Archive | April, 2011

Reserved for:

30 Apr

Let me preface this post with the finale: Work this week was awesome!

I spent the week working on a product placement aka “celebrity seeding” project, where I scroll through celebrity gossip blogs looking for celebs wearing one of our shoe clients’ new line. This is both a fun and easy job–a bit time consuming since I have a list of about thirty blogs to scan dating back to March 1st, but I’d choose it over office work any day.

Although I’m primarily looking only at their feet, it’s hard not to read the headlines. I can recap more celebrity gossip than I can news for the past month and a half!

Another highlight to the work week was a Friday-afternoon, video world premiere and live show from Portugal. The Man. (Yes, there is a period in the middle of their name.) Originally from Alaska, the band now calls Portland, Ore. home, and was proud to release their new video and kick off their tour in the Rose City.

Two coworkers, a friend and I attended the premiere. We were instantly greeted by Entercom executives and shown to our front row, reserved table. Presented on a large projection screen, the video is gruesomely graphic aka “artistic” according to Portlanders, but showcases the band’s unique indie style and musical range. A three song set followed.

(NOTE: The video is not online yet, check back for a link soon!)

Catlin, me and Ali outside the Mission Theatre...excited!

Portugal. The Man

Inside the Mission Theatre...inches away from our seats just after the premiere.

Needless to say, the premiere and week in general were spent productively and in good company!


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Bilingual vs. Fluent

24 Apr

Is there a difference between being bilingual and fluent in another language?

I’m half Cuban. First American-born gen. And an English-as-a-first-language speaker. My resume currently reads, “bilingual in Spanish” and my Twitter bio lists “bilingual” as well. However, as I’m on the brink of completing internships, graduating college and interviewing for career positions, I want to perfect my resume and self-presentation.

Although I learned Spanish in school, I’ve always had an advantage over my classmates, who unlike me could not practice at home. Especially as I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to appreciate my heritage and realize the value in it–beyond acing my homework.

As I pick apart the definitions of bilingual vs. fluent, I would now say I’m fluent and only nearly-bilingual in Spanish. The key difference being equality between the languages. I cannot speak Spanish “with equal fluency” as I do English. I can however, speak Spanish “easily” and in a “flowing” manner. I can confidently say that speak more fluidly than many of my classmates and I can naturally roll my Rs, but put me in a court room and ask me to translate? I’ll fail to salsa smoothly across the room.

Pues, it looks like it’s time to update my resume–from bilingual to fluent!

Proud to be a Cuban-American!

Sometimes…I blog on Sundays.

17 Apr

We can all relate.

Whether it be studying, relaxing, releasing endorphins at the gym or a combination of the above, I am a firm believer that Sunday kicks off the rest of the week’s productivity and should be spent cultivating it.

Here’s a glimpse into how I mentally and physically prepare for the work week:

  1. Rise and shine with a power bar for breakfast and a cup of coffee for the road. Straight to…
  2. ZUMBA! at 10 a.m.
  3. Come home and eat a hearty brunch. Usually something high in fiber and protein, like an omelet.
  4. Shower off the ZUMBA!
  5. Errands time! This usually consists of a trip to Target, The Dollar Tree (I wish I was already at the top, the reality is I’m up-and-coming) or both; the bank; the grocery store.
  6. Speaking from experience, it’s important that Step 5 follows Step 3 so I don’t “eat with my eyes” and over-buy at the grocery store.
  7. By the time I get home and unload my goods, it’s usually around 4 p.m.—either time to nap or time to do something active and keep the day rolling!
  8. Because I’ve already had so much fiber and protein throughout the Sunday, I try to keep Sunday dinners light (e.g. salad, soup, half a sandwich, fruit).
  9. Homework time AKA “Sometimes…I blog on Sundays” time.
  10. Finally, I pack as much of my lunch for the next day as I can. I don’t always make time for this during the weekdays, but it’s nice to do a little less on an oh-so-dreaded, Monday morning.
  11. Again, it’s always the goal, but not always the outcome to be in bed by 10 p.m. during the weekdays, but on Sundays I commit to making it happen.

How do you prepare for your upcoming week?

I blog on Saturdays.

16 Apr

The “best times to tweet” and “peak Facebook hours” are overwhelmingly available online; but what about influential blogging schedules? I’m the type that would rather ask a question–since there are no stupid ones–than assume something wrongly. That said, I am not going to assume that just because my Facebook wall is active, my blog hits will rise with a post.

According to a Facebook user activity study published on Mashable, “The three biggest usage spikes tend to occur on weekdays at 11:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. E.T.” Furthermore, the most pronounced of these spikes is at 3:00 p.m. and on Wednesdays. Sundays have the least traffic. The same study asserts that Facebook “posts published in the morning tend to perform better than those published in the afternoon.” However, I said it once and I’ll say it twice…just because my Facebook homepage is red with notifications, does not necessarily mean it’s a prime time to blog.

So when is the optimal time to publish a blog post, in order to reach the largest audience? According to research compiled five years ago (which even that was hard to find on Google!), Friday mornings at 9 a.m.

A CyberWyre-hosted study makes some simple observations and applies them to online user activity. People work Monday through Friday. If they do at all, workers usually take a break between 10 a.m. and noon to visit personal websites from their office computer. Wednesdays and Thursdays tend to be the busiest days at work and oftentimes breaks go untaken. Fridays are the most laid-back. Blah blah blah.

“Friday morning at 9 a.m. should reach the most readers out of the entire week.”

Friday...

...before 10 a.m.

The work party.

11 Apr

Have fun–not too much fun; be professional–not too professional. The work party is a situation in which your personal life and career life must collide. When done right, business and pleasure can loosely go hand-in-hand and actually improve an office’s environment.

Today, my department head as well as three coworkers and I went to dinner after work. (Keep in mind that when I say “work” I mean “internship.”) At first, everyone had perfect posture and commendable etiquette.  Two hours later however, the restaurant dimmed their lights and my colleagues and I let loose. Elbows resting on the table. Double dipping in the crepes. Laughter roaring.

One crepe, four forks.

I wouldn’t compare it to black and white, but the beginning to the end of the night did look quite different. If I could have chosen the dinner to remain one way throughout, I would have chosen the end. In no particular order, here’s what I think you should know to make your “work party” a success:

  • If everyone else orders a drink–order a drink.
  • Do not be the one to tell the waiter whether or not you need more time ordering.
  • Try to “hold it” if you can. Excusing yourself for a moment isn’t awkward, but rejoining mid-conversation is.
  • Avoid the 5 Bs: boys, booze, Bush (as in the former president–or any president), brands and the Bible.
  • Don’t be embarrassed to ask for a to-go box if you have leftovers.

These are just my observations of what caused awkward silences this evening… If you have such an event coming up, check out this more lengthy (and by lengthy I mean satiric) article from the PDXSX Blog to ensure that your work party has the perfect balance of fun and professionalism.

I am not a blogger.

10 Apr

Before I begin, note that I consider myself a “140” sort of girl. Although I read blogs–see my blog roll–and have had internship experience with WordPress, I do not consider myself a blogger. I’ll admit, jumping from Twitter’s 140-characters and brief Facebook statuses all the way to professional blogging sounds like jumping in a cold swimming pool to me.

However, as a senior public relations major and communications minor, I know the growing importance of blogging. So throw me in, baby!

Yes, there is a streak of blue in my hair.

I’m Cristina–formerly Christina. I legally changed my name to reflect my Spanish heritage. I love public relations and social media. I particularly appreciate old school press releases; my friends joke that my husband-to-be would be smart to propose to me in one. I am also a grammar freak. I’m the girl that volunteers to edit her friends’ essays–no Starbucks-payment necessary. (Feel free to point out any typos of mine!) My passion and long-term career goal lie in the music industry. Although I have been caught in the recording studio myself, I prefer behind the scenes work. I aspire to be an artist publicist.

We’ll see how this blog evolves… But I plan on writing in a casual tone, about professional (or at least semi-professional) “stuff.”

Jump in with me! Cristina.

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