Friday, October 28, 2011

My Thin Rhinoceros Skin

Distrust anyone who wants to teach you something.
~Robert Fripp

I get lots of emails. Most of them are very nice. Some of them are not so nice.

Rhinoceros skin. I suppose that's a common metaphor to say that a person is not overly sensitive or thin- skinned. I am not particularly thick-skinned by any means, but after I calm down from my homicidal state, I can see that most of these disturbingly critical emails and phone calls are pathetic cries for attention. That still does not quell my homicidal rage. Sometimes it rolls off my back and sometimes the audacity is simply jaw-dropping.

Engineers get special communications from know-it-all blowhards who insist that it's our fault when reception is poor. One idiot actually said, "I am an Audiophile (his caps) with a gifted ear." I'm not kidding.
It's all our fault and we deeply apologize for whatever is wrong
with your lousy reception out there in TV land.
One idiot repeatedly told an engineer he had issues and our guys actually drove out to his bleamin' house. Lo and behold, an aerial on his roof was supposed to suffice in this digital age! He wasted state resources, so that he could garner attention from us.

The delightful people I sometimes hear from are not just rude, but condescending.

Classical music listeners are the worst. To believe them, you might think I just stepped off a turnip truck and my best shot at writing my name is an X.

They wish to educate me.

Seriously? I bow to my friends in their respective fields and in no way, shape or form am I the baddest dude in music (or academia), but most of the time, I feel comfortable among my peers. That's what matters most to me.

One college prof blowhard said he didn't want his students listening to me because I mispronounced (in his opinion) a title of a work. I have news for him: college kids are more concerned with hooking up and rolling doobies than listening to public radio or to his terminally dull lectures.

Then there comes the offer "to help."

No thanks, Mr. Bowtie. I'll pass on the tutelage.

It is the utter presumption of superiority that drives my blood pressure into dangerous zones.

The worst of them may be the ex-announcers who sit around and latch on to every mistake. This one guy kept calling me and while he had a friendly tone, I kept catching his little put downs. These conversations continued because I try to respect all callers, but soon the devil came through the mask.  I was a gentleman and never said anything until one day he stated, "I would listen to (xxx station in a bigger city), but I can only get it in my car."

I held my tongue which wanted to unleash, "Then get in your car, motherfucker and quit calling me."

From that day forward, I never allowed his calls to be forwarded to me, only voice mail.

Not to further drink of poisonous thought, but there was one ass from the northern part of the state who made it his mission to piss me off or bring a downer to an otherwise happy week. I found out that this guy applied for my job and was turned down. He even gave money to ensure his position.

Well, he failed to get the gig and punished me for it. Most of all, he wanted attention. A really poisonous person by my reckoning.

Of what then did ye learne?

This is one of many reasons I enjoy my weekends, vacations and a genuinely look forward to retirement. I imagine myself staring vacantly at the ocean on some forgotten part of the Outer Banks. More than slightly blotto from an aged rum and a real guarantee that my inbox will be filled with happy, friendly emails from friends who want to come visit my island bungalow.


Al said...

Dude, there's a lot of poison out there...if it comes your way....don't drink it. Just a thought.

eclectic guy said...

Since that Friday, I have followed the dictum of NOT reading feedback if it has the negative stuff in it. Also, I do not speak to people with agendas; hidden or otherwise. This is not requiered.