Friday, March 27, 2009

Over 101 Reasons NOT To Be a Vegan

Okay, this list is tongue-in-cheek. I'm not vegan, but I sure can identify with some on this list, since I'm vegetarian:

Over 101 Reasons Not To Be a Vegan

I cannot tell you how many times I've been asked if I eat fish or chicken. I just don't understand this question. I really don't.

I've even had one person insist that "some vegetarians" they know eat fish and chicken. Really? Who knew? I wonder why these same "some vegetarians" don't just throw pork and beef into the mix, too? I mean, while we're just ignoring commonly-accepted definitions of terms, why not?

Some gems:

67. People you eat out with get exasperated when you try to determine what exactly is in the food you are ordering. (If it were an allergy, it would be fine, but since it's a choice, it's weird.)

69. You are tired of your vegetarian lifestyle being the big topic of conversation at EVERY business dinner you ever attend.

71. When the neighbor found out you were vegetarian after inviting you to a barbecue, he now thinks it's funny to announce to you every time he's cooking some sort of steak, roast, lamb, or ribs for his family.

92. The vegetarian option at the restaurant is a grilled cheese sandwich, grilled on the same grill they're grilling the burgers & steaks on.

93. Relatives who bring Kentucky Fried Chicken over when I invite them over for a meal.

94. Always having to answer "Why don't you eat meat?" In spite of all the reasons I could cite, the truth is that I just don't want to, and I shouldn't have to justify it every day of my life.

95. Being told "You can pick the meat off." In exasperation, I once replied,"Well, for me that would be the same as if I crapped on your food and told you you could just pick it off. Would you?"

98. I occasionally meet people who "used to be vegetarian" but "outgrew it" (ie. began to find it inconvenient).

99. I've come to realize that just because someone claims to be a vegetarian doesn't mean that they actually are. They just eat a lot of vegetables, and somehow don't associate chicken and fish with "meat".

118. Your employer has Chik-Fil-A cater lunch for everyone and can't understand why you didn't "just eat it this once" instead of taking a break to get real food.

134. Because when you tell them you are a vegan in a hospital they will bring you turkey and say, "Some vegetarians eat turkey."

137. Because you can't stand telling one more person that Jell-O is an animal product and having them say, "Oh no it's not."

Monday, March 23, 2009

The Corporate Abuse of Language: Team

It's hardly any secret that corporations often act to subvert and/or completely change the meanings of some terms, at least as part of initiatives carried out via their PR efforts. These are usually aimed at targets outside the corp, though.

The ones I find most grating, though, are the ones that they inflict on the people within the corporation, and not those without. At least the PR stuff you can take measures to actively block - using spam filtering, ad blocking in your browser, and turning OFF your television.

These are meant to target those within the corporation so that workers within the corporation internalize the nonsense being spewed, along with their position within the corporate structure. I'm almost 100% sure this is intentional.

Unfortunately, I cannot just set up filtering for internal corporate memos.

One of those efforts at subversion I find so, so insidious is the way corporations use the term "team". It's "team" this, and "teams" that. Teamwork, team player, blah blah blah...yadda yadda yadda - Goooo Team!

The notion that teams exist within corporations is complete horseshit, and even a child can see through that. With all the constant barrage of internal PR, an adult sleepwalking through life will repeat this horseshit without any trace of irony however. Now that's education.

Real teams would have members which all get compensated in the same way, or at least be conducted as a meritocracy.

Real teams wouldn't allow the buddy system or nepotism to influence the way in which rewards are doled out.

Instead, the "teams" within corporations often have people who even go so far as sabotaging the "team", while still getting rewarded just as much as, and often more than, people actually trying to do their jobs.

The "teams" within corporations often keep net-negative performers, because of those very same reasons: who they know.

And yet, you read the average intra-corporate memo, and it's team, team, team. The hypocrisy and abuse of language just sets my teeth on edge.

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