We have all seen the Geico commercial where Charlie Daniels takes the violin from a strolling player in a fancy restaurant, rips some righteous fiddle licks and gives it back to the guy before saying, “That’s how you do it, son.” I enjoy everyone on the violin from Daniels to the brother in Dave Matthews Band to Israeli-born Miri Ben-Ari, who puts it down over hip hop beats, to Novi Novog, the lady who played stings for The Time and Prince in the 80s.
To me, there are different ways of doing things and it’s good to study other methods and approaches. New Jersey’ Governor Chris Christie is one to watch because the big fellow is one conservative who is going to tell it like he see it – right or wrong – and let the chips fall where they may. Baller style, that’s how you do it son. I think candidates Obama and McCain were planning the same thing. We remember the talk from both about reforming the system and walking away from the game on top like NFL great Jim Brown. Of course, elected officials often find that easier said than done.
Governor Christie is hell-bend on reigning in state spending and bumping heads with key groups in the process. The recent video clip of his confrontation with a teacher over pay and benefits was an instant classic. The teacher said she was not being paid for her education and experience and Christie basically told her to work somewhere else. Ouch.
Christie says NJ teachers are well-paid and have excellent benefits but they need to understand that average citizens have cut back in these rough economic times and governmental employees must do the same. My mouth dropped when the teacher made her point because we “assumed” in the 80s that we would at least make enough money to paid for our educations. Hell, I simply wanted to make my age and grow old. The price of everything has skyrocketed but salaries are stuck in 1990.
Can a person walk away from a job offer with a salary of the same amount as that person made 20 years ago? No. Our parents always said people with bills should take any income source they can until hard times pass. Guys with children should drop fries, wash windows or collect cans because those kids did not ask to be born. The guy Joseph in the Bible told pharaoh to store away in times of fat in preparation for times of lean.
The now defunct cable channel Fine Living produced a show called Radical Sabbatical about rich people who decided to cash out on Wall Street do things like starting kayak businesses on lovely western rivers. While that might be extreme, I admire my homeboys who made good money in production, the military or teaching and could retire to enjoy family by their early 50s or work less stress, giving back jobs. In actuality, people spend money like money will always come in and the result is sometimes similar to NBA veterans who are penniless by forty. That’s not how you do it, son.
If the budget hawks approach matters like Christie, the average America could see their point. Dave Matthews Band, Miri Ben-Ari and Novi Novog fused hop hip and rock with strings and the results introduced everyone to something new; Novog on Time’s Chili Sauce was brilliant. The same thing must happen in Washington with spending because something has to give.
People on the outside think something has got to give with the education system because teachers are making good money but Johnny can’t read. Of course, the teachers will tell you that we went to school reading back in the day and the family should do more to prepare little Johnny to sit his blank down in class and focus. I still like the programs that bring military veterans into teaching because some kids need a little guidance. That’s how you do it, son.
Christie and the Teacher video