There is a Siblinghood

Sheesh. I am soooooo tired of being gender-conscious with politically correct speech. I had an idea for a blog. Friend D just did a favor for Person C. D is all-around nice, helpful, upbeat, fun, smart, cuddly and a good friend. Person C – not so much. D did a BIG favor for C but I’d lay money down to say that had the positions been reversed – not so much. *grin* But this is NOT going to be about that. *laughing* I already got my point across. This was going to be about one of the reasons D said he was happy to oblige.

C laid claim to their mutual membership in the Clan of Geeks. Geekdom is indeed a clan. I’d love to be a geek. Really, I would. I know that typically geeks have difficult childhood and teenage years but then miraculously the rest of the world gets wise and appreciates them. Look – being a teenage girl who didn’t look like THE supermodel of those years was not so pleasant either. I didn’t grow up to be a geek, however. I have many fine qualities and talents (oh yes I do – don’t give me THAT look) but geekiness is not one of them. I hang out with geeks. Some of my best friends are geeks. *grin* I have a very very high geek-patience threshold. I WANTED to call this post: Geeks and the Women Who Love Them. How self-centered, right? It implies all Geeks are men. And that men are only loved by women. That would have been the implication. The true message was meant to be about ME. Of course it was – this is MY blog. I surrendered, however, to what I perceived as political correctness. No “Geeks and the Woman [sic] (yes Michael – I put that in for you. *laughing*) Who Loves Them”. Major hugs to Friend D.

I think I’m so fond of geeks and suffer such geek-envy because I am the daughter of an engineer. Oh yes, in their way engineers are EVERY BIT as geeky as computer geeks. Perhaps with the right teachers in my formative years, or better role models, perhaps I, too, could have grown up to be an engineer. A REAL engineer as we say in MY family – one who can take AND PASS the professional engineer exams. Because I DID grow up to be an engineer ultimately – a software engineer. Ahem. As the daughter and wife of engineers – nope, not the same thing. My SAT scores (remember those lovely exams?) were exactly even between math/science and english/literature. I told my initial college advisor I wanted to make a lot of money because I wasn’t at all sure I’d be happy in love. He pointed me to ceramic engineering. I lasted one quarter – 10 weeks – before realizing that there was no way I’d survive 4 years of engineering classes and the pre-med and engineering students that were in them. I called on my maternal heritage and switched to the liberal arts. My maternal heritage included a HUGE dose of theater (which explains many other things but we’re not going there today), which led to my OTHER desired title to explain Friend D and Person C.

There is a Brotherhood of Man. Oh yes there is. I learned this in my youth, courtesy of Frank Loesser, Abe Burrows, Jack Weinstock, and Willie Gilbert, J. Pierpont Finch and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. Shows like this were something about which my engineer dad and my actress mom could agree. Ah, those were the days when we could sing about brotherhoods and men and not feel disenfranchised. *grin*. Yes, I’m being a bit silly.

It’s Thanksgiving here where I am. I’m thankful for all my family and friends, yes, even for my acquaintances like Person C *laughing*. I’m thankful for great music and song. I’m thankful for all the geeks and engineers and all the theater and music folk. C’mon – click the youTube link and smile. They might be singing about the great big brotherhood of man but you’ll notice there’s a blonde in a red dress and red shoes. *grin* Guess which role I want?

Must be Getting Cold Outside

with apologies to Neil Sedaka 🙂

Don’t take the dark away from me
Don’t leave my room bright sunny
If you do then I’ll be blue
‘Cause waking up is hard to do

Remember when we went to sleep,
Got refreshed in slumbers deep?
Think of all that I’ve been through
Waking up is hard to do

You know that waking up is hard to do
And I know, I know that it’s true
Don’t say time to rise and shine
Instead of waking up I wish it were still sleeping time

I beg of you, don’t wake me up
Unless there’s coffee in the cup
Come on now another hour or two
‘Cause waking up is hard to do

You Can’t Multitask

Oh sure, I know you THINK you multitask wonderfully. You think the people on the other side of your phone call don’t realize you are only there partially. You think you are MORE efficient because you are doing several things at once. Guess what. You’re not more efficient. You are less efficient. Worse than that, in my opinion, is that you are incredibly rude. Rude. Ill-Mannered. Offensive. You know what reaction you are getting on the other end of YOUR inattention? People are turning off and turning away. Hey – if this isn’t that important to you, it’s not so important to me either.

Do a search on the phrase “multitasking less efficient”. Before you can complete typing the word “less”, the suggested search comes back with the phrase. I was going to put in links to studies showing that people who multitask are: (1) the very ones least able to handle multitasking (2) less efficient than those who do not multitask (3) less productive than those who do not multitask (4) decreasing their brain functioning even when they are NOT multitasking (lowers your brain IQ by 10 points even after multitasking) (5) raising their stress levels (6) wasting 20-40% of their time. There were WAY too many links for me to choose one or two. Still think that multi-tasking is a good idea?

I was in a business meeting the other day. There were 3 presenters. Two of them had given their slides to the host and had the host advancing the screen. The middle presenter, who spent the first few minutes in group chat pointing out that his time was limited and he had to be on directly at THIS time and not at THAT time, chose to run his presentation from his machine. Not a problem except he did NOT bother to shut down all his instant message windows. Still not a problem except he chose to open them and answer while he talked to us. Really???? You are trying to tell us about the importance of your product, and you are opening IM windows??? Even though you were saying “can’t talk now”, you were interrupting your own presentation. How incredibly rude. How incredibly stupid. Even when you talked to us and stayed on the screen, your voice was distracted. We knew you were looking at your phone or looking at the blinking IM bar. The fact is, you were a bore. I don’t know about others, but I tuned out. You kept interrupting the conversational flow. I’m not even mentioning all the times you said “um” or “uh”. You are the LAST person I would ever invite to give a presentation.

I have phone calls all the time with people who are obviously doing something else while talking to me. The big irony is that typically it’s the other person who requested the call. I can hear the distraction in your voice. You can’t articulate clearly what you want. You forget what you were saying. You are rude. You are inefficient. You are wasting my time. When I hear you drifting away, I leave too. This is not productive. It’s also not how effective leaders operate. When I am on the phone with my VP, I KNOW he’s focused on our conversation. We rarely need the full 30 minutes we schedule because we are both focused and on-topic the entire time.

Come on, people. Wise up. (*laughing* Or as my friend Jane used to say “couth up”) If you are trying to communicate with another person, be it voice or written, FOCUS. I’m so tired of emails with misspelled words, extra words, missing attachments. Take the time to – oh my gosh – REREAD what you’ve written before rushing to hit send. If you are talking to someone, don’t be opening your mail or IMs. Focus on the voice on the other end. It doesn’t take that much time or effort. You’re not impressing people favorably. You’re not working well. You’re rude. You’re inefficient. You’re a bore.

I have some writing to do. Please excuse me while I set my status to “do not disturb”.

Stepping Out

*Triumphant grin*  I DANCED Saturday night!!!!!  Yes, I mean my physical self, not my SL self.  I had to go to the doctor on Thursday to remove 3 lingering stitches. I tried to put on a real shoe, but could not fit my foot in. 😦 I was wiped out and frustrated and tired on Friday, after PT session #5. I decided that I needed to “take back my life”. Before anyone argues with that phrase, I know it’s not a very accurate statement. But that is how it FEELS. I want MY life back. I want to be bustling about doing what I do, with energy, getting things DONE. (Oh my, there is NOTHING more satisfying than crossing items of a to-do list!!!) I decided the focus this weekend was going to be on return to “normal”.

Friday night was getting out of my “invalid sleeping setup” and getting back to “go to bed”. Saturday we met friends for dinner. A mutual friend was going to be playing with his band at that restaurant. We had a LOVELY dinner – great company with lots of laughter and talk. The band arrived with their usual “groupies”. *grin* Wives and friends. Our friend’s wife was there, also a good friend of ours.

The band started right out rocking with “Backdoor Man” and kept going. I was bouncing in my seat, wanting to be MOVING. My friend got up to dance with another of the wives and called to me – “You can’t dance at all???” Well. You know me. I thought “What’s the worst that can happen? I’ll try to dance and won’t be able to shift weight.” So I got up and danced. It was wonderful!!! Dancing is easier than walking. I can fudge the weight distribution much more easily dancing. The only “blight” was that I was wearing flat sandals. OOOOOOHHHHHHH – I WANT my shoes! I didn’t dance long. It only took one injudicious placement for me to decide that I’d had enough fun for the evening.

Today I did a lot of house chores, cleanup, winterizing, bills, laundry. It’s the to-do list scenario. I’m getting things DONE and back in order. AND – I actually fit my foot into my boot. I can’t actually WALK on it, but the swelling is down sufficiently and there is just enough flexibility to make me think that perhaps by January I will indeed be back in my steampunk boots!

You put your right foot in, you put your right foot out, you put your right foot in and you shake it all about…..