Appreciate Everything in Work and Life

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Peter Klein, MediaWhiz

By Peter Klein, senior vice president of media services at MediaWhiz

I typically write about performance marketing, but in the wake of being harshly affected by Hurricane Sandy, as so many others up and down the East Coast have been, I am going to write about appreciation. As I write, my family and I are on day eight of life on Long Island with no electricity, no heat, no TV and, worst of all, no Internet access! This situation has helped put into perspective what I take for granted as part of my daily life.

I have friends and family that have had their homes flooded or destroyed entirely, all while I escaped with only minor property damage and transformation of my home into a wine cellar at 55 degrees. I haven’t slept more than a few hours in the last week.

Trees and power lines are down. School has been closed all week, and Halloween offered a much-needed break. Lines of 50-100 cars and three-hour waits to get gas can still be found on every major street corner. My car has become an expensive generator to charge my phone. My office, located on Water Street in Manhattan’s Financial District, has been closed since the storm. Regardless, I continue to repeat to myself: “I am lucky, and I appreciate what I have.”

It’s amazing what the human spirit can overcome, and there are many positives to take away from this experience.

I am blessed with two great daughters, Jessica (7) and Amanda (4), who have been troopers throughout this stressful ordeal. I’ve actually read a few paperback books by flashlight that I’ve been meaning to get to since 2010.

McDonald’s, with its free Wi-Fi access, has become a sanctuary despite the penetrating smell of french fries. My car has become a toasty office for conference calls. Ad:tech is somehow still on at the flooded Javits Center. We have fled to my relative’s house after they regained power and luxurious heat but no cable, phone or Internet. I am eternally grateful to them for allowing us to infiltrate their home with our electricity-starved toys and work devices.

I repeat, as should you: “I am lucky, and I appreciate what I have.”

I may not have seen TV in a week, nor have I been able to get Internet access on my PC or live in my home while my bank asks for my mortgage payments and my county asks for taxes. But I realize I am very fortunate.

I have family and friends that look after me, and I look after them. I learned that I can survive a traumatic experience, though it is truly nothing compared to Hurricane Katrina or the daily hell many in Africa suffer with no news on if or when life will return back to normal.

I have the right to choose the next U.S. president today. And amidst all this, I was nominated to run for the board of the Performance Marketing Association, which fittingly ties this back to a performance-marketing article.

The world moves on and we continue to come out stronger. It can always be worse, so you should count your blessings. I repeat, as should you: “I am lucky, and I appreciate what I have.”

Peter Klein is senior vice president of media at


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