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Archive for August 9th, 2009

A while back I stumbled across TweetingTooHard.com, a website that gives people grief for the dumb-ass things they say on Twitter. One tweet (gah! kill me!) caught my attention a few days ago, wherein some LA douche says, “The recession JUST got personal. Found out the value of the home I’m supposed to inherit next year is down by $600k!”

Nice. Unemployment is at 9.5 percent. Everybody I know is taking a pay cut, not working on Friday, and generally soiling themselves week to week wondering how long they will have a job. And for this moron it JUST got personal.

I must admit that I have been doing OK in this downturn. Unlike almost every agency or production house I have ever worked for, my eggs aren’t all in one basket.  I work for several shops that, individually, I know are scrambling every day to pay their leases and their people. But lil ol me? The balance of working for all these shops, with one up, and one down…it seems to even out. In no way is it a banner year for LivelyExchange, but it’s nobody’s banner year.

And then, as much as I hate to be one of those assbags who say “This recession just got personal!” …well, the recession just got personal. By the way, I also hate to be one of those assbags who say, “I hate to one of those assbags who say…”

Anyway, a really nice girl who I knew at the Nazi internment camp web marketing firm last year also Tunneled to Freedom and got a creative management job at a renowned local ad agency. And like a true friend, she started sending me writing gigs: a print ad and a wikipedia article. And things were looking bright. They were small gigs, and I undercharged for them, but I was relationship-building. Who knew where this might lead?

Who am I kidding? We know where this is leading! Last Friday an envelope arrived in the mail and, right away, I knew something was up. This just didn’t feel like a check.  And, by gum, it weren’t. It was a letter full of words like: “difficult decision…no longer able to operate…liquidating assets… unsecured creditors…chapter 7…” and so on. I had a morbid thought: with all of these choice keywords, this was like a perfectly optimized web article about bankruptcy!

But that’s where the laffs ended. I was officially out $170.00, my super-nice friend was out of a job, and somebody’s life work in building an advertising agency was in the crapper.

What’s the upshot in this tale? IS there one? My faith tells me there must be one. Because as much as I hated working at that Soviet gulag web marketing agency, I made solid connections. And I learned certain functions that now make up about a quarter of my income.  So, much good came of a crap situation.  I believe the same to be true in this instance.

But for right now, let me say that if you need a skilled graphic artist or creative services manager, your boy Lively can hook you up. In times like these, we Bataan death march web marketing firm survivors have to stick together. And, as we learned from the Simpsons, stickin’ together is what good waffles do!

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