Blog Archives

Take That Thing Off Your Head

I’m an opinionated person (which you know if you’ve read any portion of this blog). So, it’s needless to say that I tend to have strong thoughts about fashion – see Leggings Are Not Pants. Well, this weekend The Boyfriend and I took a trip to the beach. As he was rifling around his car for his wallet to bring with us, he pulled out an accessory he hasn’t worn since…well ever, that I’ve seen. What was this accessory, you ask?

A fedora.

Yep, a fedora. And not the cool, 1920s John Dillinger-type fedora. A douchey, straw Jason Mraz-style fedora. I gave him the old “You’re really not wearing THAT, are you?” And of course he laughed, made some comment about it being badass, and we made our way to the beach.

The more I thought about it, though, the more I’ve noticed that I’ve seen a ton of fedoras this summer. I think the number may be approaching double digits. In my book, one fedora is too many.

I was thinking about it to much that when I was in Dunkin Donuts, breaking a $20 for parking at the beach, I Instagram’d a picture of him, fedora and all, and sent it out to into the social medias. I got three responses (which for me is a lot), and I completely agree with one of them. Guess which:

Mike Brian Facebook

Hat by hat basis, indeed.

Mike Tweet

For reference, he was wearing a pair of Vineyard Vines swim trunks with limes and pink margaritas all over them.

What I really want to know is how fedoras went from being this:

Bogart FedoraTo this:

Douchey Fedora

The world may never know. Anyhoo, if you see someone wearing a fedora, do them a favor and tell them: Take that thing off your head.

Let Me Google That – How Our Vocabulary Has Changed in the Digital Age

Back in the day, before computers, we used books. Remember, those things with words printed on paper? Dictionaries, thesauri, and – wait for it – encyclopedias. Now our lives have been made faster and easier (open to opinions) with the digital age. We can look up baseball stats, find old friends, and order a pizza, all in a matter of seconds, and usually from a handheld device like a smartphone. Thomas Edison has nothing on T-Mobile.

With the introduction of these digital devices into our lives, our vocabulary has slowly changed. I’m talking about brands and services that have now become verbs. It’s really kind of fascinating when you think about it. When things were introduced before, say, the phonebook, we never used to say “Oh, let me Yellow Pages that.” But we have managed to incorporate brands into our everyday language, as normal to use now as “LOL” or “BRB”. Here’s a list of the most common ones.

Google is probably the most common brand that has become a verb. Have a question about your computer? Google it. Need the address of your doctor’s office? Google it. Want to know something about anything at all? You get the idea. Google is the most popular database for fact-finding that’s out there.

Wikipedia is an extremely large collection of user-generated content. It works like an encyclopedia, except people can edit the posts, which can lead to erroneous (and sometimes just outrageous) information. Advice: don’t use it for your history report. But if you want to find some useless information about a celebrity, you can Wiki it and you’ll find pretty reliable information.

Yelp is probably one of the most used apps I have, aside from google. When you want to find out what’s close to you, you Yelp. Food, entertainment, activities, pretty much anything you can think of. It includes information about the place, and user reviews. You can also write reviews to help others in their Yelp quests. One of the more functional brand-verbs out there.

With it’s recent IPO (epic fail), Facebook has been in the news a lot lately. But for those of us that have been using it since it became available in 2004, the action of Facebooking is a normal activity. We use it when gossiping: “Guess who Facebooked me the other day!” Or when talking about sharing what we’re doing: “Oh, I totally need to Facebook this.” Everything in our daily lives goes on Facebook, which has generated the verb out of the name. I actually wrote a post about this a few months ago, completely unrelated to this, but check it out anyway.

Ah, YouTube. Probably one of the most entertaining sites out there. Search for any video, and you are able to find it. Generally within minutes of it even happening. For example, celebrity snafus like Madonna tripping in the SuperBowl halftime show. Or, entertainment like The Bed Intruder song. Or, user generated content like my best friend Sam’s channel. Whatever you’re looking for, you can YouTube it and you’ll most likely find it.

With new technology emerging all the time, I’m sure we’ll have more brand to verb words in the future. I’m interested to see how our language evolves in the future.

The Art of Social Media

Social media. It’s quite the hot topic these days. It’s also something I’m very passionate about. Gen Y’ers are thriving on it. Gen X’ers are hopping on the wagon, too, a la your mom on Facebook. It’s also causing some huge debates. Where has the art of conversation gone? Why can’t people just, god forbid, pick up the phone and call someone? What’s with all this texting and Tweeting and FaceBooking? Well, friends, I’m here to – once again – help you understand it all.

I’m not saying I’m a social media expert by any means. I’m just throwing my opinion out there, as usual, and you can do with it what you will.

I feel as though people misunderstand the point of social media. It’s not meant to replace face-to-face communication; although some people may use it that way. I think it’s meant to augment it. There is so much technology available today that allows us to instantly share pieces of our everyday life, for better or for worse. We can snap a picture of our dog on our phone and immediately share it on Facebook and Twitter, and almost as soon after get comments and shares on our content. It’s a very faced paced way of communicating, and many people don’t (or won’t) grasp the scope of how beneficial it can be.

For example, I got my current part-time job because of this blog and my presence on Twitter. I also didn’t have any skeletons in my Google searches, which is a big help. But my boss was able to see my personality through my social profiles before she even met me. The other side of this, though, is that you create a personal brand, whether you like it or not. Putting content out on a social channel may not seem like a big deal, but you have to remember that anyone can find you. This includes potential employers. If you’re in high school, this obviously isn’t’ as important as if you’re a recent grad or even in your mid-20s, but it’s definitely something to consider. How do you want to present yourself to the world? Sure, posting that picture of yourself drunkenly passed out in a trash can at 3am seemed funny at the time, but unless you’re careful (and have your privacy settings in check), that could go everywhere you don’t want it to be.

Connecting with people is another pro for social media. Think about how easily you can find people you went to kindergarten with using a simple search tool on Facebook. You can share personal milestones with friends and family. Let Aunt Susie know you ran the Boston Marathon yesterday and finished…she doesn’t have to know the time. And she just as easily give you kudos back. Of course, nothing beats face to face visits, or even phone calls, but when you’re super busy, like me, its an extremely helpful tool to have around.

Overall, I feel social media is going to become a bigger part of our lives than anyone knows right now. We are such a mobile society that we can’t help but use it – we just need to make sure we keep it in check and don’t let it completely take over our lives.

%d bloggers like this: