Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Tuesdays for the Win

“Goodbye, Ruby Tuesday, Who could hang a name on you? When you change with every new day, Still I’m gonna miss you.”
-From The Rolling Stones’ “Ruby Tuesday”

I love Tuesdays; always have, always will. But until starting my internship with Rolling Stone, I didn’t know the extent to which entertainment news utilizes, dare I say relies upon, Monday’s relief pitcher. Important things in every department of the magazine just seem to fall into place on Tuesdays. It’s the day when advertising reps seal back-cover deals, when layout tends to wind up the next issue’s cover, and when the online editors post the final articles detailing the sex-and-drugs slugfest better known as Bonnaroo. Take out Tuesdays, and you have no sales confirmations, awkwardly late music festival recaps, and one less soft rock favorite to help give The Rolling Stones the breadth that truly makes them “The Greatest Rock and Roll Band in the World.”*

For us interns, however, all this frenzy boils down to one thing: confirmations. Editorial interns spend Tuesdays confirming facts and tax interns (yes, they have those, and no, I don’t know how they live with themselves) spend Tuesdays confirming, well, taxes. I’m lucky enough to spend Tuesdays confirming contact information and calling to get RSVPs that, while originally finalized months ago, were accidentally deleted by someone in upper management when they tried clicking on the dancing kitty in a popup ad. Calling clients, aka our advertisers, can be a frustrating process. No one wants to give out contact information, nor do they want to commit to being in a certain place at a certain time on a day when they could otherwise be golfing. This initial hesitance, though, usually dissolves once I utter those five magic words: “I’m calling from Rolling Stone.” Conversations usually unravel something like this:


“Hi, my name’s David Tao, and I’m calling for Mr. Peterson to….”

“Mr. Peterson is out today. I’m his secretary. If you’d like to leave a message I can send you to his voicemail.”**

“I’m calling from Rolling Stone.”

Rolling Stone?! I love Rolling Stone! Oh my God, I just thought today was my lucky day. Okay, okay, okay, this is soooo coooool. Like, oh God, how did you get a job there?”

“Uhm, actually I’m an intern. I just needed to find out if Mr. Peterson was coming to our luncheon tomorrow at 12pm and if….”

“Wait! Do you know John Mayer? I bet you know John Mayer! I looooove John Mayer. You know that one song he sings? It totally makes my heart MMM-EEE-LLL-TTT!”

“I’m afraid I’ve never met Mr. Mayer. Look, is Mr. Peterson coming tomorrow or not?”

“Oh, yes, he’s really looking forward to it. Wait, are you John Mayer?!”


“Continuum” freaks aside, Tuesdays are also when we get our most important assignments. For example, while compiling the entire magazine’s ad sales for the past two years seems a bit tedious, it’s also a vital process that gives me unparalleled knowledge regarding the print business. Sure, that’s just me convincing myself that sitting in the library with a calculator and pen for two hours isn’t the worst task of all time, but I’m a sucker for a good self-directed Tom Sawyer stretch.***

My favorite part of Tuesdays, even ahead of hearing another intern talk about the true genius of Soulja Boy Tell 'em, has to be the radio. In various parts of the Rolling Stone office, including the library, waiting areas, and conference rooms, cleverly hidden speakers emit a steady stream of commercial-free hits. I don’t know why, but I only notice the music on Tuesdays. Maybe it’s because I’m usually working alone, or maybe someone different puts the play list together on Tuesday. Whatever the case, the free tunes are very agreeable, and I would be lying if I said I could complain about the track selection. My only suggestion would be including more of Gunther and the Sunshine Girls (shown with me above), but somehow I think “Ding-Dong Song” might not be appropriate for the office.

Well, folks, that’s all for me until August. I just finished packing for a family trip to Switzerland, so hopefully I’ll have some neat-o pictures upon my return to spice things up a bit. A European blockmate of mine (though I won’t name names, let’s just say he has an acute fear of Gypsies) told me that Switzerland is the most boring country in the entirety of Europe. As someone who’s never been across the pond, I’m not complaining about a trip completely on my mom’s tab.


*Quick history note: during an American tour in 1969, manager Sam Cutler introduced “The Rolling Stones” with this line, a title which has stuck to the present day. Whether you believe the statement or not, I think we can all agree Keith Richards’ inability to die is truly extraordinary.
**In the internship business, one quickly learns that “send you to his voicemail” is code for “make sure we never, under any circumstances, get back to you.”
***You know that scene where Tom convinces everyone that whitewashing a fence is sooo fun? Yeah….