Scattered Brilliance

From my brain to paper (or pixels as the case may be)

Archive for general

What I’ve been up to while I haven’t been blogging (here)

So it feels like forever since I’ve had a chance to just sit down and write about what I’ve been up to.  I think that is primarily because, I’ve been up to alot.  Between work all the drama that has surrounded CNET these days, it has been relatively draining keeping ahead of the game there.  But the last thing I want to catch up on and spend weekend time thinking of is more work!!

Outside of work, I’ve been spending a significant amount of time helping out at MVN (http://www.mvn.com). Not only have I been writing about the Red Sox at Fire Brand of the American League, MVN’s Red Sox coverage, but I have also been reading every post that comes through the MLB section of MVN and editing the MLB front door on a daily basis.

Every morning I read through the 25 or so posts that were made since I last updated the door and choose the best five or six posts.  From there, I look for Creative Commons ok photos that match those stories at Flickr or through MVN’s subscription at ICON SMI (http://www.iconsmi.com).  After resizing the image and writing the headline, lead, and teaser for the featured article, I choose two more stories to run in the subhighlight section.

I’ve really enjoyed this process as it gives me the opportunity to read some great baseball writing as well as hone my craft as a writer by forcing me to look for great writing and discern the good from the great.  It also keeps me up to speed with all things baseball.  I wish I had time to read and be active with every baseball blog out there (at least the top three to five for each team.  I really like the concept of the editorial layer on top of a blog network.

I have also enjoyed my own writing at MVN’s Red Sox coverage (http://www.mvn.com/mlb-redsox).  While I absolutely miss writing this all for myself at the Red Sox Times (http://www.redsoxtimes.com), I couldn’t keep up with the comprehensive level of coverage I expected out of myself.  Between game threads, recaps, analysis, breaking news, etc.  I couldn’t be everywhere at once.

I do still hold a dream of turning the Red Sox Times into an editorially managed “best of Red Sox blogs” print and online publication.  But I really haven’t had the time to pull it all together.

I also have a new project, a Red Sox podcast.  My first episode is live at MVN and can also be listened to here:

or at Red Sox Radio (currently at http://redsoxradio.wordpress.com until I get things set up at http://www.redsoxradio.net which I recently purchased).

Podcasting is a thrill.  It really is a craft that I think I can master and I look forward to the challenge.  As my cohost Paul said at the end of our first episode quoting Craig Kilborn’s wise words at the end of the first airing of the Daily Show, “we’ll get better.”

I’ll certainly try and update here more often (when I am not screwing around with tumblr, friendfeed and all the other ways that I can communicate with the Interwebs).

End of the beard?

End of the beard?

I don’t know that the beard is going to make it that much longer.  It just doesn’t feel like me.

Good customer service is a reciprocal relationship.

Dealing with medicine, doctors, pharmacists, insurance, etc is never easy; especially when there are real uncertain health risks at stake. My wife is taking a round of medicine that isn’t your average antibiotic to help with some current, and scary, goings on. As if that weren’t enough, I went to the local Walgreens today and there appeared to be an insurance issue preventing a refill of the meds that she is prescribed to take twice a day.

To make a long story short, amidst a bunch of chaos and confusion, Kristine at Walgreens rose to the moment and walked me through the issue calmly and was really looking to help find a solution that wouldn’t leave my wife without those meds first thing in the morning.

What I realized was that her as she was dealing with three different “me’s” (customers with issues) at the same time, if any of us got frustrated with things that were in fact out of her control, her ability to help any of us would be tremendously compromised by the rush of adrenaline that would boil with the confrontation that may ensue.

What I came to understand very clearly in that moment was that customer service isn’t just something that as customers we can blindly expect. We have to enter into the relationship with the right mindset as well, understanding the other person’s limitations and sphere of influence and respecting their wont and desire to help us in our time of need.

When we do that, we are more likely to receive the level of customer service that we feel like we are entitled to.

I think back to a recent flight from Las Vegas to Manchester, NH coming home from CES and an extremely disgruntled passenger who berated the flight staff at every turn for slights that were half in his mind. Did his attitude give him the right to good service from the Southwest flight crew? To their credit, they handled it as you would hope and took the high road. But you have to wonder, did the service level to the entire flight of passengers suffer because of the lack of consideration of one of our fellow customers to those serving us? I would venture to say that likely, it did.

So, the lesson for me; treat the service representative on the other side of the transaction with the respect, patience, and dignity that I expect back. In the end, that will be more beneficial not only to me, but to the rest of the customers that representative deals with that day.

Rocking the Beard

Boom Dizzle would be proud.

Fear the Beard

Don’t think it will stay long and it’s only about a week’s growth. But fun while it lasts and I am too lazy to shave.

Another blog?

For those of you who know me, you know that I’ve blogged for a long time on very specific topics (the Red Sox, my daughter). I’ve embraced many ways of sharing the content I find and things that interest me. From del.icio.us to Facebook to Twitter, to my Google Reader shared items, you can find things that tickle my fancy anywhere. So why another attempt at blogging?

Birth of a Blog

The answer is simple. I’ve never really tried to capture the randomness of thought that enters my mind.

For example, right now, I am typing this post watching my dog nap in the sun, lamenting the end of my cup of Dunkin Donuts coffee, wondering how my wife is feeling, flipping back and forth to emails as they arrive, trying to figure out why microblogging matters, laughing at the spectacle that was the Democratic debate in South Carolina was last night, and listening to WEEI’s Dale and Holley.

It’s a little chaotic in here at times.

At the end of the day, I realize I don’t retain much of anything. I flittr (that would be web 2.0 for flitter) around, think on a ton of things as they cross my path, and then let them fall by the wayside. So consider Scattered Brilliance to be the dream catcher to my thoughts. We’ll see what we capture.