3. Rhetorical ShenanigansChapter: Not Posts
By Jason Dubow
A. First real decision of the day: escalator v. elevator. On the one hand, despite extensive summer of 2013 repairs the escalator seems not to work in the same sporadic ways as before, but the elevator isn’t a well-oiled machine either and the speed of assent can easily be slowed by a sudden and unpredictable increase in riders to lower floors. Of course, there’s no meaningful benefit to arriving at my office at 8:08 as opposed to 8:09, and so why do I not commit to one mode of ascension or the other, no further consideration necessary?
B. SchoolLess and I used to race; he and escalator generally triumphed, suggesting that there are factors other than speed involved in my decision making process. This is one of the many things, not all of them trivial, that I miss about having him here as he was during the home/school time. On a somewhat related note, SmallerMan has finally convinced me, after much debate, that it’s better to take whichever train comes first, the A or the C, to or from Jay Street, as the benefit of the A express over the C local is, counter to my instinctual sense, negligible. However, I still refuse, pending convincing data, to transfer to the G at Hoyt-Schermerhorn rather than the F at Jay when heading home; when heading to the city, on the other hand, G or F to A or C is, for me, a matter of whim.
C. I’ve been encouraged not to take the various challenges of the workplace–most of them small picture but some of them big–personally with this bromidic kicker: "That’s just St. Francis College." Is that the good news or the bad? It is what it is but must it be?
D. To cede a little control in order to maintain a lot seems to be a common tactic in schools, for sure, but perhaps everywhere: business, government, interpersonal relations. STEM to STEAM; Facebook privacy settings; apologies(!), will do better, will take feelings or feedback into consideration next time/year/life: all rhetorical shenanigans, perfunctory and infantilizing, meant first and foremost to put off true change and compromise.
E. I am not a fan of the Faustian bargain (I am what I am) and am particularly not a fan of the inevitable post-bargain buyer’s remorse. Nobody made you do it; the decision was made, whether in a particular moment or over time, with the option to embrace or avoid conscious reason as you saw fit; and if you’d asked me, I would have been happy to provide a spoiler alert.
F. As a trauma or an early rehearsal stage direction (play it drunker; imagine you have a raging erection; try funny) always leaves some trace, once you have crossed a line—a toe dipped in madness, a better left unsaid sentiment spoken, an ethical slip—you can never go all the way back to the way things were.
A + B + C + D + E + F = I don’t know what, hence: this is not a post.