Some Get It. Some Don’t
Went to the New York Football Giants Training Camp with my boys while on vacation. Amazing Day! The highlight for the boys was the autograph session. For me too. Two reasons: (1) The joy a parent experiences seeing their children at their happiest and (2) Seeing superstars who get it.
It is so easy when you become a successful superstar to forget what got you there. My next-door neighbor, Dick Mercer gave me some very sage career advice shortly after I graduated from Georgetown Law School. He said, “Timmy (he had known me since the age of 10), never forget, no one is a success unless an awful lot of people want you to be.”
The way the team sets it up is they create a gigantic square with all of the children standing behind iron barricades. (i.e. Think a boxing ring with all the children standing behind the ropes that square off the ring). The team send all the players from one position each day. Our day was the defensive backs. This meant Landon Collins, Janoris Jenkins (aka Jackrabbit), Eli Apple and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie!
Prior to the players coming out the PR people were doing their best to manage expectations. “Guys, Landon, Janoris and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie might have to leave early because they have meeting.” I knew what they were doing. In the event the players left they wanted to make excuses to manage their brands. No way all three players did not all have meetings at exactly the same time on the same day. Otherwise, the team would never have sent them out.
The madness exploded as the players walked into the squared circle! It was awesome. Children screaming players names at the top of their lungs, desperately trying to get them to come their way.
Jackrabbit started on one side, Landon on the third side and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie the last side. The lesser know players were sprinkled in between. While the children were there to see the superstars, they took no less pleasure securing the autographs from the other players.
What occurred over the next hour restored my faith in superstars. Over time many (but not all) of the lesser known players made early exits. None of the stars did. Jackrabbit, Landon, Janoris and Eli went to all four sides of the quartered off area and patiently signed every autograph. It was awesome to see!
So often, famous athletes and celebrities can blow off their fans with impunity. Congrats to the Giants superstar defensive backs. They are worthy of all the adulation they receive from the Giants faithful.
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