Thursday, October 29, 2009

Edmonton Trip - Day 6, 7 & 8

Day 6 - Monday I hung finally caught up on reading blogs, after being away from that for a few days, as well as met up with friends David and Kylie. I did end up going to Da De O a New Orleans style 50s Diner/Bar on Whyte Ave in Edmonton. It was a pretty cool place and I got to try their spicy specialty beer locally brewed by Alley Kat The Charlie Flint's lager brewed with Chili powder.

Day 7 - On Tuesday I met up with Mackenzie at Remedy Cafe in Old Strathcona. In the evening my Dad and I went over to Uncle Myron and Aunt Betty's place for a delicious dinner, great conversation, and watched the Edmonton Oilers lose.

Day 8 - Early Wednesday morning my Dad and I left Edmonton and headed back down to Washington. We had weird weather on and off, sometimes driving in snow, sometimes driving in perfectly dry and nice weather, and sometimes driving in rain. We stopped at the Real Canadian Superstore once more before leaving the country, this time in Airdrie. We stopped in Radium Hot Springs for a quick half hour swim in the hot springs and saw some beautiful scenery throughout the mountain areas. After crossing the US/Canada border we stopped in Spokane Valley for a dinner at Boston's Gourmet Pizza (a US spin-off to the popular Canadian restaurant). We took a detour on the way to Yakima by heading through the Tri-Cities area.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Edmonton Trip - Day 4&5

Day 4 of my trip was the first full day in Edmonton. Along with catching up with the Jones' my Dad and I went to visit my Grandma in the hospital. It was good seeing her, of course not in these circumstances, but good nonetheless. After the hospital visit we headed back to the Jones' where I caught up on some Canadian TV classics (such as The Littlest Hobo and Hockey Night in Canada). My Dad and I went to dinner with Uncle Myron and Aunt Betty and had a nice evening with them. We ended the evening like the old days with a dip in the hot tub.

Day 5 was Sunday which included church service at First Church, (Canadian) Thanksgiving turkey meal at the church afterwards, and a quick shopping trip to the Great Canadian Superstore where I picked up a bunch of Canadian only food products including Just Right cereal, Dill Pickle/Salt & Vinegar chips, and some Crispy Crunch bars. The rest of teh afternoon was spent playing with Marcus and Hailey, and Curtis & Nicole (#2) picked me up in the evening to head to Jeff Gould's birthday party where we had some delicious DQ Ice Cream cake and played Wii.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Edmonton Trip - Day 2 & 3

Day 2 and 3 of my trip was mainly traveling. After spending the morning seeing a bit more of San Francisco I took BART to the Oakland Airport where I caught my Southwest flight to Seattle. Thanks to Andrew Ellenberger for being a great host.

When in Seattle I caught the airport shuttle over to Yakima where my Mom picked me up and drove me to their home. We did some catching up and tries to get to bed at a decent time as we had an early morning.

Day 3 started with my Dad and I dropping my Mom off at the airport shuttle. We started out on thwarted road at about 5am for Edmonton. We drove through Spokane, Cranbrook, Crowsnest Pass, Calgary, Red Deer, and finally Edmonton. Great driving conditions throughout except a full hour of traffic tie-up on the Interstate east of Ellensberg, WA due to a crash. We stopped in Calgary for dinner at Montana's and eventually arrived in Edmonton at our destination of the Jones' at about 11:30pm.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Edmonton Trip - Day 1

Day 1 of my trip to Edmonton was quite packed. I left my apartment at 6am when I was picked up by Mike who dropped me off at the train station in downtown Fresno. I got on my train which I rode all the way to Richmond, CA in the north bay area. In Richmond I transferred over to BART which I rode a couple stops south to Berkeley. Here I walked around both the city and the University quite a bit while carrying my full backpack (which was a great workout with all the hills!).

I sat down for lunch at Dara Thai / Lao Cuisine where I ate a delicious meal. After some more exploring the campus and simple relaxing on a grassy area I headed back to the BART station. I caught the train down into San Francisco where I would be meeting Andrew Ellenberger. I walked through the financial district to the Trans-American Pyramid where he works. After meeting up we walked through some areas of northern San Francisco including Little Italy, the Wharf, Pier 39, and the Embarcadero. One of my highlights was finding a mini-donuts place on Pier 39. They were delicious.

We caught the street car and bus down to Andrew's place where we dropped off our bags. We headed down to Haight Ashbury (which is close to his place) where we found an Irish Pub. I had a reuben sandwich and a Molson Canadian. We made one more stop at a pub before heading back to Andrew's place to sleep.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Dyson Fan

This summer I had the pleasure to use a Dyson Airblade Hand Dryer at the MoMA in New York City. I had wanted to try one from the moment I had heard about them, but never was at a place that had them. It was everything I hoped for and more. If you don't know about the Dyson Airblade, watch this video:

Dyson recently announced their new room fan, which in Dyson fashion is quite expensive. The best part of Dyson (in my opinion) is that they do tackle problems from different angles and utilize creativity to solve those problems rather than just taking the road well traveled. Dyson is a great example of marketing in design.

Read more about the cool background and features of the new Dyson room fan at Fast Company and UberReview.

Thursday, October 08, 2009


My current phone as well as my last cell phone were both made by HTC. I thoroughly enjoy the phones they come out with, and in my mind they are really the only phones that compete with the iPhone. And one thing that blows Apple out of the water is the selection that HTC offers, whereas Apple's idea of selection is black and white.

I would like to introduce you to the new HTC HD2. I wrote previously about the HTC Touch HD, and was really impressed. The new HD2 is just as exciting.

One thing you may notice right away is the large screen. The screen is an expansive 4.3" diagonal (compared to the iPhone's 3.5") while still retaining about the same size as the iPhone. The screen is also capacitive (as opposed to resistive touch) and offers WVGA resolution (more than twice the resolution of the iPhone). The HD2 is a little thinner than the iPhone but it is slightly wider and taller. Other great additions for this phone include 448 MB of RAM, 1GHz processor, built in tethering, 5MP camera with dual LED flash, 3.5mm stereo audio jack, G/Proximity/Ambient light sensors, digital compass, as well as very inclusive integration of social networking including facebook, twitter, youtube and flickr.

Also check out the video about HTC Sense, which replaces TouchFLO 3D. It looks pretty great.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Influence your marketing before someone else does

A good post from Church of the Customer Blog (part 1 here) about David Letterman's recent apology(ies).

I think it brings up a great marketing point. It is important to control/influence/affect your marketing and brand before other people do and you lose all control.

While Letterman did something that many people might see as bad or a sign of poor judgment, the truth is we all make mistakes both personally and as companies. It is, in my opinion, better to confront it and have your side heard first.

This does two things:
  1. You guide the conversation, taking it places that can benefit you and your brand.
  2. Allows you to come across as more authentic, because you can admit when you are wrong.
This is also why social media is so important. Not everyone has a great outlet like David Letterman to apologize to the world. If you have a social media presence that is meaningful it is a lot easier to be authentic with your community.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Career Move

After much consideration and prayer I recently decided that working at Target in the position of Executive Team Leader was not where I need to be. I made the decision about 3 weeks ago to put in my notice with Target and look for another career path. It was not an easy decision, as I have spent almost two and a half years working at Target, and most of that time working at the same store. The team I have worked with for the past couple of years has been great. I learned a lot about both myself and business/management/marketing in this position, but I really felt it was time to move on.

One of the worst parts of leaving is saying goodbye to people that I've spent a lot of time with since starting with Target. Of course, it won't be a complete goodbye to everyone, but in this capacity it will. My send-off was very touching, and included 4 goodbye cards, 3 Marie Calendar pies, a whole bunch of goodbye hugs & well-wishes, and 1 smart car with some messages written on the windows. It's really great to know that you've made a difference for people and I won't ever forget my 314 team.

Here are some pictures of my car after some team members had their way with it.

What can I say, it's true!

Some things will be missed, like eating pizza for lunch with certain people.

I'll be missed.

Of course I will come back to visit.

I am therefore currently looking for another career opportunity more in line with my passions and talents. My degree is in marketing and would absolutely love to find something in that field. I've set up this website landing page for prospective employers to take a look at some of my creativity, my resume(s), and my cover letter.

If you know of anyone hiring that is looking for some good talent, send them to my page