Thursday, June 10, 2010

Productive Town, Blue Teeth, Eyes, and Lies (and Limitations)

Productive Town will be discussed last because that is the topic that is likely to
take the longest to write. Productive Town is a more personal discussion, while Blue
Teeth and Lies pertain to societal issues and Limitations is about a popular belief.
Browse as you please.

Blue Teeth

More commonly known as blue tooth headsets, blue teeth present a very convenient
social excuse. At my job at a local gas station/convenience store, a number of
customers shop and pay while conducting business on their cell phones. I have since
grown accustomed to this display of rudeness because I realize that many of these
people are conducting legitimate business calls (although I doubt any of them are
too busy to wait for or pause that call for the short amount of time it takes to
make and pay for a cup of coffee). However, blue teeth present a different form of
rudeness because it is now somewhat hidden. A call no longer requires the person to
operate with one hand or awkwardly pinch his or her phone on between shoulder and
ear. The person now stands erect and free while still tied to a business call; now
feels not-rude because there is less physical notice of the said rudeness, even
though the actual act is not any less rude.

Eyes (The Contact Of)

Also at my job at a local gas station/convenience store, I have noticed that human
contact is largely illegitimate when eye contact is absent. This becomes evident when
ringing up a customer if eye contact is not established by me. As I take their money
and make their change, if I continue to not look at them, I can feel them looking at
me, waiting for contact to be established. See, kids? Eye contact is crucial! And,
sometimes, there are times when it makes sense to split an infinitive verb!


Also at my job at a local gas station/convenience store (haha), I have noticed that
society teaches us to lie. (At least this seems to be true for Central Pennsylvania
and is probably also true for the rest of America, at least.) This concept does not
require much explanation, other than a short example:
"Hi, how are you."
"Good, you?"
"Good." (or no response)
This societal lesson of lying is particularly evident when the person offers no
response. Clearly if he or she asked me and does not care enough to offer the same
lie of an answer, he or she could not have possibly care genuinely about the question
or my lie of an answer. We are primed to lie, become accustomed to it, and are likely
to experience less remorse when presented with a real opportunity to provide another.


[Saved as a draft text; copied here unedited]
Contrary to popular belief, there are very few limitations in this world. You can do
most anything you want, but it is essential that you want it. Risk? Be wisely safe,
but unafraid. Uncertainty? Learn from others, then your own experiences.
Perhaps limitations (glass ceiling, etc) are also fabricated by society. Society,
society... we blame it all on society? And remove the personal responsibility? No,
for what is society other than a complicated web of individuals, all with personal

Anyway, this provides a transition into the next and most important topic because
it is essential that you want it. Even if limitations are a figment of society's
imagination, if we believe them to be real, they are real in their consequences
(see: Thomas Theorem). Even if limitations largely do not exist, one must want to
overcome these imagined limitations in order to be motivated to do so...

Productive Town (and Productivity)

[Excerpts from journal entries on June 10, 2010; edited]
Textbook depression = "little to no interest in the things that have always given
you joy…” People experiencing depression, whether situational or prolonged, typically
reduce themselves to doing nothing else other than working and sleeping. I suppose
they lose interest in everything because activities feel like they would become
scapegoats. If they were to bury themselves in productivity, perhaps they would feel
this to be severe denial - that they are distracting themselves, rather than owning
up to how they feel. So instead, they do nothing so that they are fully aware of
their sadness and sleep so that, on the contrary, they feel nothing. They do nothing
so that they feel and sleep so that they do not feel (because they cannot handle the
depths of their sadness).

_____Supposedly, productivity is injured by sadness. But what if it is the other way
around? What if a lack of productivity creates sadness? Even worse, what if this
absence reveals sadness?
_____Generally, when I am sad, I do experience a loss of interest and a decrease in
productivity. This is to be expected, supposedly. But what if the opposite is true?
When I am sad, I cease to be productive because focusing on being productive would
distract me from my sadness and, in a sense, deny the real issue (unless, of course,
there is no real issue and the sadness is legitimately illogical). When I am sad, I
cease to be productive because I want to attack my feelings, rather than distracting
myself from them.
_____Generally, when people begin to cease being productive, they begin to feel sad.
This suggest that being productive is crucial to being human and, likewise,
surviving. Therefore, a lack of productivity causes sadness.

_____Productivity and satisfaction are inherently connected. Everything is
interrelated, entwined. The connection is visible in Erikson’s eight-stage theory
and I am sure it is obvious throughout the rest of psychology and sociology, as well
as the other social sciences. Trust, autonomy, initiative, industry, identity,
intimacy, generativity, integrity.
_____I’ve said that the foundation of “happiness” is to determine what one wants,
because clearly, what one wants cannot provide any satisfaction unless it is
understood as being wanted. However, it does not stop there because, after
determining what is wanted, it must be produced – achieved, attained, created, etc.
That’s the difference. It’s not just knowing what is wanted, but it is having an
active role in producing the goal.
_____Goal-Setting. It’s not appreciated at first and should be better-communicated
as being very important.
_____One must take an active role in producing his or her own happiness. Far too
many people expect “happiness” to simply fall on their heads or for them to simply
stumble upon it. Unfortunately, this is not how “happiness” works, however you may
define it. It is more than simply deciding what one wants; although I never
explained the second step because I expected it would follow naturally. I see now
that the first step makes more sense when followed by the second step. One must
decide what he or she wants and then take an active role in producing it, whether
this production is achievement, attainment, creation, discovery, or something else.
_____Perhaps what no one realizes is that this productivity may be more fulfilling
than the actual goal that is eventually produced. Maybe. There certainly are
negative effects of repeatedly or continuously failing to achieve a goal. But aside
from that, maybe the productivity really is more important. The feeling of getting
something done may be one of the most fulfilling of all feelings. Not getting
something done, but rather being productive and working toward a goal. This is why I
emphasize “goal-setting” as absolutely crucial to “happiness.” But the goal is
simply preliminary. The goal will give you nothing if you just let it sit there.
Nothing. No work, no reward?
_____(This is why it is crucial to know WHAT you want to do, so that your
productivity will satisfy you.)


In other news, as a post script (and crooked lines!), fame is completely unimportant
to me and celebrities almost always sicken me, as does the idea of celebrity-ness.
Please do not proselytize me with your excitement. I will be excited for you; for the
fact that you are excited for others, but I will not be excited about the concept,
the reason, for excitement. And, in still other news, I don't feel like explaining,
particularly when I do not fully understand it.

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