August 26, 2014 — The elephant and the squirrel in their very own home

Dear L*,

It’s good to hear that your computer is fixed! Next comes the washing machine, I hope the problem with it can be handled as well. Here, you can call the maintenance guy who would do it for 15 dollars or more, depending on what it would cost to repair in terms of equipment, time, and effort.

I just got out of a long meeting. The sort of meetings which typically take me 20 minutes, but this time I spent an hour and a half trying to persuade a non-complying doctor about why he should agree with the pathway decided by upper management and not another. He is, frankly, hard to break. He simply does not believe in the department and its digital presence as is. To him, the IT department and their vision of the website is very weak. So after ten minutes of the session, he organized all my papers back together and clarified that he does not like the approach. I had to listen to his relentless criticism (which was most of the times valid). I also congratulated him on his excellent thoughts and debate, “you are right, you are very right doctor. Now, let us think then of solutions.” But all I got was a stubborn response right before a piercing phased out look. He wasn’t listening, he just wanted me to listen to his banter. But, I won in the end. I thought I should agree with everything and then tell him that it would be a pity if everyone else had their sites up except for his division and that it would be better to work on his suggestions as well as the proposed subject of the meeting, in parallel. He agreed. Only then could I start the usual explanation that takes a mere 20 minutes, sometimes less.

There is also a health program here, that is especially tailored for executives that are too stressed from their current career lifestyle. I kept wondering how silly and shallow the idea is. Instead of finding a solution to the main stressor, why are we treating the social symptoms of modernist capitalist society? Why is one creating an expensive program that treats the symptoms of a job, then expect the employee to work more hours to pay for a service to relieve him from daily stress?

I am amazed at the lack of critical thinking around me. Most people cannot see farther than the immediate system. Next to the word “impossible”, “common sense” is one of the most dangerous words in the vocabulary. It is “common sense” that which creates such deafening and mind-numbing structures of confined zombies. But human beings crave the numbness to forget what and who they really are, we are everything and we are nothing. Following guidelines, duck-speak, fitting in, the process it takes to become a well-respected and dedicated worker bee, the ritualization of modern day management, consequently, becomes a mere form of meditation.

Oh, you just sent an sms!

How I wish to be with you in our very own macrocosm, the special world of the elephant and the squirrel..

P

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