Originally published 7/18/10
There was a 1980's movie with Bill Murray, where he was a summer camp counselor -- the name of the movie was Meatballs or something like that. Anyway, I remember Murray leading the campers in a chant of: "It just doesn't matter,..." because they were losing some athletic event against another camp.
Funny what sticks in your head, and can amuse you years and years later. I have a lot of movie quotes floating around in my head, just like that one.
Anyway, I'm four months into the sabbatical now, and I'm finding my preoccupation with all of the petty details that went on in my work life not bothering me much any more. All of those labels we used to use -- "He's good," "She failed," its all so -- fabricated. I mean, in the big scheme of things, does it really matter if you did a great job on that particular presentation?
While I don't believe that most people have the capacity for Machiavellian plotting (although, I've met at least one CEO who does...), it's puzzling how the structure of corporations, especially the roles for managers and professionals, seem almost designed to extract the maximum amount of life from people, and quickly facilitates the discarding of the empty husks when finished. It just doesn't matter...
I'm starting to gain some new perspective on all of this -- by being able to look at it more as an outsider and less like a victim of the system. Some of those criticisms that those of us who were in the rat race used to shrug off, have merit to them. Take some time and think about what outsiders observe, and don't just discard it as unsophisticated drivel this time.