About Me

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Milton, Ontario, Canada

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

I do want a blackberry, but...

I don't want to turn into a rude person who can't function without checking it every five minutes.

Yesterday I went to an industry luncheon event that was about three hours long. There was a "networking reception" (read - Free Booze), followed by lunch/intro speeches, followed by a keynote speech.

During the networking reception various people were using their technology, checking in with work emails or calling people along with schmoozing, drinking and general faking loving everyone within a 10 foot radius. I think that use of the blackberry is fine. I mean, you're at an event that is taking you away from work for a number of hours. You likely aren't going to be able to excuse yourself at any other time to take a look at your emails or make any urgent calls, so why not do it during the casual part of the luncheon.

But it seems that people have lost the art of being "disconnected". During lunch and the opening remarks I saw a few people brave the blackberry check, but most made an attempt at discretion holding the devise under the table and only briefly checking in with glances.

It was during the keynote where things went downhill. To say that the keynote speaker was awful would be an understatement. Obviously the organizers of the event believed she would be a great speaker, after all she came with all of the right credentials and was in a position powerful enough that she had to have spent many hours in front of groups presenting or giving speeches. In truth she was horrid. Ironically the speech was on "Engagement".

No one in the room was engaged after about 10 minutes due to her rambley, off-point, inside joke type of speech. And that was when the mass blackberring began. As I don't own such a device, I got to look around the room as people grew bolder and bolder in their use of the device. Maybe they were linking to the websites detailed in her speech... or not.

At my table of 8, only two of us didn't check in (and I would have been twittering away if I actually HAD a blackberry). The girl beside me was engaged in an IM conversation. The man I was sitting beside was setting up meetings for later in the week. All around the room of 600, people were doing the same. Then, then! The speaker pulled out her iPhone (with a point related to her speech, I'm guessing) and got distracted by her Twitter updates and IM pings! EVEN the speaker was lured by the technology.

So does it prove her point? Is Engagement, true engagement when people can't even go to a luncheon anymore without interacting with your product/brand? Have we forgotten our manners? Is blackberring during these situations rude?

People blackberry in meetings all the time. It really pisses me off. Don't come to the meeting if you're too busy. We're in advertising. No one is going to die because you didn't respond to an email right away. I find it plain rude. I bet that some people would even blackberry at a wedding or funeral!

I have a boss who has a device but never, ever takes it out during meetings. When my boss decides to attend something, my boss ATTENDS with full engagement. I really feel that it shows a certain level of class and position to do so. If I ever do get a blackberry it is my goal to follow the example of my boss, not that of the plethora of people in my industry.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Work Boyfriend (WBF)

Do you have one? I do.


The work boyfriend is the guy who you hang out with at work, going for coffee's, lunch, smokes etc. You chat on MSN and gossip about co-workers.

You are both in relationships or married, but if you weren't....

Anyway, my WBF and I don't work together and never have. He is a supplier to me and we just happened to hit it off immediately and thus became friends outside of work. We go out for drinks and lunch and he came to my wedding. He complains about work and life and I do the same to him. We offer each other a sympathetic, other-sex ear.

My marriage doesn't suffer as a result of my WBF. In fact, my husband doesn't care about our 'relationship' at all. I guess our marriage is solid enough for any stupid bouts of jealousy like that. I'm not sure what my WBF's wife thinks of us. To be honest I've never really met her, nor has WBF met my husband. The only exception was the brief time we spent with them at our wedding.

I'm about to head out for lunch with him right now. We should have gone out drinking but things have not worked out for us to get together in the past month or so and thus we are conceding to lunch instead. I'm sure a pint of two will be consumed, but it is not the same thing.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

I am a Suburbanite

Yes. Yes I am.

And I like it damnit.

With a few exceptions I have lived in suburban COTU all of my life. For all my protests about wanting to live in the downtown core proper, I am a suburbanite at heart.

I like my new subdivision with the view of farmland/the Niagara Escarpment in the distance. I like the fact that we live on a street with families. I don't mind the fact that there are only about 10 house designs and I live in a "cookie cutter" home. I like shopping at WalMart, Food Basics, HomeSense. I like eating at Swiss Chalet and East Side Mario's. I prefer to do my baking via a drive thru facility.

Of course, my little town has a lot of "little town" amenities even though my little town was the fastest growing suburb according to the 2006 Census. We have a weekly farmer's market from May-October. We are close to hiking, a (man made) beach, rock climbing, mountain biking, skiing (if you want to call it that), farm with pick your own options yet we are still only 45 minutes away from Toronto. We still have a true "downtown" strip with little shops and stand alone restaurants. Perhaps this has skewed my view of living in the 'burbs.

All I know is when I am at work and we begin to discuss targeting, we inevitably end up in a debate about the urban dwellers versus the suburban dwellers. Many truly believe that if you want to reach the young, hip, early adopters you will be only able to reach them in the true COTU, not in the outskirts. I vehemently disagree. Sure, I'm a 31 year old married mum who owns a home and drives a micro-van. But I wasn't always. I was also a young, hip, chick who had loads of discretionary income and lots of opportunity to spend it. All while living in the suburbs. Just because I don't have a "M" postal code doesn't mean that I'm not worth advertising something "cool" to. Just because I decided to put my roots down 40km away doesn't mean that my life is over and I'll never purchase a non-big box product again.

Just keep it in mind. There are loads of people 18-34 in the 'burbs. And we like it. And we'd like you to understand and talk to us too.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

I do have ideas for posts

I swear, I do. I started the blog at a bad time. Moving one week and a wedding the next with house guests bridging that gap and the hard drive exploding as well.

I want to talk about a slew of things including:

1) Green musings
2) Age appropriate dress in the work place
3) Social media - the buzzword de jour
4) Kids
5) Suburbia
6) The North American view (from a Canadian perspective).

Promise to get to some of it.

Starting soon or next week at latest.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

I've always been a joiner

Really, I have. Of course, I consider myself a leader as well which is why I'd like to create this blog. It'll be random musings about all kinds of stuff and may or may not be of any interest to anyone other than myself, but really who cares? Much like the ever-talked about "viral campaigns" in my day job... if you try to create something that will be passed along or spoken about, it never will be. Things like that must grow organically to be of any value to anyone.

And so and introduction of sorts: I'm 31, a mum, an urbanite trapped in a suburban home (though willingly and without much fight), I work in advertising and read with a ready and varied appetite. I will blog about any randomness that I like and attempt to provide myself with a forum for bettering my writing along with a place to keep my thoughts for prosperity.