"Keep a Journal: How else are you going to get a good look at who you were?"

Monday, January 12, 2009

Ever felt like you had words pent up inside you and you didn't know which to let out first?

Yeah, that...

And - I'm feeling a little frustrated at work.

We are in the midst of what would be our annual slowdown.

Except we didn't slow down...but management cut staffing levels over the holidays anyways. We are now about 7 days behind on our regular central stock replenishment picks, and almost TWENTY days behind on central stock product that is in storage trailers out in the yard.

I did try to stay on top of this situation...but I am only one man, after all.

I had to point out to Mr. Goodall that every hour I spend doing something other than those "trailer picks" puts the current backlog yet another day behind. I am getting thru all these...but it is taking wayyyyyyy longer than it should. I need help, and I'm not getting it...may have to go see Jeff or Amir.

Of course, the heavy snowfall we've had these past few weeks was no help at all. I'm relieved that it's mostly gone now.

I have discovered a trend. This trend coincides with one of my personal pleasures.

Choral music.

The old College Glee Club is making a comeback. Given that this is the age of YouTube, most of them have posted videos of their performances. Some of them sound excellent, despite the generally poor sound quality of YouTube's user-generated content. A few of the groups are leading the way and using YouTube as a promotional tool. They're selling albums...

If you want to see what I mean, use this search on YouTube's page: How to Save a Life a capella.

A couple of years ago, someone arranged The Fray's "how to save a life" for an a capella chorus. I don't know who did the original arrangement, but by now everyone has performed it. I like the Vassar Devil's version best; despite the poor audio, they do a decent rendition. I also like the Devil's version because they're one of the few groups that keeps the tempo of the original Fray single...most groups slow it down somewhat.

The Umass Dynamics (dyna-mikes?) don't have "how to save a life" in their repetoire. They did "cablecar (in over my head)" instead. I love listening to that number.

YouTube is user generated...and consumer driven.

Anything you want is on there...and some Artists have started to take advantage.

Take Jeff Dunham, for example; his second HBO Comedy Central special "Spark of Insanity" is available in its entirety (nearly) on YouTube - all for free! - divided into 10 minute clips.

Of course, if you'd like to watch the whole performance without interruption (and with bonus features) you could, say, buy the DVD... It's available at Amazon.com for about 10 bucks.

Jeff has sold a whooooole lotta copies of that DVD.

Even more surprising (and amusing) is Moosebutter...


They're a little comedy troupe from Provo,(?)Utah. They do "a capella comedy"...they do it at business seminars, mall openings, and county fairs...

They released a CD a few years back with a "Star Wars tribute to John Williams". A young aspiring videographer named Corey Vidal loved the tune when he heard it and contacted the group to ask if he could do a video for it.

They said "sure".

3.95 million hits later (as of Jan 12, 2009), the video got nominated for "best user-generated video" at the People's Choice Awards. Moosebutter got Corey to produce their own version of the video...featuring the current members of the group singing the song using the same layout - as opposed to Corey's version, in which he is lip-synching to all four parts of the album single.

Moosebutter's version of the video has been up about a month now...and has 210,000+ hits of its own. People outside of Utah actually know who Moosebutter is now...and they've only just begun.

Speaking of do-it yourself...

I found an air-hockey table on Craigslist for free. It works just fine but one of the legs is broken. I've been pondering for the past week how to fix that leg, or make up a new set of legs that won't break. I came up with a solution...now I need to put it into action. The table itself is plywood and plastic, but the legs were made of cardboard - no lie! - and I thought to myself; "I can do much better than that". The real problem has been the kids: they CAN'T WAIT...literally. I'm surprised they haven't broken it by now!

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