Call someone instead of texting or posting on facebook
Lend someone a book
Day 27: Introduce two people who don’t know each other
On Sunday we were meeting my aunt and family for brunch at a restaurant called Matchbox in Columbia Heights (DC). I’ve found over the years that much communication is misinterpreted via text message when it comes to my family, so I tend to make sure to call in as many instances as possible. Brunch planning was no exception. I’m sure I could have taken this challenge to a new place by going outside my comfort zone, but I find that in my current job I’m having to call people all the time and that’s something I’ve never really gotten comfortable with, but am getting there.
Day 26 would actually be a huge challenge for me. I think the only person I’ve lent books to in the last few years lives in the same house as me now, so I know I’ll see them again. I always had a problem when lending books, in that lending would always turn into giving. I don’t know why, but I’m kind of territorial about all my media: records, books, posters, dvds, etc. So I flipped this challenge around and made it into a challenge to finish the book Daniel had lent me for our trip. He finished almost 3 while we were traveling, and that motivated me to at least finish one.
He lent me The New York Regional Mormon Singles Dance by Elna Baker, and up until Monday, it’d been cracking me up with every page turn. I didn’t complete my challenge until the plane ride on Tuesday, but I was proud of myself. It’s a great read. If you’re in a rut, reading all kinds of drab non-fiction or historical prose, this could really break that spell for you. I highly recommend it. Elna is a gem.
As I just mentioned, on the 27th I was flying around in airplanes and at the Denver Airport all day. Needless to say, no introductions were made. I will attempt to make this happen over the next few days, which shouldn’t be hard since FUSE fest is coming up this Friday and Saturday.
Thank an old teacher
Go to a neighborhood business you’ve never been to
Thanking a teacher was something I was waiting to see on the challenge list. I’d read that in the description on the very first day and knew that would be something I’d love to do, and quite honestly should have done already. I decided to email Chris Ransom, a professor I had a Kent State my second semester as a Visual Communication Design major. His background in photography was very inspiring to me, and actually was one of the reasons why I looked into the possibility of double majoring, which lead to a school transfer the summer following my freshman year. I emailed and let him know he was one of the best teachers I had in my undergraduate career, and that I still have (and cherish) the two red tacks he gave me when I took his class. Red tacks from Chris Ransom were highly sought after accolades in the VCD program, and I have TWO.
Going to a neighborhood business I’d never been to was pretty easy, considering I was in a city I had only spent limited time in. Saturday my family was arriving from Ohio and Daniel and I went to meet them in Alexandria, Virgina. It was only a short metro ride to the station where we met up and proceeded toward a tiny diner I’d found on yelp called Jack’s Place. By tiny, I mean impossibly small. There was enough room for approximately 12 people to dine comfortably. Luckily another group was leaving when we arrived so there was enough room for our party of 5. We had a pretty awesome diner experience, if you ask me, having another customer pass us our plates when our orders were up and a regular pointing out the coffee creamer to us. Probably not a place my family would have chosen, but I felt like we were actually experiencing the community we were visiting, so I was very happy with my choice of breakfast place. Be warned, however: it’s cash only.
Leave a positive comment on a strangers blogDay 22: Ask for someone’s advice and take it
Day 21 took place on a little website called North Coast Zeitgeist. A guy named Joseph posts regularly to this site, and I’ve gotten to know him a little bit via twitter. He has a lot to say and I appreciate his work and inspirations equally. I let him know this by commenting on a recent post he made about a project by Nicole Meyer. I don’t know if he’s really necessarily a stranger, but I know we haven’t met in real life or ever had a conversation of more than 140-character back-and-forths taking place in the twittersphere.
Day 22 was today. I don’t usually update on these challenges day-of, but today was a bit different. When I finally looked to see what today’s challenge was, it almost made me laugh out loud. Today I took a trip to NPR to meet some of the people who work in the Digital Media Department, as well as the Communications (design) Department. I sat and talked with the Senior Interactive Designers for awhile and they were very friendly and eager to give me feedback on my questions. Both Max & Ben encouraged me to keep pursing things that I feel are important and to try and get within proximity to the jobs I would aspire to be working on. For example: try to be someone’s assistant or at least work on the same floor as the person who is doing work you would like to be doing. I am now in the process of rounding out my resume to apply for jobs that would be that exact scenario. It’s very exciting and I’m so happy I was able to make this kind of thing a part of my trip to DC.
I’m always happy to listen to the advice of friends and family, but when it’s coming from someone who does things that you appreciate as a consumer on an almost daily basis, it’s just so much more validating. I feel like I now know better what steps I need to take to have the kind of career I want for the long-term. It’s exciting, though it may be a few years off. It’s nice to have a road map, but even nicer to have a road map verified by the Rand McNally of the business. A special thanks to Alyson, Ben, Max, Betsy and Jennifer. (Should any of them ever see this, I very much appreciate all the time you took out of your day to talk with me and hope I will get to see you all again.)
Day 18: Cook Dinner for Someone
Send a friend 3 links they’ll loveDay 20: Give 3 Compliments
Day 18 didn’t really work out as planned. We were working on packing for our trip to DC at that point and I was hoping to make dinner for Daniel and I as well as a few friends to really make it an event. Perhaps the opportunity will come up when we return. I’m hoping to make diner for our friend Shannon who is watching our house for us while we’re gone.
Day 19 was really fun for me. I decided to send my former roommate some links because she’s working on her masters degree and I know she gets busy with school work. I also know she loves puppies, cupcakes and modern/installation art. I found her a link to adorable puppies, a link to specialty cupcake recipes and a link to one of my favorite art blogs. I really enjoyed giving her new options for procrastination (which is sometimes necessary and healthy) during her really hectic academic endeavor.
Day 20 ended up involving Jason and Cat, who we are staying with while in DC. I mostly made compliments about trivial things like their couch, Jason’s cool new shoes and Cat’s choice of blankets. They are wonderful and I am so glad we get to spend a week hanging out with them. It’s also Jason’s birthday today, and he’s one of my favorites, so you should probably go look at his blog and follow him.