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Monday, August 27, 2012

On the loss of Smitty!

       Robert Smith...I will forever have an empty "Smitty" shaped hole within my heart. Losing someone so special is unimaginable....so I pushed away the urge to worry and lived in a fantasy world where Smitty would survive his rapidly declining health and would live forever.  Barely 15 years of age, now that was 40 years ago, I met my forever brother by another mother "Smitty".  After a "traumatizing" move to a new house across town, for every ounce of change traumatizes a 9th grader, I noticed a house, particularly busy, bustling with beautiful boisterous boys just a few houses down the street.  I interrogated all my "new" friends, from my new high school, relentlessly...because when asked on any particular day, "relentless" could be one of those "one word descriptions" that I would choose to describe myself. At last, I discovered someone who knew him only to find out later, that I had met him before through this particular friend, a Jr. Varsity Cheerleader on my new squad. We had been friends at Aquatic Club (one of the olympic sized private membership pools) for years.  So there it was set up...to meet the clan of new guys down the street.  Deborah Lewis (Debbo) Deonigi agreed to introduce me to the wild bunch and Smitty immediately took me under his wing.  He told me who I could date, and who I couldn't.  He accompanied us places and often watched our back and was always there and we felt safe.
     One of  his favorite stories was the surprise 18th birthday party I threw for him.  He spoke of it again the last time I ever saw him. What a bright and shining star lights up our skies...for I forever hold his image in my eyes!

IF by Rudyard Kipling


I received this on a graduation card from my mother.  I have read it and loved it, but it seems that only now, do I truly understand it.  Now, I wish I could have lived my life by these words, as she must have desired.

 

If

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream---and not make dreams your master;
If you can think---and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build'em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings---nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And---which is more---you'll be a Man, my son!
Rudyard Kipling

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Resume' Obsolete! Should social media dictate who gets the job?


    "The Truth is Out There"....seriously?

      Is it really "sane" to expect to obtain accurate and reliable research on someone by examining them via "SOCIAL MEDIA"? Is it that easy for one to just GOOGLE for a complete and in depth report on a human's life, work experiences, values and/or potential? Do intelligence gathering companies who sell the information they steal from social media sights adequately compile "the truths" about someone? What is the formula for calculating fact from fiction from social media posts, comments, photos, tags, mentions and other conflicting  information floating in cyber space.  Perhaps it has become time once again to educate users of the internet that not everything you read on the internet is TRUE!

     CNN (and perhaps others) recently reported  "The Resume' will soon be obsolete!" http://www.cnn.com/2012/07/11/tech/social-media/facebook-jobs-resume/index.html
Their information included using Google and the many social media sites as an easily accessible avenue to"simplify" the interview, lessen the need to "check the references" in the employment process provide a better portrayal of ones accomplishments thus creating a much BETTER employment process just by using GOOGLE! I pity the employer who believes that the internet and social media will become the place to recruit, interview and solicit personal and performance references of applicants in the future.
     {SCENARIO}
     Perhaps an interview search is being done....and this is being done to evaluate someone's competency as a candidate for a job?...or for documentation in their current job performance? Is it moral to seek out social media sites to check up on someone's personal activities to determine their suitability to excel in a position, determine their interests, predict their future behavior and performance based on "friend" posts and use this to determine to their livelihood?
     Just GOOGLE them?  Isn't that smart? (badly needed sarcasm inserted here) because the INTERNET is so astute at keeping people of the same name and different deeds separated, preventing untruths and vindictive comments by people of questionable character. They also excel at filtering mistypes, mistakes, misspeaks?  Prior to internet access mistakes in one's "permanent record"  required hard work. It was the days of snail mail in an old fashion paper clip world. Regardless of such difficulty, I  found it necessary to dispute my own NAME countless times and sending paper work to disassociate myself from people whom others had attached to my GOOD NAME. People, I never knew nor ever heard of. Suddenly I was shown living places I had never been, with names which had "shown up" as family, neighbors or former employers on my credit report.  I was even saddled with a bad credit rating from someone with a "close but not identical" former name. This Pam was even connected to different social security number was obviously a different person yet they insisted it was me? How did that even happen?  I had even paid this Pam's bill 3 times hoping she'd just go away...the third and final payment was made by my husband, yet the bill kept popping back up over and over.  7 years, $1400.00 and his deep male voice later. AT&T (the debt collector) finally listened, checked into this "previous name" and APOLOGIZED!  Personally, I would have preferred my money back! How could someone else s idiocy be allowed to continue to plague an innocent? It was a difficult process back then...look at the ease of internet access today!  Again, I forgot, incompetence is only annoying not damaging and the internet lists only truth?
      I care about this topic because I am unemployed. What about my resume'? Having been adversely affected by America's loss of interest in seasoned and experienced educators, I have remained unemployed over 2 years now and have resorted to funneling through ALL my former bags of varying tricks to obtain gainful employment in many different fields where my Higher Education Degrees and my personal experiences would deem me competent, Yes, I have reached out on the internet to seek such a brave new world. I did indeed "boldly go where no generation had gone before" into this cyber-wonderland. It's true! So Go ahead... just GOOGLE  "the truth is out there" or is it more than truth or less than truthful?
      If the resume' with it's correct names, information and education should be rendered obsolete, I must admit a need to  press "enter" with a bit more caution. After such a disturbing inference by CNN I have become greatly disturbed.   I have seen Facebook friends that I have known for decades lower their guard and post things in anger, elation and perhaps in emotional response that perhaps they did not quite thought all the way through....and others have clicked the defamatory "Like" to something they found humorous or even something that seemed to make sense, or appear self-explanatory at the time...Later however, when reviewed or when read by others the written word simply did not reflect the intonations, allusions, metaphors or communicate the intended message at all!  I have truly learned nothing is 100 percent correct, Homonyms and hyperbole are REAL be afraid of the written word! Unlike vampires within the "Twilight" written words exist to shine embarrassingly where somethings truly are eternal....... via e-mail, social media or the internet. Perhaps, there should be an "oops my bad" hot link with which one could apologize after offending someone or a "I had no idea my action would permanently impact your livelihood and reduce you to near poverty?".... when one had absolutely no intent to do so!
        Be careful America! From now on the internet is not ours. In all our current and future postings let us not slip up, let down our guard...accidently press "REPLY TO ALL" in an e-mail nor underestimate the fierceness of and forget due acknowledgment to  "auto-correct" for its outstanding ability for humiliation! That thing has sent even my husband into a quandary.  Embarrassing side note, did you know or forget that Spell check is impotent against the power of homonyms, hyperbole and other real words you  mistype?  So, Cautiously, press enter, it may cost you a job.
      "You have been tagged in a photo!" One's normal response is OMG! So, let's flip through a visual trip through the album's of social media. Does a picture paint a 1000 words?  Obviously some speak volumes, but what about the vast majority?  Perhaps they just tell part of the story.  My father, a WWII Veteran from the US Navy, truly had "seen it all".  He would have said..
" Hold your horses, There are two sides to every story, even on a photograph!"  What an excellent piece of prose to ponder for those who heavily participate in social media choosing to take literally every sloven word as "correct" yet  failing to take themselves as seriously as those lurking and can't wait to embarrass and destroy the delicate psyche of others.  Sadly, it is true that people maliciously send pics with hopes of them spreading viral. Sent with catastrophic results, some have ruined many a political career or pathetic means of someone simply wishing to earn enough money to keep a roof over their head.  Oh NO NO! Let it not be said, there are people posting on the internet who LIE, posting and tagging innocent (yet appearing as compromising photos) in MALICE, or that some users have mastered Photo-shop!..... or pre-meditated a carefully crafted post that would end up causing the loss of someone's job, relationship or precipated a suicide!  Also, has it occurred to anyone that our 15 year olds are becoming a generation of  exhibitionists and  blackmailing paparazzi's? Google some of those pics.  The mother and Anthropologist in me does indeed feel a need for concern.  They are too young to understand implications of such life-long and permanent damage.
     Even within Youtube comments one becomes vulnerable to hostile assault and access by the whole world ..(because you like the Beatles better than the Stones?) oh let's just say its almost equivalent to a life within a "fish bowl". It should make one feel exposed and extremely uncomfortable. I have been accused of being too private to the point of agoraphobic, too passive, too eager to please, too helpful, too vocal, too opinionated LOL or too much this... not enough that....definitely NEVER enough of this or that or something. I remember such scrutiny before in a pathetic real job "fish bowl" fed by new grad paranoid egomaniac's. I once swam complacently while pursuing a new career unaware that comments, and "likes" would quickly humiliate me into series of self- revelations.Where do they make fun of employees and humiliate them by referring to them as FISH IN A FISHBOWL! ... you'll never find that out from me if one day the "Truth is out there" it didn't come from me... BUT Could you find out the REAL TRUTH if you GOOGLE ME! I'll tell you now, I loved working at Sea World of Florida!  It was the best job I ever was blessed to spend 5 years doing and I regret ever leaving there to pursue an MA and teach public school. NOW, that I made that visibly plain, Sorry if  and when .....my Google seemingly appears a bit light on information, negative actions and lacks misleading photos. I am truly am so straight laced I haven't even had a speeding ticket since 2002.  My only regrets lie in the many things I WISH I had done but refused to do because of my own self imposed morality. Those regrets lie within my heart and are not to be found on the internet [HINT] Good advice.
      Unless you are mind reader or I have previously explained what each and everyone of my LIMITLESS poetry collection truly means, I'm pretty sure your wrong. The 70's and 80's were a great time, I wish I would have chosen a braver, more fun, ambitious path. As I observe today's youth flagrantly and unabashedly posting all over social media it looks fun and sometimes I think I blew it. However, I worry for most of them, others I hope drown in that condoned corporately cultural "fish bowl". However, as my parents suggested, I lived to be able to look myself in the eye every morning and those of everyone else I have ever met as well, My parents believed, living such a life would lead to true harmony and happiness. They prayed that I would never ashamed of what I would see in the mirror or who I became. I hope my own children continue to live their lives in such wisdom from their Grandparents.
       GOOGLE YOURSELF! Today, is not the mirror you should fear.  It's tomorrow's notification that  "a pic of you has been tagged." or "you have been mentioned in a post by Sir Spams Alot" or his friend whom you can not imagine. The post you make is not your own!  Be careful it is a cyber jungle out there.  The job market is tight and competition is fierce enough to bring lies out of the mouths of FB friends...Do not follow, walk beside your friends.  It is for these reasons and the fact that I have value ......and that I have values (along with the need of a job)..that I just bow out of Facebook...or....Twitter or........ maybe NOT.  It's too late anyway my footprints are everywhere ...Google me....I guarantee the boring part is true.