Being Mr. Jones, Sha la la la la la la…

Doing business in Bablion in the 21st century often means working with younger generations. It keeps you young- if it doesn’t kill you by heart attack. There’s nothing like their naive enthusiasm, raw aspiration and the highest expectations.

You can sell them dreams, but they will sell them back to you. And, you will pay dearly and gladly for those second hand dreams.

They glitter like diamonds in the rough, these Romanian twenty somethings.

They want want to do big things though most don’t have much in terms of skills knowledge, or commitment. They want to be big big stars. But they don’t want to play the guitar all night- every night for ten to twenty years of wait and see.

Sometimes, I was Mr. Jones, Mr. Jones of the Counting Crows’ song, Mr. Jones.

Pass me a bottle, Mr. Jones
Believe in me
Help me believe in anything
Cause I want to be someone who believes
Mr. Jones and me tell each other fairy tales
and we stare at the beautiful women

Yes, Bucharest is more interesting than the typical routine and fare of the American middle class suburbs. And being Mr. Jones, that’s not so bad either.

But there’s the other side of the coin too.

I have never faced more emotional and intellectual challenge than mentoring Romanian twenty-somethings as young professionals. Without a doubly clever pitchfork, any hope or plan is self-delusion.

That reminds me, I need to do a little work on the pitchfork, tonight.



Thanks to, here’s the complete lyrics to the Counting Crow’s song, Mr. Jones:

Sha la la la la la la….. hmm, uh huh…

I was down at the New Amsterdam staring at this yellow-haired girl
Mr. Jones strikes up a conversation with a black-haired flamenco dancer
She dances while his father plays guitar
She’s suddenly beautiful
We all want something beautiful
Man I wish I was beautiful
So come dance this silence down through the mornin’
Sha la la la la la la la yeah.. uh huh, yeah…
Cut up, Maria! Show me some of that Spanish dancin’
yeah, but, Pass me a bottle, Mr. Jones
Believe in me
Help me believe in anything
‘Cause I wanna be someone who believes

Mr. Jones and me tell each other fairy tales
And we stare at the beautiful women
“She’s looking at you. Ah, no, no, she’s looking at me.”
Smiling in the bright lights
Coming through in stereo
When everybody loves you, you can never be lonely

Well, I’m gonna paint my picture
Paint myself in blue and red and black and gray
All of the beautiful colors are very very meaningful
Yeah, well, you know gray is my favorite color
I felt so symbolic yesterday
If I knew Picasso
I would buy myself a gray guitar and play

Mr. Jones and me look into the future
Yeah, we stare at the beautiful women
“She’s looking at you. I don’t think so. She’s looking at me.”
Standing in the spotlight
I bought myself a gray guitar
When everybody loves me, I’ll never be lonely
I’ll never be lonely
Son, I’m never gonna be lonely

I wanna be a lion
E-Everybody wants to pass as cats
We all wanna be big big stars, yeah, but we’ve got different reasons for that
Believe in me ’cause I don’t believe in anything
and I, I wanna be someone to believe, to believe, to believe,yeah

Mr. Jones and me stumbling through the barrio
Yeah we stare at the beautiful women
“She’s perfect for you, Man, there’s got to be somebody for me.”
I wanna be Bob Dylan
Mr. Jones wishes he was someone just a little more funky
When everybody loves you, oh, son, that’s just’ bout as funky as you can be

Mr. Jones and me staring at the video
When I look at the television, I wanna see me staring right back at me
We all wanna be big stars, but we don’t know why and we don’t know how
But when everybody loves me, I’ll be just’ bout as happy as I could be
Mr. Jones and me, we’re gonna be big stars.

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Stan Faryna
December 30, 2005
Bucharest, Romania

About Stan Faryna

Stan Faryna is the founder and co-founder of several technology, design and communication companies in the United States and Europe including Faryna & Associates, Inc., Halo Interactive, and others.

His political, scholarly, social and technical opinions have appeared in The Chicago Defender, Jurnalul National, The Washington Times, Sagar, Saptamana Financiara, Social Justice Review, and other publications.

Mr. Faryna is editor-in-chief of Black and Right (Praeger Press, 1996), a landmark collection of socio-political essays by important American thinkers including U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.


Copyright 1996 to 2008 by Stan Faryna.

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