Monday, September 28, 2009

Kraft, what on earth were you thinking?

I really want to tell the Kraft marketing department about this. If you want to know what's got me on a tizzy, it's this:

Kraft's intention in iSnack 2.0 was to align itself the new Vegemite product to a younger market.

If they had done their research carefully, 'i' was originally intended to designate anything related to the 'internet', like iPod and iPhone. If there's one thing the Kraft marketing department have demonstrated clearly, is their lack of technological jargon.

How would the conversation go in homes across 'Strayla?
"What do you want on your sandwich?"
"I want a iSnack 2.0 sandwich."
Doesn't exactly roll off the tongue.

I can feel the producers from the Gruen Transfer are already making an episode of iSnack 2.0. The name of the episode? Dumbest names companies have come up with.

Now, let me ask you this question. What should the new Kraft Vegemite be called? Certainly not iSnack 2.0.

Happy reading,

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The 32cm Ice Cream Cone

I'm not the type of person who's up for a food challenge. However, last night, I did take up a food challenge. I didn't succeed, but I gave it a go.

My friends and I had dinner at Chinatown and to burn off the kilojoules, we decided to walk along George Street. There, we saw this store:

As the curious little buggers we are, we entered the store. Then we glanced over to the sign that said:

This is good value of the century! I was amazed, $2.90 for a 32cm ice cream cone. It comes in three flavours - strawberry, vanilla and chocolate. They also do double flavours as well.

I felt like a giddy schoolgirl when I got my strawberry and chocolate ice cream. Here's the pic:

We marvelled the photos of prior customers who have taken on this challenge. I couldn't believe I was holding a 32 cm ice cream. A bit longer than the 30 cm plastic rulers I use to bring to school. The shop assistant was amused we'd taken the ice cream cone photo shoot.

On the streets, I saw a lot of by-passers raise an eyebrow or asking their friends, "Where did they get that?" It was difficult navigating the 32cm ice cream cone in Sydney CBD on a Friday night. I should add this ice cream melts fast. Really fast.

At the end, I couldn't finish the ice cream. But, I believe $2.90 for a huge ice cream cone was a bargain.

It's definitely worth a go. Even if it is a novelty.

Happy reading,

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

He doesn't deserve a Ticket to Ryde

Has anyone been hearing about the Dennis Ferguson case lately? Or rather, how he has been released from prison, to the streets of Ryde?

Right now, the people of the suburb of Ryde, where Dennis Ferguson is currently residing, want him to leave because they believe children are in danger.

I have two thoughts about this. On one hand, I can understand why the Ryde community want Dennis Ferguson out. It is natural for parents, worry, or worse, respond violently when a former paedophile resides in your neighbourhood.

However, after watching the Today Show and listening to MIX 106.5 FM with Sonya Kruger and Todd McKenney - Dennis Ferguson has the right to move back into society without people taunting him.

He has served his time in prison. Listening to both media outlets, I don't think society gives sex offenders, thieves, hell anyone who's sent to gaol a second chance in re-establishing themselves in society. There's one thing I know, moving Dennis Ferguson out of Ryde won't solve anything.

What are your thoughts on this issue?

Happy reading,

Bars, Boys and All that Stuff

Bars - a place where professional workers all brood on a Friday night. Some can be so rude. People cutting in front of you in the bar quene. Middle-aged weirdos whose drunken dancing smashes a tray of beer. Packs of young ladies shrieking, drowning out your conversation and people trying to 'hook up' with that hot lass/lad over there.

However, most people attend bars just to blow off some steam. But there is one advice I would like to give to girls (Boys, take heed):

'If a guy who's just spotted you is dumb enough to buy you a drink, then he is dumb enough to be taken advantage of.'

Seriously, if you're interested in someone, please come up to us at a bar and talk. Buying a drink when you haven't introduced yourself to that cute girl isn't going to cut it. Even worse, a girl will take the drink you've just paid for, and run off with the drink, just because you're suggesting other things other than a 'talk'.

Another note to be made? Pick-up lines suck. Girls will always appreciate honesty and a sense of humour as great qualities in a man. A pick-up line seems contrived, which makes it seem dishonest. For women, dishonesty is threatening. Not funny.

Happy reading!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Going back to the Motherland

Greetings 5ft0's,

I have been busy with mid-semester exams and assignments so I'm sorry in advanced in this entry is rather boring.

Like Corrine from Frock and Roll who posted on her blog recently, I too have a friend who's moving to this place:

Yep, to the Motherland. He's going to complete his pHd in Advanced Mathematics over there and I admire him for plucking the courage to leave familiar surroundings and venturing to the unknown. This trip has been planned for a long time, but it was only recently the reality set in. He couldn't believe he made it into a university in the UK, let alone receiving a decent scholarship there.

Saturday will be the last day for my friends and I to see him for the last time, before he jets off to the Motherland. Besides getting pounded by the pound, I'm so happy that my friend is doing something he loves!

Happy reading!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The World of Retail

Retail - a place where school students, uni students, mums, semi-retired workers will work to pay off their weekly expenses. Having worked in pharmacy, fashion and fast food, I've met some interesting customers in my line of work.

Some customers are rude. Some think you should wait for them 24/7 and not to mention throwing bags, shoes and scarves around - and you have to pick up things while they check out other products. Some customers aren't polite. While others won't speak to you in the same manner as they would to their mates because they think you must be really dumb.

You see some of the outrageous ways customers will do to exchange for their purchases. I'll share you one of my experiences:

At one of the shoe stores I previously worked at, a customer wanted to return a pair of heels. I opened the box and a strong acetonic smell hit my nose. I held the pair of heels in my hand, and had black paint on my hands and arms.

"I'm sorry, I can't refund this. You have tampered with the shoes, so we can't take it back."
"Oh no, it's always been like this. I find the soles of the heels are losing colour at a rapid rate".
"You have painted the soles of the shoes. I can't give you a refund because you've damaged the heels".
"You bitch! I want to speak to the manager now!"
I tried to keep a straight face, even though deep down I wanted to rip the customer's hair out.

My manager steps in, seeing the trouble brewing for the back room.
"What's the problem?"
"That bitch won't let me have a refund on the shoes!"
The manager inspects the shoes,
"I'm sorry you can't refund these heels. You have painted the soles of the heels, not to mention, it's still wet".

The customer grudgingly accepts the manager's answer, places the pair of heels in the box, and walks out.

Has anyone had outrageous customer requests during their time in the retail world? I'll like to hear your thoughts, since I don't want to be the only person who's experience such a spat.

FYI: That was the third time I was called a bitch in my life.

Happy reading!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

What did you have for breakfast?

In light of Mia Freedman's "What did you cook for dinner last night?" - I'm starting out a new section called, "What did you have for breakfast?"

Most people are eating their cereal, or running to Maccas for an egg and bacon mcmuffin - 5ft0 ate last night's left overs. I had Vietnamese vermicelli noodle salad with spring rolls last night. We made way too many spring rolls for dinner and placed the left overs in the fridge.

I had to make a fresh batch of vermicelli noodles, shredded the lettuce and cucumber as well as getting fresh Vietnamese mint from the garden. With the spring rolls, I had to re-heat them using:

The spring rolls turned out fine in the end too. I should've taken a picture on what my breakfast spread looked like too. But, it resembles like this:

There are two questions I would like to ask is: Do you have breakfast at strange times as well? There are days where I eat breakfast at 1pm because I partied way too hard the night before.

Secondly, do you eat cereal/porridge at other meal times besides breakfast? I've been known to eat cereal at 7pm because I've been too lazy to cook up a simple, nourishing soup for myself.

Am I the only person who is lazy when it comes to cooking breakfast for myself?

Happy reading!

P.S - I use the toaster to re-heat my food so much, my parents have decided to buy a second toaster to re-heat my spring rolls, sausages...even slices of pork roast. Ho-hum.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Identity Revealed

I've been blogging under the name 'Five Foot Nothing' for over ten months. I think it's time to reveal who I am.

If you're interested to see what 5ft0 looks like, look over to the left hand menu and see my profile. I'm a petite person who has squinty eyes, ebony black hair and has no hope of becoming a Victoria's Secret Model.

I'm going to make a proper introduction, it will give insight to the person behind this blog. self-referential.

Most importantly, what's your real name?

What are your vices?

Green apple liquorice, chai lattes, vintage accessories and a sucker for Disney Couture jewellery.

What's your horoscope and does it fit your character? I'm a Sagittarius and it fits me to a tee. I took a degree in media because I talk a lot. I took a law degree because I talk a lot. Therefore, I took on a B.Media/B.Law degree because I talk a lot.

Loser! Have you ever worked in the industry?
I couldn't disclose this information for a long time because I was working for this company. But now I'm free from the company, I can reveal that I use to work as a paralegal at Ninemsn.

What's your call on this generation debate nonsense?

Honestly, I don't know why we bothered labelling people of certain ages a Baby Boomer, Gen X or Gen Y. Not all Gen Ys are lazy, same with not all Baby Boomers are business savvy.

But one thing I do have to say is that no one holds a monopoly of knowledge. The so-called Gen Y should listen to those older than themselves - wisdom comes with age. And if you're 40, 50, 60 - heck at any age, you could learn a thing or two from your younger counterparts. Knowledge doesn't stop at 40.

You're such a girly girl. I thought you were a feminist: FYI, I am a girl. Secondly, a feminist doesn't have to be a woman who doesn't shave their underarms or legs - they can come in a form of a pint-size girl who spends too much time at the Glebe markets.

What's are your favourite novels?
The two novels I can relate to on a personal level are Looking for Alibrandi by Melina Marchetta and The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger.

Are you paid to write certain things about products or opinions?

Of course, how else do I pay for my weekly expense? It's $1000 per word, $8000 if you want me to write a positive outcome for your product/organisation and $10000 for a subject mention.

Please send your cheques to 5ft0 Pty Ltd, 12/34 As If I Would Do That, 666.

Stop being a smart ass! Anything else to add?

I'm a huge fan of The Beatles. My favourite member was John Lennon. Shame he couldn't leave to 64.

So now my fellow readers, just sit quietly on your chairs and wait for me to fill you with random opinions and posts, as well hanging out and playing Monopoly with a zillion other blogs, all wearing Ray Bans being cool and aloof, shuffling around cyberspace like a deck of playing cards.

Happy reading!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Book Review: Mama Mia - A Memoir of Mistakes, Magazines and Motherhood

I couldn't wait to get my nifty hands on this book. I've looked up to Mia Freedman since I was a teen. I was one of those geeks who'd study the master heads of Dolly, Girlfriend, Cosmopolitan - heck whatever magazine I could lay my hands, and memorise the names of the journalists, advertisers, marketers and corporate people working on the magazines.

Freedman's definitely set the bar really high for those who aspire to be journalists, or work in any sector of the media industry - editor of Cosmopolitan at the age of 24, editor-in-chief for Cosmopolitan, Cleo and Dolly at age 32 and now? An autobiography at the ripe old age of 37. Yep, Freedman's always does things a decade earlier than the rest of us.

The book details Freedman's magazine career, her mistakes, disappointments and most of all, she writes about her late-term miscarriage in 1999. It also follows the Nine debacle, where she was a creative services director for about five minutes in 2006.

But what struck me most, was her insecurities - two quotes in the book which pinpoint Freedman to the core:

"For more than fifteen years, my identity had been inextricably linked to what I did. I had a title. A business card. And, for the past ten years, an assistant. Staff. A nice office. A car spot. An infrastructure that supplied me with magazines and newspapers. Couriers. IT support. A helpdesk. I had someone buy my lunch, open my mail, screen my calls, RSVP to all my invitations and make me tea, although I usually did this myself. I'm very particular about my tea." pg. 339.

"I found myself dropped from invitation lists overnight...As pertulant as it sounds, however, even though I went to virtually nothing I was invited to unless I absolutely had to, I still liked being invited". pg. 340.

There, I realised how much Freedman's career shaped her identity. How much she was willing to peddle the Cosmopolitan brand, even though her beliefs didn't coincide with the magazine. She could have continued editing Cosmopolitan - talking about oral sex, partying and 24 ways in picking up a guy for so long. The lesson here is, be true to yourself.

As I was reading through the book, I'd also noticed Freedman had taken excerpts from editor's letters back in Cosmopolitan in 2003, such as the time she wore the fashion director's dress and the time she re-discovered her love for baking after watching Nigella Lawson. Yes, I'm very nit-picky, but I'll let this one side because after all, it was Freedman's words in the first place.

Overall, it is a great book to read. It definitely shows Mia Freedman's personality, hard-working, focused, anxious, self-doubt...oh bugger it, it shows her flaws in detail as well. You definitely see how she's matured from a 19 year old work experience student at Cleo, to a person who's running an awesome blog and having many media students aspiring to be writers look up to her.

Happy reading!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Spring has finally arrived!

Hooray! Spring's finally here! It's been a while where I've experienced 22 degree weather. Then again, Mr Spring hasn't been subtle - he's been peeking about since late August. Peeking around so much, he's has seduced me to buy this product:

L'Occitane Verbena Eau de Toilette Perfume - $69.95

Apparently, it's one of L'Occitane's bestselling fragrances. With a rosy geranium and lemon scent as base notes - I'm not surprised. The smell reminds me of Fanta - I love those crisp, citrus scents.

I haven't been blogging in a while, but my life has been extremely busy. I had an interview with a magazine company recently and I was absolutely stoked I got a call in the first place. It'll be in the advertising division - so I'll be sharpening my skills in persuasion.

I have previously worked in an online media company, not as a journalist, but on the legal side of things. Yes, my days were filled with contracts and all you'll hear coming out of mouth were copyright, defamation, contempt and agreements. It was a great position to be in because I saw how creativity and business merged together. They can't exist without each other. You need to finance your business, but at the same time, you need creative freedom to produce excellent entertainment/informative articles and other needs.

The thing I also learnt was that while many journalists, PRs and producers will try and understand how the copyright laws apply to them - you must remember that their passion for creativity will always be their first passion. Most people will fall in the middle, they'll read the media laws that apply to them. You rarely get those who fall into the extreme - those who are attuned to business as well as being creative. Then there are those who refuse to read the laws that apply to them.

Holy smokes, I sound like a whinging executive. Anyway, whatever happens, I'll be happy with the decision.

Happy reading!
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