I have something to admit to you. I am tired.
I am extremely tired.
Yes. I admit that I drive from New Jersey to Maryland twice a week amounting to 12 hours in a car per week. I also get up at 5am to do this and get home generally around 930pm to then eat, do more work if needed or try and relax, and then do it again. I do this for my career, and yes it makes me tired enough to fall asleep for four hours on a Saturday afternoon after sleeping ten hours that night. But that isn’t why I am tired, or at least it isn’t why I am writing this post. I am so very extremely tired of the nonstop fire hose of bullshit that is being spewed on a daily basis, from what seems like every human being on the planet twenty-four hours a day for the sole purpose of egocentric grandstanding. And I know. We get it. People are narcissistic on social media. What is he going to tell us next, “that a lack of sleep makes you tired?” No. I mean well yes a lack of sleep makes you tired. I am living proof of that, and I am sure I am slowly taking years off my life, but we already talked about that. I am not just ranting about the “people are ego maniacs on social media” thing. I get it. That is old hat as they say (in the early part of the twentieth century).
Continue reading “Being fake is a now a full-time job”
I have a lot of opinions. They change of course over time. Sometimes they change due to conversations. Sometimes they change by experiences. Sometimes they change inside me and I am not really sure why they change at all. I just know they change, and that’s part of growing, and that’s what I think wisdom feels like when you suspect you’ve gained some.
I’ve never really attempted to write about love. I’ve written songs, letters to others, or tend to find myself in conversations where I express these ever changing opinions about it, but every time I want to sit down and attempt to capture any of my thoughts on the matter, I come up with some distraction to delay the inevitable another few months (I started this post three years before publishing it so months is a bit of a misnomer). Yet to be honest I think about people, and connections, and relationships, and that allusive four letter word a lot. I’m fascinated with the mystery of it all, and I think I’m in good company based on thousands of years of art, music, movies, books, and so on. Continue reading “Selfless Love and Taxes”
Polished shoes. Sharp freshly pressed suit. A whistle on my lips and a spring in my step. I remember the first time I went into New York City for an interview out of college. Head in the clouds and ready to change the world. Now I would love to say over 15 years later that fateful day changed everything, but then I would be lying. In reality I went on a handful of interviews in the city that never sleeps, and in the end I ended up working at a real estate company in Morris Plains, NJ, because as a sales associate my Mom was able to get me an interview. Equipped with a Bachelor of Science in Economics, a Bachelor of Arts in Music, and a minor in Mathematics, I began my professional career as a Project Coordinator for a real estate recruiting department, which was a made up title for the new guy who did whatever my boss asked of me (my boss incidentally had just started in his new job in this recently created department a week before).
My first project is one that I will never forget and laid the foundation for the advice I would give to anyone starting out in the business world. Monday morning my boss came into my office, which was comprised of four cubical like work areas, and dropped a bag on my desk. This was it! The big show. The moment I had been waiting four years for was finally here! All of the classes. All of the studying and papers. All of the thought provoking debates till 3 a.m. with roommates (also 2 a.m. runs to Dorians for their mouth watering Hot Turkey and Bacon toasted sub). In this bag was the start of my rise to the top! Business books about my life will contain this bag and the unknown contents within it. Was it the financial records of my company and I was going to be asked to cut 30% of the budget? Was it a new proposed merger and I needed to analyze whether or not to go through with it (I may have watched The Secret of My Success a little too much as a teenager)?
No. It was none of those things.
Continue reading “How a bunch of business cards taught me all I needed to know about work”
This isn’t Kumbaya
When implementing social business changes into a company or organization there is a lot of talk about “changing culture,” and “digital immigrants,” and other random buzz words or phrases someone read in a “game-changing” book. Yet if you have ever tried to implement “knowledge management” or “social business,” you know that you are going to meet three different kinds of people. Those that hate change and won’t change. Those that are indifferent to change as long as they don’t have to do too much, and those that love change and are evangelists for your cause. The thought process usually goes like this, “We need to change the culture. Tom may be set in his ways, but we can change Tom to think in a new way.”
Continue reading “Hand-holding. Great for campfires. Not for changing business.”
I love airports. Many people don’t I think. I have never conducted a scientific study to determine that statement, yet I think most people view them as a necessary evil. There is the whole dealing with security and the inevitable lines as you get shuffled through the process. Until you finally find your seat on the plane, and then wishing and praying you sit next to an interesting person (at least that is what I wish for, I know others probably wish they don’t sit next to me, since I may actually talk to them for a bit and get to know them). Prior to getting on the plane people are always busy moving about seeking their gate, a magazine for the flight, a loved one that is returning home, or getting in that last bathroom break that doesn’t involve an aisle walk.
I am not saying I am not busy doing all of those things as well. I mean I literally give myself the absolute minimum time needed to make the flight, so I am definitely that guy who is running with a laptop on my shoulder to catch a plane. That sort of gets me to my point actually.
In many airports when rushing off to your gate you have the option of speeding up your walk by walking on a moving walkway, or if you are not rushing you can just stand and relax as you get moved along to your destination, or at least the next walkway.
Next time you have the opportunity, instead of just walking up to the moving walkway and stepping on it, I suggest you give yourself a little kick start and jump onto the walkway. Obviously your technique is up to you, but I prefer the surfer stance on landing (arms out and everything). Not only is it fun to get a running start, but it applies a very important principle that many of us forget.
Continue reading “Airports and the importance of being silly”
“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”
― Mahatma Gandhi, All Men are Brothers: Autobiographical Reflections
Remember that time we were in fourth grade and we…and then in sixth grade we…wow that was nuts when…those were the days right?
If you have ever been in a conversation like this where people are referencing childhood memories like they just took place a few weeks ago, then you will have experienced something I rarely am able to grasp. I have forever joked that I must have been abducted by aliens a number of times when I was younger, because when it comes to happy childhood memories most of them are a collection of images that I have either done a good job at repeating in my head (staring out the window of the family car as we drove somewhere far away because we couldn’t afford to fly, and wondering if the trees could communicate, as they danced slowly back and forth as if they were whispering to each other some ancient secrets), or they are a collection of fake images that I have compiled through parents and family members telling stories of my childhood. I am not even sure if they are real, but I have created them to fill in those gaps in my memory.
Continue reading “Confessions of the Bullied”
Crippling is the fear to know ones true destiny. Staring into its eyes there is nothing but a blank stare in the other direction. Are we meant for such knowledge? There are those that claim they can see into times playbook. It is impossible to judge such a statement, since I have never met a person that can undoubtedly perform such an act. However, I believe it is a possible act. The extent of the human mind is so vast that anything truly is possible. It is a frustrating debacle being so primitive. We peer into greatness only to find a genetic error that must be a problem. To hear a symphony and then play it back like a recording, yet not being able to form simple sentences is not an error or a genetic malfunction. It is a glimpse into our potential, a mere peek at the capabilities of the human mind. Have you ever sat daydreaming and a song enters into your head? The song is played exactly as the true recording had been played previously, even if heard only once before. Note by note an entire symphony is playing inside your head. Every clang of the cymbal, beat of the timpani, phrase of the violin, is played beautifully by your vast mind. Yet, try to hum the symphony as you hear it, or recall every note as your mind has just played it and you will probably fail. The reason is the human mind is like the fierce wolf who roams the countryside devouring a farmer’s livestock at will. The wolf will hunt and at times stay still so that you may actually see the wolf, but in a flash it is gone. The farmer may set up traps to cage the wolf, to trick the wolf into revealing itself, but no cage can hold the beast. It is not meant to be captured, but to grow and breed traveling from one farm to another. Learning more and more as it goes, the beast like the human mind will never stop its pursuit of the hunt. It will grow and grow and to our dismay stay concealed in the wild trapped in our primitive form. Damn the beast they will say, but it is the beast that keeps us hunting. As the beast hunts so shall we. We will hunt until we have met our maker, our seed giver, our God, creator, our reason for living, and when the hunt is over we will begin a new journey in search of more answers.
Continue reading “On Potential”
Strewn from shore to shore, to lands uncharted in the sky, human beings have withstood thousands of years, in which we have seen plagues, momentous natural disasters, and entire empires fall. We have glimpsed into the mind of God through science and mathematics, and have single handedly affected natures deepest cores. We have produced music and art so powerful to the mind we cannot help but to shed a tear. Our emotions and thoughts are like two passion filled dancers moving majestically through time, trading secrets but always maintaining the dance. Like a cub who wanders too far from its den we slowly drift away from the rest of nature. Upon theory after theory we try in vain to discover our origins, our reason for living, and our destination when we die. We have grown so accustomed to the idea that we are people and not animals that we base entire religions on our existence. The fate of the world and the universe lies in our perceived hands. We are human beings.
Continue reading “Being Human”
With the arrival of “The Karate Kid” to theaters there has been much debate over whether or not the new movie can ever live up to the cultural icon from 1984 bearing the same name. Can Jaden Smith live up to the standard that Ralph Macchio set during the Cold War? Will Jackie Chan ever embody the wise old man played by Pat Morita that taught us “wax on…wax off” and the term “Daniel-san?” These questions will be debated throughout the ages, or at least until the new Karate Kid movie gets replaced by the next Twilight movie, but what of Johnny?
When the dust settles and the movie tickets are in, the missing component to the greatness of the original Karate Kid is not whether or not Daniel Larusso uses the crane kick, but the brilliant antagonist played by William Zabka. Better known as “Johnny,” William Zabka epitomizes the quintessential 80’s prick boyfriend character. No other actor in history – I was too lazy to back this up so if some fancy pants responds to this blog with some other actor, they have way too much time on their hands and should find a hobby not involving video games – personifies the classic 80’s movie black and white extreme emotional character. Before movies started to give the “bad guy” feelings and a troubled background so we can relate to or feel sorry for them (see hippy mentality takes Hollywood – some blog I will never get around to writing), the 80’s brought us honest to goodness a-holes we could rejoice as they met their demise. Within the first fifteen minutes of the movie you knew who the good guy was and who the bad guy was, and when you saw William Zabka, you knew which one he would be playing.
Continue reading “Johnny Be Bad – Celebrating William Zabka”
It has been a significant amount of time since I have contributed to this blog so I apologize to the four people who viewed it since then. I’m not sure if it is because I am sitting here listening to “Just Won’t Burn” from Susan Tedeschi, or that I am sitting in front of my personal computer at all after getting an HTC Incredible, but I have decided to climb out of the gutter of mental hibernation and put down my thoughts on the last few months.
As a good catholic boy I feel like writing, “it has been x number of days since my last confession.” That is what personal blogging is correct? It is essentially you and the world in a small wooden booth, sharing your inner thoughts, and hoping for some type of recognition or condemnation. I’m not talking about the Kobe had a good game blog, or the iPhone G4 was leaked in a Chinese brothel. There is enough opinions out there on trendy topics, and I may add some myself if I can keep on this horse for more than a day. I’m talking about that honest to goodness inner reflective blog. The kind that makes you feel like you actually know the person who is writing it. Stephen King writes forewords like that. That’s why I have always liked him as a writer. Not so much because of the stories, although they do entertain, but because when he writes to his readers you can tell it’s not contrived. If they are he’s even more of a writer than I thought. And what are the essays of Francis Bacon or the thoughts of Boethius but inner ramblings put down on paper passed down for everyone to consume? Writing, like anything in the arts, is cathartic. I imagine it has its equals, like building a good deck and putting on the last coat of stain, or winning that big game after so many long days of the season and training camp. There is something calming about the sound of the keys or even the pencil that tends to wash away the prior responsibilities of the day. However, I didn’t set out to write a blog on the benefits of writing so I should probably get back to my title before the two readers of this blog bail due to false advertising.
Continue reading “Reflections on Being Single”