Dear Members, Friends, and Family,
We’ve been a very good nonprofit coalition this year. Well, okay, we’ve occasionally been pretty damn naughty. But the targets of our ire richly deserve it! We’re sure you’ll agree upon reviewing our Timelines of Scandal and Strife. News alert: Silicon Valley is still just as irresponsible when it comes to piracy as they always have been.
Anyway, since we’ve been naughty selectively, we told Santa we deserve a special present this year. There’s one thing we really want, but despite Mariah Carey’s song, it’s not a romantic partner – blech! It’s a permanent solution to online piracy. We’re hopeful Santa will grant the request.
While we wait in anticipation, we thought we’d spread the holiday spirit by sharing staff updates. In case that won’t do the trick, we’re also deploying a fail-safe measure …
When not glued to 24-hour news, Executive Vice President of External Affairs Brett Williams binged on Bad Sisters, The Handmaid’s Tale, The White Lotus, Severance and more – never leaving his home. In a daring moment, he joined our team to watch Top Gun: Maverick in a theatre! (For those of us who know Brett, that is sarcasm, as Brett rarely stays home. When he’s not working, he can always be found on a plane to some exotic destination.)
But back to Top Gun: Why, Brett wondered, aren’t there more great summer movies, like in the ‘80s? Instead, Brett is left with more serious fare like Ken Burns’ docuseries The U.S. and the Holocaust, using Rachel Maddow’s podcast, Ultra, as a chaser.
This year, Brett, Ruth, and JC traveled to D.C. four times, introducing creatives to policymakers on the Hill. In between trips, he also made it back to Maine for his yearly trip, his pugs favorite home away from home, where they indulge in their favorite hobby, napping, and Brett in his – baking.
Office Manager Jeannie Lalau celebrated one year at CreativeFuture, where she coordinated a move, laid down kitchen laws, and exerted herself to contain our individualized chaos. We don’t know how Jeannie survives, but we wouldn’t survive without her!
While missing Hawaii, Jeannie appreciates LA’s creative opportunities for her family. Her husband and youngest daughter create amazing illustrations. Her oldest daughter works as a choreographer and dance artist. Her second daughter is a hairstylist and make-up artist. Finally, her son remixes music, taking after his father, who used to work as a DJ and radio host. Jeannie says her daughter’s dance skills came from her – we demand proof in the new year.
Unable to bear LA’s relentlessly temperate weather, Community Outreach Consultant Adam Krentzman fled for Iceland’s brooding cold. After setting up in Reykjavík, Adam visited Hvalfjarðarsveit and Akraneskaupstaður (say that five times fast). He spent most of his time, however, in the Icelandic equivalent of the Soho House. It was a typical caper for our “agent” of mystery.
Somewhere on his global travels, Adam met this soulful-eyed dog, whose identity remains unexplained.
According to Communications Director Davis Read, not much changed this year. We beg to differ. Alarmingly, Davis has grown even taller. It’s a good thing we moved to an office with twelve-and-one-half-foot ceilings. (The Communications team measured after taking bets.) One day, Davis may surpass that limit, but for now, he enjoys some clearance.
The high point of Davis’ year was a trip to Barcelona. Like Gulliver in Lilliput, he stepped carefully between houses in the Gothic Quarter, stooped to peer inside windows of the Basílica de la Sagrada Familia, and quaffed pitchers of sangría. Davis politely declined to reveal how many wheelbarrows of paella he consumed. Suffice it to say that he catapulted local restaurants out of their post-pandemic slump, which made up for frightening the Catalan children with his monstrous height.
A year after leaving academia, Senior Writer Bryan Alkemeyer settled into the new routine. In the mornings, he did calisthenics, drank thirty-two ounces of coffee, and played a videogame about escaping hell to prepare for a similar day at work. There, he galloped around like a knight on horseback, brandishing The Associated Press Stylebook and vowing to vanquish online piracy. In the evening, he cooked vegan fare before going to bed, swaddled in the susurration of a white-noise machine.
This summer, Bryan traveled to Oklahoma to visit his nieces, who are five and nine. After nearly drowning “Uncle Bubbles” (Bryan) in a swimming pool, they tried to poison him with homemade “sides,” foul concoctions of their own devising. With such incidents fresh in memory, Bryan was beyond thrilled to learn he will gain a third niece in 2023.
Creative Producer Nim Kaufman joined us in March, moving from Boulder, Colorado. He appreciates working with a small team of kind, caring people because his previous workplaces always had that one person. You know … that one hideous person. In 2023, we suspect Nim may realize that, at CreativeFuture, we are all that person.
Perhaps he already has, for he chose to shut himself up in a closet even though we have 12,000 square feet of free temporary office space. He swears he likes it in there a lot because he can work in peace! We think that reflects poorly on the rest of us …
When Nim isn’t sheltering in that closet, he works on independent projects at home. After collaborating remotely with musician friends for four years, they gathered in LA to record an album, which is being mastered by a talented engineer. In addition, Nim has finished ten minutes of animation for a pilot episode of a television show. Once it’s done, perhaps he will finally venture beyond his cloistered workspace, which would make us very happy.
Coordinator Connor Leak is pleased to report a full year without home invasions. After a previous incident, he moved from scenic but seedy Hollywood to Beverly Grove. His landlord, who lives upstairs, is prepared to keep the peace, for he builds guns to earn a living. Connor feels like he’s living under Fort Knox!
This year, Connor and his roommates have applied themselves where it will make the least difference – contesting parking tickets. So far, they have amassed a shocking $1500 in fines, and they won’t take them lying down! Connor urges readers to appeal all tickets in court, so that one morning, Angelenos may awaken to a city free from draconian parking laws. We fear Connor is about to learn the limits of collective action, but we’ll leave crushing his youthful enthusiasm to the traffic authorities.
For Vice President of Policy and Communications JC Taylor, 2022 was a year of firsts and bests. As venues reopened, he reinvented himself as a concert goer, seeing Charli XCX, Spoon, Amine, Todd Snider, Saba, and more. On a first trip to Knott’s Berry Farm, JC came extremely close to vomiting in front of a wave of teenagers. While visiting Virginia, he bought a mysterious glowing mushroom against his boss’s sage advice. JC swears it’s his best purchase of the year.
Despite falling in love at first sight with New York City while on vacation, JC returned to Los Angeles, where he made many noteworthy accomplishments. Yes, he was promoted. But more importantly, he continued a winning streak against his golf partner, Davis. He was crowned Ping Pong King of CreativeFuture. And he nurtured relationships with his new best friends – two raccoons, who don’t mind JC’s style of sportsmanship so long as they can nest in his attic.
This year, body snatchers kidnapped Chief Executive Officer Ruth Vitale and replaced her with a look-alike, Betsy the Party Planner from Hell. While Betsy traveled back-and-forth between Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., organizing meetings and meals amidst ceaseless shrieking, Ruth enjoyed a peaceful idyll at her Virginia home. By day, she stared into her navel while sitting on a rock in the Hazel River. By night, she relaxed while scrolling through photos of cute raccoons, including JC’s upstairs tenants. Ruth began to dream of staying in Virginia forever – but then, she remembered Chester, an almost 30-year-old horse who is going to outlive her for SURE. Ruth had to return to LA, at least for Chester if not for her staff, who (except for Jeannie) were almost certainly raised by wolves.
Well, how do you feel? Did the pet photos put you in the holiday spirit? Or did our updates make you reach for a bottle, which you really ought to save for your relatives’ arrival?
Whether we helped or merely jumpstarted your seasonal suffering, we wanted to let you know we’re thinking of you! Thanks for all your love and support. We can’t wait to see you in the new year.
Pugsley and Beverly, Mystery Mutt, Anonymous Raccoons, Chester,
Jeannie and Ruth,
And All the Wolves at CreativeFuture – Namely,
Brett, JC, Adam, Connor, Davis, Nim, and Bryan