T-Pain is one of the wisest, most quotable scribes of the 21st Century. His records “I’m Sprung” and “I’m N Luv (Wit’ A Stripper)” took the worlds of philosophy and academia by storm. The following is a selection of his most insightful quotes, organized by topic.
On Blazing Your Own Path:
“…rapping was just something that I started doing ’cause I thought it was cool. I just went ahead and did that cause everybody was doing it.”
On The Importance Of Good Grammar:
“…it’s some ‘having-fun-with-my-niggas’ dancing, you know what I’m sayin. If you saw me and my niggas in the club, you gonna be like ‘them niggas there is trippin!’””
On Ray-J’s Swangin’ Man-Meat:
“It’s not many guys who can go after Ray J. The man got a huge meat, okay? He got length on him. I got the width, the shit is wide. He got a foot on him. Man got a foot on him. Much respect Ray. Man to man, no homo. I know when respect is due. The man swangin’. Ya’ll seen that shit, ya’ll know the man swangin’.”
On Proper Composure At The Golf Club, Good Dental Health:
“There’s a lot of talk that I flipped over in a golf cart, that’s fucking true. It did happen like three days ago. My ass is on fire right now. My side hurt, my mouth hurt… I bust my ass. I’d show you the marks, but I don’t wanna pull my pants down right now. I got my teeth fixed the same day. Rich nigga teeth.”
T-Pain is a Grammy Award winning-artist, an active member of MENSA, and holds a PhD in Particle Physics from MIT.
by Rigoberto Morfin
Meeting successful people has helped me analyze my career, and has motivated me to continue trying especially during these hard times when many of us are unemployed. On Thursday, April 23rd, James Fernandez, the CFO from Tiffany & Co., gave a speech about “The Path to Professional Success” at ALPFA Baruch Chapter’s 2nd Annual Business Banquet. He warned us: “Be careful when you give your opinion, don’t give it freely. Be thoughtful and insightful. Your opinion says a lot about you.” Later that night I was told more about the dangers of opinions by Alberto Flores, an executive at Deloitte and one of my mentors in New York City. “Miss California Carrie Prejean is a perfect example,” he said. “She shocked the audience by saying same-sex marriage should not be legalized. That is probably what cost her the Miss Universe 2009 crown.”
I’m no beauty queen, but I know we’ve all had similar experiences when we’ve expressed an opinion that we regretted. My friends often joke that I always give my opinion regardless of whether it’s politics, religion, or other potentially sensitive matters. This is fine in your personal life, but it’s something I’ve learned to be careful about on the job.
While working at a Forex brokerage firm, I was talking with a rich prospect from South America. I told him that my mother was from Caracas, Venezuela. “That is where I live,” he said excitedly. “What is your opinion of Hugo Chavez?” Without thinking, I told him that President Chavez was too socialist for my taste. Afterwards my rich prospect stopped returning my calls. A few weeks later I heard from the Geneva office that he opened an account with a Russian coworker.
Another time the director of global sales asked the currency brokers to agree to a monthly sales target during a meeting. I quickly spoke up with my sincere opinion. “I don’t think we can reach the monthly target after the firm just cut their marketing budget completely,” I said with frustration. “We are barely getting any leads – from fifty leads per day to less than five.” Later that day, I found out that the director thought I was being confrontational, and his attitude toward me soured.
At the end of the ALPFA event, I ran after Mr. Fernandez to introduce myself and ask him the same question I’ve asked Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and former N2h2 CEO Philip Welt. “Do successful people suffer more from mental turbulence and stress when they go to sleep than regular people?” I said curiously.
“That is an unusual question at these types of events.” He considered my question thoughtfully. “Well, it is basically the same. Through life you learn how to leave work behind when you go to home.” We firmly shook hands and I took his business card. After that I walked away, pondering what I’d learned.
Before moving to New York, I had the opportunity to analyze employees’ performance with customers at various Seattle branches of U.S. Bank. At the end, I gave a presentation to all the branch managers. I told them that most cashiers at a specific branch lacked customer service skills. The manager for that branch interrupted me. “Most of our employees have been working in this industry for many years and have been trained from upper staff,“ he countered. I didn’t give a contrary opinion and at the end of the presentation recommended boosting interaction with customers to create brand loyalty and lower employee turnover. Afterwards, the northwest regional manager congratulated me and told me that if I ever wanted to work in a bank to please consider them.
During his speech, Mr. Fernandez described his frustrating first interviews out of college with top firms. He couldn’t get a job offer. “Maybe I was a bad interviewer or I said the wrong things,” he said. If anything the job market has become more difficult since then. Now it pays to be extra careful with your opinion.
Rigoberto “Rigo” Morfin is a seasoned finance professional residing in New York City. He graduated from the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business, and has worked as an account executive at leading foreign-exchange investment firms. He is currently on the lookout for his next big challenge. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Kevin: f***ing union is striking outside my building
making a F***-TON of noise
I want to eat their throats
Cameron: what union?
Cameron: lol what do they want? a bigger untenable debt bubble so we can construct more housing units that nobody can afford to buy?
Kevin: they are bitching about being replaced by non-union labour
Cameron: ahahahaha rofl
“They took our jobs! Mu’f***az willin’ ta work fa less!”
Kevin: Once again, the unions make a nuisance of themselves.
“I quite honestly feel that current labor unions in the United States are an absurd bastardization of a once useful social construct. Where there once was a need for strong unions to protect workers as the industrial revolution introduced health and safety issues never before seen to the world, their current incarnation is often nothing but an mere shimmer of their earlier intentions. The 19th century brought worker protection against unfair and unsafe labor practices into the realm of government legislation, which is where it should stay.”
thats what f***ing minimum wage is for
and all those ass-backward safety requirements
Kevin: also, I personally feel that employers are over-responsible for workplace injuries. If you are a dumb-f*** and fall off a building, that’s your own damn fault, your family shouldn’t be able to sue the company into the ground. However, on the other hand, employers should be responsible to provide adequate safety equipment if requested. It’s like the f***ing seatbelt law, if you dont want to wear the f***ing thing then don’t! The only person you’re going to injure is yourself.
Cameron: you’re preaching to the choir here, haha
Email to political organization Washington Bus regarding their (in my opinion) misguided goals:
From: Cameron Newland
Mon, Apr 27, 2009, 5:08 PM
subject: Issues: What We Stand For
I went to a WashingtonBus event last week at Moe Bar, and my friend and I enjoyed ourselves quite a bit. People there who knew what The Bus was (I didn’t) said it was a sort of non-partisan organization that advocated young people getting involved in politics. I just checked out your website, and upon looking at the Issues: What We Stand For page, I saw some things that I believe need correcting (lest someone else like me comes to your site looking to join and reads some things that they don’t agree with and promptly leaves your site without dropping you an email detailing their concerns).
First, the Issues page looks very partisan. In fact, it sounds really socialist/liberal. You don’t want it to look like that, because that limits your audience as an organization. It will turn people off who don’t agree, and they won’t ever join.
The Health Care blurb was brief, nondescript, and perfect. Everyone can agree with what you said there. Kudos.
The Environment statement is something I would definitely advocate changing. Why? It seems to suggest that pollutants/emissions are the only enemy when it comes to environmental stewardship. That’s not true at all, in fact, the real driver of environmental change is population, not pollution. More pollution is a byproduct of more population. Pollution can certainly be reduced, but if you were serious about decreasing our footprint on the planet, you’d advocate reducing population before you advocated stricter emissions laws. I suggest you either broaden the list of enemies to the environment by adding ‘untenable/irresponsible population’, or otherwise rewording the Environment statement so that it doesn’t single-out emissions/pollution.
The Economic Justice portion should be stricken from the manifesto completely. Why? Equality is never going to happen, ever. It’s a romantic idea, but it can only come with communism (also a romantic idea), and communism fails in practice. What you should replace Economic Justice with is something like ‘Equal Opportunities for All’ with regard to education/jobs/advancement. That would indicate that you’re pro-fairness and not pro-pipedream, which is currently the case (when you seek vaguely-defined ‘justice’, a noble aim that is impossible to attain).
On the Equal Rights portion, kudos! I couldn’t have said it better myself! Ditto Election Reform. Pat yourselves on the back.
The A+ Education statement needs work. The biggest problem with it is that it advocates ‘better funding’. I don’t know what ‘better funding’ is. Your readers probably don’t, either. If ‘better funding’ is federal/state/local money to support innovative charter schools, then I would say I support ‘better funding’. If, by ‘better funding’, you mean more funding, then I would say you’re absolutely wrong. Throwing money at a poorly-designed, antiquated system is money wasted. The biggest issue today with primary education is that we don’t really have free choice. There is a Soviet-style government monopoly on education (tax money for schools only goes to government-administered schools). Our public schools, unable to thrive in a competitive environment, fail to innovate and fail to educate our children up to the level at which they could be. The future of education, the way we can improve our children’s education, is to make our primary education system function like our thriving higher-education system (which, I might add, is the envy of the world). If government money supported the best-performing schools instead of only government-run schools, our children (and our economy) would be much better-off. I attended Bellevue High School and the UW, and had an AMAZING, SUPERIOR education (100% in public schools). Most pupils in public institutions are not so lucky–I’m the exception to the rule, and I know it.
My last critique is that there is nothing on there about liberties. Rights, yes, but not liberties. Our freedom from undue regulation is what makes our country so great and so productive. Government shouldn’t stand in the way of any of us. In fact, government’s only reason for existence is to 1) arbitrate between people when one is being wronged (ensuring fairness with a justice system), 2) to maintain order, and 3) to build things that we might not build on our own, like roads, or a national defense. Because the group’s manifesto seems so liberal (definitions of liberal include favors political philosophy of progress, reform, protection of civil liberties; and a broad array of related ideas of government that consider individual liberty to be the most important political goal) you should surely include something in there about freedom from undue regulation, essentially favoring no government action unless it’s absolutely necessary to protect fairness/maintain order/provide something that we wouldn’t on our own.
I’d love it if any or all of this could somehow make it into the Issues page. Reflect on it, at least. Remember, for every thoughtful letter you receive, 100 have come and gone thinking the same, yet wrote you nothing.
In 1990, soon after the publication of The Satanic Verses, a Pakistani film was released in which [author Salman] Rushdie was depicted plotting to cause the downfall of Pakistan by opening a chain of casinos and discos in the country. The film was popular with Pakistani audiences, and it “presents Rushdie as a Rambo-like figure pursued by four Pakistani guerrillas.”
Rushdie called the film “a distorted, incompetent piece of trash.” The film was a massive hit in Pakistan, but went virtually unnoticed in the West. In Rushdie’s favorite part of the movie, his character tortures a Pakistani fighter by reading aloud his book, The Satanic Verses.
Salman Rushdie has reported that he still receives a “sort of Valentine’s card” from Iran each year on 14 February letting him know the country has not forgotten the vow to kill him.
The [Charlston, SC] chapter of Habitat for Humanity would not let the Secular Humanists volunteer to build houses wearing T-shirts that said “Non Prophet Organization.”
The t-shirt stunt was too polemical, I admit (just like Affirmative-Action Bakesales), but quite funny nonetheless.
“…the ranks of atheists are growing. The American Religious Identification Survey, a major study released last month, found that those who claimed ‘no religion’ were the only demographic group that grew in all 50 states in the last 18 years. Nationally, they nearly doubled, to 15 percent in 2008 from 8 percent in 1990. In South Carolina, they more than tripled, to 10 percent from 3 percent.”
John Adams is regarded as one of the most important Founding Fathers of the United States of America. Before becoming the second President of the United States, John Adams served as the Vice-President under President George Washington. Prior to that, John Adams was a signer of the Declaration of Independence as a delegate from Massachusetts.
Founding-father John Adams was a Unitarian (but raised a Congregationalist) who rejected orthodox Christian beliefs, including the divinity of Christ and the far-fetched ‘trinity’. He valued religion in general because he believed it restrained “human passions” such as “avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry.” Like other Founders who leaned toward deism or agnosticism, Adams thought religion was important not because it was true but because it helped keep the common people in line.
In his youth, Adams’ father urged him to become a minister, but Adams refused, considering the practice of law to be a more noble calling. Although he once referred to himself as a “church going animal,” Adams’ view of religion overall was rather ambivalent: He recognized the abuses, large and small, that religious belief lends itself to, but he also believed that religion could be a force for good in individual lives and in society at large. His extensive reading (especially in the classics), led him to believe that this view applied not only to Christianity, but to all religions.
Adams was aware of (and wary of) the risks, such as persecution of minorities and the temptation to wage holy wars, that an established religion poses. Nonetheless, he believed that religion, by uniting and morally guiding the people, had a role in public life.
Adams was a champion of reason because he was objective in his thoughts on religion, which allowed him to be critical of religion’s flaws, and at the same time, he was tolerant of believers. He was reasonable, but was not one-sided or militant. For this we should thank him, as this post-Enlightenment luminary has set a fantastic example for all of us to follow.
Because I’m neither famous nor prolific, I revel in small victories and nods from others. Reading the following comment from a random Seattle Times commenter made me smile, not due to its waxing of my vanity, but because he described me in a way that I constantly strive to be defined as:
Holy cow, Cameron. This is doubtlessly the most reasoned, considered, and worthwhile comment I have seen attached to any ST article. Good work. [...] I look forward to reading more of your comments.
I think he just called me reasonable, and that’s the one of the highest honors I could ever strive for, up there next to qualities like honesty, selflessness, or being valuable. That’s what I want to see more of (reason). I’m trying to be my own change.
On the internet, most discussion/commentary is very juvenile, largely due to the anonymous nature of the platform. I strive to inject reason into any argument.
What do you strive to define yourself as? What change do you want to make?
This guy lays out personal responsibility, rationality, and purpose like no others. The Meaning of Life, summed up in a few words:
I believe that people are basically good–except when they’re not. In those regrettable and rare cases, those poor souls are relegated to my memory and are promptly forgotten. They’re dead to me.
This Just in: High Taxes Plus High Unionization Correlates to Joblessness. Who would’ve thought!?
3 of the 6 states with the HIGHEST unemployment (California, Oregon, and Rhode Island) have both high marginal income tax rates AND high union representation. Michigan has high unionization but moderate marginal income tax rates, and the Carolinas have high marginal income taxes, but low unionization rates.
Among the 6 states with the LOWEST jobless rates, 4 have low unionization rates and no state income tax or modest marginal rates and a fifth (Nebraska) has average income tax rates and low unionization. The exception is Iowa, which has average unionization rates (13%) and high marginal income taxes (8.98%).
Numbers don’t lie. Recessions seem to be worse on employment in states with high unionization and high income taxes because it is costlier for businesses to keep employees on the payroll when revenues slow their growth or fall. A lesson for Oregon, perhaps? (Oregon almost always leads the country in unemployment during recessions–look at their numbers in the early/mid 1970′s or 1982 and you’ll see what I’m talking about.)
One of the most endearing and enviable characteristic of the modern gentleman is his ability to stay cool under pressure. Regardless of whatever demanding situation a gentleman finds himself, whether he’s bluffing in a high stakes euchre game, lowballing used car sales men, fudging his tax returns, faking his own death, remaining stoic and silent during intense police interrogations, or landing planes after the pilot has had a stroke, the gentleman’s mastery at remaining unflappable and graceful in times of tremendous stress is indeed what keeps him not only incredibly successful, but also, in some cases, alive.
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