Category Archives: frustrations

general life frustrations

Why the GOP is failing to run the government like a buisness

On the extended cut of The Daily Show last night was the interview with Senator Dick Durban (D Illinois) where him and Jon Stewart discussed the debacle that was the debt ceiling debates.

In that interview Senator Dick Durban (D Illinois) explained that he and some of his fellow senators from both parties had spent 16-18 months working on a composed solution to how we would not only cut spending but increase revenue. He explained by limiting the solution to only one or the other would significantly hurt one or the other.

Spending 16-18 months on a solution, and then disregarding because it didn’t fit into an ideology?? That is a large waste of money. I would understand if they spent 16-18 months on something and it turned out to be crap, but then the people who worked on the project would be fired as to not use up company resources frivolously.

I guess I just don’t understand how all the GOP can yell about running the government like a business and then waste the people’s time and money by throwing out 16-18 months of work.

Dear Gen-Yers….

I am not really sure if I am a Gen-Y or Millennial generation. To be honest I don’t really care, but I am a twenty something, have a twitter, flickr, vimeo, mySpace, Facebook, etc account, my own blog, an iPhone 3gs, a MacBook Pro, and like indie music (only until it becomes popular and then I pretend not to like it because it is popular but really just listen to it as a guilty pleasure). By these measures I am sure I am one of the two generations.

I came across a site 80millionstrong.org and recently read an article in the New York Times (the paper edition, I know paper “what’s that?”) about many college students are forced to live the summer with their parents because of the lack of internships. I have been graced with the good fortune of always having at least one job working for my father, and I understand the economy has tanked in the last year or so. What I find vexing about the 80millionstrong.org project is that Millenials are expecting the government to bail them out with legislation.

I remember stories from my parents who both worked 60hrs a week while they were raising me and my Father was going to college. These stories are what I live my life by, working hard and doing things that just need to be done. I think most of us think today that all we need to to is go to high school, then go to college, then we will be able to land a good job, all the while in our educational journey doing as many internships and extra curricular activities as possible. I have always disagreed with this philosophy. Some of the best lessons I have had were not in an academic setting, I learned how to throw while delievering papers when I was 13, how to deal with the boss when working for my father, how to deal with stress line cooking on a $19,000 day at Buffalo Wild Wings, how to be humble shoveling pig shit for 6 months(not to mention a strong back). Don’t get me wrong, there is a lot to be learned from going to college but it is not a way to a job nor should it be. Just because you have a degree in something doesn’t mean that you are qualified for a position in that field. You may have a degree but if you have never spent the time to really understand your motivation, talents, craft then you didn’t get an education.

I started college in 2003 as a Mathematics major. I had no idea what Mathematics majors did after school, nor did I care, I just new that I loved the pursuit of a greater understanding of our world through Mathematics and I would deal with what I did after I graduated. For some reason or another I lost the passion for Mathematics in the spring of 2006, but I found another Ceramics. Hindsight being 20/20 I understand why, Ceramics allowed me to use the abstractness of higher Mathematics in a more qualitative way. All the way through college I was always asked the question, “So, what are you going to do with a Math/Art degree?”. Initially when I was younger my answer was, “I don’t know” as I got older (I didn’t get out of undergraduate until I was 23) my answer became, “Anything I want”. This change comes from the way I started looking at my time in college. My time wasn’t just sit in a classroom and memorize things then regurgitate, rinse, repeat. My time was connecting with people around me, learning from them, learning how to manage my life, learning how to learn new things. It was being able to connect with theses people, having a thirst for learning/knowledge, and working my ass off that enabled me to have two or three jobs throughout college and beyond.

I don’t currently have my dream job now that I am out of college. I am currently writing/maintaining software and doing customer support for This entry was posted in Being an Artist, frustrations and tagged , , , , , on by .

Twitter, Pizza Hut, Internship

pizzahut

I picked up email today and my father, Gerard McLean, with a link to a New York Times article talking about how there are hiring people to twitter for a summer internship. Naturally as a twenty something geny-er into this web 2.0 thingy I went to apply.

I visit pizzahut.com and find the apply link which brings me to an application form hosted by a company called Yum. I fill out the first part, which is the cover letters and resume. Next i move to a page for personal information, and I fill that out and hit the next button hoping to see a Thank You your application is received and then a screen following saying Pizza Hut is now following me on twitter, then a screen saying I have been hired and then seeing a tweet go out from Pizza Hut telling everyone I have been hired. Did I see that, No I saw the image to the left.

Now I understand errors happen in the internet world, but at least make you errors more descriptive. Don’t offer me a job as a intern who twitters; making me think that you are a really cool company who understands their brand and their target demographic, college age males (honestly who orders more pizza???), and then sweep the rug out from in front of me by not owning up to your service.

Lesson Learned, test test test then test some more, and if you do throw up an error don’t give me a number and tell me to refer to IT. In the words of Zach Galifianakis, “…Be more descriptive”.

**UPDATE*** I just received an email from Yum Jobs saying I have registered successfully. Confusing!?!?!?

(It may be working by the time I post this, but this was my experience)

Dilemmas of being an art student… taking a paid gig while you are still in undergrad

You get what you pay for

This letter came across via email at the Miami University Art department. What it literally says is that a woman is looking for a student from the art department, that was able to do a photography wedding gig. What I read was that the woman was looking for less expensive way of getting her wedding photographed, hoping that a student would want to do this for less because it would help the student by being able to put it on their resume.

I agree that it is very important for these opportunities come across for students, but this also brings up a gray area; when does someone become a professional artist??? I’m not sure that there is a clear cut definition for this, but for me it was when I wanted to become a professional artist. The day I wanted to become a professional artist was the day I decided to. Even-though I was still in undergrad, I decided that I wanted to be taken seriously as an artist. So I did.

There are many times in school where we feel like we are just practicing for the “real” thing when we graduate. The real thing is practicing, each piece is an exercise in how we express ourselves. Each piece, if we deem it so, is a professional piece. Along with this, I recently gave a lecture on Social Media and the artist for upcoming graduating art majors. Most of them didn’t have a site, which meant that they didn’t have a way of making them professionals. Am I saying that you need a website to be professional? No, not really, I am saying that as someone in undergrad it helps define you as a serious practitioner and allows you to open your audience to more than just the people in you temporal location.

At the end of the day, you are only a professional as you take yourself. If you know you do quality work, charge that much for it. It takes a long time for an artist to cultivate the skills they need in order to do what they do, and no one usually pays them to learn theses things. Keeping that in mind always charge what YOU are worth, not just the specific job at hand.

Crossing your t’s and dotting your i’s.

Miami University
I have recently tried to graduate from college. The only requirement I have left to fill is a US Cultures requirement for Gen Ed. I was never able to take this class, one because of miscommunication with my advisor of the time and two because I switched degrees halfway through. To solve this problem I looked through my unused classes and found a class based around the history of the American (US – remember this because it come back later) school system. So I submitted the petition pretty sure that I would be able to graduate, and waited for the letter in the mail over winter break.

Well the letter never came, not because they didn’t send the letter but because the incorrectly transcribed the street. Instead of ‘Morning Sun rd’ they wrote it as “Morningsun rd” thoroughly confounding the Post Office (surprise!!!). After my parents getting a letter saying that my degree requirements were not met I called the Office of Liberal Education, it took about 15 minutes searching on Miami University’s website (which is built on tables), to find out that it was denied. I asked if they could just email me the letter instead of sending it snail mail again, and they did.

Upon receiving the email it stated:

“Your Miami Plan petition has been reviewed. The petition, to substitute EDL
204, Sociocultures in Education, for the Foundation IIIA US Cultures
requirement, has been denied. It was noted that this course is a Miami Plan
Humanities course, not a World Cultures course.”

Of course it doesn’t qualify for a World Cultures course. I NEVER wanted it to qualify for a World Cultures Course!!! Wait, but before that its says that they are counting it for a Foundation IIIA US Cultures
requirement which one is it!?!?!?

If there would have been a system for this, where I could submit a petition online and selected the category in which I wanted the class I took to count, then sent emails to my advisor and Chief Departmental Advisor for the class where they could login and electronically sign the petition all of this would be avoided, and not to mention saved the university a whole lot of paper shuffling.

Miami got most of the things right, as do most people, but if the University would have proofread what they sent me then my confusion and aggravation could have been avoided. And design systems where the human factor of error is a small as possible, but not sacrificing the human element.