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Uncommon Personalities

The Uncommon Life

Uncommon Personalities: Meet Jillian Brendlen

October 2, 2014
Jillian Brendlen | UncommonGoods

Jillian Brendlen, UncommonGoods Site Merchandiser

 

My hometown is…
Wyckoff, NJ

My favorite product that has entered the assortment at UncommonGoods since I’ve worked here is…
The Tagua Gem Necklace.

I’m inspired by…
My younger sister, MacKenzie, who is always unapologetically herself.

My guilty pleasure is…
Reading Us Weekly. I have the app, and I read it at night before I fall asleep.

An uncommon fact about me is…
A few months before I started at UG, I took a jewelry making class with designer Emilie Shapiro. At the time I had no idea that Emilie was one of UG’s incredibly skilled artists. An even weirder coincidence: sitting next to me in class was future Home Décor & Garden Buyer, Jamie Hoffman! Uncommon connection!

My favorite place to eat in New York City is…
Locanda Vini & Olii in Clinton Hill.

My Style is…
Feminine, classic, and a little bit preppy.

Working at UncommonGoods I’ve learned…
If you have a great idea, go for it! I’m so lucky to be working with such a talented, hardworking, and supportive group of people.

Would You Rather… star in a reality TV show about your life, OR have a movie made about you starring the actress of your choice?
A movie! It would be a semi-biographical rom-com with Kristen Bell as the lead!

The Uncommon Life

Uncommon Personalities: Meet Patrick Jean-Felix

October 1, 2014

 

Patrick Jean-Felix | UncommonGoods

 Patrick Jean-Felix, UncommonGoods Operations Team Lead

My hometown is…
Queens, NY

I’m inspired by…
LIFE. We only get one…better live it well!

My favorite process in the UncommonGoods warehouse is…
Packing and Machine. [The “machine” makes packing more efficient, because some of our very durable items can be packed up quickly, which saves us time and energy.]

If I could meet anyone, living or dead, I would choose…
Nelson Mandela.

If you could have 3 wishes granted, they would be…
To live long enough to see my sons grow to be very successful men, to win the Mega Million, and to have three more wishes.

When I was a kid my favorite television program was…
The A-Team.

Would you rather…give up all alcohol for the next 30 days, OR have to cook all of your own meals (no restaurants) for the next 30 days?
I rarely drink. Thirty days without a drink is a normal thing for me.

The Uncommon Life

Uncommon Personalities: Meet Paul Kvamme

September 22, 2014

Paul Kvamme | UncommonGoods

Paul Kvamme, UncommonGoods Software Developer
My hometown is…
Fargo, North Dakota. Well, I was born in Fargo, but raised in Moorhead Minnesota three miles away. But now that I’m here in Brooklyn I feel like Fargo North Dakota is more representative of where I’m from in the mind’s eye of your average Brooklynite.

The tech project I most enjoyed working on at UncommonGoods was…
Uff-Da, there has been quite a few. Some more rewarding and some more challenging, but I think the one I really enjoyed the most was my first large project. I was a packer in the warehouse who had an aptitude for computers and logic, and my manager picked me out for a pretty complex project (especially for me at the time) writing a script which had the end goal of remapping where everything we sell would live in the warehouse based on frequency of orders, space, and paths people would have to move to get things. It really got my juices flowing in a way I hadn’t had things flowing. It was my first time scripting, and for the first time I was turned on to the idea that I could make a living using my brains instead of my hands.

I’m inspired by…
Roadblocks, I guess. If I have an idea and I can figure out how I may be able to execute it but I keep on running into a roadblock I get obsessed with figuring out how to keep moving ahead. I’ve had so much more fun configuring gadgets to act exactly like I want them to (even if what I want is not what they were meant to do) than actually using them.

My favorite place to hang out in New York City is…
Do I lose points if I say at home with my wife?

An uncommon fact about me…
I don’t like this question…

When I’m not working, I’m probably…
Trying to resist the temptation to read comic books instead of learning new things about programming languages.

The word that best describes me…
Paul Kvamme. Oops, one word… umm… Pawlcuame? Pawlcwaumee?

Since working at UncommonGoods I’ve learned…
I’ve learned how to do a lot. I keep finding reasons to learn new things as I pick up odd jobs from all over the company. When faced with a project, if I know it is possible but I don’t yet know how, it’s that much more exciting.

With a pile of stuff in front of me I would make…
You’re given a foot of string, an empty gallon ice cream carton, duct tape, a pound of shredded newspaper, a long-sleeved flannel shirt, and a pineapple.

Where did I get all this stuff from? Am I on a desert island? Am I locked in a room with this stuff? This question is a little intimidating.

The Uncommon Life

Uncommon Personalities: Meet Joel Villa

September 16, 2014

Joel Villa | UncommonGoods

Joel Villa, UncommonGoods Area Operations Manager
My hometown is…
More like a “homestate.” I grew up in a lot of small towns in Arizona, and a few in New Mexico, but I usually tell people I’m from Phoenix, Arizona.

I’m inspired by…
Creativity: Fashion. Art. Music.

My favorite process in the UncommonGoods warehouse is…
Gift Box – It requires all the care and speed of every other area with less heavy-lifting (which I get a good dose of in Scanning & Stacking, where I regularly work).

Describe your style…
My philosophy has always been: Fashion over function – you must look good always. Despite working in a physical, dirty job, I still enjoy dressing with eccentric, avant-garde, and eclectic panache. You never know when a Galliano or Wintour might pass you on the street or decide to tour the UG warehouse…

The #1 most played song on my iPod is…
I would imagine it’s some Broadway musical powerhouse number, probably “A New Life” from Jekyll and Hyde.

If you could throw the perfect party…
It would be some satirical affair, simply for a good laugh and photo-ops. I’ve often discussed planning one called “Sad Hour,” where table-for-one’s are set up, and only sad, depressing Adele-esque songs are played, with a mandatory high society dress code; mingling is optional.

If I could learn anything, it would be…
It seems simple enough if it weren’t for my procrastination, but I’ve always wanted to learn guitar and piano.

Would you rather… wear the same outfit for a year, OR listen to no music for a year?
There is no way I could go without music for a year. Wearing the same outfit for a year sounds like a fun and challenging project, involving how-to blogging, insta-tracking, accessorizing, and lots of creativity. I might just do it now!

The Uncommon Life

Uncommon Personalities: Meet Raymundo Franco

August 5, 2014

Ray Franco | UncommonGoods

Raymundo Franco, UncommonGoods Operations Supervisor
My hometown is…
Brooklyn, New York

I’m inspired by…
Hard work.

When I’m not working I’m probably…
Playing handball… so see me in the courts.

The best luck I’ve had in my life so far was…
Having siblings.

My favorite ITC process is…
QA’ing orders. (Checking to make sure everything is accurate.)

An uncommon fact about me…
I actually draw whenever I get some type of inspiration.

Working at UncommonGoods, I’ve learned…
To use Microsoft Excel more than I ever have before.

Would you rather… have the ability to fly OR to be invisible?
I’d rather have the ability to fly so that I could go anywhere in the world whenever I’d like.

The Uncommon Life

Uncommon Personalities: Meet Fabian Garcia

August 1, 2014

Fabian Garcia | UncommonGoods

Fabian Garcia, UncommonGoods Operations Associate Supervisor 
My hometown is…
New York City

I’m inspired by…
My kids.

My favorite process in the UncommonGoods warehouse is…
THE MACHINE! (A machine in our warehouse that allows us to automatically pack certain products, saving time and packing materials.)

Since working at UncommonGoods I’ve learned…
How to be more vocal.

The word that best describes me…
Punctual, leader, and determined. Oh you only wanted one. Lol.

My guilty pleasure is…
Playing video games.

If my 3rd grade teacher could see me now, he or she would say…
“I’m so proud of you for the person you are today.”

Would you rather…have perfect self-discipline OR no self-discipline, but never feel frustrated?
No self-discipline.

The Uncommon Life

Uncommon Personalities: Meet Mark Curtis

June 21, 2014

Mark Curtis | UncommonGoods

Mark Curtis, UncommonGoods Senior Web Developer
My hometown is…
Milford PA; as seen on Dale’s shirt in the movie Step Brothers.

The tech project I most enjoyed working on at UncommonGoods was…
The bios page, it holds a secret.

I’m inspired by…
Animation from interactivity. Static elements are boring.

My favorite place to visit in New York City is…
A local, non Starbucks, coffee shop.

An uncommon fact about me…
I was in flash mobs. It’s okay to act crazy in public if everyone else is doing it!

When I’m not working, I’m probably…
Making witty jokes about whatever current situation I’m in.

The word that best describes me…
Sassy.

Working at UncommonGoods I’ve learned
How to work on a team and how valuable I am to said team.

Would You Rather… have to relive the same day over and over for a month (but get to pick up right where you left off) OR fast forward a month (but get thrown into the middle of things without knowing what happened in the month you skipped over)?
Do I get control that day? I’d definitely pick that one. The other just sounds like having been in a coma.

The Uncommon Life

Uncommon Personalities: Meet Cassie Tweten Delaney

June 17, 2014

Cassie Tweten Delaney | UncommonGoods

Cassie Tweten Delaney, UncommonGoods Content Manager & Blog Editor
My hometown is…
Fargo-Moorhead (North Dakota-Minnesota). It’s an interesting situation where two cities form one metropolitan area, but the area spans two states. Technically, I grew up in Moorhead, so I’m a Minnesotan. Yes, people there really do say things like “you betcha” and “Uff da.”

I’m inspired by…
Science, and fiction, and science fiction.

My guilty pleasure is….
How I Met Your Mother. (I read ahead.) Actually, TV in general. I make a lot of slightly outdated pop culture references (mostly to The Simpson’s seasons 1-10 and Seinfeld), but I’m also completely addicted to a bundle of more recent shows, like Game of Thrones and Mad Men.

An uncommon fact about me…
The first published copy I ever wrote appeared in my city’s newspaper when I was 12 years old, after I won a contest asking students to create an advertisement for a local bank. I did the art for the ad as well. I ended up building a career around writing, but my drawing ability hasn’t improved much over the past couple of decades.

My favorite bookstore in New York City is…
This is a tough one. It depends on what I’m looking for. My favorite used bookstore is Unnamable Books in my neighborhood. To browse what’s new I’ll stop in at Greenlight Bookstore. If I’m not really sure what I want, I’ll head to the Strand, because they have everything.

My favorite episode of How I Met Your Mother is…
That one where Ted tells a funny story that has very little to do with how he actually met their mother. (But if I actually had to pick, I think I’d say the one where the gang sets up rules for becoming “a real New Yorker” and they all race to see Woody Allen eating at a restaurant downtown.)

Since working at UncommonGoods I’ve learned…
The importance of TAGFEE (Transparent, Authentic, Generous, Fun, Empathetic, Exceptional) and the value of working on a team that believes in the power of those tenets.

Also, through working on this Uncommon Personalities project, I’ve learned how interesting and funny my co-workers really are.

Would you rather…never get to shop on the Internet again OR only get to express yourself in 140 characters or less for the rest of your life?
I can be pretty wordy, so I think I’d have to go with not shopping on the Internet. It might be a fun challenge to find a loophole and figure out how to buy things anyway (without really breaking the rules).

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