I grew up in a family that promoted the idea of bringing something to the table, in other words if you showed up at someone’s house for dinner you contributed something to the meal. Whether it was a watermelon, an apple pie or simply intelligent conversation you were expected to be a contributor.
Being a contributor is, I suppose, a metaphor for life: is what you’re doing a net positive. I like what this Laird Hamilton guy www.lairdhamilton.com has carved out for himself. Obviously I don’t know him personally, but he’s been around for a long time, one of those guys who always pops up in an interesting article or unbelievable photo. He seems to have balanced the self promotion/narcissism thing quite well, which is to his credit as most self-promoters just end up looking like jerks.
On the other end of the spectrum you have the Glen Becks the Bill O’Rileys, the Limbaughs and every person who ever appeared on Celebrity Apprentice or Wife Swap. Unfortunately our system seems to reward the Becks far more than it does the Hamiltons.