Friday, December 28, 2007
Yesterday's news about Benazir Bhutto's violent death really struck me. It was inspiring to have a leader in that area who was a liberal democrat and who's serenity gave hope for at least one peaceful solution among many. Now I'm not so sure, but any sudden stirs like this makes me flinch, because I feel like my safety is now a little less definite... regardless of what's going on in Iraq.
I really wish I had a better handle of what's going on in all foreign affairs. I'll be the first to admit that I really don't, but I know who the leaders are and what CNN.com thinks of them, so that should be a good start.
I plan on making a better effort to find that out, especially because the primary is not too far away, an I've recently realized that people in other countries have a better handle of the candidates than I do.
...what a boring post.
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Waves of Gold
You see that surfman?
He never falls.
'cause he plays it safe as a cape codder waif
and that's a problem.
He'll never become
Little Kiri Thode.
who came from Bonaire with beads in his hair
and now he's a pro,
whereever he goes...
waves of gold
The coast it glows
with waves of gold
'83 opti champ
It's his first love
and he got to wed in his Nantucket reds
but he's down in his luck
still drinking from his trophy cup.
and he still sees...
The waves of gold
The coast it glows
the waves of gold
Cape cod Wahines
In our board shorts and bikinis
Brown cut back oahus
tearing it up on the fly
don't you forget your place...
If I teach you everything I know
Where will you go?
Saturday, December 15, 2007
Prelude to Jersey City Journal Entries
My name is Liz Glines, and I live in Jersey City. It seems like I should be going to 6PM meetings on a Saturday with pizza and salad to say this. I know where I live, but it's taken me 2 years to admit to myself that I live in Jersey City and that there's a chance that I won't leave.
I first moved on instinct. I got a job and I was in a rush to find somewhere to live and I went for the cheap seedy place in Jersey to put off learning how to budget. I keep telling myself that I'll move to the city (Manhattan) within a year or two, but as time goes on, that timeline becomes less clear. I now live in an apartment building with an electric key and a buzzer, but this past mid-August, I realized that no kind of security will protect me from the drama of Journal Square as I looked out my window one late night.
I look out my window onto another apartment building. I see into windows with the same drab colors as the next, and I see people living their routine. I think that I'm nothing like them, but then I remind myself that I'm living in Jersey City too. My gaze continues and stops on a leafy backyard, lit by a porch light honing on a bright red towel hanging up to dry. The light brings forth the colors of the leaves around it and it's beautiful. I just found something beautiful in Jersey City. Who knew that in Jersey City, there was such a vibrant red towel and a porch surrounded by trees. And all this time, every form of beauty I saw, I brought over from Manhattan. Every bright color in my home was picked up on the way home from work. Who are these people that make Jersey City so beautiful as if they want to make it their permanent home? I have a red towel too, but I bought it in New York. In any case, my view is beautiful and I accept it.
I hear whispers, cars, street shouts, and a light flickers in another apartment; I can sense it. Last week, I chose to open my window instead of listening to the crotchety old air conditioner, and tonight I am learning to appreciate Jersey City. It's funny to think that at one point, I bought curtains and blinds to shut out and hide from the outdoors. Now, I can't go to sleep without the drone of cars passing by and the promise that a street lamp will never go out, so that I can lay here looking out my window spellbound by the ghettos of Jersey City.
Those wild plants you see along the highway have grown tall in this backyard, but make the yard look exotic rather than unkempt.
Okay, now I see the sketchy questionable things that make me realize that I should shut my window and turn on the air that isn't shared with the strangers outside. A cab just pulled over in the abandoned parking lot bordering the backyard. The passenger wouldn't get out, so the driver got out and dragged the passenger out of the car. The passenger scurried into the night, after hopping the fence into the backyard, but being careful not to run into the light that makes Jersey beautiful. Just then, I noticed someone hiding in the corner of the rooftop across from my building. My eyes followed her around the building. She was swaying back and forth and smoking while wandering the rooftop around the comcast dishes looking for a place to do something sketchy. As soon as she found her spot, she crouched down and at that point, I refused to look. My first thought was drugs. At this point, I thought, Im nothing like her, but we live right next to each other, we have to have something in common. She retreated to the lit door down the stairs leading to perhaps her apartment. That's night in Journal Square.
At first, I think, why does that crappy apartment get a rooftop. Us transitional, too good for Jersey City dwellers deserve a rooftop just as much as they do. But then I look at this rundown apartment and I decide that if anyone needs to escape the pressures of Jersey poverty, it's the people that live across the street from me. Older, potent, warranted souls, who get on by social security and heating their homes by opening the oven and decide not to pay rent until the collectors say so, live at that apartment. No wonder why this girl escapes to the roof every night. She does the same thing--just wanders around different lookout points, and just...looks out. And when she squatted down, I braved the potential sight of a needle and looked. She had hid from the wind to light a cigarette.
I paused for a moment. She was inside, and someone new was on the roof. There was a few of them. Chillin'. When I view people in their Jersey City element, I feel like I am like them. On the weekends, I dress in my scrubs and rugged hair, no makeup, but I don't know why. I think, although I am polite and respectful, I dress down, because I don't respect my neighbors enough to dress nice. As i realized this, I ducked further down into my sheets and eventually fell asleep.
The red towel found its way outside on the neighbor's porch again and finally makes my view so beautiful again. We're supposed to see Mars next to the moon at 12:30, so I'm gonna attempt to stay up for that, and maybe catch someone sneaking onto the roof in the process. That damn red towel is really what's keeping me up at night. It's the most vibrant red, I have ever seen.
There's a scene in my favorite movie, Kolya, where a Czech man and a Russian boy come across a language barrier. The boy is talking about his country's flag and he says "Ours is red." "Crasse" (sp?) meaning red in russian and beautiful in Czech. the man says "What's so beautiful about that? It's red...like your underpants. Now ours, ours is beautiful." The boy, knowing that his flag was red, stood his ground and continued to say "Ours is red"
I can honestly call this towel "Crasse," because it's both. Ugh, is it 12:30 yet?
The girl makes her way to the roof again. She finds a secret corner and crouches down. She continues to wander around the top of the building and crouch down. I am spellbound. What could she be doing? Am I so naive in my suburbanity that i am ignorant in common city excursions to the roof, or is this actual suspicious activity that warrants notification of the stubborn who check my purse only when I'm late for work and don't even look in the right pockets?
9/7/07 4AM (recorded at 7AM)
A fight broke out later, a verbal fight with shoulder pushes and threats. I recognize the voice of on of the women on the roof. everyday, when I lived in the real ghetto, she used to ask me for money in front of the hispanic grocery store that sold looseys. I heard her in other places too. I heard her on the streets of New York, the streets in West Philly, Northeast Philly, and often on teh show, Intervention, but everytime, she had a different face. This is the sound of a drug addict. This woman was incredibly protective of someone/something or herself. She was screaming "Get the fuck away from me!" in her rash raspy voice. She screamed to scare the man on the other end of the conversation, but yet didn't seem threatened. It was the conversation content that had me concerned. This man had a tall boxy stature, but I didn't see his face. They had a small audience of two or three sitting in the corner (on the roof) and watching. These two were the only ones standing and they followed each other around the edge of the roof, and my eyes followed them. The man kept saying "Why don't you just jump off?" His words weren't threatening but he moved into her space to eventually corner her and then backed away when she screamed again. He said that she probably would jump off, because she was so fucked up. He wasn't screaming but he had a deep voice that projected, and I couldnt help hearing him. It was like listening for the thunder after a frightening flash. For the first time in my life, my phone was set to 911, and my finger was on the send button. The man finally left and made it a point to slam the door behind him. The yelling didn't continue and I stopped caring what the others were going to do. I turned around and looked at my safe bedroom wth wide eyes and complete shock. Somehow, I fell asleep. I'm closing my blinds tonight.
I'm somewhat thankful for the cold weather that keeps people indoors, but next summer, if I'm not in Manhattan, I may just be compelled to look out my window again.
Monday, November 26, 2007
More projects will come; I'm sure of it, but I'm running a little dry at this time (hence the lack of blogging).
That doesn't mean that I don't still have theories and ideas to share.
As you may know, Conan O'Brien is taking over Jay Leno's time slot sometime soon, because, well I'm not so sure why. I'm not a fan of his comedy. I have heard that he is a down-to-earth friendly person, but that doesn't get you ratings. Turning your TV on brings you ratings, which brings me to my theory of how Conan gets his high ratings.
My dad is a fan of Jay Leno. He tunes into his show every weeknight, even during re-runs. He says that Jay's jokes are tailored to the baby boomer market. But like so many other aging baby-boomers, he can't seem to stay awake for the shows entirety. He falls asleep somewhere before the band introduction and wakes up in the beginnings of Conan. Like myself, my dad can't stand Conan and shuts it off immediately before turning in for the night. Maybe much of the baby boomer population are doing the same thing, and in turn, are giving Conan much un-needed ratings.
I apologize for not posting in so long. Now that I have current readers other than myself, it's really my responsibility that I write regularly. I should be resuming my bi-monthly schedule immediately.
Anyways, during the month of August, I wrote a nightly journal about living in the slum of Jersey City. I often woke up in the middle of the night because of the heat and my restlessness encouraged me to look out the window and reflect upon the streets that I live on. I will be posting my journal entries as a public apology for not keeping my promise. Cheers.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
I've been speaking with Blue Star Jets and they're sending me quotes for both 50 and 100 person planes. The issue is that we really want to start with a 50 person plane, but a plane that small rarely flies that far in one direct flight, so we may have to invest in a plane twice the size...
[My apologies for the lack of response. For the first time, my blog was lost on the server and I was only able to salvage the excerpt above. Moving on]
...So, as suspected, I received a quote that was way too expensive with far too may people. A Boeing 747 holding 174 people was offered to us for a mere 150,000 round trip. I spoke kindly with Todd, the owner and as it turns out, you don't get a deal with buying in bulk, when it comes to flights, and for some reason, a smaller flight could be made available, but it wasn't offered to me. So, they're gonna rework the estimate and get back to me.
I am also trying to set up a time to speak with one of the Chief Financial Officers for Jet Blue Airways. Hopefully, he can give me some insight as to what makes the airlines industry tick. I'm still trying to figure that out.
When this is all set up, the first order of business is to get a feature article of a prowindsurfer and prokiteboarder using this package with direct flights, followed by an ad of L&L Tours. We have already contacted two of the major publications that each represent both a kiteboard and windsurf magazine. Based on statistics and reader popularity, we are going with "Windsurfing" and "Kiteboarding" magazines.
And when I say "we" I mean myself plus the newest free member of our team, PR manager, Shilpa Patel. Shilpa has worked in PR for a while, and her ideas and connections with various creative outlets will be a tremendous asset to our team.
We met briefly last weekend, and she is already throwing out tv commercials and web ideas, so Im really confident in the marketing back that we will have.
I'm really tired, but I wanted to give you an update, and let you know how things are going.
My review has been rescheduled to this Friday. My fingernails are officially gone.
IDEAS: In an earlier article, I had mentioned my recommendation of investing in Harlem, and I still back that up. In fact, my latest passion is buying a boarded up/gutted brownstone on 145th Street for 200K (does it still exist) and renovating it for a rewarding hobby. And when I find the means to buy it, then I will, but for now, I am prone in Jersey City, saving and digging myself out of destitute and grandiose fantasy.
Thursday, September 27, 2007
Jesus would turn the other cheek and march home, while trying to convince other soldiers to do the same. If he were leader, he would tell soldiers in Iraq to take their machine guns, place them on the ground and start walking home, asking for forgiveness on their way. (Actually, he would probably be a Cadet)
So, when I see a leader claiming to be Christian and preaching Pro-Life in their country, while leading attacks in other countries, I don't know what to think.
As a Christian, I believe that Jesus loves everyone, whether it be an aborted infant or an irate muslim. And he loves us all the same. And it's not our job to judge. It's only our job to recognize that he exists and that he loves us all equally.
But seguing from my faith, I look at others in different religions. They all believe in one God, and they are so humble in recognizing that their existence is not their own doing, but from a power much higher. To credit this greater being, they live a certain way, defend certain rites, claim certain land, and their passion grows for this higher being. How can I discredit other religions, when the main purpose is similar? We all have unexplained faith of eternal love that gives us eternal life. And the biggest disapointment is that only one of us is right. And we all think we're right. But, we are all people living our humble lives, and there's no "I told you so" in the end. The only thing we can do is continue to respect each other, and perhaps not mix religion with politics.
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
The direct flight strategy really only brings in US tourists, so if we end up working in a direct charter flight with the windsurfing school, then I am responsible for all of the US tourists that stay at the resort. However, I'm not the one giving the lessons, or cleaning the bed sheets, or working, so my suggestion was to get 10% of all the US tourist-driven profit.
I am so glad that I'm shy, because I started the payment conversation with, "Listen, I'm a horrible businesswoman. Honestly, I would be happiest if I just did all of the Marketing and Strategy work and if you paid me what you think I deserve."
Addy responded that he wants me to get 50% of the company, and he really wants me to continue with my marketing work as a CMO (Chief Marketing Officer). I would be heading all US affairs, while he takes care of the Margarita stuff.
And I'm thrilled. This makes me an official entrepreneur. Next on the list of to do's is to:
- Start leaking out the word of mouth that L&L tours is the only windsurfing/kiteboarding resort that can get you a direct flight to Margarita
- Start developing the advertising campaign
- Gather our connections with airlines that are interested in offering charters
- Print the brochure in Spanish, because Addy's connections are in Chile
Also, at one point, Addy and I were discussing how great it was that everything had kind of fallen into place. This strategic move could be the next biggest thing for Margarita traveling. Windsurfing enthusiasts agree that Margarita is a premier place for adventure travel. And after finding out one fact after another, it just felt right to start putting together promotional materials and for the school to take this direction.
But throughout all of this, I definitely hit some curbs, which were people who didn't believe that I had thought of all of my strategic and marketing obstacles in place. I was actually approached by some non-successful businessman, who kept asking me questions, and continued with "I think like this, because I have my MBA."
If you want to be an entrepreneur, and you see an opportunity or an unfulfilled niche, definitely think of everything, but don't let someone who has a better degree or a higher company role tell you what to do, unless they can give you constructive case study examples.
In other news, my friend got a gig volunteering for Advertising Week, which is this week in New York. It's funny, because no one at Medicus (and probably FCB) knows about advertising week, because we're working our tails off while all these events are taking place. I went to an event after work at BB Kings, and heard some amazing music, before going to the Gotham Comedy place and seeing Lewis Black standing beside me before going on stage. Shilpa and I were tired and I wanted to go to the morning event before work, so we cut out early. It was late and cabs didn't roll through 23rd street as easily, but as soon as I knew it, Shilpa had hailed the limo parked outside the club, and we were taking a limo home. After a brief conversation with the generous driver, we had realized that the curt man who took this limo was Lewis Black. We had stolen Lewis Black's limo.
The next morning, Shilpa and I headed to the Time/Life Building confirming that we had in fact stolen a limo. We helped set up events for the morning and this woman I met, ended up being the vice president of ARF and was holding a panel about word of mouth marketing. This was perfect, because I really need this advice when I take on marketing for windsurfing. I had to leave the panel early for work, but Diane is going to email me the presentation.
Now, you've heard about my extraciricular involvement in advertising. I am active in applying marketing and strategy to my non-working life. I am an active participant in Advertising Week. I just wish that I could add this extra stuff to my review for work. I've mentioned that my review is coming up, and I'm trying to put together a list of improvements I've accomplished since I was hired.
You may be wondering why I'm obssessing over my review. Well, I must admit that my review at FCB was not a positive one. I was told that I was:
- Robotic and lacking character in my personality and writing
- Two-dimensional: it seemed as though my job was just a job to my coworkers and I lacked life
- I had no work ethic
The truth was I was being managed by a micromanager, who was my only connection to the boss boss, who stopped liking me. When I came to Medicus, I was allowed to be myself, my creative, hard working self. I don't want that to change.
I am in a good place with relationships, friendships and my career. My review could put one of those in jeopardy...
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Good Evening! After (counting on fingers) 6 months of research and writing and treating people to lunch for their efforts, I have finally seen the Margarita Project in layout and it's beautiful. We paint a picture and set up the campaign about two surfers trying to get to Margarita and then we still maintain the informational "take us seriously, this is real" bit. There are some minor editorial changes, but we are pretty much prepared to disk release this puppy by the end of the week. How is it, though, that as soon as we are ready to release this to the public, Jetblue, our initial targeted audience, decides to tank from their frequent expansion. Fortunately we wrote this piece with all US carriers in mind. Jetblue was just our ideal prime example, having just expanded from the US Caribbean to the British Virgin Islands (International).
The next step is to challenge my client to his homework assignment, which was making connections with these airline companies. I, myself, have made some connections, and hope to leverage that to my best ability, but let's face it, I am no account person.
And I've moved on to other potential long-term projects. Needless to say, I didn't win the Marlboro contest. It was my pathetic spree of lottery that resulted in a very familiar ending. But I have thought of some exciting new ventures...
During some market research that had nothing to do with this topic (the most enlightening ideas emerge this way), someone had mentioned that if hospitals had invested in free long-term asthma treatment for uninsured patients, they would save moeny spent on emergency in-patient hospital care that is part of the obligation that they can't refuse service to anyone. So basically, if an uninsured patient was controlled on their long-term therapy, then they wouldn't be admitted to the hospital as much, because they would have fewer asthma attacks.
But many of you who are insured are possibly thinking that it's not fair that an uninsured patient gets this kind of free treatment. But think of things this way, the hospital is saving money, so they can help people like you get the best treatment you can get and the uninsured patient is getting therapy that will help save their life. And also, this plan applies to inner city and County hospitals, where a majority of the patients coming in are uninsured.
So my plan is to somehow expose this truth to physicians, so that maybe they can re-evaluate how they can do things better. I plan to execute this on a hospital by hospital basis and promote this in a, I don't know, brochure??? I definitely see how this can be successful, but I really need a mentor to see how I can benefit from this on a monetary standpoint.
I've given you my "pro bono publico" project and now I will tell you my self-benefiting project. Recently, I've been exploring the possibility of the part-time MBA, only because I need a mentor or more information on how to carry through these projects more effectively. So, naturally, I looked up my company benefits and discovered that they don't have ANY tuition reimbursement programs. So this project would simply be to convince whoever I need to to offer such a program.
In the meantime, I have found the perfect program to enroll in. Baruch's Business school is both a reputable and inexpensive program that offers what I need. To ensure that business school is right for me, I am attending this World MBA tour, a college fair for grad school, which includes seminars given by professors, grad students and alumni by various schools around the world. Baruch is hosting the New York fair, so I am going for the sole purpose to find out what the hell I need to do next. My plan is to bring my brochure and pitch my progress and see if anyone can genuinely tell me, whether business school is the answer and what program I need to be in. I don't even know that. What would my major be? Marketing? Entrepreneurship? General Management? You understand my concern?
Also on my agenda for this weekend is the second annual Gym Day, where my friends and I wake up early Saturday morning, and go to the Chelsea Piers gym, all day. We fit in as many classes as possible and take advantage of the pool, climbing wall, boxing ring, basketball court, spa. We do it all, and we don't leave until 8PM.
With all this said, you may wonder where I find time for my job. This is all extraciricular and I actually work a lot, often until 7 or 8PM, but I still love it. My review is coming up, so I'll let you know how well I'm doing. Often times one's perspective is different than another, so even though I'm not worried about how much I've contributed to my team, there is always that measure of perspective that I have to consider. I hope I do well. It pains me to know that pharmaceutical advertising has a high turnover, because I want to work with my team for as long as possible.
One more update before I sign off. I was previously on a mission to find this series of photos by the artist Bill Ravenesi. Well I found the artist, by actually calling him and speaking to him, he told me what book to find the photos, and I had received the book and just had the photos altered and preserved to hang up on my wall. I just have to find frames for them.
I am in a happy place. Projects are wrapping up, assessments are being made and I am thrilled to have an audience that will listen to my babble. I try to update you on the latest, but if I forgot to mention something, please ask, and I will personally address it. Cheers.
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
I met this girl named Jen Stevens at a BBQ and discovered that she had joined the Peace Corp where she was put in charge of running a radion station in Guatemala to promote equal rights for women. The stories she shared about her trip were far more inspiring than any conversation I've ever had at any summer BBQ, so naturally her profile stuck in my mind.
Later in the summer, I attended another summer BBQ, where I met one of my dad's friends, who's son is into the music business and has a unique specialty of promoting underground artists in South and Central America. hrmm...
So, I am going to make the connection sometime this week, as soon as the friends of friends give me their emails!
Another connection: My mom's friend's son is a resident physician somewhere in New York. He's much older and has made his way up through the trudges of hospital rotations, and even helped write a survival guide on how to get through residency in New York. I've forwarded the guide to my friends who are in their first year of rotations in a hospital in New York, but it would be great if they could all meet, and then my friends could get the support and a figure that they could look up to... other than the head resident who is telling them to empty bed pans.
Last, I have decided to push others into completing their own projects. My room mate is an amazing story teller and an aspiring screenwriter, and I've encouraged her to continue writing. After learning of my consistent project endeavors, she had made a conquest to aquire a second monitor through her company, claiming that she would accomplish more at work. Only one week later she did, and just now she admitted that finding miscellaneous projects is engaging and makes time seem like she is accomplishing so much more. And I couldn't agree more.
That is why I continue these assignments without direction. I am my own boss, I am being proactive and it is benefiting someone--sometimes not even me, but if it's benefiting somebody, that I benefit as well.
Wednesday, August 08, 2007
This is very exciting stuff. And although, I'm superpsyched about the results of this, like most entrepreneurs, I have moved on to other things.
When I was in college, I signed up with Marlboro to receive free cigarette coupons for the sole purpose of getting a free lighter when I signed up. Since I don't smoke, I ended up giving the coupons and the lighter to someone else, but every couple of months, I still receive mail from Marlboro. And I still pass my coupons on to friends who do smoke. Well, just recently, I received an elite invitation to enter in this lame contest. Usually, I would trash it, but something told me to read through it. I found out the the odds of winning the grand prize are 1/100,000 and that those odds are based on the assumption that everyone will participate. Now I know the odds are still high, but they are unusually low for contest like this, so I'm playing for the odds.
But I've actually "moved on" to something more promising. I'd like to continue the dream of writing for PBS, so I've decided to write a few pieces to send and do some volunteering for PBS in New York.
On another note, I have narrowed down where I want to live when I grow up, in a sort of prose:
I picture myself on the upper west side of manhattan, in a four-story brownstone on a quiet high-number street, safe for kids to wander through and fill it with noise. Think: Pottery Barn and Antropology. Deep wineo reds and burnt oranges and then navy blues and off-white stripes. Hearty wooden floors, wicker baskets, white chipping paint, I am American, without the roosters. I am modern, but I need the comfort. Mahoghany kitchen tables with butter and jelly in its creases. The art on the walls should say "I am cultured and down to earth, but I don't care enough to take action on what I have learned." I am organized and clean. I appear simple through the arrangement of colors I provide, but I know the complex. Oh and the bannister bottom should be somewhat well-polished. Exposed beams would be great as well, but there is nothing more important than a polished bannister bottom to welcome visitors.
Friday, July 20, 2007
Saturday morning rolled around and after a warm jog down the coast, we went kayaking in a place, where I once applied to be a windsurfing instructor, the UCLA sailing center. We came back and got ready for surfing.
We went to Malibu beach, where one would assume contains trophy houses, pink cadillac convertibles and Ken-looking surfers. Well the waves were okay. The sets were few and far between, with about 20 surfers in line, and the coast was covered with sharp rocks, but I went anyway. At one point, we were all sitting on our boards twittling our thumbs and an older guy broke the silence and said, does anyone want to hear a joke? From that point on, the whole crowd was friendly, and we all acknowledged that when a good wave came, we would all go for it, and no one asked any questions. I caught three waves for like ten seconds each and ended each session with bellyflopping into the water to avoid the sharp rocks. I only cut the bottom of my feet. Others scraped their backs.
We hurried back to catch our reservations at Koi. There was definitely pressure to look my Sunday best everyday. A comedian once said that LA is obsessed with being skin tight and in New York, people let it all hang out. As we were escorted through the restaurant to our seat, other well-dressed seaters looked up, hoping to catch a glimpse of a celeb. They saw us instead, but it was very flattering to be mistaken. Our waiter was a good looking struggling actor/screenwriter by day, waiter by night. Jasmin got his number. And we ended dinner at the bar, where I was instructed by a stranger on how to order a drink, so he could get his drink as well, and a quick glimpse of BRUCE WILLIS as he passed by us for a late dinner in the prvate room. Jasmin freaked out, which was good because calming her down preoccupied me from freaking out myself.
We went across the street to REPUBLIC, where we asked a random what's going on inside. He said some event for Raw Entertainment, so we went to the front of the line and simply said "We're with Raw Entertainment" and in we went. Although, it sounds like something I could conjure up, it was actually Jasmin or Shilpa that pulled this one. Inside the club was where we discovered that people in LA don't dance. They sway side to side while talking over the loud music. We danced. And were often approached by guys, who started conversations with "You're obviously not from here..."
Sunday morning, we were so sore from the jogging, kayaking, surfing and dancing, so I got up and took a stroll along the beach looking for sunglasses to buy, since I broke mine from jumping out of the kayak. The waves in Venice were still sucky. I turned around and saw TOM BROKAW walking down the boardwalk. I called Shilpa and Jasmin and they encouraged me to talk to him. I said "Excuse me, sir. What brings you to Venice?" He responded in his deep reporting voice. 'We're shooting a documentary about the 60s. I used to live around here, over on Hurricane [street]' and I said something like welcome back to Venice, as if I lived there. wow.
We got ready for our next reservations for brunch at The Ivy, where celebrities are often spotted. Again, we were dressed to kill, and immediately spotted someone, who appeared to be an aged Melanie Griffith, without the plastic surgery. It wasn't her. I'm still trying to figure out who it is. Just as we were contemplating the people behind us, a woman with a tight black tanktop with her chest hanging out the sides came in, and I turned away out of disgust whispering 'too much skin, too much skin, yuck.' It was CHINA, the prowrestler. She also sat outside with a friend, and our conversation evolved into proper etiquette and dress for the Ivy and how China wasn't following it.
After the Ivy, we found parking down the street from Rodeo drive and we hit the shopping. I didn't buy anything, but we gawked at the designer clothing and jewelry, the faux Chanel runway in the store that we strutted down and the many $5,000+ dresses. I had fun finding the style of wallets and bags that I bought in Chinatown and comparing prices.
Sunday night, we wanted to stay in around the area, so we went to this drumming thing on the beach. Then people started shooting off fireworks, and the cops came and ruined it. I missed the fun cop part. I ran back to grab the camera.
Monday morning, we went to Santa Monica beach, and yes, I rode the yellow roller coaster, we went shopping along the 3rd Street Promenade and went to the beach. They were only renting boogie boards, so we all rented a boogie board and shared. The bottom of the water was soft and sandy, and I rode the high, short waves for three hours. We walked back to Venice and ate locally at a mediterranean restaurant.
I'm kind of tired of typing. It was a great trip though and I'm excited to see where I end up next.
The windsurf project is still in layout...
Thursday, July 12, 2007
I can't wait for this project to be complete.
I can't wait to truck the press release around to show airlines that Americans want to travel to Margarita.
More importantly, I can't wait until I see the results of what my work has done. Hopefully, airlines will be changing courses, people will have more options and my friends windsurfing school will flourish as it should. I will be upset if this whole thing blows over without the earth shaking a little.
I'm going to Los Angeles tomorrow for 6 days--a straight week of surfing, running and pretending to be a celebrity. My friends are excited to see an actor or musician, but I think it would be something to be photographed accidentally, because they think I'm someone of great importance. I plan on wearing the huge sunglasses and smotherring hat, because I don't really look like anyone recognizable...other than myself.
Thursday, June 21, 2007
Having received many 10-15 minute phone calls from Kitty on her walk to work, I knew that her commute was much different than mine, so when I walked her to her work on Friday, I knew there would be a major contrast in my daily routine and I spent the entire walk trying to explain just how different it was.
We exited her suburban apartment, a two-family really, and headed down the sidewalk following rows of trees. As we started in conversation, I noticed the morning light flickering through the green and brown. Real morning light. As we continued, I noticed that we were the only two people taking this path to work. I saw a few faces, that Kitty recognized as the same crossing guard, or the same kids walking to school, but they soon fell behind as we kept walking. Sometimes, the road we were walking on was so scarce, we were wandering throughout the middle of the road. We arrived at a coffee shop, where I felt relief to long lines and crowded seating.
I explained to Kitty that our work travel hardly compares...
I arrive on a crowded platform, and the first train arrives in Journal Square. Half of the crowd joins hundreds more on a train arriving at the WTC. From there, about one hundred commuters join me as I trek up the stairs and around the corner to switch trains. From there, we join hundreds more as we start the E train. Everyday I see twenty faces switch from the jersey train to the E train, but I never see those same faces again. When I do see a familar face, I feel like a lottery winner.
One more thought. When I was in Boston, I thought that mass transit pertained to Massachusetts. Now I understand the true meaning...not just transit, but moving masses of people.
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
I chose to decide that Tony died and the shot was in his perspective, hence the sudden black blank ending. And I think, in hindsight, that Chase is ingenius to show the end of Tony's life in his perspective. So the sudden black without a real ending. That's what death is.
And after my choosing, I thought. Is this what happens after death? Do we emerge from the black and say "WTF! How did I end? Where's the closure? Did my cable go out?"?
Monday, May 28, 2007
Sunday, May 27, 2007
First let me catch you up on some things. After deciding that I wanted to do my own advertising project, I decided that I would help my friend Addy in the process. I had decided to make a press kit that would convince airlines, initially Jetblue, to offer a direct flight from the US (primarily Miami) to Margarita. And the pieces to this project just kind of fit together in my head. So, I decided to just go for it, and I'm glad I did, because the further I research, the more confident I feel that this can happen.
Two weekends ago, we had quite the first photoshoot. I recruited some surfers from Boston, and what made the photoshoot so successful, was the energy and fun that came from our team. We took about two hundred photos, while walking around Boston with these kids who were lugging their surf boards everywhere. People started to stop them and ask in a teasing manner "Where's the surf?" and they responded "Yeah, we're doing a photoshoot for Jetblue." The response was astonishing. We had people watching us like we were celebrities. A group of giggly girls stopped these guys and got their picture taken with them, and when we went to eat lunch at Papa Razzi, the general manager was treating us like we were VIP. And the photos that came from this fun and exhausting day were really good. It has inspired me to continue with the not so fun part of the project.
Now I have to do the research to convince major airlines that a direct flight to Margarita is worth investing in. And so far the research has been supportive and convincing. If only it wasn't such a beautiful weekend, I may have gotten more done. haha
So, I started my weekend by going to Taj for my roommate's 25th birthday, and I treated this night like a prom. I got out of work at 1 (everyone did). I got a manicure, pedicure and facial. I bought sandals and a new bra to match my dress. And we had a blast. More than fifty people that she knew were there, including someone I went to high school with. Ten people stayed in my cramped apartment that night. Two people fit in my roommate's bed, two on the couch, four on the floor in the kitchen. Someone was in my bed and Nanu and I were up and went to sleep when three people left, so then I took my bed and she took the inflatable mattress (that no one could find until I got there). See? Ten people can stay in my apartment.
The next morning, we went to a diner nearby, and later I went running on the brooklyn bridge. The next day, I played in a long pick up game of soccer with people from Trinidad and Italy, and I went to Central Park to look for another pickup game, but didnt find one, so I went swimming at Chelsea Piers (my membership expires on June 6th). On my train ride home I saw someone that I played soccer with that morning. I went home to recharge, and went to a drum circle, which was an open invitation, which initially looked like a jam session, but it wasn't. I didn't like it. They were modern day unskilled hippies, who I'm sure were all slightly retarded.
Have you ever been to a design class, where someone tries to bullshit their way through a critique by saying stuff like "Because the sky is blue and peaceful, I wanted to portray the opposite, so the opposite color of blue is yellow. That's why there's a lot of red in the piece"? This is not logical, I know, but the professor would nod like he understood. This is how I felt when I was in this circle. There were a bunch of instruments in a circle, and after a minute of silence people would pick up instruments and play what they felt was right. It was fucking weird, and I had to pay 10 bucks to do it, so I stayed. I wanted to get my money's worth, so I played along and tried my best to blend in, which was easy, because the number one rule is that there are no mistakes. When it was over I picked up my drum and in my mind I said 'never again.' I also wondered what the ensemble was like. People were talking earlier of a professional ensemble that played the same thing. I was on my way out, when I was stopped by the cult's leader. He told me that they all really want me to come back because apparently beating the drum out of rhythm with a kazoo is remarkable talent and they need percussionists. He also hinted that there is room for a percussionist in the "elite" ensemble. What have I done? What have I done?
There's an episode of America's Next Top Model, where the models have to dress themselves as Japanese hipsters, which has a lot very flashy bright mismatching colors. The winner of that task looked at the camera and bluntly said "Honestly, I just put a bunch of sh** together, pretending I had no fashion sense whatsoever" That's how I felt coming out of that "music" session. If I ever do come back, I will drag my friends along, as a joke and tell them to put a dollar in the envelope instead of ten...
So, this morning I made a chicken, spinach and cheddar omlette, and I plan on excrcising in the city, going to the photo store to pick up a set of prints for my apartment, and find my apartment super and ask him to help me with my ad project. I need someone who speaks Spanish, because I have to call two Venezuelan airline carriers and ask them questions about why they don't fly direct anymore.
My friend just texted me. She's back in the city. I forgot to mention that I missed my friends and really wanted to spend time with them this weekend.
One more thing. I recently discovered that I have 3 huge cavities. I was told that I would need 3 root canals, no question. But She has fully dug out two of my cavities and filled them. I was in pain, but it disappeared this weekend, so it seems as though my high tolerance for pain has come in handy, even though it got me in trouble for not feeling the cavities in the first place. I still have the biggest cavity left, so I'm crossing my fingers that the same thing will happen. Peace.
I saw this video and it brought me to tears knowing that Tiger's dad died this past year.
But the video is a very well made montage of their friendship growth, how Tiger improved his swing.
Nike will be showing this commercial for Father's Day again.
Monday, April 30, 2007
I'm pumped to work now. I have that extra boost that I lose when Im not inspired by good copy and clever ads. The website for the club is www.oneclub.com. Check out the commercials in the competition. They're hilarious.
I decided to quit my expensive Chelsea Piers gym, because I can now. My year contract is up, and I think I'll join a NYSC where it's easy to get to because there are hundreds of them in the city.
Regarding the windsurfing business venture, Addy's still trying to bring back the Miami-Margarita direct flight, which is quite difficult as one could imagine. I suggested that he try to get the other bigger windsurfing schools in on it, because this would benefit them as well. I'm not sure if he took my advice or not.
Yay, back in the game. Trying to write things in a little notebook like Kurt Vonnegut did. Rest his soul.
Thursday, April 12, 2007
I did surprisingly well at the climbing competition, considering that I was sick. I came in third in the intermediate class, and I couldn't believe it. I won all this stuff, and later when I looked up my scores on the web site, I realized that all the people I supposedly beat were actually bumped up to the open class, leaving me third in intermediate.
So, the windsurfing business venture went well. I talked with these inspiring windsurfing men and women, had a few drinks and gathered some critical information in the process. In this month's issue of Windsurfing magazine, Prowindsurfer Tati Frans is documented windsurfing in Margarita. Margarita is becoming the next hot spot for affordable, resort-quality windsurfing. The main issue was that there is no longer a direct charter flight from Miami to Margarita, and the layover is in Caracas of all places. Not an airport known for its timely flights or 5 star hotels, which has recently put the standstill for American Tourism in Margarita. Yay! I feel like I figured out a mystery. So, now my buddy is working with other resorts that are suffering from the Caracas detour, and he's trying to get a charter flight oraganized again from Miami to Margarita. If this speed bump is smoothed out, there may be a jibe at the end of the carve (windsurfing comedy). I'm excited, because it has been decided that I try out the resort to report back my great time to the Cape Codders.
In other news, I'm going to be watching my first jello wrestling tournament on Saturday, and I'm psyched. I decided that I'm going to dress like I'm going to a boxing match, because the event is organized so that there are different heats and a headliner fight with my good friend from college versus my highschool classmate. It should be different. I hope no one gets hurt.
Question: So, if pressure increases as you go into water, then is it possible that the humidity in the air could affect air pressure? This is like a 7th grade science project, but I'm curious.
New Ideas: Umm, can we please get cell phone service at least on the subway platform? I was kicked off of the E train and tried to send a text message to my boss notifying her that I was going to be late, but I had to hang over the turnstile, so the message would send and I wouldn't waste a trip on my Metro card.
Also, with the "T" line to be completed by 2012 and Harlem becoming the "extended upper east side" I say it is wise to invest in property in Harlem right now. That is all.
Thursday, March 22, 2007
Hyannis, Cape Cod is a popular vacationing spot for windsurfing, but the small year round population is a close community, where any marketing about any product travels through word of mouth. In 1999, the "King of the Cape," a freestyle competition, was created to serve the burgeoning interest of windsurfing on the cape, and had a $10,000 purse, which triggered a worldwide competitive spark. This travel agent sponsored these kids from Bonaire to come and compete. So, on the day of the event, Pro-windsurfers, cape-codders, beach bums and these kids from Bonaire came to participate and these kids swept the entire competition and took home all the money. So when everyone saw these kids do all these new unseen tricks, where did they want to go for vacation? Bonaire! And who did they ask? The travel agent who sponsored them to come to the Cape!
So, now everyone from the cape goes to Bonaire, and that's the only place they ever go!
But, my friend Addy is investing in a hotel in Margarita, another awesome windsurfing area, and has put together a great plan that can get people a great trip for half the price, including airfare and rental equipment. He's putting together marketing materials, and my job is to go to the Cape Cod Wahines party and open my big mouth.
Because I taught windsurfing for 7 years, I've become very aware and involved with the windsurfing community in the Cape area, so I look forward to doing my part.
That's the big story.
My friends and I are also trying to compile a book based on emails we write to each other during work. Most of them involve updating each other on current work stories, and to be honest, I think if we get our act together, it could do very well. I've often burst out laughing unannounced while at my desk.
Also, this weekend is the Chelsea Piers climbing competition, but I just got over being very sick, so I'm rethinking whether or not, I should still compete. I climbed a 5.10b two weeks ago so I think I can do much better than last year, but I don't want to get sick again or prolong my recovery.
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
I'm looking into it. Some say that these guys are an everyday couple named Mark and Marta, although I doubt it. Other sources say that the guy is Atreyu from the Never Ending Story. Like I said, I'm looking into it...
I went to www.rembrandt.com and they ARE a real couple named Marta and Mark. Marta better watch her back.
I just came from the eye doctor, and I can barely see, but I'll give this blog update a try. The eye doctor experience was a little scary given that I've never had my eyes checked...ever, but I had all these tests done and my pupils dilated, and I need a .5 prescription for reading glasses, because I spend too much time at the computer. Go figure. I like my new eye doctor. He was very thorough and I trust his judgement, but when I asked for contacts instead of glasses, he said, "Liz, this is for function, not fashion!" so I got glasses.
So, next week I'm going on my first business trip ever. My assignment is to go to the Asthma Convention in San Diego, and attend symposiums that relate to my drug, and also pretend to be a doctor and collect as much competitive material as possible. Yes, it is an extra benefit to be in San Diego, but I'm so excited about the whole "business trip" part of it that the convention could be in Bumfuck, Minnesota and I would still go with an anticipated smile on my face. But since it's in San Diego, I have slealthfully planned some early morning surf sessions with friends in the area who will work with my inability to conform to jetlag during sleep hours.
I went to California a few years ago, when I won an essay writing contest and met the Bangles. I survived the short trip by pumping my system with red bull the entire time, and I don't consider next week to be any different. Red Bull will be my jetlag solution.
I have a new money plan. I'm currently paying off school, and when I'm finished, I'd like to move to Manhattan. Recently, I've been spending a LOT of time in UES, and I like the atmosphere of families, kids, dogs and joggers. Anyway, moving away from that...
The swimup pool bar in Manhattan has created a lot of hype, so I'm currently sticking with that idea.
Oh yeah, so the title of this blog pertains to this musical that I recently saw called, In The Heights. It's about living in Washington Heights, and it's the first hip-hop musical that I've ever seen. It was absolutely amazing. Lin-Manuel Miranda wrote, directed and stars in this soon-to-be Broadway musical. During the play they say, "If you buy'em, L'chaim," which is my new favorite quote, because it encourages you to take and enjoy opportunities offered to you.
Speaking of which, my dad works for a company that has created this open-source software. Everyone currently uses this software, so the product is successful, but now it's time for the company to make money and they need VCs to get to the next step, so I figured that I can make an extra buck somehow...but how?
I could find VCs to invest, or I could hire someone to write a how to book, like Unix and Linux did. But recently, I discovered that many open-source software creators simply don't make money, so I guess I'll just stick to the swimup bar idea.
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
Monday, January 15, 2007
Sunday, January 07, 2007
Ok, so invention time. So, whenever my phone dies, which is often, I think of this. Think of a small device with a watch battery in it that acts as an emergency phone charger. You just plug your dead phone in it and flip on the switch, and the phone can last for up to X hours.
Another idea I have is a chain of napping cafes that are throughout Manhattan. Say, you just came out of a boring meeting and you have 15 minutes left in your lunch break. You walk in and order a coffee to be delivered in 15 minutes. You then proceed to a comfortable napping chair, and doze off. In 15 minutes, you are awakened by the waiter with a hot cup of coffee. I don't know, I would go.