I really love it when people let their guard down and are themselves. No worries about trying to impress. No doubts over if what you say or do is politically correct. Most people, in the work environment at least, aren't themselves. There's some unwritten rule that in order to advance you need to wiggle your way into conversations, brag heavily about your accomplishments, not listen to others, and basically think you know EVERYTHING about EVERYTHING. It's comical.
Often times while this is happening, I enjoy just kicking back and observing it all unfold. I stay quiet and watch others. They say that 80% of our body language is non verbal. This I believe. Unintended eye rolls, sighs and clock watching is not usual while all the holy-moly bologna swirls in the air like a Harry Potter spell.
Two days ago, a coworker of mine found this Hercules Rhino Beetle in the parking lot around the street. She was so proud of her find. She brought it back into the office. Cupped in the palm of her hand, she proudly went from office to office displaying her new find. She was acting childlike and from a 50-something, it was totally refreshing. I smiled when she came into my office and asked me if I wanted to touch her find. "It's so soft. Just touch it." "It smells like a Stink Bug," is what I was thinking. The beetle did not look real. It was dead but maintained it's perfect shape and shiny shell. "Unbelievable," was what I said. "It's perfect!"
"Just perfect." But I didn't just mean the dead beetle. Perfect was her reaction to the find. As if she was a two year old discovering a hidden plastic Easter egg in August. She showed us all her true side; her curiosity with Mother Nature who can be so surprising and beautiful. She didn't care what we thought of her parading a dead beetle around the office as if it's her turn at show and tell. She just didn't care and I loved that.
Savor the details.
Friday, July 22, 2011
Lunch at Panera. I love their salads and I usually head there later in the day so I miss the rush. There's a very nice woman that works there. She's chatty, funny and knows me by name. It's nice to get out of the office and go somewhere where the food is good and people know you.
I quickly munched away. A last minute rush job waiting for me back at the office didn't leave me with much time for lunch. Happy though because supper involved friends and pizza, who cares if lunch is short and salad.
I took note of the people surrounding me; an older gentleman with his 3pm coffee, a 40 something dad on his earpiece chatting away while his pre-teen son sat in front of him - totally bored, three friends who had never been to Panera and took an unusually long time to decide what they were going to eat while I patiently waited behind them, a casually dressed business man (a banker I would guess) eating at the table directly in front of me.
I brought with me the local, small town paper that was in my car. Skimming through it reminded me of the paper I grew up reading. There was usually someone mentioned that I knew in it. After 15 years here in the south, I rarely know anyone in this paper.
I glanced up to take inventory again. The 40 something dad was off the phone and asking his son to "promise" to do something. The older gentleman was lost in thought with his coffee. I caught his eye and he smiled at me. A kind smile and a reminder of why I love the south. The new customers were nodding and enjoying their lunch. And the casual business man was gone. Mostly. He left his plates on the table. I wondered what makes someone think it's just fine to leave their mess on the table and expect another to pick up after them? There are clearly garbage containers in the restaurant. I bet his wife picks up after him at home. Maybe his mama never taught him manners? Maybe he's been called back to the perform life-saving surgery? Maybe he's Superman? Who knows...
I quickly finished up and dutifully stacked my plate, silverware, and bowl by the garbage. No one would be picking up my mess. I'm perfectly capable and really grateful that my life isn't not so rushed that I can't do this small task.
Savor the details.
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Thursday, July 14, 2011
I watched the film "Looking for Lincoln." It is a part of the traveling American Library exhibit. The film examines the life and legacy of Abraham Lincoln and is written by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
I had no idea Lincoln was such a victim of his own moral contradictions and by today's standards would be considered a racist. Or that's what the movie leads you to believe. Or maybe that's just what Gates wants you to believe. I don't know. I really don't remember learning anything about Lincoln in school. It seems like I would have at some point but I don't recall.
The film is shot in a "60 Minutes" format with many Lincoln experts being interviewed. I found it annoying how many cut away to Gates there was and at one point, I swear he was using his walking cane in the other side. Did I really need to see Gates reading Lincoln's manuscript, Gates walking around a museum, Gates at Gettsyburg? It seems over the top in cockiness.
Overall the film was thought provoking and introduced new ideas to me about Lincoln. Perhaps he was human after all?
Savor the details.