Sunday, April 25, 2010

a brush with Camelot…..

Earlier this week, I was on a flight from Greensboro to Chicago.  I boarded the flight, got myself settled, and then heard my name called.  I was being upgraded to first class. 

One of the perks of flying a lot is that the airlines try to reward those people who use their services on a regular basis, and in my case, a frequent basis.

Heading up to first class, I knew the guy who was going to be sitting next to me.  He was Chris Kennedy, president of Merchandise Mart Properties, and son of the late Bobby Kennedy.large_tim-hagan-chris-kennedy-medical-mart

I’m usually pretty comfortable in most situations, but this was different.  He was a Kennedy, the closest thing we have in our country to a royal family.  What could I possibly have to offer in conversation with him?

Well, it turns out, quite a lot.  Totally inquisitive, he wanted to know everything, how I grew up, where I lived, what I did, even things I engineered.  His eyes locked in, never wavering, always engaged.

After being told I grew up on a turkey farm, he wanted to know if I thought turkeys could survive on his family’s island vacation retreat.

Talk about a guy totally comfortable in his own skin, Chris Kennedy is it.  I see a lot of people who land in successful situations through inheritance, who think of themselves as entitled and privileged.  I sensed none of that in him. 

At the end of the flight, he asked for my card and promised he would stay in touch.

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