The Cover Letter I Actually Want to Submit

Hello Potential Employer,

 

At this point and time in my life, please understand that I am feeling exhausted, beaten down, and slightly depressed at the fact I must go through this job seeking process once again. Though I am a positive and upbeat person in my everyday life, this is a touchy subject for me. More than anything do I want to be employed at a place that gives me the opportunity to do what I am best at, pays and treats me wells, and guarantees me long term employment. However, this is so hard to find!

 

As you pick up my resume and look at it, you will notice that in fact I HAVE NOT worked at an advertising agency like Wieden + Kennedy. I did not spend a couple years there and then bounce around to various other creative agencies. No, I do not have the “agency experience” directly. However, isn’t that a good thing?!

 

I am someone who has gone against the grain. I have found opportunities to communicate and influence communities without having to use a big company name for any sort of validation. I have built all of this ON MY OWN! Does this not prove how hard of a worker I am? Does this not prove that even though I’ve been rejected and turned down so many times, that none of that will stop me!? Doesn’t this also prove that if you gave me a chance and invested that opportunity into me, I would stay and constantly work hard for you?

 

It’s just amazing to me that my friends and coworkers all see how much of a hardworking and successful person I strive to be, yet I never seem to be good enough for a job. I need to have these skills, know more about this and that, I should of worked here and there… the list never ends! How come you can’t recognize the potential from my past experience and offer someone like me a shot? You’re aware that many talented and brilliant minds do not (and may never) work at a well-known advertising agency. Just because someone has worked somewhere “big” before does not at all mean they have half the passion that someone like me does.

 

Just give me a chance. Meet me in person! I love talking to and meeting new people. But please ask me good questions too. We all know that it is impossible to get along with everyone, but when in a work environment I know how to be polite and productive. Obviously I need money, but I want to work here to satisfy a piece of soul that is tossing and turning. And of course I’m not perfect, I have flaws, but I am open to feedback so that I can learn and change for the better!

 

I feel I could go on and on, but I sadly must return to applying to jobs that I will be instantly rejected from. If you feel up for doing something different, please let me know! I am more than ready to go!

 

Thank you,

Lauren

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Stories with friends: the Nic and Lauren version.

As mentioned in a previous post, my friends and I enjoy writing stories together. My dear friend Nic Brown and I decided to write one together at our typical spot, Scandals. Together, and with the influence of a few greyhounds, we created a very interesting story (with illustrations). Though it’s apparent when we may have had too many and the story doesn’t make much sense towards the end, it was still a lot of fun to make. Enjoy.

5

“Hail Satan!” She yelled.

Helen slammed the last of her flask down as she picked up her bible. With trembling fingers, Helen thumbled through the pages until she came to Leviticus.

“Fuck yer all! Satan never dun meh wrong! Cletus?! Where you at? Mama’s hungry.”

Sadly for Helen, “Mama” was gon’ be hungry for a long time. Unbeknownst to Helen and her southern drawl, Cletus was lying dead in the basement. She also failed to remember the events of the night before.

6

After watching her nightly episode of Wheel of Fortune, Helen entered what she referred to as her “umbrella stage.”

Helen. Helen. Helen. She repeated the name to herself to try and find some sort of familiarity in her surroundings. She set her bible down on the arm of her La-Z-Boy and looked out the window. She felt herself get dizzy as the remaining parts of the McDonald’s chicken nuggets fell, cascading from the velvet to the cold, hardwood floor.

6

–FLASHBACK– Knoxville, TN. 1864

Loretta licked her lips. Timothy had just made her the finest potato dinner a girl could ever hope to have.

7

“Who the fuck are you?” Helen screamed as she swung violently with her eyes closed. Loretta isn’t real. Neither is Timothy. Yet, she still thought of them as if they were family. They were the only family Helen had. She had lost her true, blood family in a terrible fishing accident in 1923. It wasn’t Helen’s fault at all, but she always blamed herself for letting the fishing line go. “Loretta,” “Timothy,” and the “umbrella stage” (the name of the fishing vessel that claimed the lives of her family) were the only comfort (albeit imaginary) that she had left. Except for Cletus.

 8

What a fucking mistake. Cletus. He was never supposed to happen. Who would of thought that after a man got hit in the head with a 2×4, that he would of fucked that vilal cow. But none of that mattered now. Cletus was dead in the basement, and Helen was non the wiser. She was still passed out in a religion-and-Wheel-of-Fortune-and-self-denial coma when she woke to a knock on the door.

9

Ring. Ring. Ring. A small, sweet little girl rang the bell. Every fifteenth of a second, she knocked. Her name was Panther, or that’s what her foster parents called her. She was 8 years old and always sported a charming (if slightly out-of-fashion) gold-sequined hair bow. She was in the neighborhood going door-to-door to raise money for her foster mother Memphis’ Memphis Getaway Extravaganza.

4

All the mother’s were known for taking their tops off during the festivities. And they sat in a circle ’round the fire, chanting “PENIS PENIS PENIS, BUTT BUTT BUTT! Hail Satan.”

3

Following that memories flash back, Helen vaguely remembered the death of Cletus. All he wanted was to sleep. As the persistant pound of the rocking La-Z-Boy pounded the floor, Cletus laid in bed thinking of a better future. Though at the age of 31, unemployed, uninterested, Cletus still held hope for a better tomorrow.

…TO BE CONTINUED

2

Stories with friends: the Stephen, Xel, and Lauren version.

Recently, some friends and I decided it would be fun to write stories together. This genius idea overcame us during a drunken stupor at one of our new favorite hang outs, the Nest. As we slammed back PBR after PBR, we created one of the greatest short stories ever told. The rules were that one person wrote one sentence/statement at a time. You were only allowed to read the last post, not the entire story, to help influence your turn. The authors for this story are none other than the amazing Xel Moore, the charming Stephen Tobias, some random girl and myself.

1 

Qnce apon a time… [sidenote: Xel decided to really switch things up with “qnce” instead of “once.”] a beast named sally grew a garden of tomatoes…

to her surprise not only tomatoes grew… but something else…

but a massive dick hit me in the face!

I didn’t know Lauren had a dick!?

But she did! It got me, I couldn’t ignore it once it had entered me…

and then I was happy.

But that was short-lived.

And when she woke up, she couldn’t remember what happened. She cried, and then she ate a sandwich. After the sandwich she had to poo. When she pooed, she cried more. Then she realized lesbians always carried baggage… THE END!

2

A moment of fear and disappointment.

“I can’t make it!” A little boy screamed this as he thrashed through the water. He continued to fight the pool as it swallowed him into its chlorine-filled stomach. From across the pool deck the boy’s teacher saw his struggle. The teacher grabbed an innertube as he ran towards the boy. He then jumped into the pool and carried the boy back to the safety of shallow waters. Though the event was horrible but took a turn into something positive, there was still something that bothered me. The worst thing about this situation was that I stood only four feet from the drowning boy; I was supposed to be the one saving him.

At that point in my life, I was a trained lifeguard for three years and I had saved other children younger than the drowning boy before. But this time I was oblivious to a situation that I should have been more than prepared for. I neither heard the boy screaming, nor saw his struggle. I cannot even blame this on being absentminded or preoccupied. I was standing in front of the boy, ironically holding the “LIFEGUARD” life preserver and readying myself for any emergency.

I was in a position where I was striving for the image of perfection. I was just as terrified as the boy. I suffocated in fear of having more than 50 young lives depend on me for their safety. Because of the pressure being placed upon me, I drowned with the struggling boy.

After that situation, I learned my lesson and no longer will I allow my fears to hold me back from what I can do. When an opportunity is present, I just let go and jump in after it.

The end of a battle.

Well, something monumental took place today: I finished college.

This, this educational experience has a been a dark, five year war. I have finally reached the end of a tunnel that I never thought I would ever see. I am a college graduate.

This summer has been interesting to say the least. I felt that I was finally left alone in Eugene to finish school. My closest friends had either moved away or were busy building their new lives; I was just trying to catch up to them. I have hated, hated school. I saw this higher education to be a total roadblock as it was holding me back from doing what I wanted to do at that time. However, once I was finally left with just one class to take, and nothing else, I found myself doing something else that I thought would never happened: I WAS ENJOYING THE COURSE. And to make matters even stranger, IT WAS A SCIENCE CLASS. And you know what? I maintained an A through most of that class. I’ll be honest, I didn’t give a fuck about the final. I was (and still am) so proud of myself for doing as good as I did in that class.

I know that I bitch a lot and am always complaining; but I really don’t think people understand how difficult this past year has been for me. I truly feel that I lost everything I cared about and had to completely start over. I had to watch as things I poured my heart and soul into were just handed over to other people who did absolutely nothing to deserve them. As I continued to take mental punch after mental punch, I had to be witness to the unfair and vicious cycle of life. Here I am, someone who is fighting so hard to prove my worth while some stupid bitch kissed enough ass to steal my opportunities away. This is society, this is the cycle. Deep down, people don’t care how hard you work or what your accomplishments are. If you do not worship the ground others walk on, you are merely rubbish. Well, I’m sorry. I feel that you need to earn respect and should do your own work to reach the top. However, as I say this, all I wanted this past year was someone to simply give me something and help me out. I suppose I should be thankful for everything that has happened, my eyes are open in a way they never were before. But at the same time, I feel so beaten down. I know I will get back to how I once was, but it is a challenge.

So now I’m applying for jobs. I find myself getting annoyed with the companies that ask what my GPA is. You know what I want to put in that box? FUCK YOU. I mean give me a break. Look at my resume. Look at the activities I took part in. Look at the friendships and experiences I made. Look at all the crap I just went through in just one year alone. Yeah, my GPA can suffer. I’m sorry, but this was the only time in my life that I would be able to do what I’ve done with the people who were there. I found that creating these relationships had much more importance than a class. My friendships will last long past my college career and will benefit me in that fashion. How can some number between 1 and 4 put an accurate value on the type of employee that I can be? It can’t.

A rubber ball always bounces back, it just has to reach the bottom first.

With that in mind, I’ve finally reach the ground. My legs are bent and the pressure is building. It’s only a matter of time before I release and launch back into the air. There is no where to go from here but up.

Talk shows are tools for generating conversation about products and brands, not much else.

We live in a world where more people care about the daily activities of another rather than learning about something of intellect. Turn on the television, flip through the channels and a moderately attractive person is covered in make up on the screen telling you about how so-and-so’s new body is perfect for summer. It’s an ongoing joke that everything Oprah touches turns to gold. Internet Blogger Perez Hilton makes a sizeable living off of providing thousands of readers with daily gossip and content related to the lifestyles of celebrities. Kim Kardashian is considered a multi-million dollar franchise, as her personal brand alone generates outstanding consumer sales. Simply because over other pressing matters in the media, people care more about what others are doing with their lives; eating, drinking, wearing, absolutely everything. Every product that Kim Kardashian is seen with thrives in sales simply because of her consumer following. As a public figure, she is a living mannequin for nearly every single industry in the international market place. Others are catching on to this and are now creating more senseless programming such as The World According to Paris. Even as public figures utilize services such as rehab, psychiatrists, and massage therapists, these professions are receiving media exposure so that such services will of interest to more consumers. Without a living and breathing face, products, brands, and services would have difficultly being integrated into society.

The importance of a talk show in today’s modern society is not to generate original dialogue; it is not to provide an outlet for the American public to relate to, but rather to build new consumer and behavioral habits off of a given brand. I know that others may be quick to question this idea I am bringing to the table, but truly think about it. Celebrities are nothing but Barbie dolls. They are faces behind societal movements. They are tools into drawing the public into the advertising industries plans of action. The Morning Show, The View, and Anderson Cooper are just examples of shows that use dialogue and conversation to bring awareness to political activism which inevitably brings attention to brands and products. Sponsors use strategic product placement and request for certain conversation topics to be mentioned on air as a means of generating discussion about a particular brand or product. This same tactic is used with talk radio, as hosts and callers “discretely” do plugs for companies that are funding airtime. By mentioning a security system (or something else) in the middle of a heated discussion, listeners are thrown off from the normal programming and exposed to a conversation about a product.

I noticed this during an event that took place on campus that I attended to conduct research for a financial literacy project I was working on at that time. From my understanding, in order to best approach how to reach a key public it is important to look at its consumer habits and interests. These reflect the population’s mindset in regards to monetary priority and reasons to consider new purchases. A key component in approaching this is by taking into consideration local, national and international public figures. Public figures are used to connect to different populations based off ethnicity, sexuality, sociological and economic status, religious background, and consumer interests. Based off of my research, I have found that people tend to follow by direction of individuals world of mouth, rather than an entire corporation or organization. These messages are being transmitted through social media and entertainment. Facebook and Twitter are leading word of mouth communicators in Eugene and throughout the nation.

Managing Director of Oglivy, APR, and PRSA fellow Mickey G. Nall confirms this idea to be a driving force behind much of the company’s success. During a keynote he presented on the University of Oregon campus on May 4th, Nall stated that 80% of Americans make consumer based decisions from word of mouth discussions. Spokespeople are often needed for consumer generated content and events as these individuals gain the trust of the public in order to verify the validity of brands. Nall further discussed how consumer public relations drive brand-specific editorial coverage that focuses on the rational and emotional stories. This is why when creating a brand, it is important to make it relevant to the consumer. This means that the brand needs to link directly to the consumer’s life in order to link the brand to a specific platform. This is easily done through media and entertainment as celebrities are used to help familiarize a brand with a public. By doing so, consumers are more likely to trust the brand and are thus more likely to incorporate it into their lives. It is also important to utilize celebrity figures as media generates more media content. Popular news programming is more likely to use content from already known events and persons, as it will bring in a large viewing audience. Differentiation is also a key component in generating a consumer following; if something is more likely to stand out amongst the rest, it inevitably will succeed.

A perfect example of a thriving public figure would be Talk Show Host Ellen DeGeneres. Nall even concluded his presentation by stating that DeGeneres is a great place to put a brand, as she draws in her audience using awareness, engagement, and action with consumer habits. This assumption was supported during a live taping of the Ellen Show Fiesta Bowl at the University of Oregon. The show was also a giveaway to bring attention to an upcoming college football game. I chose to attend this event because Ellen DeGeneres is a prominent figure daytime television, and according to CoolSpotters.com she is a representative for many popular consumer brands and entertainment, not only nationally but in the Eugene community as well. Some of the names she represents are Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, Michelle Obama, Mila Kunis, American Idol, WalMart, ABC, along with multiple other fashion lines and footwear. DeGeneres followers and supporters consumer traffic tends to be drawn towards brands she represents, which grows and varies based off of her business marketing decisions. This can be evaluated by the large attendance to multiple similar events she has hosted at the University of Oregon.

According to QuantCast, her website brings in traffic mostly from Caucasian females 18-50+ years old with no college background and have low incomes. I had observed that many who fit that demographic were in attendance at the event, along with young mothers, 18-25-year-old students, families, minorities, individuals with Christian religious backgrounds, and young engaged women. The event also brought in a large homosexuality supporting community as well, with over 300 people in attendance. Not to mention, the entire crowd came to the location based off of messages posted on Twitter for a college sporting event and Samsung giveaway. Because of DeGeneres, the Eugene public welcomed Samsung and college football into their lives. Because of a talk show host, brands were able to prosper to a vital key public in able to generate consumer sales.

As previously mentioned, this exact same tactic and approach to product branding is used in talk radio as well. Talk radio show hosts such as Glenn Beck and Lars Larson use product plugs constantly as a form of content during their shows. The side conversations they have with others in the station and callers conducts the same form of awareness as DeGeneres does during her show.

In today’s day and age in order for advertising to be successful, it must be orchestrated in a manner that is different from how it has been in the past. Consumers do not want to listen or watch media directly from a particular brand telling them to buy its product. The general public relies on recommendations from trusted figures when making purchases. In order for these recommendations to be heard, a conversation must be generated to make product discussion appropriate. Talk shows and radio are aware of this and continue to implement product conversation into programming.

Think about it, you yourself are a walking mannequin for brands. Every single time you open up your laptop in a public place and browse the web, you are providing free advertising and awareness about the products you use to those around you. Every time you buy food or drinks from a particular place, you are showing others that you choose that product over others. And every single time you mention any celebrity, product, or television show you are generating conversation about brands. Conversation runs the world, and bank accounts. Constant dialogue is not only needed to keep people entertained, but also to keep the economy in normal function. Thinking about starting your own business or need help advertising a new product? Don’t worry so much about paying tons of money for traditional marketing, but rather get out on the streets and start talking to the people you want to reach.

Alien.

Do you ever have those moments where you just find yourself in a position and you have no idea how you got there? I’m not necessarily meaning as if you all of a sudden ended up in Hawaii and forgot your journey; or that you no longer have a friendship as someone just disappeared off the face of the earth. But rather that you have found your body in a position and you’re not sure as to why.

Well, that happened to me.

It was a Saturday evening and I had survived a week of emotional abuse from the earth’s forces. My spirits are so low to the point that I feel as if I have no soul left in me. All that is remaining is this body, and yet I still find a will to continue to fight for what is right. As these thoughts are rushing through my empty skull, I look up and realize the position I was in. I was standing upright facing my bedroom mirror. My arms were wrapped around me so tightly and my head was buried into the comforting embrace.

I found that I was hugging myself.

With everything I’ve been enduring, all I need is affection. A simple hug from anyone just makes continuing on so much easier. But I suppose that sometimes we can’t count others to be there for that. Lately I feel as if I am fighting the world on my own. It is a sword fight, everyone has been taking turns in devouring my limbs. I refuse to wave some sort of white flag, but instead I keep my weapon raised high and swing back.

To be completely honest, at this point I feel as if I have no limbs left. I truly feel like I am just a bloody stump, holding a sword in my mouth. I refuse to give up until my head is cut off. Some how I find the ability to keep swinging, to keep fighting these villains off of me. But the blood loss is making me tired, I’m forgetting how to think clearly. I am unable to articulate how I feel, I am unable to fight at my best. I have been pushed into a dark corner and left for dead.

Everyone wants me to die, everyone wants me to fail. They forget that I am a wolf; my mother sure as hell didn’t give birth to a kitten. Though I may cry, though it may be hard to wake up every morning and continue, though the world is against me, I will not stop.

I will not allow someone like you to be the end of me. I will cut my own head off as I bow gracefully.
Keep playing that symphony, I’m not dead yet.