Tuesday, January 28, 2014

A fish out of water...

C: Have a good Day 2 tomorrow.
Me: Thanks.
C: Try not to terrify those tech nerds.
Me: I don't terrify anybody.
C: Yes, you do.

Yesterday was my first day at my new gig. To be honest, it felt like college all over again. Except unlike college, I cared very little about taking notes. I was also the old kid in class. And I was very familiar with how to bend rules.

Kid: You got a PC? I didn't know that was an option.
Me: It wasn't. I wrote in the comment box that I wanted a PC.
Kid: Is that okay?
Me: I learned at an early age that you should get what you want.

I was in a room full of freshly graduated software programmers and engineers. They were all toting around these TimBuk2 satchels and wearing fleece vests - which apparently is the uniform for geeks. I brought my LV bag because I was trying to be more conservative, but that backfired pretty quickly. 

Teacher: Does anyone have any questions?
Me: I can't connect to the wireless internet.
Seatmate: Did you click on the wireless switch?
Me: Do I have a "retard" sticker on my forehead?
 SM: Did you click on anything?
Me: This is not a user error. Your questions are offensive.

I had my computer confiscated only a few hours after I received it. Let's just leave it at that. The point is, I didn't have a computer.

Me: I need a computer.
Tech: Which one do you have now?
Me: I don't have one.
Tech: Okay, which one do you want?
Me: What is the sexiest PC you have available?
Tech: Hmm... the X1 Carbon, but people don't normally get those.
Me: That's the one I want.

I convinced the Tech guy to add an "extremely urgent" sticker on my purchase order so hopefully I'll get my new toy today. I also figured out how to order my own stuff. Despite the constant slew of confirmation emails, something tells me that I'm not following normal protocol. Let's see how many of the tablets I just ordered actually arrive.

Teacher: Click on additional skills you'd like to build.
Me: What are some examples?
Teacher: The page will show you some that cater to your needs.
Me: Mine says, "Diversity Awareness."
Seatmate: Mine doesn't.
Me: My page is being an asshole. I have great diversity awareness.
SM: Maybe you should add "Self Awareness."
Me: Maybe you should add "Ability to keep your opinion to yourself."

I also have to say that I've impressed myself with my abilities to be social over the past two days by trekking my ass to SF at night... though at this point, I'm pretty sure my seatmate is tired of waking me up every ten minutes. It just solidified the fact that living in SF is the right choice for me. Special thanks to Willis for responding to be desperate cries for help.

Still alive and moving the rest of the way to the Bay in 30 days! Congratulate me.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Everything comes to an end...

This was my farewell email to my colleagues. Who says I'm not sentimental?

I was going to write this heartfelt message that talked about how much I learned at McK and how I will always treasure these past years as some of the most spectacular in my life...

... but I read an article on Buzzfeed on how no one wants to hear that stuff.

Instead, I'll say this.

The past 2.5 years were some of the hardest in my career. I was physically sick much of the time and fell asleep curled up in a ball at so many airport gates to the point where the ding of the boarding signal is like a dog whistle to me now. I ordered way too much for dinner, and learned how to scarf down an entire sandwich in 5 minutes at my desk. I also became so severely addicted to coffee that I almost had to go to rehab, except my team kept insisting coffee was a good kind of bad habit. I spent way too much time talking to my SPG ambassador, and used the phrase "but I'm not just Platinum... I'm ultra Platinum" way too many times. And I was given nicknames that included "Slide Ninja" and "The Tiger" in reference to my abilities to shame new BAs who I insisted should be better at using PowerPoint given how it's dinosaur technology compared to the apps they should've coded themselves in college.

But despite all that pain, agony, and palm-to-face nights waiting at Kinko's for our workshop booklets to print, I can admit without a doubt that I love the Firm. And I'm thankful to have been given the opportunity to learn from the smartest people I have ever worked with in my life.

If I'm lucky, I will have the pleasure of working with you again in the future...

Special thanks to N. K. and P. R. for giving me honest advice and for helping me become a better person.

Till next time,


Sunday, January 5, 2014

Worth the effort

The other night, I babysat my nephews while my sister and brother-in-law went on a date. Occasionally, I witness the life my sister lives, and I feel this urge to help. And oddly enough, I thought helping was to remind her of what an awesome person she is to hang out with, and the reason my brother-in-law is lucky to have her.

Sis: Dinner was so much fun!
Me: I'm so glad!
Sis: [30 minute description of dinner]
Me: Oh good, you tried all the good stuff.

Next morning...

Sis: Dinner was so much fun!

Next afternoon...

Sis: Dinner was so much fun!

That's when I knew that she really must've had fun.

I have this unwavering belief that every relationship requires effort. I'm not talking about the relationship my sister has with her husband. That's beyond my juridiction. No. I'm talking about the relationship I have with my sister.

As the saying goes, every person has a different way of showing love. Words. Actions. Whatever else is in that book.

But the way I show love is to adapt to how that person receives it.

For my sister, the way to show her that I love her is to think from her point of view, recognize what she would appreciate, and do those things without her having to ask. And lucky for me, I can do this fairly easily, mostly because I've known her for 30 years.

I think my sister misses the person she was before kids. Not that she doesn't love her kids, I've never seen another human love her kids as much as she loves hers. But before she had kids, my sister was a fun-loving, outgoing LA girl who tried the best restaurants and had great adventures with her husband. But two kids, a full-time job, a mortgage, and endless responsibilities can take its toll.

I just wanted to remind her that she's still that girl. And that girl came home from dinner on Friday night.

As 2014 moves forward, I am continuing to add new goals to my list. One of those goals is to show those around me that I love them, to invest in the relationships I have with my family and friends. And to take the time to learn how that person receives love. Because honestly, it's worth it.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2014: to be a better version of 2013

I was spoiled by 2013.

I finally got my shit together with work. I shared amazing new experiences with my equally amazing friends. I made great new friends and built promising relationships with them. My family is healthy, happy, and very close. And after the turbulence that 2012 left me in, I found inner peace and a rhythm in life that made me feel very comfortable.

Not to mention all the Gucci, Chanel, Louboutin, and Hermes. But we all know that all that shit is just frosting.

As the confetti fell abundantly all over the carpet in our quaint Little Tokyo apartment last night, I started to reflect on my expectations and goals for 2014.

A risky business.

I was always one of the doubting Thomases when it came to expectations. Why set yourself up for disappointment?

But I think the key is to surround yourself with the right people, and most importantly, to have the right perspective and attitude.

One of the key things that I learned from the Firm is that the minute you're too comfortable, you're no longer developing and challenging yourself. Therefore, you should always feel slightly scared, slightly unfamiliar, and eager to learn more. Only then will you become a better version of yourself.

So 2014 starts with one of the most surprising decisions that has shocked many of my closest friends and family.

I am moving to San Francisco.

I have no idea what this adventure will bring - how I will adapt, the people I will meet, the life I will assume. But not knowing is the best part.

The attitude I have going into 2014 is absolute positivity. I will embrace all things with an open mind. I will do my best to always look on the bright side of things, to assume the good in people, and be a kinder, warmer person to those around me. And in the process, I hope to try new things, explore countries I've never been to before, and learn my ass off.

I know that some people may think that I'm this aggressively caustic person who uses the F-word too much (true, I do use the F-word too much). But if you get to know me, I'm actually extremely soft. And though I used to think it was a weakness to let this side out, I find that it makes me happier to show people that I have feelings and that I give a shit about you.

I have no idea what 2014 will bring, but I'm dedicated to making everyday count for something.