Monday, February 9, 2015

Monday Musings --- or Rant?

Ok, honestly it's a rant.  A mere couple of hundred years ago, to be considered "educated"  a person (ok, usually a man) had to speak another language, as well as Greek or Latin, had to be able to write poetry, know about literature, it was the age of Enlightenment - had to know about various newly discovered scientific principles, keep up with political events, etc etc. In all fairness to today's humans, he was probably also well to do and had servants to see to the basic needs of life.  But that isn't what this rant is about.

Today, we as a species, know far more about the universe and things in it, than those people ever could have imagined.  We have advanced medicine, engineering, science, psychology etc.  But as individuals we know less.  We're losing that basic curiosity to know what and why and how.  Oh, we're really good at who,  turn on the television or glance a the magazines and tabloids at the grocery store and clearly we are interested in the whos.

Liberal Arts education was developed to create "well rounded individuals"  who had a good basics in many different areas.  These people, and the "Bachelors of Arts"  are supposed to be flexible enough to deal with many different facets of the modern world.  I know as someone who went to school for a "bachelors of Science"  many of these people were perceived to be Nerds and Geeks.  The questions... so you really don't have to take a foreign language? ... so you take Freshman comp, humanities 1 and 2 and then only need 3 classes total from literature, history, art, music etc??... you only have to take one social science??  outright asking - don't you want to be "well rounded"?

Well now, just over 30 years since I picked a college , I'd say the well roundedness has not been achieved.  I think it's all the overfootnoted papers and essays they wrote.  To get a good grade, they had to justify their instructors opinion.  They spent 4 years of college without provable right and wrong answers , and it taught them how to kiss up to the person in power (instructor grading) by substantiating that person's opinion.  It taught them that as long as they knew the answers to the test questions, they were smart. Their version of what - what does the teacher think, their version of how - how does the teacher think this happened, and their version of why - because the teacher or the book or whatever says...

If you're wondering what has me upset about all the useless drone robots I'm surrounded by, it's actually a few things.  First, have a new person at work, who working part time while she goes back to grad school.  Who seriously asked me how many lines on a tape measure was 3/16.  This was after she asked how much to cut off of each side of a blind to make it 3/8 smaller.  And was very sure that 3/16 was BIGGER than 3/8.  Another, who is going to school part-time to be a NURSE, who could not understand how the vagina, could both have natural bacteria AND be a self cleaning organ, and how steam cleaning said self cleaning organ was probably bad because it was bound to change the dynamics of said bacteria.  Then a customer, who insisted we put "DR" in front of their name - even though our computer system DOES NOT HAVE A SPOT FOR TITLE!!!  (sometimes I wish it did, when I'm guessing if the person I'm calling is male or female, because I'm not familiar with their name) SO I made her first name Dr. Margaret.  could not understand that when buying something like carpet that comes in specific widths, I needed the room dimensions - not the square footage.  I tried several approaches to explain that 240 is great if her room is 12 x 20, but if her room is 10 x 24 she won't have enough carpet.  She then got mad when I said that a WALK IN closet can't be 4 square feet.  And that is she can hang a standard hanger in a 4 square foot closet - that would imply that her closet is 2 feet wide and she might get 10 hangers on the rod. And the man who was with her could not grasp the difference between a special order - you look at all the pretty samples of stuff that exists in a vendor's warehouse somewhere and pick the one you want and I order it.  And a custom order - you want a color between that blue and that green which unless you want like a million square feet, my vendors aren't going to make for you.  He just kept saying well just put it in the computer in the order we want between these two colors!!

 I guess this rant is just about all the people who lack any sort of cognitive function who are allowed to walk around in society and annoy those of us with brains.    

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