Friday, December 4, 2009

The Question Behind the Question

So my current job is about as good as you can expect a temp data entry job to be--in other words, I make enough money to live on (for now; who knows what I'll do once the job ends), it takes under an hour to get there on the bus, and the people there are all fairly to very nice. When I first started, though, I wasn't sure I would be able to take it, because of the very high level of corporate behavioral indoctrination involved in the training--videos of inspirational speakers managing to quote Martin Luther King, Jr., next to B.C. Forbes, on the importance of not aspiring to anything above your shitty station, before launching into descriptions of horrible methods of "going above and beyond" (for no additional pay, of course), inspired by the actions of quite frankly a creepily over-involved mailman, that kind of thing (if you want to look into this, it is seriously called "The Fred Factor" and it is awful). It turns out that once you get through the training, everyone for the most part ignores this stuff (except for the occasional rah-rah meeting, but you get those pretty much everywhere), so all in all the job is borderline tolerable.

Perhaps the bulliest, the shittiest, of all the bullshit was the book whose title might be rendered QBQ!: The Question Behind the Quesion®: Practicing Personal Accountability at Work and in Life: What to Really Ask Yourself to Eliminate Blame, Complaining, and Procrastinating, written by professional white asshole John G. Miller. This 115 page, 39 chapter (work out that impressive average if you dare!) wonder is a marvel of idiocy honestly unrivaled in my experience by anything short of The Barenaked Ladies.

So, over the next few months, my plan (which, you know, who knows if I'll actually do it) is to blog about this book (book blogging, or blooking), chapter by chapter, explaining exactly what is so execrable about it. As I do, I will continually update this post to function as a blog table of contents, and each individual entry will contain a link to this post so as to make crossreferencing easy. Sound good? Ha ha! I don't care if it sounds good!

Introduction: What Ever Happened To...
Chapter One: A Picture of Personal Accountability, part one and part two
Chapter Two: Making Better Choices
Chapter Three: QBQ! The Question Behind the Question
Chapter Four: Don't Ask "Why"
Chapter Five: The Victim
Chapter Six: "Why Is This Happening to Me?"
Chapter Seven: "Why Do We Have to Go Through All This Change?"
Chapter Eight: "Why Don't They Communicate Better?"
Chapter Nine: Don't Ask "When?"


JRB said...

That is some fascinating shit. I can't wait to hear more about it. Employer propaganda is one of America's greatest exports! Thanks for documenting your experience.

Ethan said...

Seriously, if you can get your hands on this book without paying for it, do it, because this shit is hilarious.

You must have been writing this comment right while I was writing about you, by the way. DID YOUR EARS ITCH? Or whatever. Palms?

Another Lawyer said...

I am on the edge of my seat, waiting for the first chapter. Well done, boy! Well done.

Ethan said...

Gawrsh, thanks. I will attempt to live up to your expectations. Mark my words: I will fail.

Anonymous said...

More QBQ commentary! Now! I am hooked after 2 installments