It will soon be time for the Greatest Show on Earth to take centre stage once more.
The World Cup of Football. FIFA, the international fraternity of Soccer playing nations and the sporting federation with the most member countries will stage their spectacular event, held every four years, for the first time on the continent of Africa. South Africa plays host to the 32 countries vying to hoist the treasured cup.
I will now make a stab at predicting the results and giving some basic info on the teams in each group.
For the initial stage of the competition the teams will be divided into groups of four teams each. These four teams will play a round robin among themselves and two top teams in each group advance to the next stage. Various seeding and selection processes have been done to minimize the chances of groups from the same region meeting each other in the first round.
Group A comprises host nation South Africa, Mexico, France and Uruguay. I’m actually upset that only two of these teams can advance. Host South Africa might sadly become the first host nation in history not to advance to the next stage. Mexico is my pick to make it out of the group second.France will win the group I expect. Past Champions Uruguay are quite a talented team but they tend to get too emotional and play very rough. I just hope that they don’t damage the Mexicans and the French too much with their ugly tackles.
Group B features South Korea, Greece, Nigeria and Argentina. I anticipate some incredible matches from this group but eventually when the dust settles I expect Argentina to win the group followed closely by Nigeria. The well coached Greeks and the hard running Koreans are going to have a rough and short tournament this time around.
Group C will be easily won by England over the USA with Algeria and Slovenia boarding the planes to watch the rest of the tourney at home.
Germany and Ghana are my choices to top Group D. This group also features a tricky Serbian team and the hard working Veteran Aussie Socceroos who could hopefully pull a surprise or two.
Netherlands should easily win Group E and I expect Cameroon to benefit tremendously from the South African home crowd support and also make it out of the Group. Japan and Denmark will display their respective styles of play but the lack of star quality and inability to surprise will tell in the end.
Defending champions Italy are expected to find a way to win the Group F ahead of strong defensive unit Paraguay. New Zealand and Slovakia will be leaving shell shocked but wiser.
In Group G North Korea is likely to get hammered by three of the best attacking units in the World. I expect Brazil to top the group ahead of Ivory Coast and sadly Portugal featuring the highly paid Ronaldo are likely to come up short due to defensive gaps that Drogba and the Brazilians will surely exploit.
For the final group,Group H, I am hoping that Spain and Honduras overcome Chile and Switzerland.
Moving into the Second Round all the games are now very exciting. If my predictions for the Group stage pan out then we’ll see a matchup between France and Nigeria. I expect the French to win out here by at some stage putting Cisse on the field instead of Henry. Henry has lost a step or two and lacks the confidence and killer instinct that made him so formidable in the past. Nigeria’s team is not quite as deep as the French and by this stage of competition they would have some injuries or sending offs that will prove fatal against the Fighting Cocks (as the french team is known).
Game 2 will be Argentina versus Mexico. I think Messi will be forced to show why his entire nation is counting on him because the Mexicans will prove a difficult opponent to finish off. It will require incredible dribbling skills to create the key opening. Argentina will find a way through.
Game 3 England versus Ghana I expect the English to prevail. Ghana’s team is powerful but I think England is ready to go all they way this time round.
Germany versus the USA my crystal ball says the USA will actually win this one surprising most. Landon Donovan becomes a World wide hero after this.
Netherlands will easily dismantle Paraguay in Game 5 but they will suffer from some serious injuries and a few cards by the time it’s over.
Cameroon become the African Heroes when they snuff out the Italians in Game 6.
Brazil barely squeezes past Honduras in Game 7 making some wonder if they are really watching Brazil or did the Hondurans swap jerseys before the match.
Spain versus Ivory Coast presents another upset to the World Order when Ivory Coast smashes Spain in Game 8.
The Quarter finals, Netherlands versus Brazil and after throwing everything at the Brazilian defence the Netherlands finally win due to a goalkeeper lapse by Brazil. Brazil is red carded in the second half and a key Dutch player seriously injured.
France versus England and the French team which looked ominous so far gets a severe test from the English. Cisse scores early for the French but Lampard fires from outside the 18 to equalize at the edge of halftime. A cagey defensive second half results in many fouls and yellow cards.Rooney makes the difference with one moment of brilliance in overtime after an otherwise lack lustre game. England wins.
Argentina loses to USA. Messi is marked out of the game and the rest of the team fails to sparkle. Donovan is brutally fouled after finally unlocking the Argentine defence. His replacement scores the winning penalty kick.
Cameroon versus Ivory Coast, the first All African clash, sparks a great degree of interest, but neither team has their full compliment of players due to cards recieved in earlier rounds and they seem nervous. After a fairly boring game Cameroon scores one more goal totally against the tide of play. Drogba and Eto’o exchange shirts and smiles in a photo sent around the world.
Semi finals :
Netherlands lose 4-1 to England a dazzling display of attacking artistry Rooney doing what Gasgoigne did at Euro 96.
Cameroon beat the USA on penalties after Donovan skies one and a Damarcus Beasley sidefoot shot is easily stopped by the Cameroon keeper.
Finals — Cameroon versus England and after an early goal by Eto’o it’s England all the way. England wins 3-1 in normal time.
Recently I was forced to face one of my greatest fears.
I drove home and my little daughter was sitting in the back seat. I was about to turn into my gate which was closed when I noticed two well dressed young men walking up the road.
Suddenly I felt fearful. Although I really had no rational reason to feel scared I suddenly realized that if these two men were up to no good and if I turned in to open my gate then as I opened the gate the two men would have the perfect opportunity to ambush me.
Always being one to trust my intuition, I drove past my house, and past the two men, and turned my car around at the top of the road. By the time I turned the car around the men had continued walking straight past past my house and were now around the corner and out of sight. I figured I must be just getting old,paranoid and crazy, or something, but hey, better safe than sorry, right ?
I drove quickly to my gate… got out the car and opened it and then drove in fast. As I got out the car I could hear the sounds of a tv inside and remembered that my wife had a day off today and was inside already.
My daughter, who normally goes with me to close back the gate, was actually sleeping, in her car seat, so I closed the gate by myself and I was busy taking her out of the car when I sensed a presence.
I looked up and sure enough at the gate peering over at me were the two men. They had doubled back and looked menacing.
I was now facing one of my worst nightmares. My life and that of my wife and daughter were in danger if these men chose to attack us. I called out my wife’s name and heard a click as she opened the latch on the front door.
The men realized I was suspicious of them and they hesitated a bit. I suddenly heard my fear talking to me. “They aren’t sure if you have a gun or not”. It was my only chance I had to appear fearless and confident. I stretched to my full height as I took my daughter, still sleeping out of the car only using my left hand and kept my right hand at akimbo, like a gunslinger, ready to draw.
I turned and looked straight at the men and in my mind,silently, I shouted,
“Step across that gate and you’ll both die !”.
My silent telepathic shout seemed to make the men jumpy, amazingly they actually started to step back and they actually ended up on the far side of the road, still watching me like scavengers on the hunt.
I went inside quickly with my daughter lying on my left shoulder. I then put my daughter in a bed, she was still sleeping, as I frantically tried to explain to my wife what was happening. I looked out the window with sweat washing the side of my face.
I could not tell if they went up the road or down. No sign of the men they had disappeared quickly.
Fears usually do when you stand up to them.
Jamaican politics is said to be “a struggle for scarce benefits carried on between hostile tribes perpetually at war”. Tribes are not always political though. They can be religions and those they disagree with may even call them cults. Tribes can also be a powerful economic and social force.
“Since the dawn of civilization people have formed tribes, and research demonstrates that humans are genetically programmed to form into groups. Within every company there are tribes, often several, consisting of 20 to 150 people who know each other and work together. But while everyone tribes, the culture of each tribe is different, as is its effectiveness. Improving a tribe’s culture—and its chances for greater success—requires a tribal leader who not only understands the tribe but can leverage its collective assets to build a greater team.”
That quote is taken from a website promoting a book called “Tribal Leadership”.
Some believe buying such a book is a waste of time since they feel that a Tribal Leader cannot be trained or created but is a natural, a charismatic personality,someone great that spontaneously arises when the right conditions present themselves.
Obama used a “grass-roots” strategy, with the simple “snowball effect” idea of building ever-enlarging tribes, to reach the White House. His strategy was flawless but his Personal Charisma is also undeniable.
On a more intimate level Mystery, a world famous Pick-Up Artist (PUA), a master of seduction, actually encourages his students to become “Tribal Leaders” because he says all women are biologically hardwired to respond most strongly to these “Alpha Male” types.
Mystery believes that the Charisma comes from having the leadership position. This is contrary to the commonly held view that Leadership is attained by the one who exudes charisma.
Mystery says that, in the “Game of Seduction” at least, once you display qualities of Leadership, once you display “Social Proof”, you automatically become attractive.
This might also help explain people, such as Hitler, who possessed incredible public speaking Charisma yet were awkward in a personal setting. With a carefully crafted stage presence, with many symbols of Power, they can create a type of Charisma.
Obama said, at the largest gathering of Native American Tribal Leaders, last year, “Treaties were violated,Promises were broken. You were told your lands, your religion, your cultures, your languages were not yours to keep.”
Civilization has not always been kind to Tribes. Ask Chief Seattle. Ask Africa.
Given the past, Obama said he wouldn’t have been surprised if the leaders hadn’t come, saying it showed “an extraordinary leap of faith.” Sitting at a table on stage in the Interior auditorium last year, Obama signed a memorandum directing all federal agencies to develop within 90 days a plan to improve tribal consultation. “These are challenges we can only face by working together,” he said.
Obama is clearly not just Charismatic but also an extraordinary leader in his strategic ability to create consensus, be authentic, visionary and inclusive.
Daniel Quinn believes the future will once again belong to tribes. In his books he argues that Modern Civilization is not working and to survive it must revert to what works…Tribes.
You may not have Obama’s leadership abilities but you can still shape the future by deciding which tribes you belong to.
According to marketing guru Seth Godin, modern technology has made it even easier for us to form into tribes and these tribes can now easily become Global, because of the Internet.
Seth Godin outlines the following principles for aspiring Tribal Leaders;
Firstly, Create a change, a meaningful Tribe will in some way challenge the status quo. It will seek to improve conditions.
Secondly, Tribes develop their unique culture: “A secret language, a 7-second handshake, a way of knowing whether you are in or you are out.”
Thirdly, tribes have curiosity: “about the people in the tribe, and about outsiders.”
Fourthly, the Tribe fosters Connection to each other. They allow people to achieve what they want more than anything else….to be missed ! If someone isn’t there other tribe members should notice and miss them.
Seth Godin agrees with Mystery in the end because he says “All tribal leaders have charisma. BUT, you do not need charisma to be a tribal leader. Leading a tribe gives you charisma. If you look and study the leaders throughout history, you will see where the charisma comes from. It comes from the leading.”
Finally Great tribes Commit: They commit to the cause, they commit to the tribe, they commit to the people.
Become a Tribal Leader !
“What Bobby Fischer was to chess,what Bob Marley was to Reggae Music, thus was Bruce Lee to Martial Arts and Action Movies. This one not only packs a punch but becomes Immortal by virtue of it’s talented cast and coherent story, rare in the genre.” I said at 11:32pm on December 23rd, 2008.
I was posting a brief movie review to Flixster, (an application allowing you to rate various movies online), I was describing, one of my favorite shows, the movie “Enter the Dragon”.
A guy named Mad Bull commented at 4:34am on January 11th, 2009. He said, “You know what, Mark? I think you would make a good blogger. Check me if you are interested if you want info on how to get started.”
The rest,as they say,is history.
In just one year of Blogging I think I can safely say it has changed my life. I went on an amazing personal journey of self-expression just as my friend Dennis Hammond (creator of Hammondville.com) had predicted when I launched out with a shout of Geronimo !
Travels during which I soared to the moon and waxed philosophical in ramblings like “Shooting the Moon”. Although I confess that that post was not particularly interesting I think it helped me to learn a lot about my personal style of writing. I used a technique which has served me well since then called “Writing the Natural Way”.
From the start I was continually encouraged by my Mentor (the Blogfather) Mad Bull and he directly influenced me to learn of Charles Pick’s Advice which has guided all my best writing from early on.
Blogging is a perverse activity, kind of like internet webcams, I imagine, in that it is very personal and yet makes you feel connected to a wider community of like-minded individuals the world over.
This type of paradox and my gift for making ridiculous connections and synthesizing myriad experiences led to blog posts like “Marriage,Matchmaking and Masturbation” and my personal favorite “Doppelganger”.
“Doppelganger” was inspired by a post by Ruthibelle. I feel connected to bloggers like these who I began to read more and more regularly. My blog “Swamp Things cannot Read any Moore” inspired Ruthibelle to talk about comics in one of her later blogs also. Each one Teach one, One hand rubs the other, or insert other catchy cliche’ here.
The exceptional blogger and photographer Stunner also inspired me so I dedicated “Workman needs bigger Zoom”, about photography and critics thereof, to him.
These are not people I know personally, yet. Yet, I feel like I know them, like we’re a close-knit community. A family almost. Sometimes I even imagine heaven to be like a big Blog roll call in the sky. Annie Paul, Mad Bull, Stunner, Ruthibelle, Kingston state of mind, Pssst Browning !,the list goes on and on…yep that’s heaven to me. But we have no plans to check out just now and if we do, inadvertently, then I suspect the journey won’t be over but rather just moving on to greater heights.
During the year (2009) I realized a dream, after some hiccups and hurdles, by visiting Calabash Festival at Jakes. I described it as a Writer’s Hajj and was close enough to talk to one of my heroes, Colin Channer, (although I didn’t). Channer had nonetheless taught me “How to write a Rahtid book“. I wrote “Journey to Jakes” based on this pilgrimage also.
Pico Iyer, an author who was interviewed at the Festival, was supposed to be the main focus of one of my blogs. I never did get around to writing it.
For every blog idea I wrote the truth is I have ten others or so I didn’t get around to. They still swim around,these incomplete ideas,like malnourished fishes, in the Aquarium of my mind. They bounce into the glass occasionally asking me silently to feed them. When they ask loud enough I do feed them, with relish.I feed them to the hungry public.
Incomplete Ideas. Perpetually Incubating. Floating Skeletons. I was still being hounded by my greatest enemy…Procrastination. My greatest enemy, my only formidable opponent, was in fact…myself.This was clearly shown by the unfinished serial that I began about Theo Adams and Storm and Hezekiah Scythe. Interesting Characters, I thought, but they will only live again if I can conquer my most fearsome foe…procrastination…myself.
I was somewhat saddened that my readership remains largely uninterested in the wisdom of Marcus Garvey or Jefferson, but I will continue to post poetry and prose and anything else that I find powerful.
Learning was what this blog, and Life, is all about, and that I did.I learned but I also have questions that remain unresolved. In my blog “Heavy Sex will drop from the sky” I explored the question all true artists must face. I spoke of the temptation to sell out,just to eat a food, versus staying true to their art and possibly starving to death. Post humous success versus instant gratification.
I succumbed to temptation and wrote popular posts like “Dora the Sexplorer”, “Think before you ink” about tattoos and “Sean Paul”. These posts are my most popular ever.
No longer was I the only one reading my blog. It was a tremendous thrill when when my blog was featured on Sean Paul’s official site. For me it was a great accomplishment but then again I realized that five minutes of fame, even riding on the coat tails of a great Artist that I always respected and admire was not the Summit.
I realized that even when I do cover popular and current events it should be with some degree of insight, some new twist, beyond the obvious. It should have a unique “Heavy Logix” stamp, my imprimatur so-to-speak. Instead of merely a crass or commercial angle I must deliver some substance that will stand the test of time. My “Inter-View” post about Vybz Kartel fit the bill exactly. It took on a current topic but tried to make points that would be over looked by the local mainstream media.
The passing of great men like Michael Jackson and Jim Rohn led me to post also. Jackson also inspired the Reggae cover versions post as i searched to try and find some of those songs to make a tribute album.
In the coming year I hope to do more comparisons like I did in the article Pepsi or Coke ? Comparing things like Charisma and Character and explaining the difference between Rappers and MCs perhaps. You can also expect more movie reviews or impressions like Emperor’s Club and lots more exploration of the confounding cybernetic possibilities of our Minds like I did in the story “Banshees”.
Blowing my own trumpet like this is quite tiring so here’s wishing you all the best for the New Year and remember that in whatever you do Be Happy !
Sherlock Holmes is one of the world’s most loved fictional characters. He has launched several copy cats and spawned a million imitators. Everything from t-shirts, to movies, to comic books, to books (of all genres) and even museums, have used him as an inspiration.
In fact two of TVs most popular characters today, George House and Adrian Monk, both owe a debt of gratitude to the highly rational and eccentric detective. House actually lives at an address referencing the 221B of Baker Street.
The huge popularity of Holmes and ( his loyal “Boswell” ) Watson, has perhaps over shadowed a previous character that was just as important. Who did Holmes and his creator “borrow” from ?
I speak of Dupin, a character created by Edgar Allan Poe, in fact Dupin’s adventures began the whole detective genre before the word “detective” even existed. Like Holmes, Dupin had a male friend who narrated all his tales and he relied on logical deduction to perform amazing feats like reading people’s minds and of course solving crimes that the ever bumbling police forces could barely comprehend.
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, inventor of Sherlock Holmes, realized his debt to Poe by making reference to Dupin in “The Study in Scarlet”, Holmes very first published adventure.
Watson mentions Dupin in passing and Holmes says that Dupin is a rather “inferior fellow” to himself. Doyle later said, “Each [of Poe’s detective stories] is a root from which a whole literature has developed… Where was the detective story until Poe breathed the breath of life into it?”
Detective C. Auguste Dupin first appears, in the first detective story ever,”The
Murders in the Rue Morgue” (1841). He reappears in “The Mystery of Marie Rogêt” (1842) and then in “The Purloined Letter” (1844).
“The Purloined Letter’ by Poe is definitely one of my favorite stories of all time. In this short story Dupin saves the day by being able to understand the mind of his opponent. His opponent is quite formidable, being that rare type of individual who has mastered both Art and Science, or as Dupin puts it, he’s both “mathematician and poet”.
Also this fearsome opponent is without scruples and honor.
Sherlock Holmes had fearsome opponents also, none moreso than the Evil genius Moriarty.
Sherlock was able to survive only because he knew a martial art, called Baritsu, in the books. Bartitsu was an actual martial art of the time, developed by Edward William Barton-Wright, and perhaps this was what Doyle was referring to. Bartitsu in fact was like Jeet Kune Do, an eclectic
fighting art which had practical techniques to win at any likely fighting range.
Wikipedia notes, “As detailed in a series of articles Barton-Wright produced for Pearson’s Magazine between 1899 and 1901, Bartitsu was largely drawn from the Shinden Fudo school of koryū (“classical”) jujutsu and from Kodokan judo, both of which he had studied while resident in Japan. As it became established in London, the art expanded to incorporate combat techniques from the Tenjin Shinyō, Fusen and Daito schools of jujutsu as well as British boxing, Swiss Schwingen, French savate, and a defensive la canne (stick fighting) style that had been developed by Pierre Vigny of Switzerland. Bartitsu also included a comprehensive physical culture training system.”
Such details, which Conan Doyle added constantly to the Holmes stories, made the character very life-like and he had many weaknesses too.
For instance although his mind was an efficient computer he was very messy in his personal habits and he is often characterized as Bohemian. Sherlock Holmes also had a Cocaine and possibly a Morphine addiction.
The recently released version of Holmes, starring Robert Downey Jnr. even speculates that Holmes may have had Bipolar disorder. Although many fans will not like this portrayal, in Holmes first appearance in “Study in Scarlet”, his biographer Watson says ;
Nothing could exceed his energy when the working fit was upon him; but now and again a reaction would seize him, and for days on end he would lie upon the sofa in the sitting-room, hardly uttering a word or moving a muscle from morning to night.
This description gives some credence to the possibility.
Another source of inspiration for Sherlock Holmes and perhaps the reason that Watson is a Doctor of Medicine is Dr. Joseph Bell.Bell, who once employed Doyle as a clerk, emphasized the importance of close observation in making a diagnosis. To illustrate this, he would often pick a stranger and, by observing him, deduce his occupation and recent activities. These skills caused him to be considered a pioneer in forensic science (forensic pathology in particular) when science was not often used in the investigations of crimes.
This apparently “psychic” ability, in reality based on keen observation and logical reasoning and sometimes elements of Forensics, was also common in the adventures of both Sherlock and Dupin.
There’s nothing funny about Domestic Violence but I do think that the comedians, like those on Saturday Night Live and Wanda Sykes, got the recent Tiger Woods story more accurately than the News channels did.
It seems more plausible to me that Tiger was being whopped by his wife and running for his life than the news reports that said that he just crashed and was rescued by his wife who smashed his rear window with a golf club to take him out of the car.
We’ll probably never know the full story but someone was discussing the whole incident with me and she made an interesting comment.
She said that the amount of women Tiger has shows that he has some kind of mental problem and that it would have been better if he had had one serious woman on the side. Her comment totally surprised me but I couldn’t quite put my finger on why at the time. It sounded logical enough, less affairs means less betrayal right ?
Later that week on Facebook another lady I know wrote an interesting blog about Emotional Betrayal and how much it hurts yadda, yadda, yadda. I remember thinking to myself that no man would ever have wrote about Emotional Betrayal without mentioning Sexual Betrayal first. Suddenly I realized what I found jarring about my other good friend’s comments.
I realized that the average man is more affected by Sexual Betrayal than Emotional Betrayal. Women are exactly the opposite usually.
Basically it’s another one of the many areas in which men and women differ.
Should the toilet seat be left up or down ?
We all agree that you should not cheat.
However I think men are more worried about the Sexual aspect of cheating than the Emotional.
If you are in a marraige or long term relationship would you prefer that your partner is suddenly discovered to be cheating on you with several people, none of whom have a deep emotional attachment with them, or would you prefer to discover that they are having a long-term deeply emotional affair with one person ?
The interesting thing is I believe most Women will answer this question differently from most Men.
Most men would prefer to hear that there’s only one other man, or “Joe Grind”, since that means less sexual betrayal. Most women would
prefer to face less emotional betrayal, as many “floozy” type affairs would suggest, than to hear that there’s another woman who their guy might actually love.
We all agree that cheating is bad and of course the Emotional and Sexual Betrayals can overlap or transform from one to the other but where there is a distinction I definitely think that men and women are going to react differently.
So in conclusion I’d like to make a startling and original announcement ;
Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus.
Bet y’all didn’t know that !
This article is by Jim Rohn and published here in memory of him. He passed away Dec 5, 2009.
Do you want to achieve your most important goals? In my opinion it gets down to two simple words, “easy” and “neglect”. People often ask me how I became successful at the early age of 31, while many of the people I knew did not. The answer is simple: During that 6-year period of time (age 25 to 31), the things I found to be easy to do, they found to be easy not to do. I found it easy to set the goals that could change my life. They found it easy not to. I found it easy to read the books that could affect my thinking and my ideas. They found that easy not to. I found it easy to attend the classes and the seminars, and to get around other successful people. They said it probably really wouldn’t matter. If I had to sum it up, I would say what I found to be easy to do, they found to be easy not to do. Six years later, I’m a millionaire and they are all still blaming the economy, the government, and company policies, yet they neglected to do the basic, easy things.In fact, the primary reason most people are not doing as well as they could and should, can be summed up in a single word: neglect.
It is not the lack of money – banks are full of money. It is not the lack of opportunity – America, and much of the free World, continues to offer the most unprecedented and abundant opportunities in the last six thousand years of recorded history. It is not the lack of books â€“ libraries are full of books – and they are free! It is not the schools – the classrooms are full of good teachers. We have plenty of ministers, leaders, counselors and advisors.
Everything we would ever need to become rich and powerful and sophisticated is within our reach. The major reason that so few take advantage of all that we have is simply neglect.
Neglect is like an infection. Left unchecked it will spread throughout our entire system of disciplines and eventually lead to a complete breakdown of a potentially joy-filled and prosperous human life.
Not doing the things we know we should do causes us to feel guilty and guilt leads to an erosion of self-confidence. As our self-confidence diminishes, so does the level of our activity. And as our activity diminishes, our results inevitably decline. And as our results suffer, our attitude begins to weaken. And as our attitude begins the slow shift from positive to negative, our self-confidence diminishes even more… and on and on it goes.
So my suggestion is that when giving the choice of “easy to” and “easy not to” that you do not neglect to do the simple, basic, “easy”; but potentially life-changing activities and disciplines.
To Your Success,
Credit Statement to be included in Reprints:
This article was submitted by Jim Rohn, America’s Foremost Business Philosopher. To subscribe to the Free Jim Rohn Weekly E-zine go to www.jimrohn.com Copyright © Jim Rohn International. All rights reserved worldwide.
A great interview is, to my mind, and as the name suggests, an inter-view. It’s not just one person presenting their view and ignoring the other but rather an exchange of ideas. A conversation that informs and entertains the viewer. Like a beautiful dance it seems effortless when really done well.
People will have various opinions about who is the best interviewer and what the perfect interview looks like but for me Larry King is the King. Larry King manages to always get the best and the most interesting points out of his ever fascinating guests. Amazingly he does it without the badgering and paparazzi style used by others. He is not a sensationalist, he seems
genuinely interested in his guest’s viewpoint. The guest is always the star of Larry’s show.
Oprah is also quite an amazing interviewer, but she imposes a lot more of her personality and ideology unto the interviews. Her viewers of course love that, but to me it can be a serious weakness. For example when she interviewed Tiger Woods she was visibly disheartened when he made his “Coblinasian” remarks. Instead of staying objective and probing deeper into his mind set I think she wanted to end the interview right there. Oprah’s journalistic ability to go for the jugular is not to be under rated though. Oprah made Mike Tyson cry, need I say more ?
One of the best interviews I ever personally saw was at the Calabash Festival, in 2009, when Pico Iyer was interviewed by Paul Holdengraber. The men obviously knew each other well and that enabled them to have a free flowing conversation that was a delight to watch. Holdengraber was like a Maestro, a Matador guiding the more powerful Bull, he was humble in the role of interviewer, yet he knew just how to elicit from Pico Iyer, some of Pico’s amazing experiences and insights into life. In the interview Iyer described how his home had once been burnt down and how it freed him from the limitations of writing from his copious notes. When my hard drive crashed recently I got much inspiration from remembering his positive attitude even in the face of severe loss. Pico Iyer, who is now famous as a travel writer, (and for himself interviewing the Dalai Lama), said a lot of things that were meta-physical, his points hit home, for me, on various levels of understanding. For instance he said that you get from a place, what you carry there. Simple comment yet quite profound.
Ian Boyne is probably Jamaica’s best known interviewer, aside from his long running TV show Profile, where he interviews top achievers, he also has Religious Hard Talk, where he holds debates with people of all kinds of spiritual backgrounds. He also does interviews for the government broadcast shows of JIS and he writes in the newspapers regularly. Clearly he is a
master of time management but for me his interview style was in former years quite annoying. He would always have a very interesting guest but I would be frustrated at his insistence on asking them uncomfortable questions instead of focusing on their path to success. Also Mr. Boyne at times would seem to be trying to cut in on the guests spotlight as if trying to show off that he was well read and he sometimes had an apparently condescending manner. Happily this has changed as time progressed and in his more recent interviews Mr. Boyne has always allowed the guests to be more expressive. He is a great interviewer especially for his ability to find interesting guests and for his consistently professional manner.
Winford Williams is quite good with his show On Stage where he has interviewed a wide range of musicians and singers. I like the humble approach he uses, like Larry King, where the guests are allowed to express themselves freely. Winford does seem to like stirring up conflicts though, for instance his show was in the centre of the Beenie Man / Bounti Killa beef.
Winford himself is always calm and professional and he’s had some amazing interviews over the years. Guests like Ninja Man and Billy Ocean as well as Sean Kingston and Fat Joe and Air Supply. Simply an amazing list of great interviews.
Ninja Man is probably the most entertaining local interviewee. He always uses the local patois, and he has some amazing insights on topics ranging from music, to social reform, to marriage, to religion. He once went toe-to-toe with Emily Crooks, a top journalist trying to embarrass him and he beat her at her own game. Ninja Man’s life story has been full of amazing events which he recounts in a humorous way.
Ninja Man is one of the greatest “clash” deejays to ever walk the Earth. One of the few clashes he didn’t win took place at Sting, in 2003, when Vybz Kartel punched him down before he got a chance to show his ability. This pre-emptive strike was reminiscent of Israel in the Six Day War. It is with Gaza however that Kartel is identified. The punch was to be just one
of many amazing steps on the journey of the man born Adidja Palmer. Vybz Kartel. Emperor of the Gaza Empire.
Every day the newspaper uses Sex and Violence in their headlines to sell. The society buys it, hungry for more, but yet the same papers,and the same society, point fingers at artists like Kartel when they do the same in their music.
Veteran journalist Cliff Hughes, realizing that Kartel is the most influential artist in the country, tried initially to pin the heavy burden of the country’s extremely high crime rate on the slim shoulders of the Deejay. Being a father himself “Addi di Teacher” said simply that parents are responsible for raising their own children. He said his job was to make music and make it as well as he could and that for moral advice and correction of society’s ills we would have to look elsewhere.
Kartel has always been a master of words but on this night he revealed the man behind the words. A real man, not a misogynistic cartoon. The playful moments shared by Hughes and Palmer in the Kartel recording studio were a hilarious joy to watch.
“Addi di teacha” was also “Addi di daddy” , he was a son, a brother, his older sister is a real school teacher and is still praying and trying to convert him to Christianity, he is a citizen of Jamaica. He has to face the problems common to many Jamaicans, like being turned down for a Visa. Kartel had questions he could not answer, he was not trying to appear perfect. “Next interview mi will answer dat one Cliff”, he said when asked if he was monogamous.
Kartel began the interview wearing his trademark shades. He was defensively shielding off a hostile world. He said it was a media backed conspiracy that was holding him up as a symbol of violence and moral decay. He felt like he was just a Gladiator fighting to the death for the amusement of bigger, hidden powers. Later, as the interview progressed, he dropped his glasses and revealed the sensitive intelligent eyes. “When the gladiators die they will be replaced by other Gladiators”, he said.
The society had better listen. Listen not just to the songs. Listen to the Man.
Don’t just view, scapegoat, and point fingers. Inter-View. Exchange ideas, Learn and Grow. Kartel said his songs are a mirror of the society. His songs will change when the society does. The direction we go in will depend on how much we listen to each other.
Recently I saw that Michael Jordan was inducted into the Hall of Fame for Basketball. Unfortunately I read Yahoo Sports Writer Adrian Wojnarowski
and he said Jordan had turned the momentous and historic occasion into a vicious and vapid attack, like a bully tripping the nerds of his past.
Fortunately I saw the video of Michael Jordan’s Induction speech for myself on Youtube and while it’s true that he recounted many bad experiences of his past, I think that the speech overall was great and hugely inspiring.
In my opinion Michael Wilbon wrote a more accurate view than that of Adrian Wojnarowski, but opinions will differ.
For me it was an incredibly frank speech and definitely straight from the heart. The tears were flowing copiously before he even began.
Michael Jordan has been criticized in the past for having an image that was too commercial and over managed. “Not politically savvy” and “not real enough” said some critics formerly. Now when they get Michael talking straight from the heart he’s again criticized for not being graceful or not sanitized enough.
I like the “Unplugged” Jordan a lot, the passion and the intensity and the competitive spirit are what made him a great player, possibly the greatest ever. That’s what Michael Jordan demonstrated in his speech.
He recounted a whole slew of obstacles but the purpose was to show that he used these things as motivation to get better. He said the competitive Fire forged in him by his family was the key to his success and then he described each of these obstacles he overcame as more wood to the fire. Without this wood he would not have become great.
Seeing the speech for myself I didn’t get a sense of bitterness or arrogance at all, he was actually just explaining the key to his success and for that this fan is very grateful.
His closing line “Limits, like fears are often an Illusion” was very powerful.
As for his critics, well folks they’re just going to be more wood for the Fire. MJ , “his Airness” will probably be playing somewhere at age 50 and I wouldn’t bet against him.
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