- each embraces New York with the intense excitement of first love, with the fresh yes of an adventurer -

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Moving On...

My friend Jamie has this theory. A theory about approaching life as if it were a media plan. Seriously? Yes, seriously. Really think about it, if life were like a media plan, we would be forced to define our objectives, strategies for reaching said objectives and identifying tactics that best fit the strategies. Maybe not such a crazy idea?

A real life example for your consideration -

Objective: Live fabulous life in New York

Strategy: Position oneself as completely indispensable
  • Sassy Southern girl taking on the city life
  • They say if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere...
Mass reach vehicle: Create Blog / Online Personality - charming, hilarious, impossible to forget
Niche media: Utilize personal communication channels and individual follow-up
Big Idea: Inclusion in the Brilliant / Highbrow quadrant of NY Mag Approval Matirx with opposite P4CB (read: full page ad)

Budget: TBD - Dependant on personal income and networking abilities to secure entertainment at low out-of-pocket cost

Phase I: Create viral buzz - blogging, social networking
Phase II: Launch brand
Phase III: Maintain awareness - remain top-of-mind and unforgettable

Demographic: Adults 18 - 54
Psychographics: Appreciation for TV, films, Broadway musicals, concerts, quality entertainment - Attitude of adventure and ambition - Enjoy life's simple pleasures - Passionate

Secure fabulous job, learn more, assert ambition, build credibility, cultivate relationships

All this to say what exactly? Well, a few things...
a) Jamie, Bethany and I are all huge media nerds and
b) Jamie has kicked-off her plan quite nicely and in order to stay on strategy, she'll be leaving her first fabulous New York job for her second.

Today is Jamie's last day at our office. It is bittersweet. Of course I'm thrilled for her to begin a new adventure at a new agency, but sadly, I am also devastated to see her go.

Jamie has been my partner in crime for almost 3 years (give or take the brief hiatus when I left the agency) and we were joined by Bethany 1.5 years ago. Jamie and I are now realizing how lucky we were to have this experience with our first New York job. Our account was fantastic and creative, our bosses were smart and supportive, and our team...I mean, I worked with 2 of my best friends everyday! We went to countless lunches, concerts, movies, happy hours. Gossiped about every TV show imaginable. Shared stressful days, nights, weeks, a few mistakes and a lot of success. It doesn't get much more fabulous than that.

I know that not every fabulous job will be like this one. But nothing will ever compare to hanging out with good friends, doing a job we enjoyed and loving every crazy minute of it. They say change is good, necessary even. So I'm feeling overly nostalgic? I'm ok with it.

Best of luck to JMart and to Bethany. I will miss our days together terribly. Please remember that all good media professionals find a way to conquer and divide. This tactic will undoubtedly keep you on-strategy. Cheers!

Monday, February 23, 2009

I love the Oscars

Ok, I love all things movie related. But I really love the Academy Awards and I loved them a lot more than usual this year. This year the movies were more interesting and I'd seen most of the big films up for awards. Which always makes a difference in how much you enjoy the 3+ hour show.

Top Ten 2009 Oscar Moments
10. Robert Pattinson! What are you doing at the Oscars? And why must you always behave so awkwardly? No judgement RPatz, I will love you just for looking ohsodreamy in that tux.

9. A.R. Rahman's Best Song acceptance speech. "All my life I've had the choice between hate and love. I chose love."

8. James Franco and Seth Rogen's Oscar-themed Pineapple Express clip.

7. Heath Ledger's family accepting his well-deserved Best Supporting Actor award.

6. Best Actor / Supporting Actor presentations. Having past award recepients speak to each nominee made the Big 4 presentations more personal, more real and definitely more emotional.

5. The Musical is Back! Beyonce, you. are. fab.

4. Ben Stiller's spot-on Joaquin Phoenix impersonation, hilarious!

3. The entire cast of Slumdog Millionaire. They are all so happy, so genuine and they feel like team.

2. Kate's acceptance speech. How perfect was it when her dad whistled?

1. Hugh Jackman's recession-induced opening number. He was a fantastic host. And this opening had me giggling the whole time. Great job Hugh! :)

And of course I have thoughts on best vs. worst dressed --

The Best...

Taraji P. Henson:
Best overall look for sure! She was super cute and sassy on the red carpet too, that helps!

Kate Winslet: Stunning

Anne Hathaway:
I love the sparkle and way to pull off the light color!

And the Worst...
Jessica Biel:
Ew, bad, bad. Dress, shoes, hair, bad.

Vanessa Hudgens:

This is what happens when you try too hard. Hate the siloutte, hate the flowery details, hate the fabric, just hate it. But on a positive note, I like her hair!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Adventures in Atlantic City

Who: Caroline, Julia, Katy and Me
Night out in Atlantic City, New Jersey
Showboat - The Mardi Gras Casino
Saturday, 4pm - Sunday, 7am
Caro's 25th Birthday Celebration

3:30pm - All dressed up in colored tights, sparkles and heavy eyeliner. In route to Port Authority (quite possibly my least favorite place in NY), where we catch the bus with the other crazies to AC.

5:00pm - Our bus driver, Andrea, welcomes us to her bus with these friendly warnings:
1. Cell phone usage is a quick way to go from passenger to pedestrian. It's called vibrate people.
2. Should you need to speak with her, do not sneak up quietly and scare the begezes out of her. She has a name, use it.
3. Keep your shoes on. Seriously, we don't need that smell.
4. She's not allowed to drink and drive, so we are not allowed to drink and ride. Deal with it.

6:30pm - "Are we there yet? I can't even think about using that terrible bus bathroom! We're close, right" - Caro

7:15pm - "Wow! Look how great it is! There's the Showboat, it's huge! I'm so excited!" - Caro

7:35pm - AC Casino Bus package = $20 back from ticket price for our gambling enjoyment. "I can't believe they just handed me back a $20 bill, an actual $20 bill!" - Katy

8:00pm -
The French Quarter Buffet. Beads! Unlimited Diet Cokes! Fried Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Mac n' Cheese, Biscuits, Shrimp, Crab Legs, Ice Cream Sundaes! The Gumbo Guy loved Caroline. Happy Birthday Strawberry Shortcake! Cheers!

9:30pm - Ohsofull. We're rethinking our skinny belts. The Buffet Hostess: "What are you doing tonight? There's a stripper show at Club Worship, who doesn't like strippers?" (um, thanks?)

10:00pm - High-rolling at the nickel slots, yes! Vodka tonic, check. Boys by the bar, check. Wait, shouldn't three 7's in a row win?!

10:30pm - Katy wins $45 on the penny slots. You'd think it was $300 from the extreme excitement.

11:05pm - Pit stop at the bar to check the one TV in this place. Omg, Omg! The Longhorns beat #1 Oklahoma 73 - 68 in Austin! Yesssss!

12:10am - $20 down. $25.35 voucher in bag. The strippers should be gone, decide to check out the scene at Club Worship. Yikes, this is NOT our scene. Death glares from chubby bachelorette dancing inappropriately for her size, Scantily clad female dancers on spotlit boxes, Aviator Guy thinks he's auditioning for So You Think You Can Dance showing off his "popper" moves, Pocahontas with bandana cloth belly top and fringe boots -

Pocahantas Hooker: "Why are you all wearing black?"
Katy's response: "Why are you dressed like a Native American?"

Yeah, we'll stick with the slots.

1:08am - Did that guy at Club Worship just call us J-Lo butts?

1:30am - I'm up $18 playing Blazing 7's, I can totally get to $20, then I'll stop.

1:57am - $.17 left. Crap. Damn you Blazing 7's.

2:35am - Sitting at the bar, decide on the 3:15am bus back to the city. Does anyone else see that guy with the fur coat and cane? He's a pimp! Hysterical laughter.

3:15am - There is no bus.

3:30am - Still no bus.

3:45am - Katy decides to ask the sketchy people waiting for buses at if any of them are waiting for a bus to Manhattan:

Katy: Are you going to New York?
blank stares.

Katy walks a little further: Do you know which gate the bus to New York comes to?
Sleepy Woman:
Usually Gate 10 or 11.
Katy to guy at Gate 10:
Are you waiting for the bus to New York?
Guy in Grey Hat at Gate 10:
I'm not riding the bus.
Katy walks away.

Guy in Grey Hat at Gate 10:
Aren't you going to tell me thank you?

4:00am - Thoughts on going to the Bus Terminal? Yes, worth a shot.

4:10am - At the Bus Terminal - We are officially stuck in this horrible place with these horrible people at 4am and we are never getting home. Why do we leave Manhattan?! Stress and sadness.

Bus attendant: "All the Manhattan buses have been full. You should go to Bally's and try to get the 4:15am bus. Or there's a 4:25am. If you're lucky, you'll get on those."

4:20am - Now at Ballys - "This is an Academy bus, you have Greyhound tickets." "Oh, where's that bus?" "How should I know? Go ask someone inside." Awesome.

4:30am - Oh thank God, the Greyhound to Manhattan. It's full. It's hot. Whyyyy???

5:30am - I think I'm dying.

LJ: I can't breathe! Julia, I can't breathe! I'm suffocating.
J: I know, it's so hot. This bar is radiating heat.
LJ: There are people blocking the aisle and I don't think I can get to the front to ask the driver to turn off the heat. Omg, I'm having a panic attack.
J (yells): Turn off the heat!
Caroline (sleepily gasps from behind): Hot!
J (hops over me and everyone in the aisle to get to the front): Driver! Driver, can you turn off the heat?! It's STIFLING!

6:50am - Despite the cloudy morning and fog, the New York skyline has never looked more welcoming.

7:15am - Finally home. And I have a whole new appreciation for my fluffy bed.

Dear Atlantic City, thank you for your charming lights and enticing games. I don't think I'll be visiting again any time soon. This adventure was enough for me. The end.

and of course, HAPPY BIRTHDAY CAROLINE! :)

p.s. My first AC one-nighter was a bit different. See Big Apple Angie and Lulled By The Train to laugh about the first time around.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

She has an addiction sir!

She's restless if she hasn't been on an airplane in 4 weeks.

She keeps a map documenting all the places she's visited.

TravelZoo, AirFare Watchdog, Travel Post, Lonely Planet and NY Times Travel are the past 5 websites in her browser history.

She is continuously planning her next globe-trotting adventure....even if she has to go alone.

She treats life like a press trip.

I'd say Angie has a slight addiction, no exaggeration.

Bahamas on Tuesday, New York by Friday, back to Florida the following Monday? No problem. Fears? Yeah right. Sharks? Been up close and personal. Cliff jumping? Let's climb higher. Scuba school? No need, done that. Surfing? Work in progress!

Next up on her adventure agenda? Operation: The Best Job in the World

Queensland Tourism is searching for an "Island Caretaker," someone to experience the Great Barrier Reef firsthand and report back with all things going on Down Under. This job is unbelievably PERFECT for my high-spirited friend! It's almost as if they had her in mind when they thought it up! I simply cannot imagine anyone more suitable to become the blogger/adventurer/entertainer personality of the Austrailian islands.

So check out Angie's video application for yourself! Actually, watch it a few times. And I predict that you will want to give it a 5-star rating immediately.

p.s. Look for me in the Today Show clips! :) And while you're watching videos, catch the deleted scenes of us freezing in Times Square courtesy of Big Apple Angie. Yes, those are my giggles and words of encouragement you hear behind the camera.

Date This Guy?

I am an avid reader of all things New York-centric. Each week I read Time Out New York magazine cover to cover - I must add that I am not a TONY subscriber, it just magically appears on my desk every Wednesday courtesy of our sales reps. Regardless, I heart the snarky, slightly irreverent, often unusual and unexpected magazine that tells me all I "need to know" about NYC every week. I am always amused by the quirky spin they put on all things-about-town.

This week's TONY was the Single's Issue. That's right, a weekly magazine that is not only filled with page after page of New Yorky articles, but also one that attempts to offer advice on dating in this crazy city of ours. I appreciate their optimism and dedication to match-making. Hilarious.

So as I was browsing through the Single's Issue on my bus ride to work this week, I was intrigued by the feature article, "Dating Made Easy." Apparently TONY talked 139 single New Yorkers into participating in this year's Valentine's Day online dating hook-ups. Wait, let me be sure I understand - all I have to do is check out a few online profiles and TONY is going hook me up with a boyfriend? Bahahaha, yes, this is getting funnier. Nevertheless, I find myself logging on to TimeOutNewYork.com once I arrive at work - hey, I was curious! I mean, what kind of guys actually sign up for this? Well played TONY, well played.

Upon clicking through the "Men Seeking Women" section, I learn that 39 men have somehow been convinced to play along with this dating game. I immediately notice that there are a lot of artsy Brooklyn hipster freelancers in this mix...interesting. Then I click to bachelor number 36 - Oh this guy is cute! And vaguely familiar. Actually, he looks a lot Neil from So You Think You Can Dance. Wait, IS it Neil from SYTYCD?! I glance at his profile description that reads: "Neil, 21, Actor, Upper West Side" Hah! Neil, what are you doing with a dating profile on TONY? And why are you trying to convince unsuspecting New Yorkers that you are an actor? Do you think they won't recognize you from your Table Dance with Sabra? No? Just me? I mean, not like I went to see SYTYCD on tour or anything... (lies, I've been twice. No shame.)

Clearly Neil's PR people were all over this lil publicity stunt. But really, I'm a lil curious as to the types of emails he's received this week. I can only imagine the craziness that girls / guys are typing to him...

Hi Neil! Loved you on SYTYCD! You are ohsotalented! I especially enjoyed the Table Dance...you know, the one where you were horizontal on Sabra? Yeah, that was the best. Perhaps we can meet up for a drink (or 10) and then you can show me how it's done! Kisses!

Good try Neil. But you can't sneak past us. You will forever be a Dancer first. And hey, if you're single in New York and you're interested, be sure to shoot him an email. Please report back with details.

Monday, February 16, 2009

My Life by the Numbers

These are the things I think about while I'm doing laundry.
  • 25 my age on my next birthday
  • 980 number of days I have lived in New York (about 23,520 hours, 32 months and 2.75 years)
  • 3 the number of weeks that I spent sleeping on the Oeffinger’s couch before subletting an apartment
  • 83 the street of my first New York apartment
  • 900 the square footage of said apartment
  • 2 the number of jobs I’ve had in New York
  • 4 the number of New York museums I've visited
  • 25 number of minutes in my commute to work every morning
  • 62.5 the number of miles my Nike+ says I’ve run in the 7 weeks since Christmas (my goal is 96 miles by the end of March!)
  • 11 the number of Season 3 30 Rock episodes on my DVR waiting to be watched
  • 43 pairs of shoes in my closet
  • 19 pairs of shoes under my bed
  • 6 pillows on my fluffy bed
  • 10 the number of times I have left Manhattan to visit another borough
  • 20 the number of minutes I spend snoozing after my alarm goes off every morning
  • 72 the number of stairs I walk up to get to my 4th floor apartment
  • 11 the number of phone numbers in my iPhone Favorites call list
  • 15 the number of Broadway Playbills that I’ve collected from shows – not including multiple trips for Rent, Hairspray and Spring Awakening
  • $8 (or 32 quarters) what it costs to do my laundry at the laundry mat across 2nd Avenue
  • 14 the number of pashminas hanging on my longhorn hook
  • 33 weeks that I've managed to keep my desk plant alive
  • 18 months of NetFlix I've had for free courtesy of my sales rep
  • 12 visits Texas
  • 1 the number of times I’ve paid to get my hair cut & highlighted in NYC
  • 5 number of blocks from my apartment to Central Park

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Running out of Reasons

Mom: I was reading Jamie and Angie's blogs today
LJ: Oh yeah? Did you see Angie's Best Job in the World Video? It's really good!
Yes, she did a great job. So, I was wondering why you don't have a blog...
Hah, I don't know! I just comment on Jamie and Angie's posts and figure my life is covered.
Well I think maybe you should start one.

I have considered blogging before, but never seriously. I mean really, what would I say? Who would read it? What if it was terrible? Who would care? If you only knew how long I spend writing and re-writing emails (yes, I'm quite the perfectionist), you would understand that keeping up with a blog would be a serious time commitment. Besides it's true, between Angie and Jamie's blogs, my New York adventures are pretty much covered!

But when I think about it, most of my friends have blogs now. They are all different of course. Some rely on photos to tell their stories, some focus on their passions - Missions, TV Shows, Food, Music - and others blog their adventures, random thoughts and general daily musings. I guess you can say that they have all influenced me to enter the blogosphere. Well, them and my Mom's comment last week.

So here I am. Trying to navigate the Blogger interface, attempting to make it look pretty, experimenting with dozens of different titles until I find one I like...

Actually, let's discuss this - the blog title. There's just something stressful about finding the words for the top of the page that best represent me. Because they aren't just any words. They are words that will become a part of my identity, express my personality, define the purpose of my blog. Should it be a simple or deep? A phrase? A quote? Song lyrics? Should it rhyme? Ugh, what if it sounds really lame? Stress!

If you really knew how much time I spent coming up with my blog name, you would undoubtedly laugh at me. Apparently titling my blog is another reason I've avoided this for so long.

And now? Now, I have officially run out of reasons not to blog.