13 years ago on the campus of Illinois State University, I came across then Governor Rod Blagojevich signing books on the quad. Thankfully I had my camera with me that day, grabbed a picture, and wrote down what happened.

Gov. "Hot Rod" Blagojevich @ Illinois State University

This is taken from my Flickr account 13 years ago:

I was walking to class and it looked like a press conference was being set up [on the quad]. So after class was done I came out and saw all these black Suburbans and guessed that it was some politician. I asked the guards what was going on, to which one replied “Nothing, just enjoying the weather.”

Then I saw a mob of people and recognized Hot Rod’s mop of hair. Although he doesn’t have my support, I probably should have stuck around longer so he could have signed one of my textbooks. I just wonder if the re-sale value would be higher with his signature in it.

The circus of Trump and his politics has now landed in Illinois. The man who went to jail for trying to sell Obama’s senate seat, is now a private citizen in a state currently governed by one of the people he spoke to about selling the senate seat to [J.B Pritzker].

I’m disappointed that Blagojevich was released. There are too many people in the prison system in this country, but I really do not like how white collar criminals are the ones being freed, especially one who shows no remorse or atonement. Guess we’ll just have to wait and read the inevitable book deal or docu-series to see who he’ll throw under the bus. Realistically, he’ll probably just work at Fox News as the token Democrat talking head for the 2020 election.

The Acquittal

It’s taken me two years, but I’ve almost finished watching Ken Burn’s The Vietnam War documentary. In the second to last episode, there’s a decent focus on Watergate and the congressional hearings. Watching it in 2020 while another president is undergoing something similar, I was surprised how it took months and months before the House approved articles of impeachment against President Nixon.

I don’t have much to say on the acquittal, but I’m writing my thoughts down so when my children ask me about it in the years ahead, I can remember exactly what I felt at the time.

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What I Learned from a Year of Making Demo Videos

The inspiration for most of my demo videos.

A year ago this month I was asked to make a video of a demo for a customer. It sounded easy. Flash forward a day and I still wasn’t happy with the product, but I had a deadline, so I handed it off to the customer.

Flash forward to June. I’m sitting in that customer’s offices with their new CEO and my Regional Vice President of sales. We didn’t have an agenda, but I’m asked to pull up the video. I warn the two of them that this was my first video so it’s rough, but we watch it together. We pause every minute or so and chat. It’s summer and it’s hot outside, but I’m hot under my collar having to hear my voice in front of others. The most sobering thing about being a sales engineer is having to hear your own voice. The meeting ends and self-critiques about my videos aside, it was positive. Two days later we landed the new logo customer, and they’re now off doing some really awesome things on Salesforce.

I learned a lot from the first vide, but now that I’ve done a baker’s dozen videos this year, I learned a few lessons that I want to share. Since Martin Scorsese is probably my favorite director, I’m going to reference him and his movies exclusively in this post.

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