Precision…

I’ve been told on a number of occasions recently that English is a precise language and we must use it precisely. I’m good with that. I like precision. I like to use words to cut through the clutter and mean exactly what I say. Except the problem is, most people don’t. Most people use the language as just another avenue to be vacillate and be throughly indecisive.

Don’t be surprised then, if you ask me “Do you want to do Activity X?” and my response is an immediate no. I’m answering your question honestly and directly. No, I do not want to participate in Activity X. In fact, generally I’d rather stake myself on an anthill covered in honey than engage in Activity X. However, if you changed the question slightly, by saying “Will you do Activity X?” or a more directive “You’re going to do Activity X,” I’ll probably shrug, possibly roll my eyes, and get on with dealing with whatever X is in our little equation.

See, the social contract depends largely on people doing things they don’t want to do. But when you frame the question as whether I “want” to do something or not, you’ve given me the option of saying no, because that’s the honest answer. I spend most days doing things I don’t particularly want to do, so when given the option to avoid adding one more to the list, I’m not sure why anyone would be surprised when I opt out… because frankly life is entirely too short and it’s already too filled with random pointless activities that we don’t really want to do in the first place.

Indecisive much?

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With the lives and economic livelihood of 20,000 odd people in your hands, being a decisive leader is clearly important. While I would never criticize those empowered to make difficult and important decisions, I will cheerfully provide you with a timeline of events and let you draw your own conclusions about how the story unfolds.

 

Tuesday, January 21st:
– 7:57PM: Opening is delayed 4 hours. Liberal leave is not in effect.
– 8:02PM: Correction. Liberal leave is in effect.
– 8:44PM: Opening is delayed 2 hours. Liberal leave is in effect for Wednesday, January 21st.
– 8:46PM: Opening is delayed 2 hours. Liberal leave is in effect for Wednesday, January 22nd

Wednesday, January 22nd:
– 5:32AM: Opening is delayed 4 hours. Liberal leave is in effect.

I’m tempted to add an entry for 10:00AM, when I’m projecting someone will make a decision to shut it down for the day, but since that hasn’t happened, I’ll stick to reporting the facts as they happened and let the future tend to itself.

It seems to me that over the course of ten hours, we waffled, vacillated, and ended up more or less right back where we were at around 8PM yesterday. I’m not saying anyone is indecisive much, but the simple facts of the case are what they are.