INSPIRED BY VITALY POTSELUEV
1. You know how it goes: someone will randomly ask what you would do if you won a million dollars and you give a basic answer. Well, here's my exact answer!
$500,000 - pay off all my debts, purchase a car, travel the world and purchase a house complete with a Michael Jackson room that contains tiles that light up, Billie Jean-style! The rest? Invest, invest, invest!
$150,000 - to my parents, for whatever they'd like to purchase
$100,000 - to my sister, for whatever she'd like to purchase
$100,000 - to be split between all my family members and some very good friends
$100,000 - to be split between all the Humane Societies and animal rescue shelters in my neighborhood, as well as the ASPCA and Clearwater Marine Aquarium in Florida
$25,000 - Michael Jackson memorabilia
$7,000 - Dermalogica skin care products
$5,000 - a lifetime supply of Snapple
$5,000 - a lifetime supply of lollipops and candy
$5,000 - to be spent on gift cards for restaurants, gas, recreation, etc.
$2,000 - open a tea shoppe
$1,000 - a beautiful, custom-made jukebox
*TOTAL = $1,000,000! :)
*Subject to change, of course . . .
2. If I traveled to a country wherein nobody spoke English, I would try to point and make gestures that would help people understand what I'm trying to say. I would also go to a bookstore and purchase a translation guide, then go to the nearest coffee shop to see if I could make a friend who knows how to speak some English. Just because I'm in a country full of people who do not share my native tongue does not mean I should leave as soon as possible. Rather, I would try to learn the language, learn how to appreciate the culture, and do my best to make friends. I might get a little discouraged at times because communication is so important, but I would keep telling myself to make it a worthwhile experience so that upon my departure, I could say that I learned a lot not only about the country, but also about myself.
Vitaly's original writing prompt: "1. What would you do with 1 million of USD? 2. What would you do, if you have appeared in country, where nobody speaks English?"
INSPIRED BY: VITALY POTSELUEV
If my last post was a little too self-helpy and serious, this post is for you. I'm callin' it Round II.
If you want to become successful and well-known and you're from a super small town, here are ten things you should do:
1. Learn how to create animal balloons. People in small towns love animal balloons. Plus, if you learn how to make a dolphin animal balloon, you'll be golden.
2. Purchase a case of chalk and spend a full day writing your name on the sidewalks outside area businesses. Proceed to ignore all angry phone calls from business owners.
3. Offer to teach little kids how to whistle. Soon you'll become known as the Town Whistler (or something like that), and then you can start charging tuition.
4. Be sure to order milk every single time you eat at a restaurant. And then order soda. Make sure everyone sees you pour the soda into your glass of milk. Drink it and be proud. Yes, keep drinking it. Pretend it's a watered-down rootbeer float. Yum!
5. Open an ice cream stand and don't sell ice cream.
6. Contact your local art gallery and ask if they are interested in exhibiting your second grade artwork. Stick figure family members rule.
7. Light a candle, let it burn (Usher-style), dip your fingers into the wax and walk around like a totally new version of Edward Scissorhands.
8. Call your local newspaper and ask them to write a story about your new ice cream stand, which happens to serve Milk Soda.
9. Don't yodel. Whatever you do, don't yodel.
10. Do not listen to a word I say. In fact, don't read this blog. What are you doing here, anyway?
Holy crapoly! Can I add a number 11 to a Top 10 list? I just want to say that I was kidding about number 10. I think you should continue to read this blog during your lunch break, in between television commercials, or on your mobile device that is suffering from low battery life as a result of playing Angry Birds.
I like the black and yellow Angry Birds, just in case you care. But you probably don't, unless you're a Steelers fan.
INSPIRED BY: VITALY POTSELUEV
So you live in a small town, where everybody knows everybody and nobody gets away with nothin' (hey, you gotta love that small town talk!). You work at a small town job, drive a small town car, shop and eat in the same small town places. Problem? You want to go Billy Joel on everyone and become an "Uptown Girl" (apologies to all you handsome men out there).
But how do you become successful in a town full of people who just go about their small town business? Good question. And a good challenge indeed.
Your first step should be to ask yourself what you're good at and how that talent makes you marketable. If your fashion sense is on fi-yaaaaaaaaa (that's "fire," for those small town folk, hehe), consider starting a local business in which you help high schoolers pick out outfits for the first day of school, dances, and other special events. If you have an 80gb iPod full of music, consider reaching out to people who need music recommendations and become a human version of Pandora. If you are a pro at creating encaustic artwork, try to sell your pieces to people in the newspaper who just got married or celebrated an anniversary. Nothing says "Congratulations!" like encaustic paint, which is one of the longest-lasting mediums in the history of art. If you cleverly make the connection between encaustic paint and love "standing the test of time," people are going to bite that bait and swallow hard.
My advice: As long as you know what you're doing, do it. Just don't make up a talent or try to make your living by becoming an impersonator, okay? I'm sorry, but there will never be another Michael Jackson.
Your small town essentially matches a rather cliche phrase: "Start small." Use that to your advantage. Learn how to work on a small scale so that when you begin to make a name for yourself, the big scale doesn't seem intimidating. If need be, find a piece of notebook paper and make a list of everything you want to achieve, and give yourself a reasonable deadline so that you are that much more inclined to make things happen.
The more you begin to accomplish, the more confident you'll become. That confidence is just what you need to help conquer the fear that may be lingering in the back of your mind. If it makes you feel any better, I have that fear, too; I wonder if a small town girl like me can become a well-known writer who gets recognized in a big city.
The answer, by the way, is yes. And do you want to know why? Because we're all from small towns. Some small towns are just smaller than others, really. We're all born and raised in communities wherein many people know our names, but an hour outside that community, you can bet that you're just another person walking alongside the street.
Join me in changing that.
Oh, and make sure that you never trash talk that small town of yours if things end up working out for you. That town will always be the place you called home before you became well-known. ;)
Vitaly's original writing prompt: "I want you to express your mind about how to become
sucessfully and widely know being a simple person from small town. It doesn't matter who you are and where do you live."
I take requests!
Let's get jiggy with it. Na na na na na na na, na na na na na na!