I’m in marketing and spend a fair amount of time contemplating the way consumers use a medium such as the Internet. Until today, I never really thought much about my own habits—past and present. I was just thinking about some of the things that I do online to occupy my mind, besides reading blogs and message boards. Some people read about politics or fashion. Or they read about their hobbies. Or catch up on the day’s news. I live vicariously. At least I used to.
• There was I time when I would pour over the Top 20 and 25 from Travel Zoo and Sherman’s Travel and all the deals from Caribbean Jim at Cheap Caribbean. I’ve been known to plan out (but not order, obviously) entire vacations over my lunch hour. I’m a dreamer. I can’t help it. Worth noting, I only dream about tropical beach vacations. I’ve only been on two. Couples Ochos Rios and Sun Village, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic. *sigh* Heaven. Once, when I was on a real mission to book a vacation, I missed out on a great deal to Punta Cana because I failed to book it in time due to my fear of flying. Despite my coconut-island-get-away obsession, I need little blue pills to get on planes. Sometimes I need little blue pills just to buy the frickin’ tickets.
• I use to scour job boards and newspaper employment classifieds. I’ve been employed by the same company for a decade, yet I love to look and see what’s out there—especially in cities like New York. When I was single this was much more intense. I actually had a job that I “knew” I was going to get in NYC (I didn’t even get a lousy phone call) and was searching online for apartments in Tribeca. Heh.
• Much like hunting for jobs, I also like to look at real estate listings and even go to neighborhood open houses. I love to see other houses. I mostly dream in my own price-range (really!). I’m not looking for luxury. A closet bigger than a refrigerator would be nice, however. For awhile I had the lucky job of writing about multi-million dollar homes for a magazine. Talk about a fun place to hang out for the day! As the writer, I volunteered myself to also be the photographer’s assistant. Sometimes when you see a gorgeous home in a magazine spread, there is a writer hiding underneath the bed pulling the plug on a light at the photographer’s count of three. I’ve been under beds, behind tables, in Christmas trees and pressed obscenely close against the back of the photographer holding some kind of cardboard thing-y over his head while he snapped photos. Mostly, I just hung out and absorbed the lifestyle around me.
I think that this is how my dad must have felt when he poured over the pages of Auto Locator looking at cars that he had no intention of buying. I always wondered why he did that. Now I know.
Since having The Baby, I’m on The Nest or a parenting blog more than Trip Advisor. In fact, most of my Travel Zoo emails go unopened. I guess I can’t see myself lounging by the pool as easily as I once did or moving to another city. I love my neighborhood. It’s perfect for a family. And jobs? I don’t want to spend time thinking about working. Now, I daydream about staying home.
It’s funny how things change.