Shameless Friendly Plug!

Last night we had some party people over, drank lots of beer & ate a ton o' pizza. Finally got to meet R's work friend Nick and his wife Carrie (sp?). Awesome people. Nick listened to me spout off about improv & comedy stuff for like twenty minutes while our wives bonded. (Given the way they giggled, they either shared wedding stories or compared notes on sexual habits as married women. No sign as to whether or not those compared notes were rave reviews or "constructive feedback.")

And Carrie is the life of any party; girl sure knows how to have fun, esp. when fun includes making people do shots in my kitchen. So in order to balance out the favor they did us – preventing us from having a semi-boring Friday night, here's a shameless plug for Nick's website:

Its kinda like a Yelp but for all types of stuff. I wrote a review for a movie (The Hulk I think?) and then got waylayed into other projects, but there's value in collecting crowdsourced reviews and making them searchable. They've got a healthy amt. of content at this point, so check 'em out and make sure you sign up & write at least one review. Do it.

Why are you still reading me? Write a review, will ya?!?

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Testing my ability to blog… FROM MY NEW BLACKBERRY!!!
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Venice Beach? Picture Me Rollin’

Best $10 Sunglasses Ever.

How Would Life Be Different as an IT Analyst?

1. I’d never get to have sex. In real life. With another human being. With another FEMALE human being. With another female human being that still has all her teeth. With another female human being that still has all her teeth and doesn’t have a menu of ‘services’ tattooed on the small of her back.
2. Instead of blogging, I’d play Second Life and World of Warcraft, and instead of referring to them by name, I refer to them as 2L and WOW in order to make myself feel like I’m part of an exclusive club.
3. Instead of improv, I’d make up words with non-sensical alphabets, like n00b, pwnd, w00t, and 01111001 01101111 01110101 00100111 01110010 01100101 00100000 01100100 01110101 01101101 01100010.
4. Instead of running, I’d… um… maybe think about trying to join the kickball league but get nervous about spending time around the girl from sales who’s also on the team and has nice knockers.
5. Instead of calling them breasts, I use all other words possible: boobs, tits, jugs, fun bags, chest udders, hooters, sweatermelons, chesticles, gazongas, stare bait, lung bongos, the aformentioned “knockers”, or chest hams. I’d also think these were hilarious. … Ahem.
6. Instead of occasionally wearing one of several humorous t-shirts for a day/night out in the city, I would stay at home and catalog all of the video-game t-shirts I collected (& still haven’t opened) from the free giveaways at the back of Nintendo Power magazines. My favorite would be the Contra t-shirt, but I wouldn’t have to explain why to my friends.
7. Instead of working in a cubicle in an office building at least 10 miles from where I live, I would live AND work in a cubicle I built myself in my cramped apartment building and know all of the free wi-fi spots within 10 miles.
8. Instead of talking thoughtfully about a movie with my friends after seeing it, I would text my fellow nerds during the movie. Each scene I particularly enjoyed would get the same rave: “Best. Plane fight. Ever.” or “Best. Nude male sex scene not starring Heath Ledger. Ever.”
9. Did I mention I’d never have sex?
10. Instead of writing Movie Quote of the Week emails that everyone enjoys reading & that have the potential to be sponsored (!), I would write very long letters to my favorite sci-fi androids (such as C3PO and Data and Vicki from Small Wonder), put them all together in an anthology, post it on Wikipedia as the entry for “robot love”, and then get pissed off at everyone else who tries to edit the facts that I know are accurate and this guy’s just being a d!ck.


Not Just a Hat Rack, My Friend

Last weekend, on the flights home from Choi’s stateside wedding reception, I had the surprisingly pleasant experience of watching ‘PS I Love You’. (SHUT UP. I have already heard every possible joke or insult about being a dude who sometimes enjoys chick flicks, so save your breath – it won’t change anything.)

… puts down his hackles …

Anyway, Hilary Swank loses her husband & basically starts her life all over based on letters her hubby left for her before the tumor got the better of him. One of the new parts of her life is actually being the creative, productive artist she wanted to be, working for herself as a shoe designer. Of course it goes perfectly well and she doesn’t have any problems at all getting the business off the ground… that’s not what the movie’s about, so they sheen over it. But it did get to me… you sometimes need a kick in the pants, mortal or not, to get your sh!t started. Between that part of the movie and our recently accumulated collection of entrepreneurial magazines, my sh!t got started.

I made a list of all the possible sources of revenue that I think would be a) fun to do; b) less than a full time job taken one at a time, but certainly a full day’s work if all of them ran simultaneously; and c) NOT require me to work in a cubicle & use words like ‘go-getter’, ‘the net is…’, and ‘let’s not get lost in the sausage-making.’

Taken piecemeal, NONE of these are fully able to support our current lifestyle (at least I’m not letting myself think that they could). However, if I get a few of them moving, if I stop spending my spare time on ‘non-contributing’ activities (such as making lists of things I’d rather be doing & then not doing them), one or two or three of them COULD actually become substantial, and the sum of their substances COULD, in a few years time, get me close to the bi-weekly payments I currently receive for small parts of my soul.

One of these ideas is blogging (surprise!). You probably ignored them on purpose, but hopefully there were one or two text ads from Google on the banner above my Twitterbox. I am aware that ad revenue requires eyes on pages and, more importantly, clicks to other pages where consumerism takes over… so I figure I need to:
1. Blog more often
2. Blog in a voice that’s my own – not that I use anybody else’s, but I mean a voice that’s distinct… signal, not noise
3a. Consider ‘re-branding’ the blog, or basically just change the name to reiterate the voice I’m using; and
3b. Promote the ever-loving crap out of it without pissing people off. I already link to it at the bottom of every Gmail I send, and it’s often in my GChat status window, and I do update it on Facebook using MirrorBlog… but those are all fairly passive. Once I’m satisfied with my frequency & the voice I’ve created, I’ll probably need to be A-G-G-R-E-S-S-I-V-E (whoo!).

The rest of the list is below, with a pittance of exposition on each one.

Idea 2: Create my own Improv group/troupe/trifecta. I seriously love doing what I’ve been doing on the improv tip. I think I’m actually fairly decent at it. I know at least 3 other people who are fairly decent at it but are better at things that I suck at and vice-versa. So I think I’ve got the raw materials, just need to put the product together and get out there with it. Worry about finding a stage & all the business pieces after we test the product out a bit (market research, folks… who says Penn State only teaches you to drink?)

Idea 3: Launch my own t-shirt shoppe, a la Busted Tees. This one’s easy & would take next to no time but might actually produce revenue. If you’ve known me at any point since I got to college, you know I enjoy me some funny t-shirts. Well, I’ve got at least a dozen ideas for new ones that I’ve never seen online or on you, and all it takes is putting some graphics & text together and either a) send it to an online insta-fab shoppe to have them made & sent to me to sell myself; or b) sell the designs/ideas to an already existing shoppe, i.e. Busted Tees or Snorg Tees or whatever. YES, this idea is simple and easy. NO, not everyone can do it, because not everyone is funny, and those that aren’t funny are sometimes also not clever, and those that are neither funny nor clever are also sometimes too lazy to do sh!t like this. You need to be funny, clever, or at least not lazy to make your own t-shirt shoppe. (BTW, I’m bringing back the unnecessary e’s at the ends of words. Kickin’ it Olde Schoole.)

Idea 4: Start a corporate presentation consulting firm. Hear me out. This is not me continuing to sell my soul behind a cubicle, but it IS more focused on dolla-dolla bills y’all. This is a hybrid idea of what I currently do and Idea 2 – basically it would be me teaching other people presentation skills. I went through 4 days of this training with my first company fresh out of school, and I know they a) make mucho dolares, and b) have almost NO capital invested in their business. While I don’t know as many fellow corporate slaves that would be interested in doing Improv-ish type stuff every day, I do know that, at the very least, I rock the presentation scene like whoa. I’ve gotten VERY comfortable in front of crowds, and am most fluid when I’m just talking about general crap… that is, when I’m not trying to justify my decisions or make a numbers-based recommendation. And maybe you’ve never seen a corporate presentation consultant speak, but these guys NEVER have to get into decisions or numbers unless they’re selling their own services. (At this I might suck… but probably not, because I have a 90% chance of never seeing the rejecting people ever again, so what’ve I got to lose? Plus, if I brought R in on this, she could sell girl-on-girl porn to a British nun, so I’d be solid.) AND, even better than getting to ‘sort of’ act or improv all day, I’d have more time & freedom to do the recreational acting or writing stuff after work. All good things, friends, all good things.

So there’s a lot more, but this 20 minute post has turned into about 70 already, and lunch is ready. Guess you’ll just have to come back for more at a later date. Oh, if you happen to be interested in joining me on any of the above forays, you know where my Inbox is.

Happy Saturday, people.