Tag Archives: Future

Cleaning the ‘KonMari’ Way

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Last week felt like the longest week ever here in Massachusetts.  There was the snowstorm on Sunday then came the frigid cold on Monday.  The cold got to be too much that I get sick yet AGAIN, causing me to avoid everyone like the plague (including my own laptop).  With that, its been quiet here in MakeSandcastlesNotWar being that I spent some time resting rather than cranking out more ridiculously awesome blog pieces.

To be honest, it wasn’t all bad being cooped up inside the house.  Spending more time indoors just meant searching for more great content on Netflix.  There was one popular TV series that actually got me moving and thinking differently about cleaning up.  This is Tidying Up with Marie Kondo.

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Tidying Up with Marie Kondo stars Marie Kondo, world-renowned organizing consultant and author who helps clients in the realm of tidying up.  Each episode features Marie helping out different types of audiences clean up their apartment or home.  Some were expecting a baby on the way while others wanted make their home feel more sophisticated for their guests.  These clients learn how to apply the KonMari Method when tidying up.  The KonMari Method involves gathering together all of your belongings (based on certain categories) and keeping only items that ‘spark joy’ in your life.  This way of cleaning/organizing shifts the focus from throwing items away to thing you truly want to hold onto for the future.

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Watching Tidying Up with Marie Kondo influenced me to conduct some cleaning and organizing around my bedroom/office and bathroom.  I collected so many things these past few years, what with the amount of traveling I do in Boston and Salem almost every week, that I decided to clean out the clutter and only keep items that still ‘spark joy’.



First off I started was my closet, I took out all of the clothing and organized them based on different categories.  My blue jeans and khaki pants are shelved on top as well as my winter clothes.  Near the left corner are where I stored my hats.  The right corner is where put my bicycle helmet.


The middle section is where I hung up the shirts, a few pants, suits, and winter coats.  Less clothing meant more space, as well as easy access to any item I need for the day.  In this case, less IS more because the shirts look a lot nicer than before.


On the bottom are my shoes neatly placed on this light shoe rack.  Boots, shoes, slippers, and even my sandals are all snug within its place.  There is no scrambling for finding the right pair of shoes because every pair is right there.  No scrambling means no frustration, which only means more piece of mind.


Next we move onto the drawers.  I folded up the socks (through KonMari Method, of course!) neatly around the space.  Every pair can be seen all around the border for every kind of occasion.  No more fumbling for the right pair on a special day!


Not only did I tidy up the sock/underwear drawer, but I also worked on the shirts as well.  The KonMari Method involves folding in thirds so that the shirts make up as less space as possible.  Better yet, it gives me a better idea of what shirt to wear for the day.  Two amazing benefits through just one small activity.


This even goes for long-sleeve shirts as well.  All of my short/long sleeve shirts, neatly stacked around yet another drawer.


Last drawer shows yet more shirts as well as some pajama pants.  Through the KonMari Method, I rolled up the pants instead of folding to make them look smaller than they are.  Rolling the pants helps to create more space for your clothing.  Really its all about working with the space you have in front of you.





After cleaning up most of my room, I moved onto the bathroom.  I looked through my cabinets to throw away items that didn’t ‘spark joy’ (they were pretty much expired anyways!).  Next step was to organize the last remaining items.  The shaving products went together just like the medicine and so on.  There has been much more space in the bathroom cabinets, making everything that much easier to find.



One last thing I cleaned out was my business card collection.  I have collected hundreds of business cards throughout the years.  Ever since starting college, I received a wide range of business cards from different people in various industry.  From PRSSA to the cannabis industry, these cards come from all over the country.  Cleaning out my business cards was truly a rewarding and positive experience because I looked back on who I enjoyed connecting with.  These connections could further my career in the near future if I use them right.

Cleaning the Marie Kondo way was a truly amazing and philosophical experience.  It taught me something about value and appreciation in this world.  I haven’t been feeling much appreciation in life, so I started cleaning up in my room and bathroom.  Sure enough, it actually helped out in a major way.

Conducting this modern self-help craze made me realize… in order to receive appreciation in life, you have to start with appreciating yourself first.  It isn’t something you get right away.  Appreciating yourself is the first step in truly getting what you want out of life.  Cleaning up and organizing your possessions help clean up not only the physical clutter, but the mental clutter within your mind  That’s the best type of self-help you could ever get.

With that, Marie Kondo’s method helped me clear out the clutter – both in my room and in my mind.


Phish at Phenway

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Besides being the home field for the Boston Red Sox, Fenway Park also hosts many musicians coming into the city.  Zac Brown, Pearl Jam, Billie Joel, and even Jimmy Buffet are a few of many notorious bands that rocked Fenway Park.  It just goes to show that they sing more than just ‘Sweet Caroline’ in Kenmore Square (#InsideBostonJoke).

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Image result for Fenway park Jimmy Buffett

Whether it be a music act or another baseball game, one thing’s for certain – Fenway Park makes for one of the most entertaining venues here in Boston.  Fenway Park branches out in its entertaining avenues by hosting more than just sports games.  All types audience roam around Yawkey Way to grab their food, beers, and other accessories before the big game (or show!).  This summer, audiences will be grooving to the infamous VT jam band known as… Phish.

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Image result for Phish at Fenway

Image result for Phish at Fenway

That’s right folks – Phish is returning to Fenway Park.  Phish will be returning with some all new jams in Boston for their Summer 2019 tour.  It’ll be a true Boston highlight known as ‘Phish at Phenway’ (#PhishPhanPun).  You can see Phish at Fenway Park on July 5th and 6th.  Tickets go out starting February 1st.

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Phish hails from the quaint town of Burlington, Vermont (a.k.a. my old college stomping ground!).  Trey Anastasio, Mike Gordon, Jon Fishman, and Page McConnell formed the band back in the 1980s, making fantastic music as a jam band.  They attract many fans, known as ‘Phish Phans’, all across the nation.  Coincidentally, Phish Phans are similar to the ‘Dead Heads’ that followed the Grateful Dead.  They still play many sold-out shows, filling every seat around the stage.

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Some of their earlier albums include Junta, Lawn Boy, A Picture of Nectar, Rift, Hoist, Billy Breathes, The Story of the Ghost, and even Farmhouse.  Not only do they have lots of studio albums (15 to be exact), but they have a TREMENDOUS number of live albums from their past shows.  Phish Phans can choose from a variety of shows they played over the past 30 decades or so.  It’s those live albums that make Phish even better.

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Image result for phish

I’m honestly so pumped that Phish is playing in Boston this summer!  Phish was one of my favorite bands in college and I have been looking to see them live at some point in the future.  Their music gets really creative throughout each track, with some spanning more than ten minutes.  So amazing that Phish his hitting up one of the most iconic spots of Boston.

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Be sure to grab your tickets to see Phish at Phenway this summer!

Gentrified Boston Shuts Down Restaurants

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Image result for l'espalier Boston

Within the past week, there has been a slew of restaurants closing around the Boston area.  L’Espalier, the famous French cuisine restaurant in the Back Bay, was the first of many that have or will be closing down.  The restaurant first opened in 1978, gaining widespread recognition as a high-end restaurant in the Boston area.  Over forty years later and L’Espalier served its last meal in the Back Bay.

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Image result for Durgin-Park

The next famous landmark that would be closing soon is Durgin-Park.  Durgin-Park was a historic restaurant in Faneuil Hall, serving classic New England food.  It has been around Boston for almost two hundred years (even during the Civil War!).  A lack of customers as well as not being able to keep up with the modern times were some of many problems the restaurant faced over the years.  Nevertheless, Durgin-Park will be closing its doors on January 12th.

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But its not just the city of Boston that is dealing with restaurant shutdowns.  Santoro’s Sub-Villa, a famous sub shop on route 1 of Saugus, will be serving their last subs after opening for more than 60 years.  It’s shocking to see this wave of restaurant closings making ways into the Greater Boston area.

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Image result for Gentrification Boston

At this point, you have to wonder what has been the cause for this string of downfalls to happen.  For one thing, gentrification has certainly played its part by establishing businesses catered to a specific audience.  More changes within the demographic means sweeping changes among its surrounding areas.  Restaurants like Durgin-Park aren’t faring well with the new wave of tourists visiting Boston.

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Another interesting piece to this puzzle is the recent hike of the state’s minimum wage to $12/hr.  With the minimum wage increase, businesses are scrambling to rethink their financial strategies.  They must make ends meet all while paying their employees even more.  All of this is depending on the flow of business that happens each day.

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Durgin-Park, Santoro’s Sub-Villa, and L’Espalier are a few of many restaurants that are shutting their doors this year.  This news still comes as quite a shock to many people, being that they have been landmark destinations in the area.  Gentrification and the recent minimum wage increase are a few factors that play into these downfalls.  Who knows what other establishments will announce their closing date as well.

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One thing is for certain – gentrification is shutting down businesses as well as historic neighborhoods.


MA Cannabis Christmas Philosophy

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Christmas is in just FOUR days and already we have been receiving some amazing gifts.  Kingdom Hearts III releases on January, Snoop Doggy Dogg released his own cookbook, and we have all the soapy Holiday Hallmark movies playing for weeks on end.  But the biggest present of them all, the one that we have been waiting practically YEARS for, finally came this year – recreational cannabis shops opening in Massachusetts.  You can definitely say that Santa had Massachusetts on the ‘Nice’ list.

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Our gift of legal recreational shops has been raking in MILLIONS within weeks.  Cultivate and NETA went from making over half a million in one day to generating more than $7 million in under ONE month.  And that increase in finance, which piles higher as the days go on, will funnel towards benefiting the community even further.  It’s the gift that just keeps on giving.

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But when you really put things into perspective, this landmark event will set in stone for more PR miracles to come.  Better yet, those PR miracles will become deeper than ever over time.  The younger audiences have been working hard to keep the cannabis community alive.  They are simply going off of what past cannabis consumers have been creating for decades.  And not only have they surpassed that goal of keeping the community alive, but now that community is thriving more than ever.  It’s that kind of youth rejuvenation, that revolutionary shift in the central culture as a whole, that helps to spread the community EVERYWHERE across the nation.

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First comes the recreational dispensaries opening up within the state.  Before you know it, cannabis will be utilized in types of ways you can’t even imagine.  More yoga instructors will allow students to puff on a pipe during their sessions.  Cannabis cafes will allow patrons to consume joints with their friends and family.  There are so many scenarios you could draw up inside your mind.  The best part about all of this is that we could FINALLY make these dreams come to life.

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There’s one phrase that must be said again – one industry’s PR miracle is also another industry’s PR nightmare.  Recreational cannabis’s growing PR buzz is causing a major meltdown for the medical community.  There’s this tidal wave of change sweeping through the state, with many members scrambling for salvation.

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And then you ask yourselves those difficult questions – will the medical community be able to fight off against this growing competition?  Do they have some secret weapon to keep their existing audience glued into their community?  If there were something created in the works, how long could it possibly work for?

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It does get harder as time goes on because you see these changes happening before your very eyes.  And these changes are sweeping quicker than ever.  Recreational cannabis is here to stay in Massachusetts and it will grow faster than ever in the near future.

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When you have no concrete answers to the questions above, you just let nature takes its course.  Nature will let things happen as is own and we can only adapt based on our immediate reactions.

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All we are left to do know is pay close attention to our environmental surroundings next year.  The next strategic moves you make in this industry will determine what will happen to you and your business in the future.

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Now is the time to establish what kind of cannabis business you truly are in this industry.  The question is, will your business be floating higher than ever or will it all just go up in smoke?

MA Recreational Shops – One Month Later

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Image result for MA Recreational Sales

As of right now, it has been exactly ONE month since recreational cannabis shops opened in Massachusetts.  Thousands upon thousands of customers have been lining up around the doors in the two shops.  Various cannabis products are being sold like hot cakes.  With another shop opening in Salem, the competition just got even bigger.  One thing is for certain – so much change has happened ever since the shops opened in Leicester and Northampton back on November 20th.

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Its at this stage that we now start discussing the burning question that has been on lots of people’s mind.  The question is this – just how much sales have been generated in just one month here in Massachusetts?

On this day, one month after Cultivate and NETA officially went recreational, the dispensaries made a combined total of over $7 million.

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Over $7 million in sales, generated in just ONE month within the state of Massachusetts, from two dispensaries alone.  Remember that NONE of these dispensaries are close to the city of Boston.  They are mere miles away from Boston, yet they have already been off to a great start.   You can certainly say that Christmas came early for Massachusetts this year.

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That latest figure is a REAL number.  Just like over $2.2 million in one week is a real number as well.  If this keeps up, Massachusetts will be generating over $80 million in sales (which will climb to over HUNDREDS of millions once the dispensaries hit Boston!).

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Image result for Shadow over landscape

One month later and the PR miracle still reigns on for the recreational industry.  However, one industry’s PR miracle is also another industry’s PR nightmare.  With the recreational industry generating lots of buzz, the medical community is finding itself in a state of panic.  Audiences of the medical industry are scrambling, anxious of the sweeping changes that are quickly happening within Massachusetts.  As more shops become established in various neighborhoods, the wind is blowing towards recreational cannabis.

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At this point, you have to wonder – what does all this mean for the medical cannabis industry?  What hidden tactics can be utilized to salvage itself from going completely under?  Would there be any desire for a so-called ‘medical card’ to get access to cannabis in the next five years? Or better yet, how about ten years?

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All that can be said is this – 2019 is looking to be an EXTREMELY interesting year for the cannabis industry.  Lots of changes have been taking place around Massachusetts and many are already left scrambling.

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Recreational cannabis is here, providing a whole new way of doing business within the 4/20 community.  Not only is this industry crossing over with other businesses, but its already influencing other subcultures as well (LGBTQ, feminism, just to name a few).

Brace yourselves, folks – we are starting to dig out the gold that we have lying around us here in Massachusetts.