Halloween in June

So you work in a store, a big store.

It’s June.

A truck delivers big packs of Halloween shit.

Yeah! That’s the way it works today…

You’re like a bit amazed by such an amount of stupidity.

But you’re told to present all this.

Halloween.

In June.

You place it. All of it.

Then, it’s, you can guess, a big failure.

Dust piles up on orange skulls and pumpkins.

Nobody buys it.

Until this angry day in the end of August…

When your good manager says :

“Sales not good, send all this back to the supplier!”.

Well, of course your mind could be full of WTFs.

But it’s not.

You don’t expect common sense from this world.

You just don’t.

You send all back.

This is “normal”.

Because, one week before Halloween…

You install Christmas stuff.

Right?

Right.

That’s the way this world goes.

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Instagram : kloelicious

 

 

“Staggering State” & Observation Amusée du Chaos

Amused Observation of Chaos is an attitude, sometimes the only one you can use. It appears when :

  • You realize you have no more way to fix anything. Or you don’t want to.
  • You probably warned who is in charge, who did not believe you. Whatever.
  • The staggering state needs you to take back control, and you have NO control on the situation, so you begin to smile (well, you can cry, but WTF).
  • It works for a short moment. Chaos and confusion are exhausting. Go away and nap.

 

Bonne journée ! Thanks for reading!

 

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Instagram : azzrak

 

 

Obedient “to the finger and the eye” is the French “beck and call”

“Obéir au doigt et à l’œil” (“to obey the finger and the eye”) is the French way to say that you’re at somebody’s beck and call.

I found out that it comes from “beckon call”, which makes sense, right? By the way, I learned a word : Beckon – “gesture to come”. 

How do you say that in your language? In common use, what’s the radioactivity of “beckon”? Is it neutral like “to call over”? Or does in imply a little slice of servitude? What are the differences between to yield, to comply, to obey, to submit?

What are the dials and levers here? If you’re at somebody’s beck and call, what does it show? Is it about fear? Power? Is it about persons, or systems, companies?

What about the beckoning person? How come this person expects you to act this way? Has he enough power to get you back in “the right track”? Or does he have to understand that “people are not all obedient”? What a shock!

What happens, in a situation where you’re supposed to comply and you don’t? Failure to comply, disobedience, rebelliousness? Why would you? A frontier has been crossed? Did you change? Did you grow up? Has the whole system changed? Did you change your mind? Why?

In what territory to study this? Kingdom? Management? Spouses? Clients/employees? Politics? Parenting? What are the limits of beck and calling?

suviriggs_-____

 

Giberrishing management and other relationships

Erving Goffman explored it a long time ago in books like The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life. I copy paste wikipedia :

Goffman believes that all participants in social interactions are engaged in certain practices to avoid being embarrassed or embarrassing others. This led to Goffman’s dramaturgical analysis. Goffman saw a connection between the kinds of acts that people put on in their daily life and theatrical performances.

So : life in society is a theater.

In relationships, there’s often a gap between an ideal and… reality. It can lead to drama, or to theater : wear a mask. Acting like you are supposed to do.

In management, it’s the same! One day you realize that your manager is managing as if he was believing his sh*t. And if YOU are the manager, well…

Where else?

Everything is fine, right?

Dials :

So what? It can be useful, to be “in peace”!

Where is our theater? What happens when masks fall, and why? Anger? Steam? Change?

Why and how can we become ourselves suddenly, and what would be the consequences?

 

Thanks for reading!

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Instagram : myivoryroot

THINK ABOUT YOUR ART, or how to kill your “I know my job” pinned mindsets

I once knew a teacher who amazed me because she was constantly thinking about her Art, inventing new ways to progress, debriefing almost each day.

Of course I know the tale : Never ask a millipede to explain how he manages to get anywhere. He will tie himself in knots!

In fact, I think that most experienced people do not “think” that much about what they do and how they do it. They do their job! It’s how some teachers teach : “I know my job!”.

Unless you work in an area who needs to be really creative (architects, musicians, decorators), there’s a danger once you are “skilled”, once you finished your student’s life. Danger is : mindsets. “I know my job!”. WHY : because you stop learning!

What I remind from these conversations is a phrase she heard constantly from colleagues : “It’s not possible”. Kids this age CAN NOT read. Well, they can…

Well, that’s common sense, right? If you think “It’s not possible”, it probably won’t be!

Tool 1 : Think about your Art.

In your job, what do you do like a machine? Play the game of debriefing, for once. Ask a friend to help you think. Talk. Learn. One Eno’s Oblique Strategies suggests : “Explain it to your parents”. Detect and discover your mindsets. Some are good, useful. Some not.

Tool 2 : You’re now the helper. If you’re a manager, how will you see the little and big fixed/pinned ideas in your team, the “I know my job!”s? The “This is the way we do it”? Yey, change causes resistance to change. But that’s another article !

Thanks for reading!

#street #shadows #fall

 

The Casualness Shades of Orchestras

I’m reading a book about orchestras. I liked the pages explaining how different do great orchestras really sound from one another, that’s interesting.

Try this article : World Greatest Orchestras

Cultural differences made me smile. Some American or German musicians hired by French orchestras were disturbed by our… frenchness. Instrumentalists are chatting before rehearsals, par exemple, ohlalaaaaa…

It’s a matter of shades, though. Italian instrumentalists think we are much more rigorous… Makes sense, no ?

In an American orchestra, everybody is on time, all the musicians did their homework, and nobody talks. Not a word. Riccardo Muti, coming from… Italy, was a bit surprised by this American “engine ready” effectiveness and once said to the orchestra : “You know, you can talk !”.

The author tries to be culturally fair. American or German (among others) orchestras are fast and effective, and French orchestras need more rehearsals to prepare a symphony, for example.

He says that the result is great, clean, and pretty much always the same in the United States. They do the job ! In France, orchestras are less like a perfect car and more like a living surprising entity. They do the job too, and sometimes it’s becoming amazing !

Leonard Bernstein always loves French orchestras for this reason : they follow his craziness if he tries something unusual. And… the author says than French instrumentalists are very quiet and attentive when the chief in Giulini or Haitink. Errrr…

Yes, I can link this arcticle to this other one, about following damn rules

So let’s say we can, but we don’t !

After all, the Eiffel Tower has no function, other than a symbol. The Eiffel Tower is uneffective.

I think that in France we just like to do things slightly improperly. Yesss we can cross the road out of the zebras, if there’s no car around. We really do that ! Ohlalala…

Lever : This lever is called “Obey” and has two ways. If something’s boring in your project, because it’s clean and right on the road, pull it here. Try something French. Add wine too.

Josef Krips, a great conductor, once said something like “With half more discipline, the French orchestra would become the best of the world”. Maybe you need half more discipline, then. Pull the lever there. Thank you America !

Day off with #orchestra #pluriel
Day off with #orchestra #pluriel

Wrong Way Up and… the game of “finding structures”

OK I’m french. My english is a frenglish, it’s rusty and wobbly, et voilà. Try me, though. I’ll do my best. I promise. If sometimes it’s too bad, just laugh at me or roll you eyes.

“Wrong Way Up” is the title of a Brian Eno & John Cale album. It’s not even the title of a song – and that’s sad because I would have liked to explore its cryptic lyrics to find a good quote ! Eno is a great artist, but his lyrics are délicieusement funny.

Most of us are tinkers
Some of us, tailors
And we’ve got candlesticks
And lots of cocktail sticks

This idea, “Wrong Way Up” – comment dire ça en France ? : se gourrer en montant ? – is a great little simple seed. Let’s pull every string attachée à cette idée :

You made a decision and you act, you move. You are sure it’s a “up” decision, a move for a good change. You aim Victoire et Progrès ! It’s not a retreat, no no no. Up.

You, or somedy else who pokes you, knock knock, realise that there’s a problème. Wrong Way Up. No good. What do you do ?

– You can go on climbing, because you want to explode the glass roof. Or because you’re a nihilist and you like the idea of headlong rush. OK. Go.
– You can try to fix the Wrong Way Up failure by une déviation du mouvement. Bypass the problems. Is it effective ? Isn’t it too late ?? What are the other ways up ? Did you prepare this ? Plan B trajectories ?
– You can just stop and stay immobile between your previous place and your goal. Into the air, in between. Then you’ll have to change something…
– Well, you can go back down but isn’t it a failure too ? Wrong (or Good) Way Down, retreaaaat !
– What about what we could call Incomplete Change ?

 

OK. Now enough paths and decisions. Stop.

Tools :

How to draw a map ? How come a map isn’t appropriate ? Who drew it ? Can you fix the map for later, or for other Ways Up ? What can you do with the differences between the map and the real territory ?

Dial :

What happens when you suddenly realise that what you’re doing since days is totally vain et absurde ? What if you’re kitesurfing or hunting or pray, and suddenly the dumbness of all this activité jumps at your face like a spider ? What happens when you sing on a stage and suddenly realise that you’d prefer write a novel in a cabane au Canada ?

More :

How stupid is it to call a simple failure a “Wrong Way Up” ? Isn’t it just a change of name ? How useful can it be to talk about a concept without its “name” ? Just to find the structure of it ?

Tool again :

Precisely it is. The point is here. Take a little event and find its structure, its skeleton. It will be, then, maybe, usefull to use this little tool to another part of your progress.

That is : If you think “failure”, your spirit is already full of ready-made-ideas. Means you’re “wrong”, you “have to stop”, etc. If you see that failure like a “Wrong Way Up”, you’ll find other ways to get out of this merde. Think weird ! Try other spectacles !

Again : What can you do with the differences between the map and the real territory ?

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