Archive for April, 2009

Writer’s Block

April 15, 2009
shamelessly stolen graphics

shamelessly stolen graphics

Okay, a little help there folks.

What with ‘life’ going on (doesn’t it always seem to get in the way of living?) and other various and sundry inanities, I’m in a drought of writer’s block.  I have ideas of things to write, but whenever I sit at my computer (or [gasp!] even at a desk with pen and paper), I end up drooling* and staring at the screen (paper).

Or, when I do actually start writing something, it ends up looking like Ralphie’s “theme” from ‘Christmas Story’ or my 3rd grade “What I Did On My Summer Vacation” essay.  Not real good stuff.  Not that I have to always put ‘good stuff’ out here (yeah, there have been a few ‘yawners’ I’ve put up in the past [sigh]).  But, I find myself hesitating to put anything out there now (this being the obvious exception).

Yes, I know I’ll get back in the groove… but would rather do so sooner than later.  So, other than the standard “Apply Alcohol In Copious Quantities” method, what else to do?

A little help?

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*So, okay, that drooling thing is pretty standard irrespective, but whatever…

Blinded By Science

April 6, 2009

Now, being a management gonk, I do also pride myself on having a fair-to-middlin’ grasp of engineering, math, and other similar weapons of the Devil.  But there are some times when you can’t rely on cold, hard facts…

Like many dysfunctional high performance organizations, my business group will seemingly randomly occasionally embrace the latest bullshit touchy-feely self-help tool*.

You may have heard of some:

–  some are for use at the organizational level—Total Quality Management (TQM) and Six Sigma for example.

–  others are more attuned to improving performance of the employees by enhancing their personal understanding of interactions with other human beings—Meyers-Briggs, for example**.

While this sounds noble and proactive on the part of our leadership, there has consistently been a lack of consistency*** in the application of these new methods.  More often than not, the initial excitement of promised improvements gives way to the reality that “this shit takes work to keep going and we’re not seeing much benefit”.

While we haven’t suffered enjoyed just such an opportunity to excel at improvement of late, a recent organizational meeting gave us a new chance to try the latest smoke-and-mirrors improvement tool*.  And, as I type this from home, for the life of me I can’t remember what the hell it’s called (thus showing just how big of an impact this made on me.  But…

The huddles worker masses assembled, the leadership designated guru of this new process pontificated on its glories.  Basically, this new method requires us to take a survey to subjectively determine what our strengths are (from a list of some 20), the goal being to maximize our strengths, not try and “teach up” our weaknesses. I was actually intrigued by the possibilities here.

Being as how this was subjectively surveyed and applied, that intrigue was shattered, sending me back into an abject funk, by the guru’s statement, said with a plastic smile:

“The results are calculated on a computer, so you KNOW it’s scientific.”

Ow.

Ow.

…ummm…no.

…next guru, please…

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*hur-hur-hur…i said, “tool”!

**ISTP…yep, you heard me right…ISTP.

***…if you’ll forgive the non-redundant redundancy

Photo Meme

April 2, 2009

meme-album-cover1

  1. Go to Wikipedia. Hit “random”or click http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random.The first random Wikipedia article you get is your band name.
  2. Go to Quotations Page and select “random quotations” or click http://www.quotationspage.com/random.php3. The last four or five words of the very last quote on the page is the title of your first album.
  3. Go to Flickr and click on “explore the last seven days” or click http://www.flickr.com/explore/interesting/7days. Third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.
  4. Use Photoshop or similar to put it all together.
  5. Post it to your blog  and tag the friends you want to join in.