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St. Elmo’s Fire, Rob Lowe, and Job Opportunities

I just finished reading “Stories I Only Tell My Friends“, Rob Lowe’s biography, which then led me to watch “St. Elmo’s Fire” tonight. During the movie,  I remembered that my first post on this blog talked about having my own space and I could make my own peanut butter and jelly sandwich if I wanted. I did not realize it until tonight, but I got that from “St. Elmo’s Fire” when the character played by Mare Winningham spoke of the freedom of having her own apartment.

I remember watching that movie in 1986 when I was in college and the world was wide open in front of me with friends and my own place to live. Then, I watched it again in 1991, during the last recession, and I remember crying when the Demi Moore character, Jules, was sobbing, saying how tired she was at 22. I was 26 and felt that exact same way. I was waiting tables and could not get a full time job in my chosen career path. I was working so hard just to keep going on the treadmill.

Reading Rob’s book (he is a year older than I) led me on a trip down memory lane through the crazy 80’s and all the excess and serious fun I had. Then the sobering 90’s came, and with it, the character building of working for two PR agencies for $5 an hour to get experience. Then my big break in 1993, when I got a full time job at a PR agency  planning and promoting a big event.

The excitement of using what I learned in college, learning how to work on a Mac, meeting new people and helping on the San Jose Arena opening took me away from those moments, where, like Jules, I could not see around the next corner.

I bring this back to present day, as we sit in another recession. (I don’t care what they say about GDP growth, people around me are desperate for meaningful work). As I search for my next opportunity, I have been given a chance to help others on this island. I am going to implement a technology conference in Kona on April 26, 2012. I wrote a grant to the Economic Development Department in March, which was approved in June and will flow through the Friends of the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii  Authority (NEHLA). This will allow me to work with a group of very enthusiastic and well connected folks to implement the TECHCONKona conference, which will bring hope, job skills, connections and more to the residents of the Big Island.

Seeing the movie tonight reminded me of how frustrating it was to have a degree and still not be able to find a job. I wish I had had someone working behind the scenes to give me a leg up.  The tech event will provide education and a chance to bring together people who can make things happen here.  I want to find additional funds to provide hands on computer training the day after the conference in WordPress, blogging, Facebook, and even Microsoft Outlook! We will have consultants talk about “Dual Use Technology” and other computer/technology opportunities which can directly help people.

St. Elmo’s Fire was just a myth, but the sailors thought they needed the story to keep them going when things got tough”, Rob Lowe, as Billy, explains. Well, maybe I need a little bit of the story, as do a lot of us who are on this ship. Perhaps, on February 17th, when the conference is over, I will invite my volunteers and trainers to join me up at the fire pits at Sam Choy’s, knowing that the spark of opportunity helped my fellow residents and I put on a damn good show.

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6 Responses to St. Elmo’s Fire, Rob Lowe, and Job Opportunities

  1. Jim Walberg October 2, 2011 at 8:52 am #

    What a thoughtful posting, Julie. I promise you that each of us have our stories of peaks and valleys. And, since we are still here it means there is “work/play” to be done each day. This is the greatest time of your life for family, friends and professionally. Enjoy every moment! Until next time!

    • admin October 2, 2011 at 9:26 am #

      Thanks Jim! If we did not have the valleys, we would not appreciate the peaks, right? 😉 Thanks for reading, Jim..I always appreciate the time you take to send a positive vibe my way!

  2. Katie Minkus, R(B) October 2, 2011 at 10:21 am #

    Aloha Julie… great blog post!! St. Elmo’s fire is one of the all-time best movies of my world, too… The scene where Demi Moore says, “there’s a clock over your head” still cracks me up!

    Have you ever read The Valley of the Dolls? I recommend you pick it up and read it again if you already have – there’s some great inspiration in that old classic… “It all started the day she looked around her and said, ‘this is not enough!'”

    Looking forward to the tech conference, thrilled you’ve made the Big Island home!! Really glad you’re in my life!! Warm aloha, Katie

    • admin October 2, 2011 at 1:02 pm #

      Have not read Valley of the Dolls..I am looking for my next Kindle read! Thanks Katie for your comment and the encouragement! Love ya!

  3. Brian Mizell October 26, 2011 at 2:44 pm #

    I too remmember watching St. Elmo’s Fire like it was yesterday. At the time, I watched it just to make someone else happy (I knew she wanted to spend the evening with Rob Lowe) Little did I relaize that the movie would have such a powerfull message. I really enjoyed your post and look forward to reading more.

    • admin October 26, 2011 at 3:47 pm #

      How cool is that? Thanks, Brian! 1986 I think it was…many years ago and many memories later..thanks for finding me!

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