Wednesday, July 27, 2005

backlog blog

Charity
Last week, in Kyrie O'Connor's Chronicle blog MeMo, I read some comments she made about the ubiquitous ribbon magnets. While doing the link meander from comments to her post, I read a comment to the effect that we are awash in "philanthropic exhibitionism" these days.

Everyone wants to show how socially, patriotically and culturally worthy/conscious they are. I have to say, I rather like the concept of anonymous giving. That old "right hand not knowing what the left is doing" idea. Public grandstanding of human decency cheapens the whole thing.

Every corporation seems to want the world to know what a bunch of great guys they are because they give "this" much money to "these" causes. Target's walls are covered with graphics lauding their lavish philanthropy to public schools. Does this seem like advertising to anyone? Advertising using the poor, the sick and the victimized as launch pads to obtain a bigger market share?

Team player
I was in an interview once (not for the great job I just accepted, for pete's sake) and was asked if I would mind coming in and training for the job without pay, on my own time? I responded that this idea seemed highly irregular; usually companies (are required to) pay you while you train for a job. The interviewer hastily added that he didn't really mean it, but just wanted to know if I was a "team player." A test of sorts.

Doesn't this rationale open up the field for abuse? Like, "I see you haven't worked for a while and really need this job. So what do you think about giving me a blowjob?" "Oh, no, just joking—just wanted to see if you were a 'team player.'" Hmm.

While waiting for the above job interview to begin, I happened upon a dictionary. Sometimes a random lookup makes the time wasted in bad interviews all worthwhile. Here were the inspirations du jour:

    fairy shrimp n.
    Any of various transparent freshwater crustaceans of the order Anostraca that lack a carapace and characteristically swim upside-down.

    Of course, I couldn't resist the short queen connection. But what a whimsical name for a, decidedly unwhimsical species name, crustacean. Crustacean sounds like something that needs to be scraped off and soaked in antiseptic.

    magianism n.
    the business of being a magi. Which is the plural of the less wholesome sounding magus, defined as a magician or sorcerer.

    Which makes one wonder if Balthasar pulled that gold out from behind the Christchild's earlobe. You know, just a little magic trick for the tyke. Furthermore, what do you think Mary did with the gifts? Did she dab a little myrrh behind each ear before going to temple with Joseph? Rub some on Jesus' skinned knees? These are the questions that plague me.

Voicemail
Sometimes. I confess, I check my voicemail to excess. Especially when I've got a child out of the country or a sweet job offer in the offing. I'm sure it's just my imagination that after the sixth query in one day, the recorded voice sounds...annoyed. I half expect the recording to improvise: "no messages. stop pestering me. go make some damn friends so I'll have something to give you."

That's all for me. I'm done. If you combine bleary and groggy you get bloggy. I feel kind of bloggy right now.

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