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October 4, 2015 / thackersam

October 4 – There’s a fine line between clever and stupid

Spinal tapI think I had mentioned before that I have finally been granted a new staff member for my woefully understaffed department. The problem is she is very young, and my only other colleague, who has been with me for years, does not share my taste in music or movies. I was talking to them the other day and had the opportunity to say “These go to eleven,” complete with accent and everything. They stared at me in bemusement, then looked at each other, then back at me and said nothing. It’s not them, it’s me. I need a better environment that is conducive to my knowledge of the arts and sense of humor. After all, how can anyone not recognize one of the best lines from the iconic movie This is Spinal Tap. When the DJs on my radio station say things like “We’re going to crank it up to eleven,” we all know to what they are referring, and I know that they are all younger than I am. Besides the eleven line, and the one that titles this entry, which I’ve loved since the moment it came out of David St. Hubbins’ mouth, my other favorite from the mockumentary is when they talk about having performed a concert on the Isle of Lucy.

So what is this post about? Is it the fact that I can’t communicate with 20 somethings? (“Hey Nineteen”?)Well, I know I have some young blog readers, so that’s not entirely true. I think it’s more about how I am just in the wrong environment, and have been for the past six years. This is no new revelation, I’ve never really belonged here. I actually did like parts of my job once because I basically had to create my department, and I enjoyed the challenge. Plus, I did it well. But it’s time for something new or somethings new. A whole new milieu seems to be in order.

But, I’ve hit a bit of a creativity block lately and am finding it difficult to be clever or even stupid. The motivation has dwindled and not only am I not writing much I’m not exercising much either. The transition from summer to fall was dramatic, zooming from warm and sunny to cold gloom in no time. And you know I’ve got stuff to do, kind of important stuff that’s adding up and adding to my inertia. I hope it’s just a weather thing and I will have a more pithy post for you next week. I equate myself to a slug or a sloth, rather than a stiff.

Btw – In order to try to pluck myself from the doldrums, I had to hear me some Jimi Hendrix Are You Experienced? It’s not on the Ram 20 list, but it helped. As did Bruce’s The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle, which is on the list. If “Rosalita” doesn’t do it for you, you may be a stiff after all.

And luckily the sun came out around 1pm and Max welcomed it by going belly up (in a good way) in a patch of sunlight on the floor. His owner was most pleased as well, and even though the weekend was kind of a bust, perhaps the work week will go a little smoother due to the intake of the vitamin D, and an apartment that isn’t so chilly.


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  1. me and Razoo / Nov 27 2015 9:17 pm

    Me and Razoo hears ya, Sam. We used to have to be clever AND stupid on a weakly basis. Music was a great writer’s unblocker, but also listening to Vin and Jean Shepard, watching Monty Python, and reading Asimov, Bradbury and Clarke. Shake up the grey matter (don’t stir!). Witch leads to our third point (our second wasn’t that important): Treat your new staff member like your Padawan. She obliviously needs help developing her brain, and you can guide her. You’ll learn each others language, plus shaking up her grey matter may help shake up yours. PS: Happy Birthday!

    • thackersam / Nov 30 2015 1:14 am

      Thank you for the birthday greeting, M&RK. I do remember your unique blend of stupid and clever to which I both laughed and groaned. I still have my copy of Fahrenheit 451, and may have read an Asimov short story once in college, but I don’t know who Clarke is nor what Padawan’s significance is other than it has something to do with Star Wars. However, I will take your advice and both lead and learn, if that’s what you are saying. For all I know Padawan could be the name of a pack mule.

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