The legendary Bill Parcells is famous for saying: “You are, what your record says you are.” This statement haunts me these days because I agree with it.
When I was in my 20s, I was a budding star in corporate America. I was promoted virtually every year, I was the youngest person in my grad school, at one point I had 17 direct reports, etc. etc. Things slowed down when I hit 30 and have ground to halt in the last few years. Hell, I’ve actually regressed. I’m doing the same work I did 10 years ago except I don’t have the fire in my belly that young men & women who want to prove themselves have. I’ve become what I used to respect the least, a guy who wants to do the bare minimum and log off. Is my new attitude a troubling sign of lethargy and disillusionment or is it wisdom gained via experience?
To be fair, I have never thought of myself as some sort of prodigy or intellectual giant. Heck, most of last week I had the theme song from the Kit Kat commercials stuck in my head. Worse yet, I recently started playing FIFA 21 during some of my most mind-numbing weekly meetings. My colleagues and clients speak so slowly and say so little of actual substance that I need a mindless distraction to avoid infuriation. I kid you not that, prior to my therapeutic, cyber-soccer salvation, I’d end up anger-eating out of a mayonnaise jar with a tablespoon twice a week because these worthless meetings were driving me batty. The other three days a week I’d run to my pull-up bar and start knocking out pull-ups while these idiots blabbered nonsense. I was morphing into a physical oddity; a big, fat gut coupled with a ripped back.
I’ve never held ambitions of being a CEO or COO. I don’t want to be interviewed by Entrepreneur Magazine or be featured in the WSJ – that type of “prestige” doesn’t motivate me in the slightest. Nonetheless, I feel like an NFL Team that started the season 4-0 and has gone 1-3 since: The locker room is a bit unsettled. So, what to do to turn my season back around? I’m considering the following six options:
(1) Leave my current, massive corporation and avoid any company in the future that has more than 1000 employees. Generally speaking, the cream always rises to the top. Not so in a 400,000-person organization. There are layers and layers of dense bullshit and total assholes that ensure the cream’s rise is a painful, 20-year ascent. Even then, this rise is highly unrewarding and dependent not on talent but sycophancy..
(2) Dedicate more time to unprofitable frivolities (such as this blog)
(3) Start a custom koozie business
(4) Finally launch my glow-in-the-dark cowbell product – “NightCow” (Patent Pending)
(5) Get drunk and high on a much more regular basis; waiting for my inevitable, big breakthrough à la that imbecile skateboarder with his cranberry juice.
(6) Open a Porno Theatre. In doing so I can simultaneously take the porno industry back to its roots while capitalizing on society’s ever-accelerating depravity and desire for bizarre, sexual “thrills”
I must say that merely putting these six gems on paper has boosted my confidence. Could a mediocre man come up with multiple guaranteed winners in such a short time span? I can’t wait to tell my boss tomorrow morning that I’m resigning.
“Did you think I was gonna rework PowerPoints for the rest of my life? Give me a break!”