The Unsinkable brian cork™

Brian Patrick Cork is living the Authentic Life

look at me Now

March10

When I was much younger, I used my voice, charisma and power to leverage influence (and, I was also dating the Raiderettes; all of them. That also seemed cool and worthwhile). I raised a lot of money for companies that have changed the world, and I’ve walked with men that fuel those organizations with heady vision. In truth, however, much of what I attempted to accomplish was for my own design.

God clearly has a sense of humor because he gave me (and trusts me) with two daughters. And, I’ll be damned if they will ever be cheerleaders.

Today I use my powers for good to help other people make better decisions. This gives me broad influence in education, politics and business. And, I strive to work, intently, every day, to be a good example for my daughters.

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

setting Examples as records

January4

A lot of people read this Blog daily. More and more readers find themselves outside of the United States. And, this particular post focuses on two sports that are not broadly followed globally – American football and baseball. Another element takes into consideration the emerging reality that printed media is forgoing sports.

By the time most of you read this post on Monday (I’m writing it on Sunday and relishing the potential of uncertainty), the story will have been told, and history will be what it is.

So, unless you happened to be watching NFL football yesterday, most people around the world may never hear about this story; and, it could well be doomed as a footnote. But, it will always be a terrific example of great character, culture and credentials.

The story coming out of  Metaire, Louisiana (although it will play-out in Carolina this afternoon) isn’t particularly big – other than, perhaps, it’s ramifications in terms of how we can define character in our culture – oh, and from a sports history stand point.

Heading into (tomorrow’s) game against the Carolina Panthers, after a terrific season with his hearty and ferocious crew of New Orleans Saints, Drew Brees has completed 363 of 514 passes this season for 4,388 yards – a completion percentage of 70.6. That is, hands-down, the best completion percentage recorded in NFL history.

It’s significant if you can appreciate effort and skill behind such an accomplishment – and, if you care about football.

Look… The reason I like this particular moment in history is because Brees says he hopes to approach his chance to keep the NFL’s completion percentage record much like Boston Red Sox legend Ted Williams did  hitting .400 back in 1941.

I’m, admittedly still bothered by what happened last week when the Indianapolis Colts pulled Peyton manning in the 3rd Quarter. You can read about that here: winning Matters to good Sports.

NOTE: These records are cast in stone once the season is completed. So, Brees knows he could comfortably set a new record by sitting out. But, the better story is that he apparently wants to play as much as head coach Sean Payton will let him. So… For context, and as of the writing of this post, the official NFL passing completion percentage record is currently 70.55 percent, set by Cincinnati’s Ken Anderson in 1982. I was in college at Radford University then, and I recall my Dad calling me after a football game just to talk about what a leader Anderson was. “He seems to set an example as much as records”, said my Dad.

The 13-2 Saints have clinched the NFC’s top seed, so their starters may not play much at Carolina on Sunday. This is another business decision that I understand, but can’t comprehend.

The example here is Brees’ competitive spirit. But, you need to know that Brees wears No. 9 in honor of Ted Williams, who could have hit .400 by sitting out his last game in 1941. But, Williams played instead, and wound up hitting .406.

By the way… Aside from being one of the finest Baseball players in American history, and a Naval Aviator during world War II and the Korean Conflict (he was John Glenn’s Wingman), Williams was an avid sport fisherman. He hosted a television show about fishing and was inducted into the IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame. Renowned NBC sportscaster Bob Costas, reflecting on Williams unparalleled success as ball player, wingman, and fisherman, once asked Williams if he realized he was in real life the type of American hero John Wayne sought to portray in his movies.

Replied Williams, “Yeah, I know.”

UPDATE: Brees sat out of the game Sunday and opted for some meaningless media soundbites. So, it’s my opinion that he’ll need to doff any jersey with Number nine (9) on it. Or, at least stop comparing himself to Ted Williams in that context.

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

dads and Daughters: example

January29

The following is a note from Drew Tilghman.  He puts together a Blog titled The Sojournaler.

This was in response to my Blog Post The Dark Monkey.

“…thanks for posting so transparently about your daughter, Haley Anne. I have two daughters, nine and seven years old. Just before your blog was posted, I opened up gmail accounts for both of my daughters. I did so because my older daughter has a friend in her school who has one, and my daughter wanted to be able to write emails back and forth with her. I thought it harmless enough and of course I had to do for my younger daughter what I was doing for my older daughter. I told them both that they could only email when I am with them and that they had to pass all “friends” by me. 

We spent the rest of that day, laying on my bed next to one another, emailing and chatting with one another. For the moment, it was a little bit of heaven. The three of us communicating in written words what we could have merely said to one another’s face. I had this deep unrest, though. I knew that they were not ready for the email accounts. So I told myself, and my girls, that there would be strict constraints here. I knew, deep down, that they were not ready.

Then I read your blog. Again, thanks for your transparency. The reality of this culture is a forceful one. Our daughters’ innocence and modesty are at stake. I have revoked my girls’ accounts, and amazingly they understand. It is good to have other fathers who are open and honest about their love for their children. We love so imperfectly, but we love. I hope and pray that our daughters will see that and trust that love. It is this love, ultimately, that will guide our daughters into a full maturity that we have so desperately prayed they will discover.” – Drew Tilghman

After a brief exchange, he followed up with:

“p.s. thanks for having the balls to say some of the things you say.”

Then, he hauls-off and challenges me to go one step further and talk/reveal/discuss/ example my thoughts and feelings.

…Dude.

Fine.

So…

I have been thinking about Drew’s response – and, the terrific feedback I get from so many others that follow my Blog; and, the things I do with my life.

I may well have the coolest job in the world.  I hang out all day telling men how to make better decisions in their lives.

I have this nagging suspicion that it’s all luck.  All the time.

And, for the record, I wait for something awful to happen.

Ever vigilant.

In any event, those that care about this Blog (approaching 30 visitors a day); listen to me speak; and, call me friend – understand that I am a Contrarian (not just from an investment point-of-view); a Jeffersonian /1; a Heterodox;  and, (possibly) annoyingly tortured and transparent.

I spend a lot of time on my Figgerin’ Spot sorting all of this out and (trying) making sense of my role and place in this world (often running and cycling endless miles). Remember, I am the guy that is distressed by evolving rules of grammar AND the global economy AND 2012 (and, my roll as a soccer coach for my Fusion Shockers!).

NOTE: I feel (okay… I am convinced) like this constant state of evaluation is critical in being an (successful) earthly father.

If you ask my own Haley Anne and Emma Jo what their Daddy does, they will likely say:

“Daddy helps people.”

ANTHER NOTE:  It works; I just tested it on Emma Jo to make sure (there were witnesses).

How cool is that (*how cliche is that*)?

I think the key here is transparency.

Haley Anne and Emma Jo have observed men approach me and thank me for helping; advising; and, being in their lives.

They also understand we live with abundance (and, being permitted to be grateful comes with a cost).

However, I also let them know that I struggle with the blackness in the hearts of men; my own penchant to work and train an enormous amount of hours; and, constant self evaluation.

My primary mission in life is to REFLECT and REPRESENT /2.

It’s never easy for me; I will never be good enough.

I don’t want this to be just about Faith.  Because God knows I struggle with that.

I am not perfect.  I certainly want to be.  I want to be ideally imperfect for them so they can watch me fight the good fight and learn to be true.  To be good citizens – and, objective.  

I try hard every hour of every day. 

They can stumble, and I am right there to right them with love and compassion – and, example.  

They see the trial and triumph etched in my face and my heart.  Some times my tears.

The point I want to make is that I believe my daughters observe my struggle; see the result; and understand that character is tested and forged every day.

God gave me daughters because he trusts me (or, perhaps not).  So, their role (today) is to remind me daily that I must earn their trust and faith.

By the way, God has a great sense of humor… In light of how I lived much of my life prior to being married, it’s a knee slapper he gave me daughters.

Maybe it’s a stretch in terms of relevancy – however, let’s thrown down “Redemption Song” by Bob Marley.

But, certainly “Open My Eyes” by Buckcherry (be open-minded about this song).  Here is the acoustic version. But, go download it on iTunes.

[youtube]999HKZRMLCk[/youtube]

daddys girlAnd, for balance go read Daddy’s Girl /3 by Garrison Keillor to your daughter – no matter her age.

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

_________________________

 

 

1/ There are many parallels with Ayn Rand’s Objectivism.

2/ See “Image”.

3/ I swear, this is my 4th favorite book.

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What’s All This About?

"What am I looking at?", you might wonder.

Lots of stuff.

Meanwhile, here, I discuss events, people and things in our world - and, my (hardly simplistic, albeit inarticulate) views around them.

You'll also learn things about, well, things, like people you need to know about, and information about companies you can't find anywhere else.

So, while I harangue the public in my not so gentle way, you will discover that I am fascinated by all things arcane, curious about those whom appear religious, love music, dabble in politics, loathe the media, value education, still think I am an athlete, and might offer a recipe.

All the while, striving mightily, and daily, to remain a prudent and optimistic gentleman - and, authentic.

brian cork by John Campbell





photos by John Campbell

 

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