Up until six months ago I lived in a box. Metaphysical to be sure, but a box nonetheless. My box kept my frame of reference focused on about a ten year span of my current life. 

Several months ago, I, like many of you, was pulled onto Facebook. While still not a huge fan, it has blown out  the back of that box and renewed amazing old friendships. While infrequent reunion trips back to college would loosen up those memories, they would safely return to their stored spots as soon as I pulled into my driveway. Facebook has a way of  merging bits of my past into my day-to-day present. A bit spooky at times, but cool…..

Then a few weeks ago, I bravely toddled over to Twitter to see what that was all about. Let me tell you, it can be a mind blowing experience. Within a few days my universe had expanded beyond my initial obsession following Demi/Ashton or Michelle O’s outfits into reaching out to new, wildly varying “friends”. Connections made with writers I had been following for years as well as fellow bloggers have seemed to open up an exciting future. 

So, between the Facebook past and my Twitter future I find myself sliding seemlessly from rewind to fast forward as easily as TiVo moves my favorite recorded shows. My new friend at Adventures In Ecommerce refers to this at the Fourth Dimension. Instead of feeling the weight of all of this, I feel weightless as if floating in space. A Twilight Zone that is truly freeing, as if that old box can’t contain me and my dreams as easily as it once could. To infinity and beyond……

Anyone else?

infinity2

Advertisements

No, no, it’s not that I think I am a great blogger. Nor a juicy target for advertisers or bigger gobbling blogs to devour me for millions. It all goes back to Cloris Leachman.

For those of you who have not been with me since the beginning, an “early” post discussed the age gap I was struck with when Cloris Leachman’s name came up (before her Dancing With the Network Stars entry.) Basically, the younger girls did not even know who Mary Tyler Moore’s neighbor was-if this applies to you, please stop reading!

Anywho, I cleverly went to Google Image and posted a favorite picture of Mary, Phyllis and Rhoda at the end of the blog. Click “Publish” and that was it. Two comments and several weeks later it was forgotten.

Then, as any new blogger does several times a day, I was on my WordPress Dashboard hoping to see a few more visitors to my site, when the strangest sight caught my eye. The graph showing daily visitors had jumped so high, it would have meant cardiac arrest on a heart attack victim’s monitor. 

What was up? Had I been discovered? I could see it was coming from Google Image and sometimes had Cloris’ name attached to the search. Did she die? (Sorry Cloris!) It took my brother-in-law over at Without A Net to tell me she has just published a tell-all book. 

And now my heroine Mary Tyler Moore is making the rounds spiking the searches even more. So, here I sit, the girl formerly happy with 50 visits a day. Last few days-1,479 and 902!

So, all you blog gurus, is there something I should do about this to take advantage? I am sure they are just clicking through my site, but it is an interesting bait that I had not thought about before. I guess I should specialize in Cloris gossip dirt and 1,479 might hang around with me for a while!

So whose photo should I insert next? How about The Material Girl?

madonna-picture-1

How strange is it that I couldn’t wait to come tell all of “you” how my “Put Up or Shut Up” went??? Is it wonderful, since my world is so blogishly expanded now or  am I a 12 year old girl alone bonding with her diary? Whatever…..

So do you want to know how it went down or what I wore? The PowerPoint went over very well-a bit unnerving as I was pitching to the heads of the agency about their own agency. But when you get where I/we are in this world, it takes a lot to really get ruffled.  I admit it was great to get this engine roaring again. A bit rejuvenating, I must say.

So, it’s a short-term consulting gig with great potential to be lengthened. Great people, great organization. I guess I work for myself!

And most importantly, here it is:

gold-cuff
 

chanelparisfashionweekreadywearw09aat6dzqc400l1
black-cap-sleeve1

Put Up or Shut Up!

March 25, 2009

Yes, Big Interview Day has come and gone. It went really well, I think…… Many pleasantries back and forth, shared sensibilities about the challenges at hand. Inserted all the alluring lingo I could manage into one hour-PowerPoint, Blogging, my Client Base, TweetDeck. Much nodding about collaborative opportunities that we must explore. 

And then, she says, “There is a ‘test’ to pass.” I am still nodding and smiling, but processing……. A test?!

Initial reactions in no particular order: Sure, I will do anything. What did she just say? What did I agree to do for free? I have to do what I said I can do? 

I think I was smiling while all of the above raced through my brain.

So, they request that I prepare a sample PowerPoint (one of the communication devices I “specialize”in) to pitch a new campaign they are working on. Just  an “opportunity to see if we are on the same page”. Really, it does make sense. An outside consultant would probably provide something similar to get the business and this “relationship” we are working on is consulting-like.  

And isn’t this what many of us have been waiting for-a stop to endless pre-screening applications and blab, blab, hypothetical blab during hard to earn interviews? Just a chance to do our stuff and make a difference. 

So off I go to focus and pound away. And probably spend a few too many minutes thinking about what I should wear…..

 

powerpoint

I admit it, I am one of those sentimental fools with letters to my kids in the safety deposit box (please remind my husband in case he forgets). They would be a bit mortifying if published, even in this anonymous blogging world, right?

However, there are a few things I could pass on not only to my daughters, but maybe to yours as well.  Since I am sure your daughters are as unlikely to listen to you as mine to me, perhaps we could trade and share our stories with them! 

So here goes: Girls…..

1)Fearlessly search for a sustainable passion. If you love it, you will keep yourself involved one way or another over your lifetime. Many of us were encouraged to follow the “serious” career path-the one that our mothers were discouraged from following. Nothing wrong with serious-but it should connect with you. I truly feel this is what made it easier for many of us to “drop out”. There was no gut connection to our career even on our best days. So in the end it didn’t really matter if it was high paying-once you’ve left and it’s “no paying”, that point is moot! Even if you completely change direction later on, you will have had a taste of passion and won’t settle for anything less.

2)Embrace the love of making money for its own sake. This might go against #1, but I have noticed that many of us girls never took pride in the pleasure of just making the cash. Why is this? It certainly tides the boys over the rough patch or two that are bound to come up even in the most passionate pursuits. Maybe it’s just my age, but it all seemed a bit beneath us to be working for the money. Now I see it’s the ticket to true financial and emotional freedom. As Gordon Gekko said, “Greed is GOOD!” 

3) Feel free to take the time you need for detours. I still believe this can be done while heeding the lessons of “The Feminine Mistake”. Just keep vigilant during the detour just as you would if you were taking any unknown road. Don’t lose track of what’s going on with the road you jumped off-you never know when you will want to get back on.

And if  you leave the line,  be sure to visit from time to time with yummy snacks so they save you a spot somewhere!

What about you, wise friends? What else can we share with our daughters?

letter

Alright, I don’t really expect cuts in the line of the corporately employed. I would never presume to have kept pace in the queue with my cohorts who never took the detours I did. Those friends have sacrificed much and are running the show-well deserved! Even a first grader knows you have to get everyone around you to agree to let you back in before you leave your spot.

As I mentioned the other day, my career has not been a conventional one. I originally jumped off the corporate trajectory to allow for a more flexible workplace and family. I’ve got to admit I might have banked a bit too much on the working world’s warm welcome the first time around. When the chairman of my company called on my last day to encourage me to let him know when I wanted to return, perhaps he didn’t expect that call to come 20 years later! I guess it wasn’t just a blink of an eye to the rest of the world.

The topic of the assumption of re-emergence is covered painfully well in “The Feminine Mistake” by Leslie Bennetts. The women of my generation experienced few initial obstacles in the 80s and 90s. Did it come so easily for us that we took it for granted-like that “nice boy” that you just don’t appreciate? I know many of us were sure when the time was right, we would find our place again.

All I can say is I have far too many friends right now completely dumbfounded and flailing trying to rejoin the workforce and not meeting with much success. We need to do a better job of positively pitching our experiences from the other lines where we have been standing.

And if there is a next time that I get out of line, you can be sure I’ll get everyone to swear on “cuts allowed” when I return! 

 

queue-line-2

Like a chapter right out of The Feminine Mistake, my story is both surprising and ridiculously typical. First scene starts with wide eyed 80s girl in grey pin striped suit and floppy silk bow tie (remember those?) working her way through executive training program by day and living the high life at night. It all comes so easily as the organization pulls me through the ranks, thrilled to have an up and comer with nylons on. Even the birth of my first baby did not slow this train down, as the accommodating bosses offer up an amazing part time executive work week for me. It all should have been “cake and eat it too”, right?

Oh, but its BORING! And there seems more money than ever needed with two preppy dress-for-success incomes.  Oh, did I mention it was boring? I could hop off this train and get on at another stop down the road that I might find more fulfilling. Yes, that’s what I’ll do.  There is no way I will lose my sense of worth, since I have been competing elbow-to-elbow (not to mention shoulder pad-to-shoulder pad) with the boys. I have decades to get this all figured out.

Worse case, these guys won’t forget me, right? Familiar tale, anyone…….

silk-tie