It is 5:56 AM. I haven’t been to the gym in the while as my body is just tired: it is tired from karate, from endless appointments, from visitors and from stress at work and tired from two young children of mine. Instead of waking up at 4:00 AM as I usually do I just want to sleep in. Then I wake up and my body is still tired and I do not have any energy. Hopefully with a little bit of rest this trend will change.
I’ve just looked at the calendar and noticed that for the first time in months we have no plans this weekend and I intend to keep it that way. I need a recharge. I see it is also Labor Day which means a three day weekend! This weekend the only activities I’d like to do are gardening, cleaning the cars and going to karate class.
Time for a few random thoughts. With the internet and smart phones, downloadable books and YouTube I find myself continually wanting to learn more. One piece of media leads to another, which leads to yet another. My friend mentions Rilke and so does a book I’m reading so I read Rilke. I watch Extraordinary Tales on Netflix and that has me reading Edgar Allen Poe. I listen to a piece of music that recites East Coker and so now I must read and understand more about that poem and T.S. Elliot. Everything I learn increases the momentum to continue reading, discovering and learning and it all becomes very exciting.
But I’ve also found that there are very few people with whom one can discuss this type of thing. In this society almost every discussion will end up revolving or mentioning sports.
Juvenal said “Give them bread and circuses.” We learn this and are amazed at how primitive people used to be a few thousand years ago. It has occurred to me that sports are our circuses of today. Similarly, my teacher told the class in eighth grade that ancient Romans honored sports heroes more than war heroes and I remember being very surprised! I then realized that we also do the same today. Most people would consider ourselves much more advanced than ancient Romans. But if we strip out the technology are we really? People today would scoff at the worship of ancient Gods and consider places like the Temple of Jupiter relics of a superstitious people; then they would go to their own temple of the seventh day, charismatic, harvest angel of the Nazarene (Alabama Synod).
Just as Romans enjoyed their circuses, elevated their sports heroes, and worshiped at temples, people today worship sports, elevate its heroes above all others and devoutly attend temples of fraud, fear, greed, imagination and poetry. It is my opinion that outside of technology, humanity simply hasn’t advanced very much these past two thousand years. There was tribal warfare back then and there is tribal warfare now; political systems became corrupted then and our political systems are corrupt now; kings and despots ruled vast territories back then and kings and despots rule vast territories now. The Romans built Hadrian’s wall, the Chinese the Great Wall and now Trump wants to build a Mexican wall. It is quite depressing to realize this truth when you’re fed propaganda your entire life leading one to believe we’ve reached a golden age of civilization.
That is enough of that topic; let’s move on to corporate America. We’ll start with language that seems to be unique to business people.
- “Hi There” – I’ve noticed more than a few people begining their e-mails with “Hi There,” and it is only addressed to me. My first inclination is to let them know my name is not “There.” My second instinct is to e-mail them back with “Hi Over There” or “Hey You.” I find this very annoying, flippant, and makes me not want to help them.
- Piggyback – Business people cannot stop using the term piggyback. The word ‘piggy’ should only be used on a farm, never in formal business conversation. Business people consider themselves VSP (Very Serious People) and except for tech, still dress in VSC (Very Serious Clothes). But when they use the term “piggy” in their VSC and during their VSC (Very Serious Conversation/Clothes) it shatters the VSI (Very Serious Image) they are trying to create! Piggy is simply not a Very Serious Word and should be avoided.
- If you’re an Executive (VSP) or aspire to be one, then it is critical you only use one or two initials at the end of e-mails. Furthermore, strip out all politeness and only write one or two sentences (do not even say “hi” or any type of word that would imply friendship or friendliness)
Check the database for decreasing synergistic trends in the core competency.
In this case GR would be George Robinson. If he was Vice President or above he might also choose to just use his first initial which brings an extra level of seriousness and importance to it.
Well, the household is awake which means my post must end. The time is 6:46 AM, the weather is foggy.
Current company specific annoyances:
- “Please revert with any queries or concerns.” – Our billing team must be out of India. The names are all American and the English looks perfect except for this phrase which is always used no matter who is responding. I’ve thought about using it when I respond to them just so a manager might take notice and fix it, but so far have not.
- “Please listen to this message as our menu options have changed.” – This is the message I get when calling the support team. The menu options have not changed in the past five years. Luckily I know what buttons to press and do not need to listen to this message.