On Fighting

November 14th, 2005  |  Published in old and busted  |  7 Comments

> I always do everything right.

I never do anything wrong.

I’m a Romper Room Do Bee

A Do Bee all day long!

I’ve never hit a gtd adherent. I need to be up front about that.

I thought about picking fights with a few, I guess, but it’d involve barging into the comments over at 43 Folders like Bruce Lee in “Fist of Fury” and fighting with people who want little more than to be more efficient and get more work done. They don’t deserve to be antagonized for that.

Sometimes I read a comment from someone who insists that his routine involves some insanely arcane and convoluted use of yarn and a special shell script he whipped up that reads crap down from his Backpack account and then squirts it into his Palm, makes a redundant backup on the server he maintains in Malaysia and produces printed 3×5 copies in triplicate, one of which he pins to his infant son’s sleeve before leaving for the morning (“If I died, I couldn’t live with him thinking his father went out the door without an action list and a plan!”).

Somtimes, I was saying, I read something like that and I want to find that person and give him a noogie or burn two of his four backup copies. One, because I imagine that the “system” being described is a giant lie concocted by someone caught up in the thrill of inventing systems instead of actually, you know … using them to get stuff done. Two, because if these people are making these systems work for them then they’re surely VERY POWERFUL BEINGS we should hate and fear because we’re all going to end up working for them.

Who am I kidding? We do work for them. Or the version of them that assiduously avoids yarn and 3×5 cards in favor of bending others to their will.

It’s been that way up to this point, anyhow. But as I was typing into the blog just yesterday, I suddenly don’t want to do anything to them. I don’t want to laugh at them, or mock their compulsive need to do more, or smack my teeth at their insistence that they’re actually DOING all the things they claim to do to be more efficient little do-bees.

Other people I suddenly want to leave alone:

  • Doc Searls

  • Dave Winer

  • Eric Raymond

  • Jonathan Schwartz and Claire Giordano.

  • Anyone who uses the word “blogosphere” without at least a hint of self-deprecating inflection

  • Paul Graham

  • Everyone who promotes Paul Graham essays on reddit

  • People who use tags on del.icio.us that I don’t like.

  • People who use the word “objectively” to describe a personal preference for which there is probably no consensus. (e.g. “Harlan Ellison is objectively better than Larry Niven”, “Crunchy peanut butter is objectively superior to smooth.”)

  • Latin abusers

  • Everyone commenting in this thread and Dean “Dinotrac” Pannell.

  • The entire city of Charlottesville, VA, most especially the editorial staff at “C-Ville Weekly.”

To all of the above:

This is not a craftily presented list of people my disciples are to hate without qualification despite my averment that the fatwa has been lifted. Henceforth, fuckers, you’re all of you off the hook. Enjoy your free pass.

Things I resolve to do in lieu of being a hater:

  • Take the time to thoroughly peel my oranges, then separate them into their smallest neat segments, and to eat one orange each morning and afternoon, using a bowl and napkin to minimize getting juice on my desk.

  • Keep a pitcher of fresh water on my work table, which I’ll empty (into myself, using a cup or glass) morning and afternon.

  • Acknowledge that even if shrimp have no faces, I should still endeavor to not eat them. Same with clams. Whether cows and chickens have faces is not a question of perspective, and I will not entertain the notion that it might be in a moment of weakness.

Since I’m in the midst of coming clean:

Phil, I never should have smashed that pot pie. I feel bad about it to this day.

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