Celebrity Social Media Manager

Anatolian Food and Culture Festival

07/06/2010

For Mother’s Day my mother, who is often mistaken as my older sister, and I made our way down to Irvine to spend the day eating delicious kabob, watching cultural performances and buying trinkets from a slew of Turkish merchants at the Anatolian Food and Culture Festival.

The festival was equipped with culturally themed bounce houses for children, a mile-long wall of the chronology of Turkish history for the elders, historically dressed festival hosts and, well, food- for me.

Get me near any kind of food and I’ll eat it. Get me to a food festival and, ladies and gentlemen, we have one over-stuffed, slightly paralyzed Mia.

After inducing cataclysmic paralysis, I decided that there was no way to digest all the goodness I had just eaten unless I kicked my feet up and enjoyed some traditional Turkish dance.

I looked kinda like these guys:

Ok, maybe not exactly, but you get the idea.

After a bit more shopping and wandering around aimlessly, it was time to head out. With memories of Istanbul ’06 near and dear to my heart, it was tough to finally call it a day.

Captive and Captivating

06/03/2010

Both captive and captivating, she waits. Her eyes reaching out from behind the steel, longing for what once was.

While the masses saunter past her, the sound of her infant calf grows faint and like the human idiomatic expressions of her kind, her memory serves her well.

Perhaps too well, for it would be easier to forget than to long for what shall never be again.

elephant SD zoo

Photography by Jordan Larrigan

Rinse and Repeat

06/02/2010

Work has been picking up, and while I am most certaintly NOT complaining in the least- especially “in this economy”- it has left me with little time to myself. I finally published a blogpost- after nearly a month!- which feels pretty nice, and am making time to be a bit more social and meet new, exciting people.

My schedule, although chaotic, has not changed. I get up at 6:30AM, head to class, head home to change for work , leave at noon and head into the office, where I stay until about 6, to get home at about 7, to eat, then do homework, then shower and hit the hay. Yes, I do realize that was one VERY long run-on, but I also found it appropriate for the theme of the post, no?

Look forward to the days when my schedule isn’t so…y’know…rinse and repeat.

Burning Buildings, Explosions and Car Chases, The World Stunt Awards

05/15/2010

I ventured over to the Paramount Pictures studios to attend the RedBull-sponsored Taurus World Stunt Awards last week and found, to my surprise, a large, tightly knit community of thrill-seeking stuntsmen. The open bar drink menu boasted names like; the whiskey based “Collision Course,” the Vodka and Redbull combo called “Firewalker,” and others that were clearly apropos for the theme of the night.

I met risky drivers, high-fallers, fire specialists and fighting doubles within moments of walking in. It wasn’t long before someone approached me asking “So, what stunts have you done?” and with an outright “HAA!” I stated, point to myself shamelessly, “this girl doesn’t even do roller-coasters, nonetheless jump from the 5th story to land on the windshield of a vehicle!”

The night concluded with the awards ceremony for awards like “Best High Work,” “Hardest Hit,” “Best Stunt with Fire,”  and “Best Work with a Vehicle.” All of which I was extremely impressed by. Although there are stunt-pads and much coordination involved, the bodies hitting shards of glass from 80 ft in the air or the woman hanging from the ledge of a tall building, are all real people risking their safety for the enjoyment of people like you and me. Unless you’re one of them, wherefore you are owed a round of applause. ::claps::

I’ve been a busi-bee.

04/13/2010

Yeah, OK, so that was kind of corny.

In any case, I decided that I had to take a quick break from the madness that has been my life to post an entry. Things have been really great lately, business is keeping me busy (hence the title) and the close of the semester has been harvesting quite a bit of stress. Regardless, my spirits are high and while my energy is low, I’m managing to stay sane!

I’m in the process now of changing career lanes. I’m still on the same road, with more or less the same emphasis, but I’m leaning more in the direction of Social Media representation as the means by which I pay the bills.

I’ve been reading a lot of white papers and case studies lately by companies like Burson-Marsteller, Cohn and Wolfe and InkFoundry. I’ve also been looking in to internships at the aforementioned as well.

So, such has been my life. Late nights researching social media, putting off laundry day until it can wait no longer, and balancing financial independence with my last year at Pepperdine. Life is great.

The Future of Journalism

03/03/2010

The over-used and under-examined claim that Journalism is dead is one that I find both disheartening and extremely closed minded. In a day and age where nearly anything is possible, many are claiming that our free speech publications will no longer exist? So where is Journalism going if it isn’t dying?

Journalism isn’t dying, it is merely taking on a new shape; adapting to the ever-changing environment that we have created.

The Internet.

The first of two major issues in the industry is that with the emergence of limitless internet connection, blossoming social networks and an affinity for instant gratification among nearly every demographic, micro-blogging sites like Twitter, photo hosting sites like Flickr and Twitpic and hosts like WordPress are giving everyday citizens the ability to become citizen journalists.

Citizen Journalism is creating a new temperature for the industry; information is unbiased and honest, but the quality cannot be controlled. Because information is more readily available, and consumers are finding it to be convenient and unbiased, our traditional news sources are losing the following they once had.

The second major issue is we see today is that more and more people are finding their news on the Internet, but most of the papers are making money from their print advertisements. This, being completely ineffective, means the print newspapers will have to adapt to online endeavors and subsequently charge a fee for their offerings as well as make money from direct-targeted online advertisements. In order for it to be effective and efficient, however, each of the newspapers would have to implement this business model simultaneously and without wavering from the newly-set standard.

Just as technology gains momentum and adapts to our needs,

professions and skills must also adapt.

While picking up a bulky 4-section newspaper may not be completely convenient in our fast-paced lifestyles, it is the duty of learned Journalists to make moves to adapt to the needs of their readers.

Patrick Thornton, blog writer of The Future of Journalism, states very wisely that If you’re not willing to work on the Web, do more than write, get your hands dirty with code, blog, be a social media pro, etc, than journalism isn’t for you. Those currently working for publications should be hyper focused on making the same content available online as it happens in order to adapt to the changes in modern Journalism.

So, while most think Journalism is “dying,” I challenge you to explore the idea that yes, there are significant differences in the way we dole out news, but the change is both necessary and exciting. We need to take the future of journalism into consideration and initiate a renaissance of sorts. A rebirth of Journalism.

Letting Go of Possessions

02/25/2010

I have found that there are few things in life that can have a very profound affect on one’s life and values. For me, one of those

things happen to have been a house fire in which everything my family owned was destroyed. It’s been just a few days over 3 years since I learned some very valuable lessons about material possessions and appreciating the things I have.

My mother and I left for a movie, only to receive raving phone calls before the movie had time to even begin. There were sirens, people yelling and a rush of energy penetrating my ear as I slouched down in my seat to pick up the call.

While rushing through red lights and speeding around corners, my life was to be drastically altered. Everything I had known was up in flames. We pulled up at 8:11, the fire roaring ten feet above the roof and three fire department trucks surrounding the perimeter of our home.

They had brought my cat back to life and handed her to me. My mother told me to find an emergency vet that was open and I sped off in her car, too stunned to shed tears, too shocked to function properly. After $3k and 3 nights in an oxygen tank, the cat lived, and we were all safe. That was the most important part, but 90% of our belongings were either charred or too badly smoke-damaged to warrant saving- and at first, that was hard to get over.

For the next two weeks I lived out of a hotel, refusing to unpack my bag until I found a new apartment. Everything I owned could fit in my suitcase.

The weeks proceeding were…well, horrid. Filling out paperwork, dealing with insurance, claiming and labeling items by value, brushing the ashes from old pictures in an album and letting go of memoribilia I had brought back with me from my round-the-world travels just a few months prior.

It was quickly that I learned to appreciate the things I did have and stopped dwelling on the things I was missing. I began to let go of the physical things and hold tight to those that really mattered. My goals, memories, friends, family and passions.

Sometimes I find myself staring at a flame. I catch myself in a trance, thinking about how something so small can affect us so greatly.

Horse Back Riding The Morongo Valley

02/09/2010

I’m a little bitter. Why you ask? Well, for nearly 3 years I’ve been telling myself…”Next weekend, I’m going to go horseback riding” and this weekend I finally did. Except…my horse was half-assed. Yes, that’s right people, I got stuck with a mule.photo courtesy of MuleRanch.com

Mules, if you haven’t seen one in person before- which I clearly had not- are the same size as a horse but have oversized ears and slumpy heads. Not so much the regal animal that the horse is. Bred from a male donkey and a female horse, Mules are thicker in stature, yet toned more like a horse. Easily confused by the untrained eye.

An equestrian I am not, but I really like riding horses. Did I mention that mules ride nothing like horses. Yes, they gallup, trot and neigh, but their actions happen at about a third of the speed.

Anyways, all in all the 4-hour “adventure ride” turned out well. We scaled the sides of valley ravines, crossed creeks of tumbling rocks and even side-swiped a cactus or two. Quite the adventure.

Power Outage

02/01/2010

Woke up this morning to the near-frozen vinyl floors beneath my feet and the crisp air hitting my body like a wall of great force. I quickly jumped back under the covers, wondering why the hell it was so cold. The joys of RV-ing have truly commenced.

Apparently, at some point last night the auxiliary battery died- causing the heat to shut off. Even after reading the owner’s manual, the cause of my glacial awakening goes unknown.

It is now nearly 1pm and I have refused to get up from bed for anything but to brush my teeth and grab a bowl of cereal. Oh, and to turn the heat back on. The radio is on Jill Fm, the “diva on the dial” playing everything from Backstreet Boys to the Moody Blues. Can’t figure out exactly what this “diva” is thinking with such a compilation.

Maybe this afternoon I’ll let the awning out, I can throw down a blanket outside, and grill some habanero and chicken bratwurst while taking in some sun. The campground we’re stay at- the O’Neill Regional Park- has horse trails, bike paths and hiking trails along the river and make for great ambiance.

I’ll also be nursing my bruised rib back to health…youch!

Until next time,

Mia

RV-ing The Trabuco Canyon

01/31/2010

The relentless traffic only further encouraged my anticipation. After heading south on the 405 to the 133 to the 241 and then through the narrow Trabuco Canyon, we found the perfect spot for the RV. The O’Neill Regional Park in the Santa Margarita Mountains boasted huge oak trees and grasslands that span more than 3,000 acres.

Our camp spot was partly shaded and looked over the Arroyo Trabuco (better known as Trabuco River). I couldn’t wait to eat. Note to self: Skipping breakfast before a road trip is not the best idea.

After recuperating from the bratwurst-induced food coma, we took the bikes out for a trail ride on the rocky shores of the Trabuco River. We trekked up a steep mountain filled with shoulder-high weeds and dry brush in search of a view of the entire canyon only to find ourselves at the edge of a highway.

Apparently we hadn’t travelled far enough east to avoid urban disturbances.

More tomorrow.

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