Wow, these screens are ginormous. Ugh, it smells like hot garbage. Oh, avoid eye contact from the people trying to sell me things. Excuse me, sorry. Damn everything is so big here. I can’t stop smiling. Oh, got to cross the road now. Okay, now I can take a selfie!
This is what was going through my head the first time I went to Times Square just a few blocks from my hotel. It’s funny, when I got home Andrew asked if I j-walked in the city and I immediately said yes. However, after thinking about it I realized, for the most part, I actually did wait for the light to change. It just felt as unsafe as j-walking even though I wasn’t. New York certainly made Ottawa drivers look calm and considerate. As for the ad week conference, I wish I had gone to more seminars, but I couldn’t help exploring the city. And eating the food. Oh. My. God. The food.
I had a religious experience eating this ramen bowl, and I’m agnostic. The broth alone, words are escaping me. I also got to eat at a sushi place that had a conveyer belt of different rolls, salads, and desserts moving down between the tables. They also had hot dishes made to order, the popcorn shrimp was delicious. This restaurant – YO! Sushi – was so aesthetically pleasing, and the owner actually gave up his seat at a booth when he saw that my friends and I were being seated at a table out of view from the conveyer belt. As for the seminars I actually went to, I will share what I learned in next week’s post. I will, however, show you how professional I looked with my student delegate badge; just ignore the septum ring and purple hair. Hey, I’m the creative type, just be happy I can’t afford a sleeve of tattoos.
For some classic NYC tourist stuff, I went through Times Square every day for one reason or another. I also saw The Empire State Building, went into The Empire State Building, went through the security in the Empire State Building, got in line for the tickets to go to the top of The Empire State Building, saw the price for the tickets to go to the top of The Empire State Building, then promptly walked out. What an experience! I also had to go to at least one museum, so my friends and I chose The American Museum of Natural History. Unfortunately, we only had two hours to go through it so we definitely didn’t see everything, but we still saw a lot of really cool stuff. The art from different cultures looked amazing, and the dinosaur skeletons were awesome. Y’all know I had to get a picture with an Easter Island head. I didn’t have any gum to spare, unfortunately.
A really exciting part of the trip was the tour of the Twitter office in the city. Walking through it made me so excited for where my career could take me. The interior design was so lovely and perfectly catered for creative minds to thrive. Every time we were asked if we had any questions all I wanted to know was how I could work there. That’s my homework for the week, and should be your homework if you’re looking to start your career: decide what job you want, then decide where you want to do that job, and then go to their hiring page online and see what the requirements are for that job. Then get good at those things! I know next to nothing about coding, so if they want the person for the job to be proficient in that skill then guess what I need to teach myself? Yeah, coding. In a way, the Twitter tour was the most rewarding part of my NYC trip because it was the only place I got to make a connection, a LinkedIn connection, that is. The tour was given by a friend and former colleague of my professor, Jonathan Simon, and I made sure to follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn after his presentation after the tour. This means I should probably start using my Twitter account…
Arguably my favourite part of the trip was the D&AD Impact Awards. This was its second year running and the awards go to campaigns, products, business initiatives, and community projects that, “ultimately, contribute towards a better, fairer, and more sustainable future for all.” At the show, there was a live band with a saxophone to play the winners on and off the stage and the host was absolutely hilarious; definitely the highlight after the award winners themselves. I did not prepare for how cold it would be at the show though, it was very hot outside while I waited in line with my friend so I didn’t think I’d need a jacket. I had goosebumps for the majority of the night. Then towards the end when they were showing videos of the best of the best I got goosebumps on my goosebumps. Yes, you read that right. From my program, I have learned that great advertising solves a problem. Until Impact, I had been thinking in terms of first world problems and clever ways to deal with them. Learning about the problems around the world and what initiatives have been put in place truly moved me. I had no idea what kinds of problems I could truly help to solve in the advertising and communications community. We really do have the power to change attitudes and bring attention to things that should no longer be ignored. I strongly urge you to check out this year’s winners. I have never been more inspired. However, one issue I had is that I spotted confetti canons on the ceiling before the show started and I was excited for them to go off at the end of the night. But sadly, they never did.
As my parting words here is my official announcement of a time change; I will now be posting on Sunday nights instead of Saturday nights. What a great way to start your week, eh?