#nowplaying — Buckwheat Groats – Tom Hanks

THE GRAPHICS ARE SO SICK, MANNNNNN.

 

Advertisements

Birthday’s suck.

grumpy-cat-bday-princess

Recently, it was my birthday. Despite how attached I had become to being 25, I had to make the tragic leap towards getting THAT much closer to 30. In attempts to ring it in on a positive note, I tried to organize some events to ensure a good time. However, this year proved to be the same as every year in the assumption that having a birthday in general just really sucks.

  1. They are too stressful to plan. Whether it’s a dinner, a party, or a bar gathering, it still takes a significant amount of time to plan out. Invitations have to be made and sent out. If you forget to invite someone, you’re all of a sudden a terrible person who is malicious. Sometimes the reservation is wrong, dropped, or messed up severely in one way or another. People get lost and blow your phone up all evening trying to find you. Bottom line, you are not allowed to enjoy your evening; stress will always prevail!
  2. Someone else has to make it about them. Sometimes it’s a bar fight, or someone just got dumped  two minutes before your party, or maybe someone is angry at the world. Regardless, there is always that one person (sometimes more) who wants to redirect the attention on to them. Even if it’s negative, they thrive on being in the spotlight. Simply put, there are enough pitiful souls out there who are unable to grasp that everyone deserves a time to feel special and will find a way to ruin your birthday.
  3. You put too much importance on this day. Expectations have been set, and they were not met. This results in you getting understandably upset. But maybe the expectations were set to high. Maybe it’s best assume that NOTHING special will happen on that day. Yes, today is day that you were born. Clearly this is a significant moment in history, but just keep in mind that not everyone cares as much as you do.
  4. The people you truly want to spend it with can’t make it. It is heartbreaking when the ones you care about the most are not near you. Even if long distance family and friends send their thoughts to you, you can’t help but feel a little lonely.
  5. Something else “just came up.” It could be an act of terrorism, a natural disaster, or some other bitch throwing a party the same day as you. No matter what it is, when something else comes up it is beyond annoying. What’s wrong with everyone coming to your event and not having to choose between various functions? Don’t people know that this should be the only thing happening today? Jeeze.
  6. You’re becoming old as hell. You are now another year older, and it shows. Cheers to aging!

Even though some things mentioned above happened on my birthday, in all seriousness I still had a good one. To all the people who came out and celebrated with me, thank you. To all the people who went of their way to make sure I had a great time, thank you. To the people who gave me wonderful gifts, thank you so much. And to the people who tried to one up me on my birthday, thanks for being more of a diva. I appreciate all of it.  🙂

My failed business ventures and the lessons I’ve learned.

failed-biz

Success: it’s hard to come by. Being an accomplished entrepreneur is something that I have attempted to achieve for nearly my entire existence. The business ventures I looked into beginning have all varied, and failed. Though some of these have been more difficult to move past than others, I have still gained valuable life lessons. I wanted to share with you my failures, why they failed, and what I had gained in return.

1) “Poo Poo Coffee” — Age 4-5

As many children enjoy doing, I wanted to run my own beverage stand. Instead of going the typical lemonade and coffee route, I wanted to do something “revolutionary” and introduce the public to a new refreshing drink. Thus, came the birth of Poo Poo Coffee.

What it was.

Unlike most cold, carbonated sodas, Poo Poo coffee was created by shaking a Diet Coke can, dumping it into a cup in which it sat there for a few hours and occasionally adding some water or other beverages to it. The idea of this came to me from being a curious child who enjoy making disgusting concoctions. Before setting up a stand, I forced my family to try it. Though they apparently looked like they were going to throw up, all I was told was that it “tasted good.”

Why it failed.

Poo Poo Coffee tasted just like what it’s called, absolute shit. Not to mention, this was not an original product. I did not create the formula, but rather destroyed a perfectly fine tasting one instead. Also when the “business” was up and running, I failed to take into consideration how necessary things such as cups are. I had only one massive glass that I assumed was good for everyone to drink out of. Surprisingly, I only had one customer who I did pull from the streets. The (obviously) confused woman paid me 25 cents, drank from the cup, and went along her way. Needless to say, Poo Poo Coffee did not stay open after that.

What I learned.

Poo Poo Coffee is disgusting and no one wants it.

2) “Summer Camp for Kids Younger Than Me” — Age 8

During a summer spent at my father’s house, I came up with the idea to open a summer camp for kids who were younger than me. I honestly believed that I was not only responsible enough, but would have been able to provided all the needed services to keep a group of small children occupied and entertained.

What it was.

Honestly, I had just dragged a table out in the front yard, had a few pieces of paper, and my younger brother playing next to me to start the “registration process.” The idea was to have parents leave their children with me, I would read to the kids and provide other educational services, take the children on walks to the playground nearby, and share my toys with them. After informing my dad of what I wanted to do, he sarcastically approved of me making handwritten signs with his address and phone number to be posted all over the neighborhood (which I in fact did).

Why it failed.

I was an eight year old child, not an adult. I’m also fairly certain that it would have been very illegal for me to have even tried doing something like this. Not to mention, I definitely was not responsible enough to feed, care, or even try to “teach” children younger than me.

What I learned.

Children shouldn’t open up summer camps, but rather attend them instead. Handwritten signs lose almost all validity, and it’s probably not a good idea to put my dad’s address and phone number up everywhere.

3) “University of Oregon House Party” — Age 21-22

After “becoming of age,” I found myself more drawn to house music and wanted to go dancing constantly. I also discovered the amazing power of social media websites such as Twitter, and used it to talk to some of my favorite musicians. With the guidance of a mentor, I felt inspired to create a “house party” at the Univeristy of Oregon.

What it was.

The idea was to have a massive dance party in one of the biggest lawns on campus. With the help and support of some non-profits, internationally recognized performers were going to be flown out for a show that was going to be free for the general public. Some local performers were going to open, and booths were to be surrounding the venue for people to shop and eat at. It was going to happen at night on a weekend towards the very end of the year so that students would have been able to attend.

Why it failed.

I was able to get everything donated to me (including the performer’s time) except for the flights. Though the “house party” was aimed to raise awareness for a good cause along with offering entertainment, not one airline cared to donate to it. Thus, it never happened.

What I learned.

This was possibly the biggest heartbreak for me. More than anything, I wanted this event to happen. I had worked and stressed so long on it, only to have it all blow up in my face. I learned how to cope with not succeeding like this. This failure also showed me that I am capable to achieving a lot in a small amount of time, regardless if it was fully executed or not. I also learned that I have the ability to pitch and sell musicians to perspective clients without ever having them listen to one song.

4) “ENTILT” — Age 23-24

After graduating from college and being continously rejected from perspective jobs, I felt inclined to try and start my very own business. “ENTILT” was crafted from an original idea of mine, and expanded with the help of a couple partners.

What it was.

The idea behind “ENTILT,” was that it was an entertainment based company that offered various services, a publication, and a clothing line. With the help of my partners, we all were able to provide a multitude of options to help with branding and expanding the growth of potential clients. My partners and I decided it was best to list our previous clients to others to help develop a strong portfolio of our work.

Why it failed.

Though we met often to discuss what we wanted to do, I felt that I was the only one putting in work behind the company. I had created a decent website, was the only one to list my past clients, and created presentations to send to potential sponsors. My partners didn’t contribute as much simply because it was a bad time for them to do so. And I suppose it was for me as well. Not to mention, we had too many ideas and didn’t create a simple enough plan to initially start off with. It would have been wise for us to have focused on only one aspect of the company, rather than three at once.

What I learned.

Simplify. Simplify. Simplify. Do not take on too many obstacles at once. It’s also important to team up with people who are on the same page and who are ready to take on such a commitment. And I’m sure it wouldn’t have hurt to have worked somewhere else first in order to gain more experience before creating my own company.

I have faith that in some point and time in my life, I will be a successful entrepreneur. I believe that I will be able to finally craft up the perfect idea and be able to find the sponsors needed to make it flourish. Though it may take some time, I’m greatful for everything I have experienced professionally while growing up. Sometimes failure is necessary so that we can learn how to avoid it in the future. With that in mind, stay tuned as I’m sure I’ll have another “brillant” start-up idea here soon.

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