The Tangential: I Hate Greeting Cards

These are my thoughts on greeting cards, largely spurred by Becky Lang over at thetangential:

Give it a read:

My family has learned to expect the bitter disappointment of not receiving a greeting card from me at every holiday/ birthday/ major life event. But they know it’s against the fiber of my most basic beliefs Here’s why:1. Their name doesn’t even make sense.I wanted to say “I hate cards,” but...
My thoughts:
I wouldn't say "I hate cards" as much as I hate card companies. I have been conducting my own private protest against the iconic Hallmark empire for quite some time. It started about 8 years ago, when I applied for a position as a writer for Hellmark. You wouldn't believe ALL the crap you have to do just to "apply" with the Good Folks at HM. For starters if memory serves me, the application was about 100 pages long. (I exaggerate, more like 20- but if felt like 100). Buried in this Novella of an application were various and totally unrelated 'exercises'.
For example: "We (at Hellmark) have a marketing department that contracts to various corporations. One of our customers is a commercial airline. Design an ad campaign for an airline detailing a frequent flyer program and how you would market it." OK, for starters- almost ALL of the airlines have a 'frequent flyer' program, and they pretty much ALL work the same (fly more, get more 'free' credits/miles/flights, etc.) So this little exercise was for what? The only way to 'improve or be more original would be to GIVE away FREE flights for no reason whatsoever! All I wanted to do was write Shoebox cards! Geez. Buried deep inside me is a sitcom writer that would have been perfectly content writing one-liner Shoebox cards till the ripe old age of 60-something. But did they ask for "humor" examples? NO. It was all sappy, lovey, I'm-so-lost-without-you-in-my-lifewriting scenarios. Really. The ridiculous exercises were zapping all the frigging fun out of applying for this job AND I could care less about your damn Marketing Department. Was this an application OR was it really just a sneaky way to steal fresh ideas without actually paying anyone to think them up?
If that wasn't bad enough, you had to turn in a BAP (big ass portfolio), PowerPoint presentation, video of you begging for the job -in 3 minutes or less, a Story Board of some sort (the content escapes me now), and artwork. HellO! I'm applying for Writer, I believe you hire Artists for artwork. Anyway...I'm sure the only REAL reason I didn't get the job was because I am not that kind of artist OR that they did not see the "quality" and appreciate the passion in my 7-year-old's butterfly and flowers coloring page I sent in with the rest of my portfolio. Hmmph. Their loss.
btw: I did take a position with a new 'card company', mine. I designed my own logo and proudly display it on the back of all of my original works. The Cracked Crown company.

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How I Got the Name "Morticia"

Several years ago I sent my niece a birthday card and jokingly signed it: The Addams Family, Uncle Gomez, Aunt Morticia and Cousin It. The only resemblance to the weird and wacky Addams' Clan and mi familia is that we both shared the same an "A" in our sir names. But I’m weird and I do stuff like that to entertain my family (more like myself).   
A few days later, I was on the phone with one of our field guys, John. John had a traveling job, the kind job that if he did not travel, he did not get paid. His office was a laptop, a suitcase and a cell phone and John traveled a lot. He traveled all over the US and globally as well. I was only fortunate enough to see him in our home office once or twice a year and we talked (on the phone) only a few times more than that. Nonetheless, he was my friend and a good one. While talking with John on the phone that day besides 'business', we caught each other up on family stuff and I mentioned the birthday card. Well John thought that was a hoot and immediately started calling me Morticia. He'd given nicknames to several of our coworkers. The guy I worked with in the office was "Gramps" long before his was a Grandparent. But that was how John was, if he liked you, you got a nickname.
Later I found the picture of Angelica Houston as Morticia so I put on a wig, paled my makeup and took a picture, then I shopped my head into it and it became my "Halloween persona" once a year in October. But to John, I was Morticia every time he called.
John died in an accident 2 years ago. He was 51 years old and left a wife and 3 kids. So now, I called myself Morticia for fun and in memory of my friend, John.
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