All That We Let In
I was listening to an NPR On the Media podcast this morning from a few weeks ago and the guest said that whatever a blog is, it has to be exactly of the moment. She said, if it takes you longer than an hour and a half to write then it isn't a blog, that it's true and real in the moment that you are writing it and, in essence, is afterwords disposable.

Most of us would be shy to state a strong belief only to disagree with ourselves tomorrow, or the next day. But it was Ralph Waldo Emerson who said that a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of litle minds. He said that we must speak what we believe today in our loudest voice and, tomorrow, do the same even if it be different. It was his position that a ship that made a hundred tacks on its journey would reveal, in the end, its true course and destination. His belief was that consistency gets us nowhere. His point was that after a thousand tacks we will still regress to the essence of our true path. That from the macro level those seeemingly flip-flop choices of tacking back and forth bring us to the same ultimate destination.

So it is now that I beg for the macro. To see how it is that what I am doing now will lead to my ultimate truth. Hmmmm. This relates, at least in the ephemeral sense, to what it is that I blogged about this summer. What is truth? What is it that is constant, if anything?

Here, now, in this moment, I can only believe in here, the present. There is nothing else. There is only now and am I am too tired to consider what it is that brought us here. That, or, perhaps, I am unwilling to consider it.

"We are in an evolution I have heard it said. Everyone so busy now but do we move ahead. Planets hurling and atoms splitting. And a sweater for your love you sit there knitting. Well, I don't know where it all begins and I don't know where it will end, but we're better off for all that we let in."

And there it is. What is it that we let in? Please, God, if there is one, can we let it be more than about blatant and bland consumerism? Can it be about something more? Can it be about pushing ahead and helping the human venture? Can we get there?

Perhaps I'll believe differently on another day, but I believe that the Glo to Sleep will make a difference. I believe that the world will catch up to where we are and they will understand what Tim has created for the world.

Here's hoping.


Mmmmm. Toast.

A toasty new site, discovered by The Marketing God-in. We wanted our name on toast, so we bought a piece for $40 USD. And the best part is that all proceeds are being donated to charity. Fun AND worthy!


Beyond A Marketing Campaign

When Dove initially launched their Real Beauty campaign, back in 2004, I was one of the first to stand up and applaud. I even remember calling into a radio talk show, to give my thumbs up (and strong opinion) as men and women openly discussed the idea of using REAL women in ads and on billboards (most of the male callers, at that time, were disgusted to have to look at some women's "flabby thighs" or round belly - they wanted to see supermodels!).

Well, the latest in the Dove campaign is a fast-forward-type film of the creation of a supermodel image. Several of my girlfriends have sent me the link - passing it along to everyone in their own address book. I'm witnessing something beyond a campaign - I'm seeing a movement. A movement of women embracing their own real beauty. A movement of mothers sharing these images of "real beauty" with their daughters. A movement where women can feel like it's okay to just be themselves.

As a marketer, I admire the Dove Real Beauty campaign. As a woman, I'm in awe of the Real Beauty movement. As both, a marketer and a woman, I thank Dove.


Listen Up!

My daughter is profoundly deaf. She has a cochlear implant and with her equipment turned on she can hear sounds as quiet as 20dB - a kitten's meow, the sound of a brush going through her hair, or a tweeting bird high in a tree. With her equipment turned off, she hears nothing.

We have spent countless hours working on her hearing and speech and the one thing I have learned, that stands out more than anything, is the distinct difference between hearing and listening. I see it clearly every day with my deaf daughter, but I also see it in many of the hearing people in my life. I'm sure everyone does.

There are people in our lives that never care to listen (or hear) - they seem very comfortable only talking and seem to take much joy in whatever they are saying. They obviously do not feel the need to hear what others have to say.

Then there is the complete opposite to that - a person that is kind and thoughtful, quite soft-spoken, and intensely private. During a conversation, they continually ask questions, encouraging you to talk. It appears as if they are listening and interested, but I often think they can't really be listening because they're too busy, in their own mind, thinking of how to keep you talking so they don't have to.

That brings us to the next kind of person - the one who talks alot, enjoys talking, but pauses to pretend to listen. You know they are not really listening - if you are having a face-to-face conversation, you can see the vacant look when you're talking, or how easily distracted they become with their surroundings. Or the worst is when you are on the phone, and it's your turn to talk and there is always this big ol' pregnant pause after you've said your bit - you know damn well they are not listening to you. It's unfair, because you have patiently listened to all they are saying, and when it's your turn, you deserve the same courtesy. When I sense this is happening, I always test the person by not finishing a thought, or saying something completely random - I'm always right . . . they don't pick up on the incongruity. They weren't listening. It's annoying and it's hurtful.

Or how about the "arguer"? They are so anxious to disagree with you that they choose not to listen to what you are saying. They are watching your mouth move, but not listening. You wanna bang your head against the wall when they're done talking because you had just made the exact same point they just did, but they're standing there, arguing with you. So clearly not listening!

Then there's our children. (Especially teenagers!) They nod and agree when you are trying to tell them something important, but you know they are not listening. And as a parent, you test them. "What did I just say?!" We talk slowly and loudly when we really need them to listen - we get in their face. But, we're often met with the blank stare. They can hear us! But they are not listening.

My own mom is a great listener (not to mention, always has great advice after she's listened). My best friend is a wonderful listener! I tend to talk a bit more than her, but I always feel like she's listening - no matter what I'm carrying on about. I do the same for her. That's why we're best friends. (And we do alot of talking and listening!!)

I have always had a natural salesmanship ability - my first boss told me I could sell ice to the Inuit. I was once asked what made me such a great salesperson. My response, "I listen. I listen to what is being said and I even listen to what is not being said." It's how you connect with people.

So many people we come across have such wonderful and interesting things to say. Our kids have the most amazing things to say.
Are you listening?