Depression doesn’t have to get the better of us. But it can try…

In the fall of 2013, I gave a TED talk on what I learned as a progressive, on-air talking head at Fox News, where I worked for two years before leaving and joining my current home, CNN. After all, one of the most frequent questions I was asked during my time at Fox was how I did it, how I was a fox in the henhouse – or a hen in the Fox house, if you will. The questions came mostly from fellow liberals who had not watched much Fox News but had seen the most outlandish clips of Bill O’Reilly or Sean Hannity that had made it to “The Daily Show” or YouTube. My time at Fox News was marked by meeting and working with some of the kindest, smartest, and most talented people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting in life.

As a job seeker, the goal is to get your foot in the door, ace that interview, land the job and power through negotiations. How can you succeed if there’s a lack of clarity surrounding what you’re supposed to excel at doing?

If you’ve ever witnessed your boss doing something that seems unfair to you or a co-worker, you might have wondered, “Can they really do that?” They don’t teach workplace law in school, and so collectively, Americans tend to lack understanding about what employers can and can’t do where employees are concerned. But that’s up to your employer — no law requires them to pay you for time you didn’t work, even though you wanted to work out those final two weeks.

GASBAGS BOOMER ESISASON AND MIKE FRANCESCA - In case you had not heard, the radio judges found the Mets player guilty of committing a heinous crime by daring to miss the first two games of a 162-game baseball season.
MLB Catchers — highest career “caught stealing” percentage

Throwing out would-be base stealers is one of a catcher’s most important jobs. In a previous blog post I ranked the 21 best catchers in MLB history, based on games caught, offensive statistics, and defensive statistics. Below is how those 21 catchers rank according to their career “caught stealing” percentage. A quick release, strong arm, and the ability to make accurate throws are important for a catcher. Of course, having pitchers who can keep baserunners close helps. The era in which a catcher played can also be a factor, since base stealing was not as prominent in the 1940’s as it was it the 1970’s.

Career caught stealing percentage:

1) 57% - Roy Campanella

2) 56% - Gabby Hartnett

3) 49% - Yogi Berra

4) 47% - Bill Dickey, Ernie Lombardi

5) 46% - Ivan Rodriguez

6) 44% - Thurman Munson, Elston Howard, Ray Schalk

7) 43% - Johnny Bench

8) 41% - Jim Sundberg

9) 40% - Bob Boone, Rick Dempsey

10) 39% - Mickey Cochrane, Lance Parrish

11) 35% - Gary Carter, Brad Ausmus

12) 34% - Carlton Fisk, Ted Simmons

13) 28% - Jorge Posada

14) 23% - Mike Piazza

source for statistics:

MLB baseball Power Rankings - April 1, 2014

MLB Power Rankings - baseball’s best to worst:

1) Yankees
2) Pirates
3) Dodgers
4) Indians
5) Nationals
6) Royals
7) Rays
8) A’s
9) Reds
10) Red Sox
11) Cardinals
12) Tigers
13) Angels
14) Braves
15) Orioles
16) Rangers
17) Diamondbacks
18) Giants
19) Padres
20) Brewers
21) Rockies
22) Blue Jays
23) Mets
24) Phillies
25) Cubs
26) Mariners
27) Twins
28) White Sox
29) Marlins
30) Astros

New York Jets are desperate, to be considering Michael Vick as quarterback

It’s been reported that the New York Jets are considering signing Michael Vick as quarterback for the 2014 season.

Vick has always been over-rated as a quarterback. He was a pretty good runner but never did much to stand out as an all-around quarterback. When he played in Atlanta supposedly the Falcons had to cut the playbook in half since he couldn’t learn some of the plays.

The Jets need to hope that Vick doesn’t remain the turnover machine that he was in 2012, when he fumbled the football 8 times in 5 games, to go along with 6 interceptions in those 5 games. Or that he remains injury-prone like in 2013. In six games started he fumbled the ball four times and threw three interceptions.

The Jets also need to hope Vicky doesn’t stir up any new controversy with his dog, like last year when he posted a photo on Twitter titled “we workin” with a picture of his daughter doing homework - but sharp eyes noticed a Milk Bone box in the background, which led to Vick later admitting that he now owns a dog. He stated that he wanted his “children to develop a healthy relationship with animals.”

Hmm. Well, it might be more believable if it sounded like it was something he would actually say. Sometimes having your publicist write your statements isn’t the best way to build credibility.

When his kids get older they’ll probably ask Dad what he was thinking back in the day when he electrocuted, hanged, and abused dogs. Animal rights groups ought to try to get that family meeting on tape, and sell it as a fundraiser.

We don’t know the breed of Michael’s dog; although we can be hopeful that it is being treated well, since the last thing Vick needs is for the dog to get worms. That wouldn’t help his image.

Maybe he ought to ask his dog to teach him how to hang on to the football. But I don’t think you can carry a football in your mouth in the NFL.

A job interview at Goldman Sachs

I’m sure lots of people have had strange experiences while searching for and interviewing for jobs. People who do the recruiting and interviewing of job candidates often have funny stories to tell.

Sometimes I wonder though, if other people looking for a job have had anything similar to mine.

Once I went on an interview for a job as a college recruiter, with Goldman Sachs. This particular office was in lower Manhattan. The director of college recruiting was a guy named Mike. At the start of the interview he mused, “There’s mostly women working in college recruiting.” Hmm, maybe this gives me an edge, I thought. He didn’t ask me any questions though. He just rambled on for a couple of minutes about Goldman Sachs. Suddenly, he looked past me (his office was surrounded by windows). He stood up, grabbed a stack of what look to be like tickets to a game or concert wrapped with elastic bands, and raced out the door. I turned around, but he had already fled down one of the hallways, disappearing from sight.

So I sat there for a few minutes, wondering what I should do. Wait until he comes back? Leave now? It started to dawn on me that I wasn’t going to get this job even if I stayed, so I was about to go when a girl named Kim walked in.

“Mike had to go, but I’ll finish the interview,” she said brightly. Then she proceeded to talk a little about the job. She didn’t ask me any questions, or ask if I had any questions about th position. She did talk at length about the bars in the area and how everyone in the department liked to go out for drinks after work.

After a few minutes she stood up and held out her hand. “It was nice to meet you,” she said. For some reason I said thank you, nice to meet you too, instead of saying what I really felt, which was, why did you even bother to call me in….

I’ve thought that maybe they didn’t like the way I looked. If that’s the case, and I’m sure some interviewers consider that above all else (although they would never admit it), why not ask for a picture? A photograph with the resume on the back. It would save us all a lot of time and money. By looks, I mean beyond the blue suit/white shirt/red tie/polished shoes/clean shaven appearance.

Who knows. Maybe this isn’t as ridiculous as some others’ experiences. It feels like it was a waste of time and energy. On the other hand it’s given me something to write about, so maybe it wasn’t a total loss. Stay tuned for upcoming stories about job search…