the beginnings of wisdom.

I wish, right now, to rant about the South. Folks get touchy about characterizations of the South as an intellectual backwater, full of inbred Bible-thumping rednecks who like to burn crosses on weekends. And I'll be the first to stand up and say that yes, it's a lot more complicated than that. But to the people who claim that the South has moved into modernity--occasionally removing the Confederate flag from government symbols even if, 130 years later, they still can't bring themselves to say "Civil War" instead of "War of Northern Aggression", not only electing blacks to public office but convicting white people for killing them, and a host of other signs of progress--I would like to point out that the state's school superintendent wants to rename "evolution" to "biological changes over time". This is supposedly to make life easier for teachers in conservative areas where people object to evolution.

The South has some funny ideas about "progress". Don't even get me started on fundamentalism. At least they only lynch people occasionally now, and sometimes even charge the perpetrators.

Work pissed me off today, because I kind of missed a deadline. Except that the deadline was set spur-of-the-moment yesterday, just to have a deadline. I took a walk and realized that I don't really care when the thing gets done, and beyond a sense of craftsmanship, any kind of emotional investment in my job is really a waste of my energy. Let other people have spasms about it--perhaps they get paid well enough to do so, but I don't and I don't expect I will be. Everything needs to be done yesterday by the time it's given to me anyway. I need to take people less seriously, and not be bothered by the fact that the only feedback I usually get about how well I'm doing my job is "Yeah, it'd be nice if you got stuff done a little faster" and "Well, I thought you'd figure it out". As I told the receptionist, this job pisses me off much, much less than any previous job, but it still pisses me off. I think on Monday I will take steps towards fixing that, by putting reminders up in my cubicle that people won't like:

Claims Of Urgency Can Be Safely Ignored.

Let Somebody Else Stress Out About It.

It Doesn't Really Matter.

Not quite as pithy as Demotivators, of course. They don't have the stupid motivational posters on the walls, thankfully, but they do put them on awards sometimes. I hate motivational posters. It's this insipid All Praise The Company thing...I don't know what it used to be like, but in the world I've grown up in, companies demand loyalty with the almost explicit understanding that it will not be reciprocated. This has gotten me off again on the subject of freedom, but that's tomorrow's entry.