Thursday, December 29, 2005

Blind Luck has always been my forte

When something as fortunate as a job in New York finds me, things do seem to fall together quite well. I never thought I would be so proud that say that I am a current resident of Jersey City... but I am. I move on Monday, and this only leads to one problem, which is finding stuff to move in. I have no furniture and neither does my room mate, but the space bewteen the walls will be partially mine on a month to month basis, so I'm still excited. After hearing that there was an IKEA down the street, I knew that furniture wouldn't be an issue much longer. There's something about IKEA that makes peoples heads turn, and it's not the dollar icecreams. The first IKEA in Massachusetts opened a few weeks ago, and shoppers rushed to the doors without even knowing what IKEA was. The radio stations kept blaring out, "IKEA is coming to Stoughton,(Mass)" and people just got in there cars to try to find it.

Back to things falling into place, I just sold my kiteboard for $300, and after the consignment fees, I'm looking at $275 in my new apartment fund. If I never went to the surf shop in New Hampshire to buy a board bag for my trip to Puerto Rico, I never would have put my kiteboard on consignment. hmmm.

I have all these theories about the iPod, but I didn't even own one until last Sunday. So, I am ecstatic to say that I have officially joined the iPod world, and now when I'm on the subway I can ignore everyone right back. I just have to be careful that I don't break into dance. The iPod world, I've discovered is very intense at first. The week after my friends get iPods, they become instantly anisocial. "I can't Liz, I'm doing iPod stuff." I discovered why this happened. The iPod first acts as a controlled substance. You have it in your palms, and you have the sudden urge to use it, but it's empty. It needs to be filled, so you start filling up your library, but the act of filling up the library makes the urge to hear songs through your own iPod, more severe. It's not enough that you can hear music on a CD or even in the iTunes library. So, you stop feeding music into your iPod, just to verify that it works. You may want to shake it a few times to make sure it really is an mp3 player, and then when you discover you put a bad song in it, you plug it back in to the computer and continue downloading more songs, while you take the bad ones out. Some of my friends were in Podland for two weeks and I asked them where they went. They said, "Oh, I'm anal retentive when it comes to my iPod." This means that they had many mixed CD's that misspelt artist and song names, and often didn't have them at all. I just discovered that I'm anal retentive as well. I am managing my iPod time very well. There is another stage, where anal retentive iPod owners go to Podland, again. This happens when they discovered the "Composers" section of their iPod, and the composers section is always completely messed up. Letters are uppercase and lowercase in no particular order. It is a nightmare for patients with OCD. Luckily, I discovered the composer section early. I don't think this iPod stuff will interfere with work. I have holiday this week. If there is another twelve step program to this iPod stuff, please let me know now.

I really do enjoy working at FCB. Everyone is welcoming and supportive of my current inability to know everything about copywriting. Because of my eagerness to learn, my learning curve has been steep. The creative director has that balance of toughness and finess, and it will be interesting to find out how she reacts to work she likes and dislikes. I went on the intranet and discovered that there is a club called FooteNotes that focuses on charities and other events that both benefit the community and our company. I really want to join, and I have an idea that I want to pursue with the leader of this company. In my spare time, I've walked around studying what people fill their cubicle space with and I discovered that we're called creatives for a very viable reason. The art directors are artists, painters and sketchers, and the copywriters are poets, novelists and screenwriters. I think it would be a great idea to make a literary magazine just for the employees of FCB. It's what they do in their spare time anyway. Why don't we bind it together and share it? This is one of the few ideas I will present to the FooteNote club. The others involve using our connections to create more perks for employees, like external events, better charity events, better discounts, and a better way to create a lively atmosphere in the work place. I'm not dissapointed in the current atmosphere. I actually think it is a very live place. This is why it's the perfect place to work with. It will be easy to improve.

This is the update. I still feel that I can do more. I have ideas that go quickly. I need to carry a notebook wherever I go, like Kurt Vonnegut. He always had some great ideas, and he remembered to write them down. I am thinking of creating another blog. This blog will be fictional, so I'm thinking up a character. The catch is that I can't post the link to this blog. My character would never be associated with me, so it will be up to the public to discover this character. The idea came when I told a friend about my blog, and he said "Why does it have to be non-fiction?"

Ideas: This may be a theory or a movie idea, but what if when you die, you are suddenly stuck in a box with all of the living creatures that you killed? Everything, insects, road kill, whatever else. The movie could be a family that was in a car accident and they see a squirrel running around the cage, and the daughter is like "See Dad, you did hit it." Or the person that's afraid of bees and brings out the RAID every spring. The options are infinite.

Yes, I'm done. Next Time. Pictures. Promise. Cheers.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

The STRIKE gives New York a strike one

Everyone said that I picked the worst time to come to New York for work. I wouldn't even say that I picked the time or location. Since June of this year, I've been passing around my portfolio like a farm tool to Boston, New York, Los Angeles and Philadelphia. It was only a matter of time that I fell through the cracks of the actual talented individuals, who have been fighting their way into the industry. This particular time is difficult. There are so many tourists here, I'm slightly above the totem pole, when it comes to being asked for directions. In the past two weeks, I must have explained to a dozen people that the numbered streets are consecutive. But to be perfectly honest, I've really only come to New York during this time, so the large crowds that blanket Times Square, when I'm trying to find a weekend job, are expected. And the stampede at Macy's, when I'm buying extra socks, is a given. This morning, I took the Metro North (a train from out of the city such as Boston's commuter rail, or Philly's regional rail) from Mount Kisco, where I'm staying, to the city. I had a nice quiet ride, and I remembered that a strike may have happened today. I looked over at the man in the MTA uniform. He had bags under his eyes, but apparently he was headed to work. Then, the train engineer decided to stop at every local stop. The first people to step on the train from the local stop were chilled stiff. They all had runny noses that were close to crystalizing. A communal sigh of relief from the cold was shared by the standing crowd. I gave up my comfortable seat, after I realized that these people had been standing for two hours outside, waiting for their train, and the line behind them was close to a kilometer long. The subway strike had begun. The MTA worker was headed for the picket line, and I am luckily unaffected. I headed to work on foot as usual, and I did realize that there were more pedestrians as usual, but in a "New York is never consistent" kind of way. I have to admit, the fact that the lifeline of Manhattan is not beating will give New York its first strike, but strikes can rescind in New York, simply because it's New York. When they strike out their strike, I'll strike out my strike.

No inventions, but as soon as I become settled into my new apartment, (whenever it may be) I plan on putting in pictures throughout the G-lines Newsletter. I'll bet if I stagger in photos, the reading will be much more entertaining.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

It's official. I'm a creative.

I started work on Tuesday, December 13th. It's certainly been a journey up to this point, but I'm in New York now. I'm pretty sure my adventures have just begun. I have a gargantuan list of to dos that I haven't even begun. I need to find an apartment that is close to the city, inexpensive and safe. So far Astoria has had a lot to offer. There have been a few places under 500 per month, it's a family oriented safe, busy neighborhood, and the subway line stops directly under my office, so I wouldn't have to walk outside all day. FCB is located right above the Manhattan Mall, so as soon as I get my "I work here, screw you" pass, I can take the "I work here, screw you" elevator to the mall for shopping, lunch or just for fun. Also included in the "I work here, screw you" pass is access to "I work here, screw you" events on other floors of the building. Until I get this pass, I have to wear my coat to lunch breaks, because I need to use the cold public entrance, as I watch others give shoppers the "I work here, screw you" look. Besides the apartment and gaining the worker pass, I need to join a gym, find a New York hobby, like yoga, kickboxing, screen printing, being an artist or a drummer (musician) and I need to balance my budgets. I really want to get in that pattern of living, commuting, saving and paying. But trust me, the adventure will incur. With a steady income, I can start my t-shirt design line, or have a gallery show with my work, or i can be a drummer for a crappy garage band that plays at a dive bar...we'll see where I end up.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

I show'em the goods then take it away.

This week has been mostly uneventful. My cocky attitude toward this job offer turned sour as the week rolled by. I got call from the Creative Staffing agency, and I swear they were teasing me, because here I am holding my phone out, gritting my teeth and biting my nails, waiting for this offer from FCB, and I get a call from the staffers saying "Now if FCB offers you a job, you're gonna take it, right? I don't want to push for an offer and then have it blow up in my face." Am I sure that I want a job offer from FCB? Funny thought. I explained kindly that I wouldn't have driven from Boston to New York TWICE for interviews, just for the fun of living, which reminds me. Does anyone want to go to New York with me? I'm driving. I'll be held up in interviews for the entire day and dressing like a monkey in a power suit, and we have to head back on the same day, but hey, wouldn't that be a blast?

So after reassuring the creative staffers that yes, I do want this job offer, I waited. The waiting turned into boredom, which turned into moping. I was a moper for most of today, and then I got a call from the staffers. We settled the offer in 15 minutes, and it was a done deal. I'm moving to New York between this weekend to the middle of next week, and living with my aunt in Yonkers if all goes well. And I really want things to go well this time. FCB is a great company full of young and energetic faces with really creative ideas, meaning these guys can invent a completely new way to convey the same message, given strict pharma company standards.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Gotcha! I still want to rule my destiny.

The Tuesday before I was supposed to travel to Puerto Rico, I reached yet another crossroad. The main reason why I wanted to go to Puerto Rico was because I wanted to reject the life of a boring businessman that my indie counterparts were preaching against. I have that restless drive to be successful, and somehow I thought that if I ran to Puerto Rico, I would fulfill my inner independence from the boring businesslife. But something stopped me from getting on that plane. Part of it may have been chickening out, but most of it was the foreshadow of living an aloof and raucous lifestyle by experiencing this behavior through my surf hands boss who malingered her way of out sending me a contract. Like many in my generation, I don't want to be the loser, who is working with other losers, who hate their job, but they do it anyway. I want to do something that I love to do. And my dirty indie counterparts convinced me that I will never be happy in Corporate America, and my parents and your parents convinced me that I will never truly be happy at work at all. I already knew this wasn't true, because I had already found something fun that people could possibly pay me to do. And conveniently as I was thinking about how much I enjoyed Pharma copywriting, I received a phone call. Not from my raucous waif of a future windsurfing boss, but from the creative staffing agency. FCB wanted a second interview with me. ME. I felt as though big brother had reached through the fence and grabbed me, soul first, and I liked it. This interview was a breeze. I felt like the little genius kid, that everyone was waving whistles and horns at so they could hear me say something clever. It's quite a world away from the daunting fingerpointing, you know shit, interview that I was getting to know so well. I just have to make sure that if/when I do get this job, I don't turn into the character mentioned in the Buju Banton song...

Rich man's wealth is in the city
Destruction of the poor is his poverty
Destruction of his soul, his vanity
Do you hear, I and I want to rule my destiny

Which brings me to that JAMAI thing I've been mentioning intermittently. I saw this film called "Life and Debt," which is roughly about how when Jamaica broke free from England, they also became financially independent and fell into heavy debt. The US saw this country's debt as an opportunity to make money, so they lent Jamaica some money, and in return, Jamaica had to only import from the US and open a few sweat shops that made American products. For a small side note, every hotel resort in Jamaica is owned by one of these "Americans." I had an idea to create a non-profit that will build a hotel resort completely made of Jamaican products. Hopefully, there can eventually be many hotels and the idea is that this resort will create a growing profit that will be greater than Jamaica's growing debt. This profit will go entirely to the Jamaican government, so the debt will be paid off, and those Americans can stop profiting from Jamaica's misfortune in their attempt to be free.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Robert Frost would be proud. I didn't even take a road.

I did actually go to that interview with FCB. It went so well that I was positive I was gonna get an offer. After a polite thank you note, I was asked to come up with 3 ad campaigns, and I did. With the help of my sister's expertise in Diabetes, my creative muse really shouted. An excerpt...

Humulin Insulin- Lilly Diabetes
Picture: There's a young girl (5 years) in a party hat looking very squeamish. A small square of yellow cake without frosting sits in front of her and a vile of insulin that she can't take her eyes off of. Smiling children with generous servings of cake surround her.

Headline: Her life is rarely a piece of cake.

Background: Humulin is an insulin that regulates immediate sugar intake for up to four hours of the day... however special her day may be.

The office of this agency, FCB, was a showroom for clients, the employees were laxed and yet hard working at the same time, and my interview seemed spotless. Later in the day, I got a call from Lisa in Puerto Rico. She asked me if I was still available to teach, and I said yes, of course. I wanted to throw all the coal in the fire, and that is exactly what I did. I was feeding the fire to both my dreams of becoming a copywriter and a windsurfing instructor/(pro windsurfer shhh...) To pull the Puerto Rico gig down a notch, I emailed the Blue Dolphin Water Sports rival, Vela Uno, and I asked them how credible BDWS was as well as some other random PR questions. He answered freely and didn't help me even out my pros and cons. I asked him how healthcare works, and he listed some options, all were less than I'm paying now. I asked him about taxes, and apparently, everyone gets paid under the table. I asked him how many times a month does he need to wear a sweatshirt and pants, and he responded with "Pants? Weather? What's that?" I was going to include the readers of the G-lines newsletter and take a poll as to which one I should select, but I had to make this decision myself. So, I asked myself if I should take a job in Puerto Rico, 600/ week plus 50% commission on guaranteed lessons (45 per hour), paid apartment no taxes, low healthcare, paid airline ticket, paid trip to Long Beach to train with other windsurfers. And then I rebooted with the job in New York, with people that I've met before that I like, 45K before taxes, no apartment, benefits taken out of my paycheck. This was tricky, because this was the job I went to school for and the job full of built-in opportunity with a record for a fast pay raise. I didn't ask my colleagues, because I asked some random person, and they said, "Think about the job with the most opportunity." What opportunity? The opportunity to be happy or the opportunity to make more money? I chose happiness. The most successful entrepreneurs say, "Do what you love and the money will come." So, I'm leaving for Puerto Rico on Wednesday, November 30th. I have my notable high school reunion tonight, which I will prepare for now, and then tomorrowi pack my uncle Jack's army bag full of summer clothes and two pairs of pants. To justify my decision... when Lisa called me, she asked me how the weather was in Boston. It was that bitter cold November day that was sandwiched between two record breaking fall days, so I responded with "It's cold, too cold to think of windsurfing." And she said "My God, we got to get you out of there." And early in September, I was encouraging a fellow windsurfing friend to follow through with his plan to work in Bonaire (the windsurfing capital of the world,) and he said pointing to our board shorts, "Liz, look at us! We're different. We weren't meant to live in Boston, or any other cold city. We were meant to windsurf and live the lifestyle of a pro-windsurfer. How long do you plan on wearing those board shorts?" I said until it's too cold. And he informed me that there are some places out there, where people wear board shorts year round. I welcome the city that promises to never let me experience cold feet, winter legs and fear that my wet hair will freeze.

And after seeing the first frost, which was months ago, I experienced the worst glare that a windshield could offer. and I thought, can't I make a glass that reduces the index of refraction, so a light can't hit the glass and reflect of of every nook that the frost left? As of Wednesday around 7PM, It's not my problem.

Friday, November 11, 2005

You got nothing to lose but your governement shoes

I have applied to so many positions, I'm surprised that I haven't been offered anything yet. There's another interview in New York on Tuesday. I'm thrilled, but I may not go this time. This interview is for another great agency, but I can't stand going to New York and coming back empty-handed. This mood may have been triggered by an email that I got from Blue Dolphin WaterSports, in Puerto Rico. Apparently, every major windsurfing resort in Central America has been tragicly struck by a hurricane, except the Hyatt in Puerto Rico. I have been asked to teach windsurfing and sailing in Puerto Rico. This job includes a paid trip to Long Beach, California, where I will learn how to train instructors. Then I will be flown to Puerto Rico, where a paid apartment is waiting for me. I would start out by training the instructors how to teach windsurfing and sailing, then I would help manage the whole program. I haven't said yes or no yet, but a detailed job offer will be emailed to me by tomorrow. (Take notes, ad agencies.) If this offer breaks the 40K mark, then I'll see you all in Puerto Rico. If it doesn't then I have yet again been sidetracked by my own fantasies of becoming what may never be possible, a pro windsurfer. I am now forced to look for positions in retail. I have a feeling that soon, you will see me at a participating Starbucks. My next post, will be about a past great idea, called JAMAI.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Swipe too slow to proceed!

I had arranged to spend a week in New York to attend three scheduled interviews and so far, the week can be easily summarized in the first phrase I saw when I got off the train. I took my time with my Metro card in an ebbed Boston-like manner, and I was abruptly halted by the iron turnstile, which unkindly said to me, "Swipe too slow to proceed." I immediately fell behind in time and slapped myself for not rushing through the city like a proper New Yorker. My first interview of the week was at Life Brands. The two and a half hour interview consisted of 4 separate interviews. 3 kind people, who assured me that I would learn everything in the agency within a few weeks, and 1 creative director who tore my portfolio apart, and put me on the spot with questions he knew I wouldn't know. I thought interviews were all small talk, and now I have to elaborate? With one strike already, I had to make the rest of the week worth while. I had two interviews today. One was with a creative staffing firm and the other was with Harrison and Star. The creative staffing firm told me that they don't know if I can get a job in advertising, and after I told them all of the firms I had contacted, they let me know that I have officially tapped the New York industry dry. They introduced one company that was a gem, LLNS, which I was excited about because they are an omnicom company. On to the next interview with Harrison and Star!!! H&S is an Omnicom company, and Omnicom heads companies like BBDO and DDB which handle Nike, Pepsi and most Superbowl Ads. One of BBDO's founders is Bruce Banton, which is my hero, and someday I want to be the Creative director for a major account at BBDO. So, anyway, I was really excited to have this interview at Harrison and Star, because this position will spawn a tall ladder. As important as this was to me, it took about 15 minutes of me pitching my portfolio to the HR director, and leaving my portfolio to be reviewed by the Creative director. I know that there is a lesson to be learned regarding the last couple times I left my portfolio at an agency, but this is Harrrison and Star, so for them I made an exception... again, and I pick up my portfolio tomorrow morning at 10AM SHARP. This was emphasized on me, but I bit my tongue, because when it comes to picking up my portfolio, no one is sharper than me. Tomorrow, I have another interview with a brand new company, which was set up on the fly. Naturally, I have never heard of them before, but I plan to hold my head up high and swipe my card a bit faster this time.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Saatchi lives and lets my unborn career die

Last week was monumental. I had a job interview at Hollister Creative AND Saatchi Saatchi. At Hollister I was greeted by an Andrea Mitchell look-a-like, who had nothing but positive things to say about my portfolio. I was given some critical advice about my presentation, and promised an interview at the Arnold agency, (a large agency in Boston, who recently lost the VW account.) I was told to keep in touch, but I quickly forgot about her, when my interview date for Saatchi Saatchi was finalized. Last friday, I took an impromptu train ride to New York in my suit with only my portfolio in hand. Again, I received positive remarks about my portfolio and presentation, which I spent the past two days perfecting, and I left my book for the creative team to soak in. It has now been a week since my interview, and I have heard nothing. I don't even have my portfolio book. Positive remarks are already leaving me feeling numb. If I'm so talented, why aren't I being hired? I haven't even received an offer from anyone. I have an interview with Arnold coming up, so I guess I have until then to figure out what I've been doing wrong. To raise the stakes a bit, my job at Community Boating ends in 8 days. I've cranked the notch up by contacting almost every creative staffing group serving markets in Boston, New York and Los Angeles. My luck never fully runs out. You may beg to differ with my job finding difficulty, but a few days ago, I received a call from Johnny Rockets, letting me know I'd won a free lunch for 15... in Philadelphia. I couldn't transfer it to Boston or a close friend, so I had to pass it up, but I'm still a winner.

Cold dry skin and a constant reminder of my aptitude for hypothermia has made me think of Los Angeles and windsurfing. After discovering that I disliked San Francisco, I've lost touch with both watersports and California. I heard a rumour that San Diego has so little wind, it's called the windless city. Imagine a beautiful day without windsurfing. I just couldn't imagine it, so I stopped imagining my life in California altogether. But I love copywriting, watersports and warm weather, so naturally, I drifted back to Los Angeles.

...No inventions, but I had a strange experience. My sister and I went to see "In her shoes," which is definitely a film that two sisters should see together. At the end of the film, we both thought that a particular event was going to happen. We pinpointed together with our gasps as to what we thought would happen, and it didn't. I'm not sure if this was something the director was planning to manipulate us with, or if there was an alternate ending, but this particular incident freaked me out. Seriously, if you have a sister, (girls) I encourage you to see this movie together and report back to me, anything you thought about the film. My email is info@lizglines.com

So, it's back to applications, resumes and writing samples for me, but the Arnold interview is the next cornerstone. Cheers.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

The World is Flat

It seems as though strings are being pulled to find me a job. I have three Creative staffing firms from different parts of the country looking for a copywriting position for me. Mr. Metro is from a staffing firm in New York. He told me there is a position open at Saatchi Saatchi. I finally have my portfolio together and some time during this week, I'll be driving to New York for an interview. In the meantime, Mr. Metro is searching for other possible agencies who need a copywriter.

Back in Boston, Hollister Creative Staffing has arranged an interview with me tomorrow morning. They represent some major agencies in Boston. I have rearranged my portfolio ten times and yet they still insist that I just bring in two samples of work. Of course I support them in their "Malcolm Gladwell says that a thirty second hunch means everything" approach, but I have never interpreted the testament of Blink from this perspective before. What if I choose the two worst samples? What if they don't understand that I had to make certain captions too short for comfort?

The Boston Ad Club actually has members, who work for an ad agency, and forums that actually help them out in their field. (That's a joke, because every other Ad Club has salesmen who sell ads. They say they're in advertising, but they know nothing about it)

This is something I've noticed and I'm stressing over whether or not I should mention it during my interview, should I get the chance.

In my anxiety, a creative staffing firm from Las Vegas responded and they are working on finding me a copywriting position in New York or Los Angeles. We'll see.

Aside from the good news of moving forward through the job search process, I have decided not to finish a book, which I have only done in the far past, out of rebellion from past reading issues. Barack Obama's "Dreams from my Father" began with a punch to the chest as you realized how he was raised. Then midway, conveniently called Chicago, the book took a boring turn as he bitched about red tape in the ghetto. Yesterday, I just closed the book and started "The World is Flat," which is a best seller, because Friedman is a good writer, not a politician. I am slightly dissapointed by Obama's writing style, or rather Obama's writers' style, but I will still vote for him should he run for presidency.

It's too cold to think straight, but I am longing to be a creature of habit, so wish me luck on my job interview. Cheers.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

I'm down. Just kidding, I'm resilient!

Every time I fail at something, I always find a way to bounce back. This is one of the traits that I truly like about myself, because it allows me to take risks and know that I can allow failing to be a step forward. The windsurfing scene at Cape Cod is filled with vibrant personalities who support each other through learning windsurfing, but among the crowd, you'll find a mundane who claims to have never fallen off of his board for years. He's never cold, but his turns and manuvers are safe and slow, and if we weren't so captured by the fact that he doesn't ever fall, we would be saving these glances for watching the tide come in and watching glass corrode. This reminded me of how I want to live. I don't want to ever be the woman that never fails, and is still swimming in the kiddie pool with duckie wings and an oxegon tank. But I want to find that balance of safety that keeps me happy and risks that keep me from wondering, "what if?"

I somehow feel compelled to show what emotional elements are inspiring me to act in these crazy ways. The last day I saw my high school classmates was graduation night. Gossip was over, because we had already ostracized those, who weren't going to Ivy league schools, so I was let into the conversations of the girls who made the superlative list. They were trying to figure out who would make the most impact after school. They followed by describing the traits of this incredible person, and I suddenly got this excersion of energy. I stood in the outside of the circle, where I usually was, and I smiled. I smiled, because they were describing me. From that point on, I had this feeling that any minute, I was due for a major impact on society.

This flashback is flickering in my mind, because Saatchi Saatchi wants to see my portfolio. They are a really good advertising firm, and I said something to make them give me slightly more than a New York minute. I wonder what I said. I must have been tired and they mistook me for an idiot savance. Well, either way, they are half right. I'm either talented or completely lost. This is my ticket to the next step in my cloud and yet I can't help but wonder how my board is doing...

Yeah right. I refused to sell any of my equipment. My board is the backbone to my resilience. I couldn't lie, but that would have made one powerful ending.

Monday, September 26, 2005

The college interview question that I finally answered

The question that everyone wants to answer their senior year of high school is "Where do you see yourself in ten years?" We initially apply for pre-med and pre-law programs for the sincere purpose of unearned money and free stuff. Since my senior year, I've changing my majors five times, and the spoke landed on Dramatic Writing the day school started. One by one, I picked up hobbies, hoping that they could be possible vocations. A recent engagement for my close friend led me to finally ask myself, "Where do I see myself in ten years?" And I finally had an answer. I saw myself as a copywriter for a modest aggressive ad firm. Although, the 60 hour flourescent dimming office week would have me buckled for stretching my arms past my armspan, I still imagine a hint of freedom. The freedom to move forward past the infrequent paystubs of a freelancer. The freedom of expecting part of my future so I can ask for the unexpected.

I have applied to numerous copywriting positions in both the Los Angeles and the Boston areas. I feel like I need to move to Cali quickly, because I'm a sucker for the New England foliage. Bitter morning frost has already begun to sting the tip of my nose, and the smell of wood stoves that have spoiled themselves with hickory has made me hungry for holiday weight in preparation for hibernation. If I don't move to Los Angeles soon, I will stay to watch the snow chase the leaves to the ground. And I will curse myself, when my socks freeze, and I'm snowed in, and I get a Christmas card from my cousins in the OC wishing me a bright and sunny holiday. What have I done? Why aren't I in Los Angeles already? Well, I've decided to let company offers be the judge of my destiny. As of now, it looks like I'll be spending the winter wondering why there is no home in New England that heats their bathroom efficiently.

Inventions for this week are sparse. Besides the old " build a bio-dome over the entire city of Boston" idea, I can't think of anything. I have two interviews for a copywriting job in Boston, this week. Let's hope I either screw up, or the bio-dome idea sells.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Special Segment: IPod Technology

I thought it would important to document all of the business ideas I have, because they are often forgotten long before my next post. This is also an attempt to post more frequently. I took a peek at random blogs and realized I am lacking posts and pictures. Although the G-lines are designed for the more advanced reader who doesn't want to be vented at, I figured I should still push the press for a weekly publication, at least.

There's a market for IPod technology. Bluetooth exists and IPods exist. I suggest we bluetooth IPods. I am not a fan of wires, so with bluetooth technology, you can just throw your IPod in your bag and look like every other business man on the street, except you'll be rocking to your favorite tunes, while the others are working. Just think of the impact that bluetooth can have on the IPod. I want to expand bluetooth, so that these new IPods can project at a much farther distance. So you can share earpieces with the soccer team and go on team jogs listening to the same music. It's just like carrying a boombox, except it doesn't get heavy after a while.

While we're on the topic, I also think that we should be able to link IPods together in a way that we can share music with each other. I understand that it is possible to share music files online, but the option to plug in the cable is there, and the technology is available. Nintendo came up with a connecting system, so two gameboys can play each other. This shows that you can build a computer that small to make a similar option for two devices. Someone had suggested to me that IPod purposely doesn't make this, because they want us to buy music rather than take it from our friends. That's okay, I don't plan on being an Apple distributor. The cables will just happen to fit IPods and be possibly illegal.

I have to stop this segment early, but keep on trucking and stay tuned for frequent posts, pictures and a possible conversation about an Animal Planet Show on an urban setting. Cheers.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

If you're going to San Francisco, make sure you wear... a coat!

Land has shifted since I last posted, which tells me that I may not be fit to attain my goal of writing 2 to 3 blogs per week. I apologize for not posting curt opinions regarding the notable hurricane and its effects like many other bloggers. In biting my tongue, I now realize how hard it is to be an unbiased source. Anyhow, I couldn't watch the news any longer. My tanline was fading and I had to act fast. I packed my bags and headed for frisco. The first stop was Las Vegas. The passenger beside me informed me that vegas air was "just like sticking your head in the oven." I never saw him again, but I did feel like the weather was respected by few, including Sylvia Plath. Upon landing in frisco, I knew that I didn't bring enough warm clothes. The air is a late autumn dry breeze, which is not easily depicted in the tropical foilage and cold blooded locals wearing t-shirts and board shorts. The water is a sting, colder than Maine lobsters can stand. I took three expensive bus routes to the surf shop only to find that the months in Costa Rica pay close to nothing, so the only time I'd be getting paid would be in this balmy frisco weather. I was thinking of this company in San Diego that was interested in my writing abilities. I had to ask myself, "Am I willing to give up the best windsurfing breeze in the country for warm weather, a hammock and a writing job?" YES. So I turned down the job, and went home. San Diego likes my writing style. I think he's just a sweet talker, just like Oregon said I reminded him of a girl training for the olympics, but I'm buying it, so I need to think of ways to save enough money to move there. Next week, I'm selling my gear at a flea market. With my 3 sails, 2 masts, boom, board, extensions and kiteboard, I expect to raise around $2,500. I am not completely abandoning my love for windsurfing. The West Coast has year round windsurfing facilities, so I don't really need my own gear. In addition to working for CBI's infamous adult program, which will fund nothing, I'm arranging to teach my very own windsurfing clinic at Franklin Pierce College. I'm thinking that will bring in $500. The decision to sell my board won't be easy to fulfill, but I sense it's for the better. Until then, craigslist is my destination.

My new invention ideas have been borderline mundane, but I think amongst them is a diamond in the ruff...

So, I have been infatuated with the idea that ad google will pay anyone money to give them ad space. You just need to have an uberous amount of hits a day to make a decent living. Instead of cold calling people and begging them to read my blog, I've decided to talk some people into linking my site into theirs, and encouraging them to get their site linked to someone else's and so on. If one of us manages to get a frequently hit website on our chain then I am golden. It's just like the pyramid scheme, except I'm scheming ad google, not innocent consumers.

Have you ever been tired of staring at that boring plastic beeper, when waiting for your table to be ready? These new beepers have helped restauants in shopping malls prevent loitering in the lobby, allowing the shoppers to go about their business until their table is ready. But the tired shoppers still sit there looking at those beepers with their minds on food. My idea is that every beeper should be a handheld videogame, and when the player wins, his table is ready. This device is rigged so that the player won't be able to win UNTIL his table is ready. For security purposes, the game will not be able to resume again until placed in the charger. Just like the beepers, the restaurant hostess can easily page the party for their table, except this page will release the nintendo genie, allowing the player to beat the game.

I encourage you all to keep reading, spread the love and feel free to comment. Please let me know what you think. This blog has turned into something I care about very much. I will leave you with a short quote from Faulkner. "The past is never dead and buried --it isn't even past."




Tuesday, August 30, 2005

I've never been there, but I know the way. You can just visit, but I plan to stay.

This past week marked my last time working at Community Boating, the boathouse on the Charles River. I have retired there, and I hope to surprise my accountant with an unusual tax deduction stating that I worked my ass off. Over the course of the season, I have completely transcended my goals from writing oriented to windsurfing. A single post on the classified section of iwindsurf.com sparked a vast interest that currently has me wrapped in travel far more than the likes of crappy baja, which I understand only has composted toilets. I opened my first email and found a message from Hood River, Oregon. It turns out that there was only one frosty week left in their season, but because I wanted to visit the windsurfing capital of the nation, I bought a two-way ticket to Portland (brrr.) At this point I realized that my wrist has been hurting for three months. I had developed tendonitis, and a quick offer to San Francisco led me to cancel my Oregon trip. After checking out the website and the benefits, I really want to take the SF job. They offered to fly me out there, but because I'm a dumbass, I insisted on flying myself. The conversations I had with the two owners was team/ family like. They really stressed that they wanted me to improve my skills, so I can teach more. The best part of this job... from November thru April, they are based in Costa Rica. This particular area of CR is very windy all the time. I leave for SF on September 8th for an interview. While attempting to put together this adventure, I received interest from shops in Belize, Maldives, Jordan and Maui. Last time I checked, Jordan was in the Middle East and I made my room mate promise to break my leg when I was drafted, so that was not going to work. The shop in the Maldives asked me if I spoke any other languages other than English, and I said that I took Latin in high school. I have yet to hear from them. The shop in Belize turned out to be one person, who only believed in comission. I don't. This long list came down to Maui. I had an unusually long rap with Mauiman, and apparently I don't know my way around Maui to be a head instructor, so I would have to be an assistant of some sort. I agreed with him, but I want to move to Maui, so I convinced him that I was worth the trouble. When I get back from SF, I have to remember to fill him in.

On the flip side, I'm still attempting to write once in a while. I officially started my vocation as copywriter of GoLookInside. My job description is to edit scripts for streaming video commercials. The minor glitch is that the company hasn't acquired enough work for everyone, so I've spent the last two days waiting for work. Since this new job is a work from home process, I can assure you that I've found other things to do. Hopefully, someone will find me something to do soon, because this week's inventions/philosophies are absurd.

So supposedly there is this theory that the movement of plates have caused the Pangaea to spread out into seven continents. Have you ever thought that the earth's hot inner core has expanded over time, causing the single continent to separate? Don't hot things expand, and don't they explode when contained in cold objects? Isn't that called a volcano. So forget about plates, because I have it all figured out. The earth is exploding slowly. Gravity holds it together well, but not well enough. There isn't enough pull. If there was enough, then tell me why these "plates" are shifting and causing volcanoes. Gravity is fucking weak. If a feather can beat gravity, so can the earth... just an idea. Until next time, let me leave you with a Robert Louis Stevenson quote. (I've been reading again) Cheers.

"For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move; to feel the needs and hitches of our life more nearly; to come down off this feather-bed of civilization, and find the globe granite underfoot andstrewn with cutting flints."

Saturday, August 20, 2005

And the dreams came crashing down

You must always trust that the reliable source can make the most unreliable mistake. Bob Marley once said "Only your best friend knows your secrets, so only he can reveal it." I have counted on so many sources that when every plan fell through, I ended up jobless in a week with no money. But the lesson to be learned here is to bounce back with more creativity and more job applications. This week was a rough one. I received a kind yet heartbreaking dismissal of my Baja job. During the course of this month this random woman called me from Las Vegas offering me a writing job. As soon as I let her know I was interested, she started second guessing me and later informed me that I no longer qualify. This particular instance felt like the moment where your friend calls you and her first line is, "I can't talk long." Why Las Vegas called me in the first place is beyond me. After the multi-letdown instances I was somehow still riding high, so I entered an essay writing contest to win tickets to the Rolling Stones at Fenway Park. I lost. I need to get in touch with the Boston Scientific contact. My immediate contact is on maternity leave, which makes it very hard to connect, but I will. After all of this disappointment, I came across even more. The 65 footer that cost the owner over 300 grand is somehow not worth replacing the GPS system, so our adventurous trip during hurricane season is shot. However, I am happy to say that I have bounced back despite the hardships. I went surfing last friday and dropped by Sailworld and bought some awesome gear. It also turns out that Brian's Windsurfing in Hood River, Oregon, needs an instructor for the last week of their season, which is the week after our last week. Hmm. Looks like I'm going to Oregon. It's just for a week, but the instructor over the phone said that I remind him of this woman who is training to race in the olympics. He's a sweet talker. I have suddenly been flooded with visions. I want to make windsurfing so popular that it gets high ratings on national television. I also want to see freestyle be an olympic sport. I also want all of you non-windsurfers to know what I'm talking about when I say freestyle, gecko, ezzy loop, vulcan and the Moreno twins. I'm using this week of disappointment and I'm channeling this anger toward applying to as many jobs as I can. I'm also creating some freestyle tricks of my own, and even though I can't do most of the existing one's, I still want to be on the Roxy team and get free stuff.
When I am in despair, it takes about a day of doing nothing to jump back on my feet. Here are some inventions I have thought of while sitting on my dairy eire...
-Imagine a television, where every color pixel is physically retractable. Designed like a robotics toy, the broadcaster simply types in how far each pixel extends, which is then broadcasting to every participating television showing you just how pregnant Kelly Ripa is, or how long Adrian Brody's nose is. On the corners of every pixel is the proper color tone.
Some freestyle tricks that have never been done: a floater on a wave, a wacky kid flip, a hopping gecko, double loops, jumping from a rail ride.
Something that helped me keep going. Some kid asked me an obscure question that I somehow knew. From that he thought I was smart and said, " That's right, you went to Drexel." This gave me the boost I needed. I'm going to apply to every West coast resort I can find. Cheers.

Sunday, July 31, 2005

A handful of opportunties and yet no where to go

It has been a long and eventful week full of planning and preparation. However, I haven't advanced in life at all this week-- similar to college life. I began this week with the soarness of the triathlon, which I only finished, placing higher from the bottom up. At the last minute, my surf clinic plans were cancelled due to the last minute freak out of how much energy this triathlon thing would take. I have also pondered very modern philosophies. This particular one revolved around the film, Chinatown. When the cameraman is viewing the forbidden couple from behind the bushes, we see the couple from the camera lens. The image is right side up, but it should be upside down. Then I thought of our eye sight process which corrects this in our minds. The image is flipped somehow when it goes through the pinhole of the camera or our pupil. Our brains flips it back so we're not looking upside down all the time. BUT, what if what we see is right side up and our brain is making us look upside down all the time? This is not a philosophy, but rather a silly thought that often hits an avid reader's mind.

As for the windsurfing update, I've perfected my deep water beach start, one step closer toward the waterstart, and I sold my "slip" techno, the transitional board that I never needed, and I bought a one hundred liter custom ASD. This board is a sinker in light winds, but I love it to bits. It's almost new, but I got it for $250, because it was on consignment. Sweet. The kiteboard I won in the raffle came in the mail the other day, and it's gorgeous. It's too bad that I'm not ready to try kitesurfing yet, so it's for sale in the classified section of ikitesurf.com. I usually don't look a gift horse in the mouth, but these guys gave away this board at a windsurfing event, so they shouldn't expect anything less from me. The woman from Baha, as I like to call her, has now narrowed the job applicants to two, me and some other hopeful, who I am dying to meet. Baha woman asked me for another reference-- one from the women's clinic. I feel like I keep feeding her all this information and she knows she wants to pick me, but she senses my fear and she wonders why I am fearing. She is thinking, there must be something wrong with her, I need an excuse to dismiss her from the list. I really want to find the other applicant. I'm not sure which of the two approaches I'll use to greet her, when I do. The first approach is friendship. We are both in the running and there's no reason why she's not as anxious as me. I would develop a support group for the both of us. The second approach would be a conspiracy to find her a bigger and better opportunity. I could hire an underwear model to lure her somewhere else. It would work for me.

A new adventure has arrived on schedule. One of the members of Community Boating has asked me to help shuttle a 65 foot boat from Boston to Florida Keys in late August. In return for this weeklong adventure that I would pay to do, I will receive $1500 dollars and a paid flight back to Boston. The end of the summer is looking bright. I have possible writing contracts at both Boston Scientific and GoLookInside and my manic mind is spinning with opportunity.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

A glutton for punishment

I was planning to post when I found out whether or not I'll be an instructor in Baha. Well the stakes have fooled me. Apparently this position is more of a rigorous process than I thought. They had to narrow down the twenty applicants to six people. I made those cuts and had a phone interview and sent in a few pics of me windsurfing. Now I'm in the running out of three people, and it's coming down to the recommendations. It's been a solid month since I've first applied, and it's all I can think about. If I am chosen, I have to learn Spanish and waterstarting in three months. I am confident that I'm capable of this, but I'm still in the running and it's eating me up inside. In the meantime, I've created a paid weekend packed full of fun that others would pay to get out of. This coming Saturday is a surf clinic taught by Quiksilver and Roxy pros, located three hours away from my house and beginning at 8:30. Following this is a large pasta dinner to get ready for my mini-triathlon on Sunday. 1/2 mile swim, 10 mile bike ride then a 3.2 mile run. This is my version of a weekend bender. Maybe I'll throw in a windsurfing session on Friday and call it even. Hopefully, I'll find out if my winter will be filled with Tacos, Deserts and brown Christmas trees... oh and five months full of high winds and killer windsurfing. It may become quite the hard knock life. Cheers.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Windsurfing influences make a brave attempt to sidetrack my writing career

Wow! It has been a long time since I've posted. It surprises me how easy it is to forget about keeping record of my busy life. I wonder why. Well, as usual, my entire life has changed. Windsurfing instruction takes some physical wear to both the head and the body. I had decided after careful consideration, to postpone the WGBH project until I have more focus. But the idea is still on the back burner. Collaboration is trickier than I thought. However, I need to continue my writing over the hefty physical work schedule. Conveniently, a friend of mine has decided to start a magazine based on African and Caribbean culture in the US. They need writers and I've suggested to write some articles at no cost under my secret Caribbean pen name. If she likes these articles and the magazine is successful, we work out a deal. If not, well, there's always windsurfing.

And while looking at iwindsurf.com, I stumbled upon a wonderful employment opportunity. a windsurfing instructor is needed at Vela Resorts, Baha California. A highly priced salary, lodging and a daily food stipend is provided with expected tips and options to give private lessons. So, I applied, and now they've narrowed down the applicants to 6 people including me. They have my resume, my crappy phone interview and now they want a picture of me windsurfing. I politely asked why, and they said that a majority of their applicants don't actually know how to windsurf. Now that I think of it, I would probably apply no matter what. Wait a second. You are probably thinking, 'What happened to the whole writing thing?' Well, I really feel that this pathway will lead to my writing venture. If I get this job, I can pay off school in two years, and then I can afford to live in a box under a bridge in LA. You can't blame me for choosing windsurfing over writing. My windsurfing season began with an amazing clinic that somehow I became the instructor for. And I won a $500 kiteboard in a raffle. That's $500 worth of windsurfing gear, that the local shop will trade in for me. I'm beginning to think that I am not skilled in any way, but rather the luckiest person alive. Let me leave you with a quote that describes my views very clearly.

"Ask no guarantees, ask for no security, there was never such an animal. And if there were, it would be related to the great sloth which hangs upside down in a tree all day every day, sleeping its life away. To hell with that, shake the tree and knock the great sloth down on his ass." -Ray Bradbury from Fahrenheit 451

Next week I find out if I'm spending the winter in Baha or not. I may also come across some writers at a local event in July, so stay tuned to find out which direction my crazy mind will spin. Cheers.

Monday, June 13, 2005

History Lesson: Part Deux

It took a while, but I have been busy making headlines, so my next post would be more exciting. I'm excited to tell everyone about my new ventures, but I fear that my motives won't make sense until I finish the history lesson.

So, my excuse to not live in Philly. Well, my roommate and friends had just got back from Jamaica, and told their elaborate story of laying on the beach, drinking, swimming, eating and not making their beds. I was especially interested to know that some of them took advantage of the windsurfing lessons offered. The windsurfing remark completely boggled my mind. I went to Philadelphia as a windsurfing enthusiast, and completely lost touch with all watersport activities. I'm a certified windsurfing and sailing instructor, and I won all kinds of stuff that windsurfing schools like, so why I was in Philadelphia, where the largest watersport is rowing (I rowed one year, never touched the water once) is beyond me. It turned out that I won one of the essay writing contests. I won the chance to meet the Bangles, my favorite band. I was in awe the entire trip, and didn't tell anyone, because I didn't believe it, myself. On a side note, I often feel that people think I lie a lot, because I plan out ten paths for myself, and I end up going down only one at a time. So, when I say, "I'm gonna start a t-shirt designing business" or "I'm going to business school," in the back of my mind I was also planning the path I'm taking now. Something as grandious as meeting the Bangles could only be believed by those who trust me and know my character, so my California trip was known by few people. I brought my screenplay with me, because my advisor helped me pay for the trip, and he wanted me to take advantage of my connection. When I was there, I met a screenwriter, Charlie--someone, who actually makes a living writing screenplays. He gladly accepted my screenplay into his hands and said he'd comment on it. I didn't have to attempt to be outgoing or anything. He gave me some serious advice to get into the field. He said I have to live by three rules. 1. Move to L.A. 2. Meet and make as many contacts as possible, whether you think they are useful or not and 3. Sleep with as many women as possible. That last one caught me off guard too, though I wouldn't put it past me. However, I walked away with enough helpful information, and enough inspiration to come back to Philly, with a plan. So I set out applying to every windsurfing program in California. Cali may be three hours behind, but it took about three weeks for them to get back to me. By that point I had given up, and sold my soul to Community Boating in Boston, once again. I grew up in this program, and made a lot of connections so I made a contact list of everyone I knew in the media, in Boston. Most of my connections were parents of Juniors at Community Boating. Then I decided that I would write a screenplay in my off time and use my connections to submit it to WGBH. The screenplay is a TV pilot about a child of the 60s, who looks back on his life and recalls the great moments that end up in dissapointment. The content is tailored for Public Television, so we'll see where that takes me. You'll hear about that toward the end of the summer. Okay, so I'm at PAR now. My next entry will be about the present tense. Until then, cheers!

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

History Lesson

This brief history lesson will help you all understand why I'm moving to Boston. After graduation, I vowed that I would never move to my parents' home in fear that I would live there forever. So I set out on Philadelphia's business turf to look for a job. I had become very interested in copywriting for advertising firms, so I spent my last term in school putting a portfolio together for school credit. I soon found out that finding even a janitorial job at any of the Ad firms in Philly was highly competitive. I found a pattern in the work that WAS offered to me. I was offered contract writing work from many places, who didn't want to hire me full time, so I decided on the spot that I would become a freelance writer. In the winter of 2005, I fell into a writing gig with Wyeth Pharmaceuticals. This was a $70,000 project that lasted a guaranteed three months, and I loved every minute of it. I found a secret love for pharmaceutical writing and I got paid a lot. I was so confident that I was hired permanently that I stopped networking (lesson one kids.) Sure enough, when three months went by, and we were over budget, they threw out the writer. Any aspiring business writers out there, here is a valuable lesson. Businesses think that they hire writers because they are too busy to write rather than they can't write (usually the case). So I went back out to network, and I met some hardcore freelancers who inspired me to keep working. "If I can't afford to buy food, then I won't eat, then I get motivated to work harder." This quote alone, made me motivated enough to get some writing work for websites. It was very convenient, because as soon as I put in the effort again, people came from nowhere asking if I still offered writing services. I made just enough to be content as a writer. On my free time, I entered essay writing contests, and networked until I wore myself down. The advertising business was rapidly going down the aquaduct, so I had to take a step back and re-evaluate what I wanted to do. First and foremost, I decided that I didn't want to still be a freelance writer in Philly, ten years from now. Boston maybe, LA for sure, but not Philadelphia.
Next entry will continue my voyage upon my decision, and then I can tell you all about my "current" future plans. cheers!

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Opening Entry: The Purpose of this "Blog"

The prime purpose of me creating this space on Blogspot is to keep everyone informed of my current plans and actions-- and what country I'm currently in and why. You see, this past year has been a rollercoaster of decisions, vocations and random income. It came down to the point, where I forgot to tell my friends that I had to go to Temecula, CA for a week. My mom suggested, in humor, that I print a newsletter, so I gave in to the blogging craze and decided to start posting a frequent newsletter. This is strictly a newsletter of my latest crazy serial entrepreneurial ideas, including my journey pursuing them all. Go ahead and take an idea, I dare you to beat me to the punch. While you're on a plane to LA with my gadgets, don't forget to log in, because I'll be picking you up at the airport, patent in one hand, and a ticket back to your hometown in the other. This entry will not contain any current ventures, since it's the official opening. I may have to begin the newsletter entries by catching everyone up on why I'm making the current decisions that I am, but I will leave you all with this. I'm moving to Boston. Surprise. Until next time, cheers.