The Mad Hatter Business Plan

The other night we enjoyed The Late Show, the 1977 movie starring Lily Tomlin, Art Carney and Bill Macy.

Bill Macy plays Charles Hatter, a down-on-his-luck entrepreneur.  We first meet him leaving his office, and catch the following glorious screen shot:

Five businesses all named after himself, all with the same address but various specialties?  I love it.  Hey, if you have a skill, why not make a business out of it on the off chance you succeed?

He reminds me of me. Had Charles Hatter hired me as a marketing consultant, though, I would have told him that if he wanted to list all his various enterprises in the lobby directory, he should definitely not name them all after himself.  Each business should have its own unique vibrant identity so that they seemingly stand on their own.  Naming them all after himself sends an almost desperate message–hire me to do anything!  I can do anything! Continue Reading

Lushes in Love

Over the course of last year Will and I began experimenting and really appreciating how good a cocktail can be. Before then, we had basically subsisted on scotch on ice, beer, and gin and vodka tonics. And food, of course.

All of a sudden our eyes were opened to a whole new world of drinks! Will began to play with different ingredients and soon had invented his first custom cocktail, the Santa Rosa. And he sure has the touch. Even without booze, he can whip up a great drink. He makes awesome sodas during the day out of some combination of soda water, grenadine or simple syrup and various types of bitters. Yum! Continue Reading


I had this idea a couple years ago when Evite first started getting annoying. Is it still annoying? I haven’t used it in years but I remember it being exceedingly frustrating to use.

My idea was for an event invitation site called Enter your event details and guest list (no need for email addresses!) and POOF! ESPVITE would invite your guests via ESP.

ESP, or extrasensory perception, you remember, is the act of receiving information not through physical senses but through your mind. Continue Reading

2011 Priorities

My January first came with an awesome sense of renewal. I was surprised because I have spent hours convincing myself that the year end is purely arbitrary and that I should treat every day as a fresh start (if one is needed). But I can’t deny the freshness I felt on January 1st and the hope that this year would hold even more awesomeness than those previous.

I am someone who has a lot of projects. I asked a new friend at a party over the holidays, “What are you constantly obsessed with?” Julia pointed out that that is a weird question. Other people may not have constant obsessions, projects dominating their brain. I have to wonder how that feels. Maybe a little calmer. Continue Reading

Talk of the Town

As a small business owner, I am honored to receive email sales pitches for advertising placement, marketing and promotion help, and, in this case, the “Talk of the Town 2010 Plaque of Honor for Excellence in Customer Satisfaction.”

As someone perpetually obsessed with both get rich quick and get rich slow schemes, one of my favorite activities is getting to the bottom of what’s in it for these services.

“Talk of the Town” would have you believe that they evaluate all businesses and that yours came out on top.  They interviewed my customers and they love me.  The first time I received one of their emails, I was honored.

When you click through from the emails, you find that to showcase this honor, you need to shell out at least $195.  An award you pay for?  What a deal!

I especially enjoy this quote from their website:

What does the recognition mean to me and my business?
To a business it means everything. It reflects your customer’s opinion of your business and drives new business referrals. You can leverage this award to thank customers, staff and returning and new business development.

In other words, this recognition means nothing, but we’re really good at stringing fluffy sounding words together so that you feel good about what you do and want to give us money.

The funniest part to me is that someone took the time to put this elaborate scheme together.  I have nothing but the most profound respect for what motivates con men, but am continually bewildered by their constant dismissal of whatever moral compass they have inside.

They do look like nice plaques, though. Maybe I’ll ask for mine for Christmas.

On Andy Warhol, Art and Business

I’ve been thinking a lot about Andy Warhol lately. He’s an artist I have a lot of respect for because he was so financially successful in his lifetime. And he got to have an awesome warehouse space filled with rad musicians and other artists.

When I win the lottery, the first thing I’m going to do is take a month-long European vacation. The next thing I’m going to do is rent a warehouse space and deck it out. I probably won’t paint it silver, but I promise, I will paint it. It will be the best few weeks ever. Then all day, every day, I will create–movies, paintings, sculpture–whatever strikes my fancy. I’ll invite other artists to share the space; rent out the film studio to artists for rock bottom prices. I’ll immediately take up neon sign making, an interest I’ve always had to forgo pursuing due to cost. Continue Reading

My Theme Song

I realized last week what my dream is. I’ve been planning all these crazy videos for so long, and pumping so much time and energy into my blog… but I didn’t understand how it all comes together to make me happy. Honestly, sometimes it just feels like a bunch of work. But this past week when I have actually been devoting myself to my videos, I have felt continually creatively satisfied. It has been an amazing week.

Sometime during the past week, I made the realization: I want to be a talk show host. I was born to be a talk show host. I can talk and talk and talk. Believe me! I can think of crazy skits like nobody’s business. Content will never be a problem!

I do need to work on my deadpan…I crack myself up entirely too much! Continue Reading

At least I got an A- on my math test.

Steve didn’t ask me out last Friday! Nor did I find out who won the story contest. At least I got an A- on my math test. Should I give up on the fact that Steve might ask me out? He doesn’t see me at all during school. Before and after school are even worse. I have to rush to Carol and he plays basketball til the bell. Maybe he didn’t like me till Oudoor Ed. Maybe he doesn’t like me at all! I really do not know. On Friday Becky was really nice. Alex too. Becky bought lunch. Only have five more bookworms.

Tomorrow I have to find out who won the short story contest. I have great faith in The Famous Feline, but I don’t have much self-confidence.

My first ever get rich quick scheme was Crochet 'R' Us, a store devoted to selling chroceted bookworm bookmarks.  Back then they had little pipe cleaner antennae and googly eyes.  Think I should take it up again?

Tomorrow I have to find out who won the short story contest. I have great faith in The Famous Feline, but I don’t have much self-confidence. Gotta go chrochet.


Obsessed with cats from a young age, The Famous Feline was a story I wrote for a district-wide 5th grade short story writing contest about a talking cat who wants to get into show business (if memory serves…). I have this horrible memory of the teacher reading all the stores aloud so that everyone could vote. I must have been beet red I was so terribly embarassed. It isn’t ever covered in my upcoming diary entries, but mine was one of three stories to be entered into the competition, though I do not believe I won.