“Find out what makes you different. Do more of it!” – Futurist Jim Carroll
Innovation comes from individuality; your creativity comes from not conforming. If you are different from other people, don’t worry about it – celebrate it!
That was my thought this morning, and I went off in search of a picture to fit the idea. While doing so, I came across this photo from an event I did in St. Louis last year — where, at the start, I explained to my audience that I was “not that Jim Carroll!” The picture seems to fit the theme!
Here’s the thing: oftentimes when I go to the MidWest, I need to explain to the audience that I’m not ‘the other Jim Carroll” – they might have Googled him. For close to 20 years, I have had a need to explain – for a time, I even had a “I’m not that Jim Carroll” page on my Web site, explaining. To this day, I still get visitors looking for Jim.
Jim Carroll was a New York City poet, author, punk rock singer with his namesake band, which included the iconic punk rock anthem, “People Who Died,” which today is a mainstay for people in the pain of loss.
Jim was also an addict. His book, The Basketball Diaries, captures the raw terror, pain and hopelessness of his addiction, but also the beauty in his difficult pathway to recovery.
Jim Carroll’s book became a movie of the same name, starring a young Leonardo Dicaprio. When the movie was released, I would often receive emails from young girls, who seem to have figured that I would be a pathway to get a message to Leonardo. I found it necessary to explain that I was not ‘that Jim Carroll.’ And his recovery from addiction was, and is to this day, an inspiration to those who struggle. I still get email from people in the midst of their own terror, who have read his book, and who think I am him. I explain I am not – but I respond carefully, knowing that my words have meaning.
Sadly, Jim died in 2009. I met him briefly once in Toronto. His story remains a powerful inspiration to me to this day.
The story of Jim has nothing to do really, with the quote – but certainly the pictures fit the concept of the idea! Be different!