Rock on Design

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

No, You're Never Too Old to Rock 'n' Roll if You're Too Young to Die

This past weekend I had the opportunity to help host a retreat for a group of around 250 high school youth. Back in my day I went on this retreat all 4 years of high school, and then went back many times to help host the event for youth in later years. This past weekend was my 13th trip up to the retreat center, and I have never felt so old.

I don’t know what it was about this particular time up there, but I just felt like I was WAAAY out of my league. While I was nowhere near the oldest of the adult leaders, I still felt like maybe my time at the retreat center was coming to an end. Sure there are plenty of other people that could play music up at this retreat, but I have done it with my brother Joe so many years that it has become a tradition.

It seems that one of the reasons I seem to be burning out has to do with my leadership responsibilities. In the past I have had to take care of some rather rowdy boys. (This year was no different.) But when the dust settled this time I really was happy I got to know those guys and I hope that they each got something out of the weekend that they can take home with them.

So I guess in the end, I don’t know if I am going to go back, but I do know that I really am proud of that group of rowdy guys… and that is probably what is most important.

(Heading Lyrics - Too Old to Rock 'n' Roll, Too Young to Die, by Jethro Tull)

Friday, March 17, 2006

The Pipes, the Pipes are Calling

Once again it has come time for me to write on one of my favorite topics… St. Patrick’s Day. Since I was a wee lad this day has held great excitement and cause for celebration.

Growing up as an Irish Catholic a confrontation of beliefs would gather around this blessed day from time to time. March 17th has historically land right in the middle of the Catholic Season know as Lent. While this is not really a problem most years, this year we come upon a dangerous mix of these 2 celebrations… for St. Patty’s Day lands on a Friday. During lent one of the ways that the Catholic Church comes together in sacrifice and remembrance is the abstaining of eating meat on Fridays. However if you were to have a traditional Irish dinner you could not go with out the corn beef and cabbage.

There it is… the issue that we Irish Catholics must wrestle with. Luckily a few weeks ago the bishop of my parent’s diocese (who is an ardent Irish Catholic) excused Catholics who wished to eat meat in a traditional St. Patrick’s Day celebration. (St. Patrick is a Catholic Saint after all.)

What does this mean for me? Well I don’t think that I or any other Catholic will be going to hell for eating meat on a Friday, but it is nice to know that we are able to respect the beliefs of 2 traditions at the same time.

(Heading lyrics – O Danny Boy by Londonderry Air)

Monday, March 13, 2006

A Year to the Day

(Editors note: this entry was written on Friday, March 10, 2006, which was actually my 1-year anniversary of my blog. Unfortunately we were so busy at work that I was unable to post it.)

My how time flies. After a year of blogging I can now look back a documented record of my thoughts (to a certain extent). I am somewhat surprised by the fact that I am still updating this forum. In the past, something as novel as a journal would have been forgotten by me shortly after the first entry. However, with the continued urging of my friends I have done my best to keep this site reasonably up to date.

So as I plan to go out and enjoy the first 50-degree day of the year I just wanna say THANKS. Yep, thanks to all those who have read and or commented on my thoughts and ideas. I look forward to another year of fleeting topics and silly discussion.

(Heading Lyrics – Fade Away by Pride and Glory-Zakk Wylde)

Thursday, March 02, 2006

I Can't Afford to Hesitate

In my profession (graphic design) there is a major driving force behind all of the projects I work on… deadlines. Love them or hate them they have a way of defining the scope of a project.

Today I finally finished the Newsletter that I do every 2 months for the company I work for. First off, I actually enjoy publication design and our newsletter is continuing to fall into that category. In my time we have produced pieces as small as a 2 color 6 page fold out to a 4 color 20 page magazine (which I just completed today.) Through out all of these shapes and sizes two things have been constant… deadlines, and the total disregard for them. I don’t know why this occurs but every time we do a newsletter it takes 2 weeks past deadline to get it out to print. This has become a phenomenon that I can’t seem to understand let alone solve.

So for those of you out there who have had times in which you can’t seem to get everyone to respect your deadlines, how can I change this situation for the better? I know it is possible… heck Rolling Stone does it every month and they are a bunch of party animals. Please share your wisdom with me, I’m all ears.

(Heading lyrics – Deadline by Tree) Editors note: These were the best lyrics I could find, even though I have never heard the song… thanks Google.