Movies + Video Games Are Ideals

I’m patiently waitin’ to view the new God of War video game on Youtube. I stopped playin’ video games four years ago … But…

You know those cool walk throughs? Yeah, they’re dope.

I sometimes watch them when I wanna get some new storytellin’ ideas.

Have you seen a new video game lately? They’re bananas. The graphics are butter now. Smooth, creamy, delicious.

Oh, boy – as I’m writing this – I thinkin’ bout pancakes and bacon, ugh.

So, for the God of War video games, the creators re did a lot of things. Firstly, the main character – Kratos.

He’s really… matured – he’s now a dad, has a full beard, and a bald head. Instead of being a wild womanizer. He still has a bad, bad temper, though.

Sounds cool, right?

This got me thinkin’ – Movies and Video games – through storytellin’ – are tryin’ to sell consumers ideals. An ideal to live up to.

If you look at Kratos, he’s perfect. Perfect body, beard, weapons, fightin’ ability.

In commercials, dudes are shredded and the girls are thin.

In superheroes, the main characters are buffed out & crazy strong.

Now, most people in their life never achieve that level of fitness – at all.

Why?

Takes too long. Too hard. Etc, etc.

But these are the things that people want. And is what self improvement is built on.

Gettin’ the better body, better relationships, more money, a nicer house or car, a better degree, etc.

Self improvement is bout seein’ the ideal on the screen, and addin’ it to your life – no matter how it takes.

Could take a day, could take 20 years.

Doesn’t matter.

These ideals are what life is about. Strive for something greater. Anything.

Why?

Cause it makes life crazy more fulfilling.

That’s why you should try to your best to live up to that ideal as much as possible.

Go for it.

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End Of A Era

Earlier today, I walked past a Babies R US in the heart of Union Square.
It was cleared out. It’s retail space, now. White walls. And trash. Damn.
I remember Toys R Us as a kid. I had a bunch of toys. Hundreds. I loved ’em.
I used beg to my family members for them, weekly. I used to stuff them in a big, looney tunes travel bag, and take ’em everywhere.
KB toys and Toys R Us were my favorite places.
And now they’re both gone. A relic of the Industrial age of the old economy. Where 8 hour works days seemed smart. Where employers wanted to hire everybody and their mom.  And a 401K was all you needed.
Now it’s different.
We’re in a new Age now. Postindustrial. Tech, tech, tech. Speed, speed, speed.
Where the only currency is your ideas.
James Altucher & Seth Godin were right.
Ideas are the only thing that’ll last in this new economy.
This is what Amazon knows.
This is where we’re goin’.
It’s truly an end of a era.

Distribution Is Savin’ Time

Time is the ultimate currency.

It’s finite. We all gotta go some day.

This is why Amazon. And Uber are winning. They’re faster.

It takes me less 5 minutes to catch a Uber. Cabs used to take forever. This is why Uber wins.

I click a product on Amazon. And it’s in my mailbox in two days or less.

This is distribution – the place part of the 4 P’s of marketin’ – and it’s changin’ the game.

Everythin’ is speed speed, speed.

Savin’ people time is the ultimate currency.

Know this.

Business Is Movin’ Quickly

4 years ago, I only got cash tips from customers.

This year – it’s different. People are walkin’ around with phones, cards, cash app, and Venmo. And probably a bunch of stuff that I’ve never heard of.

4 years ago feels like last week.

Hell, I invest in stocks through a freakin’ app.

Wild.

Business is movin’ quickly. Don’t get left behind.

Marketin’ Is The Start Of Your Communication Strategy – Respect It!

I’m a mass communications student.

I love anythin’ where I can connect with another people on big scale.

When I was younger, besides hittin’ push ups in my room, I would stare at the TV, watchin’ show after show. Watchin’ movie after movie after movie (I even watched a movie ‘fore I started  writin’ this blog post).

Mass comms is a whole field that involves…

Writin’.

Movies.

Actin’.

TV.

News.

Public Speakin’.

Radio.

Podcastin’.

Marketin’.

Ads.

PR.

And I’m into most of this stuff (some more than others).

But – why am I into this stuff?

Who knows, man. Passion makes no sense.

Anyway so – quick story – I was at my non profit gig earlier in the month, and I heard the founder/leader yell somethin’ cool.

He clicked off his phone, ran into the room, where we were workin’ and said, ” We got soul cycle!”

To fill you in – we were workin’ on a project to get sponsors to give us stuff, basically fundrasin’. And it was my job to find companies, so the PR department can contact them.

So I made a whole, big list full of companies. And a week later, the PR team snagged Soul Cycle as a sponsor.

What does that mean?

Well, that means free stuff, food, clothes, etc for our organization!

Sound goods, right?

And it all happened cause of my marketin’ data – that’s it.

That’s why when you start your projects – any project – you need to think ’bout the marketin’ first.

It’s the start of your comms strategy.

You need a marketin’ plan.

And it doesn’t have to be a crazy plan. It can be quick an’ dirty.

My plans are super simple. Where I use the 5 W’s. And I bounce the ideas off another team member. As well as a lil’ research. That’s it.

Remember what Dan Kennedy – marketin’ guru – says, “Marketin’ is your business,”

He’s right. And you better respect it!

Later,

Jamual

3 Lessons Learned From Workin’ In A Non Profit

Before the summer started, I was pretty bored. All I had was my weekend customer service gig. And fitness time. And this blog. I really needed somethin’ else to do.

So earlier this summer, I decided to volunteer my talents to non profits.

I lucked out with one close by me, to be a marketin’ assistant.

And the experience’s been pretty cool. I’ve haven’t done any non profit work since high school. Where I taught South African children English. And did some community service projects like planting flowers and stuff. So I thought it was gonna take some gettin’ used too. But this time that wasn’t the case…

… At this non profit, I’ve been doin’  very lil’ physical work. It’s mostly computer work (which is awesome).

I was ’round pretty like minded individuals who talk bout marketin’,  sales, as well as pr. It’s purely a start up environment.  Where everybody’s their doin’ their own projects – plannin’ events, researchin’, callin’ up sponsors, etc.

For me – I’m mostly doin’ research for them. And got to show off my actin’ skills in a video too. Which was really fun.

This experience has taught me quite a bit in terms of workin’ in different workplaces.

These are the things that I’ve learned…

Number One

Communication Is Key

This non profit is filled with marketers and pr people and actors and artists. And we’re always plannin’ new and excitin’ events. And since we’re a non profit – we’re always lookin’ for ways to get companies/people to donate. So the top skills I’ve seen bein’ worked on really hard are communication and teamwork.

Someone is always sharin’ a email. Or a spreadsheet. Or a Goggle Doc.

Someone is always on the phone, lookin’ for good way to ask someone to donate their money, energy, and time.

Communication is key. 

It’s the heart and soul of this organization. And I bet a whole lotta of others. Well, successful ones, at least.

I’ve spent years and years doin’ improv in teams, and workin’ the restaurant industry, so bein’ in a team is easy for me.  Actually I prefer it cause I’m mostly an extrovert. And like to be ’round people. But I can work lone wolf style too.

Even though I can be kinda quiet (I’m not super talkative) I seem to do well in workin’ when in teams. And teamwork makes the dream work.

Number Two

A Good Leader Helps A Whole Lot

I’ve read a good amount of books on leadership. ‘Specially Peter Drucker – whose writin’ on management is fairly good. You should check him out.

The leader/founder at my non profit is a good one. He’s pretty patient with everyone, a very skilled communicator, and is very good at assignin’ tasks to volunteers.

One interestin’ thing I’ve noticed that he does is every 20 minutes or so,  he checks in with a person or group to see the progress that they’ve made on a project.

It’s a very good way to stay on top of people. Really keeps us on our toes (since most people can slack off – no matter what their age). There’s also a no cell phone policy too. Which helps with focus.

Number Three 

Structure Is Key 

When I started workin’, I had a orientation, a rule book in the form of a PowerPoint, and a couple other forms. At first, I thought this was unnecessary, but after thinkin’ it over – it was pretty darn necessary.

Also – when I walk in, I’m usually assigned a project to work on right away. And I’m workin’ on that project for the remainder of the day. Sometimes I’m workin’ on two or three projects at a time. That was last week. That was fun.

I like structure. And multiple projects. Keeps morale way up.

Even though this is a start up environment, which is known for bein’ very loose,  that keeps the vibe is cool, but the steady stream of projects and events keep my engine runnin’. Guess that’s why I haven’t left yet, despite workin’ there for 3 months already.

All in all, I’m really happy with my summer work this year, I actually feel of use, where I can be self startin’, be a generalist – cause I have a wide skill set. And just be ’round like minded people.

Highly recommend non profit work. ‘Specially if want to be ’round people, and meaningful work.

Really nice change of pace from the for profit sector.

Later,

Jamual

 

Skinny Chick Beats Up A Bunch Of Big Dudes – Wild Times!

So, I saw Atomic Blonde last week. You know of the film?

Starrin’ Charlize Theron?

Yeah – I, personally, am in love with this movie. I’ve already seen it twice. And am thinkin’ bout seein’ it ‘gain.

You do know the story, right?

If not – here’s the quick rundown – Charlize is a spy and she has to find a list that is super valuable to the government. Along the way there a whole lot of twists n’ turns, a bunch of action, an’ even a lil’ romance. Oh, an’ it’s set in the 80s with 80s music attached. (one of my favorite musical periods).

Few movies have me leavin’ the theatre, thinkin’ bout it well into the night. But this one made think bout the cool scenes, music and the action (OMG! The action was so good).

If you didn’t know the director – David Leitch – who helped direct the two John Wick movies (which I’m in love with too, probably end up talikin’ bout that too).

Anyway, the action scenes are awesome! There bloody, well paced, and super engagin’. It feels like you’re watchin’ the old hong kong flicks – where the choreography is the definin’ characteristic of films. This director has a passion for action an’ it really shows. A whole lot.

The next definin’ characteristic was the music. All 80’s pop. The best era, period! The movie would even play with the sound an’ volume, where it would go in an’ out through scene. This was cool cause it made you feel very immersed in the experience. Addin’ to the down to earth quality the film already has.

And throughout, the second viewin’ of it – keep shazamin’ songs for later, cause there were some that me – a 80’s music buff – didn’t know. At all. Surprisingly.

Like this one. 

Or this one.

So Good!

To go with the 80’s music, the film had a 80’s look too.

The costume design had throw backs to 80’s hip hop culture.  Even the titles had a 80’s graffiti look (awesome!)

A lot of the places were dark, dingy, an’ cold. But other places were really well it with neon lights. And the neon lights bounced of Charlize’s skin tone, perfectly. Leitch has a nice visual eye. Really nice.

While in love with this film, it’s not all super good.

As an writer, the story – the final version on screen – is okay. It’s a basic spy story. With double crossin’ abound. And if you’re confused bout a certain double cross, the movie tells you in the next scene or too.

Personally, I’m not gonna judge the writin’ too harshly cause it’s an action flick as heart (they’re not known for the greatest plots). And – straight up – writin’ is hard, hard, hard!

But – I do gotta say – the dialogue was cool. It was laconic, dead. Which went with the bleak tone, perfectly.

Oh – I almost forgot – the lead, Charlize!

She was awesome. And super down to earth. And didn’t feel super overpowered like other action stars like Arnold in Commando.

She got beat up, bloody, bruised.

When she was sad, you felt it.

When she was angry, you felt it.

When she was emotionless, you felt jack.

A plus performance. Pretty much the whole cast was dope too…

… All in all, I was very impressed with this movie. I thought it was gonna be good. And it was.

You should definitely go see this if you like action, guns, 80’s music, and/or neon lights!

It won’t disappoint.

Later,

Jamual.