Showing posts from March, 2005

The Reason Men Have Sex on the Brain

Have you ever noticed how men have sex on the brain? Their preoccupation with women’s bodies — always noticing breasts, how big they are or aren’t, or how how much cleavage is showing, is hard wired. I don’t think women notice stuff like that unless it’s really obvious. Women put themselves on display, but it’s almost as much for the benefit of being seen and admired by other women as it is to be admired by men. Like the other day when I walked into a jewelry store, the salesgirl had a super low-cut top on with her push-up bra cantilevering her boobs up and out like two scoops of ice cream. They were impossible to not notice. Interestingly, she seemed completely oblivious to the fact that she looked like she was serving up dessert on a tray. It’s mysterious that there is such a difference in sexual radar. Women are all about relationships and seek human connections and men are more like animals. I’m convinced Sex and the City is popular with everyone because it’s all about relati

The Good, the Bad and Ugly Bureaucrats

I hate it when people who won’t accept responsibility for what they’ve done. I’ve found whenever I screw up and admit it, it takes the wind out of everyone’s sails and the issue dies down. As I said in an earlier posting, others simply want to find out who is to blame, and once that’s established, they go on about their business. My hero and role model in this regard is a friend, Annie Mar, who worked for the City Water Department. I was working on the Water Department annual report when we met. It was my first important project for a huge bureaucracy and it was there that I quickly learned about “covering my ass.” In fact, I amassed such an enormous volume of documentation by the time each report was completed, it felt as though several trees had given their lives in the process. The reason for this was because bureaucrats are fearful people and can only make decisions after first looking over their shoulders to see what other people think. To have an original thought or opinio

Vindictive Billing

I'm a self-employed graphic designer, so it's important for me to establish relationships with clients in order to cultivate ongoing work. It's usually easy to do this since most people are basically nice, and often my clients become close, personal friends. But on occasion you might encounter "the client from hell." -- you know, the one who calls you evenings and during the weekend and emails you at all times of the day and night, expecting you to drop everything so you can finish their urgently important project. Please note, these are precisely the people you don't want to have your home phone number. In case you don't know, the clients who are the most trouble almost always are the ones who want to take the greatest advantage of you. In fact, there seems to be an inverse ratio of “pain-in-the-ass factor” to “billable hours/expenses.” The more problematic the client, the more demanding they are and the less they want to pay. The pro-bono clients

Confessions of a Graphic Designer

My best friend and I both are graphic designers. We're sort of geeky because we like talking about new hardware and software (we both idolize Steve Jobs) and sometimes even reminisce about our favorite versions of various applications, like Freehand versions 3.1, 5.5 and 8. (Freehand MX is a pain!) Since we're both self-employed and occasionally suffer from that odious malady, procrastination, at times we've had to explain to clients why a project may be delayed. In discussing this universally common situation with colleagues, we found designers have some unique and some not-so-unique excuses. Some of the more believable ones (because in some cases, they were authentic) include: 1. My hard drive crashed and I had to reformat my drive and reinstall all of my software 2. I had a press check or the press check was delayed 3. I had to visit someone in the hospital / go to a funeral 4. My email / network / server was down and I never received the files / images / work

The Death of the Democratic Party, and Civility

Friday night my husband and I had dinner with friends who are former urban dwellers but now live 50 miles outside the city. It's tricky to talk to anyone about politics, because even if you're talking to Democrats, some are so stark-raving liberal that it's impossible to find common ground. But even so, we found ourselves talking about the sad state of the Democratic party today. Whatever happened to heroes like JFK -- or in our state, Senators Henry Jackson and Warren Magnuson? By today's standards, all of them would seem like Republicans. The Democratic party is now so far left that it alienates moderates from both parties. Why can't the DNC promote a candidate like Ben Nelson, Jr. Senator from Nebraska? Right now there is a dispute over the authenticity of Washington State's newly "elected" Democratic Governor, Christine Gregoire. I'd voted for her in the past for attorney general, but none of us had voted for her for governor. The reaso

i'm a graphic designer who loves words. - terri nakamura