“Summerwhite is fast upon us.”
Friends, relatives, acquaintances, fellow travelers, artists, writers, and nomads: it’s that time of the year again. With Summerwhite 2017 fast approaching, we are busier than ever trying to juggle summer travel and sipping Aperol Spritzer after another trying to bring you YAMC’s flagship event: the annual Castle Parties we’ve come to love. A few words while we’re on this topic and I have your attention:
After long deliberation we decided to rename the event Summerwhite, since Aryo, who’s currently running around like a chicken with his head cut-off, believed it to “Trump-like” to continue calling it Project Aryo. Also, he says that Project Aryos are and have always been very unique experiences—the original Project Aryo took place on Friday, December 20th, 2008 and it is rumored that the movie “Project X” was loosely based on this high school house party. Project Aryo II was the original Castle Party, April 8-10th, 2016. The second castle party, which happened to be much more organized than the first one (which actually was just Aryo’s birthday party), was called Project Aryo III: Summer Palace.
After brainstorming many ideas and spending many hours on the subject, we made an executive decision to call the subsequent events Summerwhite. We believe this re-branding was the most appropriate and the most natural succession of something that started spontaneously and by the hand of fate, and has grown to be something that’s much bigger than any one of us.
Next let’s talk about the deposits for the tickets, which is also a new concept we’re going to be starting this year and continue with going forward. The idea is simple so I’ll let it describe itself: each person has to sign-up for and accomplish two tasks/duties of their choosing. Upon the successful completion of their tasks, be it cooking duty, water balloon duty, fire duty, or clean-up duty, they will receive a confirmation or a signature from the Castle Master on duty. On Sunday, you will receive your deposits back. Castle Master is always Aryo Winterblack if he is awake, in-castle, and lucid. In the case of Aryo being temporarily outside the castle or asleep, another Castle Master will be appointed. There will always be a Castle Master on duty who will be responsible for all decisions and will have the final say in resolving disputes or any matters that shall arise. If Aryo is asleep, unavailable, or off-ground, Julia Posch will be the second-in-command. If Aryo and Julia are both unavailable, a third person will be appointed to be the acting Castle Master in charge. If all of three of the said people are unavailable, a fourth and final Castle Master will be appointed. If you’re interested in applying to be a Castle Master, please get in touch with us. The requirements for eligibility are as follows: you need to be able-bodied, you need to have a very proficient understanding and stable command of both English as well as German (we’re talking fluency or near-fluency), and you need to be present for the entire duration of Summerwhite (Thursday till Sunday). If you meet the above requirements and eligibilities, you’re more than welcome to apply to be a Castle Master. If you meet the requirements and think you’re eligible to apply and capable of performing all the duties levied upon Castle Master (really, you think so?), please contact Aryo Winterblack for more information.
If you play an instrument, by all means bring it to Summerwhite. We will be organizing rides for everyone. This year there are people flying from London, San Francisco, as well as people coming from Slovenia, Croatia, Germany, and the Netherlands (on top of people from every corner of Austria, of course) to attend Summerwhite. Summerwhite isn’t for everyone. It is unapologetically only for people who are unique and creative, artistic, people who are passionate and a little crazy, people who love to travel and to share, people who are bold, and have a story to tell. For this reason and many other reasons, Summerwhite is and will always remain extremely exclusive. The greatest private festival of the summer is almost here… are you ready? The castle is calling, will you heed the call?
" Summerwhite ruft."
Freunde, Verwandte, Bekannte, Reisende, Künstler, Schriftsteller und Nomaden: Die Zeit ist wieder reif und Summerwhite 2017 naht schnell. Wir sind beschäftigter denn je zwischen Sommer-Reisen und Aperol Spritzer das diesjährige YAMC's Event zu planen: die alljährliche Castle Party, die wir lieben gelernt haben. Hier ein paar Worte zu diesem Thema die eure Aufmerksamkeit schüren sollen:
Nach langer Überlegung haben wir uns entschlossen, die Veranstaltung Summerwhite umzubenennen, da Aryo, der in letzter Zeit viel Zeit in dieses Event gesteckt hat, glaubt, dass es zu "Trump-like" ist, die Veranstaltung weiterhin Projekt Aryo zu nennen. Ebenfalls sagt er, dass die Projekt-Aryos schon immer sehr einzigartige Erfahrungen mit sich bringen und gebracht haben - das ursprüngliche Projekt Aryo fand am Freitag, den 20. Dezember 2008 statt und es wird gemunkelt, dass der Film "Project X" auf dieser High School House Party basiert. Projekt Aryo II war ursprünglich die erste Burgparty vom 8. bis 10. April 2016. Die zweite Burgparty, die viel besser organisiert war als die erste (die eigentlich nur Aryos Geburtstagsfeier war), hieß Projekt Aryo III: Sommerpalast (Summer Palace).
Nach dem Brainstorming von vielen Ideen und dem Verbringen vieler Stunden zu diesem Thema, haben wir eine ausführliche Entscheidung getroffen, und werden die nachfolgenden Ereignisse „Summerwhite“ nennen. Wir glauben, dass diese neue Namensgebung die geeignetste und die natürlichste Nachfolge von etwas ist, das spontan und mit der Hand des Schicksals begann und zu etwas gewachsen ist, das viel größer ist als jeder von uns.
Als nächstes wollen wir über die Einzahlungen für die Tickets reden. Auch hierfür haben wir ein neues Konzept entwickelt, das auch bei nachfolgenden Burgparties angewandt werden soll. Die Idee ist einfach und hat diese Grundgedanken: Jeder muss sich anmelden und zwei Aufgaben / Pflichten freier Wahl ausführen. Nach dem erfolgreichen Abschluss der ausgeführten Aufgaben, sei es Kochen, das Vorbereiten der Wasserballon- Schlacht, das Vorbereiten unserer nächtlichen Lagerfeuer oder Aufräumarbeiten, erhaltest du eine Bestätigung oder eine Unterschrift vom Burgmeister. Am Sonntag erhaltest du deine Einzahlungen zurück. Castle Master ist immer Aryo Winterblack (natürlich nur wenn er gerade nicht schläft :P). Im Fall, dass er sich vorübergehend außerhalb des Schlosses befindet oder eingeschlafen ist, wird ein weiterer Burgmeister bereitstehen. Es wird immer ein Burgmeister im Dienst sein, der für alle Entscheidungen verantwortlich sein wird und das letzte Wort bei der Klärung von Streitigkeiten oder irgendwelchen Angelegenheiten haben wird, falls welche entstehen sollten. Wenn Aryo schläft, nicht verfügbar oder off-ground ist, wird Julia Posch die zweite Schlossmeisterin sein. Sollten Aryo und Julia nicht verfügbar sind, wird einen anderen der aktive Burgmeister sein. Wenn alle drei dieser genannten Personen nicht verfügbar sind, wird ein vierter und letzter Burgmeister ernannt. Wenn du daran interessiert bist, ein Burgmeister zu sein, wende dich bitte an uns. Die Voraussetzungen für diese Aufgabe sind wie folgt: Du musst in der Lage sein, körperlich zu heben, du musst fließend oder nahezu fließend die deutsche sowie englische Sprache beherrschen, und du musst für die gesamte Dauer von Summerwhite (Donnerstag bis Sonntag) präsent sein. Also solltest du daran interessiert sein, wende dich bitte an Aryo Winterblack für weitere Informationen.
Wenn du ein Instrument spielst, bitten wir dich dein Instrument mit auf die Burg zu bringen. Wir organisieren Mitfahrgelegenheiten für alle die auf eine angewiesen sind. In diesem Jahr werden Menschen aus London, San Francisco, sowie aus Slowenien, Kroatien, Deutschland und den Niederlanden (natürlich nicht zu vergessen alle Menschen aus unserem kleinen Österreich), das Summerwhite Festival besuchen. Summerwhite ist aber nicht für alle gedacht. Es ist hauptsächlich für Menschen, die einzigartig und kreativ sowie künstlerisch angehaucht sind sowie Menschen die leidenschaftlich und ein wenig verrückt sind, Menschen, die gerne reisen und teilen, Menschen, die kühn sind, und eine Geschichte zu erzählen haben bzw. nicht scheu sich, ihre Geschichte zu erzählen. Aus diesem Grund und vielen anderen Gründen ist und bleibt Summerwhite immer eine exklusive Veranstaltung. Das größte private Fest des Sommers ist fast hier ... bist du bereit? Das Schloss ruft, willst du den Anruf beachten?
By Aryo Winterblack
Wednesday, July 5th, 2017
Minutes before take-off, sitting in a plane again, this time traveling to Scotland via Brussels. Last night, while celebrating Fourth of July by coming together with friends and strangers who later also became friends in a park, I had an epiphany. It was a moment of pure revelation. Pertinacious tenacity, or rather, tenacious pertinacity and I'm determined now to jot as much of it down as quickly as I can, so that this idea can see the light of day even if my mind ceases to be lucid and sound. What I felt, I could never describe with words, nevertheless at the least I should try and try I will. Having said that, I'm actually wetting paper with ink, composing not with my phone but on a scroll and with quill. We're in the air now but still, if the plane crashes, on the way from Vienna or Brussels to Edinburgh, my memory will be of the past but this notebook may survive (since my iPhone is neither free-falling-out-of-the-sky-resistant and nor water-resistant, in the unlikely case of a water landing). So, since we've established the reason and the method for this outdated practice of record-keeping, we shall together proceed to the event in question. Without further ado, especially before this unseemly slippery slope culminating in my tragic demise by way of inadvertently going sky-diving without a parachute comes true, let's get to it. Yesterday, I had very little personal inclination to attend, let alone organize Fourth of July festivities of any kind. Given the current state of affairs and that abomination-of-nature occupying the highest public office in our country, I wasn't exactly brimming with pride, if you will. I felt disheartened and disenfranchised, maybe even ostracized. Alienated. And I cared much less about national pride and choking-up on stars-and-stripes and star-spangled horseshit (here meaning bullshit for those of my non-north American, English-speaking friends) than I care about the two rhetorical fragments-- the former in the sentence immediately preceding this one and the latter in the sentence succeeding the one that succeeds it. Nonetheless, t'was Fourth of July and I felt it justifiably audacious to neither lose faith and nor sight, even if I didn't know in which, and of what; it was simply important that I do not lose faith nor lose sight (this, by the way, follows the same pattern of logical thinking as the one that produced the idea of this notebook surviving a potential plane crash and my phone not-- all creations of my remarkably sophisticated imagination and evidently flawless mind). Even though the irony of celebrating a United States which had no resemblance to the America I had known and loved (like a violin unfaithful to music and to wine), and was incongruous with the very notion of freedom, was not lost on me, at this juncture, I still decided to put together a small picnic in Graz, Austria to revel in the adequate company of friends and strangers who later also became friends. We talked about the construing of intangible ideas such as time and we talked about how it is a man-made construct, not banal or trite, but not original either. We talked about what it means to be American, to whom, and why, and we laughed heartily about trivial, silly, and simple-minded jokes that were frankly so intellectually-lacking I'm afraid writing them down would be an unfair desecration of the sanctity of pen, and paper. Sometime in the middle of all of this lively coming-together of warm bodies, beating hearts and predominantly left-leaning, like-minded minds, perhaps precisely after I spontaneously decided to abandon the very event I organized and go instead for a goddamn swim in the Mur river with all my clothing still on ("clothing" here refers to a blue shirt, white-striped pants and red socks), it dawned on me: freedom is also a construing of intangible ideas such as time, therefore also fully deserving of the epithet "man-made construct." As I sat there in the river enjoying the warm summer day, I literally reflected at my own freedom of being in the Mur river in my underwear, in broad daylight, and, as the sun blessed my soul with positive energy and a light-hearted mood, I realized that if freedom were to depart from my life, it would render the very notion of life itself meaningless. Devoid of merriment and pleasure, uninhabited. Without freedom would life be incontrovertibly lifeless, without a birth anticipated. Freedom is and has always been an unshakeable and inseparable trait of life, of which, "the pursuit of happiness" is one of the main fundamental cries. Together, they form the cornerstone and bedrock of humanity regardless of her conjectures and their refutations, regardless of the growing distinction between humanity and humankind. The entire world seems to agree on this one thing (well, two things-- I'm sure that the recent advancements in technology and the sciences still affirm and attest to the veracity of two plus two equaling four), that the right to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" shall not be in vain, shan't be suspended, and mustn't be infringed upon.
In all honesty, I really did take my time in that river, basking in the cancerous and hazy-gold afternoon rays of the ever-loving sun, being grateful for that moment, for my life and its freedoms, for the people in it, the sun, vitamin D, and the nice tan (though I don't really enjoy the thought of the seemingly-inevitable yet not imminently-looming skin cancer), among a plethora of other things. Mostly I was grateful that the Founding Fathers decided to declare our sovereignty and independence in July, rather than say, January for instance. Boy am I grateful to the guy who decided that! Whoever came up with that idea is simply a great person and I'm eternally grateful to him. "I'm in total agreement of that decision," I thought to myself, "this is why people should brainstorm their ideas. I'm sure the whole Fourth of July thing was the product of vigorous brainstorming. Maybe it was that Hancock guy, he was always full of good ideas." It was in such a state that I returned to America's birthday party in Graz, my mind dismissive of the thoughts I had just had in order to be able to re-engage in well-natured, joyful banter.
Fast forward to an hour or two later, the sun yawning sleepily away, me and Julia cleaned everything up and headed home. After all, I had to wake up at 04:15 the next morning, catch a train to Vienna to begin my journey to Rome (sorry, I mean Scotland). On the way home, Julia drove as I let the 'ol flag wave happily in the wind, out the passenger window. Somehow the symbolic motion of a flag waving in the wind eerily filled my heart with an elusive and intricately convoluted sense of pride. Ah damn, we just landed in Brussels and I'm still writing. I have to deplane now (that's North American for "disembark" for those of my non-American, English-speaking friends). Anyway, I sat there in that passenger seat, holding that flagpole while yelling incoherent yet positive-sounding freedom-themed jargon at the good denizens of Graz unfortunate enough to maintain a residence close to mine, thus terrorizing the district of Eggenberg with a bit of "freedom," whatever the hell that means. Julia, being increasingly more intuitive and perceptive of my feelings (actually being so discerning to make me seriously wonder if she can read my mind), and evermore accommodating of me, offers to drive around our immediate neighborhood one more time, "one last 'victory round," she says gleefully, one last hurrah, hurray! Now, those of you who know me know that I neither get overtly sentimental and nor visibly emotional when it comes to national pride. Yet, in the spirit of transparency and being veracious-- that is a fidelity to facts and a truthfulness to truth-- let it be known that last night, that is exactly what happened. Sometime in that loop of passing my apartment time and time again, as the flag waved and waved self-righteously, I had a vision. I gazed at the flag brazenly dancing shamelessly, and observed something that both my American and my non-American friends fail to see in it. I saw, but an emblem of justice for millions of the oppressed, now themselves oppressors. I saw, a crest for the fallen and a semblance of hope for the persecuted, a sliver of light in a sea-to-shining-sea of darkness. I saw a treasured promise of a better life to those who had never tasted its forbidden rapture. América used to stand for something, what happened to all that sanctimonious talk of protecting the vulnerable and holding responsible those who victimize others? Wasn't it us who tried to teach the world about the meaning of justice through immortalizing lost crimes? If there is the attenuating twinge of hypocrisy muddying our good name, isn't it worthy of reformation, to reemerge from our sordid lows to our mordant highs? Criticism is not necessarily always synonymous with vitriol, patriotism doesn't spell-out: "roll-over and conform," and to question, to ask "why," is the highest form of love. This flag has endured and persevered, but has also deviated from this self-proclaimed path of righteousness; we no longer have any right to claim the moral high ground-- I don't know if we ever did-- and we have long but reneged on the moral duties and the ethical responsibilities we owe to one another. To be American today is a burden yet a blessing, a privilege to be a part of a partisan paradise, a paragon of "peaceful" patriarchy yet somehow still a perfect paradigm of pain and passion, playful and permanent, plausible, but not palatable, poetic, not paramount. Polite, yet poignant, pitifully pious and proudly proud "so point that prose at another man!" Poised, not polished, powerful, and patronizing. Praiseful, but not prayerful, preferable, but not preferred, praiseworthy but never praised. America, the paradox of ostentatiously celebrating arrogance, forever unapologetic, and unabashedly impenitent. America: also a construing of intangible, yet increasingly unintelligible and contradictory ideas, mysterious yet plain, not cryptic, yet somehow inscrutable, yet somehow enigmatic. Don't forget: democracy is not a show you can watch from your couch; it's a participatory event. Don't forget: criticism is not an exhibition of hatred, but a manifestation of love, and respect. What I felt, I could never describe with words, but this is my attempt. Well, my dear America, a conversation is long over-due, but for now, happy birthday.
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