Category Archives: Items to Ponder

the middle finger

Give Your Coworkers The Bird

By | Items to Ponder | One Comment

I often flash the bird to a select few co-workers, but never out of spite. In fact, I have used my middle finger more times to promote friendship (or pick my nose) rather than incite someone with the four-letter f-word. Why? It’s fun and actually can break up the tension of a typical day (especially around the end of a Q). My thoughts on the “middle finger” The middle finger, or simply “finger,” would be just another digit for typing e, d, i, and k, if humans didn’t assign such a negative meaning to it. The same is true of several other gestures and words we (the human race) has so ignorantly aligned with hate and disrespectful mannerisms. The f-word, n-word, c-word, b-word, mf-word, etc. These hateful, derogatory, and downright f’d up words wouldn’t be as powerful (er, destructive) if we didn’t make them that way. So, in my never-ending pursuit of world peace, I propose we all f up what a…

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Why Experienced Entrepreneurs Don’t Want In On Your Idea

By | Items to Ponder | One Comment

If you hang around networking events long enough and engage enough entrepreneurs, you’ll eventually be approached by one willing to offer a piece of their “big idea” in exchange for your assistance. I’ve been put in this situation more than once and how I approach these situations has evolved over the years. In 2007, I was approached by a couple of co-workers who wanted me to come aboard and help them grow their startup. In exchange for this full-time position (with typical entrepreneurial ventures, a 40-hour work week would seem like a vacation) I would be paid $30,000 + a 3% stake in the company. I accepted the offer, but I was also not busy working on a startup of my own at the time, so dedicating 100+% of my mind and becoming passionate about a new project wasn’t out of the question. That first company grew exponentially, and within two years, we sold it to a much larger company. Since then, I have…

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The Engagement Paradox

By | Items to Ponder | No Comments

I recently popped the question. A bubble floating around in front of me had the words “will you marry me” nested inside it and I took a pretty little diamond ring and poked right through it. “Yes.” That’s what she said. Over the course of two weeks I have heard, “so, when/where are you guys getting married?” from every single person we have delivered the news to, whether via text message (SMS), multi-media message (MMS), phone call, social media, or the grapevine several of my friends/family keep referencing. Some of those in the know have even inquired twice. Is that something that needs to be established right away? Is it similar to engagement photos, selecting a wedding cake, buying a house, having kids, and joint-checking accounts? I do not think life should work like that. Why can’t the date and location remain TBD for a week, or a month? Why can’t the exact date and location be a non sequitur…

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Why I Avoid The News

By | Items to Ponder, Peeks | No Comments

On the way to dinner last evening, my girlfriend began reading the local news that took place over the past few days. Three alcohol-related car accidents, which resulted in two deaths; a sexual assault; and an argument at a night club that ended in gunfire, injuring five and killing three others. The driver in the fatal head-on collision fled the scene – leaving their passenger in critical condition and the female driver of the other car dead. Both driver and passenger fled the scene in another accident after rolling their car, but the passenger was later caught. Five people’s lives are over, a woman will likely have permanent physical and psychological damage, and two cowards have yet to be brought to justice. This local news could have happened anywhere in the US, and likely did – in some cases to even more of an extreme. I like believing there are good people in the world, and there are; unfortunately, the…

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Prediction: Pay-per-spot Advertising

By | Ads, Items to Ponder | No Comments

I predict that all advertising will eventually become a bidding system, or pay-per-spot advertising, similar to Google’s AdWords model. Implementing a bidding system across all electronic forms of mass communication (that are Internet-connected) and having controls in place, will increase the quality of the ads, the competition for these ad spots, and the effectiveness of the ads. Not to mention, publishers stand to make more money on each spot, which should control the cost to the consumer (print and broadcast subscribers). Remember how annoying and irrelevant early Internet ads were? Google’s AdWords model increased the quality (they actually score ads based on various criteria and won’t serve “bad” ads), and led to improved targeting, and less-invasive/more-relevant ads.1 I feel the same thing will happen within other media, too… Print. Almost all newspapers and magazines are offered online (i.e. they have a website). The ads displayed online are either media buys, or auction-based and served through an ad network. Now, these…

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My First Movember

By | Humor, Items to Ponder | No Comments

The “Birds-and-Bees” discussion with my dad didn’t prepare me for the changes I’ve seen over the past eleven days. FYI: I’m currently listening to the ‘Top Gun’ soundtrack.1 November, or “Movember,” is dedicated to increasing the awareness of men’s health risks, specifically prostate cancer and other cancers that affect men, by encouraging men everywhere to sport their ‘stache. In addition to the rise in Woolly Willy-esque beards, I’ve noticed several other changes in my daily activities and life in general. See the chart (below) for reference. As you’ll note, my testosterone has steadily increased, while failing (e.g. papercuts, spelling errors, tripping, etc.) is on the decline. In addition, I’ve experienced an average of a 30% boost in all of my man-skills, like bear hunting (without the use of forged weaponry), arm-wrestling, wood-chopping, cage-fighting and putting out fires. My awesomeness has grown significantly, spiking sharply on November 7, when I remembered to call my sister on her birthday, and the time…

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Jobs v. Passion, (2011)

By | Items to Ponder, Peeks | No Comments

Having “a job” vs “a passion” is like speed dating vs marriage. What do I mean? A few people shared some thoughts on my tweeted opinion (above), so I decided to elaborate. One of my favorite quotes, perhaps a movie line, goes (not necessarily verbatim): “Find what it is you love to do, and then get paid to do it.” Are you passionate about what you do, or are you simply in-at-eight, out-at-five? I don’t view my job as a task. You shouldn’t. Again, just my opinion. If I viewed my job as a task, my mouth would resemble ( and, I would rather my mouth resemble ). It’s unfortunate when people complain about what they do for a living. I believe that if you don’t like what you do, then be assertive enough to try and fix it, or, if that fails, find something else. To segue further into my explanation, I’m going to pose two questions: Why do people…

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Share More, Thanks

By | Items to Ponder, Peeks | No Comments

I began writing this last December, but finally feel it’s time to share…. Today, I was among the few recipients of a touching and overwhelmingly kind email from someone very dear to me. —— I want to express my appreciation and love to you. I know e-mail is a bit impersonal…I would much rather be with you face-to-face, but it is what we have. This past year has been really difficult for me with finishing school and moving to a new city. I have had a lot of fear around me “growing up” and venturing out on my own, leaving the comfort of school, and having you all so far away. Regardless, it is the knowing that you are supporting and loving me where you are…that knowing keeps me strong and happy. It has been ten years since [mom’s] death, and we all have seen so much happen. I pretend…in my mind, imagine her at those moments. I cry because I…

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You Ain’t Your Consumer

By | Ads, Items to Ponder | No Comments

I recently reinforced an inherent truth I’ve understood for sometime: I am not my customer, and without market research, I will never know him or her as well as I think. I’m sharing because it’s clear that many Bs make the presumptuous mistake of thinking they know their Cs. Last year, I setup a product-specific PPC campaign and began adding keywords/terms I thought my consumers would search with. Thankfully, I also had the foresight to add terms I was familiar with, but didn’t think they would be using – at least not as often. Turns out, the industry came up with a commonplace name for this product and were searching heavily to try and find it. However, the name they assigned was not the key term I was bidding heavily on. Within 30 days of the PPC campaign, I noticed the runt of my ads out performing the ads I spent more time and energy developing. Immediately upon discovering my…

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The Osama bin Laden™ Virus

By | Blog, Items to Ponder | No Comments

It’s amazing how many times I’ve heard that name in the last ten years, more specifically, in the weeks following his death. Earlier this month, Walt Disney applied to trademark “SEAL Team 6” and everyone was (pun in 3, 2, …) up in arms about it, claiming Disney was only out to make profit off of Osama bin Laden’s death. Please be aware, I’m about to get opinionated on your asses. Are you f#cking kidding me? Seconds after the first plane hit, someone was trying to make a profit off of 9/11, and since, almost everyone has. Let me remind you that in the week following the attacks, flag sales peaked to rates at nearly 10x the “normal” amount and a few new songs about fightin’ fer yer country topped the charts. (I could go on, but I’ve got better things to do with my time today.) Come on people…we’re upset because Walter got the idea first? Shame on us….

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