What I’m Learning: Each time there is a situation in the kink community where someone gets called out for ongoing predatory and abusive behavior, I am always fascinated by the group reactions. I almost feel like I am a social psychologist or anthropologist observing how people are reacting, how reactions affect the group, and how it affects the community as a whole. I always wonder what is underlying that is driving those reactions. Today, I learned about prosocial gossip. Prosocial gossip involves sharing negative judgments about a third party, but where the shared information could protect the recipient from antisocial behavior or exploitation. Prosocial gossip was (and still is) important in culture – and has been shown to be critical in allowing for the formation of larger groups of people. While I am not always a fan of "call out culture", I also believe labeling all "gossip" as drama is also dangerous. Learning how it has an important place from an anthropological and sociological standpoint definitely makes me look at how we need to be more precise in how we label gossip as good or bad. I’m sure there will be more to come on this topic.
What I’m Listening To:
Another big shout out to the podcast Armchair Expert and specifically their interview with Monica Lewinsky, which they released yesterday. I’m sure some people have stumbled across her Ted Talk (which I recommend – go here). Hearing Dax talk to Monica in a more intimate setting definitely brought even a further understanding how we should look back at that situation with more compassion to here than society had at the time. Don’t get me wrong – she accepts responsibility in her part of the whole situation. Her choices were not good. For me, I realized listening how horrible it was that both parties went on a smear campaign to paint her and the relationship she had with Clinton in a way that favored their position. Also, by using her in their game, the isolation they forced upon her was horrific. The fact she came through it is amazing honestly. Go download it and listen.
What Is Amusing Me:
I work with a guy who, especially when trying to make a point, will spew off a long winded explanation filled with fifty-cent words. Whenever he does this, I usually smirk and start counting them. I guess I have joked with him too often that we need a bingo card of these words when in meetings with him. He decided last Friday that he was going to make one. "I don’t use many words like that" he announced. Then we started making a list for him, and by Monday morning, he had a list of 60 words. (And as we pointed out, it is incomplete.) Wednesday morning, I came into work and he handed me four variations of the bingo cards he made using this site. Yesterday in a meeting, he went off on a long-winded rant on maintenance of customer information specifically addresses in our large business application. I started writing down the words, and when I hit 10 (and could see the table was glazed over), I shouted "BINGO!". The room erupted in laughter; he got flustered as I derailed the rant; and we got back on track. Hey, who knew a bingo generator could result in so much fun as well as being a useful tool in a meeting!
Quote I’m Pondering:
This week’s topic from The Angry Therapist was about validation and people pleasing. And the quote he gave was:
"What the superior man seeks is in himself; what the small man seeks is in others." – Confucious