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Best and Worst Christmas Presents Ever

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I’m sure you’ve noticed that, for the past few months, I’ve been blogging/vlogging heavily about Happywork, and Happywork TV, and happiness in the workplace. This blog of mine hasn’t been a terribly content-diverse place as of late.

Yes, spreading the word about Happywork is a super-important mission in my life, but so is having fun. I enjoy going on Mark Reardon‘s radio show on KMOX, even if we’re not talking about social media or solving the world’s problems.

As we approach Christmas, I was thinking about buying gifts for my loved ones, and that got me considering this: what would I deem the best and the worst Christmas presents I’ve ever received? Identifying the best present ever is so easy – it’s no contest. Mark and I had to think hard to come up with what we might consider the worst present ever. Neither of us has ever received anything terribly offensive, but we came up with some good stories. And we took some calls, and the callers had a few winners. Who gives their daughter-in-law a potscrubber for Christmas?

Take a listen below, and Happy Holidays to all of you. Thank you for being a friend of mine.

—–> CLICK HERE TO TAKE A LISTEN <—–

Loving Soccer is Unamerican, According to Mark Reardon

Mark Reardon thinks soccer is Communist, and of course he’s crazy. But at least he let me plug my book. I always love going on KMOX radio – thanks so much Mark for having me in.

Let it be known – soccer is an awesome spectator sport!

—–> LISTEN HERE <—–

The New iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus – My Discussion With Mark Reardon on KMOX Radio

iPhone comparison

The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are scheduled to ship any day now. The 6 is a 4.7″ phone, while the 6 Plus is a 5.5″ monster phablet. Which one am I going to buy? I am still undecided, but that big phone is so tempting. I use my phone for email, tweeting, texting, photography, and Netflix. A big screen would make all of these activities more awesome. Most calls I take on it, I’m using my Bose QC-15 over-the-ear noise-canceling headphones (which truly means I don’t care about how I look when taking calls!). Therefore, I’m not holding the phone up to my ear. And besides, as I said on-air, not sure I really care how I look with the phone.

Mark Reardon saw me post the above photo on my Facebook page, which depicts my 3.5″ iPhone 4S and visual cutout representations of the two new iPhones, and called me in to talk about the two new iPhones.

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN

Or click here if the above mp3 file isn’t working for you.

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Click below to listen to my most recent appearance on the Mark Reardon show on KMOX 1120. We discussed the super-successful ALS Ice Bucket Challenge charitable campaign that’s generated well over $60mm in donations, and even more visibility and awareness. Has the backlash begun? How did this campaign take off? When people refuse to do the challenge, what does that say about them and the campaign? Is wearing a hat for the challenge cheating? (I kid, Mark. I kid ’cause I love). Mark and I try to cover these topics in the 11 minutes we have together.

As always, thank you for having me on! And thanks to Dave Cline for sending me this mp3 file.

—–> LISTEN NOW <—–

Texting and Driving – Dangerous!

Chris Reimer on the Mark Reardon show

A few months ago, I joined Mark Reardon on KMOX for a discussion on texting and driving. He noted that I posted about the subject on Facebook and foolishly challenged me to a debate.

In all seriousness, I always enjoy going on Mark’s show, and I hope you enjoy the discussion we had. And I must thank him for allowing me to shamelessly plug my upcoming book Happywork, releasing on February 17, 2015.

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW

One Tweet to a Life in Hell – The Justine Sacco Affair

Some people are scared to use social media. It seems too “Wild Wild West” to them. Some of those people are fearful of learning how to do it, some are scared to make a big mistake, and some wish for a simpler time when the definition of “friend” was narrower and “in the flesh.”

As an extrovert, I’ve found my stride in life, so to speak, on social media. The last six years have found me starting a tee company, making many life-long friends, and changing careers. I enjoy expressing myself, learning, having discussions, and entertaining myself on a daily basis.

Someday, I am bound to make a big mistake. I will offend the world at large with an inappropriate photo or tweet. I don’t think this will ever happen, but I should never say “never.” If or when it happens, I hope to have friends coming to my defense. I hope it’s something I can recover from. I hope my family doesn’t bear the brunt. Mostly, I really, really hope it never happens.

I don’t mean to say our lives are not in our control; I firmly believe we are in control of our destiny.

So what happened to Justine Sacco? A PR pro for IAC, she presented the social media community its latest scandal with her insensitive tweet about Africa. While on a plane to said continent, the tweet was blowing up worldwide and she likely knew nothing of it until she landed. Upon disembarking, if her phone was able to grab a cell tower or some wifi, she was undoubtedly slammed with tweets, emails, texts, voicemails, Facebook messages and more. That must have been a bit jarring for her. IAC quickly sacked her.

What should we make of this affair? I always like to dial down to the foundation, to the simplest and most elementary lesson to be learned. This is to say, “What should we do FIRST?” In this case, it’s “BE NICE.” Sorry to keep beating this dead horse, but that’s the first thing we all need to know.

Guys, Justine’s situation is a complicated issue. In reading the countless articles on the affair, I’ve seen the right wing attack the left wing. I’ve seen people make this an age issue, a gender issue, an unemployment issue (how can SHE have a job while I’m unemployed), a race issue, a white guilt issue, and more. You name it; everyone has an angle on this, a prism through which they judge her.

However, if Justine had just remembered rule number one – be nice to others – this would have never happened to her. So what seems complicated is actually quite simple. Be nice!

Through the millennia, since the very advent of the spoken word, we humans have harbored thoughts that we have chosen not to verbally articulate. Justine’s AIDS tweet is the latest lesson on why that’s the case. As I state in the interview I recently did with Mark Reardon on KMOX, most of us have told an offensive joke or two. Some of us have been to comedy clubs and laughed at a comedian saying horrible things. But NO, you can’t say these things on social media. Similarly, you wouldn’t say these things aloud in a crowded coffee shop, on a job interview, on a first date, or at the office water cooler. In those places, in those circumstances, you have to practice restraint.

So that means no off-color jokes about AIDS. No Hitler jokes, no Jewish jokes, no special needs jokes, none of that. You think it’s funny? That’s great – keep it to yourself. You don’t want to offend an entire continent with one tweet!

First and foremost, think of others instead of yourself. Had Justine done that, she might have considered the 1 million Americans living with HIV, or the 30 million worldwide. Let me stake out some brave territory and say AIDS is terrible. Don’t joke about it! Be nice to others.

Be nice!

To listen to my interview with Mark Reardon, HIT PLAY on the second sound file down

Other takes:

1. AdWeek initially reports on the situation.

2. Here are 16 tweets she might now wish to take back. No. 16 is way out there, in my humble opinion.

3. Here’s a robust discussion on my Facebook page about Justine and how long (if at all) we should heap scorn on her.

4. If you read nothing else on this issue, read Roxane Gay’s take on it.

5. Some additional sympathy for Justine’s plight.

6. A friend defends her, saying she’s guilty of not being good at Twitter.

7. The Twitter lynch mob.

Workplace Horror Stories – My Appearance On The Mark Reardon Show on KMOX

Recently on Facebook, I posted about a restaurant in Jerusalem offering a 50% discount in exchange for the patron simply turning off their mobile phone.

Then, I posted a request – give me your worst workplace horror stories – negative events that have happened in your working life, and my Facebook friends lit up the thread. Wow, go read the comments.

Anyway, my good buddy Mark Reardon of KMOX Radio fame saw both posts and asked me to come in. I wasn’t sure which we’d talk about, but we touched upon both. As always, thank you for having me in! See you next time.

TAKE A LISTEN BY CLICKING HERE
(look for the little play button near the bottom of the page)

The Price of Soda at Work – A Discussion with Mark Reardon of KMOX Radio

Through the haze of Obamacare website snafus, government shutdowns, gun control and all of the other sticky issues of our day, only one topic is worthy of serious discussion and consideration here on my blog: what should a can of soda from the work soda machine cost?

Don’t laugh! There’s simply no way a can of soda at work should cost 85 cents. It’s too expensive, but this was the price we were paying at Falk Harrison until the owner of the machine pulled it from the premises and explained he was not making any money.

For some additional backstory on why this issue merited discussion on the radio (something I’m still not sure of), take a listen to my appearance on Mark Reardon‘s show on KMOX.

Listen by clicking here

If by chance the link above isn’t working, proceed to this page and listen to the last sound file on the page.

Larry Conners and His Facebook Problem

I’ll spare you the details, as they’re available here, here, here, here, here and here. The summary is that local St. Louis TV anchor Larry Conners, who had been on the air for 34 years, was fired after alleging on his work Facebook page that a 2012 interview he did with President Obama drew the ire of the IRS. As the IRS is currently in some hot water for allegedly targeting right-leaning groups, this charge is not as crazy as it sounds.

It turns out that the IRS had started working Larry over several years previous to the Obama interview. This made his Facebook post look a little funny, and after some deliberation, KMOV terminated him. I joined Mark Reardon to discuss the situation, including a very important distinction to make: did Larry run into a Facebook problem, or a personal judgement problem that just so happened to play out on Facebook?

As always, thanks Mark for having me on your show.

CLICK HERE TO HAVE A LISTEN

And here’s a link to my friend Aaron Perlut’s piece on Forbes.com.

Unfriending People On Facebook

unfriending people on Facebook

When scanning your Facebook news feed, do you ever run across posts that infuriate you? Do you have certain trollers that always jump in on your posts and make comments that get your goat? Did you make Facebook friends with a stranger a year or two ago, and now you wonder why you’re staring at their meaningless updates?

Mark Reardon was in a ornery mood one night, and started unfriending the jokers in his Facebook news feed. In this radio debate, I explain to him that there’s no reason to be a big meanie. There’s a more humane way to silence the knuckleheads on Facebook.

Take a listen here to my KMOX radio interview with Mark and let me know what you think.