I Am An Idiot

Organisational Idiot
Greetings all. Steve here once again to give the very best in organisational help and support, excepting the fact that I have no idea what the hell I'm talking about. I have not always known this about myself, actually. I used to operate under the assumption that I was actually a fairly together guy and that I just kept running into unforseen obstacles which kept me from getting my poop in a group, as it were. In recent days I have come to accept that this is simply not true. I am, in fact, completely out to lunch. I am almost totally without any capacity to organise myself and I lack even basic practical reasoning skills. For all intents and purposes, I am an idiot. Although this is a relatively new concept to me, it probably comes as no surprise to most other people.

For example, I mentioned this to my girlfriend, Meghan, and Meghan just gave me one of those looks that women give men, sometimes, ya know, the look that says, "Honey, I've known that about for a long time. Just go wrap yourself in bubble wrap and go lay down. I'll get you a cookie." She cut me real deep with that look, she really did, but I think she may have something there.

I was in my Egyptian history class yesterday and my professor, a capital fellow, a German man of both great professional skill and personal charm, began talking about how prehistoric Egyptians made flint handaxes. I never once in my entire life up until that exact point thought about how prehistoric Egyptians made flint handaxes. There is a good reason for this: I don't give a wet slap about how prehistoric Egyptians made flint handaxes. I mean, let's be serious here. The ancient Egyptian cutlure produced many incredible things out of stone and a paleolithic Swiss Army Knife is hardly the most interesting among them. But that didn't stop my professor, who went on in great detail and for some time about the making of these damned handaxes and one interesting detail did emerge: Prehistoric Egyptian men made handaxes to try to pick up chicks.

Hmm, interesting, I thought. Why , I wondered, in the name of Saint Swivin's nostrils would a bunch of prehistoric men want to sit around making piles of handaxes, when they had so much else to do? Because, as it turns out, prehistoric women were extremely attracted to men with big handaxes. {Snicker} This surprised me. I don't know what I thought the criteria of attractiveness among cave men was, what would make you the Brad Pitt of cave men, but handaxes never even occured to me. But it turns out that being able to make a good handaxe meant that you had your act together and that you would be able to provide for your mate. Even though men these days don't get dressed up and go down to the club and stand around in corner making handaxes (unless they're hoping to meet a nice girl in the asylum), there are still clear indicators of the degree to which you have your act together and I fail out on almost all of them.

I am a triple threat, personality-wise: I am a raging intuitive, meaning I think in metaphorical, relative and disconnected terms. This is fine if you're doing a conceptual art project, but less helpful if you're trying to meet a deadline at work. Also I'm dislexic, so I get numbers backwards, I get things mixed up, I spell things wrong, and so forth. And finally, I'm a man, which, as any woman will tell you, immediately puts you at disadvantage with most activities that don't involve scratching yourself, where men (not to brag, I'm just telling the truth here) excell far beyond women. It's not a natural talent, it's just that we put the time in to really work at it and get it right. Practice makes perfect.

But as dynamic a skill as scratching yourself is, it doesn't help me very much in everyday life. And that's all I've got! Here I am, bumbling around town, the dyslexic, intuitive male, forgeting things and getting things backwards and all mixed up and just generally having a rough time of the everyday details. Come to think of it, I'm lucky to be employed!

Now, I hear you asking, "Steve, am I too an idiot?" This is a difficult question, partly because I don't know your inidividual situation and partly because there are in fact several distinct types of idiocy and it can be hard to distinguish between them. You can be a general idiot, an idiot with regard to specific things, a general maniac or a total nimrod, all of which impare workplace efficiency in different ways. I've chosen to be an artist where my disorganisation and confusion are regarded as marks of intelligence, but that's a subterfuge that won't work for everyone and so the problem must be addressed. In the next couple of weeks, I'll give a checklist to determine whether you are an idiot, what type of idiot you may be and what type of treatment programs and self-help books exist to help you overcome this problem.

Well, that's all of my thought processes I'll inflict on you this week. Until next time, keep your pen on the page, and your handaxe close by.

Steve Sharam

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I, too, learned a great deal

I, too, learned a great deal about my true nature, and decided to channel that lunacy into a career that draws strength from what others consider shortcomings: software QA. The ability to not only generate but artfully apply chaos to any given software system has allowed me to thrive, professionally, and provide a true service to my contemporaries. After years of fighting this true nature, it felt good to let it bloom forth and shine on its own.

Oh, and the stack of self-help books makes a great monitor stand.