July 2020: Awakening

never waste a good crisis

And then suddenly, everyone woke up. Well, not everyone. And not fully awake. But no one can deny that the past month has seen a remarkable wave of increased awareness in America about the perpetual problem of racism, and how society cannot be healthy when we insist on viewing ourselves as individuals whose actions and worldview don’t affect anyone rather than part of a system where everything is connected. To me, waking up is the point. It’s the process. As in, THE process. The purpose of life. To be continually evolving, learning, growing, connecting. It’s difficult because there is no finish […]

An American Intervention

whitney plantation

Photo: The author inside a human cage at The Whitney Plantation, the only American plantation restored to honor the memory and plight of enslaved African people. Welcome to the week of waking up. I am watching the stream of Official Statements from various organizations from the back of the room, leaning against the wall with my arms crossed, side of my mouth turned up and brow furrowed. This week of black squares on social media has been what the rainbow logo is to Pride week: easy, convenient, trendy. Meaningless unless followed by tangible, measurable action. Businesses that declare support for […]

My Career Story: Ciara Pressler, Pregame Editor

PDBA Awards 2019

Name: Ciara Pressler Current Job: Founder & Head of Content at Pregame Current Place: Portland, OR  Hometown: The setting of Anchorman Age: 41 What I wanted to be when I grew up: Jem from Jem & The Holograms College degree: BS in Communication and Minor in Music from Seattle Pacific University What do you love about what you do? I love helping people see themselves as bigger and more momentous and more capable than they were brave enough to think of before. What is the biggest challenge? All of my biggest challenges are internal. How I think about myself and my own possibilities. Also, support! […]

June 2020: Career Stories

map

Watching President Obama’s virtual commencement addresses in May, I was inspired to do something to support this year’s grads. If I could give them one gift, what would it be? The answer: self confidence. Not in the swagger sense (although I wish them some of that too). I’d wish them that centered, calm state that they’ve got this, that things will work out fine, that it’s all good, and that a sense of “it’s all just a game” can relieve the anxiety of feeling like you have to have it all perfectly planned out from the kickoff. The best way […]

Making Concessions: Covid While 40 Weeks Pregnant

toilet paper

I am rarely surprised or frightened by the world around me. When COVID-19 first came out and I kept hearing people worry about it, I kept becoming annoyed by it all and saying, “Yeah yeah yeah. Relax people. Why aren’t we worried about the common flu that kills between 12,000 and 61,000 people every year just in the US? Or heart disease, which kills 650,000 people in the US every year? Or car accidents that kill 35,000 people every year in the US?” I kept saying, “this is a media-driven panic, goddamnit! Turn off your TV!” I heard a very […]

Business As Unusual

empty office

It’s been really interesting to watch how people are handling their brands during this particular time. I’ve watched some people act like nothing is happening at all and keep running ads for their latest freebie or checklist with no mention of what’s going on in the world. I’ve also seen some people create groups and communities on the fly and set them up on the Book Of Faces and other platforms. I’ve also watched a bunch of people fire up their phones and shoot videos telling us all what they’re going through during this time and the “three things to […]

April 2020: The Coronavirus Interlude

empty street

And then suddenly, everything changed. We interrupt our regularly scheduled magazine issue to start unpacking the only topic that matters right now. On April 1, 2020, we find ourselves in the middle of a global pandemic. Approximately two weeks from its peak in America. But this is only the beginning. We will be changed, permanently, by this uniquely global event. While it’s difficult to editorialize about the coronavirus as it happens, lacking any clarify of hindsight, we decided to use writing as a sort of therapy to explore what this means now, and what it could mean. We are in […]

March 2020: Arts & Culture

Stories Being Told To The Sky, 48in x 48in, oil on canvas

I have a confession to make. I only read nonfiction. Well, not entirely. I read a fiction book on vacation last month (thanks, Kevin Kwan!), and before that (cough), on vacation two years ago (thanks, Haruki Murakami!). As your resident goal-getter, nonfiction just seems so much more… important. Who has time for frivolity when there are things to learn, goals to accomplish! But since the smartest people I know spend time not just with nonfiction but also with novels, I finally stopped to wonder if I was missing half the story. Ironically, the arts – yes, fiction – can be […]

Can You Learn to Be Lucky? Karla Starr Says Yes.

Karla Starr

How’s this for luck: leaving PDX Airport, I happened to select a shared Lyft at just the right moment and found myself on the ride with a smart, savvy, NYC-based journalist who would quickly become a good friend: Karla Starr. Karla’s first book, Can You Learn to Be Lucky?, was a smash success, named as one of the Top 10 books of the year by Fast Company and hailed by every nonfiction business-psychology author you’ve heard of as a must-read. In our conversations, I’m always impressed with her curiosity, thoughtfulness, and research-backed assertions. And, lucky us!, she’s coming to Pregame […]

February 2020: Legacy

ripple effect

We all have an urge to create. To put our stamp on the world. To leave a legacy. I learned this from Nick, a friend with whom I’d recently reunited. He had become a priest, serving as a hospital chaplain. Sitting in Madison Square Park, we caught up over coffee from the Mud Truck one spring afternoon. I was fascinated by the sheer amount of time he had spent with dying people; more than anyone else I knew at our age. I asked, “What’s the one biggest takeaway you have from being around people at the end of life?” He […]