Archives for posts with tag: rant

My blog  just turned 40.

Like most that experience age 40, my blog is questioning itself in a weird mesh of reflection and bewilderment.

“How has there already been 40 posts?”

“Ugh, those paragraphs aren’t as tight as they used to be.” 

“Have I, after 40 posts, been successful?”

The interesting thing is that I feel a forty-year old would come to terms with the above comments much like I am coming to terms with this blog. A lot has happened over the time period of those 40 posts. The writing may not be as ambitious or written with the same intellectual vigor, but it has developed a tone; it now has structure. And yes it has been successful. It may not have won any awards, but it has carried a message, and has been received well by people.

So… am I supposed to buy a Corvette now or something?

Well, my blog is 40, not me, so I think the Corvette will have to wait. But in the meantime I do have some ideas for what I am going to do:

       1.     I am going to write to an audience, an audience that will listen.

When I started this blog it was intended to demonstrate that I was familiar to blogging, and meant to be a device to help me develop my writing skills. But I got tired of writing to some mythical job recruiter, and I decided to focus on writing to people who can identify with me. I will continue to offer this blog as a tool to recent graduates, employment seekers, and emerging communications professionals.

       2.     I am going to tell a story.

As I look back on some of my past writing, I realize that my best posts reveal something to the reader, and give them something that they can feel. A persuasive argument has no emotion, but an inspiring story can be quite persuasive and can hit people in the gut, where it really counts.

       3.     I am going to continue to strive for excellence.

While I feel I have made great strides in my writing, I want more. I want to engage a readership. I want to see a conversation take place via comments sparked by a thought-provoking post. I want people to tweet about my posts; to ignite conversations of their own. I want my pursuit of betterment to make other people better.

I do realize that those are some pretty lofty goals. But how else do you achieve greatness other than by setting the bar high?

I am fortunate though, to know what I need to do to achieve those goals: Listen. I will listen to criticism, I will listen to advice, and I will listen to my audience to make my online presence, worth something to others.

There is one more thing that I will try do start doing more frequently; leave with a call-to-action. So I say this to you: write. Write with everything you got. Put your head down on a piece of paper; punch out your thoughts on a keyboard. And if you are already doing that, great. Show me what you got. Share your writing with me, as I share with you. So that by the time you and I turn 40, our achievements will allow us to afford that Corvette.

I recently came across Starbuck’s new frappuccino ad campaign and cannot decide if they are brilliant or unethical:

This commercial seems very positive and simple, but there is a lot going on in 16 seconds. This commercial tries to hit the viewer every which way with visual, audio, and textual stimulus all of which have nothing to do with coffee in any way.

Now I understand the argument, Starbucks is not selling coffee; they aren’t even selling a brand, they are trying to sell a lifestyle. This issue I have concerns with is the very last line of the commercial: “Express your love.”

Starbucks is not selling coffee; they aren’t even selling a brand, they are trying to sell a lifestyle

This is a very powerful three word statement. In fact, I challenge anyone to think of a simpler, more emotionally stimulating message than “Express your love.” I could dissect why these words are powerful and emotional, but that is tangential to my point. My concern is what will happen when we no longer receptive to emotional stimuli. I have a growing concern that one day we will make ourselves immune to emotionally charged advertising. I am not concerned that consumers will stop buying, I am concerned that consumers will stop feeling.

I am not concerned that consumers will stop buying, I am concerned that consumers will stop feeling.

If our advertising makes people immune to emotional triggers, what is going to stop consumers from being immune to real emotional stimuli, not just the manufactured type?

On a note of full disclosure, I think the frappuccinos are delicious and am not offended by the ad campaign; just playing devils’ advocate so that people may think about it.

I will always be a longhorn and I do feel that my college experience has been worth while. But yes the above title is a bit callous. I am definitely a better, more informed, more intelligent, and more confident individual because of my experience.

But I still want more.

I feel the Universities should be a place for individuals to find passions; to find meanings. Yet I feel as I depart from here that all I really know how to do is fill out scan-trons.

My concern is really not about the experience I had, but more about the things that I missed. Where is the class about best-practices? Where was the freshman course on how to read and note-take? Where could I sign up for the course on how to argue?

Sure I gained familiarity with these concepts and at times were even exposed to their essence. But I feel like universities all across the country should do a little more soul searching. Why isn’t there a course on how to network? Why doesn’t the school provide tours and lectures on the most successful organizations in the world?

Some of these questions have probably been answered, and I am most certain that a few are still in the works. But I do not know how to answer why I am about to graduate and still feel disdain for coursework. Perhaps I am just tired; perhaps I am just lazy. But the bottom line is that I have a yearning to explore but feel held back by the rigidity of the formal class environment.

So I ask you, the nuanced scholar, to please change the learning landscape by proving traditional testing and courses are superfluous and not getting the most out of the generation y student.

%d bloggers like this: