John and I FINALLY got around to getting my business cards reprinted. Well, not really reprinted–I ran out, so I just ordered another batch. Last time, we got them done at Sir Speedy. John spent hours at their copy center holding the designer’s hand. I mean, to be fair, the transition from an Adobe design file to something in hard print ha always been a challenging, tedious, confusing process. Complicate it further with communication using everyday (vs. trade-level) Chinese, and you’re pretty much doomed to fail. So anyway, the first batch was a disaster. The colors were all off, and the job was pricey as hell. This time, we went to a local print shop, interacted with a few middle men, and voila. My cards came out pretty close to the original design– still not perfect, but certainly good enough. And 100 cards only cost 45 yuan (less than 6 USD). John, aka Creative Director of Move the Brain Design Services, is now hard at work on other biz card projects. He designed one for our brother in-law Dan, who runs his own auto-detailing service–Addicted to Detail. This morning, I was on the phone back and forth with the printer/designer. After a lot of dumbing down on the phone, super slow IMing in Chinese (yeah, baby!), endless modifications to the software, and repeated uploads, I think we finally arrived on the same page. I do hope the cards come out well. We should get them tomorrow or the day after.
I wrote my first proposal this week for Move the Brain! That was fun, especially for an anal person like me. It was for that Cabot Chemical job that I mentioned earlier– the President of the company wanted some training with pronunciation, communication, and cultural shit. So I did a bunch of research on potential sources for picking up US cultural literacy… anyway, I spent forever on the proposal. Fortunately, I had the benefit of working on my awesome new laptop— so at least I didn’t suffer through random shutdowns and the like. Of course, I did spend three days installing all the software I needed, moving my files over, and searching for stupid Sony drivers (which aren’t posted on their website!). Fuckers. Back to the story though… Sheng (the President) liked my proposal. He just had two requests: 1) lesson plans one week in advance 2) a lower tutoring rate. The Chinese—they’re all about the negotiating. Everything and anything is up for debate. Gotta be ready for that… I emailed him my response. We’ll see where that goes….
Always waiting…. that goddamn Citigroup job. I emailed the consulting firm (who would hire me as their trainer, contracted to teach Citi), and Dan said the Citi Pres is reluctant… he may need some additional convincing from Citi HR and upper management. So we may not hear about the job until after the national holiday (October 1-7). Argh!
In other news, I’ve been doing some food prep lately. Honestly, I hate cooking (yes, food prep falls under cooking for me) but still, I’ll admit it’s a practical skill to have. So a few times this week, after John came home from the gym, I made sushi rolls and cooked pasta. I know, nothing fancy but hey, baby steps.
Oh! Exciting news! John discovered some of our beloved TV shows online. So, no more deprivation. We watched the first ep of Nip/Tuck season 2 last night. So good. Other shows are already in the pipeline: Newlyweds, Good Eats, and Trailer Park Boys. Yipee!
BTW, I watched/listened to a bunch of DNC speeches this week. That was fun. Check em out online at The Dem Convention. My new quote of the day (from Teresa Heinz Kerry): “There is a value in taking a stand whether or not anyone may be noticing and whether or not it is a risky thing to do. And if even those who are in danger can raise their lonely voices, isn’t more required of all of us, in this land where liberty had her birth?” Right on!
Oh and a great speech by Sen. Barack Obama. I especially like these lines: “In the end, that’s what this election is about. Do we participate in a politics of cynicism or a politics of hope? John Kerry calls on us to hope. John Edwards calls on us to hope. I’m not talking about blind optimism here—the almost willful ignorance that thinks unemployment will go away if we just don’t talk about it, or the health care crisis will solve itself if we just ignore it. No, I’m talking about something more substantial. It’s the hope of slaves sitting around a fire singing freedom songs; the hope of immigrants setting out for distant shores; the hope of a young naval lieutenant bravely patrolling the Mekong Delta; the hope of a millworker’s son who dares to defy the odds; the hope of a skinny kid with a funny name who believes that America has a place for him, too. The audacity of hope!”