Call of the Big City (seeking a moment)
I’m moving to New York City, Upper West Side near central park. My urban Austin life is just too ordinary. It’s not like a big fish in a small pond thing. I mean, this place is blowing up thanks to Mr. Mars, Elon Musk discovering Austin. But, it is a bit of a bigger, or biggest pond thing with NYC. We have a long-time romance. Did you know they put out the NY Times on the streets at about 3 in the morning? If you’re up, you can grab a copy and hit a 24-hour dinner to get all caught up before most people’s wake-up alarms have gone off. It’s intoxicating, being surrounded by such industry, technology, beauty, and rugged filth.
My sister had a Golden in New York named Cadence. She loved hunting rats in the Wall Street area at night. She had a crazy huge flat down there and it became a ghost town after 9 pm. When I was there, as a teenager, we’d walk Katy (her other name) around the quiet streets. We were looking for finds, Katy was looking for, and finding, rats. We never let her eat them. I had a special rag to get them out of Katy’s mouth and then we’d drop them in the next trash bin that wasn’t overflowing.
And even though I’ve grown up in a hippie town turned tech mecca, I’ve always felt Austin, Texas was a bit backward. Probably the politics. Art and music have always been here. The tech came in hard while I was in college with Dell starting the affordable PC revolution right from the dorm room of the same university I went to. I was a Mac guy, though. And then, funny how things happen, I was leading the team to redesign DELL.COM version ONE. It was an agency effort, but I was the digital media strategist.
My big career moment was while I was whiteboarding the structure of the entire Dell.com site, I had a section for retail sales. The idea I was pitching was that people would actually buy computers via the Internet. At that moment in time, it just hadn’t happened in any significant way, but I was a subscriber to New Media magazine and I liked the emerging concept of where we were going, this thing called E-Commerce.
I had to erase my E-Commerce Store section from the website proposal before we pitched to Dell. “It’s just not believable.” One year after the launch of Dell.com v.1, Dell Computer Corporation was the largest e-commerce retailer in the world.
Read more Short-Short Stories from John.