Sunday, July 22, 2012

"Let Me Know When the Weird Shit Happens" The Sunday Collage

Back in the old days, I liked to use that particular phrase^^. I coined it. I save it for special occasions. Usually my use of that phrase has been restricted to a bizarre day or two and centered on my old policing career. A Ph.D candidate killing a bunch of people in a movie theater would have qualified for the use of that phrase. Originally, that phrase came about when I saw a guy passed out and drunk, with his head on the accelerator and driver's side door wide open, truck rolling ever so slightly, pants down around his ankles with his feet dragging on the pavement. The dude had passed out taking a leak by the side of the road. Instead of arresting this guy, the cop I was with dumped him off at the county line. I was a cadet. 

That was the day I coined the phrase. Let me know when the weird shit happens. So when a guy walks into a movie theater...

You wonder, "At what point did that young man say to himself...you know, I think it would be a good idea to go down to the cinema tonight and kill a bunch of innocent, random people after booby trapping my apartment." "Yea, that's what I'm gonna do, that sounds like fun."

People make the strangest assumptions. On one blog, a writer wrote that this guy was "set up" and that it didn't make any sense that he surrendered peacefully to the police and then told them about his booby trapped apartment. Why go to the trouble of setting booby traps only to disclose them to the police?

To that I would say...never pretend to understand the mentally ill. Do not apply your brand of rationale or normalcy to them. Like a wrong sized shoe- it does not fit. Perhaps after realizing that you have killed and wounded a whole theater full of unarmed and innocent people- you actually have some level of remorse. You might even have been shocked into consciousness. Maybe you even tell the cops about your booby trapped apartment. Mentally ill people do nor subscribe to mainstream belief systems. They leave the rails. That's why we call them mentally ill.

And as it goes...

This week was bizarre. Everyone I talked to seemed to be comprehension impaired. It took me 7 days and calls to five different plumbers to fix a simple clog. At one point, I was beginning to think that plumbers had quit plumbing. In fact, I fired one guy before he even started. I didn't like his demeanor. He was one of those guys who acted as though I had this bizarre plumbing that only he could navigate and then he wanted to replace sections of pipe. When he was late for the estimate and then late for the repair, I called him up and said adios. The next guy fixed both of my issues for 69 bucks and it took him about 45 minutes. Seventy bucks was 1/4 of what the other guy wanted.  I had the same experience trying to get some motorcycle tires I had ordered and delivered-put on my bike. When I called one shop, the owner told me that because I didn't buy the tires from him- his insurance company refused to insure him. Too much liability he said. I wonder if he actually thinks people believe that shit. The reality is- is that if I had an insurance agent telling me how to run my business and which decisions I could make- I'd probably be getting a new insurance agent.

Oddly enough, the BMW dealer here in Boise apparently does not use the same insurance agent. They gladly put the tires and some new brake pads on for about 150.00.

I found myself in a couple of brief arguments with people- not because I do that on purpose- but because a couple of the folks I had been talking to simply had agendas of their own- agendas which they could not set aside to actually comprehend what I was saying. That type of non listening event, the "I refuse to comprehend what you are saying moment" occurs mostly because rather than listening- your target audience is conjuring up their next talking point. If all they are focused on is a series of talking points rather than listening- you aren't going to get anywhere with that. And since I was often guilty of that insanity in my past life- I understand it now. It is a simple problem to diagnose. If you are talking and your target audience ignores everything that you are saying- fails to address any of your issues- you can rest assured they are not comprehending what you are saying. At that point, it's time to engage in a tactical retreat. One other thing. I have people in my life who want me to carefully listen to them. So I do. Very often I have found that the people who want to be heard the most- aren't very good at listening themselves. That's ok. When I realize that the verbal transaction is not mutually beneficial, I don't force the issue any longer.

Always pick happy over right. They are often- mutually exclusive.

On Thursday, every driver in Boise seemed to be talking and texting on their cellphones. I dodged drivers and near collisions all day. I was actually happy to go to work. I picked my car over my bike for the 20 mile trip. Work was like a sanctuary. I would not have been surprised to see a driver come crashing through a wall- cell phone in hand.

On Friday, I watched as the banker controlled illusion of healthy markets and healthy currencies continues. How long can this go on? I'm not sure. People are actually pretty predictable. Many years ago, I would find hugely overvalued stocks and buy put options on them. Most of the time- that strategy failed. Not because I was wrong but because people are slow to catch on. People don't just react to things just because you think they should or because your option expires on the third Friday of this month. People act when things become so obvious that they can no longer afford to ignore it.

When people can no longer afford to ignore things this time around- I think some really weird shit is going to happen.

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