Thursday, January 21, 2010


My employment is, professionally, to break things. To find the problems and errors in other people's work. This tends to foster a deep cynicism that can bleed over into non-professional life.

It's kind of like Terry Pratchett's description of witches who turn into cacklers (scroll down to the paragraph on 'cackling'). You start out looking for the cracks and dark places in everything, and well, of course you find them. They are everywhere, the way things are broken.

Part of the enjoyment of the job is getting that little thrill when you find an error. But it can get so all you want to do is find the problems, and not get any joy of actually seeing them fixed. The real goal IS to get things fixed, not to find the problems in the first place (which is just part of the process). This morning I noticed I was more disappointed at a fix than finding a further problem, which I figure is my job's equivalent of cackling. So I need to back off and reevaluate my headspace (see also: yesterday's post + Haiti + I have friends in both La Canada and Sierra Madre who aren't likely to evacuate by choice). I mean, I yelled at the man who DIDN'T PRESS THE BUTTON TO CROSS THE STREET, causing me to have to wait another cycle because mister was too high and mighty to press the pedestrian (in more ways than one) button. (look, the light doesn't change in that direction unless you press the button. PRESS THE DAMN BUTTON YOU IDIOT) January will be over soon. This is not that bad.

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