I sit here on my back patio today finally breaking down and writing a much overdue blog post.
For over a week now, I’ve been trying to write a fitting blog that memorializes the death of my farmer friend John. I’ve started it about 15 times and am unable to come to completion.
This year has been filled with death. I know of four people that have passed away since the beginning of the year. I hope that this isn’t going to be the trend of 2014. Not cool. Not cool.
This morning, my best friend Caren sent me a message that one of our former coworkers passed away. She articulates it well over HERE. Rodney was a cool dude. He taught me how to bust my ass with the least amount of energy expended. He taught me how to diplomatically delegate crap that I didn’t really want to do. He had a penchant for Newports and teeny Lithuanian women. He used to bust my balls about my current man of the minute, and I remember laughing with him when we would work the shitstorm of the Grand Luncheon Buffet together. Oh, GLB.
Life is short.
Life is precious.
Lately, I’ve been hyper focused on doing what means something to me, as opposed to doing what “looks” right or fits in the big plan. I don’t really have a big strategic life plan right now. I wake up, do what I need to do, play with my dogs, and do things that make my heart full. Selfish, quite possibly, but after 36 years, I realized that I need to define my own happiness, and not wait for a job, a man, or a random to hand it to me.
That being said, I’m still banking on winning the library so I can fully articulate my life of leisure.
This time last week, I had a nasty stomach bug. I originally thought it was food poisoning, but it ended up being a crappy (pun intended) virus transferred to me by one of my little buddies. 30 long hours later, I was feeling better.
Coming back north over the weekend, I started to feel my allergies, ergo, my sinuses start to feel ick.
Yesterday, I was coughing and really wanted to rip off my nose. You know, take care of the allergen issues once and for all.
This morning, I woke up without a voice, and I can’t believe I’m typing this, my stomach feels like it did last week.
Do I just bleach my house from top to bottom?
Could I just be slowly dying for Texas Seasonal Allergies?
PS- please, please, please don’t google “the plague.” You will see things you can never unsee.
But seriously, why can’t I get 100% better? Is there a plague in my house? I’m slowly starting to clean everything with Lysol. And bleach. Lotsa bleach. Bleaching my sheets right now. Soaking my bathroom in bleach. Lysoling all of the counter tops.
Is it possible that this is just in my head? That I really feel ok, but I’m just crazy? Is it possible that the medicine I take daily for allergies is just useless? Has my body rejected everything and is saying “screw you Kate, we give up?
My goal- take the mission critical phone call today at 10. Nap. Post for my clients. Nap. Optimize a few accounts. Nap. Last call at 4:30. Go to bed.
This morning, I woke up before God rose to have an interview with a company overseas. It was an interesting conversation, but unfortunately, the role isn’t suited to my background. They wanted a unicorn- someone incredibly highly analytical, a whiz with numbers AND the ability to manage the portfolio of their US clients. I was good with #1 and #3, but believe strongly that #2 might screw me. I am the one that is incapable of balancing my checkbook. It might still be a valid opportunity, but the risk is huge, and the math part scares me.
gerund or present participle: dabbling
immerse (one’s hands or feet) partially in water and move them around gently.
take part in an activity in a casual or superficial way.
“he dabbled in writing as a young man”
After this conversation, I started thinking about the fact that I have had a WIDE variety of jobs, and careers. Yes, I bucketed them separately. It wasn’t until I was 30 that I didn’t have two jobs at once. Here is a little secret about me- I love the F&B industry, but it pays like crap. I managed to keep a job in the F&B world until I started working in Digital Marketing- I was travelling too much to be able to keep up two working schedules. I’ve waited tables, bartended, prepped, worked in multiple pastry kitchens, as well as managed a restaurant, a bar, and worked as a “new restaurant trainer” for a rather well-known Casual Dining place. I’ve worked for 6 hotels over the years, and the hotel work is my favorite.
But, it pays like crap unless you are fast tracked to management.
I finally realized that I wasn’t going to hit my economic goals in F&B and dedicated myself full-time to Digital Marketing. Don’t get me wrong- I miss, miss, miss the dramady of working in the Hospitality Industry. I miss the camaraderie and the mind-blowing business, but I don’t miss the crap hours and the random money.
Since 1998, the following is a list of jobs that I’ve held down:
Marketing Assistant- Gourmet Food & Wine Shop. This job introduced me to a part-time gig as a personal assistant working for a few higher profile people. Don’t ever underestimate getting a call at 12am to go buy someone a canned ham. Seriously.
Registered Sales Assistant- Financial Brokerage. Yep, you read that right- in the midst of baking pastry at 4am, for 8 short months, I worked for a large, well known brokerage, as a sales assistant. HATED IT.
Night Audit- Hotel
Marketing Assistant- Insurance Company (RFP’s and Proposals)
Waited Tables * whilst being marketing assistant*
Transition to Technology- Account Manager/Marketing/slave to the CEO of a start-up company and then onwards.
Over the years, I’ve coordinated large events, small client meetings. I’ve juggled the needs of a frenetic CEO with managing relationships of contractors in Bangalore. I’ve built campaigns, baked bread, marketed a fertilizer company and wanted to blow my brains out listening to clients talk about how they are the smartest innovators of X ever. I’ve worked with amazing bosses, and ones that I would like to run over with a HUGE HUMMER on a narrow road. I’ve cleared dishes at a Mothers Day brunch that served 1000, and I write content about grass-fed and finished beef.
Believe it or not, there has been commonalities in everything I do- marketing and food. I’m either marketing something or making something, or some combination of the both.
I’ve learned A TON.
I’ve learned what to do.
I’ve learned what NOT to do.
I’ve been pushed to make 1200 flan in less than 3 hours.
I can assist in plating a dinner for 800 without making a peep.
I can shoot the shit with the chefs on the back dock as easily as I can speak to a room for marketing sales reps.
I’ve learned that I can’t swallow shit and say that it tastes delicious. I don’t have THAT particular corporate skill. If something is broken, I like to acknowledge that it’s effed and move on. I’ve never quite mastered the art of finessing to that point of corporate communication. I SUCK at playing the game. If someone is acting the fool, I’m most likely going to call them on it. If someone treats me or someone else like crap, unfortunately, I’m going to open my mouth and most likely get booted on my butt for it.
In my diverse path of dabbling, I’ve realized that I’m really good at working for people who are collaborators. I don’t do really well in the “dictatorship” environment. The minute you tell me “I’m your boss, you do what I say”, sadly, I’m out. I’ll go get canned ham in the middle of the night for an amazing singer because she said please, but I don’t take well to the other methodology of direction.
My point, what was my point? I’ve had a lot of jobs, I’ve built an interesting career. I’ve got skills, and I’ve brought things to the table. I can’t imagine being in the same role for 30 years, but for the life of me, I don’t know what I’m going to do next.
It occurred to me yesterday that I’m turning 37 this year.
37 sounds like a Godforsaken number. Ya, ya, I know the alternative is a big ole dirt nap, but let’s face it- nothing about the sound of 37 is sexy.
I was bemoaning this fact to my friend at lunch today while we were digging into our plates of green stuff. Healthy eating 2014 started 6 days late for us, but hell, we are doing it.
Back to 37. 37 sounds weird. Sounds old. Sounds odd. I really don’t like the way it makes me feel deep down in my stomach. It makes me feel…. OLD.
Snap out if it Grigal. Get over it. You are entering into your 37th year and you have the ability to do something with it. While I was driving home from healthy lunch, I decided I’m going to do 37 things this year that I’ve never done before. Of course, because I’m me, and I need to share, I decided to document them and then along the way, write about them.
Here is the list of 37 things I’m going to do in this, my 37th year.
1. Pick a color and finally paint my bedroom.
2. Take 37 Yoga classes
3. Do a 10K
4. Go to the top of the Stratosphere
5. Have a champagne picnic at a park.
6. Go to the dentist
7. Road trip to someplace I’ve never been before
8. Eat oysters by a body of water
9. Bottle feed a baby calf
10. Downsize my butt
11. See a concert outside
12. Plant a vegetable garden (and not kill it)
13. Start and finish a knitting project for me
14. Disconnect digitally for 72 hours (no cheating)
15. Gamble on an Indian Reservation
16. Make a new friend
17. Drink a cup of coffee in the French Quarter
18. Pay a big bill off
19. Go 24 hours without cursing once
20. Paint a picture
21. Visit a family member I’ve not seen in at least a year
22. Take a picture every day for a month
23. Go to the Drive-In movies
24. Go to a museum that I’ve not been to before
25. Paint the trim in my den. Scratch that- repaint the entire den, from top to bottom.
26. Spring and Fall Clean my house and get rid of stuff each time.
27. Go to four different churches
28. Ride my bike to downtown Arlington and have a drink.
29. Take a golf lesson
30. Volunteer out in the community at least 6 times.
31. Give blood (if I can)
32. Go 5 days without spending a dime on anything
33. Play Euchre
34. Ride a horse and/or a tractor
35. Throw a summer solstice party
36. Read 37 books that I’ve not read before
37. ____________________________________________________________ Open to suggestions.