Friday, October 5, 2012

Chicago. Day Two. Joe Gibbs is cool.

Day two was beautiful. The fog lifted and the mist was gone. The sun was out all day bringing a light wind and a warm 70 degrees. Once the veil was lifted I saw the beautiful city I remembered from 10 years ago. Unfortunately, yesterday was the busiest day of the week, so I didn’t get to enjoy the weather much. I heard four different speakers/presentations. They varied from pedestrian business drivel to positively terrifying.

The terrifying one came from a guy who I see all the time on Squawk Box, CNBC and Fox Business News, I forget his name, Greg something or other. Anyway, he’s a very well connected financial guy with lots of friends at the Fed and elsewhere in Washington. He touched on quite a few heavy subjects like Monetary policy, the pending fiscal cliff coming January one, the impact of the election on the stock market and vice versa, and he ended with Geo-politics, specifically the Iran v. Israel battle upcoming over Iran’s pending nuclear capabilities. After listening to this guy I was ready to pack up the family, head to Montana and start working on that bomb shelter I’ve been putting off. Then Joe Gibbs walked in.

This 70 year old man, three-time Super Bowl winning coach, and then three-time Nascar championship car owner was a delight. He’s no professional speaker to be sure, his delivery was halting and at times repetitive. But, his sunny disposition and beaming smile was infectious. I could have listened to his Redskins stories all night, even though I truly loathe that franchise and always have. But I can’t not love Joe Gibbs. After his speech my partner Bland, a lifelong and truly obnoxious Redskin fan, the kind who is insufferable when they win and even more insufferable when they lose, insisted that I help him track down Joe through the throng of autograph seekers who had descended on him as he walked off the stage. Bland didn’t have a camera, you see, so my iPhone would do nicely. For several intensely embarrassing moments I felt like an evil combination of paparazzi and groupie, but Bland would not be denied. Once we cornered the poor guy, who couldn’t possibly have been nicer or more accommodating, even offering to let Bland wear his Super Bowl ring for the picture. I snapped the picture, posted it on Facebook and now Bland can die a happy man. He owes me…..BIG TIME.