Jake Gets Whatever He Wants

You may not know this, but while there are a whole host of things that Jake Wallach dislikes, there is virtually nothing that he outright hates. He’s very careful with that word “hate”. Hating things takes time and energy away from the activities that make life enjoyable for him. Things like watching great movies, listening to Bob Dylan and sharing in a good “neen”.

On rare occasions, I’ll catch Jake getting upset about something. He won’t make a scene and he’ll usually even begin by pretending that nothing is wrong. However, in a small group of friends or the privacy of our apartment, I’ve caught Jake expressing frustration and often I’ve ask him the follow up question “Do you hate this?” He’ll take a beat and then say “no” and then proceed to tell me several positive things about the situation.

I have no such self control. No such innate positivity. Jake makes me want to be a better person, in part, because I know he’d never tell me I was anything less than great to begin with.

Dont’ worry, I’m willing to share him. Go ahead, spend some time with Jake. And when you do, try something out: give him whatever he wants. He’ll hate it. He has no ambition for power. He doesn’t even want to be the deciding vote. He just wants the people around him to be happy and successful and that’s why he’s the perfect man for the job.

With this in mind, we have an ongoing bit where we collectively say “Jake always gets what he wants” and then instantly and unanimously agree to whatever Jake decides. It only works because he’s impervious to the ego that should come with people blindly following his decisions. He considers everyone’s opinions and, as often as not, he’ll do something that he doesn’t want to do because he thinks that more of us would enjoy it. The man doesn’t really even like pepperoni on his pizza yet I’ve heard him suggest it more than a dozen times because it’s the crowd favorite. It’s both frustrating and inspiring to me every time he does it.

I hope that our bit becomes a reality. I hope that Jake always does get what he wants. He’d begrudgingly use that power to inspire us all to be more positive and selfless people like him.