Warning — BUT NOT APOLOGY — I did watch several consecutive episodes of ‘Louie’ before writing this. If you are not familiar, just…don’t be surprised if my humor is a bit darker than normal. Or maybe it’s not! Or maybe I’m just super dark all the time and I didn’t know it.
In any case.
I was recently speaking to a CEO/co-founder who interrupted me to give me unwarranted (though happily accepted) advice. In the Silicon Valley, “CEO” is like being VP at a bank: anyone can be one. (Insert bank joke about VP of Janitorial Services here. I would also like to insert my own joke about CEO of the street corner, or CEO of those shoes hanging from a power line in a seedy part of town.) In this case, the CEO in question is an individual who has successfully started healthy companies that are still standing and still thriving and are not just a crew of 5 people that all live in the same house. (I might be borrowing from the show ‘Silicon Valley’ now. Or maybe from many real-life situations including Facebook’s origin. Regardless.)
Tangents aside, this CEO listened to me apologize for something I said that I truly believed. I didn’t actually say “I’m sorry” or “Excuse me” or anything apologetic outright. Instead, I had said, “That may seem a bit vague or fluffy.”
As soon as those words left my mouth, he stopped me. “Listen, I want to give you advice. This is life advice, not just for work. Don’t ever apologize for being who you are. What you just said was the best thing you’ve said in our entire conversation.”
To be clear, that “best thing” was not the apology statement, but what had preceded it (which I had worried was too vague or fluffy). But that ish HIT ME. I didn’t directly apologize, but I really was being apologetic.
This concept is SO similar to negativity.
When I was in high school, I had a coach who would constantly call out his athletes on being negative. So often, those athletes would retort that they were “just stating facts” or were “being realistic.” Perhaps, but they were pointing out things that they VIEWED as negative. (“It’s so hot outside” or “I didn’t get enough sleep last night” were popular.) That’s straight up negz. (CLARIFICATION: “negz” is short for negative. Why did I not remove it and forgo clarifying? I love a gratuitous z.)
The greatest lesson my very brief existence in the Silicon Valley has taught me: live passionately, or not at all.
In other news, I am still laughing to myself about that salt water taffy labeled “Orthodox Chews.” (LOOK IT UP.) God bless those masters of pun.
This is me in public on Tuesday night. We are bar trivia regulars because it combines useless knowledge and competition, and that’s KINDA my favorite thing. (Please cross reference my extreme love for the phone app game Heads Up.) I also have no idea why I’m single. The boyz should be lining up for that hooded heat.
I’m headed to Salt Lake City this weekend with this person above, amongst several others who were present when this photo was captured. Believe it or not, we are all headed to Utah for a race. (A running race, for most of us. A couple will likely be racing to the bottom of a beer can. Actually, all of us will after our races are through.) I’m only doing the 5k, mostly because I want the free stuff, as is my motivation for 70% of life. (I’m looking at you, Yelp Elite title.) I CAN’T WAIT!
Any recos for SLC?
How Louie-level serious was this post?
Will anyone buy me Orthodox Chews and deliver them to me?
On a scale from 1-10 how excessive are my parenthetical statements and asides? (You are allowed to go off the scale, or on a scale of a different unit of measure.)