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Great (?) conversations

I had two interesting conversations recently. Here’s how they went.

Conversation the first

Friend [1]: Thank you.

Sam, puzzled: For what?

Friend: My boss’s talk.

Sam: What about that talk?

Friend: You made no curmudgeonly comments and asked no difficult questions.

Sam: I only do that when the comments and questions are deserved.

Friend: Really?

Conversation the second

Colleague [2]: … and three sophomores.

Sam: We don’t use the term sophomore at Grinnell. I believe it’s because calling only 1/4 of the students sophomoric is undercounting.

Colleague: It’s not just the students.

Colleague: Whoops! I’m generally more polite than that.

Sam: [Laughing]. No, that’s fine. I deserved that.

In the first case, it was an open talk. They had to let me attend. In the second case, the colleague had invited me to join the meeting. That colleague gets what they deserve [3].

Should I change? In the first case, no. It’s great that I strike terror in the hearts of some administrators. In the second, maybe. I should be more polite and less distracting in meetings [4].

[1] I think of this person as a friend. I hope they think of me as one, too.

[2] The person is a relatively new colleague. I hope that they will also become a friend.

[3] In an unexpected turn of events, they invited me back for another meeting.

[4] Or perhaps I will succeed in getting banned from all committees on campus [5].

[5] It hasn’t worked so far.

Version 1.0 of 2017-05-11.