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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

These Interesting Times

There's an ominous Afghan proverb which goes, "May you live in interesting times." I woke up thinking about this proverb this morning, after spending yesterday brainstorming with various clients, helping them create buzz-worthy marketing strategies for their various endeavors: a new energy drink and an up-and-coming singer/songwriter, among others. The musician and I were discussing Auto-Tone The News' breakout (and hilarious) hit, "Bedroom Intruder" (did you know that song got so many hits it made the Top 40? Britney Spears is all, 'ruh-roh...'), and that got me thinking about Lana Del Rey and her sexy-as-hell song, "Video Games," ( (I might have more than a little girl-crush on Lana; don't give me that look, that girl is fine as hell. But, I digest.) Ms. Del Rey is set to open at a very chic club here in NYC tomorrow night; she sold out said club in 4 minutes, because of a video on youtube that got, to date, almost one million hits. A very simple, yet incredibly effective video.
What both of those songs got me thinking about is: we're living in a very weird time. (That was such an incredibly obvious statement that I should have my own crap show on MSNBC. ) There's 16 million unemployed people out there--hopefully soon to be joined by many current members of Congress--watching their way of life drift out to sea; the zeitgeist is a primordial soup of fear, rage, debt, foreclosure, Justin Bieber one knows what comes next. You turn on TV, and all the shows are headed back to the safety of the past. Who wouldn't rather curl up with Mad Men and a martini, than think about the (unknown) future...?
Well actually: me. And so should you! The future is what we make of it. Auto-Tone The News and Lana Del Rey are using the zeitgest to reinvent themselves...and they're making bank off of it. You should be too.
You can choose to be terrified by the horrors of a new day... or relish the exciting times we live in. You think people in the 1960s weren't terrified by The Bomb...or the implications of Civil Rights...or LBJ? You think the '60s was fun with all those damn, dirty hippies running around? (Personally, yes to free love, but not so super thrilled with all the crunchy kids running around barefoot, listening to The Dead.) Women in the 1950s got hissed at on the street for wearing pants fer Chrissake. And the horrible make-up and hair products they had back then. And everybody looked so chunky. Do not want!
So. Here's my point(s): 1) Stop whining and 2) as Alan Kay said, "The best way to predict the future is to invent it." We do live in interesting times...and that's lucky for all of us.

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