MENTAL NOTE

"Though we cannot make our sun stand still, yet we will make him run."
Blue, resist the urge to use facebook. You can do it. Good luck.
Cats and dogs can be friends. So can cowboys and indians. So can we.
Why try to be the best when there's no hierarchy in heaven?

Sunday, May 3, 2015

When the Weakest Link Is NOT You...

Nobody wants to be the weakest link. Unless they are comfortably surrounded by kindred spirits and find a way to muster enough courage and stupidity to point their arrows at you. How's that for a dose of reality?

Who would've thought that being the strongest link is, in fact, a curse? I know my um... friend — let's call him 'Green' — didn't. He was as clueless as a manager on a Sunday morn. Green has been having serious health issues, you see, chronic ones too, so for him to be the strongest link in any office is somewhat of a miracle. But this is not a fairy tale, and you'd better believe me when I tell you that wrathful witches and evil curses really exist. Especially at the workplace.

Green is a hard-working guy (strrrrrrrrrike one!), he loves his job (strike two!) and, being a devoted teacher, is loved by most of his 500 or so students (strike three!). But since he is such a force to be reckoned with, he causes the well-hidden cracks in the system to become visible, and all eyes are on him now. They need to keep that guy in check. What if he causes the whole system to collapse and we all get our lazy asses fired? We sure can't have none of that!

Boy, are they watching him like a buncha hawks. You see, sometimes a system works because no one really cares. Sometimes a system works because the game is called Red Tape The Sequel: Watch That Clock From Nine Till Five And The Hell With Productivity Or Your Stupid Long Term Vision. I know, it's not a particularly catchy title, and it probably won't be as big a hit as Yourassic Park 4, but I didn't make the rules. Or Green. And the rules state very clearly, don't wreck the system. Things are good the way they are now. Be lazy. So what if we're making this boat sink in the long run? Time is on our side. Sing along: "Ti-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-ime is on our side, yes, it is."

No, it really isn't. So while Green is giving everything he does his best shot, he is being held down in the water—or so it feels. People who should be making his job easier in the name of a thing called team spirit are cramping his style and make him look bad with their clients. Green knows they're in cahoots. It's called interdependence and he is a problem. Tick-tock.

The strongest link.
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93 comments:

  1. Don't ya just love school politics.

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    1. is the ginger one a real character or is any similarity with real persons a pure coincidence and work of art? :)

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    2. Pure coincidence and a work of art.

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  2. as you know, and as you and I discussed so many times, it is the story of my life too! Sad is the world, my dear Green Blue, in which the greenest and bluest of us, not to mention the dezziest of us, have to fight the blackest ones with our lungs or hearts weary from the toil as it is. ....

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    1. That about sums it up. Well done. Now, let's get a drink.

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    2. On Bora? The Bora Bora one... you know...

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    3. hey, I just came with a cunning plan! Can you make an alliance with some of the good colleagues? And form the front against the slackers? You'd be stronger that way and you'd feel like you have a support against the mediocre villains

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    4. You mean Green. I'm afraid they're outnumbered. But that's okay. They're terrified anyway. Or so I hear.

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    5. they might even poop their pants.....

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    6. Ah there's that word again. It's been a while...

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  3. Don't be the glue that holds it together? Crap, too late!
    But hey, rise above others and all the crabs want to do is pull you down. You take away their excuses.

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    1. Amen. Somehow I knew you could relate, Alex.

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  4. Human nature can be something truly great and inspiring. It can also be something utterly appalling. Why do people feel the need to tear others down just because they soar a little (or a lot) higher than everyone else? Why does our human nature make us think that in order for us to be happy and achieve success, that others must be "taken down a peg" because they "make everyone else look bad"?

    I really hope that Green will keep being his awesome self, and that those school politics won't get him down.

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    1. I will tell him. And as for your why people feel the need to tear others down ... Maybe because they are the green ones.

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    2. Green with envy, or "Green" as in inexperienced? Probably a little bit of both?...

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    3. Envy... fear... incompetence... If only they were rookies, then at least they'd have some kind of excuse.

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    4. Envy, Fear, and Incompetence. Three of the greatest human weaknesses. All that's missing are Greed, Pettiness, and Ignorance.

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    5. No, they're not missing. Unfortunately.

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  5. That is quite the dilemma and one that shows its green face in other work environments as well. The strongest link being perceived as the weakest link in some ways as others don't want you to break the chain they have created..people tear others down to make themselves feel better, it gives them a sense of false power. What's wrong with wanting to cut that chain to make improvements in a system that needs to change. The greens are jealous so they make trouble its easier for them that way. Now, if I were a green/blue guy I would reach for the sky..hey "the sky's the limit" ..as the sky really has no limit..it is unending.

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    1. Some folks need to get fired, is all Truedessa. Except that some of said folks get to be in charge. Or so I hear. I guess Green isn't a fan of mediocrity.

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    2. that is sad Blue when the weakest gets fired so those who "think" they are the strongest can rule. I have trouble with this Blue....what is considered justice and fair...does fair even exist? Who is blue and who is green and who are those stuck in between? And who is the knight to save all the blues and greens from those evil spells?

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    3. Fair is what those in charge say it is.

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    4. ha - that is so true...what's wrong with the world Blue? The weeping willow still weeps..

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  6. I hate that. I am always the strongest link. I try to encourage the weak links. Some of them get pretty pissed off. It is better for me to stay at home. No one will hire me anyway.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. No one will hire you... Say it ain't freakin' so, Janie. What's wrong with those people?

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    2. I'm too old, and I don't have much experience because every time I got a job, X would get fired or quit and we'd have to move.

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    3. Everyone is so obsessed with staying young that you and I are branded 'too old'. They can all go to hell.

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  7. Ah, bureaucratic bullshit - even in the schoolyard. Or is it 'tall poppy' syndrome? Either way, it's disappointing I must say. But I suspect "play along' you must NOT.

    Walk your own path, Blue.

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    1. Blue, I thought Wendy has gone missing.... where did you find her?

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    2. She has been luxuriating on Bora Bora. I gave her the key to my villa. She didn't tell you?

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    3. That's right, Dezzy. And I'm horribly sunburnt. Will have to spend some time in my cave - to recuperate ..

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    4. He's so quiet. He must be jealous. :p

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    5. I was just waiting for you to offer some sun tan rub to sunburnt Wendy :)

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  8. Thanks for visiting:).sorry to hear about Green. I guess its days like this I am glad I work at home, not much politics to be involved in.

    Betty

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    1. I work at home as much as I can for the very same reason. :))

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  9. Doing a lot can get you in water that's hot. Doing just enough to get by, makes them a happy mediocre guy. That is why I'm unemployed at my sea. The mediocrity is what is looked for from sea to sea. They want hard workers and blah blah blah they say, but in the end they just want the pay. Hire enough to fill the quota and such, but make sure they don't do too much. Or if they do, flush them down the loo. Pffft to all of that crap. I need to win the lottery and free myself from the 9-5 trap. Yeah right. Such a plight.

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    1. Unemployed at your sea... You told me that would happen. I'm sorry to hear that, Pat. Did you remember to flip them he double bird? Happy mediocre guys can eat flies.

      Did you know that most people who win the lottery had plenty of cash to begin with?

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    2. I knew most who won were old, never knew they had lots of gold. And oh well at my sea, I'll last until sept before a cardboard box is home to me lol

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  10. Blue, but what happened to the squeaky wheel get's the grease? Have you thought of that? Perhaps this is the calm before the storm when everyone in the office will eventually start to understand you- oh, I mean, Green's vision? You never know.

    Sometimes change is hard at first and everyone around you resists but then someone smacks their arses into shape and voila! Change occurs.

    It's like a revolution. One person gets educated about how much better it could be and slowly others start to join but the majority resist because they are happy with status quo since that is the easiest to do-- rest on your laurels and wait for the other guys to make change.

    But then "Green" marches out from the shadows carrying a torch and a bullhorn and with a mob of enlightened revolutionists behind him marching to the beat of a drum, and chanting “Change! Change!”

    Then the villagers slowly begin to tap their feet to the drum beat, and then they wave their hands to the rhythm and then they finally start chanting and eventually they relent and fall in step with the mob behind "Green."

    And everyone lives happily ever after.
    The End.

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    1. Now, that's what I call a top-notch comment, Lauren. The calm before the storm? Well, I'm not placing any bets. That much I do know. Green's vision is based on experience, hard work, putting in the hours, none of which is familiar territory for the majority of them, I tell ya. It's a shame. Too many talking heads, you know. Too much overhead.

      Thanks for the happy ending :))

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  11. I wish this was a fairy tale, that Green would miraculously recover his chronic ills & that his beloved students would take a stand, making the bureaucratic bastards get axed thus allowing someone awesome peeps to be put in charge. But that aint life & life aint fair. I hope that in the meantime Green doesn't drown :-(

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    1. Green won't drown. I'm sure he'd take a straw and suck the pool dry singel-handedly. Well, you know what I mean.

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    2. Excellent. I'm a cheering for Green!!!!

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    3. And I'm peacefully cursing with you (on you right shoulder) as you teach those hills AKA bad ass mountains a lesson or two.

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  12. I lived this when I was working in IT. People say they want excellent, but they don't. They just want enough to scrape by, and anyone going above and beyond is clearly just trying to make the others look bad or expose flaws in the workplace. So... I gave up trying. That's not a very inspiring ending, is it? Well, it wasn't my passion, so giving up was a lot easier than I assume it would be for you. Don't give up. That's lame.

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    1. People say they want excellent, but they don't... So true. Green isn't giving up. He'd rather die.

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  13. true story for any work place in the world. we can't choose who we are put to work with much like how we can't choose our siblings (hmm).
    and office politics. urghh. that's the only part of my working life that i don't miss. i feel for Green. hoping that it doesn't end up being too much to bear for him.

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    1. Darn... Even you can relate. I had hoped you would've been spared the experience, Jaya J. Too much is a phrase that has been torn out of his dictionary.

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    2. but why, Blue, are you surprised ? :)

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    3. I know... I shouldn't be. Stupidity is a universal thing.

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  14. Glad to see you joining the green-side. I totally agree. Being the strongest link can be worse than being the weakest link. Best to just float right there in the middle, manage expectations. Good luck to you trying to swim to the top of the bureaucracy.

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    1. In the middle? Do I look like a sandwich to you? Just kidding.... I hear you, Pickleope.

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  15. Once there was a Mr. Blue
    Who was just a Grumpy Goo
    Seems he met a Mr. Green
    Things were not just peachy keen
    Misty froth, turquoise, sea breeze
    Blend them together without a sneeze
    I came over to sit a spell
    And say workplaces can be hell

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    1. How I love you little rhyme
      Now, let the workplace doorbell chime
      No one's in or so it seems
      Green is blue devoid of dreams
      Not giving up when he is down
      No grumpy goo green office clown

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  16. If only Green had a magic speedo
    To wave and change the creedo.
    Clean the house,
    Of every louse,
    Let everything be neat-o.

    or door # 2:

    All systems are being dumb-down. I have friends taking early retirement to avoid entanglements similar to what I read here. The retirement system has also suffered a few dumb things and thus the end financial status is not what it should be. One friend on the verge of being fired for "following protocol" (?) was offered early retirement to save her pension. I see this happening too often. The umbrella is only so big - how many people can stand under it? There is a planned madness to this... I am certain.

    or door # 3:

    Did you know, when people get extremely angry, frightened, grieved, or other strong emotion, they have a tendency to lose their voice? As if they've been choked off, and lost ability/privilege /courtesy/ to speak freely. Maybe Green can step back and not be so "accommodating" to anyone or thing, more than himself... (a couple of weeks will do until the universal force kicks in. April has been very trying.) Tell him to take extra care health-wise; laugh a lot... embrace something/someone(s) that give him joy. Kill the snails with kindness and a little salt.
    Excuse the long-winding road, no? this long comment!!

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    1. If Green had a magic speedo
      His nickname would be magneto
      He'd attract all folks nuts
      Then spill out his guts
      And stuff them with a burrito
      Wendy, when I retire
      They'll put my pants on fire
      They'll hose me down too
      Then yell Scooby Doo
      And tell me do not inspire

      It's a catch 22.

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    2. Oh geez, I think you have what I have... Wendy.

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    3. I have Wendy? She never told me.

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  17. Time is always in short supply
    Interdependence not easy to defy
    When starting young
    Where it had begun
    Better skills and not to work in a sly

    Hank

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    1. Hi Hank
      The Poetry Tank!
      Time is always running out
      Whether you're quiet or shout
      Skills can be a curse
      No knowledge to dispurse

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  18. Mediocrity is everywhere. It has become how the world gets run

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  19. Green is such a pretty color... but so many people prefer bland. Tell Green to not let other people dull his shine.

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    1. Bland is safe, Lynda. I'll tell him.

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  20. I like working in an environment where team spirit reigns & all is professional ~ I hate it when reality bites and everyone is back stabbing everyone ~ Have a good week Blue ~ I have been feeling lazy lately, smiles ~

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    1. Professional... full stop. And when that's lacking and all go slacking there'll be walls that start cracking. ;)

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  21. People have a tendency to act dumb at times. Just keep on being you.

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  22. Seems like you move from one frying pan to the next. I hope things work out for Green things don't happen to make him Blue. Hope you are feeling better, too.

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    1. I guess I like cooking plus I'm aptly named ;) Thanks, Snowcatcher. I will come and visit you real soon, okay?

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  23. So, um Blue, I mean Green, I wonder if you're like me? I work harder than my coworkers because sometimes I feel the need to prove myself (to them or me I'm not sure) because of my health issue...

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    1. Hi Elsie. No, that's not it. It's just that I've always been a doer, not a talker. I get things done before I lose interest. I'm professional that way in spite of my health issues which started in 2011. That's the frustrating thing: I get things done in spite of it all. That said, I'm sure we have a lot of things in common ;)

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  24. I think Blue, or Green, need to put up a poster for said prick colleagues that says "You never look good trying to make someone else look bad." Think they'd get a clue to stop the slacking then?

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  25. "Clueless as a manager"- love it. You know, I have a friend going through something like this. She just kicked ass as a contractor and now a couple of the executives are feeling threatened by her. Pathetic. People would rather just crawl into their lazy little holes than achieve greatness.

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    1. These days everybody is called a manager. At McDonald's you will find Big Mac Managers and if you need to take a leak, there's bound to be a potty bathroom manager even though no one ever takes a Mc Shower at a McDonald's establishment. I sure can relate to your friend. It's a pity that excellence is less important than mediocrity.

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  26. I like Green. I like him because he won't settle for mediocre. And why should he? Because it's easy to? Because it upsets the apple cart? Sod the apple cart, I say. You can win whatever way so you may as well pave the way with rightfulness and kick the cores to the kerb. Go Green!

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    1. It's the only way. I love your spirit, Jules. But you knew that already.

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  27. can't not can. You never can. well, you can but it feels like you can't. Shall we have a nice glass of wine?

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  28. Hello Blue,

    Blue sees Green as a peaceful defiance that will not be placed conveniently in a labelled box. Corruption, collusion, is just delusion. Those who make such an intrusion, will not be an inclusion. Green is better than that and that be a fact.

    Gary

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    1. A peaceful defience... I like that. Good to hear from you, Gary.

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  29. Hi Grumpy how are you doing???
    loads of love to you:))))

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    1. I'm tired, Gloria Dear. But I'm doing okay :)

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  30. Sometimes the weakest link just needs to be a favorite to move up the corporate ladder. I know that all too well. Chin up, blue!!

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