Well Hello there Blog Followers and other random Blog Finders – it’s been a minute!
I sit in the quiet car sometimes on the way home and to be perfectly honest…the “quiet” car i.e. – the place that is supposed to be quiet and relaxing as a train car could be on a commute home ….STRESSES. ME. OUT. Bro!
Every single time, without fail, there are people who don’t abide by the rules of the quiet car. Whether these people honestly don’t care to be quiet or they just aren’t aware of the rules of the first and last car of the train during rush hour… there are always people not following the rules. The rules are simple. BE FREAKING QUIET. But again, all the time, there are people who just aren’t.
Now…when someone is breaking the rules I brace for impact. I think “T-minus….5….4….3….” and the countdown continues until someone YELLS at the rule breaker, “QUIET CAR, THANK YOU!”. Consider this your warning shot rule breaker and I advise you to kindly shut the f up because the next time it’s not going to be so pretty. Mother of 3, business man trying to finish up a call, tourist lost in transit land…Doesn’t matter.
Sometimes the offender laughs it off and other times he/she/they try their luck and continue the bad behavior. Oh boy…in-coming……… ”Excuse me!!!! QUIET CAR!!!!!! THIS IS THE QUIET CAR!!!!!” Yells at least one other person in addition to the original person who fired the warning shot. Everyone roles their eyes and now…it’s on.
People get mad at the people who are yelling for the people to get quiet. Imagine that!? A crazy chain reaction to it all. People yelling at the people yelling at the people to be quiet leads to even more ridiculous noise and now everyone is angry and there is crazy tension because everyone almost got in a fist fight because someone’s cell phone rang. Sheesh! So much for my nice quiet ride home.
Frankly the non-quiet cars end up to be more relaxing. There, in the “non-quiet” cars, if someone happens to be chatting on their cell phone for a few minutes you don’t have to ride in fear of the violent backlash from those nasty quiet car militants and can avoid intense tension while getting home to your family after a busy, stressful day. Mind you…I believe in the rules and hope they can be followed. However do we need make matters worse when someone first steps ever-so-slightly out of line by erupting and compiling the problems while causing a big ol’ scene? I think not. The quiet car is really a microcosm of LIFE and can teach us a lot about society if you let it. I say…Look to the quiet car!!! There are lessons everywhere – even on a stinky commute home on NJ Transit.
Life Lessons brought to you by Chris….you’re welcome.
May your commutes be quiet, friendly and tension-less.
It’s Ad Week here in NYC. You know what that means….lots of panels! Sweet, right!? I love a good panel. I love sitting back and watching really smart executives talk. It’s awesome to see how certain people conduct themselves and interact with other super smart people and answer well thought-out questions provided by an entertaining moderator. It’s great. Get your popcorn people…let’s talk about some industry issues and innovative approaches to solving them!
I saw some awesome panels with great participants from leading companies. Over the course of listening to these folks…some impressed me and other disappointed me greatly. Specific to those that impressed me, I wondered….Are these folks spewing a bunch of hot air while dressing nicely, speaking intelligently and carrying themselves with an overall sense of supreme confidence and just fooling this entire room full of people? Is it a classic executive smoke and mirror show or do they really have the goods? I’ve learned that, in business and life, there are really 3 types of people….1) Talkers 2) Doers and 3) Talkers who do.
At every job I’ve had over the course of my career I’ve noticed “the talkers”…if they are really good they can almost build a career, and a successful one, by just talking and providing very little executional support at all. For some organizations that’s OK and for others it’s a big problem. These panel talkers were good but I took it all with a grain of salt because I didn’t know what their actions were in the day-to-day business comings and goings. They sure sounded good…but were they just talking or actually making it happen?
I wonder if this issue dates back to the beginning of time. Like do you think back in the Cave Man Era that there was one dude who sat in the village meeting and explained to the group how exactly the food for survival would be found, hunted and gathered? I imagine dude is saying something like this “The need for food is abundantly important for survival. In order to meet our nutritional needs and ensure that our race continues to thrive we need to consume food. Right? In order to solve for the issue at hand, we must make sure that food is our focus and that we can find it. Food is all around us…Over the hill there, I picture a buffalo! This buffalo will eventually provide food and energy for many of our people for a long time…we need this buffalo! Our strategic approach will be to allocate enough man power to surround this buffalo while armed with spears to strike down the large animal. After which…the deceased animal will serve our people and our vision will become an actuality.”
This dude sounds like he knows what he is talking about! He has a plan..a vision…and he can articulate that vision clearly. BUT…what about the dude who is actually picking up his spear, running out to the field and killing the buffalo?! Is the speaker man, the very strategic, big thinker actually out there making it happen? Or is he sitting in his cave, warming by the fire, smoking a tobacco leaf, admiring his mighty strategy to save lives? The vision is important but the doers are the one making it happen and taking words and making them into real actions that provide value in one way or another.
For me…I rather see the visionaries be involved with the execution and really actually be part of the action. Otherwise the talkers will get more and more detached from reality and their visions because unattainable. Talk really is cheap…and while you need strategic visionaries in certain circumstances a really awesome, no joke, value providing executive leader will both set the strategy and be part of making that solution a reality.
So. I haven’t blogged for a while. Ya know, it happens….and when I say “it”…I mean LIFE. Comes at ya quick and unfortunately sometimes I don’t have enough time in the day to get down and blog. Getting ready to welcome a new human into the world and into my family has been time-consuming. That, on top of some work mayhem, has made it difficult. BUT…with all that said here we are. And we are here because something got my juices flowing so I carved out some time to make this happen.
We went and saw THE FAMILY the other night out in Westfield NJ. This was said event…the one that got my juices flowing. Let me first say…the movie was pretty freaking awesome. Bobby D was Bobby D. Meaning he. was. AWESOME. And while it made me feel way old to see Michelle Phiefer looking so, well…OLD. She was awesome too. Throw in that girl from Glee and Tommy Lee Jones and you’ve got yourself a fantastic cast that executes on a witty script.
The story of a constantly displaced family in witness protection delivered some serious laughs. The comedy was steady throughout as was the theme and story of “The Family”. The family was tight…they loved each other. They had to. Always being moved around and living in foreign lands they didn’t have much else to lean on other than their family unit and they seemed to always make the best of what some may have considered a shitty situation. The brother-sister duo attacked a new school with a strategic and calculated approach that quickly led to them achieving serious status and protection from the typical crap that can sometimes make life in high-school, and certainly any new school, so difficult. That was fun to watch. The little bro orchestrated the take down of some bullies and the sister showed the entire school how to treat a lady and how to NOT steal her pink pencil-case. All thru the immediate and potentially alarming drama they had a positive and can-do/”no one can touch us” attitude. Solidarity as a family unit was beautiful to watch between bro and sis and that clearly stemmed from Mom (Catwoman/Michelle Phiefer) and Dad (Bobby D) who were as close as close can get…you could tell there was nothing they wouldn’t do for each other.
Normally I would go a little more in-depth on a movie review BUT I don’t want to ruin your potential viewing experience by saying too much about the plot line and/or spill the beans about the ending. BUT here’s the thing…this ISN’T a movie review blog posting. Surprised? This post is something more, something different. This is about the juices I spoke of before and how they are flowing because – while the movie was a good one…it pissed me off.
Let me explain…
While enjoying the movie I couldn’t help but think about how absolutely sick and tired I am of the movies and TV shows that come out depicting all Italians as prosciutto loving, pasta eating, bad suit wearing, big sun glasses having, bad-tempered, non-intellectual, mobbed up, sub-humans!
Wow, that felt good. But, I mean…right?!
Every single movie, including “THE FAMILY, with an Italian “Family” is so filled with stereotypes it’s disturbing. The fat guys with bad accents, chomping on meats and cheeses, muttering “MADON! FUGETTABOUTIT!” were everywhere in The Family. Frankly and unfortunately it’s just become the norm for any newer programming including Italians to show my people like that…it’s sad and I am over it.
I say all that with a clear understanding and opinion that the classic movies are un-touchable. Godfather can do no wrong…Goodfellas is a gem…The Sopranos was the best…Casino is wonderful…you get it, the list can go on. But all these movies/shows are 10+ years old and were tremendously more relevant to the times it was set in than any new movie that comes out nowadays. Unless I missed it…The Family was set in modern-day. I feel like modern-day mobsters and the mafia have all but disappeared and if (not that I know of any…) they still exist they are way less out in the open, operating quietly with subtle movements as organized crime is a big no-no. With that depletion of mafia dudes…shouldn’t the insane stereotypes in Hollywood also trend downwards? Well I’m not seeing it, capeesh?!
Now, like with most stereotypes…the ones in the movie(s) are generally true. Come to a family gathering of mine and you can bet your ass you’ll see some cured meats and soft cheeses on the table along with dark red wines and all the carbs you can eat. Do some of us have on gold chains with crosses on them? Sure. That doesn’t mean we’re sitting around running numbers, breaking legs, racketeering, extorting and/or laundering money. It just means we like to eat and drink and some of us enjoy gold chains. For a long time I never noticed it – but when you say “I’m 100% Italian” – people judge you due to what they see in the movies and assume you are mobbed up and/or have a Uncle/Cousin/Nephew in the joint. Could I have your legs broken? Sure…but not because I’m Italian…because you are an idiot. Just like any other ethnic background could. So stop thinking weird things about me – you jabroni!
I’d like to end this long, admittedly crazy, rant with a plea. A plea to Hollywood.
HOLLYWOOD – I like mob movies. I’d never ask you to stop production of mob movies. But can we keep it modern-day appropriate and, please, have some Italian characters be something other than a mobster from Brooklyn? You do know we are capable of other things right? Doctors, Lawyers, digital media executives! Let’s show the world, together, Italians can make a positive contribution to society, OK? Please comply…otherwise my Uncle Vito is going to come to your house with a baseball bat. I mean it. Thank you! Signed, Chris Signore
Man, golf has some weak ass names. Some great names too…but once you hone in on some of the absolute terrible, country club going, silver spoon having type names it can be really hard to root for some of these pansies.
WEB, AARON, KEEGAN, DAVIS, HARRIS, RORY, GRAEME, DUSTIN, SHANE, BRANDT….I mean is it just me? (for baseball you can add COLE and CHASE to that list)
Then you also have some great ones …I mean BUBBA, BOO, BO, TIGER, Freddy, Ernie, Rocco, Woody…so there are a few gems amongst the lame sauce that really balance the sport.
Johnny Football perplexes me. Normally I know exactly where I stand on people. But here I sit perplexed. I read the above article and it perplexed me even more. Let me explain in hopes that I can iron out my complex emotions…
So everyone knows how much negative press Johnny has gotten over the last few months since he won the Heisman right? Well he’s been bad…if you ask the press. Everyone has shown him out and about with famous people, drinking, reports came out about a past fight, he’s been hanging out with rappers and super models… AND he was even so naughty to oversleep (reportedly and “apparently” due to a night of drinking) and miss a morning session at Peyton Manning’s superstar Quarterback summer camp. What a kook right? I mean, what’s his problem?! Well, not so fast I say.
I’m like “OK press – I get it. It’s easy to cover this poor kid when he is “messing” up in your eyes and every move he makes doesn’t live up to the perfect little Heisman winning gentleman that you might want him to be. Cut the kid a break – he’s 20 and in the national spotlight.” …I mean, right? The kid is 20! Press is all over him and I’m sure it’s not easy. My stance originally was “leave Johnny alone! Let the kid be a kid. He’s going to oversleep and I’m sure drink some beers before his 21st birthday. We’ve all been there – just without the entire world watching our every move”. I do kind of feel sorry for him and can imagine that life in the spotlight might be difficult especially with that angst that can be so prevalent in young men. Then the other side of my perplexed emotions kicks in and makes me lean the other way. What’s the other side think? The other side just thinks…he’s a jerk.
The kid sounds like a jerk…a spoiled little egomaniac jerk and…not only because the press paint him that way …but because he actually is. What’s the saying?… “If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and smells like a duck – it’s probably a freaking DUCK you guys!” I mean – read the article. The story about Johnny playing golf with his dad and cursing, chucking clubs and disrespecting his pops is disgusting. He wants people to feel bad for him because of his new found fame? – SORRY BRO – you’re a famous college athlete, deal with it. And…deal with it without being a complete and utter jerk face. Sorry about all the attention you get…but perhaps you could handle it a little better and be a…oh I don’t know…good person?
Maybe I’m not so perplexed anymore. “Johnny Jerk face” is just a jerk. While this is disappointing because I was originally pulling for the kid – I sure do feel better having solved this conundrum.<
If I never hear of and/or see this dude again I would be a happy man.
What an absolute disgrace. There is literally no-one on the planet I despise more right now that this joke of a baseball player. I’m embarrassed that I ever rooted for him and I wish his stench never touched the Yankee organization.
Of all the brilliant moves the Yankee’s front office has pulled off over the years this one may actually go down as the worst in HISTORY. I hope, really hope, that they find a way out of paying him the remaining $60 MILLION on his deal…but something tells me A-ROD is going to be laughing all the way to the bank despite his absolutely despicable legacy.