thank-you

9 surefire ways to never receive another favor

An INC.article about gratitude was published today which I particularly appreciate.

You see, in the past few months, I’ve had an influx of accepting the responsibility of watching the pets of others (mainly, those of roommates).

I was much more willing to help the one who actually asked me if I would watch her dog than I was about lending a helping hand to the chick who disappeared for a week, leaving behind a flea-infested cat who had no food or water.

The girl who neglected her cat is, in fact, a certifiably, completely coo-coo for cocoa puffs, off her rocker, bat shit crazy kind of crazy. When she left Thunder (her cat) without any of the necessities required for his survival over Memorial Day Weekend, I wasn’t surprised. She’d already clearly shown that she was not concerned with the well being of her pet. Pushing the responsibility of your animal off on another person without any notice is, in itself, wildly inappropriate. Taking off without even asking if that person would be home to watch the cat and leaving the animal without any food or water and locked on a porch is just sick. To keep him alive, I purchased 2 bags of cat food and replenished his water until she returned. When asked to be reimbursed for the cat food I’d purchased, Rachael’s response was “I didn’t ask you to get him food. He’s an outdoor cat. He doesn’t need food.” (By the way, if anyone else is confused about this, just because you have a cat that goes outside doesn’t mean it suddenly has the instincts of a feral hunter. It’s safe to say that your indoor/outdoor cat is going to be relying on the food you give it for the remainder of its’ life, unless it has to survive strictly in the wild again. That’s how it works.)

Ultimately, as you may have guessed, she was unwilling to reimburse me for the “unnecessary” cat food purchase. Which is fine, as this was also expected. I didn’t care for these animals because of a compensation package. I did these things as a citizen of the universe, a person who believes that you should care and invest in the safe and healthy future of all living things. This is especially true if said living things are no longer capable of caring for themselves because we have “adopted” them and promised to keep them safe and healthy in our own self-fulfilling upper class captivity.

These 2 scenarios, one being a favor which was asked for and the other, an animal abuser who skipped town are in no way comparable to one another aside from the reality that a bit of gratitude would have been equally appreciated in both instances.

When someone does you a solid, be grateful.

Be genuinely grateful.

If you ever want a favor again.

Here are 9 easy ways to show a little gratitude and not come off like a spoiled brat.

9 Simple Ways You Can Show Appreciation

thank-you

Write It By Hand

An electronic thank you is ok for many…who will ultimately skim it, trash it, and move on. But if you take time and care to craft the perfect message of appreciation, why not write it nicely by hand? Finding a lovely card in the mailbox or on the desk is a nice surprise. And it increases the chance they’ll read your message with care.

Acknowledge an Absence

If someone goes on vacation or is out on sick or personal leave, that creates a vacuum. It is easy to be annoyed or resentful about the extra workload. Instead, happily pick up some of the slack, and when the person returns, tell them how much they were missed and that their particular contribution is important. They will work that much harder if they know others see and value their efforts.

Pick Up the Cup

A small gesture respecting someone’s comfort and convenience can mean a lot. If you’re heading by the break room, offer to take the other person’s empty coffee cup with you. If you’re dropping by accounting, offer to take their paperwork with yours. You’ll need to make sure the cup or file gets promptly to the appropriate destination, of course. The gesture requires little additional effort for you, but removes a burden for them and makes their day just a bit happier.

Give It Back

People often borrow small things on the spur of the moment—a pen, a stapler, a book, etc.—with the intention of returning them. But so many times one gets busy and forgets. The lender is stuck without a tool they need, and feels inconvenienced and annoyed. It only takes a moment to return an item you borrowed when you’re done with it.

Clean It Up

On a busy day, it is really tempting to leave your dishes in the break room sink or your files piled on the conference room table. You’ll come back and handle it in a few minutes…and five hours later, the mess is still there. Schedule 10 minutes into your lunch or meeting time so you can pick up after yourself. It shows everyone else you respect and appreciate their right to use the common spaces, too.

Offer Public Praise

It feels good to be told, “You did an awesome job” or “You look great today.” It feels even better to hear it in front of other people. Look for opportunities to pay small compliments at meetings, or in the hallway. Others will likely chime in, which exponentially increases the recipient’s pleasure.

Give Them a Do-Over

Even the best of us make mistakes, and slip-ups come in all flavors from saying the wrong thing to missing a deadline to clicking “send” too soon. Everyone deserves the chance at an occasionaldo-over so they can try to get back on track. Show people that you trust them to make things right.

Celebrate the Milestones

Birthdays are just the beginning. Work anniversaries, getting engaged, welcoming a child, successfully opening a new location—personal and professional milestones are important. Your colleagues probably don’t expect to be showered with gifts, but everyone likes when others remember the milestones and stop to say “congratulations” or “many happy returns!”

Leave a Lagniappe

lagniappe is a small, inexpensive gift. Drop one on a co-worker’s desk when you see them having a hard day: a flower, an origami crane, a hand-drawn doodle, or a smiley face on a post-it. Any small gesture can make a big difference.

 

Alternatively, choosing to avoid these 9 acts is a surefire way to guarantee you don’t receive any more favors, so if nothing else, you do have options…

Cheers!

 

Featured Image -- 3582

America, You’ve Given Your All but You’re Nothing

Originally posted on BITCHTOPIA:

after Allen Ginsberg’s America

America is tired and goes home without her shoes that night.
Wiping off eyeliner with the back of her small hands, she figures
she is getting too old for this shit.
America: 1 a.m. and a dollar short.
America’s dress keeps slipping down from off her shoulders.
America,
being catcalled from the cars of her would-be fathers,
feels her heart bursting in air and cannot take the breaths to calm down–
America forgot to take her Xanax today
and the bus stop closes in around her delicate frame
like the fist her hands can’t seem to make anymore.
Her soul has been slipping through her passive fingertips, limp wrist.
America keeps her bus pass crumpled in her bra
so that she can move mountains when she takes it out for show.
(America hates her big tits. America is ready to stop growing.)
America finds the bus…

View original 236 more words

Twitter Tip Tuesday

Screenshot_8_13_13_2_48_PM

The following advice comes from one of my top resources, blog.rivaliq.com.

Basic and wildly beneficial tactics that you can implement in just 5 devoted minutes each day? i’ll take it.

Be sure to check out many other articles on social media, digital communications and analytic monitoring methods on blog.viraliq.com!

Is your company active on Twitter? If you answered yes, then good for you. If you answered no, then you have to get with the program! Twitter is essential to your marketing strategy. Don’t believe me? Here are some statistics and facts that will have you running to your Twitter account before you can say “follow me”.

The Numbers

  • There are 554,750,000 active users on Twitter
  • 460,000 people sign up for Twitter every day
  • There are 400 million tweets a day
  • On average, there are 9,100 tweets per second
  • 24% of people check their feed more than twice a day

Screenshot_8_13_13_2_41_PM

What this means to you:

From the numbers above, it’s crystal clear that a ton of people are spending a lot of time on Twitter. With such an active user base, you have the potential to market your product or service to millions of people – for free! Developing an effective Twitter outreach plan allows for an increase in brand awareness and consequently, an increase in sales. Be sure to take advantage of the millions of people in the Twitterverse – they could be dreaming of your product, but just don’t know it yet.

The Business Facts

  • 77% of top 100 companies are on Twitter
  • 70% of small businesses are on Twitter
  • 33% of Twitter users follow a brand
  • In the last two years there has been a 663% increase in users asking for business recommendations
  • 50% of shoppers have made purchases based on recommendations found through a social network
  • 79% of Twitter users are more likely to recommend brands they follow
  • 67% of Twitter users are more likely to buy from brands they follow

Screenshot_8_13_13_2_45_PM

There is a direct correlation between following on Twitter and making that cash money!

What this means to you:

These statistics are black and white - there is a direct correlation between following on Twitter and sales. If this isn’t reason enough to get active on Twitter, I’m not sure what is. If you haven’t already started coming up with a plan to increase your brand awareness on Twitter, the time to start was yesterday (but today will also do).

From the numbers above, it’s crystal clear that a ton of people are spending a lot of time on Twitter. With such an active user base, you have the potential to market your product or service to millions of people – for free! Developing an effective Twitter outreach plan allows for an increase in brand awareness and consequently, an increase in sales. Be sure to take advantage of the millions of people in the Twitterverse – they could be dreaming of your product, but just don’t know it yet.

What you should be doing

  • Twitter engagement rates for brands are highest on Saturdays and Sundays, but only 19% brand tweets happen on these days
  • Engagement is 200% higher for tweets that include image links
  • Engagement is 17% higher for tweets that contain less than 100 characters
  • The retweet rate is 86% for tweets that contain links
  • 92% of engagement with brand’s tweets come in the form of link clicks
  • Tweets that ask followers to retweet have a 12x higher retweet rate than those who don’t (but only 1% of brands actually ask)

What this means to you:

The research has been done for you. Apply the information learned from these statistics into your own Twitter strategy.

  1. Don’t neglect Twitter on the weekends – just because fewer people are working, doesn’t mean they aren’t checking their Twitter stream.
  2. Include links to images.
  3. Less is more – don’t make your tweets to long.
  4. Include links in your tweets.
  5. Don’t be shy to ask your followers to retweet.

There are many resources out there that provide great information on Twitter best practices. a thousand words”. One of the best I’ve come across is from Search Engine People. It provides statistics, best practices, and the demographics of Twitter uThis post on 10 Twitter Best Practices, by Michael Brito is a great place to start. Infographics are also a great resource for information. As the saying goes, “a picture is worthsers.

Insights, courtesy of RivalIQ (who I am an instant fan of, btw.)

Start using some of these tactics, maybe 2 a week, nothing major and see how your network worth, engagement and interactions improve. Once the results can be seen, you’ll have no problem building a Twitter profile for your business that will be a constant source of lead generation, website traffic and credible online presence.

Oh, I almost forgot the most IMPORTANT tip.

Men, women, children, horses, dentists, florists and CEO’s will flock to your twitter stream like a baby’s hand to candy after implementing this one vital strategy…

Do you want to know it?

Can you handle the truth this tip is about to unfold?

.

……

………

…………

……………

………………

…………………

Follow, retweet, favorite and add @gulkingazette on Twitter for an instant boom in traffic, interactions and engagement.

Gulkin-Gazette-Twitter

Thanks for hanging out.

Be sure to leave your Twitter handle in the comments so I can follow your optimized feed!

‘Jem and the Holograms’ Movie (It’s really fucking happening)

It’s really happening.

As a matter of fact, it has been happening.

Jem: The Movie

Go ahead.

Breathe it in.

Jem and the Holograms will be directed by John Chu (check out the project’s website), starring Aubrey Peeples of ABC’s Nashville and cult film Sharknado. The “Holograms” (members of Jem’s band, if you remember the radical ’80s cartoon) will include Stefanie Scott (No Strings Attached) as Kimber, Jem’s sister, Aurora Perrineau (Pretty Little Liars) as Shana and Hayley Kiyoko (Velma in two Scooby Doo! films) as Aja.

This cast photo went up Thursday:

jem.and.the.holograms.cast

JEM: THE MOVIE

Life instantly feels more hopeful.

As if the lifelong dream of Jem: The Movie coming to fruition wasn’t enough, I’ve also discovered a pretty impressive marketing tactic in the crowdsourcing approach to the creative process.

“Jason Blum (the Paranormal Activity mastermind and low-budget impresario), music mogul and No. 1 Belieber Scooter Braun and G.I. Joe: Retaliation director Jon M. Chu are partnering with toymaker Hasbro (the Transformers and G.I. Joe franchises) for the project, the trio announced Thursday.

To help dust off the nearly 30-year-old property (read: ensure a built-in audience), they’re hitting up fans.

“We want to invite you into our process and help us make our next movie,” Chu says in the video. “From writing music, to designing costume, even casting — whatever it is, we want you to be part of our creative team. Kind of like Kickstarter, but instead of asking for money, we’re asking for your creativity.”

-Mashable

Who’s coming with me to the premier?

Citizen Cope “Bullet & a Target”

Been a while since we’ve had a Little Ditty.

Enjoy this awesome pie of live Citizen Cope performance, “Bullet & A Target”

With lyrics deserving to be quoted in entirety.

“Bullet And A Target”

Mr. Dali Lamas
Another sister’s shootin’ heroin tomorrow
Amputees in Freetown
Sierra Leone’s
The church wasn’t honest
The state put the youth in a harness
Creatin’ hostility among us
Teacher said no college
Still the kid’s gotta get a check with a couple commas
People wanna bomb us
More people gotta scatter and run from us
You can blame it on Zeus and Apollo and AdonisBut what you’ve done here
Is put yourself between a bullet and a target
And it won’t be long before
You’re pulling yourself away

But what you’ve done here
Is put yourself between a bullet and a target
And it won’t be long before
You’re pulling yourself away

I’ve been knowing her for years
I’ve been seeing her for years
She got dark, dark wavy hair
With a voice like she just don’t care
She got a skirt with a halter top
She’s got a dad who never gave a fuck
She drinks a beer with a malted top
She got knocked up in a pickup truck
But she got engaged when she was nineteen
To this dude who was acting insane
Had a .45 that he always cleaned
Said one day one day one too many days
Now she ducked and she ran away
Never to be heard from, never to be seen
I check the cover of a magazine
I’m just wondering how, just wondering how

But what you’ve done here
Is put yourself between a bullet and a target
And it won’t be long before
You’re pulling yourself away 

A bullet and a target 

Between a bullet and a target

 

Living Single: Tricky Questions and Trepidation

For the second installment of the Living Single Series, I’m steering clear of significant challenges and survival tactics. Rather, I’d like to touch on the definition of tricky questions, resulting trepidation and if dating and worth it have any correlation.

Per usual, please provide feedback if you’ve got some to offer. And if I know you, chances are ya’ just might.

Climbing up the proverbial corporate ladder has been a welcomed focus. I love my job now more than any position before, and it’s not just the fancy office. Although, my heart did skip a beat to see my nameplate next to the door. Work leaves little time to get tied up in even remembering that meeting cute boys is nothing more than a cherished, distant memory, washed up on the shore somewhere in Delray Beach.

 

The most promising young men I’ve met since moving here have all been my friends children and under 10 years of age. Please don’t judge the pride I basked in for just a moment after finding myself on an intriguing journey, taken through synthetic window mastery and new natural wonder discoveries with a handsome boy old enough to rent a car.

As potential excitement began to brew, so did curiosity, and well, we all know how the cat ended up. I asked what I had thought, until now, was a very straight forward question: “How many girls are you romantically involved with, currently?”

Nothing wrong with that question, right? It’s fair and rational. The response I got… not so much.

“To answer how many I’m currently romantic with is tricky.”

What? How is that tricky, in any way? I keep getting this advice, and it is appreciated by the way, I guess. However, it’s always revolving around how I need to adapt and adjust, how dating is a game I need to play and play well. How exhausting. Just typing it is exhausting. And, frankly, is it even worth it? How could one possibly consider dating when the one they’re considering wouldn’t even know whether or not they were actually dating. That sounds awful. Looks like I’ll be sticking to spending time with my plants and platonic comrades for now, at least until I can find less complicated questions to ask.

frustated-woman

Pussy Riot: Members Freed to Save 2014 Sochi Olympics

Pussy Riot members Nadya (Nadezhda Tolokonnikova) and Masha (Maria Aloykhina) stand united in a Moscow district court . The Russian punk rock activists completed 22 months of a 2 year sentence, released early due to ridicule from around the globe threatening the turnout of the upcoming 2014 Olympics in Sochi.

While imprisoned, the acts of moral indecency towards the prisoners were so severe that it inspired both women to launch a movement in Russia, now focusing their activism on prisoners’ rights.

“You cannot frighten someone who has been to Russian prison,” Tolokonnikova says.

“The authorities have made a grave mistake by jailing us. We emerged from prison even stronger and more resolute”

The Pussy Riot members were charged with hooliganism after a 40-second performance in the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow that was critical of President Vladimir Putin. See “A Punk Prayer”: http://bit.ly/1exEAlo

Putin released the members of Pussy Riot, as part of a still undefined Amnesty Decree from the Russian parliament in what’s  considered to be a last-minute scramble to save the Winter Olympics. 

“This selective amnesty was not an act of humanism. It was only aimed at reducing tensions in relations with the west,” Tolokonnikova said. “It happened because Putin is afraid that Olympic Games in Sochi will be boycotted.”

pussy-riot

Pussy Riot

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova walks to her news conference at Dozhd TV

#FREEPUSSYRIOT

X. http://bit.ly/1iyy5zB

X. http://huff.to/1cX7g2p

X. http://slate.me/KcLAbG

Living Single: How to Survive Strep Throat

Welcome, the ‘Living Single’ series. I’ve moved from the comfortable sleepy little beach town I called home to a big old city that is, while in the same state, completely foreign to me. While it’s great to remember the feeling of having my own apartment, with my own patio, plants and complete control of playlists, living single presents it’s own set of challenges.

Justy recently, I almost died.

The emergency room doctor wanted to do a spinal tap. My fever had raged on at something like 102.7 for five days.

Finally, the fever broke. Diagnosis: Strep Infection.

Now, don’t get it confused, I’m a self sufficient lady, but I’m talking awful fever, can’t move, throw me in a river, unimaginable sick.  I’m alone in a new town, no family nearby, so I had to get seriously resourceful. If you’re also living single, and are coming down with a sickness, here are some quick tips on getting through it.

Surviving Strep Throat: A Living Single How To

1. Family, Friends, Roommates or Neighbors

Family is an obvious here, but if you’re like me and far from family, find friends, neighbors, roommates, bell boys, whoever you can, to stock you up with gatorade, medicine and regular check ins if you’re symptoms are getting worse.

2. Jam Out

Music helps to constantly release healthy endorphins. This is at a low level, of course, but if you’re miserably sick, avoid silence. Put on something you love, and you’ll heal faster. (It’s science)

3. No Nyquil Fueled Text Messages

I know, you feel like you’ve been hit by a bus then thrown over the freeway underpass. You feel alone and start romanticizing the past. Stop it!

It’s just the Sudafed and sleep meds. Don’t text any exes in your miserable state.

You’ll feel better soon.

Thanks for tuning in to the first Living Single Series.

1511196_10153644921685247_217216808_n

Happy New Year 2014!

 

Authors And Alcohol: The Paris Years

These three authors are literary greats and they were all present in Paris at the same time,

enjoying a lifestyle of creative endeavor and alcohol…

The great and the good of historical literary figures seem more often than not to have had a fairly intimate relationship with alcohol. It appears to have just gone with the territory. What follows are a list of some of the most influential writers who were all present in post WW1 Paris and couldn’t say no to a drink.

F. Scott Fitzgerald

Author of the almost unsurpassable The Great Gatsby, Francis (that’s what the F stood for) was a heavy drinker from early in his college years. His work and he himself are seen as symbols of the Jazz Age and with good reason. Not only did he come up with the term, but his lifestyle and the people he surrounded himself with in 1920s Paris were absolutely indicative of the artistic revelry.

Unfortunately his drinking was epic and led him into seriously poor health during the 30s. He suffered from tuberculosis though biographers do argue over whether or not this was truly the case, with some speculating it was used as a cover for his drinking problems. Fitzgerald finally succumbed in 1940 to a second, and huge, heart attack. He was 44.

Ernest Hemmingway

Present in the revelry of Fitzgerald’s Jazz Age was his good friend Ernest Hemmingway. The two shared an intense and vivacious friendship. Becoming part of the ‘Lost Generation’ a term he popularized during his Paris years the abandon of which he and his cohorts’ lives were lived is no secret. And after being introduced to James Joyce the pair became well known for their ‘alcoholic sprees’.

Hemmingway’s love of a beverage turned to alcoholism in his later years and was compounded by other health and mental issues. The result in 1961 was after treatment for severe depression and release from hospital Hemmingway took his own life.

James Joyce

Renowned for his works that include Ulysses and Finnegans Wake Joyce is undoubtedly one of the most significant writers of the 20th century. Growing up in Dublin he was often found boozing and causing plenty of trouble, seemingly being quick to anger and always involved in an altercation of sorts. After two such instances, one involving a pistol being fired at him by the student he lived with Joyce headed to Europe.

He lived in Trieste and Zurich for the next period of his life and after 16 years was invited to Paris by Erza Pound, a friend of both Fitzgerald and Hemmingway. Joyce stayed for 20 years. During his time there his lifestyle continued as he’d become accustomed and he died after surgery for a perforated ulcer in 1941.

Attached Images:

When not trying to live like a Parisian author of the Jazz Age, Sam Michaels writes for Find Me A Gift, taking a particular interest in their exceptional range of wine gifts.

 

GulkinGazette:

Embedding Images from Instagram

Originally posted on WordPress.com News:

We know many of you document and share your experiences with Instagram, so we’re excited to announce that you can now embed images from Instagram on your blog.

As with other embeds, it’s quite easy. First, copy the image’s URL from your web browser’s address bar while viewing the image:

Then, while you are editing a post or page, simply paste the URL on its own line:

http://instagram.com/p/QI9cbtAdvW/

So for example, this text and URL:

will display this on your blog:

The URL automatically embeds the largest size of the image that fits into the content area. Alternatively, you can control the size of an image using shortcode. For example:

[instagram url=http://instagram.com/p/QI9cbtAdvW/ width=275]

embeds this image instead:

An image is automatically linked to the URL of its original Instagram page, so when readers click the image on your blog, they are taken to its full-size version.

It’s another quick and easy way to…

View original 5 more words

Pay Per Post, Babay!

BLOG IDEAS

BLOG IDEAS (Photo credit: owenwbrown)

 

The xenophobia ironed a pancake

 

 

 

Gravity

Planets are moving
To satisfy moons
Keeping gravity,
In check.
In tune.

The ocean is twirling
To nurture its’ sand
Hydrogen and oxygen
Secretly holding hands

Solar winds and satellites
Attracted in galactic tide
Cosmic carbon,
Constellations.
Elemental configurations.

As the sun brings a new day
To relieve a tired moon
I promise now and forever
To do the same for you