Episode 4 | Outdoor Defense with Nicole Snell

What do you do when you’re all alone in the woods and there is someone trying to grab you? In this episode, I sit down with Nicole Snell, adventuresofnik on Instagram, and her work joining her love of nature and her passion for teaching self-defense by creating the OutDoor Defense series.

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You can turn the Closed Captioning on the YouTube video of the podcast below.

Why I Became The Leader Of A Hiking Group

If you asked me a year ago if I would be the ambassador for the Los Angeles chapter of the international hiking group, Hiker Babes, whose mission is to unite women who share a passion for the outdoors into a community, I would have laughed. It’s not as though I haven’t led such as groups of writers, students, coworkers, and such before. However, I always left trail scouting and leading hikes up to the other hiking groups that I am also a member — especially the group, Black Girls Trekkin.’

It was with the group Black Girls Trekkin that I first attempted to do the Six-Pack of Peaks Challenge. Before I was hiking with a team of badass women who climb mountains, I never would have thought that I would have been able to hike as long and as far as we have on some of these hikes. I think the two biggest lessons I learned was that, one: AllTrails is a tool to use, and two: with the help and advice of my wonderful and very supportive friends at Black Girls Trekkin’ I can totally lead a group of women out into nature safely.

It was also all my other outdoorsy friends that have motivated to do incredibly creative and intricate things such as a podcast. It was by first getting back into running outdoors and ultimately just returning to nature in college and hiking with other nature-loving people that have led me into this life of a wild mountain woman.  

So, when people ask me how, or why, did you become the leader of L.A. Chapter Hiker Babes, I try to give a short answer. I usually just say I did it because I love hiking and I was offered the role, but what I really want to tell them is how I started running so I could drink more at bars and eat street burritos, and it lead me to be in a national online campaign for an amazing shoe company and a hiking leader for an international community. I know better that it would take too long, though.

Update: Why I Left Hiker Babes

What You Should Know Before Venturing Out Into Nature

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The light from the morning Saturday sun illuminated the front dashboard of my vehicle with a golden hue. The sky was a gorgeous shade of crystal blue and sat prominently above our heads as the clearest it has been in months. It finally felt like it was spring, but I was stuck slowly crawling behind a line of equally eager drivers on the freeway.

“The sun came out and really brought everyone else out today,” I said to my passenger. We were heading out to venture into the nearby mountains and did not think that the rest of the world would want to slide back into nature too. “I don’t remember it ever being like this,” I continued.

It was true. A few years ago, no one really had ever heard of the words “super bloom.” Instagram wasn’t flooded with photos of excited Influencers and social media professionals laying in the beautiful wildflowers and crushing them into oblivion as they wandered off the path. Hiking was something only a few people I knew did, and I could never get any of my friends to sign up for a 5K outdoors. However, technology has changed along with time, and this has invited more curious parties out into the wild. Continue reading “What You Should Know Before Venturing Out Into Nature”

The Legacy of A Life Online

Facebook has recently been gathering old posts from our early years on Facebook to share with us each day, and has given us the option to share these memories with our Facebook friends to look back on as well.

Each day Facebook shows you all of your stories from the same date on different years. Photographs, status updates, and wall posts involving your closest friends and family are displayed on your timeline for the world to see, and it’s definitely interesting to see your online life get drudged back up from the past. Continue reading “The Legacy of A Life Online”

Connect To Stalk Your Friends: How Will We Define Privacy In The Future?

Photo cred: Connect.com
Photo cred: Connect.com

As posted on Examiner.

Last week a new app, which would make it easier to stalk your friends and random people without them knowing, was released to the public. Connect is an iOS and web application that was introduced at the 2014 Launch Festival in San Francisco. The app uses geographic data, social networks and other information available about the person on the web and compiles it into different sets of maps.

To make it clear though, the functions of this web application is something that everyone does on a regular basis already. Just ask anyone who watches, or gets the concept of the MTV show, Catfish. Connect just makes it easier to find all of this information and makes it look pretty on cool maps.

What the app does do differently is call more attention to our growing concerns toward privacy. For the most part, people are beginning to understand that whatever you put on the web is going to be out there for the entire world to see forever. Continue reading “Connect To Stalk Your Friends: How Will We Define Privacy In The Future?”

Our Obsession with the Media

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As Published by Miss Millennia Magazine

Picture this. A random person who you don’t know breaks into your house because you left the door open and they started watching your every move. They spend months on end reading your mail, watching you do mundane tasks and they somehow feel as though you both are best friends. You would call the cops right? Well this type of behavior is actually encouraged as long as the crazy stalker is sitting behind a screen. Continue reading “Our Obsession with the Media”

A Youthful Voice

I was armed with my laptop streaming live coverage of the event through various web and news sites, I listened to my phone streaming special live coverage from NPR, and I kept in touch with friends watching the election unfold through Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and text. We were all pumped and excited to the point where we all could have been mistaken for football fanatics at the Super Bowl. I was truly amazed for more reasons than just getting to hear the election results, but because I had encountered so many young voters who took the time and try to educate themselves on the issues and voice their opinions at the polls.

I was so proud of my generations attempt at completing their civic duty and caring about their future. They saw the importance of knowing what was going on around them and how it could affect their entire life, and regardless of who they voted for or their political affiliation, I was, and I’m still, incredibly happy that the majority of my friends (except for one individual who has complained about her rights before…) mailed a ballot in or went to their voting place to make a difference. Continue reading “A Youthful Voice”

You Might Just Be A Psychopath

When today’s generation goes out to have a good evening, an allotted amount of time is set aside for quiet updates to every social media alert available. If they’re at a party they’re recording video for their vlog on YouTube and possible posting a short post about the whole event on their blog. They take a picture of their drink or fancy meal with Instagram which links it to their Twitter account and then posts to their Tumblr, tags them into Foursquare, and then posts to their Facebook. But if you’re not up on your social media game, people just find you to be strange.

Apparently some employers do a double take if they can’t find your mug on Facebook and a number of psychiatrists consider an absence on Facebook as abnormal. But why is it so important to join the herd of 955 million individuals on Facebook?

“The Internet has become a natural part of life,” psychologist Christopher Moeller told Germany’s Der Taggspiegel. “It’s possible that you get feelings of positive feedback through online friends.” Continue reading “You Might Just Be A Psychopath”