Tuesday, 16 January 2007

And if one green bottle...

should accidentally fall, you'll get pale brown lager all around the hall. This was unfortunate, but when, later, I knocked over the bottle I was drinking from (not at the moment I was drinking, you understand, I'd put it down) and spilled it on the carpet, it seemed more like carelessness.

On the other hand, my luck was in and I won a bag of seed potatoes at the Gardening Club raffle. I sat next to a woman I hadn't seen before and who, it transpired, has just joined. She grows lots of vegetables and sells some of them at the Friday evening market and I said that, if she still has a surplus, to offer them to Al. I even asked her name and have remembered it!!(!). This may not appear remarkable to you sophisticated yet friendly people, but I am remarkably bad at that. When meeting someone new, I always tell them my name. Generally, if there seems any doubt in their eyes, I tell them again on the second and third meetings as I do not expect to be remembered - this is not humility but an acceptance that this is the way life is, most people are not brilliant at remembering names. However, when I say "Hello, I'm Z, I am *something pertinent about me*", quite often I simply get "Hello Z" back, when I'm hoping for "Hello Z, I'm X."

Sometimes, I know someone for quite some time before I find out their name or their job. I never ask about jobs as I do not evaluate people by what they do for a living. But it means that I'm always the last person to find out anything.

Tomorrow night, it's the Car Club Christmas dinner. They always have it in mid-January, which I think is a very good idea. We're all Christmas-dinnered-out in December. I always find it slightly sticky, actually, as I hardly know most of the members, but I'll put on my party manners and scintillate as much as decorum suggests.

10 comments:

Dandelion said...

I never ask about jobs as I do not evaluate people by what they do for a living.

Whyever not? Presumably, you look at people, their faces, or their fabulous shoes, or use other information about them to get a handle on them, or a feeling about them. If you don't judge people by what they do, how can you justify judging them (and I mean that in the loosest sense) by any other characteristic? If you don't, how can you differentiate between people, find common ground, demonstrate an interest, or meet eachother's needs? The only place you get "pure heart and mind" in an interaction is on the internet, I would say.

Personally, I think what people spend their working life doing, and how they feel about it, is kind of important and integral to the person. The only reason (ok, there are two) why I don't ask is because a)It might make the person uncomfortable, and b)I'm sometimes too self-absorbed to really care enough for it to occur to me to ask.

I also don't think that "evaluation" is the only reason a person might ask, so "not evaluating" is not a strong argument for not asking.

I'm being slightly devil's advocate, but just because I can. I hope you don't mind.

Good luck with the scintillation

jen said...

Z,
I am with you - asking so what do you do is so, well, western, isn't it?

must share pictures of Car Club Christmas Dinner. Please. I cannot stop giggling about CCCD. In fact, is Car Club a secret?

Oh wait, that's Fight Club.

Still.

Z said...

I started with a longer explanation of what I meant, Dandelion, but it seemed a bit laboured so I cut it out. Back to Horace 'I strive to be brief and I become obscure' (I'd have to look up the Latin, can't remember it any more). I'll make more effort and post an explanation.

Jen, I've never been asked so much about what I do than by Indian businessmen.

It is the Yagnub and District Classic Car Club, which will make you laugh even harder. Our coolest member by far is K*n W@llis, of autogyro fame. Do you remember the J@mes Bnd film, U Only L1ve Tw1ce? He was flying (and had built) Little Nellie, the autogyro. He is over 90 now and still flying.

stitchwort said...

Z - wonder why dandelion is reluctant to give any information about her/himself? No chance at all to find common ground!
Just a touch of devil's advocate here too.

Z said...

Because she can, I should think, Stitchwort! I didn't think I'd necessarily know more about Dandelion if I knew what she did for a living. But I enjoyed being challenged by her.

Murph said...

I would be a little bit nervous if a 90 year old was buzzing overhead in an autogyro.

Dandelion said...

Because nobody asked me, stitchwort.

Or do you mean my hidden profile? It's because my blog privacy was recently compromised and the compromiser is still digging.

Z said...

Live dangerously, Murph. He does the 'look, no hands, look, no feet, whoops, look, no teeth' routine, too.

PI said...

z please tell me you don't drink lager out of a bottle?

Z said...

Pat, now I feel three inches tall.

Not often, I promise. Really embarrassing to be caught drinking lager. It was late, I hadn't drunk alcohol for over 24 hours, it was, having been unpacked from the dropped case, right there on the kitchen table...I'll stick to real ale in future, and that doesn't taste right unless in a beermug.