SecondIron's Blog

Sharpening Iron to Live Second

How Bees Create Community (and might save ours)

Ever feel like there is a buzzing sound in your head that you just can’t get rid of?

Maybe it is just me that hears the buzzing sound as I sit on the riverbank writing in my journal. The buzz I am referring to is not from liquor, beer or anything like that. As I look over my shoulder and realize the buzz is from dozens, better yet likely hundreds of bees.
Sitting on the bench that’s has a bush buffer behind covered with bees buzzing around.

These bees remind me of when I was a child. I used to catching bees on my lunch break in my sandwich bag. Granted this was not an amusing hobby according to my panicked teachers. Fear consumed their reaction creating havoc every time. They feared I (or worse they) would be stung by the bees (which never happened).

The furry little legs and beady eyes would intrigue and tickle me as they crawled on my hands and arms. Terrified my teachers would move the other kids away from me.

It never ceases to amaze me how these same bees hold the future of the world on their wings. “One of every three bites of our food originates from bees pollinating the flowers that produce many of our fruits, nuts and vegetables.” We depend on bees for much of our food and with them on the edge of collapse should be something we treasure rather than fear.

As I sit where many others would panic I watch God’s little army at work.

How to Get Authentic Sponsorship

Being able to get authentic sponsorship matters. Lack of authenticity can disrupt your message.

As a blogger, writer, marketer or anyone in business, authenticity matters. Many of us get so focused on trying to get our message out to the masses we forget our roots. Getting wrapped up in seeing what other people are doing and trying to copy them rather than separate from them. As an imitation you will be seen right through by your readers or clients. In turn the lack of authenticity will devalue your business and gather more moss than trust.

Recently I was sucked into the vacuum of trying to improve my own blog by reaching out to a couple of companies to inquire about sponsorship. First pitches that I have sent out since I have been blogging of any real substance, I was excited. The first company, has well yet to respond, not even a auto-responding email, just crickets. The second company responding pretty quickly stating they were forwarding the request to their marketing department for review. Excitement right?

A few days passed and I received a follow-up email from their marketing team. Pretty standard, “we appreciate your interest, we are not going to pursue sponsorship at this time.” However they offered to send samples of their brand for me to try. I thought to myself, well it is at least a win, I mean I get samples to try for free right? I humbly accepted my defeat and gave them my address for my samples to be sent.

How LinkedIn Almost Fired Me

Anyone that uses social media to any extent knows the rules change. Just look at Facebook recently, and apparently LinkedIn as well. The developers of the social media websites and applications make changes all the time. Some are for privacy, functionality or well  just because. That last one is the tricky one. As a user, when we use their product we accept the responsibility that no matter how their app works, defame or maims us we cannot hold them liable. I recently learned this the hard way. I fired myself on LinkedIn and did not even know it. Recently I updated my LinkedIn work experience to include a couple more items. I added blogging on this site as well as the freelance writing I do for Father Jerzy’s Road to Sainthood. Sounds innocent enough…right? Soon after making the changes I started getting congratulations notifications from people in my network. It is awesome whenever we get kudos especially for our art.  I received some personal notes that really made my day. Then I started to wonder what all the fuss was really about… Thankfully, I am not networked with my manager on LinkedIn. This became evident when a coworker at my day job stopped by my desk. They were checking to see if I had left yet and wanted to know if I was fired or quit. A bit confused, they said my LinkedIn profile said I had a new gig. I checked did.. it had fired me from my day job. Apparently when you […]