Bambi’s Boxes, Part III

This Bambi Box that just barely made it into the month of September is a spotlight on the Aizone FW 2012 campaign done by Jessica Walsh under the art direction umbrella of Stefen Saigmester. Saigmester is a world-renowned designer who is most famous for using a Zoro technique on his own skin when designing an AIGA invitation card back in ’99. He works with many freelancers to come up with new ideas for clients and this time he teamed up with NY-based Jessica Walsh.

(Taken from her behance portfolio) 

The campaign was a series of images and experimental typography that were then adapted to the storefront windows. She used variations in paint, bubbles, and fabric to phrases. The forms of the typography match the style of the clothing that is displayed on the mannequins.

The displays in Aizone in ABC Ashrafieh, Beirut:

Close up (baubles on the t-shirt)

The team also did the previous FW 2011 Aizone campaign:

(Taken from her behance portfolio) 

The behind the scenes video of this campaign is great because you get to see that the visuals were actually created rather than digitally done on Photoshop. 

Walsh is a great designer – according to behance, “she has worked with studios such as Sagmeister Inc, Pentagram Design and Print Magazine, and freelances for a variety of clients such as the The New York Times, AIGA, Computer Arts & I.D. Magazine, and Technology Review.” Check out her full behance portfolio here or her personal website.


You (Still) Love Uncle Jessie

John Stamos, or Uncle Jessie from Full House, was totally cool when I was a single-digit. His leather jacket and amazing hair made him my first celebrity crush. This is very awkward seeing that he, like my father, is double my age.

Being that he was the cool uncle on my favorite after school TV show until I moved on to more mature shows (Fresh Prince, Buffy & Boy Meets World), I’m not sure if his age makes me feel young or old. No matter what, this hilarious video he did for College Humor has deemed him worthy of the awesomesauce stamp. And he’s still handsome.

LPS: Lost Puppy Syndrome

By Nicholas Jackson

Overview & Facts:

Typically affecting 67% of fresh college graduates, the LPS is a fairly new medical condition. In the past, epidemics of the sort were rare for all youth had purpose; males would kill wild boar and females would be baby ovens. But with the evolution of man, the industrial & technological revolutions and the invention of lucrative fatty food delivery services, today’s young adults suffer from LPS: they are essentially lost puppies in a fast-paced world. They are overeducated and thus overqualified yet under-experienced embryos just waiting to develop into full-blown professionals. In search of the vocation that will give their lives meaning, allow them to provide, and buy their own Picanto, LPS patients are in a simmering state of panic at all times. Fear of failure and inevitable permanent employment at McDonald’s do not even outweigh the fear of mediocrity. After all, failing at starting your own business is still more admirable than being an Ivy League alumnus who scrapes feces off the sides of the Atlantis Resort turtle tanks.

Symptoms & Types:

  • Plummeting hope of ever being recruited although you attended a top ranked school, hold a degree with honors, and/or have a string of internships at reputable MNCs
  • Yesmanoritis, side-effect of LPS; you say “yes” to all available workshops, activities, volunteer work, and training sessions that can further differentiate you from the crowd only to find that they make you even more overqualified…and there’s no room left on your 1-page-only CV to include them; therefore, they go unnoticed
  • Early LPS is said to develop pre-university, around the age of 18 – this is a myth and is usually misdiagnosed. What is called early LPS is just the first stage to more unfriendly acronyms: LSD, THC, and STD. “Going to find yourself” is not a cure for anything, it is an excuse to go on a Eurotrip, experiment, and return with herpes. In reality, early LPS is just a teenager who listens to too much alternative rock.
  • Periodic eruptions of verbal vomit: whereamigoingwithmylifemaybeishouldjustapplyforanotherdegreeinsomething/ idontwanttogrowupsomeonebuymeajetski/ canibeagolddiggerilovekanyewest/ whydoihavetoalwaysfilloutapplicationsinterviewclothesaresorestricting. These are a result of the simmering state of panic described above. Recovery from these fits occur in seedy bars, overdosing on Chunky Monkey or spending the night spooning with a giant red bear named Optimus – and no, I don’t mean a ginger guy of Irish decent. Picture the Valentine version of the Gossamer from the Looney Tunes.
  • Settling for much less than deserved be it in position, compensation or respect out of pure desperation to be employed and never eat Ramen noodles again. This denial is accepted by repeating phrases like “everyone has to start at the bottom” or “everyone likes to staple.”

Diagnosis & Tests:

Testing positive for LPS is concluded by conducting quantitative and qualitative examinations.

– Increased level of dreams where you fail to learn a skill, complete a task or win a game. For example, Sean Connery tried teaching you how to wrestle a cobra a few nights back. The cobra ate you.
– Unnatural generic automated responses to all questions pertaining to the topic of job searches, future plans or prospects in anything relating to serious matters of your personal life.

– Increased level of copy/pasted inquiries on “availability in your department” as well as increased level of received rejections from online applications.
– Increased play count of alternative rock songs

Treatment & Care:

  • Accepting that this is completely normal, you are not alone. As stated above, 67% of others in the same age group with Bachelors, Masters and overrated MBAs are living with this condition too. They avoid the topic by cutting conversations short or trying to focus the limelight on someone’s success while simultaneously increasing the likelihood of depression. This is wrong. It’s okay to talk about it. Just not with possible prospective employers.
  • Remember why you worked so hard in the first place and what your goals are. The world will not end if things are not panning out the way you saw them in your head. “I used to want to be a ballerina/hairdresser with a donut shop on the side, but hey, shit happens.” But then, other shit happens, and sometimes it’s THE shit. Have a little faith.
  • Do not allow yourself to wallow in self pity…for too long. You are not going to get a job lying on the couch in your stained sweatpants smelling like fried cauliflower. Mary Catherine Gallagher said it best.
  • Have Mickey Mouse pancakes with lots of maple syrup and a small slice of butter. They make everything better and you forget you’re an adult without a future.

Living & Managing:

Sadly, not all people can relocate to a vacation island to sell coconuts hard-carved like celebrities, living off of rice cakes with a perpetual golden tan (that’s mine, copywritten so don’t copy me). Comparison will be the death of you. Stop thinking about others who are getting everything they want and a bag o’chips. Shakira is a successful Colombian-Lebanese singer and she’s going to have a toddler with nice Pique hair that has better dance moves than those creepy Evian babies. Should you care? No.

Exhaust all your resources. It is who you know combined with what you know, not just one or the other. Networking is important and not just behind a screen. Don’t be ashamed to ask for help.

Further Information:

As of recent studies, there has yet to be a cure discovered for LPS. Some physicians believe that it eventually passes, like a stint of acne that accompanies your adjusting hormones. Others believe that people learn to live with it by passing through the emerging stage of the syndrome, called growing up.

10 Reasons You Secretly Love the End of Summer

1. Expenses to Keep Up with the Expats

You no longer have to spend your salary on boozing festivities at rooftop bars, eating too much fried food or forking over ridiculous entrance fees at beaches – most of which takes half your gas tank’s contents to get to only to find that it still smells like a sewer and the pool water is unnaturally warm. Thanks a lot, kid. 

Your friends and relatives who flew in for the season are now flying back to their respective destinations on other continents. You can now go back to your series of world clocks and Skype dates. You will no longer be guilted into outings you can’t afford through the cleverly worded plea “come on, it’s my last week!” or “but I won’t see you until next summer [insert sad face here].” How on earth did you ever get anything done when everyone you knew still lived within a 20 minute drive? Oh right, you didn’t get anything done; you were a freeloading college student with dreams

2. Back to School Sections 

It was the best part about having to go back to school. Roaming through aisles of school supplies and wanting to be the one with the coolest pens, pencils, and the most original set of folders. And then you go to school and that girl with the light-up sneakers has the same ones. The smell of freshly sharpened pencils calms you down. NBD. I have the special edition sharpies, HA! 

Even when you’re not going back to school, these sections remind you of simpler times. Have no shame in buying a set of multicolored paperclips and impractical clover-shaped post-its “for the office.” Wink, wink. 

3. Tabkhas

Tabkhas, or home-cooked hot meals, were hiding during those sticky months when all you would hear is “no, it’s too hot for that, let’s just have cold cuts” or “salads are so fresh and light.” Given, it makes sense that you do not want to be sitting around a stove cooking in the non-ACed kitchen only to eat hot food because you need to get some meat on them bones to keep you warm. You are not Ivan Denisovitch; you don’t take your hat off and eat with a spoon to feel human. The last thing you want in July is something to keep you warm because you’re not in freezing gulag, you’re in Satan’s sauna. 

BUT, now that it’s gotten just a bit breezy and you can go back to sleeping with only your toes poking out of the covers, you want some lentil soup. You want rice, kale and all those dishes your Teta (grandma) makes in order to get you to visit her more often. 

Sweaters, Scarves and Hats – Oh my!

The wardrobe of Autumn/Winter allows for us all to become the Michelin army of cushiony squishiness. Not only do we wear layers of soft fabric and accessorize with scraps of more soft fabric but the fact that everything is hidden allows for some of us to become a wee bit cushiony ourselves. You don’t notice it as much since you’re covered up most of the time and there’s no pressure to look fit (there’s always pressure to be fit) because no one has to be half naked on the shore for another 5 to 9 months. 

Ah, the joys of inner beauty. I blame Teta’s cooking too. 

5. The Return of TV

All the series (well almost all, sorry GOT people) that left you hanging are to return so your life can be complete again. What were they thinking leaving you for so long? If they think that you’re just going to let them back into your life without a second thought, then they’ve got anoth– 

I’m Chuck Bass. 

Okay, you can come back. 

6. Sweets

Candycanes, candy corn, pumpkin pie, apple crumble, Halloween packs of fun size everythings and finally, the Bûche de Noël. I’ll trade in my ice popsicles for this stuff any day. 

7. Bubble Baths

You know what I mean. It’s been a long day and all you want to do is soak, play with bubbles, light some coconut candles and put on some Sade. Yes men, it’s not just you; ladies like to do this too. However, it’s difficult to enjoy the experience when the air is as hot as the water. 

Would you look at that? It’s 20 degrees outside. TIME FOR BATH SALTS.

8. Rain

So not everyone enjoys rain. It creates traffic, mud, and it messes up your hair. But everyone gets so ecstatic over the first real rainstorm. Facebook erupts with weather report statuses just in case you live in a Batcave and didn’t notice the leaking noise was not from your dark river of black to match the sinister echo of your secret abode.

That, and everyone loves reenacting this.

9. Toes 

The glorious time has come when you don’t have to look at people’s toes anymore. Goodnight sandals, goodnight flipflops, goodnight peep-toe shoes. Goodnight, cow jumping over the moon.

10. Countdown to December Begins

Holiday season countdowns only get real when the last one is truly over. The cold condensed cinnamon packed version of Summer is now 3 months away and everyone will be home again and everyone will love each other and deck the halls with boughs of holly and presents and happiness and New Years and marshmallows with hot cocoa and Christmas songs and…You’re broke again. Refer to reason #1. 

Empire State of Mind

Some of the funniest moments in life are when you realize you’ve been singing the wrong lyrics to a favorite song. And even after you find out what they’re supposed to be, you continue to sing them wrong anyway because “Dat’s my jam” and that’s how you sing it, okay? Don’t get me started on foreign language lyrics. 
This is a clip of 30 Rock’s Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) “quoting” from Alicia Keys & Jay’s
Empire State of Mind.

Excavation of a 20-Something’s Bedroom

After rearranging the furniture during a recent fit of insomnia, my bedroom was a labyrinth that poked at my latent OCD that I had buried deep inside me along with my secret unexplained urge to want to pinch the ass of a nice car. A5s be fine. Anyway, like most humans, I tend to get too caught up in the everyday routine. By the time I get a moment of peace, I will rarely want to waste it organizing the chaos that I have come to call my sanctuary (Kudos if you read that in Quasimodo’s voice). Because tomorrow’s always a day away, I rather just shove it all aside so there’s enough room for me and my laptop to fall asleep. What can I say, we’re very close.

Eventually, the time comes when enough is enough. As I was digging through the rubble of the accumulated possessions, I realized that this process has a Time Capsule Effect. This only occurs when you really dig though, like when you’re moving to a new house or trying to find your Fifa World Cup Brazil scarf from ’98.

A time capsule, for those who are not familiar, is an activity usually reserved for high school reunions and other moments where one may want to literally dig up the past. Participants can place mementos, tapes, videos, etc in the time capsule which will then be buried or locked away only to be opened at a later date where everyone can share in the reminiscing. 

Oddly, no matter how many times you rummage through your belongings, there will always be remnants of a close friend or flame that are no longer a part of your life. There’s no shame in it, they were once important to you and for whatever reason – be it a fight, flight or just life – now they’re just somebody that you used to know. Maybe it’s a nice reminder, maybe it’s bittersweet, or maybe it sucks. Whatever it is, there they are again. These artifacts usually come in the form of old birthday cards/notes, dried flowers, photographs, or a keychain they got you when they went to Prague once. Disposal of such things is a personal choice. Getting rid of the material presence may help the emotional presence if needed. But not much. 

Speaking of keychains, that’s another thing: souvenirs. Shot glasses, snow globes, postcards, figurines, lighters, magnets, and other trinkets that you collected as you and people you know traveled the globe. A lot of these destinations will be places you’ve never been to and may never go to. Some will be places you mark as your next stop. Souvenirs have become the new I-thought-of-you-when-I-was-here instead of the Here’s-proof-I-was-there.

Another collection- syllabi of completed classes, old exams of dropped ones. Original copies of textbooks you swore you’d need as a reference at some point in your career only to come to find that you wouldn’t use them because:
1) they’re not up to date 
2) they’re still incomprehensible even after you graduated
3) the effort is futile, you’ll just google it
4) all of the above.
You rationalize that these will still be good references to have, buying them another couple of years on your shelf where they will collect dust and no resale value whatsoever. This is called guilt. It’s okay, we all paid $85 for a book we were too afraid to use a highlighter on. Just recycle it and stop hoarding.

As you continue your exploration, even Howard Carter wouldn’t be able to fathom why you still have notes from an elective you never liked. If you have already graduated, you will be looking at these and wondering how you ever survived a whole semester/quarter of that professor and her stories about waiting for food stamps during the Cold War or the other guy who always smelled like a cocktail of garlic and Nescafe. The best part of these notes though, will be the doodles and random scribbles that were added by classmates that you forgot you knew. Maybe you will look for them on LinkedIn just to see if they’re doing anything remotely rewarding now.

Old boxes for electronics you have already replaced, manuals you will never read and software you will never install. There’s probably a nylon bag of instructions in 4 languages for a printer that doesn’t work or is out of ink. It’s either sitting under your desk or in an electronics place in Dahieh as of 14 months ago. 

If you’re lucky, you’ll find a present that you have yet to have the chance to gift. It may be one of those just-in-case gifts you’re mom stocks up on or a gift you got someone while they were abroad. Sometimes, the latter may not get the chance to see the intended recipient because too much time will pass. You inherit a goody bag. That would explain a set of teaspoons, a candy-filled yoyo, a wooden model motorcycle, a phallic glass Eiffel of cognac, and a bar of honey soap shaped like a bee with a minijar of honey swiped from the table at that swanky cafe that had overpriced chocolat chaud.

Novels you haven’t had the chance to read, free samples of perfumes/colognes/creams, receipts from late nights at the Hamra pubs, one teddy bear, and a NY Yankees cap. All the little things that you cling to because “I might need this later”/”I can’t throw THAT away!” will be packed away only to be found on your next journey where you will say the same phrase and save it from the grasps of a sukleen truck or charity bin. 

Looking back is an interesting odyssey especially when you know what happened after those periods in your life. Sometimes, but not always, it is good to see what and who got you to the now.