Thursday, August 31, 2006

Perception is Reality

I've decided to change the name of my blog from "Harsh Reality" to "Perception is Reality". I have a boss who just loves to say "Well, that is your perception" as though that somehow makes my point any less valid. I find it very dismissive and condescending but you know what they say, "you can't win an argument with your boss" so I just don't bother wasting my breath anymore. I read a letter to the editor in the local paper where the letter writer made this statement and I thought it was very profound.

Of course, there are those that try to say if you change your perception then your reality changes. I can agree that perception is reality but I am not convinced that changing my perception changes my reality. If I have a beat up old junker of a car and decide one day to perceive it as a Mercedes, does it suddenly become a Mercedes? In my mind, maybe, but in reality, it is still a junker of a car. One person does not create reality. I think we all contribute to each other's reality. I am just too literal and logical to buy all this new age/spiritual/metaphysical crap. Think positive thoughts and good things will happen. Put out positive energy and the universe will return that same energy. Give me a break!

I did really try to get into it. I spent quite a bit of time reading books by Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, and Carolyn Myss among others. There was some good solid advice in some of those books but for the most part, I was left with more questions than anything. One of my favorites was a story in Carolyn Myss' book "Sacred Contracts". Firstly, I think her claims that she can diagnose/heal people by reading their energy is a bunch of crock. But the part that really disgusted me was this story of a woman she knew who was sad that her kids would not speak to her because she left them when they were little. Ms. Myss' goes on to explain that the mother hopes that one day she can reconcile with her children and that the kids will understand that she had a calling to be elsewhere. I'm sorry but, this woman abandoned her children for whatever selfish reason she had. No amount of perceiving it differently will change that reality.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Jet Lag?

I don't know if jet lag affects people when you didn't even change time zones but I came back to work on Monday just tired and in the worst mood. Of course, this always has a snowball effect. First I left my ID badge at home so I had to spend the whole day either borrowing a co-worker's badge or coming up with clever ways to move around the building without encountering a Cardkey machine. Then I check my email after not being here for a week and realize that I have a hearing scheduled for Tuesday that needs preparation. I spend most of the day doing other things of course, and don't start prepping the cases until about 3. Mind you I get off at 4:30. This worked out for the best because I got an email saying that 3 of the cases had been settled. I would have been even more pissed off if I had prepared all the cases and then gotten an email saying that those cases were settled. I am not a big fan of wasting time.

I get here on Tuesday morning, not as tired, but still a little grumpy. First the lawyer tells me ten minutes before the hearing that two of the cases are contested. Wow, it sure would have been nice to know before now so I could insert more questions into the script to build our case. I still have to copy and label all the exhibits for the hearings at 10. This of course takes forever and on top of that, I check my email and see that I was emailed another case at 4:50 p.m. on Monday! This really annoyed me. I hate last minute additions! So I spend about an hour waiting for the slow ass printer to print out the case file, writing the script, copying the exhibits, only for the idiot respondent to show up and sign a consent agreement. You could have done that long before now buddy and saved us all some time.

That's not even the worse part. My co worker who is supposed to be testifying that respondents were properly noticed is walking through the door to the hearing room. He turns around and sees me walking a few feet behind him. Stares at me for a few seconds, does not say hello or even nod his fricking head in acknowledgement, and then lets the door close! This is just beyond rude and inconsiderate. I think it is accepted courtesy nowadays to hold the door for people behind you! How does one not personalize something like this? I could see if it was a complete stranger. This is not the first time that he has acted like a total jerk though. So I have concluded that it is best for me to accept the fact that he is an arrogant, inconsiderate jerk. As much as I had hoped that I was wrong about him, he has just provided too much evidence to the contrary. Right after I made peace with that fact, he again proved my point. It turned out two of the other cases had been continued before the hearing date and he did not bother to let me know. Asshole!

Such has been my week so far at this place that I love to hate called work. I saw a flyer once that aptly describes how I feel in this place. "It's hard to soar like an eagle when you work with turkeys".

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Traveling

I am in Michigan this week at a conference on the beautiful MSU campus. The weather is great. 57 degrees this morning with expected highs of 78. Much better than Georgia I am sure where the heat and humidity is probably sapping the energy out of many. Michigan seems like an alright place to live even though I doubt I could find a man here if I were single. I am really not vain and I don't think that I am best looking thing around but some men seem to think otherwise because I cannot go anywhere without being hit on. This is my second day in Michigan and not even an interested glance have I received. Hence my conclusion that for me, finding a man here would be difficult. I am an acquired taste you know. Ask my husband.

Another observation...As a gardener, I notice the flowers and plants everywhere I go and I am having some serious dirt envy. While I must fight with and amend the Georgia clay soil if I want anything to grow, Michigan gardeners have wonderful soil that, from my cursory visual inspection, needs few, if any amendments.

Monday, August 07, 2006

What is it about the South...

...that makes my skin crawl? I have lived in the South for almost 13 years and I just couldn't quite put my finger on what it was. I just know that I hate living here. I have lived in Georgia for most of that time, about 11 out of those 13 years. I am not using just my experiences here in Georgia to judge the entire South. I spent 6 months in Alabama and hated it. I lived in Kentucky for 9 months and hated it. I have taken short jaunts into Tennessee, Mississippi and South Carolina and hated it. There is just something about the South that leaves me with a constant feeling of unease.

Could it be...

...that most Southerners talk really slowly and I am just too impatient to wait for them to get it out?
...that the heat and humidity are absolutely unbearable?
...that I find some Southerners are much too simple for my tastes? (I have been told that my cooking eggs in butter instead of oil is "fancy").
...that the "good ol' boy" mentality is rife in the South and I just believe that people should be treated fairly, no matter what?
...that it is rare to find someone here in the South that does not have a cigarette attached to their lips and/or a nasty "spit cup" for their chewing tobacco?
...that I find that most Southerners make important decisions-- like who to vote for-- based on emotion and knee jerk reactions and not rational and logical thought?
...that I am a very private person and most Southerners share entirely too much of their private lives with relative strangers and expect you to reciprocate?
...that Southern legislators think introducing legislation mandating that restaurants in Georgia serve "sweet tea" is an important issue? (Genius, that is why they have sugar on the table. Sweeten your own damn tea.)

I certainly don't look down on Southerners. They are human beings just like I am and living in the South does have its up side (the mild winters and the relatively low cost of living). Its just that I would think after 13 years I would be more acclimated to the culture. Apparently, it is not going to happen. I feel uneasy and creepy because I am a fish out of water here. I have absolutely nothing in common with most of the people I meet. I grew up in the Caribbean in a totally different culture. I know its not the South, it's me. There are plenty of people here from the Caribbean and they like it just fine. I don't. I still wonder how my husband came to be a product of something I dislike so much. I married a Southerner before I knew what the South was.