mortgage creative writing challenge: The Mortgage Market and Pop Culture

By
Mortgage and Lending with Infinity Home Mortgage

     How do we explain the mortgage business to our clients?  What can we do to make the terms, processes, programs and personalities involved with our industry easier to understand? I believe the best way is to relate them to pop culture and celebrity. America has a love affair with pop culture. We are enthralled by any bit of celebrity gossip and delight in making heroes out of fictional characters. If we can find a way to relate our celebrity fascination with the mortgage and housing industry, true enlightenment is bound to occur.

     This relation to celebrity isn't just for our clients. We can use it as well. Sherlock Holmes explained to Dr. Watson that, after examining a crime scene, he then determined the intelligence of the perpetrator. This way, he could think like the criminal, allowing him to more quickly apprehend the evildoer. During the first conversation with our client, we need to determine their intelligence. This will allow us to better serve their needs by eliminating confusion. I've included a chart, utilizing the relation to celebrity theme. This will probably revolutionize the application taking process!

 Geena Davis - Superior intelligence. This client understands everything you tell them. She may actually be a step or two ahead of you. Speak with them as you would another mortgage professional. (I could have used Sharon Stone here, as she supposedly has an IQ of 150. However, when I looked for a picture, all I got were crotch shots from Basic Instinct. Ewww.)

 Julia Roberts - Average to above average intelligence. This client is fairly sharp. With training, they could do what you do. Simply explain what you're doing and why and this goes smoothly.

 Pamela Anderson - Below average intelligence. Speak slowly and don't use big words. Also, refrain from using initials or acronyms. (For example, Pam is lost once you get past DD or STD)

 Paris Hilton - Dumber than a bag of rocks. This will be a challenge from beginning to end. This client will be unable to answer questions, unaware of basic terms and completely incapable of following even simple directions. Also, expect them to be distracted by shiny things.                                                           

"I heard Pay Option ARM's were hot. Can you explain them to me?"                                                             

"I don't think I can"                                                                                                                        

"C'mon, that would be totally hot"                                                                                                 

"(Looking for something sharp to slit your wrists) OK but the Taco Bell dog has to go. You have 4 payment options (holding up 4 fingers)"                                                                                                             

"That watch is totally hot"                                                                                                                 

"Focus!  Now, you have 4 payment options. Pay the mortgage off in 15 years, pay it off in 30 years, Basically rent the place or pay a ridiculously low payment for a few years until you have to move your stuff into storage and yourself into a homeless shelter (unless you actually happen to be a skanky blond hotel heiress) What would you like to do?"                                                                                                                            

"My shoes are totally hot...What did you say?"                                                                               

(Mortgage professional has brain hemorrhage and slips happily from this scene into the sweet repose of death)

     One of the key benchmarks of any loan, the ability to repay, was tested this past week. Michael Jackson, who was days away from losing his Neverland Ranch at Public Auction struck a deal to refinance the 25 million he owed on it. Talk about a risky loan! What really is Wacko Jacko's earning potential? He hasn't made decent music in more than a decade. As talented as the man is, he's also crazier than an outhouse rat. I can see that lender getting payment in purple $1000 bills with Michael's picture on them.

     Am I the only human being on Earth who is long sick and tired of reality television? You know what we need more of on television? Sitcoms. Remember sitcoms? I'm just spit balling here but I think a sitcom involving a group of mortgage brokers would be extremely entertaining. Because they are just getting started and times are tough, instead of an office, they all live and work together in a big house with the bosses mom. Also, they would have a monkey. I don't know why and it doesn't matter. Monkeys are entertainment gold! Lastly, we need to get a movie personality to come to TV. That's been popular lately. We could have Christopher Walken play the boss! Ooh, we'll also get Estelle Getty to play his demented mother. She's done that before. A crazy mom, the Walken and a monkey is comic gold. It'll run at least 4 years.

                                                                                                 

     How can we relate some of the personalities involved in our business to the everyday person? How do we explain Angelo Mozilo and Ben Bernanke?

     I'll try Mozilo first, using an awards show as the basis for comparison. Who should win the award for making the most money while doing the least for it? Better put, who made the most money while doing the greatest harm? The nominees are:

  Angelo Mozilo - CEO of Countrywide and wearer of ugly bow-ties.

 

  Heather Mills - Ex-wife of former Beatle Paul McCartney and renowned gold-digger.

  Nickelback - Possibly the worst rock band of all time.

      Wow, this is a tough call. Nickelback truly is a terrible band. The sound of Chad Kroger's voice makes me insane with rage. On the flip side, according to record sales, they must be bringing joy to some people. My personal dislike aside, they only come in third.

     Heather Mills, the Yoko Ono of her generation, is absolutely an excellent choice for this award. The mere sight of her makes me insane with rage. Nobody likes her and she took Paul for about 50 million. Again, the flip side says Paul can afford it and she didn't cost anyone else any money so she comes in second. Which means, the award goes to:

     Angelo Mozilo. He touted the strength and stability of Countrywide even as he was selling his shares as fast as possible. Most of his sell-off occurred while CWD was above $40 per share. It's now hovering around $5. He's consistently been one of the highest paid CEO's in America. Finally, when the plane he piloted was out of gas and going to crash, he strapped on his golden parachute and jumped to safety. What a scumbag. His very existence makes me insane with rage.

     Ben Bernanke. Now, that's more difficult. It's probably too early to determine his effectiveness as Chairman of the Fed or what his legacy will be. I only have two general problems with him. First, his name - Bernanke. It sounds like a Venereal disease.                                                                                                            

"Doc, I've got this rash and an itching like you couldn't imagine"                                                            

"Well let me see....No wonder! That has to be the worst case of Bernanke I've ever seen. Put this ointment on three times a day and wear a condom next time!"                                                                                     

My second problem with the man is his total lack of humility. I understand someone had to follow Greenspan but I think the person following a legend should be more humble. When that guy replaced Slash in Guns and Roses, he at least had the good sense to wear a bucket on his head. If Bernanke gives his next press conference with a KFC bucket on his head, he'll have gone a long way toward earning my confidence and respect.    

                                                                                                                

     Enough of these villains and non-bucket wearing posers! Where have all the heroes gone? We need someone who is brave in the face of adversity, gets the job done and runs a tight ship. We need Captain James T. Kirk. I'm not even a Trekkie, but Kirk is the man. Sitting in the big chair, shooting at stuff, beating the hell out of people, fornicating with green chicks.                                                                                                  

Kirk: We need to get this man a mortgage!                                                                                        

Spock: Captain, he has a 506 mid score and we need to go stated. It simply is not logical.                        

Kirk: Don't ..tell..me..about..logic..Spock. Bones, we need a mortgage......for this man!                           

McCoy: Dammit Jim! I'm a doctor, not a New Century rep!    

Maybe Kirk isn't the man for the job. What about Indiana Jones? 

     The problem with the market now is mostly perception vs. reality.

 All the Chicken Little's that like to proclaim the sky is falling will tell you the market is like Britney Spears. A total mess. There have been too many huge mistakes that will take years to recover from, if at all. She's too up and down. There is no consistency in anything she does and there is simply no way to figure out what's coming next. When a glimmer of rationality shines through, it's quickly swallowed by an even deeper gloom. In this scenario, I'm not sure whether the current market condition is the K-Fed phase, the shaving her head phase or the completely neglecting her children phase. The point is that, whichever phase we're in, it's only going to continue to be a mess. If the Chicken Little's are right, we're all getting out of the car without any underwear on.  

 Now I think the market is like Angelina Jolie. There are absolutely highs and lows. Billy Bob Thornton, making out with her brother and wearing a vial of blood around her neck have been offset by Brad Pitt, her work as a goodwill ambassador and her motherhood. The contrasts in her personal life are staggering. Underneath all of that, however, is her steady, impressive body of work as an actress. That's the housing and mortgage market. There are highs and lows but, at the core, there's a solid base. People are always going to buy houses, real estate is still the best investment for the majority of folks and, if you have credit, a job and manage your debt, there will always be a mortgage for you at the best rate available.

     Lastly, to the ActiveRain judges who will be looking at this, I went out and got some opinions from some other well known judges just to see where I stood. Don't let there opinions sway yours. Thank you.

 Well! What did you guys think?

Randy: I gotta be honest. It just didn't do it for me dawg.

Paula: First I have to say that you look great. I just didn't think you connected to your audience.

Simon: Absolutely Terrible! I didn't understand anything you were trying to say and, quite frankly, I was bored to tears. A completely forgettable post.

     

***All opinions of the celebrities and personalities in this post is purely mine and for entertainment purposes only. I have no actual firsthand knowledge of any of them and so could be completely off base. Although, because my ears work, I am certain that Nickelback is terrible. I'm also reasonably sure that Paris Hilton is a moron.

 

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mortgage creative writing challenge
jason sardi is my idol
jennifer bukaty is pretty fantastic too
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Rainer
45,132
Scott Geary
Infinity Home Mortgage Company Inc - Allentown, PA
Your Pennsylvania Mortgage Source
WOW! The effect of late night mushrooms are absolutely amazing!!!! Lots of yucks (and an ewww too) on this one Sir William. Laughed out loud and often. Very entertaining.
Mar 27, 2008 09:03 AM #1
Ambassador
533,535
Jason Sardi
Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina - Charlotte, NC
Your Agent for Life
Oh my freaking lord!!!  Hilarious......I'll be back....
Mar 27, 2008 09:10 AM #2
Rainmaker
212,573
Jennifer Monroe
Savvy + Company Real Estate - Charlotte, NC
Real Estate REALTOR®/Broker in Beautiful Charlotte

Captain Kirk definitely IS the man!! This is f'ing hilarious!!! LOVE THOSE TAGS!!!!

Now where are my pictures Mr. Engleman??? 

Mar 27, 2008 09:23 AM #3
Rainer
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Kerry "Ski" Polakowski
Big Sky Properties of Montana - Kalispell, MT

OMG....I do believe you have just crushed the competition!

I am going to draw my sword now, but not to engage in battle. I just need something to tie the white flag to!

Thank you for the best humor I have had the privilege of relating to in many a day! Way too funny! :-))

Mar 28, 2008 03:43 AM #4
Rainer
10,307
Bill Engleman
Infinity Home Mortgage - Nesquehoning, PA
Schuylkill and Carbon Countynulls FHA & USDA Specialist

Scott - I'm glad you enjoyed it. In my proposed sitcom, you were the inspiration for the Christopher Walken character. I got a fever and the only prescription is more cowbell!

Jason - Thank you and I'll be here, unless I'm in the bathroom.

Jennifer - It's good to have a fan! It's also good to have a hamburger. I gave up red meat for Lent and, now that it's over, I can't get enough beef. God help any cows I pass on the way home.

Kerry - I haven't crushed the competition in anything since I played my 4 year old nephew in basketball. I totally kicked his ass! Thanks!

Mar 28, 2008 06:46 AM #5
Rainer
218,543
Lisa Friedman
Alliance Realtors - Bedminster, NJ
Central New Jersey Real Estate
Bill, Best Active Rain post I have EVER read.  My God, how long did that take you???
Mar 28, 2008 01:28 PM #6
Rainer
119,269
Rob Robinson- Lehigh Valley PA
Bertrum Settlements (Title & Abstract) - Allentown, PA

Holi crapoli dude.  Let's celebrate......

how about a Title Order / :^)

EXCELLENT !!!!!!!!

Mar 28, 2008 04:20 PM #7
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157,322
Sandra Cummings
William Raveis Real Estate - Guilford, CT
Real Estate Agent, Guilford Connecticut

ROFLAO.....You should post more often....Does any work get done in your office? : )

(Nothing like kissing up to the judges....I hear money works well too....)

 

 

Mar 29, 2008 02:44 AM #8
Rainer
224,606
Find a Notary Public needAnotary
QEC Internet Services - Long Beach, CA

Funny, funny funny but more true than not!  I enjoyed reading this post.

Mar 29, 2008 06:03 AM #9
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Eleanor Thorne
Equity Resources - Cary, NC
Equity Resources 919-649-5058

DUDE! The only thing you left out is Sarah Silverman F*ing Matt Daemon!  LOL! GREAT job!  Kept checking to see if it was members only!  A weiner in Sardi Style!

 

Mar 30, 2008 04:45 AM #10
Rainer
10,307
Bill Engleman
Infinity Home Mortgage - Nesquehoning, PA
Schuylkill and Carbon Countynulls FHA & USDA Specialist

Lisa - It took me about 2 hours to write. I had a general idea about the content all week and just let ideas seep into my brain. In hindsight, allowing that seeping of celebrity was, perhaps, not such a good idea. I think that both Paris and Britney must have settled in the same place next to my right ear since I had an earache on Saturday. Of course, I was out in the windy cold for about six hours so that might have had something to do with it. 

Rob - You ARE persistent. I'm going to reward that persistence by giving your character a part in my proposed sitcom. The visiting title agent, Rob Robinson, will be played by Jonathan Winters!

                                                                                                         

Sandra - We work hard! We also take frequent breaks to engage in mindless idiocy, childish antics and general tomfoolery.

Find a Notary Public - Even though I have neither a name nor a face for you, your comment was complimentary so I like you.

Eleanor- I was trying to be no worse than PG-13. To be compared to the great Jason Sardi, even in a small way, is the culmination of a life's dream.

Mar 31, 2008 03:53 AM #11
Rainmaker
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Joe Hayden Real Estate Team
RE/MAX Properties East - Louisville, KY
Your Louisville Real Estate Experts!
Yowzas...Honestly, Bill, I didn't think you had it in you...;)  A new training manual for rookies.
Apr 01, 2008 11:38 AM #12
Rainer
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Beth Forbes
The mortgage help you want when you need it. - Center Valley, PA
Your 24/7 loan officer
I laughed so hard I cried. Geary told me you'd posted some long, rambling post about celebrities that mentioned Nickleback. I popped on to read it and now my whole office thinks I'm nuts. I miss the mindless idiocy, childish antics but unfortunately the Tomfoolery still comes home every night.
Apr 02, 2008 04:56 AM #13
Rainer
10,307
Bill Engleman
Infinity Home Mortgage - Nesquehoning, PA
Schuylkill and Carbon Countynulls FHA & USDA Specialist

Joe - You have given me yet another fantastic idea to go along with my mortgage broker sitcom. A movie where future mortgage professionals are inspired by the writings of 2 seemingly idiotic current day mortgage brokers. Just like Bill and Ted inspired future generations with the music of their band Wyld Stallyns, Jason Sardi and I will do the same for future mortgage brokers. We'll pitch it to Miramax. They'll make anything into a movie.

Beth - Our whole office knows your nuts. This is mostly because you put up with the Tomfoolery that comes home every night. As Sardi has said on many, many occasions "Poor Beth"

Apr 02, 2008 06:02 AM #14
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Virginia Hepp - Mesquite NV REALTOR
Desert Gold Realty - Mesquite NV Homes For Sale - Mesquite, NV
Mesquite NV Homes and Neighborhoods - Search MLS
Best mortgage blog I have ever read in my life.  I vote for you!  Oh, we aren't voting?  Never mind.
Apr 02, 2008 12:16 PM #15
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James Jeter
Cardinal Financial Company, Limited Partnership - Carrollton, TX
James Jeter
This was great!  Loving every minute of it.
Apr 21, 2008 06:22 AM #16
Rainer
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Scott Geary
Infinity Home Mortgage Company Inc - Allentown, PA
Your Pennsylvania Mortgage Source

Cmon Billy, Billy Billy.........It's time for chicanery!!!

Nov 03, 2008 08:21 AM #17
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Jason Sardi
Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina - Charlotte, NC
Your Agent for Life

Chicanery works.  This guy has more than hints of robust comedic talent.

Nov 06, 2008 03:53 PM #18
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