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Adventures in Marketing

Posted by alltogethernow on 2005-11-09 01:59:07
4 forum posts
First Entry
Time (Vancouver) – 10:00 pm
Time (Toronto) – 1:00 am

** WARNING L/J ALERT **
This is gonna be long, very long and mostly just about me, and probably boring..
SOOOOOOO Don’t read it if you don’t want to hear about ME….

Alrighty check this…

First a little background for those who don’t know what the hell I do. It would be useless to read what is likely to be a long pointless entry if you don’t know what I do for a living….

I am the “Activities Coordinator” for an English Language school in Toronto Ontario CANADIA… “What the hell is an Activities Coordinator?” Good question. Basically it is my job to show foreigners a good time in Toronto whilst they are studying our illustrious language. I take these ‘kids’ (usually the students are about University age 20 +) around town, show them the usual sights… Baseball games, CN Tower, Musicals, Raptors, OHL, Pub Nights, etc..

“OH really hard job you tool. I wish I could get paid to go to watch the Jays.” This is the usual response I receive. “I want YOUR job.” Etc, now believe me, this job is NOT hard, but it CAN be quite crappy. Sure, sure I can do basically whatever I want with these students as long as they have a good time, BUT overall this job is basically FORCED socializing. Imagine, it’s Sunday morning, 10 am. You are terribly hung over. The type of hangover that won’t allow you to eat, and makes you dizzy when you stand. This wonderful Sunday morning you must get up and take 110 people to a hockey game, AND (this is the kicker) pretend to ENJOY being there, instead of sitting at home smoking phat spliffs and playing WOW (which is really what you want to be doing). Hockey, Baseball, Musicals and boozin’ is great when you WANT to do it, BUT when you are forced against your will to take a large group of people and entertain them it can be a FUCKING WHORE.

Again I am sure some people are saying:
“OH YEAH, WHINE MORE YOU WHORE I _____________ FOR A LIVING. YOU GOT IT EASY.”
a) Give dollar BJ’s
b) Gut chickens
c) Give dollar BJs to gutted chickens

Whatever.. You get the picture, and really I am not complaining. Overall I like my job, it’s really just not as good as most people assume it is. I DO get to meet amazing people and have a good time with them.

Now,

Two weeks ago our resident marketer took me aside and said “Trevor we would like to send you to Korea for KGIC’s (my school), 10th Anniversary Asian (SEX*) Tour.” Of course I jumped at the chance!
*the sex part is brought to you by one of our resident pervs*… Miguel of course
*the other resident perv being one Mrs. Hui

Now, unlike some of you well traveled fuckheads, I have never been anywhere. Really I have never been outside Canada and the United States and I haven’t seen much of either of those. So it was quite the rush to get everything together in order to travel overseas. Two weeks is barely enough time to acquire a passport, let alone steel your soul for the madness that is surely to be Seoul, Kwang Ju, Dae Jun, Busan and Tae Ju South Korea.

YES! YES! I am going on a 5 city tour of South Korea to promote our school to the masses. The teeming throngs of eager South Korean English learners were going to get a piece of my mind, a piece of my mind that would preferably compel them to join many of their brethren here in Canada to learn their language of choice.

As I said before, my job is not a bad one. I have worked much worse, and touched the corpses of both humans and poultry in the process, but I instantly saw this trip as a great way to show the higher-ups my unlimited prowess within the company. I felt, and still feel that my performance on this trip could parlay directly into a promotion to our marketing department. A marketing position would translate to LOT of travel all over the world, a large monetary promotion, and escape from those hideous Sunday morning Hockey games. Really QUITE a few birds with one stone, so I instantly decided that I should take this trip SUPA-seriously.

The last two weeks have been prep work. I got my passport ($117), two new suits ($600 << good deal, for these particular suits cashmere and wool, WOOO International Clothiers), new shoes ($175 … the shoes of an ‘Italian Count’ << again brought to you by Miguel), all in addition to countless other small items. I also had to prepare a presentation (video) and a speech in order to get ready for our tour. Since I have a regular day job in addition to these other assignments I spent two sleepless nights putting these together. It all COULD be worth the trouble, if only my performance can meet my, and the higher-ups expectations during the tour. Finally ready, Monday morning (Nov. 7th) I boarded a plane to Vancouver. Vancouver is the location of our head office. I was told I would have to undergo some “training” and we would be polishing our presentation before heading to the far-east.

Vancouver…. As I said before, I’ve never been ANYWHERE, Vancouver included. Due to my lack of travel Monday morning was my first time boarding a large commercial airliner, although NOT my first time on a plane. When I was younger the father of friend of mine had a little 6 seater that we rode from Hanover to London and back.

I was somewhat apprehensive, the night before my departure, but overall the flight was a pretty boring experience. Their was some brief excitement at airport security where I set off the metal detector even after removing everything except for my pants and t-shirt. Standing in an airport terminal stripping was quite exciting, and I think my security screener enjoyed the sight. I removed the regular equipment before the X-Ray machine, but was required to also remove my belt, watch, wallet, shoes, socks, glasses, dress shirt, and eventually even my earring. None were found to contain any sort of explosives, and I was allowed to continue my journey.

Five and a half hours later I had collected my baggage and chartered the services of a limo. “LIMO??” You might say, but really it was $5 more than a cab, and my employer loves to see excesses like this. Anyone who has seen me abuse my expense account should not be surprised at such a measure. My associate Sun Young instructed the driver to head to our head office in downtown Vancouver.

Again, I HAVEN’T BEEN ANYWHERE, so really I have never had the pleasure of seeing a mountain. LAUGH NOW IF YOU WISH.

So, as we cruised through some unusually sunny weather toward the center of the city I was very excited to catch a glimpse of majestic peaks of the Rocky Mountains. Although incredible, impenetrable banks of dark clouds obscured everything but the base of the colossi I was impressed. Later when the clouds cleared out, upwards and eastwards I could finally see the peaks.. I was speechless. You can see it a million times on TV or Video, but to see them in person is something significant. I can now understand why people want to climb the fucking things.

When we reached our destination I was checked into a somewhat shitty hotel (although I have seen worse) and after a shower and change into more appropriate clothing I was whisked away to what was to be the first of many, MANY meetings.

I will not bore you with the details, but it is now clear to me that it is not only I who has been thinking of a promotion to marketing. I will be working closely with the marketing team and the President and VP of the company while in the city. Let’s just say that after 30 minutes things were looking very promising for me. The first meeting was brief, and over in the early afternoon, but I was expected to wine and dine Mexican agents later that night.

I had about 3 hours to wander the main street here (Robson) and see what I could see of the wondrous mountains looming over the city, my first glimpse, and touch of the Pacific Ocean was also a highlight of my limited free time. At 6:00 I was expected to be at the ‘Red Robin’ to meet the VP and 12 wonderful Mexican women. I was astounded when I was just told to “Meet us at the Red Robin”. I have never been to Vancouver before, and the VP knew that yet no directions, however vague, were forthcoming.

Whilst wandering in ever-increasing circles to find the illusive ‘Red Robin’ I felt the need for coffee and dropped by the nearest Starbucks (yes, I know, but it’s fucking Vancouver you could throw a rock and hit Seattle in the eye without looking). I was waiting for my Chi-Latte with Soy Milk (SHADDAP … WHEN IN ROME>> FUCK!), I somehow met up with two of my good friends and former students of our school in Toronto.

This was great luck, with some quick prodding I discovered that the ‘Red Robin’ was actually UPSTAIRS from our current location. ALSO, these hilarious Japanese ladies (Michiko and Hitomi for those who know) had nothing to do later that night, and ALSO, no where to stay. My hotel room however decrepit was HUGE. I had two queen-size beds, a couch, chair and kitchen. So I invited them to stay the night and abuse my free accommodations.

We struck a deal, I would give them a call when I was finished with the Mexicans, and they would meet me at the hotel, and bring a bottle of Rum. Two things about Vancouver if you have never been here, and if you HAVE been here please correct me if I am wrong.

NUMBER ONE –
Finding the BC Liquor Store is near impossible. I walked all around the downtown core and didn’t see anything. After wandering for those 3 hours all up and down the main strip and around the harbour front I was ready to conclude that this was a dry town. Sure there were bars to be found, but nowhere to buy a large case of beer, or bottle of rum which was my desire. I eventually found out that such places exist, but they are nowhere to be found in the downtown core. I did however discover the miracle that bars here CAN SELL BEER TO GO.. how wonderful.

NUMBER TWO –
Black people do not live in Vancouver. Seriously.. I have now been here two days and really, REALLY I haven’t seen ONE person of the darker persuasion. You can find many people of Asian decent. Hong Kong, Japan and Korea are all well represented, but NO BLACK PEOPLE. Coming from Toronto I find this quite strange. Can anyone enlighten me to why this is? Local merchants must have a hideous surplus of Roca-Wear and Sean John gear. So... if you are one of the fools that hate Blacks.. Vancouver is the city for you! I can see the tourism advertisements now.

“Join us and your Aryan brethren in a modern Black-free Utopia! Vancouver consistently voted as one of the most livable cities on Planet Earth, WE HAVE NO DARKIES!”

My night of drinking and carousing with the Mexicans was not unpleasant. At one point the VP was outside smoking with me and he mentioned in a quite direct manner; “Trevor if you do well during the next 3 weeks you will be considered for the position of marketing our Toronto Campus.” I WAS RIGHT!!! I COULD parlay this Asian SEX Tour into the promotion I wanted. Twas good news indeed.

The beer and nachos flowed late into the 9th hour. I then said my goodbyes and met the Japs at the hotel. Enjoyed a glass or two of rum, stayed up until midnight (3am for me), and slept through till morning.

DAY TWO….

Today really put the ‘Business’ in Business-Trip. I worked with the marketing team to produce a brochure for our school’s tenth anniversary. They made me responsible for writing the content for our new Victoria Campus. Having never been there and knowing nothing of the city (or island) I couldn’t have been MORE wrong for the job. Even with my obvious handicap I had the job done within the hour. The rest of the day consisted of rehearsing our presentation. By ‘rehearsing’ I mean the President and VP basically ripped apart everyone’s work and told us to completely change the presentation. The video I had worked for 24 hours + on was now completely useless in the context of the presentation, and my speech as well. All that time spent for no particular reason got me a little steamed.. but that’s the way the cookie crumbles… AM I RIGHT PEOPLE!??? HUH AM I RIGHT??? … also COCKS!

I was at work tonight until 9:30 trying to update our Power Point with the rest of the marketing team. I picked up some beer from the bar across the street and it met well with pizza that had been ordered. Some were shocked that I would bring beer to a Tuesday-night work session, but some were quite pleased. The head of marketing supported my decision as a good kraut should.

Tomorrow will bring a complete re-edit of my video (another 24 hours … I hope not), the binding of about 5000 brochures and the re-write of my speech. All must be done by 3:30 on Thursday when we will make a second attempt on the presentation to the President and VP

WISH ME LUCK PEEPS!!!! I MISS YOU ALL VERY MUCH ALREADY!!!!
I still have a lot of trip to go. I will try not to make all the entries this long of course, but the introduction is always longer than the follow-ups. Day Two of Twenty-One… OH MY .. this is going to be a LOOOOOOOONG one.
I am off to Korea on the 11th, and Taiwan has also been added for the 23rd and 24th.
Madness indeed.

- Alltogethernow out…





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