No One Cares About You #CGTCM

no one cares, red stamp on a grunge paper textureOne of the lessons I’m reminded of again and again when marketing is that

no one cares about you; it’s our job to make them.

This is the first in a series of posts I’m doing as I sort through (in my head) issues around inbound. I’ve called it The Cheeky Guide to Content Marketing (#CGTCM). I think I picked up “cheeky” from the MIL, who uses the word a lot.

I have had grand designs to even turn this into an ebook at some point. There are plenty of inbound ebooks on strategy and what you should do. Many of them aren’t very down and dirty though — or talk about the agony of creating something good that just doesn’t work.

Cuz that sucks.  Continue reading No One Cares About You #CGTCM

5 Timeless “Rules” of Social Media and Content Marketing

social media rules of the road are similar to those for content marketingThe rules for social media engagement really haven’t changed much in the last 9 years. True, there are different mores and ways to navigate the various social channels, but the basics are pretty much same same.

From whence does this mind-bending observation cometh?

I was weeding through some old notebooks before tossing them (for those few of you who know me and read this – Yes, I do throw things away. Now and then.). I came across my “rules of the road” draft for commenting/engaging on the AIIM Community.

Because of my career step-to-the-right into doing content marketing, there’s plenty that can be applied there too. Continue reading 5 Timeless “Rules” of Social Media and Content Marketing

Lee Breaux, RIP

Lee and me
Me and Lee, circa 1972.

Lee was 46.

Of all the people I know, barring parents and grandparents, I knew Lee the longest. We “met”, photos and family say, when we were infants/toddlers. A few of my earliest memories include a starring role by Lee.

We didn’t see each other often, but we made the most of the time we did spend together:

  • We won the Battle of Gettysburg for the south many times in Meme and Pawpan’s backyard
  • Whacking the ever-loving crap out of each other with wooden swords made by Pawpan
  • Climbing on the roof when Meme wasn’t watching
  • Being fed the best fresh bread made by Ms Plauche, his grandmother. And listening to his grandfather talk about being a Marine fighting in the Pacific
  • Watching thunderstorms rolling in
  • Indulging in a love of Pizza Quick Sauce pizza – the best invention of my early childhood
  • Weeks at Toledo Bend swimming, walking in the woods, reading, lighting fires (in approved places), and seeing how long we could go without going outside to pee at night since we were both scared of the dark.
  • Most times when I open a jar of jalapeno slices, I remember watching him guzzle the juice from the jar on a dare. Other than a slight redness in his face, no effect. Though I like to think I heard muffled screams from the bathroom later that night.
  • The second time I got drunk (that I remember – apparently I had a habit of hiding under tables and reaching up for unattended beer cans as a small child) is that we found a bottle of “blue shit” in Meme and Pawpan’s camper that was parked in the extra lot next to their house one night that we slept in there. I since found out that that must’ve been Curasau. I still don’t like that stuff much.
  • We learned early on not to poke too hard at each other’s phobias – spiders (me) and roaches (him) – because retribution was harsh and brutal

It was a good, free-range childhood. I’m lucky in that I’ve got a lot of a happy childhood memories. He’s in a lot of them.

As we got older, we matured – a little – and changed a bit but our enjoyment of each others’ company didn’t. He introduced me to tons of bad 80s movies – I still can’t watch About Last Night without thinking of Lee. Camping on Holly Beach. We made pathetic attempts at hitting on chicks in bars. He was proud of his service in the Berlin Brigade – I still have the piece of the Berlin Wall he brought back for me.

Lee was one of those annoying “I’m from Texas” fuckers who think being from Texas is some super, wonderful thing. I remember him telling me once that when he was stationed to Berlin, he’d always say “I’m from Texas.” After a few much as a soldier in a foreign country, he said he started to say “I’m from the US.” He was proud of his service and country.

We once super-pathetically attempted to get drunk in Texas on $10 bucks between us. Since we were under 21, was hard to find a spot in Texas to sell to us. We finally found a spot that took Lee’s military I.D. (and we both got pissed off at the idea that he could serve as Russian cannon fodder, but couldn’t buy a beer in the States). We ended up buying a 6 pack of Black Label and one of Pearl. I don’t think we finished either 6-pack.

We even had the occasional deep conversation about life, love, and the future.

Then we sequed into cliché – between college for me and he lived in New Hampshire for a while with his Dad, then moved back to Texas and I moved to Maryland, then families, and with both of us being mostly phone-allergic, we didn’t see much of each other or talk often over the last 20 someodd years.

But it was always easy to fall back into that easy friendship when we were together. Fatherhood changed him – for the better in many ways, I think – and he adored his kids. But he still had a laugh like a hyena on helium and is one of the few people I’ve known who actually cackled with laughter.

And even though we didn’t talk much, I thought of him fairly often. And one of the benefits of a possibly moving to Houston in a few years was being able to drive up to Dallas now and then and visit a little more often.

I would’ve enjoyed that. I like to think he would have too. I would’ve enjoyed making fun of his inability to listen to any piece of music published anytime after around 1988 – I still don’t understand his Lita Ford fetish (Samantha Fox, that one I got). And there’s plenty enough ammo for him to have returned fire on me.

Now I’m about to leave to visit him for the first and last time where he made a life for himself with his wife and children.

Service at 11:00 on Friday.

He was 46.

Singing Crabs, Kung Fu, and a Little Bit of Faith #AtoZchallenge

k.sebastian jaw dropFrom kissing to other amorous things to kung fu to growing up and keeping the faith, a quartet of songs I love.

And this image of Sebastian’s look of utter disbelief is – quite possibly – my favorite Disney movie clip ever. Me and Kirk rented the tape any number of times. Most times, we’d spend a few minutes laughing our asses off. Actually, literally rolling on the floor laughing our asses off (pre-acronym days) because the couch was too far back and the preferred TV-watching spot was propped up on pillows in front of the TV in the middle of the floor. Damn, and that shitty TV was AWESOME back then. You couldn’t give one of those away today with it’s 20 inch or so screen.

Whatever. Time for kisses. Continue reading Singing Crabs, Kung Fu, and a Little Bit of Faith #AtoZchallenge

Jackson Boogie

#AtoZchallenge 2017 Jungle Boogie and Jackson
Not the Jackson in the song. He is slightly cross-eyed. He does — now and then — miss a leap. He’s the straightest shooting kitty in the west. He’s also a lovely, gentle cat; except sometimes when playing with Knox or MacLeod.

Holy shit! Only two songs today!

Jungle Boogie

Thank you Quentin Tarantino for putting together a kick ass soundtrack for Pulp Fiction (one of my favorite movies of all time).

I’d never heard Jungle Boogie before seeing it in Pulp Fiction – which I saw for the first time at the now-closed theatre in Bethesda where you could order food and drink beers.

This is a great song to sing in the car. In the living room. Anywhere, really. And while I don’t boogie too good, I’ve been known to get up on one toe to the Pulp Fiction soundtrack – particularly Misirlou.

Hollywood Swinging https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YK-cvcw3ngM popped up next, which always makes me think of Grand Theft Auto 3, which was like playing in Scarface’s Miami. There was a mini game where you could dance to Hollywood Swinging. Also great soundtracks – GTA games. In the past, I sometimes would turn the game on, hijack a car, and then turn on the radio and work (the work part happening in real life).

Jackson

I know, shocking, another Johnny Cash song.

We got married in a fever, hotter than a pepper sprout.

Johnny and June are great in this. I think my favorite version is the Live From San Quentin concert album. But any version will do. The video below is from the Ralph Emery show, which until 5 minutes ago I had no idea had ever existed.

One, TV has come a LOOOOONNNGGGG way. Two, look at those skinny ankle pants and heels Cash is sporting. Three, and the reason I like this so much, I love how he drifts off and gives her the spotlight for her time on the Mic. When they met, she was the bigger star with her sisters and I just love how he gave his wife space to shine on her own. And she was a damn fine singer in her own right.

What a great, messy love story those two had together.

Jackson, in addition to being one of my cats, is also one of the turning points in my life. I stayed at Aunt Lila’s one evening in the fall of senior year for a college interview – can’t remember if that was at Millsaps or if we drove on to somewhere else. Obviously wasn’t that impressed or didn’t get in if I can’t remember now! Anyway, a path not taken.

I do know that if the auto dealership two years later in Hattiesburg, MS (where I went to University of Southern Miss) had had the part to fix my Chevy Spectrum around about September 1990, I would’ve been in Jackson visiting a girl I had a huge crush on (and I’m pretty sure the feeling was swinging around to mutual – and she was getting over the idea that she was a few years older) instead of at a room party in my friend Jason’s suite where I met my future ex-wife.

Due to a delayed auto part, which I think was accidentally mailed to a different garage, course of my life – irrevocably altered. Casey and Lauren should both NEVER complain about slow mail delivery. Ever.

I don’t think Ms. Jackson and I would’ve gotten married in a fever, but who knows. One of those big “what if’s”.

Anyhoo, take it away Johnny and June.

Drinking Alone With Ponies #AtoZchallenge

Pony
I think Pepper was a little bit taller.

Hard one today, I thought I’d go with just “If I Had a Pony” and stay somewhat short for a change, but I keep thinking of a few others to add. Got to the drinking songs and decided to end it there.

Feeling virtuous after a run yesterday and an hour in a Boot Camp workout today. Don’t need the temptation to rummage around for Old Granddad or go hunting for Turkey.

We start with the funny-looking fella (not the one from Fargo). Continue reading Drinking Alone With Ponies #AtoZchallenge

If Don’t Hold On to Your Hundred Dollar Bill, You Can Get a Room at the Hotel California #AtoZchallenge

Alabama Shakes
Alabama Shakes, one of my favorite bands. Photo from http://www.alabamashakes.com.

Friday Night (Hundred Dollar Bill)

Officially, this is an F song. I always call it Hundred Dollar Bill and got the order flipped. Whatever. My blog, my rules.

I. Love. This. Song.

When the girls were younger, they’d both go to Louisiana for weeks during the summer. Candice and I would each get in a visit with our respective parents on either end of the trip. They’d also spend time there just with the grandparents. It was a win/win/win situation all around.

On one of these trips, I flew into Houston on a later flight (probably because it was the cheapest) and so Kirk picked me up. Continue reading If Don’t Hold On to Your Hundred Dollar Bill, You Can Get a Room at the Hotel California #AtoZchallenge