Category Archives: Pointless musings

Charlottesville: Marcia :: Roanoke: Jan

Oooh, look at pretty blonde Charlottesville and her fancy new SXSW-clone “happening,” Tom Tom Founders Festival.

Cville, Cville, Cville!

Charlottesville gets all the sexy stuff, and we get dumpy old Norfolk Southern cheating on us with our dumb cousin Norfolk. What, you think just because “Norfolk” is in your name that it makes sense to have more of your employees there? Sounds inbred to me. I hope your kids turn out fugly. And if you’re gonna have a distributed workforce anyway, why couldn’t you cheat on Atlanta? Huh??? Why? What does she do for you that I never did? Why don’t you love ME?

Charlottesville doesn’t have this problem. They’re all like, “what? No, haha lol, I can totally eat this Royale with cheese and still look great in my bikini. LOL, I don’t even exercise, I just never gain weight! LMFAO love ya babez TTYL”

And do we seethe? No, not really; it’s copacetic. I hadn’t even heard of this new festival until this morning, and it starts in two weeks. Have you heard of it? Are you going? Are you interested in driving me? I call shotgun.

I was planning on finishing up that weird post about coworking today, but I thought this might be more interesting. Just wanted to bring it to the attention of my readers, in case all both of you had missed the news. (Hi Mom! Hi Dad!)

And if ya don’t know, now ya know.

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Filed under Charlottesville, Pointless musings, Start-up culture

The Little Coworking Space That Could: the “unpublishable first draft” edition

You’re about to read a list.

MovelineThe Black Sheep; Heyo; BeHealth SolutionsVirtualU; Marketing Stick; Skill-capped; Ace of Sales; Rural System and Koofers.

What do these have in common? They are all IT start-ups and alumni of TechPad in Blacksburg. There are actually many more companies listed, but they either didn’t have clickable links from TechPad’s member page or the links were dead.

Even if you don’t know anything about these companies or their viability, that is a pretty impressive list.

I’m not sure where I’m going with this. It would be tempting but lazy to compare TechPad with CoLab in Roanoke and say, “See! Blacksburg is a more natural fit for tech start-ups; just look at that long list and compare to the – shall we say – meager start-up offerings on tap at CoLab!”

That would be a jerk thing to do, though, because all indications are that CoLab really is succesful. They don’t turn paying members away at the door just because their business ideas don’t revolve around disruption and/or unicorns (those are buzzwords, y’all). CoLab is a place for all kinds of workers and small businesses. It’s inclusive!

So, yeah, why AM I writing about TechPad…maybe if I keep tapping away at the keyboard there will be magic. Beep boop bop boop beep…

Nothing yet…

Oh, I know: coworking. Yeah…yeah!

Here’s the thing, right, about coworking or whatever:


:::fuck it, I lost my train of thought.

Did I mention that I hit my head doing pull-ups at the gym tonight? True story. I pulled my head right up into the bar. And I’ve got beastly strength, too. Probably gave myself brain damage like a boss.

Write more tomorrow? Question mark…

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Filed under Blacksburg Start-ups, Coworking, Pointless musings

People Are Weird: Xperience2015 Edition

It is hard to know whether weird people feel empowered by social media to be themselves, or if normal people are compelled toward awkwardness in their use of same, but either way, Twitter can produce odd outcomes in what outwardly seem straightforward exchanges.

Case in point: had a fella take the time to delete his depressed, cry-for-help tweet and respond to my response by telling me that responding to me wasn’t “worth his time” and then HE called ME weird. What?

Totally and completely beside the point, except I wrote him because he tweeted that he felt even more isolated in Roanoke after attending Xperience2015. Assuming that was a genuine statement, I responded like Daniel L. Crandall, with care and compassion. That didn’t work out so well.

None of that matters at all beyond the fact that I was following #xperience2015 and other related tags because I was really curious how this “Xperience” xperiment was going to work out. I want to be supportive of efforts to recruit and retain young professionals, but I’m just not sure they work. For instance, the premise of Xperience 2015 seems to have been that there are young professionals here in the Valley who need to be convinced to stay, and that an inclusive conference setting is a way to introduce them to people, ideas, and activities they didn’t already know about and which might help anchor them here in Noke. That doesn’t sound like an outrageously good time to me, and I have at least one really close friend on Twitter who thinks slitting his wrists would have been a more profitable use of his time.

Seriously, though, consider the example of Mr. Twitter. He is apparently a local young professional, and he made an effort to connect, giving up his Friday night and Saturday to do so. That is not nothing; that is a real commitment and a real attempt. What happened at this event that so badly backfired for this guy?

Were this a standard “networking” opportunity, I would first question whether this guy tends toward a wallflower personality, and second whether he knows himself well enough to know that he was not going to enjoy mingling at a cocktail party.

But I’m going to defend him and say (regardless of his personality type) the event certainly should not have been structured like that, and if it was, shame on the organizers. Folks who know how to schmooze and network don’t need a big dumb networking event to expand their network of people with whom to network. While I’m not opposed to that kind of crap generally, if the purpose of your event is to retain young people who are having a HARD TIME CONNECTING, then you have to make it easy for them and not herd ’em all into a room and just expect magical connections to start forming. If they were good at that sort of shit, they’d have already done it.

But on the other hand!: Yeah, so, on the other hand, we’re talking about a guy who tweeted his isolation and turned on the one person who responded with real empathy. So there’s that.

I’m willing to give this guy all the benefits of all the doubts – because it is my blog and I can – and say it is entirely possible he was joking about his isolation, or maybe he just got dumped by his girlfriend and so wasn’t in a great state of mind either at Xperience or on Twitter, or maybe he just thought I was trolling him. The force of my sexy baller persona is extremely intimidating; perhaps he couldn’t handle it. There are many possibilities.

To sum up, Xperience2015 may or may not have been a success/train wreck and people on Twitter are bitter/compassionate/weird/hopeful/confused.

Solid post.

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Filed under Pointless musings

A post about not posting

Well, good afternoon, everybody!

You may not believe this, but Grandin Republic is not a money making enterprise…yet. The point being, I have a real job, and for that job I sometimes need to travel.

Now is one of those times.

I’ll be heading up to DC, my hometown. So it will be like John Denver’s “Country Roads,” but in reverse and also less twangy.

Fear not, I do plan to continue to write and post, but my incisive commentary may become slightly less regular for the next 10 or so days.

I’ll say some pithy shit on twitter, though, so check out the haps there. And keep coming back, because this is truly a fantastic blog and you’d be missing out if you didn’t stop by often. Even if you don’t see any new content, click around on everything just to make sure.

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Office Space and Cocktail Parties

Spotify! Blamm-oh!

The front desk at Spotify. Their office is “cool”

This picture was sent to me by a very connected friend – I’m kind of connected, and kind of a big deal – who went to a very exclusive cocktail party at Spotify’s office in New York City. I’m assuming you’ve heard of Spotify. They are kind of a big deal.

Anyway, this got me to thinking: We need more cocktail parties.

That’s all. End of post. I just wanted to show off my Spotify front desk photo.


Filed under Pointless musings

Feelgood chillzone

We’re getting fancier all the time over here, so now it is time to “link” a “music video” from an internet website called Youtube.

Because yes. Its like that.

So here is the unofficial theme song of Grandin Republic, “Down in the Valley” by The Head and the Heart.


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