November 30th, 2009


Well, there you go ...

OK ... I'm still feeling rather cranky about that e-mail that I got from the section manager over on ChicagoNow last week ... for all the reasons that I previously noted, plus I discover that they've recently added some "name blogger" who's supposedly writing about "career guidance for young professionals" but most of his blog posts have been about the job search, admittedly from the other side of the table. I'm worried that they'll figure they don't need The Job Stalker with him on board. I've really been stewing over this ... it's like another example of how those who have solid, stable jobs (this guy is a partner in one of the big PR firms in town and is on a dozen major boards, etc., etc., etc.) have everything break their way, while others are struggling to feed the family ramen.

On a more technical level, I did take some of the commentary about my writing over there to heart, and greatly reduced my use of quotation marks in my latest post. I tend to write "verbally" and use quotes and italics to sort of carry inflection and emphasis the way I might say something, and am so used to that format that I probably "don't see it" as much as others do, but looking over the previous posts I could get how that might be distracting. Unfortunately, I also tend to use quotes when using a word or phrase that I might not be 100% connected with (for instance in my latest post, where I use "coached" ... where it implies a certain cynicism around the term ... or "elevator speech" where it might not be a recognized term).

I also "pulled out the big guns" with one of my biggest "hints" ... this being the finely-honed "networking cards" that I use. As pissed off as I was to be being berated about not spewing out everything in the first week of posting, this is one of my "signature items" and I hope it goes over well. I tried hard to not make it look like a commercial for VistaPrint (and I used their "generic" URL rather than anything "affiliated") but felt I needed to let folks know that they really ought to get onto the VP mailing list for sales (heck, this morning they had a mailing offering the premium cards "for free"!). One thing that the gal "suggested" was that I break my posts into smaller bits, so I didn't go into particular detail on stuff that I would have normally added, which means that I'm going to have to figure out how to effectively backtrack to something mentioned in this for follow-up. Bleh.

Won't somebody just HIRE ME and I won't have to mess with this stuff?

Anyway, today is also the last of the month, which means that I've successfully completed the NaBloPoMo ... which I assume means nothing other than I don't have think about that anymore.

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The Black Oil

Oh, just in case you were wondering ...

That guy with the Trump thing? I un-followed him today. It was a combination of a couple of things ... first of all, I realized that I was seeing the same "inspirational quotes" over and over again, so it's a limited list being automatically spewed out, and the repetition was becoming irritating on its own ... secondly, I actually clicked through and looked at the "Trump Network".

Now, I realize that I'm probably not the best "judge" for a Network Marketing thing ... after all, I failed miserably in the ones that I'd been involved in, largely for the reason that I was interested in the products, what they did, and how they could help people. It became very clear after a while, that in MLM the people who are on that side of things are, in the poker term, "dead money" ... they'll never win. The people who "win" in MLM are the sharks, the guys who will squeeze cash commitments out of people who are desperately trying to buy into a dream, the guys who will say anything to get a signature on a contract, the guys who do not care what destruction they leave in their wake.

One look at the Trump videos and I was sure where the focus was. There was not a single word about what was being sold ... no product information AT ALL! It was all about process, and the process involved was exactly the same Affiliate/SEO black-hat crap that's all over the web with programs that only exist to spew out other programs (and a few cheesy e-books), with no benefit other than one more squeeze page leading to one more disgustingly emotional pitch, leading to another bundle of zero-cost e-books and videos about how to do what the person that just scammed you did.

I understand from Googling it, that Trump bought a floundering MLM that does, indeed, have products (nutrition and weight loss, quelle suprise), with a "hook" of a urine test (!) which managed to get its own page on QuackWatch.

However, this is all about the scam, the "black hat" deals, the obnoxious template sites, and playing off of Trump's reputation (or, as a semi-literate poster said in defense of this scam: "Donald Trump, the owner of this trump network is a multi billionaire and he wouldn't bother trying to run a scam and dirt his name over a couple of million bucks, it's simply not worth it to him.").

I do, however, have to hand it to the guys setting this up ... they threw the whole internet/affiliate marketing playbook at this in pre-launch. The web is seeded with articles, blog posts, and comments that purport to look at the "scam" and then turn around with something like "Trump's too big to get involved in a scam!" revelation, with no mention of products, program, or company.

I just find it very depressing that it seems like the only people making money in this world are working some sort of a scam. I flip through the TV dial late at night trying to get to sleep and see infomercial after infomercial telling folks how they can make money ... by exploiting other people ... be it buying their "excess" jewelry, grabbing their home in foreclosure, offering pennies on the dollar for annuities, "consolidating" credit into highly disadvantageous commitments, or dangling illusory "business opportunities" in front of desperate people. It's a sick world, and it sure looks like this Trump thing is just a big ugly symptom of that, and another way for the evil and unethical to win again.

Bleh ...

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Ta da ...

But, then again, you were marking the posts off a calendar, weren't you?

Actually, with this post, I'm up to 51 posts in 30 days.


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Writer's Block: Name that tune

Is there any song you'll never grow tired of hearing? If so, what is it, how long have you loved it, and why?

There are several, the oddest of which is Madonna's La Isla Bonita which has always stuck in my mind as emblematic of my Shamanic training in Peru and elsewhere in Latin America (probably due to the San Pedro).

"Back in the day" I used to listen to Led Zeppelin's Kashmir over and over again to get ready to hit the clubs, so I know that bears endless repeating.

There are various old Goth tunes which are likely in this category, with things like Bauhaus' Bela Lugosi's Dead, Type-O Negative's Black Number One, The Sisters of Mercy's
Dominion/Mother Russia
, Lucretia My Reflection, or This Corrosion, and Joy Division's She's Lost Control, Love Will Tear Us Apart, and In A Lonely Place.

Some Punk classics slip in, such as Gang Of Four's What We All Want, which was another pre-club fave.

I also have a soft spot for a lot of the "new romantic" bands, but I wonder if these were looped they'd lose some of their charm, assorted cuts by Spandau Ballet, ABC, etc.

Of course there are scads of "Classic Rock" tunes, from Black Sabbath's Solitude or Spiral Architect, Jefferson Airplane's Eskimo Blue Day or Martha or Today, The Zombie's Time Of The Season, Blue Öyster Cult's Astronomy, and probably a dozen things by Jethro Tull.

So, yeah, there are songs like that!

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