos from the Great Depression were compiled by the Farm Services Administration from 1939 and 1944. Available here:

Notes from Ambition – Think Tank #1 (Thanks Andrea Pemberton for recording these) by talyarden
April 27, 2010, 1:01 pm
Filed under: Ambition, Events | Tags:

Question: Does ambition have to equate with money?

Money toward your project vs. money for you.

Money = the way of keeping track, or you can track with fame, status, etc.


Money is a social system – means to an end after you have money it becomes an end.  After you have enough money it becomes an end.

Process vs. end

Does the end pull you, or does the intention push you

Enjoying the process seems healthier – keeping traveling vs. landing somewhere

Is ambition a contemporary problem?

Rich people’s children lack ambition – is it based on need?

Making a mark on society

Capitalism needs ambition – it is fueled by ambition – within capitalists system – ambition is equated with money but within other systems ambition is equated with other things.

Even in American capitalist system:  Olympians working as waiters – poor but ambitious.  Politicians who want power, but know their jobs aren’t going to necessarily bring in the most dollars.

Ambition Think Tank: ideas for sessions by kristinmarting
April 19, 2010, 3:05 pm
Filed under: Ambition, Events | Tags: , ,

Ambition Think Tank, photo by Carl Skutsch

We had more ideas for conversations than we had time to do -here’s a list of all of our ideas and I have marked the ones that we actually convened  – notes are already or will be posted for each session over the next day or so…..

posted by Kristin

When to Let go of Ambition (convened)

Does Ambition expire? How When Why Where?

Ambition for doing the most good (convened)

The ends vs the means

Is your ambition to be most like your parents or most unlike your parents?  (convened)

Childhood vs Adult Ambition  (convened)

Courage  (convened)

Self Destruction

Immigration (convened)


What is your relationship to Ambition?


Renown or Stardom






True to Yourself?

Does ambition have to equate with money?

Wordspace it Growotski It Shakespeare It