Saturday, September 13, 2014

About Ray Rice...

So Alex asked me on Facebook, how I would "spin" the "Ray Rice Situation." First, a bit of education.

I'm a public relations professional. As such, I am entrusted with the reputation management of my clients. I, am not, however, a liar. Most PR people are not liars, like most accountants are not liars, or most doctors are not liars, but some are... not because they work in PR, but because they are not ethical human being. Unethical human beings exist in every profession.

Generally, I have a client who is good at their craft, their art, their profession, but not so good at telling the world about their specialty. If they make floor tiles, they truly believe their floor tiles are the best and it's my job to show passion to the world. If there is a floor tile recall, it's my job to make sure all sides of the story are told - positive AND negative. PR people are diplomats, really. Because most people want to believe that the world is black OR white. That people are good OR bad. It's our job to proactively showcase all the good you don't know and in times of crisis, reactively show all sides of the story.

Now, that you don't think I'm a total scumbag, let me share one of my favorite quotes with you: "If you want people to respect your brand, HAVE A RESPECTABLE BRAND."

As a PR person, I stand on this philosophy. I cannot "spin" the "Ray Rice situation" because from what I can tell, he doesn't have a respectable brand. I can't make him look any better, because the facts are STARING in your face. There's nothing else to say. He messed up. He needs to move to Montana, finish his college degree and get a regular job like a regular person.

HOWEVER, as a PR person, I can't help but point out some facts that MAY make you think about the situation differently. And if Ray Rice WAS my client, here would be some of my key points to share with the media and the general public.

DISCLAIMER: These are not my thoughts. These are how I would counsel a client in talking points, IF I had a publicity client in the NFL who made a mistake, which I do not. 

1. It is ABSOLUTELY UNACCEPTABLE for the media to play the Ray Rice video in its entirety over and over again. Imagine the worst thing that ever happened to you, in your life, now imagine CNN had that footage and showed it on a 24-hour loop, back-to-back? 

As a victim of domestic violence, there is no reason for Janay Rice to have to relive day-in and day-out the media's scrutiny of her decision to keep her family together OR witness the violence that endured firsthand on her TV screens. If news stations won't show injuries of sports players, due to their graphic nature, the women of America should be given the same respect. Our society should be ashamed of how it treats victims of domestic violence and impedes their ability to heal.

2. Ray Rice has admitted fault, he has apologized, he has served the sentence that was given to him by a United States court of law and he is seeking to reform himself and put his family back together, privately. Opening the wounds that he inflicted on his family more than three months ago will not help him, nor will it help any other domestic violence victims or families trying to heal from similar ordeals. 

3. The American justice system and governing bodies in sports (NFL, NBA, MLB) are extremely inconsistent in their punishment of players and that is what the public should be upset about. When a top quarterback in the NFL has settled a lawsuit of sexual abuse neither admitting or denying fault, one wonders if these bodies really hold their players to the high standard they claim to or if they, instead, take every opportunity possible to eliminate lesser-paid, lower-value scapegoats to change the conversation about what is and isn't acceptable in professional sports leagues. While Ray Rice has admitted his mistakes and paid for them with his job, the NFL and other professional sports leagues carry on like they haven't ignored player transgressions in the past. This culture of cover-ups must change. Our professional athletes must be excellent on- and off the field. This is what Americans should care about.

So... would you hire me?    

Monday, September 1, 2014

Tea's Tangents: Labor Day Edition

I am currently writing this blog post in order to procrastinate from doing the work that I have due at 9 p.m. What's worse, my coworker who's collaborating on this presentation with me just texted like: hey, I'll call you in 45 minutes to an hour. I'm like what can I do that takes about that long.

  • I just balanced my checkbook and I missed an entire trip to Chicago's worth of expenses. Sprinkles, Sweet Maple Cafe, Harold's, Gas for a rental car (or my car or my mama's car, I can't remember). Just a mess.
  • I stayed in Pittsburgh for Labor Day and it was a good time. Not a "I put up with this because I live here" good time. But legitimate fun was had. I went to two bbqs (free food for the win!), a wine bar in a hipster neighborhood (to kick it with my student boos who can never go out because they're always in the library) 2 club parties (at the same 2 clubs I always go to, but there were out of town people, so it was a better time) and a boat party (with a pregame with free food and drank). 
  • Except for two event, most of what I went to was for the Ques weekend. Shout out to my connect for the free tickets. He put me and four of my girls on. AND this was the most drama-free set of Greek events I have ever experienced. It was like going to a family reunion and all your cousins or uncles are Ques. If you want to visit me, Labor Day would be a good time to do it. 
  • Separate, but related, it's so cheap here. Went to the bar with a bootential and he bought two drinks and the bartender's like: $13. He's not from here, he was like wait... for real? LOL! Now that I know people come in from out of town, I may spend more holidays here. It's cheaper and more relaxing. 
  • This weather is disrespectful. It's ALWAYS raining in Pittsburgh. Now, I know you all think I exaggerate, so I have some numbers. *Phaedra Parks voice* Everybody knows it rains a lot in Portland, Oregon, Right? Well, on average, Portland gets 153 days of rain per year. Pittsburgh gets 152. This weather doesn't believe in seasons. It's like yeah, I'm going to rain every month, no matter what the season. 
  • Speaking of weather, I had a pumpkin spice latte today. On September 1, the unofficial last day of summer. I'm disrespectful too. 
  • Speaking of disrespectful, why are people wearing leather calf and knee high boots already? I swear, I JUST put my boots up. I'm trying to flip flop it out until it's less than 50 degrees outside. Oh, how I love summer.
  • Off to do work now... How was your Labor Day Weekend? Anyone do Made in America in Philly? Yacht week (wherever that was)? Concerts? Clubs? BBQs? Family Reunions? I know I'm not the only one who spent a better part of today working and checking email to make sure I'm not behind tomorrow. I can't be the only one living this life.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

The Story Behind the Neurosis

My [Chicago] friends know that I'm extremely punctual. I'm always early to the party, such that I'm helping with cooking and decorations. I'm not ashamed of it. It's who I am.

I got stood up for a date tonight. It's the second time this has happened in two months. Getting stood up in 2014 isn't like I'm sitting at a restaurant waiting for a date and no one shows up (though that has happened. Shout out to dating. It's so fun.) Getting stood up in 2014, is like we talked on Friday and said we'd meet on Saturday at 7, then you didn't call or text to say WHERE to meet... or answer my calls or text to answer that question.

This sucks. It sucks for anyone, but it sucks for me because it opens up historical wounds. My biological father has a substance abuse problem. If you ever know anyone with that problem, you know that they make promises they can't keep and they lie a lot.

When I was a little girl, he used to say he was coming a lot and never did. He would tell me things he was going to buy me for Christmas or my birthday and he, of course, never delivered.

My mom's first husband (my "dad" who passed away when I was nine) would talk to me like an adult when I couldn't have been more than 6 or 7 and say things like "Do you really think he's coming?" I was an intelligent, precocious child, but my cognitive abilities weren't that sharp yet. OF COURSE, he's coming. He said he was coming. Why would anyone say they were going to do something they're not going to do?

So, as an adult, I work to be upfront and honest (sometimes bluntly honest, sorry, y'all.) If I say I'm coming to your birthday party, I'll be there. If I have a deadline at work, I'll meet it. And to make sure no one is ever waiting for me to show up for hours on end and feeling abandoned like I did as a toddler, I arrive to things early.

So, yes, arriving to social events is crazy. Living my life by my calendar is crazy. Expecting people to do what they say they're going to do is crazy (or is it really). And maybe cutting a guy off who could produce a perfectly good story about how/why he couldn't make an appointment that we scheduled is harsh, but one never quite heals from being lied to as a child and I would rather not deal with all of the feelings that come up each and evey time this happens to me as an adult.

So the moral of this story is, when people seem strange, odd or even crazy to you, know that they are that way for a reason and try to empathize with the fact that you don't know their story. BUT, ALSO don't stand people up. :-)

Friday, August 29, 2014

Working On My Day Off...

I'm in the office today and everyone else got the day off as an incentive for doing something. I technically have the day off too, but stuff is due at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, so instead of wasting Monday night doing work, I just came into the office today.

Also, I do not like working from home. I do not have a home office. My job activities are stressful. I do not like stress or drama in my home. Once you cross my door step it's like a spa, a shrine, a sanctuary, a playhouse (on Fridays, LOL!), but it not an office. It feels like everything work is not. Just peaceful and wonderful and I don't want anything not peaceful and not wonderful in my home.

Here's the problem with working on your day off. There is no accountability. No meetings to make you get the work done before you go into another meeting. No responses from coworkers to questions you have with the answers you need to get to the next step.

There is also the "save for later" stuff you have been meaning to do that is work-related and billable, but really has nothing to do with what you ACTUALLY came into the office to do in the first place.

I'm getting ready to watch an hour-long video that is mandatory for me to watch that someone sent me in March because my time doing so will be uninterrupted.

Then after that, I will get tired, not do what I came in here to do, and go home and take a nap. Well, that's what USUALLY happens, but I'm not claiming that today. Today, I WILL finish the deck I came in here to work on (it's always a deck... planning takes way more time than doing.)

I will get it done. Meanwhile, I'm hyping myself up while writing a blog post... which is not what I came in here to do. Let me go see if my latest Facebook photo album has any more likes.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Always Tired

It's 12:55 a.m. and I'm about to stop working. I'm not done, but I'm stopping. Last week, I only worked 41.75 hours, but I was just as tired as if I worked my regular 50 hours. And if I work 60 hours, still tired. 70 hours, still tired.

I had something to do after work every day last week. Doctor's appointment, volunteering, a play that my company gave me free tickets too, a team outing and restaurant week dinner with my friends.

My weekend was like this Sat: pay bills, volunteer at Family House, grocery shop, Steelers game with one of my mentees. Sun: Grocery shop for church picnic (Pastor called me while I was at the game, talmbout, can you bring a meat dish.) Cook for the church picnic, laundry, church picnic, work, Pittsburgh Black Media Federation "Still Feel Like Going On" teen boys photo exhibit, work.

This reminds me, I probably still have a load in the washer from yesterday.

Tomorrow I have to take a client's best friend's underage child to dinner after work. Wednesday, I'm double booked. I'm supposed to presenting to the Children's Sickle Cell Foundation and mentoring with Gwen's Girls. (My mentee told me she doesn't like it when I switch my days. I hope I taught her that being flexible does not mean that I don't care and that she can trust me to be there, but I don't know that the message came through. It did, however, make me feel guilty for not coming some Wednesdays. I love and miss those girls!)

Thursday, happy hour for a coworker that's leaving and I actually like her, so I'm going. Friday morning at 8 a.m. I'm driving to Chicago for a church choir reunion. 2 rehearsals, a meet and greet, 2 Sunday services THEN I'm driving back to the 'Burgh on Monday, which will be followed by another grueling 50-hour work week.

I'm declaring next Saturday (the Saturday before Labor Day) is Tea Day. I'm not doing A THING! (Unless a friend has a party, in which case, I'm going, but hopefully that will be Friday night and I can just chill Saturday).

I still need to send out an invite for the Black Marketers Network I'm creating and do nonprofit work for a board I joined. When am I going to do this, Lord?

I've said no to a lot of stuff [a ton of stuff] in Pittsburgh already, but I think I may, possibly, probably, kind of... be overextended. What y'all think?

Also have to be at work at 7 a.m., so this "nap" I'm about to take will be delicious.

Good night.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Asking For Help

So I have a problem with asking for help. Like most problems, I didn't know I had that problem until someone pointed it out. I had a recipe fiasco and my homeboy says, why didn't you just ask me, I love to cook. And I was thinking, well... I didn't know I couldn't make that recipe until I failed. In my head, why would I ask for help before I knew I needed it.

So yesterday, I couldn't come up with something to cook for the church picnic and I hit my cousin, culinary artist extraordinaire up and she helped me come up with some ideas.

The most exciting part about this is that I didn't have any heartburn whatsoever about asking. I just realized I had a deficit. I found someone with a surplus and I asked for what I needed.

I wonder sometimes, if people reading this blog, go DUH all the time, but I swear the simplest things are the easiest ways to stop me from progressing. And things may seem simple to everyone else, but this is a breakthrough for me.

So here's to asking for help whether I think I need it or not and here's to all the people in my corner and in my circle who are willing to provide it!

Happy Sunday y'all.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

In Corporate News

Lots of good stuff coming out of the east coast today: 

A local ad firm reaches out to high school students. Is it any wonder they now want to work in PR. *thinking of a master plan*

How to Choose Social Tools to Fit Your Business (written by my colleague). Many brands/agencies struggle with this, so she has some tips for ya!

Women in PR and Chicagoans especially, check out the Women in PR Summit

D.C., Philly, NYC folks check out this GOALS Conference coming up in Philly in October.

PR people all over the world, check out the details of the National Black Public Relations Society Conference and Career Fair, November 6-9 in Fort Lauderdale, FL.

I think that's enough for the day. Adds to my to-do list:

1. Create website for yourself
2. Host a professional blog on said website.
3. Just finish Tuesday. LAWD, I have so much to do!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Fascinating Article...

About a Christian doctor who performs abortions in Mississippi.

It's long.
It's good.
It made me question some things I think.
It made me want to subscribe to Esquire.
It made me disable my comments to this post.


Friday, August 8, 2014

Bloom Where You're Planted

I saw someone post that to Instagram and it really inspired me. It's truly how I live my life. I live in weak sauce Pittsburgh, but people swear I love it here because they see my photos and I'm happy and I'm out SEVERAL nights a week, despite folks swearing that there's nothing to do here. You can take an extrovert out of Chicago, but you can't take the extrovert out of her. Here are things I've either done and/or am looking forward to in Pittsburgh.

What I've done already 
10. Rooftops. I have found some rooftops worthy of visiting. Namely, Uptown across from the Consol Center. I.LOVE.IT.THERE! Also, Six Penn is awesome and Tavern 245.

9. Family Reunion - My Pastor's blood family had a family reunion last weekend and they invited me to a couple of the festivities. My heart is swelling with gratitude. I couldn't have experienced that if I was at Ovio living it up.

8.  Family House - I only volunteer there on weekends and hadn't been since the first weekend in June. I'm volunteering twice in August, which gets me back up to my commitment of once a month. I may do more if my schedule allows. Giving back keeps me whole.

7. Pittsburgh Culture - I always score free tickets to things and last week I got free tickets to the Pirates game and Spamalot. You can't beat free with a stick AND most of this stuff is walking distance from my apartment.

6. Bar hopping - Every time I leave the house in Pittsburgh, I spend $0-$40 and still have a great time. I miss the cheapness of this city when I leave it.

What's coming up
5. Hosting get togethers. I'm throwing a pre-game shindig for a new friend at my house this evening and nothing makes me happier. I love entertaining.

4. Hot dog day at church. I'm on the Women's Day committee at church and we have some money to raise, but I haven't been here all Sunday. I'll finally be home to contribute and as lame as it may sound, I'm excited to get my grill on.

3. Dream Cream - It's Ice Cream that Makes a Difference. Can't beat that with a stick!

2. Hanging with new friends - This article states it best, but moving to a new place gives you an opportunity to hang with people you would have NEVER hung out with in your hometown. Did I say NEVER... no diss. I disagree fundamentally with so many people I spend time with in this city, but I'll be damned if I'm not building character.

1. No Line, No waiting! I can get into everything here for free... all the time. I did, however, stand in line to go to Art's last week, while two "VIP" dudes walked in front of me. It was one of the more humbling things that's ever happened in muh life.


I have the worst case of FOMO in life. Not only am I missing Chicago like crazy today, but I feel like every weekend that I'm in Pittsburgh I'm missing out on something going on somewhere else.

Por ejemplo:

Over the past couple of weeks, here are the things I have not done.

1. Go to the Posh Paris Party in Chicago
2. Go to the Greatest Day Ever Party in NYC
3. Go to Caribana or Ovio in Toronto.
4. Go to the Beyonce concert anywhere (Going to regret this for years to come)
5. Lollapalooza

This weekend, here's what I'm missing in Chicago.
6. Luvvie's Blogiversary Party
7. The Red Pump Project's 5th Anniversary concert with Chaka Khan (I mean, come on!)
8. Thursday nights at Nouveau Tavern (I haven't partied on Thursdays in YEARS, but for some reason, I feel like I would enjoy this.)
9. Glenn's Bday. I know there were festivities.
10. The Bears/Eagles game at Soldier Field tonight (And I don't even like preseason).

Want to hear the good news, at least one of my friends made it to all of these events, so I live vicariously through them. I don't know if this is good or bad for my fomo. #KanyeShrug 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Blessing of Friendship

This weekend, I had the opportunity to attend my grandmother's surprise 75th birthday party. My mom and her six siblings put together a wonderful program where people from different parts of my grandma's life all spoke. We heard from her senior club, that she's been a member of for five years and never misses a Thursday fellowship meeting. We heard from one of the drivers from the church who picks her up for first Sunday service.

We heard from a school administrator who talked about her volunteer work as the "book store" lady at my mom, aunts and uncle's grammar school. Side note: Even as a woman with no college degree, she knew the value of education. When she wasn't working she was IN THE SCHOOL volunteering, watching over her kids and contributing to the lives of others' children.

The speech that really touched me the most was from her girlfriend of 60+ years. Ms. Lee Bertha. She noted how all it takes is a conversation with my grandma to make everything better. First, that's 'cause my grandma is awesome, but can you imagine what's it's like to share a problem with someone who's known you for 60 years? Ms. Lee Bertha and others noted how grandma is the epitome of grace and calm under fire and how when you tell her a secret, she will take it to the grave with her.

Speaking of graves, my grandfather passed in 1996. May he rest in peace. But now, 18 years later, who's still in my grandma's corner? Who's still her right hand? Her shoulder to lean and cry on? Her hand to hold, her arms to embrace, her ears to listen: her girlfriends.

I'm so happy that I have strong relationships with my girlfriends and can't wait to see how that dynamic is enhanced as I add family members (husband, children, grandchildren). If history is an indicator of the future, I can say with certainty that my relationships with my girlfriends will be the longest lasting [and possibly most fulfilling] relationships of my life. I'm so blessed to have a head start on 40+ years of friendship with so many women and even more blessed to have experienced grandma and Ms. Lee Bertha's relationship dynamic yesterday.

Wishing you all lifetimes of wonderful friendships!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Over It

I'm so over dating. It's like bills to me. I'm not going to stop paying my bills (or dating), but sometimes you just look at the money going out and you're like, you know what, I'm over this.

I'm sick of the getting to know you phase. I want to skip straight to cuddling on the couch after dinner. Let me humor you with some of my recent shenanigans.

  • I'm talking to a dude and he apologizes for not keeping in touch. He's "going through some stuff" with his ex. #Ew #DoNotWant 
  • I am so sick of asking dudes what they do for a living. It's like pulling teeth to get an honest answer. If I hear business administration, retail, I'm in the medical field or some other mask for a high- or low-paying job, I may scream.
  • A text conversation with a dude fron Tinder:

Him: What are you up to
Me: I just left church and dinner?
Him (WITHOUT ME ASKING): I just got in from the dealership... I want to drive to Pittsburgh to come see you.
Me: That's a long drive. Do you like road trips.
Him: Love them. Plus, I just got a new car.
Me: That's cool.
Him: proceeds to send me 3 pictures of his new Benz, complete with the jail pose in front of the car.

Something about my profile must scream: BASIC, 'cause he thought I cared.

  • And finally, I HATE repeating myself. It's one of my biggest pet peeves. New dude (but not THAT new) hits me up. Wants to know how my day was. It's 9 p.m. I'm still at work. I say: I'm still at work. He goes "Wow, Long day?" We've literally had this same exact conversation before. I work long hours. I try to keep them in perspective. Yes, I worked 12 hours today, but I could have also spent 12 hours LOOKING for a job. I'm blessed. I spent my entire weekend NOT working. It's OK. 
  • Unless you're inviting me somewhere other than work (which he is not), then I'm not really going to commiserate with you about how hard life is and how many hours I work. I can't with miserable dudes. (He's not just miserable because he asked me about a long day. He's miserable because he's never happy when I talk to him. He tries to bring me down with him. I ain't going fam.) 
I wish I was one of those people who wanted to take a dating/relationship hiatus. Those people are truly free. No partner bogging them down. No potentials wasting their time. I'm not them though. I like to keep my options open.

Thus, I deal with f*ckery daily.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Tea's Tangents: Part 3

Ok, a couple more things from when I was unpacking last week. My who time flies.

1. I left my headphones in the pocket of the shirt I wore on the plane to Barcelona and then washed said shirt in our convenient washer/drying in our AirBNB apartment. Now the left side works only. On the bright side, at least the left side works!!!

2. Forget squats. If you want a booty move into a walk-up. My friend in NYC lived in a 4th floor walk-up and our apartment in Barcelona was a 4th floor walk-up and for some reason you had to walk DOWN two flights of stairs to every club in Barcelona, so at the end of the night, we were walking up 2 more flights of stairs. By the end of the trip, my little bump was sitting up nicely... or maybe it was all those tapas. LOL!

I really am going to try to use the stairs more at work and at home. Ask me about it if you see me.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Can You Hear Me Now?

Remember when I got sick in January? Of course you don't. No one remembers when someone else was sick, but I remember it. It was a miserable month. I had a cold, followed by a sinus infection and leftover Eustacian Tube Dsyfunction.

I got to the ENT and they give me steroids to take off the pressure. The pressure was removed, but my ear was still clogged when the meds were done.

I go to my primary care physician for my annual exam and physical and she sees something in my ear and is like: you need to go back to the ENT.

Go back and they said my hearing was actually BETTER than it was the first time I went in. Makes no sense.

The thing is pressure in your ear doesn't affect your hearing as much as you think it was. The point is there was crazy pressure. It SEEMED like I couldn't hear and I was sick of it.

Short of surgery and waiting there was really nothing that I could do.

The doc removed some ear wax and looks at me and says: does that make it better? Naw dude. Some ear wax is not stopping my ear from unclogging. Then he says something that gets to the bottom on the conversation.

He said there was something strange about how my jaw was clenched. Hmm... well, I grind my teeth at night. It's mostly due to stress and I have a mouthguard, but I hate to wear it. I've gotten it sized and resized and it stills bruises the inside of my cheeks. So I can either have grinded down teeth or bruised cheeks. I guess at the end of the day, I can replace my teeth. My jaws are irreplaceable.

I also just feel like a 13 year old with a retainer. And I've never worn braces or a retainer so going to bed with something in my mouth just seems crazy.

Anywho, I tell the ENT I grind my teeth. He suggests I wear my mouthguard. He then says: Do you chew gum. I'm like hell yeah, every day.

Side note: from the ages of about 9-12 (or something like that) I had tonsilitis. I didn't get frequent strep throat like the lucky kids. Nope, I had a growth in the back of my throat that smelled like death and dismemberment, so people who know me from that error probably think my breath stinks.

As such, I have a complex about stinky breath and you'd be hard pressed to find me more than 2 feet away from gum, mints or mouthwash at any given moment.

I digress.

The ENT doctor told me: stop chewing gum.

And just like that, I'm cured.

Let me run this back. I get stressed out. Grind my teeth. It locks my jaw and/or something connected to my ear drum. I can't hear. I chew gum and it makes it worse.

So if I stop chewing gum, I can hear.

This is the dumbest diagnosis on the face of the planet, except it was free and it worked.

Further, I still have high frequency sensorineural hearing loss and that will just get worse over the course of my life time. So when you ask: Can you hear me now, the answer is likely a strong maybe.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Keep the Party Going

Missing a flight is not the worst thing that can happen. For starters, I didn't even know where I was going to be staying Friday night. I could always go to my mom's house by default, but sometimes it's fun to stay with friends AND that's the only way I can ensure that I'll see them.

Here's what I did since I missed my flight.

1. Canceled Comcast (Usual bill $137.45. Final bill: $19.33). I have no cable, but I still feel like I'm winning.
2. Tried to cancel my Beyonce tickets to Houston. I got a presale, so they're not going. I think I'm going to donate them to charity. 
3. Set up my new internet. I wasn't going to get to do that until Monday.
4. Got my name on the list for a new club opening in Pittsburgh today.
5. Ate a sensible dinner.
6. Wrote two blogs

7. Painted my nails 
8. Caught up with Pittsburgh friends I haven't seen in at least three weeks
9. Got fly
10. Hit the streets

Worst things could have happened than missing a flight. The car could have blown up and my coworker and I could have died and/or had third degree burns.

I'm so happy I just missed my flight instead.

P.S. I totally forgot to call yellow cab and cancel that second cab. The cabbie yelled at me and told me to call dispatch to cancel. I forgot. It's about 3 hours later now. I think they get the point. That inconsiderate karma will come back to me (or maybe I already got it. I mean, I do frequent the Unitepost office). Ah well.