Tea with a Titan: Conversations Steeped in Greatness |Achievement | Olympics | Olympians| Success | Athletes | Entrepreneurs | Actors | Authors | Philanthropy | Business | Artists
About This Show
Tea with a Titan is a weekly podcast during which seasoned interview-buff Mary-Jo Dionne speaks with those people who have one thing in common. The quest for authentic greatness. Be it entrepreneur, athlete, entertainer, artist, philanthropist, thought-leader, or difference maker, if the target is greatness -- even in the face of hurdles -- Mary-Jo will be having tea with them.
Most Recent Episode
Episode 037: Brent Johnson -- football legend (and all-round great guy)
5 days ago
What we cover: “You cannot synthetically produce passion.” – Brent Johnson Every once in a while, you have a conversation with someone who is legitimately hilarious. Legitimately insightful. And legitimately fascinating. And you want to bottle it and crack the formula and then multiply it and sell the patent. But since you can’t, instead you pop it onto the cyberwaves and you call it a podcast episode. Brent Johnson. There aren’t a lot of names in Vancouver that are more, or even as, synonymous with greatness, with leadership, and with humility than his. So of course it was my dream to get him to sit down and chat with me. And, because he’s as generous as they get, when I reached out to him, he responded in under two minutes with an all-caps ABSOLUTELY. Brent, just so you know: I am framing that email. Brent is about as respected an athlete as they come. The Vancouver Sun once said of Brent: “He is humble, polite and straight-shooting by nature. He was not a football player whose validation and self-worth were tied up in his job, or whose ego contained lopsided control over who he is.” As an 11-year key member of the CFL team The BC Lions, Brent has lots of shiny hardware to his name. He has two Grey Cup wins. He was presented with The CFL’s Most Outstanding Canadian Award. He’s been named a CFL All-Star more than once. He was the recipient of the CFL’s Most Outstanding Defensive Player Award. And, most recently, he was inducted into the BC Lions Ring of Honour, the highest honour they can give a player. But despite all of this, this is not a conversation about football. At least, not in the traditional sense. Of course it comes up – it’s the thread. But more than anything, this is a conversation about life. About vulnerability. About commitment. About what Brent identifies as “giving yourself over to something entirely.” It’s a conversation that is ripe with insights. He talks openly about what he sees as being his role as a dad when it comes to guiding the opportunities for his own young son. He talks openly about the loss of his mother, in a tragic car accident, when he was just 12-years-old, and how that event, in many ways, impacted him. He talks openly about the “if onlys” – those events in all of our lives that make us pause and take stock. And more than all of this, it’s a conversation about what it means to be passionate – what doe