Superstars and realized dreams...

Services for Real Estate Pros with Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina

This song ran through my skull.

Have you noticed the barren landscape around you?  Tumbleweeds roll across the office floor like another mortgage application that will never see the light of closure.  In April of 2006, our small firm here in Allentown had 19 folks working for the cause: that of making our lives better by helping make other lives easier.  Turn the clock to the common day, we are down to seven.  But damn, the seven of us are some of the most passionate survivors in this new frontier.  The Renaissance is here, amongst us.  I see it, hear it, believe it and continue to live it.

The cycle is in motion, probably always will be.  There's a ton of negativity, frustration, misguided perceptions, & the like... from the Real Estate Profession and those outside of it.  Yet I see something else, something that may be considered intangible if I couldn't reach out and touch it.

On another post, I made mention of how this industry can take a toll on somebody.  It really can.  I said that it makes me lose my smile now and again.  Yet, something kind of grew inside me the other day, from the inside out.  I guess that's the way things typically grow.  Call it the inspiration that comes with perspiration.

I looked around while nobody was watching as I was at the office.  All seven of us were there at the same time and I peeked at everyone individually, with a sly smile in my eyes.  Hai was studying mortgage products, Bill was trying to get someone into their new home, and Jane was counseling somebody on their credit.  Meanwhile, Scott was charming an underwriter, Brenda was following up on files as only she does, and Bruce was making friends with a guy who just a week before hated his guts because we couldn't close his loan in 4 days without an appraisal even being done.  Funny now, the guy loves Bruce.  And Bruce will close his loan.  I then looked down at my palms and saw the soft skin of innocent nostalgia. 

As a kid, I recall dancing in the backyard of my parents home in Clarion, Pennsylvania.  It was just a home to me, with my bed and my dreams.  My biggest worries at the time were that my brother Justin was a bit more spoiled than I, and I just wanted to be something great... to me.   I didn't fully realize my parents had bills to pay, real world concerns, or the loss of any innocence I was engulfed in at the time.  My mind never truly captured the essence of it all. 

Today, I find myself working with families similar to my own.  I see young kids with sparkles in their eyes, and parents who are working their tail off to make it a good life for them and their own.  My dream is right in front of me; to help others understand what I never understood.  Sometimes I look back at being a kid and think those simple moments of being tucked in at night and dancing in the back yard as if the world was mine... is what it's all about.  I look at anyone I'm working with the same.  My mind and soul looks at the past and sees that sort of stuff now and again.

Now is again.  I logged onto Active-Rain shortly after playing a wallflower and drifting down memory lane.  I read and watched.  I didn't comment on anything, I didn't post any of my typical crap.  I just read, just watched.  What I was reading blew my mind.  Do you folks really and truly realize the landscape of talent that is right here, right now?  Tumbleweeds may be strolling across our playing field but what I see is inspiring as can be.  Some of the smartest, most experienced, most ethical and thought provolking folks are among us. 

Right then I knew, I'm truly blessed to even play a small part in it.

I've spoken to many of you, worked with a few of you, exchanged punchlines and insights with a large bulk of you.   This is a Win/Win, it really is.  For the sake of our industry, the consumers who find us here are more informed by the moment.  They are getting to know us at their own leisure.  No pressure, just some damn solid information and insight into our own personalities.  Sure, there's the occasional bullshit, yet that's a part of life.   

Our exposure is pretty huge.  Imagine someone from some remote part of earth, whom you've never met, typing in a word on a search engine and your words are the first they come across.  As Marsha Brady would say, "That's dreamy."  There are superstars here, right here among us.  I'm proud of my profession because of many of you... and me.

Awhile back something happened that soured me on this whole experience.  I sniffled and thought, "Are we superstars and will dreams be realized?"  Since, I've looked around and tangibly experienced that many of us are and they certainly can.  As far as the rest of it, work above it and around it.  Get in its face if you have too.  That too, is a part of life.

I leave you with this.

But never lose the love...





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Gary Woltal
Keller Williams Realty - Flower Mound, TX
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth

Jason, you are so "intense" man. For one day, I wish we could exchange brains and I could see the world the way you see it, and you could have my laid back brain. Mine sees it from a peaceful state and yours sees it from a richly and colorfully emotional state. Hang in there, you are figuring it all out and what it means to you. I agree with you that on Active Rain you are surrounded by superstars. Don't discount that you are not contributing to that mix. I share with you also the love of all the tunes you find. Keep them coming. It is a great way to express yourself without words. Music very much allows us to connect with you.

Aug 30, 2008 05:15 AM #1
Jennifer Monroe
Savvy + Company Real Estate - Charlotte, NC
Real Estate REALTOR®/Broker in Beautiful Charlotte

You are unmatched in the Superstar category sweetie. I used to be the most passionate person I had ever encountered, and now... I am barely visible in your dust. Your emotion pours through your words and overlays even the simplist ideas. To be so richly expressive is every writer's dream. It... and you... are mine.


Aug 30, 2008 05:37 AM #2
Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman
Century 21 Liberty Homes - Mililani, HI

You and Jennifer have such talent as writers and remind me of my younger days. Ah, the gift of memory and sharp wit to put into words and share with the world. Most importantly...the gift shared through the miles :)

Aug 30, 2008 05:40 AM #3
Jo-Anne Smith
Oakville, ON


This is an absolutely beautiful post....beautifully written with feeling and intensity and very stirring. I often feel that AR is like a giant lifeboat and that we're all floating in it. Yep, it's manned with so many superstars that not only help one another, but all of those who come across it.


Aug 30, 2008 06:55 AM #4
Kevin O'Shea
Coldwell Banker - White Plains, NY
White Plains, NY Real Estate

Great post Jason.  Active Rain is a special place & I am proud to be part of it.

Thanks for the inspiration.  I tried to flag you for a feature and couldn't it went into error mode.

Take care.

Aug 30, 2008 07:07 AM #5
Fred Chamberlin
Guild Mortgage Co - Oak Harbor WA - Oak Harbor, WA
Oak Harbor/Whidbeynulls, #1 Experienced FHA Mortgage Consultant

Jason, I feel what you feel. Knowledge doesn't begin to show what is happening in our world. People that I know and respect are gone from the business but those that are left (by and large) are the ones that are passionate about making their career choice work. The pie is definitely smaller, but there are less and less of us cutting it into pieces.

Aug 30, 2008 07:53 AM #6
Russell Lewis
Realty Austin, Austin Texas Real Estate - Austin, TX

Great song and I love the BB King sampling...

"The cycle is in motion, probably always will be"

Yes my friend you are caught in the teeth of a very vicious part of the cycle. I went through the same thing in 1989 to 1991 (yes it was that long) when I made the brilliant choice to leave construction and enter real estate. We were in the death grip of the S&L crisis and there were between 1500 and 2000 foreclosures a month just in Austin and maye a couple of dozen buyres). It will pass and the survivors are like you, the tenacious, hard headed realist's who keep getting up every day and kicking it. I'm not sayin' it's easy, it's just what it is...

Onward through the Fog!

Aug 30, 2008 08:21 AM #7
Diane Aurit
LKN Realty, LLC - Mooresville, NC
Lake Norman Real Estate

Very nice Jason...we are survivors here on AR.  I learn something every time I visit AR which keeps me humble.  No matter how hard we work there is always more to learn and we have found a great group of people to learn from and lean on too.

Aug 30, 2008 09:32 AM #8
Jason Sardi
Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina - Charlotte, NC
Your Agent for Life

Gary - How do they say, "Be careful what you wish for."  None the less, I'd be willing to exchange skulls for a day.  It would no doubt be enlightening.

Jennifer - Have you listened to the lyrics to that song?  I hope to evolve from that.  And I will, but I'll take my own sweet time... as long as time has me.  MWA!

Sis - I want to know your younger days.  I know you now... and you're chalk full of inspiration and life!  It is the journey I'm interested in.  The rest usually takes care of itself.

Jo - Personally, I walk a fine line on what others think.  I've read your stuff though and if what you say in that comment is passionate, which I believe it is, that's as high as praise as I could ask for.  Thank you!  As far as the superstars here, the proof is in the pudding and I'm willing to bet that desert will be served at the end of the day. 

Kevin - I tried to flag a few posts in recent days, myself.  I had the same problem.  Thanks for thinking this is worthy, we'll let the public decide though.

Fred - One of these days you may break down and put it all out there.  I'm aware that you know your business, yet there is this thing that you hold back... perhaps rightfully so.  That written, I have a couple (two) mentors already... I want you to be my third.  No particular order. These days, I actually like to learn.

Russell - Damn, I like the way you think.  I wish I could be more profound in my response but that is all I have to say about that and you.  Wait... that's not all, as I slide my hair back beneath my ears I hear a common tone, it's about Rome.  It wasn't built in a day.  Yet, it can crumble pretty darn fast.  I want to avoid the latter and go after the former.  Here's the song, I've used it before...and you are invited to the wedding;-)

Diane - Exactly!  I was probably one of the first to join this forum and brushed it aside until many months later.  YOU are one of the many that have taught me so much.  I've learned a lot about Real Estate and Life by just sticking around. 


Aug 31, 2008 01:14 AM #9
Danny Thornton
R & D Art - Knoxville, TN
WordPress Guru

Jason, I said it before and will say it again. Pound for pound you are one of the best writers here. I could actually sense that I was in your office and that is what it is all about.

Aug 31, 2008 09:25 AM #10
Thesa Chambers
Fred Real Estate Group - Bend, OR
Principal Broker - Licensed in Oregon

Jason - you will survive this market and soar with the eagles and be the super star - because you have the integrity and desire to be the best you can be.

Aug 31, 2008 01:13 PM #11
Sandra Cummings
William Raveis Real Estate - Guilford, CT
Real Estate Agent, Guilford Connecticut

Jason - I love when you write like this. One for I understand it : -) but mostly because your passion comes shining through.

Sep 01, 2008 12:08 PM #12
Fred Chamberlin
Guild Mortgage Co - Oak Harbor WA - Oak Harbor, WA
Oak Harbor/Whidbeynulls, #1 Experienced FHA Mortgage Consultant

Jason, the only thing I can say, is I am honored to be so chosen. I know that this song, will never describe what you will be doing. As far as putting it all out there, I can think of no better mentor for that than you. We will be in touch.

Sep 01, 2008 04:28 PM #13
JL Boney, III
Coldwell Banker - Columbia, SC
Columbia, SC Real Estate

Keep up the good fight Jason. Take care.

Sep 03, 2008 02:17 AM #14
Susan Mangigian
RE/MAX Preferred, West Chester, PA, RS152252A - West Chester, PA
Chester & Delaware County Homes, Delaware and Ches

Jason, I am in awe of the raw power of your posts sometimes. This is one of those times.  I feel, as you do, that we are very lucky to be here in this time with these people.  It's a hard life right now but we will all get through it together. 

I didn't have the kind of childhood where I got to take too much for granted... I was in line at the grocery store with my mom once and saw her trying to decide what she didn't need because she didn't have enough money to pay for everything.  My mom worked so hard when I was a kid and so many things that my kids take for granted were a treat to us.  I think that's why I fear this market so much.  I don't ever want my sons to see that look on my face.  Which bill should I pay this month because I can't pay them all.  It's getting a little too close for comfort.  I think a lot of us don't get that look on our faces simply because we can just put it on a credit card and worry about it later.  Our parents didn't have that luxury.  And now, those credit cards are coming back to bite us in the ass.

I thank you and all of your co-workers for working so hard to get people mortgages.  No easy feat in today's climate.  You are a gem, Jason.  A very smart, hard working mortgage person that anyone would be lucky to have representing him/her.  xxoo  By the way, I have never before heard a song by the moody blues (to my knowledge anyway).  That one was very nice.


Sep 04, 2008 07:56 AM #15
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