I’ve gotten some compliments lately about the way I work with Millennials — that vague demographic term that (from my perspective) includes adults born since the advent of personal computing.
I like teaming up with these people, and they seem to like me. The ones I meet in professional contexts are smart, enthusiastic and fluent in a language of technology I had to acquire as a young adult. (Granted, I was playing with art and music in high school, not computer kits.)
In the world of startups, Millennials are frequently the founders and big thinkers of the companies I help. I like to see my experience inspire smart people with new ideas, and their insights form a virtuous circle — I often walk away with my synapses snapping.
But there are moments when I think, “I’m a grown-ass man! Why do I feel like I’m applying to Burger King?”
Mazel tov to The Other Matthew Rothenberg for a story in today’s New York Times that features a fetching photo and his views from high atop the Flickr digital-photo empire.
As my own social graph will tell you, the presence of two high-tech Matthew Rothenbergs has caused a bit of confusion at times and reminds me of the inconclusive negotiations my father had back in the dear, dead analog days of the early ’60s with The Other Jerome Rothenberg, an architect who also happened to write poetry on the side.
And while my wife Nancy Tobin remains at No. 1 in the Google sweepstakes, she’s in a similar pickle: For some reason, art attracts Nancy Tobins like poetry attracts Jerome Rothenbergs and Internet technology, Matthew Rothenbergs. She vies with a sculptor, a photo researcher, and a sound artist.
I’ve suggested to Nancy that they all team up and do a big “Nancy Tobin” show. In the same vein, my doppelgänger suggests “we go in 50/50 on something like whichmatthewrothenbergdoyouwant.com , put a line down the center, our clickable faces and bios on opposite sides of the page, and then pile on the google juice till it becomes the number one search result for our name. We’d be providing a valuable service to the world! (Well, the very small yet incredibly savvy portion of the world who is looking for a Matthew Rothenberg).”
I’m in … There can never be too many Matthew Rothenbergs!