Archive for the 'immigrants' Category

Welcome to Episode 42 of HatRadio! with my guest, the inimitable, Guidy Mamann. The show is sponsored by Gryfe Philanthropic Solutions. 

To start the showoff, I spent a few minutes speaking about the Jewish people - a sort of 'did you know'. I discussed an outward approach that Jews take to doing good in the world. Beginning the 40 second mark, you'll get some insight into the Jewish community's work with the homeless and around the globe through Ve'ahavta (Ve'ahavta.org), a local non-profit established to encourage all people to play a role in tikun olam - repairing the world. Similarly, you'll be privy to Israel's work in many countries suffering from disasters, regardless of whether they are friendly to the Jewish state or not. Have a listen. Think this through and challenge any stereotypes you might have about Jews. Feel free to ask questions at avrum@hatradio.ca.

 

If you are friends with a person who is type A, you won't be surprised by my buddy, Guidy's Mamann, someone who is uber-effusive and enjoys life to its fullest. The show starts off with a spirited discussion about Guidy's upbringing. We talked about his family's emigration from Morocco to Toronto. Guidy was 3. At the 24:50 mark, listen to the hilarious story of his parent's arrival and their discovery of 'the very different' Ashkenazi synagogue, and frozen chickens instead of live ones.

Guidy discovered the challenges of immigration, early on in life, something that served him well in his career.

(Listen too, for the motorcycle story that encouraged Guidy to peruse law...he was 15....the cops....no ownership....and a judge yelling at his poor Mom.)

At 31:50 hear a spirited story about Guidy's first high-profile case as an immigration lawyer, for an Ahmadi fellow fleeing Pakistan about to get deported. Guidy shares his memories of how this fellow wanted to get his award of bravery from the police before he was sent back. What? An award of bravery? Yes and a donut shop is involved. Have a listen. It's a fantastic moment in Guidy's early career, a time when he figured out how to use the media, and understood that judges don't want to be seen as the bad guys when in the spotlight. 

Throughout the show, Guidy, shares poignant and sometimes stirring memories including one about the death of his sister, an experience that changed his life. At 1:22:24 my old friend talks about his sweet sibling and describes her death as tantamount to getting hit in the back of your head with a bat. 

At 1:36:00 we hear tidbits about his many trips including one to Costa Rica with his daughter, where they scouted for monkeys and tarantulas. Keep on listening and discover a terrible incident with his 7-pound dog who was attacked viciously by a pit-bull in Tel-Aviv. There was Guidy holding onto the Pitbull’s throat trying desperately to get his much beloved dog out of its mouth. He asked me, "Avrum I don't know if you've ever had your hand in a pit-bull's mouth....". I said, not that I remember. It's a crazy-ass story, but that's Guidy. 

Guidy is a lover of Israel. He is an 'unabashed Zionist'.  At around the 1:05:00 mark of the show, he discusses his trip to Israel with his Harley, for the country's 70th birthday. He said, if you want to feel like a rock star, ship your bike over to Israel and ride up and down the country with your biker buddies. I might. 

And Guidy is a huge family man, and loving husband to his wife, Monica. He describes the blessing of his marriage to her as winning powerball. He has four girls, three of whom are triplets. I love the wood piling story, at 1:34:00, where he taught his little ones a valuable lesson about accomplishing something that seems like it can't get done. 

And I believe that is what lies at Guidy's essence - the pursuit of conquering what appears to be the impossible. You find this approach in how he and Monica raise their brood, how he runs his law firm, and now, how he determines what building to purchase, usually one that appears to be dilapidated to others.

Guidy said, "I can see past the pain'. 

At the end of the show, (1:46:10) Guidy sums up his beliefs and approach to life: "I tell the lawyers in my office they've gotta believe in the impossible....I tell them, you can't eliminate all possibilities of success....you gotta leave God a place to land the helicopter....you gotta give him the opportunity to spin some magic....and if you don't try there's no way he can land the sucker and hit the mark...so just give him a little space and you never know what's going to happen."   

Episode 42 of HatRadio! is exciting as hell as I was interviewing a storyteller who lives every day, every moment, to its fullest. I was thoroughly delighted to spend our time together and learn more about this unique fellow and being inspired by his guts, determination and pursuit of the impossible.

Hopefully you will love the show. Let me know. Please subscribe at hatradio.ca/subscribe .  Thank you! HatRadio! The show that schmoozes.   

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Thank you to Howard Pasternack for his post-production work, as well as David Nefesh for the HatRadio! song. I'm grateful.

Credit for music in commercial:
"Slow Burn" by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

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