A story from the radio.

May 27, 2017 Leave a comment

I was listening to a story on the radio about Dr. Kona Williams.  She is Canada’s first first nations forensic pathologist.  It was a wonderful story that started with a little girl who loved to figure things out and ended up with her being a doctor.  Within this story there is a more important and sinister story:

On the radio she talked about encountering racism from two fellow medical school applicants while waiting to be interviewed.  There is a chance those two applicants have become doctors themselves and are viewing their patients through a bigoted lens.  First nations patients already have to deal with negative assumptions being made about them when getting health care and adding a couple more bigots to the mix doesn’t help; I bet it will shorten some people’s lives.

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A thought.

May 27, 2017 Leave a comment

Yesterday I listened to a story on the radio about a first nation doctor and it made me think of another recent medical story about a Saskatchewan nurse who was fined for unprofessional conduct when she complained about medical care relatives received.

When a criminal won’t inform on their colleagues we gripe about the culture of silence.  When a medical professional is in the same situation it’s called being professional.   In both cases those who do inform are often despised as finks.

My thought is this:  Of both groups, whose actions or carelessness destroy more lives?

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Reminiscing about the best deadpan I ever saw.

April 18, 2017 Leave a comment

A coworker’s husband had a bunch of tools stolen and it made me think:  Once I was loading a large break bulk shipment onto my truck in Langley and talking with some of the yard boys who were helping:  The subject of people using handicapped parking spots when they didn’t need to came up and I shared a hope that those people were seated in the same section of Hell as tool thieves and pedophiles.

One of the yard boys stopped me, “HEY!” With an absolutely straight face he asked, “don’t you think you’re being kind of rough on the pedophiles?”  It was wonderful deadpan and drove home the point that tool thieves aren’t well liked.

If you think you’re being offered stolen tools you may be tempted to either buy them or punch the fence in the mouth.  Don’t do either of those things.  Call the police.

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Breakfastnomics

February 25, 2017 Leave a comment

I’m eating a late breakfast of French toast and thinking about the giant loaf of bread on the cutting board and Giffen goods.  These are items whose demand rises when its cost increases in contradiction to what you’d typically expect with products we consume.

Bread has been used as an example of a Giffen good but the water mellon-sized loaf of bread I bought cost about 1/10th of a minimum wage worker’s hourly pay so I think bread prices in this area would really need to skyrocket before it would behave like one.

One notable thing is that it’s such an inexpensive item that it can become a substitute good for a lot of foods that aren’t remotely bread-like.  It has been the cause of weight gain at a couple points in my life.  It definitely wasn’t gluttony…I’m somewhat sure it wasn’t gluttony…How about this:  I’m of the opinion that it wasn’t gluttony.

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Why you’re doing something.

February 1, 2017 Leave a comment

I was recently talking to a business owner about problems they had with an employee who recently quit.  They said that there were a few occasions where dismissing the employee would have been justified but they felt sorry for the the person and kept them on in spite of the issues.

I flat out asked if they were running a company or a soup kitchen.   I don’t mean to sound cold blooded but I have never believed that jobs fix broken people.  I believe in helping people and that people who are trying to fix themselves need the income, routine, and accountability of a job but if they’re not working on themselves too then it is just a waste of time; prolonging the time until they hit rock bottom.

It made me think of my time working for The (Jim)Pattison Group.  There was a story going around about how each month the lowest performing car salesman was dismissed.  I remember asking a mid-level manager about that rumour.  He said that whether the story was true or not, an employee who was doing poorly was wasting their own time as well as the company’s and the sooner they moved on, the better off everybody would be.

At the time it felt like I was having the facts of life explained to me by a shark but it made sense to a point.  There was no denying the logic of the argument the manager made but only to a point:  It would be a shame for an otherwise good worker to be let go for having a bad month.

 

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A Thought While Shaving.

January 10, 2017 Leave a comment

Whenever I shave I start my moustache in the middle so if I died suddenly nobody would, under any circumstances, find my corpse with a Hitler moustache.

If you do find someone who died while shaving and had that distinctive facial hair, give them the benefit of the doubt and assume they were thinking of Chaplin when they did it. Your memories of them will be fonder for it.

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A funny moment of realization….and the one that followed.

January 2, 2017 Leave a comment

I was thinking back many years about a time I was at work and went to the bathroom in the middle of my lunch beak.  When I returned to my lunch and took a sip of my coffee a coworker broke out in laughter and said, “HA-HA!  I spat in your coffee!”

The guy was a notorious verbal joker so I jabbed right back, “then drinking this is sort of like kissing you,” and took a long pull from the cup.  He got quiet.  Really quiet.  At that moment I realized for certain he was homophobic and was starting to suspect that SOB actually did spit in my coffee.

I don’t know why the joke bothered him.  He knew I’m not homosexual; he even knew my taste in women.  What bothered me later on was that I didn’t even consider the possibility that he had actually tampered with my coffee until I thought he was homophobic.  What kind of screwed up reasoning is that?

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