W: WiFi

X: Xp



Thank God …. A is still Apple

Employee: Excuse me sir, may I talk to you?

Boss: Sure, come on in. What can I do for you?

Employee: Well sir, as you know, I have been an employee of this prestigious firm for over ten years.

Boss: Yes.

Employee: I won’t beat around the bush. Sir, I would like a raise. I currently have four companies after me and so I decided to talk to you first.

Boss: A raise? I would love to give you a raise, but this is just not the right time.

Employee: I understand your position, and I know that the current economic down turn has had a negative impact on sales, but you must also take into consideration my hard work, pro- activeness and loyalty to this company for over a decade.

Boss: Taking into account these factors, and considering I don’t want to start a brain drain, I’m willing to offer you a ten percent raise and an extra five days of vacation time. How does that sound?

Employee: Great! It’s a deal! Thank you, sir!

Boss: Before you go, just out of curiosity, what companies were after you?

Employee: Oh, the Electric Company, Gas Company, Water Company and the Mortgage Company! LOL

Is Pink Necessary?

January 24, 2011

Is Pink Necessary?
Published: January 21, 2011

The “princess phase.” So inevitable is this period in the maturation of girls today that it should qualify as an official developmental stage, worthy of an entry in Leach or Brazelton: first crawling, then walking, then the urgent desire to wear something pink and spark­ly. Whether we smile indulgently or roll our eyes at the drifts of tulle and chiffon that begin accumulating in our daughters’ rooms around age 4, participation in these royal rituals has come to seem necessary, even natural.
Yet the princess phase, at least in its current hyper-feminine and highly commercial form, is anything but natural, or so Peggy Orenstein argues in “Cinderella Ate My Daughter.” As she tells the story, in 2000 a Disney executive named Andy Mooney went to check out a “Disney on Ice” show and found himself “surrounded by little girls in princess costumes. Princess costumes that were — horrors! — homemade. How had such a massive branding opportunity been overlooked? The very next day he called together his team and they began working on what would become known in-house as ‘Princess.’ ” Mooney’s revelation yielded a bonanza for the company. There are now more than 26,000 Disney Princess items on the market; in 2009, Princess products generated sales of $4 billion.

Disney didn’t have the tiara market to itself for long. Orenstein takes us on a tour of the princess industrial complex, its practices as coolly calculating as its products are soft and fluffy. She describes a toy fair, held at the Javits Center in New York, at which the merchandise for girls seems to come in only one color: pink jewelry boxes, pink vanity mirrors, pink telephones, pink hair dryers, pink fur stoles. “Is all this pink really necessary?” Orenstein finally asks a sales rep.

“Only if you want to make money,” he replies.

The toy fair is one of many field trips undertaken by Orenstein in her effort to stem the frothy pink tide of princess products threatening to engulf her young daughter. The author of “Schoolgirls: Young Women, Self Esteem, and the Confidence Gap,” among other books, Orenstein is flummoxed by the intensity of the marketing blitz aimed at girls barely old enough to read the label on their Bonne Bell Lip Smackers. “I had read stacks of books devoted to girls’ adolescence,” she writes, “but where was I to turn to under­stand the new culture of little girls, from toddler to ‘tween,’ to help decipher the potential impact — if any — of the images and ideas they were absorbing about who they should be, what they should buy, what made them girls?”

She turns, like many a journalist before her, to the child pageant circuit, the world of sequined “cupcake dresses” and custom-made “flippers” (dental prosthetics that disguise a gap-toothed smile) that has proved irresistible to reporters since the killing of the 6-year-old beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey in 1996. To her credit, Orenstein recognizes this as well-trodden ground. “It would be easy pickin’s for me to attack parents who tart up their daughters in hopes of winning a few hundred bucks and a gilded plastic trophy; who train them to shake their tail feathers on command, to blow kisses at the judges and coyly twirl their index fingers into their dimpled cheeks,” she writes. “But really, what would be the point? That story has been told, to great success and profit.”

Such meta-observations, which appear throughout the book, are part of Orenstein’s method: she argues with herself, questions her own assumptions, ventures an assertion and then has second thoughts — all in full view of the reader. At times, her assiduously cultivated ambivalence seems to paralyze her; she gets stuck between competing concerns, unable to say anything definitive about what she believes. By and large, however, Orenstein’s reflexive self-interrogation is a good match for her material. It allows her to coax fresh insights from the exhaustively analyzed subject of gender and its discontents.

In the case of child beauty pageants, Orenstein offers a shrewd critique of why media exposés of the phenomenon are so perennially popular. They “give viewers license, under the pretext of disapproval, to be titillated by the spectacle, to indulge in guilty-pleasure voyeurism,” she observes. “They also reassure parents of their own comparative superiority by smugly ignoring the harder questions: even if you agree that pageant moms are over the line in their sexualization of little girls — way over the line — where, exactly, is that line, and who draws it and how?” Orenstein allows us to watch her struggle with these questions, and when she arrives at a few answers, they feel well earned.

Orenstein finds one such enlightening explanation in developmental psychology research showing that until as late as age 7, children are convinced that external signs — clothing, hairstyle, favorite color, choice of toys — determine one’s sex. “It makes sense, then, that to ensure you will stay the sex you were born you’d adhere rigidly to the rules as you see them and hope for the best,” she writes. “That’s why 4-year-olds, who are in what is called ‘the inflexible stage,’ become the self-­appointed chiefs of the gender police. Suddenly the magnetic lure of the Disney Princesses became more clear to me: developmentally speaking, they were genius, dovetailing with the precise moment that girls need to prove they are girls, when they will latch on to the most exaggerated images their culture offers in order to stridently shore up their femininity.” For a preschool girl, a Cinderella dress is nothing less than an existential insurance policy, a crinolined bulwark to fortify a still-shaky sense of identity.

Orenstein is especially sharp-eyed on the subject of what comes after the princess phase, for in the micro-segmented world of marketing to children, there is of course a whole new array of products aimed at girls who begin to tire of their magic wands. These include lines of dolls with names like Moxie Girlz and Bratz: “With their sultry expressions, thickly shadowed eyes and collagen-puffed moues, Bratz were tailor-made for the girl itching to distance herself from all things rose petal pink, Princess-y, or Barbie-ish,” Orenstein notes. “Their hottie-pink ‘passion for fashion’ conveyed ‘attitude’ and ‘sassiness,’ which, anyone will tell you, is little-girl marketing-speak for ‘sexy.’ ”

As Orenstein forges on, braving Toys “R” Us, the American Girl doll store and a Miley Cyrus concert, the reader may occasionally wonder: Is she reading too much into this? After all, it’s just pretend; it’s just play. “To a point I agree,” Orenstein half-concedes, equivocal as ever. “Just because little girls wear the tulle does not mean they’ve drunk the Kool-Aid. Plenty of them shoot baskets in ball gowns or cast themselves as the powerful evil stepsister bossing around the sniveling Cinderella.” By this point the reader knows what’s coming. “Yet even if girls stray from the prescribed script, doesn’t it exert its influence? Don’t our possessions reflect who we are; shape, even define, our experience?”

The author’s process of restless self-examination continues, all the way to the book’s open-ended conclusion. Orenstein has done parents the great favor of having this important debate with herself on paper and in public; she has fashioned an argument with its seams showing and its pockets turned inside out, and this makes her book far more interesting, and more useful. Because the thing about a phase is: kids grow out of it. (The marketers are counting on that.) But parents’ internal deliberations about what’s best for their children are here to stay.

Annie Murphy Paul is the author of “Origins: How the Nine Months Before Birth Shape the Rest of Our Lives.”


News Casting goes Funny Crazy

What News Anchors Do During Commercial Breaks w/sound

model falls and news anchor laugh their asses off

World most embarrasing moment

Amazingly Clever Logos

January 17, 2011

A logo for Bison in the shape of a bison, pretty cool.

A logo for the CFO Cycling Team.

A logo for Ukraine’s Consumer Society and Citizen Networks.

“E” and “D”, and an electric plug at the same time, awesome.

Such a perfect logo for the Rehabilitation Hospital Corporation of America

Amazingly Clever Logos
Published on 4/14/2010

Typeface’s logo made of… well, typefaces.

If you look at it carefully, you’ll see Australia’s Map.

Sabine Clappaert, MD, Muse Communication

Marketing needs the woman’s touch…and why it makes good business sense
Sabine Clappaert, MD, Muse Communication

Last year was the year in which marketing-to-women came to Europe. A greater number of articles appeared on the influence of women in the economy in newspapers, industry magazines and on marketing websites.

Bold titles heralding the fact that women control the finances in most families, that they buy the majority of almost everything including fashion, groceries, beauty, healthcare, DIY and consumer electronics, plus half of computers and cars and one third of power tools, seemed to be appearing everywhere. Phrases such as “contextual web thinking” and “holistic approach” were discussed at many marketing seminars and in the business section of many reputable newspapers. The untapped opportunity (and associated sales revenue) presented by women consumers was HOT news.

During an interview, a Belgian journalist asked me a very interesting question that approached the topic from a strategic business perspective.

“Do you think we need more female marketers?” she asked. “Yes!” I replied. Then she asked, “Why?” which was the difficult part of the question.


“When we overlay men’s more linear, compartmentalized approach to marketing with the female consumers’ complex, non-linear, web-based thinking (and consuming) patterns, things don’t quite match up, do they?”


Why indeed! This leads me to the heart of this article, to explain why industry needs more women to think about and plan and execute its marketing.

Women marketers approach marketing differently. Men tend to think in linear, hierarchical terms. They want the facts, the numbers and the statistics. And the same goes for male marketers. Women (and women marketers), on the other hand, tend to approach topics more contextually, interconnecting knowledge, experiences, facts, opinions, relationships, goals and dreams in a non-linear, web-like manner.

When we overlay men’s more linear, compartmentalized approach to marketing with the female consumers’ complex, non-linear, web-based thinking (and consuming) patterns, things don’t quite match up, do they?

Now, I am in no way saying that products for women can only be promoted by women. What I am saying is that a product for women marketed only by men is going to be lacking in something. As in business, the exclusion of either gender in the marketing process is never a good idea.

To market a product well to either gender, women need to be included in the process. Women marketers, by the sheer fact that they are, well…women, will approach marketing a little differently than men do. They will tend to approach it the way they approach life: in a holistically, interconnected “everything matters” kind of way.

That does not mean women don’t crunch numbers too. Women marketers do demand statistics, facts and numbers just as much as their male counterparts. But they don’t use the number-crunched outcomes as an all defining influence on their marketing approach. Women marketers will often pay attention to their gut feeling, or react to something that is not reflected in the statistics, because they know – the way women do – that it holds an important element of truth that shouldn’t be ignored.

So do we need more female marketers? Yes, absolutely we do. They must be marketed to differently than men. And who better to understand the audience than someone who is part of it? The cardinal rule: really understand your audience. And when possible, BE your audience.

About the author
Sabine Clappaert is founder and Managing Director of Muse Communication, a marketing agency specialising in smart marketing to women.


Finding your bliss in life

January 14, 2011

Imagine; there are two lawyers. One became a lawyer because other people told him that it’s a prestigious and respected profession with lots of opportunity to make good money. The other became a lawyer because of his zealous interest in legal matters. Money or prestige was never a concern to him. Who do you think will standout in their career and have a fulfilling life?

If you want to succeed in your career choice and live a fulfilling life, you first need to find out what you love to do, something that you don’t mind doing 24 hours/day, seven days/week and 365 days/year! In fact, the only way to be the best in something is to be totally passionate to the extent of being totally obsessed with it. Obsessed is when you breathe, eat and sleep with it in mind every single day of your life.

Your heart, mind, body and soul must be in it! You would even be willing to do it free since money is no longer a consideration. In fact, you would even be willing to pay to get the opportunity to do what you love. The reason why it’s so important to do the things you love is that you will find that life is no longer mundane. Life becomes fun, pleasurable and joyful. You are no longer working just for the money. Even if you don’t make much money initially, you will not mind it because you will be having fun while working. Work becomes play.

When you are doing things that you are not truly passionate about, how can you ever hope to succeed if you don’t give your 100%? When you are doing things you love, your inherent advantage will be far superior compared to others as you will be willing to give your 100% and more. To succeed in life, you will need all the advantages as you possibly can get hold of.

The ‘Why’ and ‘What’
Once you have identified your bliss, you then need to know the ‘Why’ (or the purpose) behind your ‘What’.

If scuba diving is your hobby, then ask yourself why you love it.

Are you doing it because most of your friends are into it and you enjoy their company, or are you doing it because you have a higher purpose?

Let’s assume that you love scuba diving because you appreciate nature and wildlife, and at the same time, you want to save marine life and make a difference to the environment.

Let’s assume a few months later, a new craze such as sky diving comes and all your friends suddenly abandon scuba for sky diving.

Do you think you will be following the crowd? In your case, it’s highly unlikely since you have a higher purpose compared to others.
It’s extremely important to find out the real reasons or your true purpose behind the things you love to do. This will ensure that you do not get blown away when the wind changes direction suddenly.

Sadly, many people don’t make any progress in life since they are not firmly rooted to a goal or passion. You need to focus. If you chase two rabbits, both will escape. It will also motivate you to keep going when things don’t go your way, which often happens. Instead of giving up, you will stick to your chosen paths and find a way to make it work.
From ‘Why’ to ‘Wow’
Knowing your ‘Why’ is not good enough. It’s just a beginning. Your ultimate goal is to find your individual ‘Wow’.
WOW = Doing Things You Love
Making Lots of Money
Getting Lots of Appreciation
all at the time!
When you listen to interviews of top-notch movie stars, most will admit that they feel blessed and they can’t believe that people are willing to pay them millions of dollars. The goose-bumps they get at their movie premieres when thousands of fans scream their name and “I Love You”, is their wow factor.
For example, Warren Buffett, Bill Gates or Tiger Woods have found their wow factors. If they wish, they can stop working for the rest of their lives. They still continue working because it’s no longer work to them. They are having too much fun in the process. Making money is not the primary motivator for them. Being the best in what they do and being able to do what they love is what drives them.

When it comes to property investments, it’s also important to find out your ‘Why’ and ultimately your ‘Wow’. Many people invest in properties for a variety of reasons. Many do so to develop passive income, enjoy capital appreciation, to achieve financial independence and ultimately freedom so that they can quit their jobs, spend more time with their families and so on. On a more personal level, I met someone in Penang who told me that he bought his first zero-money-down property after reading my book. He even bought another copy of my book so that he could have my autograph on it! For me, that was my wow factor.