What is Ello?

New Social Network Ello

“But what is Ello?” you ask when the barroom table erupts into witticisms about it.

What is Ello?” ask Catee, laughing into her neat scotch. Everyone at your table starts giggling and, ashamed, you grab your pack of American Spirit rolling tobacco and run out into the night to catch the L train, vowing to never drink with such a giggling pile of people ever again.

Now that you’ve lost all your friends, you should at least know what it was over. So what is Ello? Who is on Ello? Should you be on Ello?

Once a year a committee of tech writers emerge from their various caves to meet in the meadow where they enjoy a single day of sunlight and decide which new upstart they are going to predict will topple Facebook. This year, it is the advertisement free Ello that was nominated to be the death of Facebook. The tech writers then wrote series of articles about how Ello was a “Facebook” killer. Then, the next week, they wrote a series of articles about how Ello is “no facebook killer.” 

Okay, but what is Ello?

Ello was started by Europeans, so people are very polite. It’s invite only, so you have to be cool to be on it. Or you could be totally uncool and buy an Ello invite on eBay. No one is really sure how to use Ello or why they are there. But everyone is excited to be on it. Exclamation points are used after every sentence on Ello.

No one actually knows who their friends are on Ello, so everyone hopes their presence will lead their painting, photography, writing, or custom muffin leggings to be discovered.


A lot of people have begun to realize just how much time they waste on Facebook, so they’ve decided to waste it on Ello instead.

When the tech writers from the cave started writing about how they were sick of Facebook making a profit from by selling people ads relevant to their interests, they took actions, and began joining Ello to spurn Facebook. They plan to continue to spurn Facebook for a time, before deciding that ultimately nothing is happening on Ello, and they missed their friends, so they called them up and said, “Hey sorry about storming out of the bar last night. I was confused and felt left out because I didn’t know what Ello was. Want to drink bourbon, smoke spliffs and listen to a Neil Young record and talk about Ello?”

Fashionably Lame: Finding The Wrong Film Job in New York

temp-jobs
When I was in college I used to go on random interviews for short term film editing jobs. I figured any kind of experience would be great to put on my resume. Would anyone  know it was editing for dog porn.  (JK)  My main problem going into these interviews was that about half way though, I would find something I didn’t like about this production house and the rest of the interview was just me thinking “Dear lord are we done yet?”

One particular interview I had in the Meat Packing District of Manhattan was terrible in a stellar way.  It was for some kind of fashion company, they were looking for someone to edit their videos of models.  Which, if I had read the ad carefully before I agreed to the interview, would not have been a surprise to me. It was in one of those buildings that was under renovation so the elevator I took to the 8th floor might as well have been a string attached to a box. It had that gross padding draped on the walls. There was colorful language scribbled all over the padding. I say this because there were cuss words of all kinds, but also because they were written in a rainbow array of sharpies.  I got off on the 8th floor and made my way down a creepy looking hallway. I would not be surprised at this point if I was murdered. It would be my own fault for not reading the ad correctly. I knocked on the door of the suite and when it opened I went snow blind for a minute. It was a wall to wall white painted fashion studio. The floor was white, the desk was white, the receptionist was white. The florescent lighting was illuminating my acne scars. It looked as though it had snowed on the sun. And I knew instantly, this was not going to go well. I stood in front of the beautiful blonde receptionist sweating in my black pants and New York and Company button down blouse.  A tall dapper man soon appeared and introduced himself as the head of the studio.  “So you’ve had some experience editing work for your own reel? How much do you know about fashion?” 

“Almost nothing.” I responded. To my credit, no one could ever say I wasn’t honest on an interview.  

“Right…well let’s take a look at your reel then.” The dapper man says as he pulls up my vFashionably Lame by Christina Cola

When I was in college I use to go on random interviews for short term film editing jobs.  I figured any kind of experience would be great to put on my resume. No one had to know it was editing for dog porn.  (It wasn’t but even a job like that would have been a step up at the time)  My main problem going into these interviews was that about half way though I would find something I didn’t like about this production house and the rest of the interview was just me thinking “Dear lord are we done yet?” I couldn’t even tell you what half the places wanted from me because I would just stop listening. One particular interview I had in the Meat Packing District of Manhattan was terrible in such a stellar way.  It was for some kind of fashion company, they were looking for someone to edit their videos of models.  Which, if I had read the ad carefully before I agreed to the interview, would not have been a surprise to me on arrival.  It was in one of those buildings that was under renovation so the elevator I took to the 8th floor might as well have been a string attached to a box.  It had that gross padding draped on the walls. There was colorful language scribbled all over the padding. I say this because there were cuss words of all kinds but also because they were written in a rainbow array of sharpies.  I got off on the 8th floor and made my way down a creepy looking hallway.  I would not be surprised at this point if I was murdered. It would be my own fault for not reading the ad correctly.  I knocked on the door of the suite and when it opened I went snow blind for a minute. It was a wall to wall white painted fashion studio. The floor was white, the desk was white, the receptionist was white. The florescent lighting was illuminating my acne scars no doubt. It looked as though it had snowed on the sun.  And I knew instantly, this was not going to go well. I stood in front of the beautiful blonde receptionist sweating in my black pants and New York and Company button down blouse.  A tall dapper man soon appear and introduced himself as the head of the studio.  

“So you’ve had some experience editing work for your own reel? How much do you know about fashion?” 

“Almost nothing.” I responded. To my credit, no one could ever say I wasn’t honest on an interview.  

“Right…well lets take a look at your reel then.” The dapper man says as he pulls up my vimeo page.  He asked to see my best work so of course I picked a sketch that I wrote, filmed, and edited.  He could probably care less about the writing but I figured he might like the way I pieced together a semi storyline. Because if there’s one thing I know about fashion shows, it’s that they always have a great plot.  He sat there and watched my two minute sketch in dead silence. Not a single laugh at the sketch. I kept glancing at him to make sure he was even breathing.  I wondered if he could see the sweat through my shirt yet.

Finally he stands and says “Okay, we’ll let you know thanks for coming in.” He tries to make his tone as optimistic as possible.

“Thank you!” I respond, in a way that says someone please kill me.  He shakes my sweaty hand and I leave the murder building. 
Since then I’ve read every job posting super carefully and then had someone else read it to me another 6 times. Because before you arrive, it’s best to be sure, or else you’ll find yourself editing dog porn. 

Which Game of Thrones Character am I?

women-of-westeros

There is one question that a girl can ask that is guaranteed to start a fight with her and her significant other. No, it’s not “Do I look fat in this?” although I’m shocked that father’s don’t pull their sons aside at a young age and tell them the best way to answer this without getting their heads chewed off. For the record none of these are appropriate responses:

1) Who cares?  I’d still bang you

2) I like my girls thick

3) Silence, with a deer in headlights look on your face

But no, the question I’m referring to is this: “Which Game of Thrones character am I?”

I posed this question to my poor, unsuspecting boyfriend one evening, and he immediately answered “Sansa Stark!”

I stared at him blankly for a few seconds, before replying, “So you think I’m a whiny, conforming, ginger, who would turn her back on her family for a total douchebag, like PRINCE JOFRREY!?”  Being a smart man, he quickly figured out that this was not the correct answer. Then he quickly began to backpedal, and tried to ward off our impending fight by then saying “The Red Witch!”  Oh great!  Even better! My boyfriend now likens me to a conniving witch that occasionally births demons. And for the record? My hair isn’t even red. And I’ve never given birth. And in the event that I do someday give birth, I’m very hopeful that it won’t be to a full grown demon.

I suppose, like any girl, I would have liked to hear Daenerys. We even call one of my cats “The Dragon” so it’s only fitting that I would be the Mother of Dragons. But I have to admit, I’m not exactly freeing slaves to aid in my revolt against the Seven Kingdoms in order to gain my rightful spot on the throne. In thinking about it, there iisn’treally a good answer here. The only other ladies in the show are bastard haters, brother lovers, and breast feeders to their adolescent sons.

I had to concede that maybe it was an unfair question, a trap of sorts. So II’mgoing to do a solid for the rest of you guys that haven’t yet had to answer this precarious question. When your girlfriend, wife, significant other, friend, or sister asks the question: “Which Game of Thrones character am I most like?”  Try answering with this:

“None of the characters are as beautiful, kind, funny, and smart as you are, so none of them.”

Or just keep your mouth shut.

You’re welcome.

 

How You Can Make a Difference in The Food Waste Fiasco

Food Waste Fiasco Madison

Food Waste in Madison, Wisconsin

By Rob Greenfield

Let me throw some statistics at you.

  • We throw away 165 billion dollars worth of food every year in America.
  • 40% of all food in America is tossed out. 
  • 1 in 5 children goes without a meal on a fairly common basis. 
  • 50 million Americans lack food on their plate.

 

These statistics are mind blowing but if you’re like me it’s probably hard to wrap your head around a bunch of numbers. I need to see it to understand it so I went out and I saw it.  Now I’m here to show you.

I’m cycling across America right now and will be arriving in NYC on September 26th.  I started dumpster diving in Wisconsin to raise awareness about food waste and was so blown away by the amount of perfectly good food that I found that I vowed to only eat food I rescued from dumpsters until I reached the Big Apple.  In fact I’m chowing down on whole wheat bread and fruit from a New Jersey dumpster as I write this story.  Over the last few months I’ve spent most of my free time either in dumpsters or talking about being in the dumpsters.   Yet, I’m still blown away almost daily by how much food I find tossed out.

To prove my point even further and show the grand scale of our food waste problem I’ve been hosting Food Waste Fiascos in major cities along the way. And this is what I’ve found.

Food Waste in Chicago, Illinois

Food Waste in Chicago, Illinois

 

Food Waste in Detroit, Michigan

Food Waste in Detroit, Michigan

 

Food Waste in Cleveland, Ohio

Food Waste in Cleveland, Ohio

5- Food Waste Fiasco Lancaster

Food Waste in Lancaster

Food Waste in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Food Waste in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

 

The Philadelphia score was four hours of work with one car – Lancaster four hours with two cars – Cleveland seven hours with one truck – Detroit four hours with an SUV.  It was frighteningly easy to pull these fiascos together last minute.

I’ve learned that I can roll up in nearly any city across America and collect enough food to feed 100’s of people in a matter of one night.  My experience shows me that grocery store dumpsters are being filled with perfectly good food every day in nearly every city across America, all while children are too hungry to concentrate in school.  I’m not going to stand for that and I know you won’t either.

I’m holding my final fiasco of the tour in Union Square on September 30th at 5:00.  Seeing photos is one thing but seeing it in person has been life changing for some and mind blowing for most.  Join the event on facebook and invite your friends in the New York area.

Our message is that grocery stores should stop dumping their excess food and start donating it.  Through all of my hands on experience and research I have found that it is a win-win situation for grocery stores to donate their excess food to non-profits.  By donating they are protected from lawsuits by the Good Samaritan Food Act, they get tax write offs, they spend less on dumpster fees, and most importantly they are doing what is right for their community! The most common excuse for not donating is that they fear liability but according to a University of Arkansas study not a single lawsuit has ever been made against a grocery store that has donated food to a food rescue program.

Thousands of food rescue programs are already feeding people across America and thousands of stores are already donating to these non-profits and food banks.  However it is a very small fraction of what could be done.   We need more stores donating more often and that’s where you come in.  Simply take to social media and tell your grocery store to #DonateNotDump or talk to the manager of your local grocery store in person. It’s up to us to hold them accountable to treat the environment and our hungry Americans with the respect they deserve.

I believe that we are at a tipping point for ending food waste and with citizen action we can solve this. My campaign has been receiving positive national media attention and so have many others that I have seen.  The excitement inside me tells me that we will drastically reduce food waste before I am an old man.  It starts with you.  It starts with me.  It starts with all of us.

 

How To Have The Most Fun Ever On Instagram

Instagram Cat

By my calculations, I’ve spent sixty hours in a van in less than two weeks. I haven’t been kidnapped again, just on tour. So to pass the game, I’ve invented a game involving Instagram. It’s a strange game, highly addictive, and I’ve found it to be much more entertaining than than being a highway Tinder terrorist.

Here’s how to have the most fun ever on Instagram:

Search hashtags to try to find a hashtag that has the least amount of things tagged under it without it being zero. Your goal is to to find photos with only a single hashtag.

Anyone can play it. You can play it alone or with others. Playing will show you an interesting angle of humanity.

To my shock, not a single person had tagged anything under #ApesActingOut.


Apes Acting Out

Are apes not acting out anymore, or has the entire world decided to leave this hilarious behavior off Instagram?

 

#ExplodingGuitar turned out to be a winning search with only three photos tagged under it. And two of the three were mistags, since only one showed a guitar actually exploding.

Exploding Guitar on Instagram

#FarmAnimalsActingOut turned out to be a dud, with not a single photo tagged under it. I could maybe believe that apes have stopped acting out, but I find it very difficult to believe that farm animals have completely stopped this sort of behavior. Don’t expect me to believe that an animal as intelligent as a pig confined to a pen the size of a shoebox isn’t going to display delinquency. People are so busy posting #Selfies, that no one is documenting and hashtagging animal delinquency.

If I was disappointed by the lack of farm animals acting in hilarious ways, then the goldfish devastated me. Not a single photo filed under #GoldFishJumpingOutOfTheirBowl.

Other promising contenders that turned out to be duds include: #InopportuneGlitter, #TigersRidingLions, #ChildrenRidingDinosaurs, #DinosaursRidingChildren, #DinosaursBeingCrazy, #OutOfControlPrairieDogs and #GoatsBeingCrazy.

With 69 photos filed under it, it was far from being a winner, but #AnimalsActingLikePeople proved to have some fabulous photos, including Kisses, who didn’t seem impressed one bit by the steak dinner in front of her.

Cat on Instagram

 

Winnings searches that produced a single hashtagged image included: #FrogsFlying, #RunningFromAnimalControl, #FlyingPennies and my favorite, #GoatsOnTopOfGoatsOnTopOfRefrigerator  (which sadly, only featured goats on a porch).

Goats on Instagram

Flying Frogs

And finally, my Instagram adventuring led me to this guy. I appreciate that somewhere in the world, is a guy who reads his books in a horse costume. He might be why everyone on Instagram is so merry and there are about 20m #happiness tags and only 1.7m #sadness tags. Thanks horse-guy-reading-a-book-with-what-I-presume-to-be-scotch.
Horse Man on Instagram