25 September, 2009

Good Week To You

Living in a big city filled with a broad spectrum of race, nationality and religion, I have come to discover that there is an incredibly large assortment of religious holidays that a large portion of us are missing out on. What am I getting at?
Befriend a Jew.
Not only are these some of the kindest, friendliest people I have ever met, but they have myriad religious holidays that stand to liven up the lives of many in this boring and often empty feeling world in which we live.
Yom Kippur is the holiest day in the Jewish calendar. It falls on the 10th day of the Jewish New Year and is a day of absolute fasting and declaration of repentance. It means "Day of Covering" (i.e. sins are covered) but is usually translated as "Day of Atonement".
The "10th day of the Jewish New Year" is on the 28th of this month; that's Monday of next week. So if you missed Rosh Hashanah last Saturday then you've got the weekend to gear up for Yom Kippur. Now, admittedly the words "absolute fasting" and "declaration of repentance" are big scary words for some of us out there. But who of us couldn't use some absolution of sin?
So check it out. Jewish culture and religion goes way back and is deeply seeded in the history of this world of ours. But if somehow that's not intriguing enough for you, fire of some of these probably not-so-appropriate ecards to make you feel included in this large and exciting Jewish holiday. Or better still, check out Matisyahu's new song, One Day. If this Hasidic Jew/hip hop reggae star doesn't give you chills that chatter your teeth, then you have no soul.
So just do it. Cause really, what else have you got going this weekend?

21 September, 2009

International Speak Like A Pirate Day

International Speak Like A Pirate Day was this weekend--another one of those awesome and entertaining holidays that passes me by with nothing more than a simple wink and a nod. As a non-consumer of alcohol and one not typically associated with the plundering and ravaging of easy, drunken women, I found myself at home watching a movie to celebrate this scallywag of a holiday.

From my crows-nest perch on the 4th floor, I had a stellar "land ahoy" view of the bar scene down below and the debauchery that goes with all things pirate. Drunkenness, vomiting, getting kicked out of bars, falling in the street, falling out of a cab into the street, hugging strangers, getting groped on the butt by the stranger you are hugging, flashing some serious leg to get a cab and then some more vomiting for good-pirate measure.

It was a celebration if I ever saw one. Strangely enough though, no one was dressed up as a pirate.

18 September, 2009

Death As A Metaphor

I saw a dead pigeon today, laying on its back in the middle of Michigan Ave. in downtown Chicago. It was on the crosswalk of Michigan Avenue's major intersection with Lake Street. Hundreds, nay thousands, must have walked by that dying bird wondering what happened.
As I briskly walked past, trying to keep up with Olympic-caliber walking speed of my fellow Chicagoans, I saw his one protruding leg kick out a few times in essence saying, "FML, why me?"
I wanted to kick him to safety but quickly decided against it, figuring others would misinterpret my actions as some kind of belated abuse for some deep, painful hatred I have toward birds. There are people like that out there. Sick people. So rather than doing the right thing, the seemingly humane thing of clearing his body off of a 6 lane highway intersection, I just walked by. I walked on with the pathetic memory of his one, probably unbroken leg, kicking in vain as he slipped into birdy hell.

Hell you ask? Why sure, it's a pigeon. Pigeons are Satan's birthed step-children here on earth. If Satan roamed the earth, surely he too would eat garbage and crap on people. Both a friend and an enemy to human kind, his pigeons play charismatically in Marry Poppins and as the puppets of sick destruction in Hitchcock's The Birds. It's that duality that makes pigeons so beautiful and yet so terribly disgusting.

So Mr. Pigeon, if I meet you in hell, I beg ye forgive me. The consideration was there and I did want to help you. But because you eat garbage and I didn't want to be jailed on gross animal cruelty charges, I left you were you lied. I hope the next taxi that hit you, who surely ran you over and crushed you after the light turned green, was going fast and made the job quick and dirty. Farewell my friend and good luck.

17 September, 2009

Blame It On The Cheese

I was invited to a private short film screening last night, followed by an offering of some of the finest snack foods I have ever laid my mouth on. From what I understand, it was a short film shot in conjunction with a campaign that Leo Burnett is doing. The fact that the fifteen-minute film is about a boy who [DELETED FOR POTENTIALLY NEGATIVE LEGAL REPROCUSSIONS I CERTAINLY CANNOT AFFORD] (long story, and not as twisted as you think) is irrelevant. What is relevant is the consortium of fine cheeses, meats, crackers, hummus and fresh fruit I dashed out of the theatre for.

Do you remember back in grade school when the lunch bell would ring and everyone would come flying out of their classrooms and make a mad dash for the lunchroom in hopes of beating the long lines and getting first dibs on the selection of items that tended to run out fast? Yeah well this was nothing like that. If you haven't noticed, I'm an adult now. A big, big adult. With a grownup style beard. So I mozied my way in there, pretending not to care about how beautiful and delicious the food looked. I must have looked like a lion in a meat locker though. You just cant hide the primal hunger of a fat person. It's our nature. But no one got hurt. There was plenty of food to go around. And besides, everyone who was anyone that was thin enough and cool enough to walk around in skinny jeans (male or female) was hitting up the wellspring of free wine and beer. And it was all classy-like, meaning the servers poured your wine for you and everything was on ice. Tres chic mon frere. Tres chic.

So that was pretty hip for me. I felt like I was on an episode of The Hills. Very hip indeed. After the short, snack-filled evening of rubbing shoulders with fellow advertising socialites of greater importance than me, there was really only one thing left to do: go home and watch over three hours of Flight of The Conchords while laying in bed before falling asleep for an hour at 11 and then waking up to realize you've missed three calls from your pregnant and recently unemployed wife who lives in your parents basement back in Utah.
And in that strangerly awkward wrap up to my evening...I wrapped up my evening. I walked out in the hall to chat with the Mrs. who was just leaving work at 11pm Utah time and told her how much I love and miss her. You never quite realize how good of a team you make until you're forced to be away for a bit. Kristen, you're the bomb (you kids still say that right? The bomb?)

16 September, 2009

If You Don't Have Friends, Pretend

My first project at my internship is complete. I toiled and pondered and scratched heads with the best of them here at Cramer Krasselt, and in the end, our efforts ended up looking pretty dang sexy if you ask me.
Thanks to Lauren Fontinel for channeling Warhol in this eye catching colorfest and tolerating my constant and unwelcomed cubicle pop-ins to ask questions.
Props to Emily Sander for steering use in the right direction with design and copy. I was feeling pretty good about my copy until I remembered it had been your idea all along. That was a sad moment. But you are the pro.
And one final shout out to Ari who kindly chose not to respond when I asked rhetorically if we were friends.
Today, it was a good day.

15 September, 2009

Me And The Chicago

The "corn cob" apartment buildings.
View from Leo Burnett offices down the river.
Michigan Ave. walking back to the train.
My office and red-canopy entrance.

So you're probably like, "Man, I come into work/school/my office every single day and wonder what is going on with Logan M. Tanner, but he never blogs anymore. This is what the world must have felt like when Shakespeare died; empty and alone."

I get it. I really do. I'm like that corner shop you used to go to every day to get a donut/coffee/candy bar/penny candy; you can live without me, but you're used to me. You might not like it, but I'm convenient. Like the store, I was the only thing around when the day got long, a meeting ran short, or you had wireless on your phone in the bathroom and a bad case of post-Thai diarrhea. Sometimes, when there was nothing else around, you directed your browser to me.

Well things have changed. Me wife is pregs. 6+ months in fact. I'm hundreds of miles away living in Chicago with a couple of Mexicans (their words not mine.) We have almost no wireless connectivity, for SURE no A/C and a splendid fourth floor view of the Walgreen's rooftop and a stereophonic soundtrack of the street activity below.

I'm hot. I'm sweaty. I'm not sleeping well. I miss my wife and I'm in a foreign city. My CTA travel card is the most valuable possession I own; my iPod Nano and Touch are my new best friends (sorry Mexicans) and my feet have corns on them so big, I refer to them as "cobs".

But its not all doom an gloom. In fact, not at all. When I'm not outside or in my apartment or talking to a senior employee, I'm not sweating... as much. That's a plus. I'm in one of the most beautiful cities in the world, living with two great guys in a posh part of town just over a mile from work. My work is downtown-charlie-brown if there ever was; right on Michigan Ave. by Millennium Park and a couple blocks from the lake front. My job is awesome. The people are really cool and friendly. And when I'm not getting lost looking for the bathroom or the exit, I'm actually having a really great time! I'm drinking lots of water, watching no TV and eating about half as much food as I ever have in my whole life. Being manorexic has never been so easy.

Tonight, I'll walk home down the Magnificent Mile until I get to the lake, cut down past Oprah's house, cruise into the CVS or Walgreen's for some deodorant and then hit the inflatable sack...my air mattress.

Life is good in Chicago. Life is good.

10 September, 2009

Goodbye Labor Party

My last blog post was on July 27th huh? Wow, nothing like showing your writing prowess, timeliness and stick-to-it-iveness by not blogging for over a month. But it's ok, we'll get back on the horse here really soon.
Today feels like a blogging day. Probably because its my last official day of work at the job I have plugged away at for the last 4 years and 9 months. I've changed offices, I've changed chairs and the iMacs have grown up a bit since day one, but it's always been a good job. The fanfare on behalf of my departure has been unprecedented this afternoon. With all of this pomp and circumstance, I really don't know how I'm going to get anything done...