A Duck Across the Pond

Lint.

That’s my first impression on jolly ole England: the girl running through the Heathrow airport clutching her Puddles the Duck pillow pet, wearing lint covered yoga pants.

…And when I say covered, I mean they might as well have been white pants.

Sweeeeet.

Thought I gotta say, I feel lucky to have made it here with as little drama as possible. My connection in Minnesota was pretty quick and easy, leaving me a little time beforehand to grab a Subway sammich. On the flight to London, I probably only slept about… 2 hours…? Which, I know, is not ideal but I just cannot get comfortable enough to sleep on planes for any extended period of time. I kept myself preoccupied watching sappy movies like Stupid, Crazy, Love and The Notebook…. and Drive. It was basically one-on-one time with Ryan Gosling, and it was glorious.

When we landed in Heathrow I nearly threw up from the landing. My head was already pounding from these GD allergies and sinus gunk, and it felt like that monkey with the cymbals was bashing around in there. Dizziness and exhaustion didn’t help much either.

Finally made it through customs, currency exchange, got my luggage and found the car to pick me up. After almost an hour of taking a few detours around central London, we found the University of London International Hall. Though I must say, through all those wrong-turns I saw so much of the city, and it made me even more excited to explore it while I’m here.

However it completely slipped my mind to ask him if I could keep the sign with my name on it… :( *HINT for someone at home to make one for me when I get back to PDX?? :D *

The dorm is your average, bog-standard university housing, but average everyday people also live here during the summer for reasonable rent. One of the girls in my program, Haley, and I met a little family of 3 who were living down the hallway from me. I think it’s pretty cool that the school would lend itself out that way and not waste the building being nearly half-empty for summer term.

It really does feel like we are here by ourselves, though. It’s weird. My friend Charlotte and I have been wandering around the dorm throughout the day and have hardly ran into anyone. My room might as well be in Narnia, since it’s way out in the west wing of the building. While it might’ve been nicer to have all of us in the program closer in proximity to one another, it makes sense why we can’t be. We are guests here, after all. And lucky to be.

Tomorrow we meet with Martin, our program coordinator to have an orientation and be shown the center where our classes will be. Charlotte and I are hopefully going to go see what we can do about getting cheap cell phones as well, and try and hunt down the McDonalds we couldn’t find tonight.

You know… just… as a backup plan…. ;]

My ethernet cable that I just bought at home doesn’t work for some reason, but I managed to get a hold of another one and it works great. I’m also in the process of trying to figure out how to upload clips from my camcorder to my Mac, since apparently it was meant to be for a PC after all… oops. IT WILL HAPPEN and footage will be up soon. I did a super quick room tour with a makeup-less me for you all to see. :]

Hope everyone’s summer is off to a fantastic start! My day was rough, tiring, and it’s time for bed.

Nanight,

Sammy

Lady Antebellum (Taken with instagram)

Lady Antebellum (Taken with instagram)

Baxter’s First Lost Tooth.  (Taken with instagram)

Baxter’s First Lost Tooth. (Taken with instagram)

Feets in the Streets.
2/22/12

Feets in the Streets.

2/22/12

Workin for the Weekend.
2/3/12

Workin for the Weekend.

2/3/12

Partying for a Purpose.
1/28/12

Partying for a Purpose.

1/28/12

Squish Man.

Squish Man.

#8. Just When I Thought It Couldn't Get Crazier...

It’s pretty nuts for me to think about how my plain-Jane family from Newberg, OR has started to break into the “big time”. My dad’s company, Hydro Graphics, Inc., has become responsible for the latest football helmets sported not only by college teams, but by the NFL. Colleges such as Florida State, TCU, West Virginia, Pitt, LSU, Maryland, and of course, the University of Oregon have donned their designs throughout the last year. Now, they’ve finally broken ground with the NFL, and it was announced that the New York Giants will be wearing HGI designs in the 2012 Super Bowl.

HOLY. CRAP.

I thought it was a big deal when I got to go to the Rose Bowl with my dad, hanging out during pre-game warm-ups out on the field and snapping pictures with my iPhone. The Ducks gleamed in the HydroChrome finished helmets, provided by our small, family-oriented business. But this is major. Not only will the Super Bowl appearance boost the image and the notoriety of what HGI does, but hopefully even more people will be interested in who the people are behind the scenes, where the helmets came from, and how they can get their own piece of the action.

It’s too bad that a Super Bowl ad is out of the question at the present time for HGI. While texting my dad tonight and talking about tonight’s broadcast on KEZI channel 9 in Eugene, he told me that for a 30 second ad, it would cost $3.5 million, or at $116, 666.67 per second to have an ad during the NFL’s biggest game. MENTAL…

Yes, I realize that the entire country is watching, and the whole world will have access to these famous and super-hyped commercials come Super Bowl Sunday (even before, in the case of Volkswagon and their latest installment of Star Wars themed ads). For now, HGI will have to stick to marketing themselves online, by the means of sharing on Facebook and other social media sites, news coverage from Portland/Eugene stations and The Oregonian, and just overall word of mouth.

People are loving what they’ve seen. I know I can’t wait to see what comes next.

To watch the broadcast on KEZI, go here:
http://kezi.com/sports/237605

Check out Hydro Graphics, Inc!
http://www.facebook.com/hydrographicsinc
http://www.hydrographicsinc.com/

#7. “Bueller…? Bueller…? Bueller…?”: The SEQUEL?!?

Whether it is meant to create excitement and anticipation for a sequel to the iconic 80’s film, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, or not, it was still freakin AWESOME to see the combination of Matthew Broderick and the iconic “chicka chickaaaaah” music once again.

I’m not sure how I’d feel about a sequel, but I’m pretty sure it couldn’t top the original. The post that I Stumbleupon’d (linked below) suggests that this could be a teaser for a potential Bueller themed Superbowl Ad. The description for the provided video doesn’t exactly deny this idea:

"We hate to be such a tease, but on a day like today, we just have to. Stick it out until the Super Bowl, or take a ‘day off’ on Monday and catch the big reveal."

Either way, I was still pretty stoked to find it. Using an incredibly famous cult movie that resonates with multiple generations of people will either go over incredibly well and make people feel nostalgic, or it will epically fail. I’m interested in seeing what the ad is going to be a promotion for, and just how much the original movie or characters are a part of the ad.

Besides… what else do we watch the Superbowl for, if not for the ads?

Post Source:

http://www.itworld.com/internet/244843/does-mysterious-10-second-video-herald-ferris-bueller-ii

#6. An Ad-Free City.
In  Sao Paulo, Brazil  in 2006, the “Clean City Law” was passed by mayor Gilberto Kassab. Though it sounds like legislation promoting cleaning up city streets and reducing pollution, Kassab was after eliminating a very specific and different type of pollution: he called it visual pollution. All forms of advertisement, including but not limited to billboards, posters, bus ads, signs in shop windows, all had to be taken down. People were uneasy at first, thinking it would kill local business, but in a matter of months nearly 10, 000 ads were taken down.
I think it’s interesting how the point is made here that people didn’t really notice the architecture and uniqueness of the buildings and city around them until the advertisements became illegal. It makes me think about just how often I see an advertisement throughout a day just walking in Eugene. Whether it be someone’s clothing brand, a restaurant chain, and even seeing “UO Go Ducks!” is branding and advertising. It also kind of makes me second guess advertising methods as a whole. We, as creators, must begin coming up with newer, alternative forms of advertising so as to not consistently bombard those who are forced to view it throughout their day-to-day lives. Making people become genuinely interested, like “ooh, what is their message?” instead of “damn it, it’s just another obnoxious ad.”
Sao Paolo is very densely populated, with an upwards of twelve million people inhabiting the area. Without ads, the city still was able to flourish and carry on like normal. It’s funny, in comparison, when you think of Times Square in NYC, and everywhere you look you see an ad. Pretty sure without those, the city would still be just as functional.

#6. An Ad-Free City.

In Sao Paulo, BrazilĀ  in 2006, the “Clean City Law” was passed by mayor Gilberto Kassab. Though it sounds like legislation promoting cleaning up city streets and reducing pollution, Kassab was after eliminating a very specific and different type of pollution: he called it visual pollution. All forms of advertisement, including but not limited to billboards, posters, bus ads, signs in shop windows, all had to be taken down. People were uneasy at first, thinking it would kill local business, but in a matter of months nearly 10, 000 ads were taken down.

I think it’s interesting how the point is made here that people didn’t really notice the architecture and uniqueness of the buildings and city around them until the advertisements became illegal. It makes me think about just how often I see an advertisement throughout a day just walking in Eugene. Whether it be someone’s clothing brand, a restaurant chain, and even seeing “UO Go Ducks!” is branding and advertising.

It also kind of makes me second guess advertising methods as a whole. We, as creators, must begin coming up with newer, alternative forms of advertising so as to not consistently bombard those who are forced to view it throughout their day-to-day lives. Making people become genuinely interested, like “ooh, what is their message?” instead of “damn it, it’s just another obnoxious ad.”

Sao Paolo is very densely populated, with an upwards of twelve million people inhabiting the area. Without ads, the city still was able to flourish and carry on like normal. It’s funny, in comparison, when you think of Times Square in NYC, and everywhere you look you see an ad. Pretty sure without those, the city would still be just as functional.