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Monday, November 28, 2011

The Tweet Sound of Success

    I'm not very good at using Twitter and LinkedIn.  I know how to use them, but I am not motivated to tweet or post that often.  Maybe that's a good thing.  I don't want my stream of consciousness to be out in cyber space, but if I do have what I think is a clever thought or witty remark, I will thumb-it-out and click send . . . maybe . . . if I think about it.  That's not even a second thought for many young people today, as was demonstrated by a young lady in Kansas.  Check this out:

    The stir her tweeted comment made allowed her to go from 61 followers to over 12,000 in less than a week!  Any business that is using social media would love to have that kind of success in growing their following so fast is so short a time.  This clearly demonstrates the power the right or pithy comment can have in the world of social networking. 

    For my parks & recreation department I want to grow our Twitter followers and Facebook fans, but I want it to be because of the great things we do, great parks we have, and wonderful opportunities we offer residents for recreation and positive social interaction.  An individual who wants to be controversial and edgy can probably get away with that, but it's a bit trickier for an agency that serves the public and has both a reputation to consider and Council members and taxpayers to answer to.  That said, I make every effort to sound friendly, encouraging and clever in the postings I do on our Facebook page (, and most of all to engage those who 'Like" and comment on our postings. While I would love for us to post or tweet a comment or video and have it go viral, I am content for now with our modest following of 1,200+ people on our Facebook page.

    That's my take.  Now excuse me while I tweet about our new pole dancing class.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Who needs cocaine when you can simply have sugar?

More medical research is suggesting that processed, sugary foods and beverages may affect the brain much like narcotics (as found in the Bloomberg article: Fatty Foods Addictive as Cocaine in Growing Body of Science). As someone who used to consume lots of fatty, sugary and processed foods, this doesn't surprise me. The process of eliminating sugar from my diet was very difficult and I had to endure headaches and feeling deprived (my family had to endure me). Now when I walk into any store that sells junk food I see it as a poison. It's an attitude I had to take to avoid being sucked back in by sugary snacks, cereals and candy. While I still have a sweet-tooth, I am able to satisfy this craving with items that are sugar-free. Now I love the way I eat and weighing 30 lbs less than I did 2 years ago doesn't hurt either. Some may laugh at the thought of some foods as addictive, but I know how hard it can be to change the way one eats. Check out the article and tell me what you think.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Traditional look gives way to new era of uniform fashion

Relevant Topics: Sports, football, social trends, marketing
If you follow college football you are aware of the variety of uniform combinations the Oregon Ducks wear.  A few other teams are also dabbling in changing their 'look' - most recently the University of Maryland with their crazy state flag inspired motif.  As a middle-age guy, I wasn't too crazy about this trend until I started seeing how the players - the individuals who would be wearing them - were reacting when they realized their coach had finally approved the use of a new uniform design.  This video from the Ohio University club house demonstrates how important the look of the uniform is to the players.  If they reacted this way, then think of the potential for attracting impressionable recruits, jersey sales, and the overall exposure the program can get . . . . all because of the uniforms.  Check it out.

Out of the primordial soup: I think this is brilliant.  While I do not care personally for the new look, my opinion really doesn't matter.  And this is not the first time a sports team has changed their uniform design or colors (think of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Los Angeles Kings - teams that changed both), but these new designs will lead the way for a more trendy, hip-hop type of feel for sports uniforms.  I don't dress like a teenager, so I do not see the appeal in wearing uniforms that do not have that classic college football look.  However, today's youth, for the most part, are concerned about dressing in the latest fashion - why wouldn't they want to wear uniforms they see as 'cool'? 

This should mean something to anyone trying to do business with young people.  Kids, teens, and young adults really like this stuff.  The older generation - baby boomers like me - may not get it (nor should they wear most of it), but knowing what the younger generations like will help them to tailor products and services that will appeal to the Gen X, Y and Millennium crowds.   Where they will spend their money should be of concern if we want them to spend it with us.

I was surprised one day when my son showed me a baseball cap he bought  - it was one of the old Milwaukee Brewers caps - you know, the type Robin Yount and Paul Molitor wore in the '80s.  I thought he would hate it, but he thought it was so cool.  So maybe the idea of wearing uniforms with a new, hip design isn't so much  about wearing that new, hip design, but rather about wearing something that my generation isn't wearing.  If it's new to them and we older guys aren't wearing it, perhaps that's what's cool . . . or not.  Like everything else the new uniforms that are rolling out will be popular for a while, but will eventually lose their appeal.  Today's new look is tomorrow's throwback uniform.  One thing's for sure - this is only the beginning, so I might as well get used to it.

The Blog-gining

I had always heard about blogging, but never really thought much about them until I read a few books recently on social media, which explained that blogs are simply web logs (right?), and social media platforms, like Facebook and Twitter, are kinda the same thing (the latter being a micro-blog).  I'm pretty good about taking notes when reading, but beyond reviewing those notes for my own edification, they pretty much remain un-read (which is basically always) and of no benefit to anyone else.  So this is where this blog will come into play.  As I read stuff, hear about stuff, think of and about stuff, I can post it here and hope that a few kind souls will read, ponder, and reply.

Here's the thing - I just turned 50 this year.  Not a big deal for me really.  I still think of myself as someone who's between 20 and 30 years younger.  I'm in pretty good shape, and while my hair turns grey and thins a bit, the thought of getting older doesn't really bother me.  I'm still doing pretty much all the physical activities I did when I was younger - more in fact.  Here's the thing that worries me - becoming obsolete, irrelevant, static, someone who wishes the world would slow down and stop changing . . . this is what scares me.  That and memory loss.

I was the first one in the family to have a Facebook and Twitter account.  I did so as a way to stay current.  I thought, "If I'm going to understand what the buzz is all about I'd better jump into it and start to understand it."  And really, that's the reason for starting this blog - to understand how blogging works, the benefits to me and others who interact, the challenges, the frustrations, and the fun (which is always a primary reason for me to do anything).

Now that I've explained why I'm blogging, I want to explain my rules for my soap box. 
  1. I reserve the right to change my opinion, mind, whatever.  Hey . . . it's my blog.
  2. I will talk and share info about things that are of interest to me. 
  3. I won't talk much about politics or religion.  Not really interested.  That said, rule #1 applies.
  4. I don't care much for abusive language, so profanity or any postings that I feel are inappropriate will probably get deleted.   Yeah, rule #1 applies again here, too.  I know, 'what the h***!'
Topics of interest to me are as follows:
  • Civil liberties and rights
  • Community
  • Corporate Culture
  • Customer Service
  • Education
  • Fun, Games and Play
  • Health and Wellness
  • Leadership and management
  • Marketing
  • Parenting
  • Parks and museums
  • Personal and professional growth
  • Recreation and leisure
  • Science and science fiction
  • Social media
  • Social trends
  • Space program
  • Sports - mainly basketball, baseball, and football
  • Technology
  • The Future!
  • Transportation
  • Travel
  • Waste and recycling
That's all I can think of for now.  The list may grow or shrink, depending on my level of interest.

Finally, I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer.  I will make mistakes, I may say things based on inaccurate information, or I may say something I regret - right or wrong.  I'm calling the blog Talkin' 'bout My Evolution because I'm hoping to work through problems and ideas (with help from anyone else who may lead such a boring life that they decide to drop in now and then) in the hopes of becoming a more informed individual - one who thinks and grows and never stops learning.