Saturday, June 20, 2009

This is Goode work if you can get it

GREATER NEW YORK - Now this is Goode work if you can get it. Murphy-Goode Winery in Sonoma Valley posted the following ad in April:
We at the Murphy-Goode Winery got to thinking about the new age of communications and we figured it was a pretty good thing. So to get going, we’re looking for someone (maybe you) who really knows how to use Web 2.0 and Facebook and blogs and social media and YouTube and all sorts of good stuff like that — to tell the world about our wines and the place where we live: the Sonoma County Wine Country.

In exchange, we’re offering you a “Really Goode Job” — a six-month job paying $10,000 a month plus accommodations!

We want to hire a social media whiz (your title will be “Murphy-Goode Wine Country Lifestyle Correspondent”) who will report on the cool lifestyle of Sonoma County Wine Country and, of course, tell people what you’re learning about winemaking.

Did we mention that the compensation was $10,000 per month Plus accommodations in a beautiful home in picturesque Healdsburg, a popular vacation destination in our neck of the woods. Working hours are flexible. And all you have to do is experience wine and good living, and then tell people about it. (Do you play Poker, or Liar’s Dice? Don’t worry; we’ll teach you.)

You (we hope) will become part of the Murphy-Goode crew — for six great months.
Apparently, 775 applicants thought so, too. Make that 776.

Sour grapes: Not everyone drinks from the same vat. In contrast to Murphy-Goode, us above-mentioned 776 souls, and those who organize and sponsor bloggers to attend wine conferences, some say winery blogging is a waste of valuable resources.

Send in your one-minute video (just like when you tried to get on Survivor) to see if you make the cut. The top 50 contestants (just like Miss America) will get winnowed down (just like American Idle) until you win win win!

Who will win this crown? Oops, hat. Who will win the right to become a spokesmodel, to live on Maggie’s Farm and sing the praises of the juice of the grape?

And when you start your gig (please let’s not call it a job) try not to use the word passionate when describing anything having to do with winemaking. It’s been done.

Another funky note: WinePredators' report told me something not so Goode about an attempt to cloud the clarity of Murphy-Goode's Lifestyle Correspondent selection process:
And then I’m cruising the internet and find this: a wine marketing think tank, VinTank, has already vetted the existing candidates, chosen their favorites, and even helped them promote their candidacy. At one point, they even offered Murphy-Goode $100,000 in services if M-G chose one of their favorites!!
Hello? Murphy-Goode Dream Job? My dream has been squelched before I even finished my video!
Seeds of inspiration: ArtPredator (the same blogger as WinePredator) reports that the inspiration for the Goode job offer stemmed from Queensland Tourism's Best Job in the World Contest. The winner, Brit Ben Southall, won a 6-month, $150,000 gig as Caretaker of the Islands of the Great Barrier Reef.

I raise my glass to all the Goode applicants and have a few words for you. Salutations for submitting. Bona fortuna throughout the process. Savor the experience. If you win, don't forget to spit! And lastly, but most importantly: (1) Don't make these millennial mistakes and wine-blogging blunders, (2) Don't mistake the essence of your mission, and (3) don't rest on your grape leaves; prepare your long-term career strategy now.

I'll be looking forward to following (and rooting for) the M-G winner and Ben Southall in the blogosphere.###

Saturday, June 06, 2009

What time zone are we in when it's not Eastern Daylight Time? (settling a bet)

IMAGE: Standard time zones of the world as of June 2008 (SOURCE: at
It was about 7:00 PM, Eastern Daylight Time (19:00, local military time), and my sunlit office had begun to dim. I glanced out at the horizon, debating: tear myself away, now, from the proposal I was completing to flick the light switch and grab an Oreo cookie (or three), or polish off my paragraph first? Then the phone rang.

The call was from a couple who had a question: "What time zone are we in when it's not Eastern Daylight Time?"

Easy question. I gave the easiest answer: "It's Eastern Standard Time." However, the more complete answer is layered, like that snack I was salivating about.

[IMAGE: A Double Stuff Oreo Cookie (SOURCE: at]

Her triumphant "Right answer!" and request to repeat it to her spouse signalled there was more to their matter. My guess: they needed help settling a bet.

She mentioned that he'd cited "something about military time." As he's a US Naval Academy alumnus and sailor, he was probably referring to Zulu Time or Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). Harold F. Maybeck does a fine job of explaining the origin and use of Z- or UTC-time here.

They wanted a hit-and-run answer, so for that time being, I opted out of addressing military time and email time. Instead, I shared that I'd previously blogged about time zones and promised to email the posts. I'll be sure to include this one to help even the odds.

(Afterward, I'll strike a light and scarf some sandwich-cookies.) ###