Friday, 10 August 2012

How did this get to be about fish?

Ever had to come to terms with the fact that, no matter how hard you try, you will just never have some certain quality that you wish you possessed?

My life seems to have themes.  Either that or I don't have a lot of original thoughts and my blog posts get more redundant with each new one I heap on.  It's probably a combination of both those things, but that's okay, because one day I'll write a book that assimilates all these posts, and all the repeated thoughts will give it cohesion.  Or maybe they will make the book circular and excruciating.  Stop judging my book.  I haven't even written it yet.

One of the themes is this: your greatest strength is also your greatest weakness (remember that blog post?).  The same DNA that makes me great at building relationships makes me lousy at being assertive, for fear of hurting someone's feelings.  The inclination to explore ideas also expresses itself as a dis-inclination to turn those ideas into actions.  I bet this is the same for you.  Are you task oriented?  I bet you can't figure out how to avoid upsetting those people who get in the way of completing those tasks.  Are you extremely analytical?  I bet you hate how unimaginative you are.

I've had a couple interesting interactions lately that have hit me in the feelers.  Both of them, in very different ways, suggested to me that 'execution' is something I am not good at.
I have a list of 99 amazing ways to get from the little bowl to the big one.  Ask me about them.  I'd love to tell you.  But, my two co-conversants reminded me, with varying levels of gentleness, guess which bowl I am still in?

These conversations have left me feeling like a round peg in a square hole.  It is precisely the lack of skill in execution that makes me believe it is the golden key to all the success in life.  I bet all my executioner friends feel the same way about getting along with people (at least, I hope).  In keeping with the fish theme, I feel like this:
Ever heard the saying, "Those who can't do, teach"?  It always made me laugh, because teachers are easy to hate (okay, that word's too strong.  Let's go with resent.), with their cushy union jobs and their 2 months of paid vacation.  But today I saw another side of this joke.

I bet the inverse is true too: Those who can't teach, do.  By that I mean, a lot of the most results oriented people out there are so busy getting tasks done that they are lousy teachers, and they tend to piss people off, because getting the stuff done is more important to them than the people involved.  So, who's left to teach people how to do things?  The non-executors. 

I wonder how many books on Takin Care Of Business have been written by people who are great theorists, but don't actually accomplish much.  I mean, what results-oriented person has time to stop gettin shit done long enough to write about it? Wouldn't that feel like a colossal waste of time for them?

Anyway, those are my ponderings.  Fish, get off your bicycles.  Ignore the Lance Armstrongs and their judgy-judginess.  They aren't fish, and I bet you'd KILL them in a breath holding competition.  Go swim.


  1. People who say "those who can't do, teach" have never stared down a class of 30 bored & hormone crazed 16-year-olds with nothing but a book in their hands and an overhead projector that MIGHT work.

    Or 20 6-year-olds who are only nominally toilet trained, and will cry because they fell, because they think it will get them attention, because everybody (or just one person) looked at them funny, or because it's Tuesday.

    Teaching is fucking hard, make no mistakes.

  2. I should have mentioned that. I give no disrespect to teachers. What they do is CHALLENGING, noble, and important, and the reason that they have such nice benefits here in Canada is to try and convince people to sign up for all that punishment.