It’s worth taking the 5 – 10 minutes it’ll take you to give this one a read. Really. Click here, or on the image below to read. See you on Little Friday Eve!
I saw this on kottke.org and thought I would share, if for no other reason than that I might remember it, too. (This is an excerpt from a 2012 Michael Lewis made at Princeton University’s Commencement exercises.)
I now live in Berkeley, California. A few years ago, just a few blocks from my home, a pair of researchers in the Cal psychology department staged an experiment. They began by grabbing students, as lab rats. Then they broke the students into teams, segregated by sex. Three men, or three women, per team. Then they put these teams of three into a room, and arbitrarily assigned one of the three to act as leader. Then they gave them some complicated moral problem to solve: say what should be done about academic cheating, or how to regulate drinking on campus.
Exactly 30 minutes into the problem-solving the researchers interrupted each group. They entered the room bearing a plate of cookies. Four cookies. The team consisted of three people, but there were these four cookies. Every team member obviously got one cookie, but that left a fourth cookie, just sitting there. It should have been awkward. But it wasn’t. With incredible consistency the person arbitrarily appointed leader of the group grabbed the fourth cookie, and ate it. Not only ate it, but ate it with gusto: lips smacking, mouth open, drool at the corners of their mouths. In the end all that was left of the extra cookie were crumbs on the leader’s shirt.
This leader had performed no special task. He had no special virtue. He’d been chosen at random, 30 minutes earlier. His status was nothing but luck. But it still left him with the sense that the cookie should be his.
This experiment helps to explain Wall Street bonuses and CEO pay, and I’m sure lots of other human behavior. But it also is relevant to new graduates of Princeton University. In a general sort of way you have been appointed the leader of the group. Your appointment may not be entirely arbitrary. But you must sense its arbitrary aspect: you are the lucky few. Lucky in your parents, lucky in your country, lucky that a place like Princeton exists that can take in lucky people, introduce them to other lucky people, and increase their chances of becoming even luckier. Lucky that you live in the richest society the world has ever seen, in a time when no one actually expects you to sacrifice your interests to anything.
All of you have been faced with the extra cookie. All of you will be faced with many more of them. In time you will find it easy to assume that you deserve the extra cookie. For all I know, you may. But you’ll be happier, and the world will be better off, if you at least pretend that you don’t.
My total Lenten score was ….
It could have been better. More often than I would have liked, I used moving as an excuse, when I could have used it as a reason to REALLY put in more effort. The 8 promises I made, however, remain on my daily to-do list, and I plan to keep after them as a way of life and not just something I did for 40 days. That was the goal, after all!
It’s today! Did you know? I didn’t.
I’m sure I’m forgiven for my oversight, as I was changing batteries to prevent beeps in the night. (See what I did there?) I’ll share two, if that’s okay. This one, my perennial favorite which I’m not sure why I like so much, but I just do. I sometimes recite it to myself before I go to sleep and you’ve seen it here before:
Chills, I tell you. Then this one, shared by my Facebook friend, Lottie:
Nature and being outside, moving, walking, thinking are on my mind right now, I suppose. It’s been a while since I had a good soul-clearing walk, and now that I’m about to start working again, I don’t see an opportunity for walking — really walking — in the near term. I am, however, looking for little walks to keep me centered and moving forward (literally and figuratively). May the road rise up to meet all of us!
Tomorrow is a new day and the start of a new week, so I’m looking forward to bringing up these totals!
Got cold brew in the fridge, and meals prepped through Tuesday, so it should be a good start, at least.
I mean … what? Just when I was feeling all good about the day and getting ready to incorporate Hygge into my life, this craptasticness:
Oh, Modonna Wilkinson! Look at you trying to turn a lovely, lively and fun post about International Women’s Day (AND KNITTING, FOR HEAVEN’S SAKE!) into a way to shame folks who stand up wanting to be heard? I was all set to respond to her comment, but then thought that I’d not want Neighborhood Fiber Co’s feed to be besmirched by further antagonistic back and forth commentary, so I just loved the original post and moved on.
But, I still felt some kind of way about that snarky, misogynistic comment. Then I went to look on Modonna’s Facebook page. (She’ll need to change her privacy settings, probably, if she’s going to keep up with her bullshittery.) Once there, I decided that she wasn’t worth the effort. She and her ilk are on the way to extinction, so best to let her go her way and for me to keep on keeping on.
I can’t deny that she has a point in that I (and many of my friends, colleagues and family members) do want to be treated equally. Therefore, I HAVE been working today. For 6.16 hours and expect 8 hours of pay, because that would put me at parity with my male counterparts. That seems fair.
Or, maybe lightening reading. As in lightening up? Punny. Still working on final details for work and trying not to stress about waiting for the papers to be signed, so I turned to Amazon for help. Why be stressed out when you can study up on how not to be stressed out?
These are currently winging their way to me today:
The Hygge book comes with a solid recommendation from one of my favorite people in the world, Staci Perry. I think she may have put me on to Fika as well, but I can’t remember, and can’t be bothered to check because I am trying to live stress free! Happy Little Friday Eve!