Jobs (watch the hands!)

I spend 5 minutes on Forbes talking with my hands; Hopefully, this was an aberration and not the start of some new, full body, spasmodic tic.

click for video:


Nice tie onthat fat bastard, but the profile . . . UGH!

I defy anyone to hear a word I say — the hands just mesmerize. That, combined with the sweater, make for a deadly pair of distractions . . .

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  1. Dan Weber commented on Feb 3

    I was a bull before I read cult of the bear, and now I’m totally with you on this one. However, this is a new concept I haven’t heard anything about yet that might catch on as we enter this recession, S&P Hybrid Index Funds, Where it’s an index fund hedged by the VIX options … just food for thought.

  2. piggington commented on Feb 4

    Heh heh… don’t worry, the “Economic Diary” covered up most of the hand flailing… :-)

  3. Mark commented on Feb 4


    It is not “the sweater”. It is “The Sweater”. Please reinforce the branding strategy we have agreed upon by capitalization in all future references. Thank you.

    Signed, Mark McCormack
    “The Sweater” Marketing Group LLC

  4. rich commented on Feb 4

    I’d burn that tie….sorry.

  5. jason commented on Feb 4

    Well, it can’t be easy when you’re used to being filmed behind a desk, or from the shoulders up.

  6. Emmanuel commented on Feb 4

    I didn’t even notice…you’re much too vain, BR. It’s the message that matters. In that respect, you were on cue.

  7. trader75 commented on Feb 4

    Didn’t notice the hands… but you touch on an interesting point. Could it not be argued that Television itself is a crappy medium for communicating abstract information?

    As a guy who gave up cable seven years ago, my view is clearly biased. But the logic seems straightforward.

    The best presentations are the ones that are clear, concise and on point. The more extraneous information that can be weeded out, the better. When you are getting your information from a TV show, the level of extraneous information could hardly be higher. The facial expressions of the interviewer, the interviewee, the clothes, the lighting, the set, the hoo-ah graphics… it’s all one big distraction from the quality and content of the actual stuff that’s being communicated.

    In the case of talking heads and cheerleader shills, this visual effluvia serves as a useful smokescreen. (I suspect that if CNBC were distilled down to its factual core with all the bells and whistles and yada yada taken out, 12 hours worth of programming could be packed into a thirty minutes.)

    But when people actually have interesting things to say and subtle points to make–as you usually do–ALL those externalities become distracting. The moving hands are just a single point of it.

    I think this trend of video-on-the-web is perhaps a bad idea. Bandwidth capability lets us do it, but just because we can do it doesn’t mean we should. There is a lot to be said for presentations without all the bells and whistles and distractions, i.e. static presentations without the whiz-bang-boom of video.

    Video still has its place–I still have a bigass television set in my living room, for the sole purpose of watching movies–but in terms of communicating ideas, TV is 95% hand waving.

  8. KirkH commented on Feb 5

    It’d be nice if video was used to show data instead of The Sweater. Audio is helpful because certain points can be emphasized vocally without the need for an extra sentence or paragraph.

    I’m hopeful that business shows of the future will be better at represnting data visually with smart people debating as the soundtrack.

    That said, maybe clothes do speak to the audience. Tucker Carlson’s bow tie has me convinced he’s an a-hole.

  9. calmo commented on Feb 5

    The sweater vs The suit.
    Now I’m not going to saw one off about what an appalling exhibit this is of yet another triumph of style over substance.
    There are just too many crumbs sticking to that old beater sweater that shows you just don’t care.
    And even if you resort to a tie underneath that bulging thing, it’s not the same. It just screams: SEE HOW I’M SUFFERING IN THIS GIG? WHERE ARE MY SLIPPERS?
    No. Definitely you go nowhere without the suit. People just switch to Uncle RITZ mode as soon as they see it. Better to chew a wad of gum and go bare chested. ( Maybe with a huge stogie and dark sunglasses.)

    Of course if Bernanke shows up in shorts and sandals next month, this could change everything.

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