Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Celtics Pistons, Social Media for Healthcare, Kenndy on the brain, and RIP Auntie Mal

Good morning my fellow bloggers, co-workers, friends and family. Another hodge-podge post this morning covering the Celtics, social media, Kennedy and a shout out to a family member of mine who passed this week.

Game one of the Celtics Pistons Eastern Conference Finals was a start to what I'm sure will be a nail-biting series. It's like watching to heavy weights swap round house hooks. I predict that the Celtics will win in 7 and even get a road win. That means, however, that the C's will lose at home at some point. I honestly don't care, just as long as they win...especially now that I have a bet in place a few of my fellow co-workers who are Detroit fans. There is no money involved. No clam chowder for (insert whatever Detroit is known for other than cars here). The stakes are much more important. Losers have to wear a winning team's t-shirt (of the winners choice), take a picture with it on and put use it for a week as their profile pic on Facebook. The kicker of it all is that losers also have to change their status update to say something like, " the biggest Celtics fan in the world."

I love these sort of bets. It gives you a personal stake in the outcome of the series, but it also builds office camaraderie and adds fun to the work place. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in what we are doing during the work day that we forget to have a little fun. However, if the basketball gods happen to rain on my parade, I will be one miserable SOB wearing that Pistons shirt (puking).

Another thing I love is social media. I'm slowly but surely carving out a specialty in the office as the go to person when it comes to this "new" communication tool. I'm interacting with or following members of the media via twitter, reading tons of blogs via RSS, commenting when I have something to say, getting feedback on posts from other bloggers and members of the media, etc. It's very cool to get paid for something you really enjoy doing. I like the PR business very much. It's exciting. Keeps me on the forefront of the what's happening locally and around the country/globe. Throw in the tech aspects of social media and going to work feels like Christmas morning, every day....well, maybe not everyday, but you get the picture. One of the recent posts I've read (because I'm also a contributor to the site AND editor/designer) is a post about social media and healthcare. For those in the PR business and social media experts, you know that healthcare companies (hospitals, biotechs, medical device companies, etc.) have been very slow to jump on board the bandwagon. The PR Finish Line says that healthcare co's must get on before the train leaves the station and we're on to web 3.0 (or are we already there?)

Speaking of leaving the station (warning: crude joke coming), seems as if Ted Kennedy is on the way out. Poor bastard. The guy has had a helluva a life and has made an impact on this country that will not be forgotten. He's made lots of political friends and enemies but he truly seemed to care about the people. What gets me about this situation is the media coverage. I know it's an important, history story. But man, it's absolutely all over the place. Forget trying to plant a story in the local Boston papers for clients. There's now way it'll happen. Outlets are now on Kennedy death watch. It's sad really. I know it's a big story, but man, do we really need constant "live" shots from outside of the hospital? What more can you report on now? When the plan of action for his treatment is released, it'll spawn another barrage of coverage. The Boston media is and will continue to be consumed by this story. When he does pass away, it'll get even worse. I hate being cynical like this, but being in this business for 14+ years has made me this way.

One last note relating to passing away, my great aunt died this week. Auntie Mal as we called her, was a rocket. Every year we'd have a family reunion in NH. The event had a number of traditions. Horse shoes, lots of food, brews, laughter and music were all on the menu. One of the traditions was a camp fire starting at dusk. We'd all sit around the fire (30+ of us) while my dad, his brothers and cousins would play guitar and sing. They are all musically inclined so the music was good. Beatles, Stones, Zeppelin, etc. were on the play list. As the night got darker, one last tradition was implemented - a big bottle of goldschalger. The bottle would be cracked and it was passed around the circle until it was done. It only took a few rotations for it to get tapped. When the bottle would come to Auntie Mal, she never hesitated knowing that it would knock her on her butt. She never passed. Always took her shot and enjoyed it. Should would tell jokes, tell stories of the old days, etc. I'm not entirely sure she was actually sipping the stuff, but it looked like it. Either way, it seemed as if she really enjoyed those times because she was there with her sons and daughters, their kids, her nephews and their kids, etc. Those were good times and Auntie Mal was the cornerstone of all of it.

She, and her jokes about the old days, will be missed. The camp fire won't be the same without her.


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