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Winos & Flying Ovens

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UnReal Estate – Why Agentz Shud Proofrede:

Hi Everyone – I am traveling, so with your permission, I am re-posting a blog from one year ago with just a few changes. It had a lot of responses, and some things just bear repeating:

The MLS and the L.A. Times Real Estate pages should be on Oprah’s Reading List. Seriously. There are so many typos and outrageous remarks in the MLS that it makes for great leisure reading. The newspaper ads certainly add to the merriment. I love houses with features such as a “slimming pool” or a “crook’s kitchen,” especially if those features are in a “Post and Bean” house. And what could be more entertaining than a “barge yard” (for your barges of course) or a “wall of widows?” Thus, I have compiled some of my favorite typos. So take a moment to smile, fiends. (Uh, I meant “friends.”)

Would YOU Buy This House???

Large slitting room (Is this Tony Soprano’s house?)

House on Beautiful wok street (But what if I don’t cook?)

“Libary” with built in shivs (In all fairness, perhaps this is in a prison.)

Disclosure: Crack on back side (Relax, we all have one.)

Call lasting agent (It’s true, there aren’t many of us left!)

Oven flew in from Italy (Paid for with frequent flyer miles, no doubt.)

Built in wino bar (Is there a stool with my name on it?)

Lunch severed (One misplaced r and you’re dead.)

Snacks and drunks okay… (My sentiments exactly.)

Bang hard (Let’s just not go there).

Let’s Sell This Sucker

Seller moved but furniture strayed (In most states that’s grounds for divorce.)

Brick Drivaway (Mama Mia – Those bricks must have flown in from Italy with the oven.)

Seller in NY – Coming out soon (Okay, this was in West Hollywood…think about it.)

Plumbing needs motivation (Way too much information.)

Seller says Gas is a problem (His plumbing must “need motivation” also.)

Terrorist yard (Another head-scratcher.)

Pouter room (A place to go when the first payment is due)

Call Frist (Will the Senator filibuster for me?)

Beautiful terpentine tiles in shower (Note to self: Do Not Smoke in the Shower.)

Rear entry blocked off (Eat prunes already.)

Pieceful feeling (Especially when in the shiv room)

Seller can’t say no (Neither could my ex…hence the “ex.”)

Weird and Random

Rooster somewhere in the neighborhood, but not for long. (Need I say more?)

Screams reported at twilight open house were coyotes we think. (Or a rooster perhaps?)

The foundation bolted (But the house stayed???)

Grass fireplace starter (For a home on the tundra…)

Owner says dog likes the taste of people. (What are his thoughts on fresh rooster?)

Built-in smoker (Grandpa won’t leave.)

Strange glass windows (I’m too dumb to make this stuff up.)

Cemetery nearby (This guy really knows how to close the deal.)

Ass is (Seriously? …I mean SERIOUSLY?)

Agents to be split down the middle. (One screw up with a Tudor and suddenly you’re on the rack!)

No smaking please (But you deserve one upside your thick head.)

Close to Therapy, Rehab and Shopping (One of those choices is bound to work.)

Designer Don. (A decorating offer you can’t refuse!)

And in Case You Need Your Own Motivation:

Call then go. But call again if you can’t get in. Then try again. (Fool me once…fool me twice…)

Call for show times. No kids. Seller may be there and can’t handle anything less than four feet tall. (Hey Bozo – half the kids in Hollywood can probably afford to buy your dump!)

Seller says he’ll give dog to buyer. Check with city for past complaints. Cute dog. (Uh-huh.)

Does anyone want a noisy bird? (To feed to a “cute dog” maybe…)

Hysterical Home (Is it in the Hysterectomy Books?)

Recently bombed for fleas.  (That may have been overkill.)

Marina Del Ray houseboat w/ great living style. Ask about leaks and other issues. (Uh-huh…)

Biggest Sellers, So take Note:

No earthquake insurance. But this is a few miles from the San Andreas Fault so you’ll be fine. (Good to know…IF YOU’RE SUICIDAL!)

Voted Safest Neighborhood until last year. (So I take it the chalk outline has some significance?)

Driveway is shared, but other party doesn’t share too good. (That explains why the chalk outline is in the driveway.)

Neighbor on N. side is nasty. You’ve been warned. (Yes – I saw the driveway…)

And My Fave

Seller leaving state, Going to State of Denial. Kidding. It’s just a bad market.

Okay, so I know what you all are thinking: Los Angeles is not a state of mind…it’s a mindless state. But at least we are colorful and constipated. I mean consistent. Until next week, go in piece.

Comments include those made when first posted on April 4, 2009:

I wear several hats: My mink fedora real estate hat belongs to Sotheby’s International Realty on the world famous Sunset Strip. I’M not world famous, but I've garnered a few Top Producer credits along the way. I also wear a coonskin writer's cap with an arrow through it, having written a few novels and screenplays and scored a few awards there, too. (The arrow was from a tasteless critic.) My sequined turban is my thespian hat for my roles on stage, and in film and television, Dahling. You can check me out in all my infamy at LinkedIn, LAhomesite.com, SherlockOfHomes, IMDB or you can shoot arrows at my head via email. I can take it.

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42 Comments

42 Comments

  1. John Kalinowski

    April 3, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    Gwen- I laughed so hard I almost “split down the middle”. Your comments are hilarious! Thanks for the Friday afternoon humor, though it is pretty sad what you can find in the MLS.

  2. Michelle DeRepentigny

    April 3, 2009 at 2:47 pm

    OMG “Terrorist yard (Another head-scratcher.)” – is that supposed to be Terraced yard?

    Infreakingcredible – Hey I’m going to use that in my next MLS description!

  3. Vicki Lloyd

    April 3, 2009 at 3:55 pm

    Oh my goodness! I laughed so hard I had tears running down my face & could hardly breathe!

    I know you didn’t make this up, but this collection is way funnier than I have seen in the MLS in 15 years!

  4. Gwen Banta

    April 3, 2009 at 4:05 pm

    Thank you, John, Michelle and Vicki! This was one of the most fun blogs to write. And believe me, I have plenty left over for a sequel. For someone who can never even remember where I park, I somehow manage to accumulate a lot of these in my vacant cranium. I think it’s because they are so funny, they’re unforgettable. I bet you’ll start noticing them more often now yourselves. It’s wonderful entertainment while working!

  5. Mike Sparr - Goomzee.com

    April 3, 2009 at 4:57 pm

    What a great way to end the week. Thanks!

  6. Norm Fisher

    April 3, 2009 at 8:36 pm

    My all time favorite is still, “Large dick, perfect for entertaining.”

  7. Elaine Reese

    April 4, 2009 at 7:38 am

    That was hilarious! Makes my goof of “large panty in kitchen” seem so mild.

  8. OCTeam

    April 4, 2009 at 10:54 am

    Hilarious. Who knew we would be in such an entertaining business. Can’t wait for the sequel!

  9. Dan Connolly

    April 4, 2009 at 9:32 pm

    I woke my wife up, I was laughing so hard! It’s not just the agents remarks, but your comments are also hysterical.

  10. Mack

    April 5, 2009 at 7:01 am

    Gwen~Thanks for the laugh. I can’t wait for the sequel.

  11. Missy Caulk

    April 5, 2009 at 9:09 am

    Hillarious….opps sounds like they could be on The Jay Leno show for newspaper ads.

  12. Cathy Nealand

    April 5, 2009 at 12:09 pm

    Gwen,thanks for sharing, I have not laughed this hard in a long time. And to Elaine-large panty in the kitchen belongs on Gwens list up at the top. I laghed as hard at that one as I did the list.

  13. Matt Stigliano

    April 5, 2009 at 6:18 pm

    Gwen – I swear I commented on this, but realized I commented on ActiveRain and not here. No matter where I commented, this is hilarious.

  14. Paula Henry

    April 6, 2009 at 7:13 am

    This is the funniest post I have ever read – saved in my favorites for those days when you just “need a good laugh”.

  15. Russell Shaw

    April 8, 2009 at 11:28 pm

    Gwen,

    I am now officially a fan of yours. I loved this. One I saw years ago – that my wife and I still repeat to each other, “Good for anyone who wants to live”.

  16. Paula Henry

    March 5, 2010 at 8:38 am

    Made my day………..again!

  17. Gwen Banta

    March 5, 2010 at 1:06 pm

    Thank you, Paula – again and again!

  18. Joe Loomer

    March 5, 2010 at 8:25 pm

    Ok, thanks Gwen. I thought I’d be fine having seen this one BEFORE!!

    One pair of shorts and pants later, plus a shirt in the wash because of the soda stain, and a dog that will no longer come anywhere near me, and I’m about done. I may – in fact – charge you for the new keyboard (had to get on my wife’s just to post this comment). I’ll let you slide for the monitor – it’s about four years old anyway.

    Oh, and the shared driveway thing may not be a big deal in LA LA land, but lemme tell you about deeded easements in Gawgah – just in case you’re in OUR neck of the woods and FAIL to ask someone that knows about this sort of thing !

    Navy Chief, Navy Pride

  19. Gwen Banta

    March 5, 2010 at 8:42 pm

    Joe, you are the third person today to tell me that “shared driveway” is fightin’ words in your neck ‘o the woods. One guy said they take the “ease” out of easement.

    I love your description of your reaction to my post, however, I will not be happy until you collapse onto the keyboard and get a permanent impression of letters mashed into your forehead. Then I’ll start calling you “Home Row.” You’re my inspiration!

  20. Houstonblogger

    March 6, 2010 at 1:22 am

    This is so awesome I cannot even pick a favorite. By the time I got to “screams reported at twilight open house….” I was rolling. Thanks for the laugh!!

  21. Dana Voelzke

    March 6, 2010 at 8:02 am

    I once had a client who would flip through all of the MLS listings each week and giggle at all of the typos. These are terriffic. Your point is right on!! The lack of proofreading in the MLS is out of control!

  22. Gwen Banta

    March 6, 2010 at 1:27 pm

    Dana, one of the best bloopers I have ever seen was one my partner spotted in our open house guide that said, “Live near the Hollywood “Bowel”!!!

  23. Gwen Banta

    March 6, 2010 at 2:08 pm

    Thank you, Houstonblogger! Yes, I live in a crazy but exciting city. Usually the screams at twilight open houses involve naked bodies in a swimming pool!

  24. Matt Stigliano

    March 8, 2010 at 10:48 am

    Gwen – You could probably just re-post this one each week and still be welcomed as a writer here at AgentGenius. It has so much quality content, I’m going to go back and read it again.

    Sad thing is that your posts are made great by bad things. Wish it was possible for you to run out of material.

  25. Gwen Banta

    March 8, 2010 at 11:06 am

    Thanks so much, Matt – your praise just made my day. I agree, I will probably never run out of material – thus is the human condition. However, isn’t it wonderful when we are able to laugh at ourselves? Some of the bloopers in my column have been my own or those of very respected colleagues. Flying fingers on a typewriter and the brain’s ability to see what one meant to say (rather than what is on the page) are the enemies of even the best brains. Thus, I laugh without judgment unless the error is egregious, or the agent is so obviously lazy about looking up a word that the misspelling is beyond excuses. Example: “house in colensack,” or “clotted cheese ceilings,” “pig-in-groove floors,” “new assfault,” and one of my faves: “hand rubbed basebroads.” Enjoy your week!

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Business Marketing

The neuroscience of respectful leadership – preventing professional disrespect

(BUSINESS MARKETING) Offices with toxic work environments are harmful to the employees, but where does that toxicity come from? A large percentage is disrespect

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disrespect in the workplace

If you have ever felt yourself being disrespected at work, or at least not getting the respect you feel you deserve, you are not alone. These actions can create a toxic work environment that don’t help anyone, but why does it happen and how can it be curbed? Well Gregg Ward has studied the subject and has an interesting take that we would like to share.

Gregg Ward is the Executive Director of the Center for Respectful Leadership, and the CEO of Gregg Ward Group. Gregg has been helping leaders develop their respectful leadership, emotional intelligence, and executive presence skills for over 25 years; working with Fortune 100 and 500 organizations around the world to inspire respect and leadership, emphasizing the measurable, bottom-line benefits they bring to leaders and their organizations. Gregg is the author of the best-selling, award-winning business book The Respectful Leader, as well as the Human Resources and Management handbook Bad Behavior, People Problems, and Sticky Situations.

By Gregg Ward – Executive Director of The Center for Respectful Leadership

Starting in the late 1990’s and for the next 20 years, researchers at Georgetown University and Arizona State University surveyed American employees to determine the amount of incivility, disrespect and rudeness they were experiencing at work. Shockingly, 98% of those surveyed said they had experienced it, and 99% said they had witnessed it. What’s even more troubling is the lasting impact of disrespect on individuals and organizational cultures.

Most of us assume that respect and disrespect are things we think about rationally. Rational thought occurs in the cognitive areas of our brains, within what scientists refer to as “the neocortex.” But recent findings in neuroscience indicate that our responses to rudeness, incivility and disrespect are much more emotional than rational, and are rooted in the primitive parts of the brain, called the “reptilian brain.”

Imagine you’re in a meeting and your boss continuously interrupts you (a not uncommon experience for many), dismissing your ideas as unworkable. Even though you “think” you shouldn’t be bothered by this behavior, you actually experience it anyway on a basic emotional level, regardless of what you tell yourself. This is because your brain perceives these interruptions and dismissals as threats, and almost instantly sends a threat alert to your Amygdala (the center of the Limbic system) which in turn triggers the release of stress hormones into your system including Adrenaline and Cortisol (aka “the stress hormone”).

These hormones are part of the fight-flight-freeze response that all of us experience to some degree when we’re under threat. Researchers have found that increased levels of these hormones resulting from constant exposure in the workplace to even small micro-threats (like being constantly interrupted) can have significantly negative impacts on our health, well-being, productivity and even our ability to think creatively.

Research also shows that respect and disrespect are contagious. You’ll know this to be true if you’ve ever walked into a meeting after it’s started and immediately felt a sense of energetic enthusiasm or chilly iciness between the participants. You can sense that something’s up even though they haven’t said anything to you about what’s actually going on. This awareness is driven by our unconscious brains constantly seeking information to determine if we’re under threat, or not. This is simply the human condition and has nothing to do with us being too sensitive or politically correct. It is simply how we are.

Organizational leaders ignore our fundamental humanity at their peril. A “toxic” work culture, wherein many are experiencing disrespect, rudeness and incivility on a regular basis, can seriously impact performance, productivity and partnership.

In 2016 researchers published a scholarly paper that clearly highlights the negative impacts that disrespect and incivility can have on entire organizations including increased complaints, absenteeism, turnover, mistakes and bottom line performance metrics. If you’ve ever worked (or currently work) in such a toxic culture, you know how uncomfortable this is, and how much of a detriment it can be to your well being.

What can leaders do to ensure their organizational cultures are respectful and civil? First, leaders can set the tone themselves by consistently treating people with decency and respect. Practicing what is often referred to as “common courtesy” is a great way to start, by saying “please” and “thank you,” regularly; greeting people cordially; using “reflective or active” listening, and never raising a voice in anger or upset.

Another effective “respectful leadership” practice is to quickly “nip disrespect in the bud” whenever it arises; demonstrating to the rest of the team that being disrespectful won’t be allowed. At The Center for Respectful Leadership, we refer to these and other related practices as the “RespectfulDo’s,” and they are part of the global movement we call Embrace Respect.

Recent neuroscience is teaching us valuable lessons about our working selves – especially in regard to the power of respect and civility. The question is, will we listen to the research and deliberately act upon it, or stay unconscious and risk the fallout from a toxic culture?

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How to make sure your newly remote team stays productive

(BUSINESS MARKETING) The tide of change is rolling in and may never recede again, so managers should know how to handle the new normal, here’s some advice.

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managers new role

The Coronavirus pandemic has changed the way people work. Working from home is the new normal. It’s not only employees who have to think about how they perform, but managers have to learn new skills to keep their team engaged and efficient. I’ve worked on remote teams for over 6 years. Here are some things that have helped me.

Ask “What can I do to help you?”

I’ve worked with some great managers and some awful ones. The best ones had a collaborative attitude when discussing problems. Instead of laying blame, the question was “what can we do to correct this?” It takes a little longer to think in those terms if you’re not used to it, but it reduces stress. If you’re communicating through email or message apps, it pays to reread before hitting send. We’re all learning new skills in this new normal.

Make sure your employees have the technology they need

One of the companies I work for has specific programs they use and technology requirements. Before I was allowed to proceed through their final onboarding, they made sure that I could access their technology. If your team is working from home, they need to have the resources to be productive. It’s not just computers and software, but access to internet. One of my friends said that it took them over an hour to upload a 5-minute video to Facebook.

Define success; don’t micro-manage

As I’m writing this, Ask a Manager’s Alison Green posted a question about “what’s reasonable to expect from parents who are working from home. Just a reminder that managers may have to lower expectations from their team, not only for parents, but for everyone. I don’t have kids at home, but there are many distractions out of the ordinary. Managers have to accept that people aren’t going to be as productive in these not-so-normal-times. Identify priorities. Check in when you’re on a deadline. Find a balance between managing and micro-managing.

We’re all just trying to do the best we can

It doesn’t matter who you are or where you work, I think it’s safe to say that we’re all adapting to these crazy times. How managers handle their teams will set the tone for years to come. If you want to keep those employees who have been hard workers, you’re going to have to adjust to give them the benefit of the doubt.

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Business Marketing

Easy email signature builder quickly updates your info

(BUSINESS MARKETING) When’s the last time you updated your email signature? That long? You might want to look at just sign, a new, quick, and easy, email signature generator.

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just sign email

The last thing any of us are thinking about right now is email. While we’re all staying safer at home, though, it’s a good time to think about all the little things that need our attention, but typically get neglected: clearing out the email inbox, unsubscribing from things no longer relevant, and updating our email signatures. Why the email signature?

Oftentimes, we change emails when we change jobs and forget to change our signatures to reflect our new address. The same is true with social media; if we happen to change jobs, due to our own choice or by necessity thanks to the virus, we may need to update our social media profiles accordingly, especially if the new job suddenly makes this a requirement.

One of the fastest ways to update your email signature is with a generator. An email signature generator can help you quickly make a professional looking signature in about half the time it would take you to manually add each individual component.

Just Sign is one of the quickest options I’ve seen. This email signature generator is ultra simple, ultra easy, and ultra effective. It allows you to add clickable social links, a profile picture or logo, and all relevant contact information. It also allows you to choose a color scheme and tailor the formatting a bit to your preferences. As you begin to add options to your signature, you can see a preview of what the final product will look like in the right-hand panel.

Just Sign welcome

This allows you to make any necessary changes before downloading the finished product. When you have your signature perfected, simply click the purple “generate signature” button and you’re ready to go.

Just Sign is an easy, quick way to check another thing off your to-do list while we’re all at home. If you have already updated your signature, you might save this link for later use as it’s a good idea to revisit your signature a few times a year. Oftentimes, I revise mine simply to keep the attached picture updated. Have you updated your signature lately? Do you plan to? Let us know what you think of Just Sign.

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