Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Harvesters' food stamp challenge

Harvesters, one of Kansas City's most relevant and impacting organizations, has launched a heckuva campaign to raise awareness for the stresses that come with living on food stamps. The Food Stamp Challenge is a powerful way to put yourself in the shoes of those who live and eat in a way that's unfamiliar to many of us. The challenge is a nice call to action during Hunger Awareness Week.

The Kansas City Star has a great story on the challenge today. Check it out, get inspired, join the challenge.

Monday, May 28, 2007

What I did on my day off

  • slept in and woke up. had some white tea and cereal.
  • rode the same Mission Road route I did yesterday...good hills, lots of angry white suburbanites to curse your sharing of their road.
  • went to Latte Land, where I caught up on some magazines.
  • sat next to Brush Creek and did some inventory of where I am and where I'd like to be. lots of people had this idea (maybe not an inventory, but being near Brush Creek) so I left.
  • hit up the Sun Fresh for groceries. spent way too much $$ and time.
  • headed into work for a couple hours of prep for a meeting tomorrow - thumbs down, but necessary to my peace of mind.
  • went to a friends' house and fed/watered/litterboxed her cats. i'm not a cat person.
  • mowed and gave the doggers a bath. i actually mowed a weird squiggly thing into my backyard. pretty sweet.
  • my dinner date just arrived and i need to finish the fare. marinaded chicken, mozzerella and tomato salad with basil, grilled asparagus and some blueberry/banana goodness for dessert.
  • time to sit the rest of the long weekend out...on my my squiggly-mowed backyard.

Listening to Beautiful Girls - Learn Yourself.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Hi, I'm balance, have we met?

Those of us in the ad world know that balance is at times a four letter word and at times, the holy grail. from my boyz at American Copywriter, Tug writes on Mark Fenske's trip to the ballpark. (note: check our new blog design. courtesy of sethy g.)

Excerpt from Mark's post:

The first day of baseball season is a good time to remember how lucky we are to work in the business of advertising.
We can take the afternoon off and go to the game.

Is the world going to miss one afternoon's worth of advertising?
Will anyone be able to tell if you withheld an afternoon's worth of effort from a campaign?

However, leaving work to go to a baseball game will make a difference inside you.
Leaving work to go to a baseball game opens something inside your heart that advertising has been doing its best to lock up.
The quest for award-winning work keeps you at work late.
The struggle to do better than those around you makes you work through dinner, get up early, cancel the vacation you planned.
There are times these sacrifices bear fruit.
Mostly they don't.
Because greatness at writing ads comes only partly from how hard you work at reaching inside yourself.
A greater deal of it has to do with being a person worth reaching into.
Leaving work to go to a baseball game is a sign you have taken charge of your life.
It's a sign you accept death is coming and have chosen what to do about it for today.
It will do you no good to learn to write from your heart if you have nothing in your heart.
I was slow to learn this.
Here's hoping you won't be.

Can I get a what what, or an amen? Give it to me. What a post. This has been a crazy-busy week in the world of Woolard. Crunch time for a great client. Chopping block for ideas. Pitted out shirts and a lack of sleep for me. But here's the sick/wonderful thing: I'm freakin' thrilled with what this week has produced. We have places to go still, sure. But it's nice when the sweat equals something you can be proud of.

Do I drive home late at night, look my Labrador in the eyes and wonder why I do what I do? Sure. Sometimes. But I also know that his Equine-sized bag of food takes money to buy and I'm happy to make that money doing what I do.

Here's to advertising. Here's to bags under the eyes. Here's to taking on a few hours of sleep knowing you created something. Cheers, Mark.

Listening to: My bar-b-que chicken sizzle on the grill.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

More on inspiration

just got back from a quick drive to the bank. it's a beautiful day to be in Kansas City. weather's perfect, construction crews are busily building the future skyline and in the neighborhood where I work, advertising types are grabbing lunch at various little joints in the crossroads. inspirational? Surely.

so is this article, from one of my new favorite web-places, behance. what rules will you break today?

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

On inspiration

my head is full. and that's a good thing. the past week has been filled with inspiration. let's share.

from the good-old American Copywriter blog, Tug helps us improve our creative lives. print this out, keep it at your desk, use it as a guide or roll it up and smack your co-workers over the head if they breach the suggestions...then let them read it.

i saw Barack Obama speak on saturday. wow. i was pleased on so many levels. as an american, i saw a hope and energy i haven't seen. ever. as a marketer, i saw someone who was unbelievably confident in his own (brand) essence and communicate his differentiating attributes convincingly. he was authentic. he was not John Edwards-ized. obama was eloquent and passionate and delivered a message of hope and change, which darn it, we need to have right now. the crowd was rock-star-struck. and i left feeling audaciously hopeful.

went to my local outdoor store, backwoods, last night for a clinic/presentation on adventure travel and the store-led trips internationally and state-side. it was refreshing to be among a group of people who value travel, pushing comfort zones and pushing physical limits. and just watching the slides of past trips made me crave the travel that for some reason i've lost in my life. i was blessed to travel a ton as a youngster and throughout college...but it's been far too long since i was lost in a foreign city, or packed up the Jetta for a weekend trip. i need to correct this soon. check out the backwoods trips - great deals, amazing accommodations and adventures, and knowledgeable guides.

listening to - sky blue sky, wilco (been waiting for this one...downloaded today. so good.)

Friday, May 11, 2007

Calling all inventors, entrepreneurs, biz people

Check this out. Got me super excited. Via Tango (who I'd love to have in a pitch). Dragons' Den would be something I'd watch. If you're an inventor, entrepreneur, marketer, you should find value in this idea and example.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Long blog

i'm feeling a little lame with WoolardSpeak lately. sorry. i think i'm going through one of those "what does it all mean?" "why should i blog?" "why didn't I just pay for typepad" things. maybe i'm having a quarter-blog crisis. no, i'm just busy.

so, one way i like to get back in the blog saddle is by throwing some of my diversions out there in the hope that i get a pass for doing other things with my free time than blogging. geek.

1) Music: Feist, Bright Eyes, Deep Dish, Jose Gonzales. and I'm writing a ton. had a dead period...but am back on the "i write 3/4 of a song, get frustrated, have a beer, and start a new one" phase.
2) Words: Good Magazine (no time to read!)
3) Web: No One Belongs Here More Than You, 43 Things, Good Magazine on YouTube
4) Movies: i watched two of my all-time (top 5) favorite movies this week: High Fidelity and Serendipity. They both have two things in common: John Cusack and brilliant screen writing. it's rare for me to watch a movie. let alone two in one week.

weekend's almost here. happy end of the week. i'll jump back with real content soon.

Listening to - Feist, the reminder (been in my car all darn week)

Thursday, May 03, 2007

The Napkin Fiction Project

god bless esquire for giving the short-attention spanned, like me, a wonderful feature. The Napkin Fiction Project is esquire's (always great fiction featured) latest storytelling project. the magazine sent cocktail napkins to a bunch of authors and asked them to send a story in return - on the napkin.

the stories are, understandably, brief. but they are, in their brevity, brilliant. and again, my attention span is loving the bursts of inspiration.

check them out for a break in your day, or to re-start your creative thoughts.

listening to - jose gonzales, veneer