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February 28, 2007

Motivate This!

My new column takes off from the misguided decision of one university to fire up its faculty and staff with a motivational speaker. It may be that $20,000 for ten speeches was actually a pretty good deal, given the usual rates. But you know who would have been cheaper? Matt Foley, "living in a van down by the river."

Usually I think of Chris Farley as a strangely talentless perfomer, but this bit seemed rather inspired.

See also "Dysfunction Junction, What's Your Function?" (my column from a year ago about the field of Oprah Studies).

Posted by smclemee at February 28, 2007 6:26 AM


Actually, as much as I enjoyed watching Matt Foley again, probably the best response to Steve Beck and the Southern Illinois University's motivation efforts would be these guys: Despair, Inc., inventor of the Demotivator posters and calendars. One of their classic uplifting products is a lovely, inspiring beach landscape with the caption: "If a pretty poster and a cute saying are all it takes to motivate you, you probably have a very easy job. The kind robots will be doing soon."

Check out their other inspirational jolts of truth ("Quality: The race for quality has no finish line- so technically, it's more like a death march") at www.despair.com

Posted by: book/daddy at February 28, 2007 10:46 AM

Talentless was kind of the joke, wasn't it? A kind of regular, bulk-order talentless.

Anyway, I didn't find that very funny, either.

Posted by: zbs at February 28, 2007 12:08 PM

That's one of the few old SNL clips that I actually do find funny. It's a fantastic bit: over the top, but in just the right amount, and still cutting after all these years.

Posted by: Ahistoricality at February 28, 2007 6:30 PM