Typically I am only used to dealing with adversity. This is new for me in so many ways. Recruiters, I ain’t mad atcha, and I also take requests. #commawards #podcasting #musiceducation #employment #headhunters #recruiters #communications #marketing #awards
Last Friday, I was truly having the worst day in ages.
I received a threatening phone call from my insurance company about an outstanding bill. Come to find out it was only $30 for a lab test back in September, but at least the person I spoke with worked with me to clear it up. I then had to write a check to the State of Oregon for an “overpayment” of Food Stamps when I was unemployed that pretty much wiped out half of my refund check.
Ironically, I Can Still Reapply For Food Stamps
On top of it all, my hours at the grocery store where I work were cut again considerably, and I was counting on that refund money to help us through some upcoming lean times. (The irony: I actually can reapply for Food Stamps, since now I work only part time. But I digress…)
This was, of course, after looking for employment in my field daily since being laid off last year. And then a letter came from the Communicator Awards. Sure, why the hell not, what’s one more piece of bad news today, right?
Well, the guys had a camera running when this happened. Click on the link here, since I don’t pay enough on my meager salary to afford the updated version of web hosting on this platform. It shows me losing it after finding out. I had to work that evening, and didn’t sleep before my shift.
What Comes Next?
It still hasn’t sunk in. I have previously won awards for community service work, and usually there is always a great many obstacles that comes along with these major, multi-day or other outreach projects. I look at them as challenges, because I have had to deal with adversity my entire life.
But this is different. It is solely for my work in my chosen field, Mass Communications and digital content creation. The thing is, I am not some young hotshot in a studio with a creative team. It’s all me, right down to creating the promos I post on Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn, and of course being the audio engineer for the program as well, in what is basically a storage room with nine year old software, a $300 computer and a $200 cell phone. You read that correctly.
If nothing else, I will still be producing “What You’re Not Listening To” until the cows come home, because it has been one of the few things that has kept me sane over the last year of election, wildfire, unemployment, COVID and economy crazy.
Recruiters, I Ain’t Mad
I honestly do not know what comes next. The mere fact that this is now a program that has won a major, mainstream, international award is something I wasn’t ready for. What I especially wasn’t ready for were individuals and businesses now calling me back after hearing nothing from them for a year.
Everyone loves a winner, I gather. As ambivalent as I was in entering the two contests I submitted to, I did have a goal: to be at least employed in my field part-time, because I am not getting any younger and I have a family to feed, and being anonymous isn’t getting me work. Let’s both be the professionals we claim to be and start from now.
It Is Officially Designated As Different
Of course, I did set out to create the most unique audio education program on the web that not just utilized so much of my skillset, but forced me to learn new ones. And here we are. People say I’m different, and now there is proof.
The most mind-blowing thing was the following: The Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts, who produce the The Communicator Awards, give two trophies for each category, one for Excellence and one for Distinction. I won the latter for Best Branded Series. I could only afford to place one entry, so I thought, let’s go for broke. For those employers looking for something different, here is some of my other work and a story on how I made the promo clip to one of my most-listened to shows.
I Really Would Like To Thank The Academy
A few months ago, I cheekily stated my acceptance speech would be the following: “I’d like to thank the academy and all the little people, because there are so many of you little people…” Why? Because I honestly though I stood no chance of winning.
The truth of the matter is, my family, friends and fans, whom I lovingly refer to as the Children of the Revolution, are taller to me now than they ever have been. And I will let you all in on a little secret: one of the original working titles of the program was “Disasterpiece Theatre.”
Calling the program an award winner also still hasn’t sunk in. It reminds me of those old Looney Tunes afternoon TV programs where the announcer would state, “Starring that Oscar-winning rabbit, Bugs Bunny!”
Truly looking forward to hearing from you. And yes, I do take requests.
Love to you all.
Ben “Daddy Ben Bear” Brown Jr.