Forget the soul; it’s the heart | VailDaily.com
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Forget the soul; it’s the heart

Baby Huey has been replaced by Tony Robbins’ little brother.You remember Tony Robbins, right? He’s the infamous best-selling self-help author, motivational speaker, and adviser to many world leaders, sports professionals and business people whose career was highlighted by playing an elevator scene with Jack Black in “Shallow Hal.”Unfortunately though, his little bro is lacking the family charisma in the image department.Yes, I was lucky enough to meet the New Kid on the Block last Tuesday night at the annual recognition banquet held for employees of Denver Resorts (formally Vail Resorts, which was formally Vail Associates, which was formally popular around these parts). OK, we didn’t actually shake hands or anything, but we exchanged a few glances here and there, him wondering who the hell I am and why I was there and me wondering pretty much the same thing about him.My wife was one of the many being recognized and rewarded for 20 years of loyalty to The Company. I was there to celebrate 21 years of living in Happy Valley without ever collecting a paycheck from said company.It’s the little things in life.Anyway, Rob “It’s a coincidence I live in Boulder” Katz appeared on stage to begin the evening’s entertainment. Looking like he’d just left the Sigma Chi house, he appeared willing to cut everyone in the room in on a great real estate deal along the Front Range with all the sincerity of a shampoo commercial touting orgasms. Katz immediately announced to the quickly quieted crowd that he had only been in his position for four weeks and we were all there to celebrate and recognize those that had been with the company for up to 40 years, therefore he handed the mike over to Bill Jensen and John Garnsey, both whom handled the duty with typical self-deprecating grace.Good decision.To be fair though, the guy has been with the Wall Street pod of The Company since 1991 (he apparently was hired straight out of the second grade), so at least he wasn’t taking himself too seriously at the moment. But my first impression from a guy who rarely stopped smiling yet looked incredibly uncomfortable on stage was not one of confidence.Baby Huey fired a few good men (and women) a few years back, and then went on to report record profits and a personal $8 million bonus. Katz announced the take-it-or-leave-it uprooting of 100 loyal families and then went on to report record profits.Besides a delayed bonus announcement, what has changed?We’ve spent the last decade or so reading about companies moving to resort areas claiming they can do their jobs from anywhere today because of modern communications and such concepts as Thomas Friedman’s “flattening of the world.” Hundreds of these companies are publicly traded (i.e. listed on the New York Stock Exchange), so I truly miss the difference here.”The soul is what happens on the mountain,” Katz said during an interview last week with the Daily.FYI, the “soul” is an esoteric myth based on ancient stupidstitions. If you want to discuss the “heart” of The Company, now then perhaps you’re on to something. The heart is the most vital organ of any living entity, and the farther away the other organs reside, the less efficient they perform and the shorter their longevity.Even I understand that concept.”It’s got some very nice mountain views,” he said referring to the new company headquarters in Broomfield.Could the guy be more patronizing?For those who think I’m being too hard on Katz, realize that sarcastic criticism is surely the least of his concerns. Besides, people in his position don’t reach that particular pinnacle by worrying about local commentaries. Katz is a big boy and I am sure he can handle a punditing-putz like me just fine.On a side note, the evening was highlighted by the old-fashioned, community-styled communication methods of George Hudspeth and his motivational jokes involving bar stool-sitting French women.Now there’s a secure man with no image issues.So only time will tell on the New Kid. In the meantime, the meat and potatoes of The Company will stay in the mountains, while perhaps the fresh vegetables can hang around the Front Range and take care of what they think is important.We have bigger issues to deal with here at home.Richard Carnes of Edwards writes a weekly column for the Daily. He can be reached at poor@vail.net


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