Buy the expensive whiskey

Time will pass. The things we worry about will pass. Some of the things we want desperately will come our way, and some will not. Things we aren’t worrying about will blindside us and leave us temporarily devastated, this too will pass. The good is never as good as we imagine, and the bad is never as bad as we fear. Our health may hold, it may not. We may have 50 years ahead of us, we may cease to exist before the day closes.

We have to make decisions we can live with, whether others understand them or not. Let one of these decisions be to buy the good whiskey. Trust me, there is a difference. When your days are gone, know you’ve helped others…but also done a few things for yourself.

Triathlon update

Sometime in early January I decided, for the third time in my life, that I was going to train for an Olympic distance triathlon. This is a weird decision to make once, let alone three times, since I despise swimming and cycling.

Now, 3.5 months later, I’m looking at options to train for a full Ironman Triathlon between now and June 3, 2020 when my 50th birthday hits me like a brick.

I still truly suck at swimming, but I hate it less. I can’t say I enjoy cycling alone, but it’s wonderful with the right company.

One month from now I’ll update on how that first Olympic distance attempt has gone. Or, if I fail, I’ll delete this post and cover my tracks and never mention it again.

Intercoiffure America Canada, making the business of beauty beautiful

Somehow, I managed to work my way into a niche within the beauty industry. It wasn’t on purpose, it wasn’t by design, I don’t even really know how it happened.

Regardless of how I got here, this marks the sixth year I’ve been lucky enough to work with Intercoiffure America Canada.

Representing the top beauty professionals in the United States and Canada is as fun as it is intimidating, and I have more memories tied to this group than any other work I’ve done in my career.

Moving forward into year seven, here’s the new web site for this amazing group of stylists, platform artists, salon owners, and damn good people.

Intercoiffure America Canada.

Beauty School Bobbi

Fun project alert.

I never got into podcasting. Not because I didn’t want to, but because I simply never had the time. Finding the right topics, research, creating content, editing, repeat.

Working with a podcaster, however, has turned out to be a lot of fun. Beauty School Bobbi is a friend of mine that has taken her passion and turned it into a podcast directed towards beauty school students and beauty professionals in the first five years of their career. The topics are interesting and the guests are actually really interesting, regardless of your interest in the beauty industry. The podcasts almost turn into life-coaching moments with incredible insight into performing better, regardless of what you do.

Check out the podcast here. Beauty School Bobbi.

Working to change the way things work

Historically, I don’t often write about work. I’m going to change that, and post a weekly update about something related to the world of marketing, public relations, social media, and consulting.

Currently, I’m working with a software firm located in Australia that truly has technology that will change the way a lot of our world works…assuming I do my job, they do theirs, and we can convince people to embrace these new tools. The overall package is called Valise Suite, with bits and pieces of the suite that you can tailor to your own business needs.

The first product is a little artificial intelligence program, YourXpert, with a bit more than 12 million lines of code and counting. It can do things that unnerve me, which is good, this gives me something to work with.

More soon, but I wanted to sort of mention this project early, so that I could reflect back over time and update along the way. Magazine articles and multiple interviews are already lined up for this project – the first stop is an interview for the CEO with Forbes.

Living: Dead or Alive

Life means something different at 48 years of age than it did just a few short years ago. I’ve started to ponder more frequently what the next years will look like.

I’ve developed a sense of safety and routine in my little box. I do things that many would be terrified to do, but they no longer terrify me. I see things that once looked boring to me, they no longer look boring.

I’m pretty sure I can find a way to enjoy the rest of my years in this box if I need to….but if I do, am I alive or am I dead? Or am I neither?


Learn to run in the rain

Bad day? Bad week? Can’t get a break in the clouds?

Life is not about the perfect days, it’s about learning to run in the rain. I know this isn’t a new quote or saying, but it deserves consideration.

If we spend our lives only appreciating the perfect moments, only making decisions when the outcome is certain, only doing things we already know we enjoy…we miss what life is about.

Don’t hide from the rain, step out into it and let it wash away the mediocrity the world forces upon you.

Unsolicited dick pic

Social media may be the most important tool to come along within my lifetime. It has completely changed how we communicate.

There was once a time that we actually had to pass notes to girls asking them to look at our dick.

Then, life changed and we could just text them and ask if they’d please take a look. This was nice, but soon after this occurrence, we could suddenly use our phone to simply take a picture and send it! No more long delays of having to find out if anyone truly wanted to see our dicks!

Now, we can send dick pics that disappear after a few seconds, which is probably a more realistic way to look at erections anyway. Perfect.

The content of the current news cycles and the information that most people share in today’s world is honestly less value than a disappearing dick pic. The misinformed masses are now able to share and promote stories that have zero validity and completely sway everything from elections, to marketing campaigns, to the hiring of a college football coach. Fact checking isn’t needed. If an untrue headline catches someone’s interest, they share with 100s of other misinformed loons who then share it with 1000s more misinformed loons.

Please, from now on, STOP SHARING UNSUBSTANTIATED NEWS STORIES. Do us all a favor, if you don’t have time to look into the topic you’re pretending you care about, do us all a favor and just send a dick pic.

Don Draper, Tony Stark, and the pussification of America

With every refresh of the news cycle, more allegations of sexual misconduct are announced, more careers are derailed, and more people suddenly are thrust into the spotlight.

First, before things come completely unhinged, I need to go on the record and say that I am sympathetic with anyone that has truly been hurt by any other person. Any form of true abuse should not be tolerated.

That said, we need to make sure we are truly looking at whether or not people are truly hurt, truly damaged, truly pushed into situations that they were not capable of handling without media attention. We need to make sure we aren’t simply catering to a lot of people that would rather complain or bitch or moan rather than fight to survive.

There’s a reason that Don Draper and Tony Stark are popular fictional characters. There’s a reason we have opposable thumbs. The strong, powerful, smart, and attractive are driving forces in society. They’re the people that men and women look up to (even if they hate them at the same time).

People that are driven are going to take chances and try to get what they want. People that are successful are accustomed to getting what they want and they’re going to keep pushing for more. If you don’t want to give in, don’t. Become more powerful than them. Grow an extra thumb and prove yourself to be the next step in evolution. Be the person that people aspire to, not the one that got upset because someone hit on you when they were drunk.

Acting like our current lineup of actors and politicians were the first womanizers, predators, and players is asinine. Social media, mobile phones, and digital cameras make it easier to get caught and easier to spread the word, but this isn’t new. Look at famous men throughout history, if you think they didn’t bend a subordinate over the woodpile you’re fooling yourself.

As a male, I have to say that women have called out things to me that I’d never have dreamed of saying to them. Men and women have instincts that sometimes come out. I’ve never been offended at the random foot in my crotch at a table or hand brushing across my crotch. One of my bosses, female, put me in a very bad position once and I turned her down….and lost my job. I stood up at the time, didn’t wait 25 years, and moved on.

There are a lot of genuinely bad stories in the news. There are a lot of bad rumors in the news. There are also a lot of things out there that simply need to be left out of the spotlight.

Again, for anyone genuinely hurt, I’m very sorry. For those of you that are giving far too much credence to the current hot-button of inappropriate conduct, go fuck yourselves (but make sure you get your own permission first).

Showing up is NOT half the battle

When I hear someone say that showing up is half the battle, it makes me ill. I don’t just cringe, it makes me physically react…it’s a verbal weenie shrinker. Showing up is NOT half the battle. Showing up is a minimum requirement of existence, we’re already here, we’ve already shown up.

Once we show up, that’s when the battle begins. Whether we’re discussing relationships, work, sports, Candy Crush, or masturbation…you have to put work into getting the results you want. Simply showing up and staring at your partner, your office, your running shoes, your iPad, or your privates will not spur them into giving you the reaction you’re looking for.

Once you show up, see what needs to be done, and do it better than anyone else could. Work your ass off to get what you want and to be missed if you’re gone. Push yourself to be the person you can be, not the person you are.

And if you ever hear anyone say, ‘Showing up is half the battle,’ – smack them in the face or kick them in the crotch, and tell them they couldn’t be more wrong.

Work your ass off while nobody’s watching

I’m constantly told by others how easy my line of work is for me. Clients and colleagues reference the fact that this all comes so easily to me, that I just fly by the seat of my pants and inherently know what to say and do. The kind ones refer to me as an idiot savant, the descriptions go downhill from there. I have several clients that are the same way, during a meeting they appear to there for fun instead of work…yet they know the answer to every question and have researched every angle of the discussion at-hand.

What people don’t see is the fact that behind every hour of appearing to have superhuman talents and knowledge, there are countless hours of work and dedication. I’m not more talented or smarter than anyone else in the room, and I’m certainly not a savant (the ‘idiot’ moniker, however, is likely applicable).

Making it all look easy is simply the hardest thing you’ll ever do. But it’s worth it. It’s just like time at the gym. Those that are able to lift more and run faster than you make it look easy, but that’s because they’ve put hours of effort into it. So, work your ass off on when nobody’s looking, and let everyone think you’re naturally the best there’s ever been.

Be awesome

Whatever you do, be the fucking best there is.

There isn’t a job out there that this doesn’t apply to, nor one item that you’ll ever undertake in your personal life.

I somehow found myself in a pretty rundown hotel recently, as I had pulled over late at night and was simply too tired to go any further. I had simply decided to take whatever I could find at the nearest exit. Although I pride myself on being rather low-maintenance, I’ll admit I am a delicate flower when it comes to my hotel choices since I travel so frequently.

When I walked into the office, I could see how rundown the place was, the carpet was tattered and the entire facility looked as though it was far past its prime 30 years ago. There wasn’t any historic beauty here, just old rundown shabbiness.

The front desk person greeted me like I was his long-lost brother. He wasn’t overbearing, but made just enough small-talk during the check-in process to determine that I was completely exhausted. By the time check-in was completed, he’d found out that I needed food and offered to call in an order for delivery since there was no dining at the hotel, then he had someone from the maintenance team drag my baggage to the room for me (I don’t travel light). A few minutes after I was settled in the room and waiting for food, the front desk called to make sure that I had everything I needed and to remind me that they had ample toiletries they could run my way if I’d forgotten anything when I packed.

Under most circumstances I’d have hated my short stop for rest based on the rundown nature of the hotel, but that wasn’t the case in this instance. Thanks to one single person that was being the best front desk person he could possibly be, I would rank my stay with any of the high-end hotels I frequent.

Imagine how different the world would be if everyone went to work each day with the simple goal of kicking ass regardless of what they do. The best possible service at every restaurant, the best possible service each time you have to call for technical support, the best possible service from your consultants, etc. Everyone would suddenly be upwardly mobile, moving on to better jobs and careers as they show their true abilities.

What are you going to do today? Whatever it is, do it better than you’ve ever done it before.