Thursday, February 26, 2009

Getting It

I have long harbored a deep resentment for the phrase, "Get it." Seems like a harmless phrase, I know. But when I was working for a marketing company out of college, my boss would debrief us on sales pitches. If the meeting had gone well, he would invariably say, "It was great. The guy from [insert big company name here] is really smart. He really gets it."

And my boss, he would say "gets it" with such reverence, you would think that we were trying to sell string theory or something. In fact, my company organized intramural sports tournaments, and companies could pay a fee to put their logo on a banner, some equipment, and some t-shirts, etc., relating to the intramural sport, and participating colleges would put up the banner, use the equipment, award champs with the t-shirts, and hand out samples of the company's product. The marketing angle behind that was college students = discretionary income, and multiple impressions of a product at a place they visit twice per week (the rec center) results in increased brand awareness and sales among that population.

Not complicated. Okay, if it makes you feel better, it's really complicated, so you are really smart if you understand it.

The thing that really gets under my skin, though, is when I hear countless people dismiss opposing opinions because they believe the opposition just doesn't "get it."

Know what? It is, in fact, possible to learn the same facts, roll them around in your head a little, and come to a different conclusion. I'm not talking about the earth being round or gravity or anything like that. I'm talking about something like this. I can deem it a bit silly* and understand what it's about. It is possible.

I wonder if the people who accuse others of "not getting it" are also the people who were convinced that other kids were mean to them because those schoolyard bullies were "just jealous?"

*but no sillier than a ton of other lifestyle dreck that's out there.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Philosophical Question of Our Times (or maybe just mine)

I have combination skin. By that, I do not mean that my T-zone is a little oily and that the other patches of my face are a little dry. I mean that my T-zone produces enough oil to lubricate all of the gears in Big Ben for a year, and at the very same time my cheeks and neck could absorb the moisture of the Great Lakes and still be a bit parched.

Why does this happen? Why can't the oil just kind of roll on over to the dry spots? Seriously, it's like someone built little famine walls all over my face. Unless maybe there is a reason for the division? Maybe there's a civil war on my face, and the haves are not sharing natural moisture with the have nots in a bid to get them to shrivel up and die.

But I don't want parts of my face to shrivel up and die, so I have spent a chunk of my adulthood flitting from face cream to face cream to try and find something that addresses my myriad skin issues. I mean, honestly. You should not be getting pimples and wrinkles at the same time.

I realize I sound like the early part of one of those commercials featuring a Bright Young Thing declaiming the wonders Oxy or Biore or Roc or Dove. Know what the BYTs' secret is? GENETICS. At least the Proactiv commercials have the decency to offer photo shopped pictures of starlets with mini-mountain ranges of pimples as evidence of effectiveness.

After years of searching, though, I FINALLY found something that works for me. And I love it. Except for one niggling little detail. It smells a little bit -- just a little bit -- like sour milk. This is not a pleasant smell. I am not revealing the brand. But it rhymes with Ploddy Whop.*

So, what do I do? Do I go back to the itchy blotchy skin? Or deal with the smell?


Also important: if you know me personally and catch a whiff of slightly sour milk, please know that it is not some kind of Mommy side effect. If my kids spill milk on me, I will change my clothes. I promise.

*If I write a children's story, this is most assuredly going to be one of the characters' names.