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You’re Sucking the Life Out of Me

Someone will need to help me with the particulars since I don’t celebrate Christmas, but at what point in the tale do the three wise men commence beating the hell out of each other? Do they use the frankensence or is on the way back from commemorating the birth of the person some consider the messiah?

If the attempt at humor is bleak, that’s only because the mood matches and there are times not even the most erstwhile clown can fake the smile as he entertains the crowd. These endless internecine squabbles (more the one of which I precipitated if not happily joined) are tiring. And utterly pointless.

What all of us seem to forget is this is not the real world. The real estate blogs – the topics we discuss, the stances we take – are only connected ancillarily to reality. Few in the general public give a damn about a thing that we discuss. Few agents not plugged understand the topics.

I have to say that I was shocked! (shocked!) when I learned that Russell Shaw had burned a bridge. I’m sure this will have a devastating impact on his scores-of-sales-a-year real estate practice. In fact, I feel so bad about it that I personally will be collecting gift cards Russell can use throughout the coming year. (Please note, Russell wishes you to use his actual first name – the “W” stands for Jonathan Dalton, so have the cards and gift cheques filled out appropriately.)

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At our best, we’re a collective voice heard by very few. At our worst, we’re out of control children throwing toys at each other in the Toddlers’ Room while the world goes on around us.

And at the end of the day, none of this has anything to do with closing a transaction. I don’t know about you, but for me that’s the sole focus these days … what can I do to close transactions at a rate higher than this year, which in itself was the most prolific year of my career.

Yes, this was personal. I’ve seen and survived highly personal attacks in the not-so-distant past, tempted to strike back only to realize there’s nothing in it except for the fight and the desperate cry for attention. And it was in that attack that I realized just how petty all of this really can be.

Bottom line – I don’t want your attention. I don’t need your attention. If you’re sending me a referral, wonderful. Outside of that, whether you read me or don’t read me or like me or don’t like me or respect me or don’t respect me doesn’t mean a thing outside of the fact I’m a delicate flower and I bruise easily.

My job is to help people buy and sell real estate. It’s what I do. More and more, the collective that is the real estate blogging world is sucking the life out of me and making it increasingly challenging to do that.

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I sell real estate. What exactly is it that you do?

Written By

Jonathan Dalton is a Realtor with RE/MAX Desert Showcase in Peoria, Arizona and is the author of the All Phoenix Real Estate blog as well as a half-dozen neighborhood sites. His partner, Tobey, is a somewhat rotund beagle who sleeps 21 hours a day.



  1. Barry Cunningham

    December 26, 2008 at 7:18 pm

    if this get’s through..let me be the first to say Amen..and Amen again!

    “And at the end of the day, none of this has anything to do with closing a transaction. I don’t know about you, but for me that’s the sole focus these days”

    It’s obvious that some are WAY more intent on doing something other than actually selling real estate.

    There is no way you could spend the amount of time that some do on such trivial BS and have any way to be successful in actually selling real estate.

    I have jhad my battles here but I could care less who get what from whom. If it helps someone move inventory than it Russell, Jay or even Ramblin, Gamblin Willie…whoever or whatever that is.

    My argument here with some was SOLELY is reference to the methodology of making money selling real estate.

    Why would anyone care about sponsor consideration. It’s a waste of fight.

    But that’s just my opinion.

  2. Bob

    December 26, 2008 at 10:58 pm

    Barry, you’re not just sucking up so you can win the commenter package are you? 😉

  3. Barry Cunningham

    December 26, 2008 at 11:26 pm

    @ Bob…darn..I been found out!!!! Heck, I’m not proud..I’m a regular Xavier Hollander! 🙂

  4. Ines

    December 27, 2008 at 1:31 am

    One word for you Jonathan – “cupholders” 😀

  5. Ken Brand

    December 27, 2008 at 7:25 am

    Nice piece Barry.

    As you’ve shared, it’s wise to keep your eye on the prize, but man it’s hard sometimes.


  6. Jay Thompson

    December 27, 2008 at 9:29 am

    Sometimes it scares me that I find myself agreeing more and more often with Barry. 😉

    Well stated Jonathan. I like to write and that is part of why I blog. But would I spend nearly as much time writing and reading blogs if I didn’t need to sell more real estate? Hell no. To sell real estate is why I blog.

    Oh, I’ll still blog when I get wealthy enough to not sell real estate (and I will get to that point). You’ll be able to find me on where I may write once a month or so about catching big ass Redfish.

    So I blog to ultimately move to the beach and do little more than catch fish.

    All this petty BS does absolutely nothing to advance that goal.

  7. Barry Cunningham

    December 27, 2008 at 12:12 pm


    All I have ever wanted was to foster change in real estate. The more that agents become proficient the better my chances are for increasing it has led me to many battles with agents. But it’s always about fostering change in real estate.

    Sponsorship and advertising is a part of doing business and I applaud both you and the people here at AG for also fostering change in that arena as well.

    I personally feel that the prevalent thought that advertising is bad is absolutely ludicrous! Beyond ludicrous.

    I am a “for profit” business. My websites do not end in .org!

    I am a CAPITALIST and it’s the only reason I have ever been involved in real estate.

    What I have been reading on so many blogs these days is so anti-profit.

    So see we have always been on the same side..that is of making money. You for your boat and fishing…and I for that oceanfront penthouse that has my name on it!

  8. Russell Shaw

    December 28, 2008 at 11:55 am

    Thank you to Jonathan for the inspiration for my “burned a bridge” artwork.

    Now: back to our regularly scheduled programming.

  9. Kris Berg

    December 28, 2008 at 10:04 pm

    Oh, for Pete’s sake. I have been blissfully blog-free for the better part of a week, and now I am feeling a bit out of the loop. And saddened. For me, I have much bigger fish to fry. But since we are on the subject…

    JD – Excellent post, as always. Russell – You really should learn to speak your mind. So hard to read between the lines. 🙂 Barry – Stop scaring me with your logic.

    Now I am off to return the gift from my Grandmother. I fear her intentions were less than honorable, and in the name of transparency, I couldn’t possibly keep it. I would be obligated to write and say nice things about her and call her on a more frequent basis. It smells of blood money, and I refuse to compromise my integrity over a covered casserole dish.

    Oh, and in case I haven’t mentioned it lately, my Grandmother and CorningWare rock! You should have at least one of both!

    (I also heart Diverse Solutions, but I suppose that is off-topic.)

    At any rate, I hope you all had a merry Christmas/Hannukah/Festivus or just a little down time with your families. Somehow I think that is a much bigger issue.

  10. Jonathan Dalton

    December 29, 2008 at 11:02 am

    Russell – had a hunch. I’m only thankful you were able to work through the tears to put together the graphic.

    Kris – as long as you’ve come to understand the error of your ways.

    Although, this may not have been an error because of one basic fact. YOU collective, not just you, Kris) ARE A BLOGGER, NOT A JOURNALIST! Blogs are by their very nature editorial commentary at best. Any notion of objective presentation is laughable.

    But what would I know. It’s not as if I have two-plus decades of actual journalism experience.


  11. Paula Henry

    December 29, 2008 at 10:27 pm

    Jonathan –

    Well, at least you can hope to capture some of the business Russell will be losing over his burning bridge escapade.

    I do agree about the attention – don’t want it, don’t need it. Blogging is all about the clients we hope to reach, so we can sell more real estate – that’s what I do!

  12. Vicki Moore

    January 6, 2009 at 6:29 pm

    Still – I say – you all should have been busy with an audit. Then none of this would have happened.

    I do celebrate Christmas – sort of – and I don’t know anything about the wise men fighting.

    And another thing – there’s a story in marketing – can’t say if it’s true. Could be one of those internet hoaxes. But isn’t it the case that the guy in number two position always bashes the guy in number one? You know, like Pepsi always advertises how much better it is than Coke, but Coke sells a gazillion more.

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