Spin Me, Make Me Seem Better
"Hello, my name is Patsy Tamiano and I am so very pleased to have been invited to speak with you about building effective rapport. This century - and beyond - is all about perception. Effectiveness is built around the happy glam of a good hand shake, a positive smile and a can-do attitude. Thinkers are passe. Business today is about networking and PR, or "mingling" - my own personal umbrella term for all things social. You need to ask yourself, can you mingle?"
What a waste of time. Escape reality with a reality show, WTF?
I prided myself in being a landscaper of insincere stupidity, but now I realize that we were just passing ships (I was the fancy mega-yacht with NBA League Pass, but thats neither here nor there) and her stupidity was sincere.
Substitute ESPN with MTV, ESPN Hollywood with Laguna Beach and Sportscenter with The Real World and I'm in the same sad sorry state. Still, I'm more bitter about ESPN's big trip down the drain than anything else.
But this isn't about ESPN or about every little girl's ambition to be Carrie Bradshaw. Something much more important.
Dwyane Wade. He who brings a smile to my face, makes the hair on my arm stand up and crawl. Makes me giggle, makes me gasp. I just want to spend time holding him.
Or I did. I'm not sure which empty suit is advising Wade, which frat brother thinks his image needs to be smoothed, or - if in fact - if his famed humility is still at the root of him, but his performance today on the Budweiser Hot Seat is nothing short of pathetic.
As the media circus began to encircle D-Wade, I had my hopes that he'd stick to the message brought out in his early DIME features.
Aside: I was going to rant about LaDanian Tomlinson's similar performance weeks ago, but LT is a distant thought on foreign shores . He is the best "pure runner" around today, and we all know neither Jamal Lewis or Edge James can carry his jock.
I will reveal that I'm a bit of a critic, I do something akin to PR for a media master. Yet, I leave the guy anywhere and he strikes gold, "stays on message" and seems genuine. I'm the grasshopper learning, not spitting crap into his ear.
Take it like this.
[Abridged version and may not be wholly accurate, but it might as well be.]
Brian Kenny: Where do you rank in terms of the best players in the game?
Dwyane: I don't rank myself, I have all the confidence in the world and thank god for my skill, but there are many great players in the game. I'm just lucky to be considered amongst them.
Analysis: 7/10 Points scored for humility. But if you want to be the best, time to start going for the jugular. Go on record, be more AI - you have the talent to back it up.
Brian Kenny: What does LeBron James do better than you?
Dwyane Wade: Get players involved, court vision, mofo is 6-8 240.
Brian Kenny: What do you do better than LeBron.
Dwyane Wade: Oh man, Kenny I told you I wasn't going to say anything specific. I might finish better, but LeBron is a great player and I don't want to piss him off if we meet him in the playoffs.
Analysis: 4/10 Start a rivalry number 3. Sure, kiss him on the cheek before a game - but use the media to fuel your competetive fire. Toss out the hack at your side with the communications degree and be more street. You grew up in Chi-Town didn't you? I don't give three if it was the suburbs.
Brian Kenny: Let's forget for a moment that I may be the most Vanilla of all of ESPN's anchors. Let's also forget that Jeremy Schapp, even crazy Buccigross, may be more equipped to sit on this seat. You get to play GM for the Miami Heat. Who would you sign to a five year deal?
Dwyane Wade: Uh... uh... Lebron James.
Brian Kenny: I'm going to flip this on you because my evaluations say I need more moxie. How about a one year deal?
Dwyane Wade: Man, this team needs a shooter. And I'm going to miss Damon Jone's silly antics. I think Damon Jones.
Dwyane's Media Advisor (off-camera): Dwyane, make sure to give a shout out to DJ and call Brian Kenny by first name.
Brian Kenny: You're saying you'd take Damon over Tim Duncan, or because the lobotomized portion of my brain was just reattached how about a silky smooth long range shooting small forward?
Dwyane Wade: That's right. Damon Jones and I'm sticking to it.
Brian Kenny: OK, well I have to respect the guy picking his friend.
Dwyane Wade: Yeah! Whats up D-Jones! Thanks for the oppoutwonitee Brian.
Analysis: None needed, it's that pathetic. Rule is play it real if you have nothing to hide. People will like you more for it and want to have a beer with you. If you do have something to hide, (e.g. George W), pretend you don't. People will like you more for it and want to have a beer with you.