Illusion of Equality

In our current “race to the bottom”-oriented society, people strive to protect other people’s feelings and boost their self-esteem by telling them they’re not losers even when they lose, and attempting to convince them that everyone’s equal.

In fact, we are *not* equals, and attempting to convince people that we are is hindering them more than it’s helping them. Continue reading “Illusion of Equality”

Step Backward to Move Forward (Selective Neglect)

Whether you’re a 9-5’er or a freelancer, you want to have time set aside to learn new things.

I always advise people to leave themselves time for self-improvement.

What I mean by this is that whether you’re a 9-5’er or a freelancer, you want to have time set aside to learn new things.

This is because if your skills remain the same while your industry improves, you get left behind.

It’s also because you can’t change directions if all of your time is spent going in your current direction.

If you find yourself in a situation where you feel stagnant, or if not that, you feel like your current situation is hindering your ability to move forward, the solution may be to step backward instead of trying to maintain what you currently have going on and add to it. Continue reading “Step Backward to Move Forward (Selective Neglect)”

Responsibilities in Relationships

Single Life

Just two days ago, I was out to brunch with a friend and somehow, the topic of video games came up. I think I was explaining to her what I felt the value was of being yourself from the giddyap instead of doing what other people wanted you to do so they’d be willing to hang out with you. Continue reading “Responsibilities in Relationships”

Time, Part 02

Continued from “Time, Business & Handouts [Time, Part 1]”

In the very beginning of 2009, after I had aired my grievances with 2008 and was feeling, mentally, so fresh and so clean [clean], I ended up in a f2f conversation with a client one evening.

The reason I mention that it was evening is that I do my best work in the morning. By the time it gets to 7pm on any given day, I don’t give a flying &$#% about YOU or your project (even if I’m still working on it, hehe). The only think I’m thinking about by then are BREWS and CHICKS.

It’s nothing personal. I’m the same way about my own projects. The same thing that sounds like a FANTASTIC idea in the morning, that I can dedicate all sorts of TIME and ENERGY to, by the time it hits evening, I don’t care about my own ideas. I’ve learned this about myself and when I’m “eeh” about something that I think up in the evening, I shelf it until the morning to see what I REALLY think about it.

So that’s the state I was in when I happened to be f2f (face-to-face, IRL, in real life) with this client and I was nowhere NEAR in the mood to discuss ANY business other than what we were there to discuss at that moment. Here’s how the conversation went:

Him: So, what’s your schedule for [such-and-such-a-day]?

Actually, I have to stop there. πŸ™‚ When he asked me that, first of all, I tried to mentally access the day he was talking about to see if I was booked for any work on that day. He was talking about the week ahead of the day we were talking, and I realized after a few seconds that I didn’t have anything booked for that entire week. Once I figured that out, I shut my brain back down and went back to thinking about brews & chicks.

So, this is how it went:

Him: “So, what’s your schedule for [such-and-such-a-day]?”
Me: [mentally accessing] “…………………………..” *shrug*
Him: [looks at me funny]
Him: “ok, So what’s your schedule for [such-and-such-a-day+1]?”
Me: [now knowing I had nothing booked that day either] *shrug*
Him: [looks at me funny]
Him: “So, what do you do?”
Me: [stopping thinking about chicks… AGAIN, and accessing]
Me: “…………………. Well… The other day, a friend of mine couldn’t get her powerpoint presentation to go to video properly, so I had her send me her files and I made the video for her and output it to several formats she wanted and gave her the links to download them………………….. I also spend a lot of time maintaining my internet presence……………”
Him: [looking at me like I’m stupid] “Nah. I mean, What do you do FOR MONEY?”
Me: [looking at him like he wasn’t listening] “That’s what I’m talking about.”

Continue reading “Time, Part 02”

Living In Public

This is a response to Chrissie Brodigan‘s post, “DonÒ€ℒt Feed the Trolls: Dealing With Social Media Sins”.

Not that I give a damn about disclosure, but I’ll mention that Chrissie is a friend of mine (as is probably everyone else she’s talking about in her post):

Interesting.

I posted about this back in June: [http://billcammack.com/2008/07/12/freedom-of-consequences/].

Basically, in order to “live online” as we do, one needs to remain mindful of the lowest common denominator. Whatever you’re “saying”, make sure that if your employer or your grandmother or your “significant other” or you CHILDREN see it, that it’s an accurate representation of yourself that you’re willing to OWN… because odds are that eventually you WILL have to own it, and probably in a fashion that you didn’t consider at the time.

Even “That was then and this is now” is only a partial defense. Look at the Presidential campaign that just went on. John McCain acted like A JERK for the whole time, and then when it was all over and he lost, he gave, IMO, a heartfelt, genuine, really respectable and admirable speech. Things like that can alter people’s perception about a person, but the facts and memories remain about their prior behavior, even if the ‘pain’ of them is muted by the person’s present actions.

So, ultimately, the WIN is Prevention and not Cure. Does that call for sacrifice of some (or many) things one would want to do or say? Yes. The question, however, is what do you really want in the end? Do you want to have social media friends, who don’t know everything you think and feel?… or would you rather be known for what you think and feel and let the chips fall?…..

Social Media is characterized by asynchronous relationships… basically, stalking, in a one-way fashion or a mutual fashion. I might get two comments on a post I make, and then everyone I run into IRL is like “I read your post, blah blah blah”. You can’t suspect that the people you hear from are the ONLY ONES that dislike what happened. Those are merely the ones who are willing to risk THEIR OWN social media reputations by wearing THEIR hearts on Twitter in the same way you constantly wear yours. It basically branches out and people take sides behind the scenes, which is what causes “floods”, because a lot of people get fed up at the same time… a lot of people that the person in question probably wasn’t even AWARE that they knew of or had any opinions at all about the situation, which they thought, for some odd reason, was contained to a small group.

On top of that, our NYC set is different from other groups, because we’re in so much physical, IRL contact with each other. I’m very used to going to parties where I know 60 people on the Facebook “definite” list. I have over 200 mutual friends with several people on Facebook, and a lot of those people live here in NY or NJ. Obviously, all of these people are not going to get along with each other. The only way to navigate this group is to remain neutral. I can care or not care about the situation, empathize or not, but ultimately, it’s none of my business, and I’m not going to tell or suggest to people what they should do, and I’m not going to choose one side over the other, between people that have historically been decent towards me and have developed some sort of beef between each other.

So, to apply my own theory… When I go to that party that at least 60 people that I know are going to show up to, I have to be mentally prepared to OWN anything I’ve said about them since the last time I saw them. I also have to OWN the videos I make and the blog posts I make and the currently 710 pictures of myself on Facebook, where I can’t turn around and say “no… I don’t know that person” or “no… I wasn’t at that party”. I have to own what I say and do AT the party. I have to own the media I output about that party and the cycle continues. So, basically, every stitch of media that you output, you need to check yourself on whether you’re willing to own it, ad infinitum.

As this pertains to your suggested rules for offenders:

You always “Acknowledge Action”, because it’s in “Black & White”, and YOU put it there yourself. It’s not like paparazzi ran up and quoted you and put it in the tabloids. If you post from a position of ownership, acknowledgement is obvious.

You can’t “Become a Victim”, because you’ve already owned the media. You already know WHY you said what you said or did what you did and you already thought about how you would defend it before you pressed “send”. “Defense” is merely informing people about what you were thinking when you posted it. The only real question is whether you unintentionally slighted someone in a way you didn’t anticipate when you posted, in which case, if you feel like apologizing for it, that’s completely appropriate. If they take offense at something you fully MEANT to say and currently stand behind at the point of the ensuing conversation, the issue becomes whether or not you were out of bounds with what you said and whether “the shoe fits” as far as what you said about them, which THEY would need to recognize, and get out of your face.

The Final Frontier is blocking people. That doesn’t keep them from finding out about YOU, but it keeps YOU from hearing what THEY have to say about you. If people aren’t going to be rational and have intelligent discussions with you (assuming YOU’RE acting rationally, to begin with), then the solution is to agree to disagree and hope to avoid those people as much as possible.

So, Yes… It’s EXTREMELY COMPLICATED to live in public, even the limited “public” of our echo chamber, but that’s exactly what it is… an Echo Chamber, which means that everything you say and everything everyone else says is going to keep coming back to you. Your best bet, as I’ve outlined, is OWNERSHIP from the giddyap, so you’re fully prepared to deal with the ricochets.

~Bill

Life, Futility, Alignment, Agreement

A & C aligned in perfect sync today. Understanding is beautiful… and simple at the same time.

Gabriela knows what I mean. πŸ˜‰
Bill Cammack - Wasted Days

To me, Days are Wasted when you know thereÒ€ℒs something you want to do or that you feel you *SHOULD* be doing, and youÒ€ℒre not doing it.

Bill Cammack GSX-R NYC Night
Photo Credit: Jay Batista

Connections (Passing it On)

Christian Payne aka Ò€œDocumentallyÒ€ is a photographer and blogger who was commissioned by the UNHCR to photograph the plight of Iraqi refugees in Jordan.

I edited Christian’s work into a video that we’ve recently completed, and he posted this video, thanking me as well as others for what we’ve done:


Seesmic Member Link | Non-member Link

Initially, this post was going to be called “Thanks for the Thanks”, because I definitely appreciate Christian’s authenticity and heartfelt statements. πŸ˜€ “Cheers for that”, as they say over there in the U.K. πŸ˜€

However, that’s really a private communication between Christian and myself that happened to be expressed on a public medium (both his video and my text, above). What I think would be more useful to my 40 readers, according to Technorati (minus however-many registered search engines :p) is to talk about the process of creation, in this case, dealing with video, and the difference that it makes when you’re actually emotionally invested in what you’re doing. Also, I wanted to give Christian some more background on how we ended up working together.

I’m a video blogger, which essentially means I film videos and put them on the internet. We have our own little “echo chamber” of friends and colleagues. I first became aware, sort of, of Phil Campbell on Dan McVicar’s social site “Late Nite Mash”.

Bill Cammack & Dan McVicarBill & Dan in NYC
In November, 2006, Dan collected music pieces from Phil and other members and made a “mash-up” with video footage I sent him of New York City nightlife:

I say “sort of” aware of Phil because at that time, social media wasn’t advanced enough for people to get to know more about each other than what they typed on a page or a picture or video they posted. At this point, we not only have the technology to do our own video shows, like Phil’s “The Gravity”, but there are more and more live services popping up… Ustream, BlogTV, Yahoo! Live, LiveVideo, new services all the time, where we get to see a lot more about people than we used to.

So anyway, I got to know Phil Campbell as a quality guy who STAYS on top of the game when it comes to social media and is simply a treasure trove of good ideas. πŸ˜€

Next in order, Andrew Lipson gave me an invite to this (at the time, invite-only) video-messaging application called Seesmic while I was an audience member of the Jeff Pulver Show. I checked it out, but it really wasn’t my type of conversation going on between the beta-testers, so I just watched Seesmic like a television show instead of participating in the watercooleresque banter.

There were a couple of people there with strong personalities and methods to their madness. The most animated and volatile of them was this character named “Documentally”. πŸ˜€ Most people, once you’ve seen four videos of them, you know their range… or at least the range they’re willing to bring to the world-stage which is Seesmic or any other site where you post videos that people can watch from NYC to Zimbabwe. With Documentally, you never really know what was going to happen in one of his videos. He might say something intelligent and serious. He might say something batty and off the wall. He might say nothing at all. He might roll his truck and videotape the situation as if he’s the first reporter on the scene! πŸ˜€ It was clear from the “Documentally” character that Christian Payne had A LOT of range to his personality, and there was a lot of entertainment value in his videos.

So being a morning person, I tend to chat with the European folks (who are 5/6 hours ahead of us) before the Americans wake up. I’m chatting with Phil Campbell and he mentions that his friend Christian had a project he was working on. I let Phil know I was aware of Documentally and was willing to chat with him about the project. In skypeing with Christian, I got to meet the “hang out at the pub” version instead of the “Seesmic character” version. He’s a nice guy, and as he put it in the video, he’s “someone I’d like to call a friend”. πŸ™‚

I really meant to talk about the actual project, but I’ll do that some other time. This ended up being a post about connections. One of the benefits of social media is that people get to learn about each other at their own pace and according to their own level of interest. Another benefit is that we have checks and balances inside our “echo chamber”. For example, Dina Kaplan and I have 102 “Facebook Friends” in common! :O … Even if you spit that into 50 friends and 50 acquaintances, that means there are *50* people that I can contact right this second and ask them a question about Dina. I’d probably get 15 responses back, and they’d all be approximately the same, because that’s how Dina carries herself. She’s consistent.

Liz Gannes, Bill Cammack & Dina Kaplan
Liz Gannes, Bill Cammack & Dina Kaplan

Through social media, and also by meeting in person @ Adam Quirk‘s event named Vloggercue in Brooklyn, I developed an impression of Phil Campbell as a stand-up guy and a good judge of character. For Phil to bring up Christian’s project to me, I’m automatically *infinitely* more inclined to hear more about it. Yes, it helped A LOT that Christian already had a strong social media presence. Yes, it helped A LOT that the photos he shot for the project are rich and full of emotion, intimacy and meaning. However, the *main* thing is connection… passing it on. Social media offers us the opportunity to get to know each other, asynchronously… and then follow up to find out how the real person matches up to his or her online persona.

Life Isn’t Fair

OK Fellaz, let’s get down to brass tacks here.

The way “dating” is set up in patriarchal society, it’s up to YOU, as the guy, to run the show. YOU kick it to the chick, she decides whether to give you some or not. You make the money. You make the decisions. You’re the “head of household”. No matter how much this society tries to make you into women, you’re *NOT*, so get over it and handle your business when it comes to chicks.

Having said that….. Since it’s YOUR responsibility to pull the chick, it’s YOUR responsiblity to be FLY! That’s a slang term meaning VERY GOOD in general, but in this case, we’re talking about your overall presentation. We’re talking about how you look, how you act, what shape you’re in, how ambitous you are in your career, how you handle your money… Top to Bottom, you have to be better than the next man if you think you’re going to get the rap to some chick.

LIFE. IS. NOT. FAIR.

You are not ENTITLED to a girlfriend.
You are not ENTITLED to have any female friends AT ALL.
You are not ENTITLED to have sex with a chick even if she likes hanging out with you.
You are not ENTITLED to have instant messenger text or video chats with chicks.
You are not ENTITLED to responses to your emails or direct messages.
You *ARE* entitled to….. *NOTHING*. πŸ˜€

All men are NOT created equal. We may have been born through the same process, but some of us have distinct advantages over others. Go look up Alpha Males, Beta Males and Omega Males. If you’re a natural, chicks just like you and that’s that. You can do whatever you want, such as write blog posts that talk yang about males and females AT THE SAME TIME, and you will still have girls attracted to you just by walking in the door. Life Isn’t Fair. πŸ˜€

The problem with Omega Males is that they refuse to correctly perceive themselves as the bottom of the barrel. They think to themselves “That good-looking, in-shape, well-educated, friendly, gregarious, charming, well-spoken guy over there can get girls…. so can I!” BUZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. Wrong.

The first thing Omega Males need to do is realize their position in life. It’s like going to Alcoholics Anonymous. Unless you admit you have a problem, you’ll never go for treatment. The first step is admitting that YOU’RE WACK! … Say it with me now… “I am wack”. See? Don’t you feel better now? πŸ˜€ NOW we can get to the part where you attempt to overcome your deficiencies. See, by thinking you’re the same as guys that women actually WANT to talk to them, you’re doing yourself a disservice because you’re not trying as hard as *YOU* need to in order to pull a decent female. Then, when the chick cuts off communications with you, you try to blame it on her. You want to say she’s fickle or a tease or she led you on. Let me let you in on a little secret…..

Chicks in general are non-confrontational. You would think that’s a good thing, but it isn’t… not for YOU. It’s good for guys that girls WANT, because you say “let’s get out of here ;)” and she says “ok” and it’s on and poppin’. The problem for YOU is that she never wanted to talk to you in the first place. She saw you come in the door. She saw you on the dance floor. She saw you post up in her area. She saw you looking out the corner of your eye to try to gauge if you’d be successful in rapping to her or not. She knew what you wanted when you asked her what time it is or if she’d like to dance. She knew you were going to try to get on. She knew you would ask her for her number…..

This is where the non-confrontational part comes in. She will do one of three things. She will inform you that she’s not going to give you her number, she will give you a fake number or she will give you a real number.

If she tells you “no” from the get, she’s going to have to listen to you whining and trying to change her mind.

If she gives you a fake number, she takes the risk that you will call her immediately and realize that you connected to Pizza Hut. More whining from you and trying to change her mind. On top of that, she looks like an IDIOT because she “doesn’t know her own telephone number”. Now, she has to either tell you “no” or give up the real number.

If she gives you the real number, it’s still a trap. πŸ™‚ There are only two ways you can call her. With or without Caller ID. If you call her with your number blocked, she’s going to let it go to the machine, because she DOESN’T know who’s calling her. If you call her with your number showing, she’s going to let it go to the machine because she DOES know who’s calling her… Or, to put it another way, she knows it’s not anybody calling whom she actually picks up the phone for.

All paths here lead to frustration. The only way around this is to realize that YOU’RE WACK and start on the road to self-improvement. Let’s look at what you can do to make yourself less loathsome to chicks. πŸ˜€

Improve your vocabulary. Go research the difference between “their” and “there”, and “your” and “you’re”. If this chick accidentally has a kid with you, she’s going to want the kid to be SMART, not STUPID.

Stop using primitive tactics to try to pull her. By using the same AMATEUR skillz that get you on with short-bus girls at the club, you’re demeaning the woman you’re kicking it to. She can’t believe that YOU believe you’re going to get on with such garbage. She feels low-rated and is less likely to give it up, so figure out how to step up your game, playah.

Stop trying to hide your kids. This is the United States of America. It’s very easy to find out that you have kids…. and a wife too, for that matter. Stop faking the funk. If you’re trying to get some on the side, “man up” about it. You might get turned down off the bat, but at least she respects you for not trying to get over.

If you’re *BITTER* about everything, KEEP. IT. TO. YOURSELF! πŸ˜€ Nobody’s interested in what you think you’re entitled to or how mad you are that you don’t have what the next man has. Suck it up, put a SMILE on your face, and show the chick a good time.

Go. To. The. Gym. You want to be in GOOD shape so that she’s HOPING you take your clothes off instead of DREADING the concept. πŸ™ You don’t want her to start singing the Fat Albert theme song when you emerge from the bathroom in your boxers.

If you’re NOT going to get in shape, at least DRESS WELL! Buy one of those hip-hop graffiti shirts so you look like a wall or an old-school subway car.

Watch black and white movies. Guys don’t know how to treat the ladies anymore. You have to watch old movies to receive the essence of male elegance and character.

And, the *most* important thing is to step to her “on the humble”. Do *NOT* act like you’re entitled to have her talk to you, text with you, email with you, video chat with you, dance with you, go home with you… NONE OF THAT. Just let her know you appreciate how she looks and you’d like to get to know more about her, then cross your fingers! πŸ˜€

DatingGenius

Only Date People Better Than YOU! :D

As you know if you’ve been following this column over the last 6 months, DatingGenius doesn’t “date”.

The term “dating” implies progression. It’s like something Richie Cunningham or Potsie Weber might do. You see a chick and you want her, but you’re not willing to let her know what time it is, so you beat around the bush taking her places in hopes that she’ll see you as the kind of guy she wants to give it up to. *yawn*

In fact, there *IS* no progression. A chick knows if she wants to mess with you off the bat. Depending on what you tell her after that, she either thinks more about giving you some or LESS about giving you some, hahaha πŸ˜€ … That’s all there is. You want to hook up with her, or else you wouldn’t be on a so-called “date” with her. Everybody knows it, so stop acting like you’re all sneaky and undercover and then try to surprise the chick with a “good-night kiss” when you drop her home, hoping that it works like in the movies, and all of a sudden, she’ll invite you in for…. a nightcap. :/

So, no. DatingGenius doesn’t “date”. He hangs out with chicks. Period. If they’re into DatingGenius like that, then CHA-CHINGGGG!!! πŸ˜€ If not, we have a good time anyway, then we go about our respective businesses.

Having said that, if you still insist on “dating”, like actually courting one person in a serial fashion with the intent of them eventually handing you a title that’s supposed to mean something, like “significant other”, then make sure you date someone BETTER. THAN. YOU! πŸ˜€

Now, that might not seem to make sense, coming from the diabolical, empty-life-having (bookstore chick’s friend informed me of this a couple of weeks ago), sinister, evil, manipulating DatingGenius! πŸ˜€ You would think that he would advocate kicking it to the dumbest, low-brow character you can find in order to maximize your control over the situation. Dummies and lowlives are great if you’re just trying to get on ASAP and don’t intend to see them ever again in life. If you’re actually going to REPRESENT with this person, like as in let ANYONE ELSE know that you’re messing with them… That person needs to be a FANTASTIC individual. This is actually MORE IMPORTANT for the ladies than it is for the fellaz, so pay attention. πŸ˜€

[Part 1: Dummies]

Let’s say the person you’re dating is a dummy. Like they’re just not intelligent. Maybe you’re on iChat with them and it takes them mad, crazy, stupid long to type a response to you, and then after all that waiting, it’s like a line and a half because they were only using their two pointer fingers to peck at the keyboard. Or maybe they can’t spell for JACK, and you’re wondering if they dropped out of school in the 5th grade to pack bags for change at the supermarket, then got hooked on drugs before making it back into the school system.

If you actually date this idiot, regardless of how good he or she looks or how good the sex is, don’t give yourself credit like you’ve pulled off some fantastic feat. In fact, anyone smarter than them will be able to manipulate them if they choose to, and you’ve “built your house on sand”… if not quicksand.

On top of that, you can’t TAKE this person ANYWHERE! πŸ˜€ Unless they happen to LOOK intelligent and you can convince them to not say ANYTHING around your peers, this person is an accident waiting to happen… Actually, an accident TRYING to happen, because it’s been my experience that the dumber someone is, the more they try to impress other people. Did you notice that? πŸ˜€ It’s like the smartest people, most of the time in a conversation, they’re listening and PROCESSING what people are saying. When they finally say something, it’s worth hearing and it’s the product of what they’ve absorbed from what’s been going on. Meanwhile, you see the dummies sitting there staring at the mouth of the person who’s talking… They seem to be trying to synchronize, like double dutch, getting ready to jump into the conversation when they perceive that the current speaker is about to finish his or her point.

The problem with this is that if you’re synchronizing, you’re not LISTENING, which becomes apparent when the dummy jumps in with something relevant to 10 minutes ago when they finally had ONE good idea, and they’ve been waiting until now to get a word in edgewise. That’s when the entire conversation stops and everyone tries to be polite. There’s this silent exchange that goes on between everyone. They’re not so much being polite to the dummy as they’re being polite TO *YOU* because it’s YOUR FAULT that this person’s in here $&%*ing up the program! πŸ˜€ Basically, people are embarrassed *for* you, and everyone’s trying not to mention that the emperor has no clothes on.

This is easily avoided, if you insist on dating dummies and bringing them out in public, by not giving them a title when you introduce them. We all have those friends… Every so often, they come around with a new…. person… and they introduce this person by name, but no title. Like, it’s clear that they’re out on a date, but by not declaring this person, you get to play it off down the line. Oh… That was a business partner from the Kentucky branch, my job asked me to show him around. Oh… That was my CEO’s daughter, visiting from San Diego. Who? When?… OH!… I was interviewing her for that intern position (at 11:30 pm). This only works, however, if you know you’re going to get rid of them eventually. If you end up eventually declaring them, you look like a chump for trying to play it off.

You also can’t leave people like this alone with your friends. Do NOT go to the bathroom. Do NOT go to the bar to order drinks. Do NOT pass “go” and Do NOT collect $200. Stick to this person LIKE GLUE. If you leave, and your friends ask your date “What do you think about Obama” and they reply “I think he’s still hiding in those mountains”, you’re *dead*. Laughing stock. You will NEVER live it down.

DatingGenius