About the Author:

With a career that has spanned advertising, production, technical services, and project management, Michael is able to articulate the wide range skills and professions that make the Internet work. This eclectic understanding and his desire to shine the light on those hiding behind techno babble has brought success to a wide range of projects.

Twitter @bissell

Linked In

Past Postings:

Using Dissent To Enhance Your Social Influence Online

Industry Profile - Author

Industry Profiles Full Time Employees - Professional Writer

Some Thoughts On Freelancing

Building Your Online Brand

Marissa Mayer and the Change in Yahoo's Remote Workforce

LinkedIn for Professional Writers

Fake Republican Twitter Accounts

"Did you mean?" -- Google's chiding nanny of search results

Branded Technology

Sharingspree.com -- Stealing more than GroupOn's Idea

The Internet Isn't Entertaining Enough

It's not your bank... It's Apple's and Amazon's

Violated by Madison Avenue

Google+ Scares Me

"We need to..." Internet Marketing Myths

Facebook's deal with the Devil

My cool new phone is a little too cool.

You are never alone

Promotion vs. Distribution... You'd think they'd know that one...

Publishing Industry Watch

Content for Social Media

Social Media Slot Machine

Anonymous vs Me

News from the Twitter Follow Campaign Trail

The art of Indiscriminate Twitter Following

The Cloudy Meaning of The Cloud

The Demand For The Loss of Creativity

Alien Technology and Government Conspiracies

Time for a New Reality

The Death of Email

Protecting Free Speech... Anonymously (and geekily)

Amazon Shouldn't Have Shut Down WikiLeaks

The Superpowers of the Hive Mind

Time for New Ideas

Comcast, Netflix and the Mystery of the Modem

The Great Technical Disconnect

New for the Sake of New

A Retail Store Built Like the Web

Disposable Personas

When did Google Start Policing the Internet?

Getting back to HTML basics, thanks to Apple

Inspecting my Navel Base

A shoebox vs. an online backup

Is Your "Resume" Website Recruiter-friendly?

iBooks -- Creative Epicenter or Gatekeeper?

The Failure of Success

The Economy is Going to Get Worse, but that's okay

Time lost on Twitter

Client Vendor Relationships

Twitter's back alleys and dark places

Social Media is NOT Advertising

Microsoft Courier

Form (designers) versus Function (geeks)

PDXBOOM -- The power of social media and the portland pipe bomb

China and Apple -- Different organizations, same management

The volume of screens


Google Adds Biking Directions to Maps


That magical little tablet

How your website can be in two places at once

Masterpieces created by sheer volume

Suing over lack of originality

A Primer on Internet Fame -- dancing babies, hamsters, numa numa, and more...

Checking my messages

Rules are made to be broken -- in a reasoned, systematic way

So many accounts, so few passwords

Who really uses Twitter? 60% of Twitter's traffic isn't on Twitter

The Web is a Jerry Rigged Kludge

Twitter: Asleep at the Mouse Wheel

Where regulation is good: Google Voice and Vonage

How Facebook is (unintentionally) forcing programmers to piss off users

The Twit Cleaner

Perfect Secretary's pitch for @Adbroad (and the Youtube API)

The Emotions of Text

The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam

Google Analytics, the cloud and missing numbers #fail

Helen Klein Ross & Michael Bissell Interview at Adweek's Social Media Strategies Conference

The Internet is the New 60's

Cougars from New Zealand (and I don't mean big cats)

Adding facts together, or why you can't charge your cell phone from wifi

Social Media and the Destruction of the World

Rabid Fans vs Passive Viewers -- The Coco vs Leno saga

How to tell someone to retweet (without using up your 140 characters)

You can't buy social media

A book unopened is but a block of paper

Building the LOST: The Final Season Sweepstakes

Holiday SPAM (or the lack thereof)

Archiving Twitter

Too Many Toolbars

Random Censorship with Google Adwords

Accessibility and Shopping Online

Twisted path to customer service

Flash: Shiny objects blinding your audience

Twollow and other gold rush scripts

GPS in a Laptop computer

Thinking outside the box... There was a box?

Twitter was designed for Text Messaging

It's not the corporations, damnit

Entrepreneur or Dreamer?

Adweek Social Media Twitter for Brands Presentation

Socializing is more than Social Media

Generational Marketing is a Myth (or Who's your Daddy?)

Social Media is Just the Way We Use the Internet

Twitter Followers Don't Matter (ask the porn sites)

The Internet is Gooder than Books

Sometimes you don't want your campaign to go viral

Best Twitter Branding Campaign

Like flies to crap, Spammy Twitter Followers don't really go away

iPhone SMS Security Hole

How Flipmytweet works

Cell Phones as Microscopes

Digg is not the Hijacker -- You Are

Steve Ballmer -- the walking dead?

Twitter as an open mic poetry reading

Automatic Social [un]Awareness

New York, New York

First splash for United Against Malaria

New Media/Old Media and the CLIO Awards

Interview at SXSW: Mad Men Twitter And Tracking

We've got an App for that -- it's called the Web

Understanding Google To Get Your Resume Noticed

Made it to SXSW in Austin

The trouble with Wordpress and other templates

Wayward Words with Baggage

Speaking at SXSW March 17th

The fleeting Memory of the Internet

It's okay to say 'I don't know'

Good Morning America, now Go Fight Traffic

More surreality in Portland

Nike Takes Over Conquent

Facebook owns this title

Excuses, excuses

A little on Social Media

Feeding on Content

Attack of the Bots

Irish Music in Oregon City

Landing on an Aircraft Carrier

Got Curry? And some bizarre art?

Web 1.0

Random Music and Random Life in Portland

To the dump, to the dump, to the dump dump dump

Flight Simulator

Cold night, hot fire, happy cat

Net Neutrality

Walking to work in the snow

A window into Moreland of the Past

Getting clever with data feeds

Big and Little Beirut

The Other Credit Crisis

The Broadband Inauguration

T-Mobile owns Magenta and Other Patent Stories

The Risk-takers, Doers and Makers of Things

The noise of 20,000+ Twitter Followers

Reflections on my DC Trip

Born Again American

30,000 feet, 500 MPH Suburban Strip Mall

Cellphones, toilets and the Inauguration

The wall of pissing

National Treasure/National Archives

My trip to DC so far

Everyone is insane

Getting ready for DC

The End of Days (of song): Microsoft Songsmith Example

The Very Model of a Modern Major General

Browser Bigotry

The Death of your Soul: Microsoft Songsmith

Creative Development or Developing Creatively?

Race to Witch Mountain

The Myth of Wikipedia (or the Wiki-1400)

Online/Offline Sales -- is it really that bad?

Is PayPal Tacky?

Old School Web Design Still Works

Domain Squatting

Christmas Fire

Green Chri$tma$

QA 101

Portland Snow

Get some return on that web traffic

I think they have a backup...

I'd love to have that problem

The [un]importance of statistics

Don't be a tool of viral marketing

CAT Scan!

Follow up to the shoulder injury

Emails, discussions, blogs, wiki and web content

Ironic Injury

On the Santa Monica Pier

You Designed for Print First

You let someone else register your domain name

You figured .biz, .info, .us would work fine

What's after the Integrated Circuit?

Intelligent life is out there (but it's bugger all down here on earth)

Subject Matter Experts Talking Other Subject Matter

The Totalitarian Regime of Apple

Oversimplifying how people work


Creative Services for the New World

Reverse Anthropomorphism

The End of Time

Oil prices and birdsong

Watching Starship Troopers AGAIN!

Better Living Through Twitter

Lessons Learned From Apple

It's the Brand, Baby

Business Architecture vs. Web Construction

On Truth

You can't build life

Accidentally Drunk in Portland

Al Gore the Winner

Intelligent life is out there (but its bugger all down here on earth)

Aussie Rules Football

Trip to Nostalgia Land

I am such an idiot

Long day of travel

Miami -- as far from Portland as you can go in the US

Inverse Peter Principle

Random Knowledge

I'm fascinated with modern plumbing

Leaving Seattle (or why you should keep your ticket close)

On the Rails

The Hive

RSS for this blog
Miami -- as far from Portland as you can go in the US
2007-01-20 12:30:00

I'm in Miami Beach, and it definitely counts as one of the more interesting trips I've found myself on. First off, the town itself (once you get to South Beach, not Miami proper) is opulant, expensive, and filled with beautiful people. As I paid for my vodka mojito and found I was spending 14 bucks, with gratuity included, it suddenly felt very foreign, perhaps even European...

But let me back up a bit. I'm here on business, which makes it extra surreal. My client wanted to go to a trade show and invited me along, which is good because the room is something like 300 a night (and I'm here two nights). He paid, and it was his car from Orlando, so I drove.

The highway is boring as can be. There isn't much to see except mangroves and what look like sugar pines. Other than the stretches of swampy bits, it actually reminded me a lot of Eastern Oregon's scrubland, only without the mountains in the distance.

On the way into town we stopped at a muscle car shop, where they charged 10 bucks to let you puruse the lot. Quick, not very interesting, but I got a hat out of the deal (I hate baseball caps, especially with some corporate logo on it...). It was a poor, black neighborhood; but then I think I kind of expectd that in Miami.

But, then we crossed the water into South Beach where we're staying at the Catalina Hotel, which is just as the literature made it look, although a little run down. But Miami... wow... the women are almost universally busty, low cut, leggy and sexy. There aren't a lot of dumpy guys, either, which doesn't help me much. Not that I'd go there, but it's nice to be able to entertain fantasies about being able to snag pretty girls.

There's this long stretch of street where it's just one restaurant after another, and they all fill the sidewalks with tables. It's almost like a dream where you're walking through a place and it never ends. Block after block of tables of diners, all with pretty girls trying to entice you to eat at their place.

We stopped at one place which was very loud, making it hard to talk, but the music was great. As we sat down a street peformer did a great show with cards at the table (which got him a nice tip), while in the background, I swear, the guitarist was playing Pink Floyd in a flemenco style. Later it was Zorba the Greek (which ended up with him selling me a copy of his CD).

We tried to go to a club but were turned away because the guy I was with was in shorts. A dress code! My god, do you know how unlikely that is in the nicest of places in Portland? Well, after we had a beer elsewhere, I went back on my own (being the dapper guy that I am).

It was the most amazing place I've ever been. I wish I could remember the name, but it's probably in the land of Faerie anyhow. It starts with a room as deep as the building with 25' ceilings (at least) and probaly about 20' wide making it feel kind of tunel like but still spacious. The space was lit mainly by candlelight, and it was divided up somewhat by these huge, gauzy, curtains.

There were people dancing in the middle to a DJ who was in a perfect little alcove on the side. Across the "hall" and by the full size billiards table (and I mean full size) was another alcove with a good sized bar, the surface of which was marble, lit from below, so the efect was a glowing bar and drinks.

The crowd was a mix of young and old, couples and groups and stray singles (like myself), straight and gay, black, white, every shade in between. All well dressed and well behaved.

But that wasn't the end of the bar. As I headed out the back there was a huge, covered patio. There were couches, tables with low lamps, people eating and drinking and talking and some light making out in darkened corners. The staff was all dressed in white from head to tow and were quietly and efficiently scurrying around taking care of everyone to the beat of the DJ's music pumped out through a sound system that I never quite found.

Going deeper took me into the grassy garden where there were more couches with lamps and indoor furniture in the outdoor setting. A big hammock in the middle of the lawn was swaying gently and obviously occupied, but I didn't look too deeply to see by whom.

Then the poolside party. The pool was longer than an olympic pool, and surrounded by couches that looked the size of kingsized beds or larger, all filled with the same people as the rest of the place. Across the walkway from the lounging groups was a series of bungaloes, where people were sitting around tables, playing games, talking about who know what, and I saw more than one ice bucket with the neck of a champagne bottle poking through.

And it still went deeper. There was another bar in the back, some sort of bungalow with a covered area, and finally a gate to the beach where I wandered out to the low surf and looked at the skyline from the low tide line.

I think this as as far as you can get from Portland in so many ways...

Comment on this blog
Your name:

Your email (will not be displayed):



Enter the text above to help us filter spam: