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What a nice weekend. After ringing and the_alchemist's birthday… - Sally's Journal
September 19th, 2005
10:12 am

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What a nice weekend. After ringing and the_alchemist's birthday drinks on Friday, I fought off the hangover just enough to tidy the house before the housewarming party on Saturday. So we had both a tidy house and a goodly party! Although the second did have slight effects on the first, clearing up glasses is so much easier than unpacking boxes of randomness, so progress was made.

(as an aside, if you feel you'd like to be invited to parties and don't seem to be being, do let me know. I'm useless at collecting email addresses, etc, and being invited is necessary but by no means sufficient**** for being welcome!)

Party was nice. Was a bit overwhelmed by so many people (after so long locked in the Whittle lab :) ) and slightly paranoid that they were all pitying me* but everyone was lovely. Didn't get to talk to half the people I would have liked to, but people seemed to be having fun. Did have brief spell of worry that everyone was only there because they were madly in love with kaberett or emperor, but I can cope with that :)

Sunday went to church, and then piqueen came up to see me, which was lovely. I don't see enough of her, and it was good to talk some more and get my head round things, although I think I will soon be in danger of wallowing in my misery if I don't find something else to talk about soon. (plinthy, it would be great to meet up. I seem to be monopolising your piqueen and stunningly failing ever to see you. I should plan to come down to London at a convenient time...) Then I cooked a vegitarian gluten free dinner** for the_alchemist and robert_jones, which wasn't too odd, and played settlers and articulate, which was great***.

And now it's Monday, and I have Things to Do. At some point I should write a post to LJ about what job I actually want to do, and let you lot absolve myself of any actual decision making. Although the answer may be "any job I can get..."

-----

*Why is the idea of being pitied such a bad one? Is it just stupid pride on my part? Surely the fact that people are extra nice and kind to people because $really-bad-stuff has happened is a good thing, and one doesn't have to continue pretending it's all OK. But maybe people only cope by pretending they're in charge of their life and have chosen to be where they are, in which case pity is a challenge, because it's either a "your choices were crap" or a "you're not in control" and has strong overtones of "you're a failure".

** Aubergines with tomato, onion and garlic for starters, stuffed peppers with cashewnuts and mushrooms (with potatos and veg) for main, and a weird meranguey roulard for dessert. I was quite pleased, mainly because I'd made it up in a stress in Sainsburies 2 hours before :)

*** As the_alchemist pointed out, M is a poor winner, an observation that I had never noticed before (assuming it was mearly being a poor loser) but which now I have been shown it is worryingly true. But rather amusing. And I love him lots anyway.

**** Update, in light of comments. Yes, I'm a muppet, and I ment to type sufficient, but not neccessary. The alternative is quite amusing though....

(32 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments
 
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From:simont
Date:September 19th, 2005 09:31 am (UTC)
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ITYM "sufficient but by no means necessary"!
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From:cartesiandaemon
Date:September 19th, 2005 09:36 am (UTC)
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*puff* *pant* *screech to a half* What Simon said.
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From:geekette8
Date:September 19th, 2005 09:42 am (UTC)
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Bah, you both beat me to it! :-)
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From:atreic
Date:September 19th, 2005 10:40 am (UTC)
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Dammit. Just a tad sleep deprived at the moment :)

Still, at least it made lots of people laugh...
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From:hmmm_tea
Date:September 19th, 2005 10:28 pm (UTC)
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Ah, just makes you wonder what else people need as well as an invite....
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From:emperor
Date:September 19th, 2005 09:39 am (UTC)
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Your [Unknown LJ tag] should probably be the_alchemist :)
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From:ewx
Date:September 19th, 2005 09:54 am (UTC)

Perhaps it's fortunate that none of your friends are BA Baracus

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Would it sounds better if it was "support" rather than "pity"? (I'm not very fond of the latter as a verb either...)
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From:arnhem
Date:September 19th, 2005 03:30 pm (UTC)

Re: Perhaps it's fortunate that none of your friends are BA Baracus

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Perhaps it's fortunate that none of your friends are BA Baracus

Although I still don't see why he's got such a thing against metasyntactic variables ...
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From:cartesiandaemon
Date:September 19th, 2005 10:12 am (UTC)
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*hug* I don't think pity is the right word either. It was awful (you've heard sonic's opinion of the lameness of the engineering society, right?) but not a time for speaking in hushed tones, a time for party and hugs and knowing you're going to beat this.
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From:gerald_duck
Date:September 19th, 2005 10:20 am (UTC)
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Thank you for a fantastic party; I would love to be invited directly rather than indirectly to any future ones, if you're offering.

As for pitying you… I'm new to your journal and unaware of any reason for pity; if I somehow managed to come across as being nice, then that was plain ol' friendliness. (-8 As ewx says, pity is just a negative word for support, or even sympathy. If I find out why you're needing sympathy, I'll be sure to send you some!
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From:feanelwa
Date:September 19th, 2005 10:30 am (UTC)
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People hate being pitied because if people are only being nice to you because something terrible happened and don't actually like you, the moment it either stops happening or they forget about it, they might be mean to you and make it all crap again. Then you get set up for another cycle of getting to a point where you just about trust people again only to have them all bugger off just as soon as it gets alright again.
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From:the_alchemist
Date:September 19th, 2005 11:46 am (UTC)
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I don't like being pitied even by friends I'm close to and know are there for me whether I'm unhappy or not.

I think it's more to do with power dynamics. Good people like to be equal to their friends, bad/insecure people like to be superior to them. No-one likes to be inferior. Pitying a person is the best way to put them in the inferior role - the other ways (telling them they're rubbish, for instance) are not as good because morally, you're very obviously putting yourself in the inferior role, even though you're making yourself superior in other ways.

So some people pity others because making others weak makes them feel strong. Others do it because they can't help it - they have a strong sense of empathy, and pity is the natural result of that when something bad is happening to a person. But that still feels bad to the person being pitied, because the effect of making them inferior still exists, even though the intent doesn't.
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From:atreic
Date:September 19th, 2005 12:12 pm (UTC)
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Yes, but if one was perfectly Good and Honest, then it would be accepted that sometimes you are inferior to people, and sometimes superior, and that this isn't a Bad thing, but just because people are different...

I'm not sure how much I agree with "Good people like to be equal to their friends". If I wish to be a Good Person, and I know someone who is "lesser" than me in some regards (maybe they are homeless, or Bad at Maths, or something else terrible like that :) ) what is my correct response? I could not be friends with them, because they are not equal to me, but that's obviously wrong. I could try and make them better at the thing I think makes them inferior to me, but that might not be possible, or they may genuinely have no need or interest in the thing I think they lack. I could try to think that the things I think are "lesser" are actually not important, but that can rebound and leave you doing down your own achievements (and indeed those of others) - and it *is* good to work hard to own a house, or be good at maths. I could try and take a holistic view that we are equal as people, but in certain areas are superior / inferior to each other, which I think is the right answer, but then you're admitting that your friends *are* superior / inferior to you at some stuff...
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From:the_alchemist
Date:September 19th, 2005 12:28 pm (UTC)
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I wasn't trying to argue that it's wrong to pity people (I don't think it is), just to explain why I think people hate being pitied. 'Pity' is a well-adjusted response to your friends being homeless or bad at maths, and annoyance/anger/sorrow/ickiness is a well-adjusted response to being pitied for being homeless or bad at maths.

The 'good' and 'bad' people bit was just my feeble attempt to speak feanelwa-language - nothing much should be read into it. And I certainly didn't mean that good people should throw themselves into a fit of worry and angst when their friends aren't equal to them (either in specific things or over all), let alone that the should go to any great lengths to fix matters. I meant that when they fantasize about ideals they prefer things like 'all my friends who want to be are famous and well-respected actors in different and complementary ways' to 'all my friends who want to be are professional actors, but I'm the most famous and well-respected one.'
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From:atreic
Date:September 19th, 2005 12:46 pm (UTC)
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Oh, that makes more sense. Thanks :)
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From:hmmm_tea
Date:September 19th, 2005 10:55 pm (UTC)
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Will try phrasing this all again, as having read what I wrote the first time it wasn't at all what I was meaning. Argh! words! who needs them anyway? waste of time if you ask me...

Anyway, what I was trying to say. Yes, you can consider inferiourity/equality/superiority in a particular aspect, but how does that reflect on the relationship of 2 individuals as a whole? No two people are equal on every particular aspect, so what makes them equals?

Surely even if they are inferior to you in a certain respect they could easy turn out to be far superior in another aspect which you may not even have considered and vice versa. So perhaps everyone is equal and unequal at the same time. In that, people are superior/inferior to each other, but as we can never know the complete personality of another individual (or even oneself...) we never have enough information to make a full and valid judgement about this.

Or perhaps I've just had too much to drink at work today and am just waffling...
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From:hmmm_tea
Date:September 19th, 2005 10:56 pm (UTC)
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hmmm, still not sure that's what I was meaning to write, sounds more like waffle to me....

Oh well...
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From:cartesiandaemon
Date:September 19th, 2005 01:02 pm (UTC)
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Yes.

In fact, Sally's first footnote seems to be increasingly accurate.

PS. It was nice to meet you. By the way, that's "Catriona", right? I don't know why I couldn't cope with pronouncing that :)
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From:robert_jones
Date:September 19th, 2005 11:12 pm (UTC)
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Nah, feanelwa's right, you're just freakish like that, because you have an obsession with mentally ranking everyone you know.
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From:plinthy
Date:September 19th, 2005 11:00 am (UTC)
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> it would be great to meet up.

That would be lovely. When can you make it down? I could take a day off work.

>I seem to be monopolising your piqueen
That's okay, I need all the help I can get.
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From:piqueen
Date:September 19th, 2005 02:02 pm (UTC)
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Oy!
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From:plinthy
Date:September 19th, 2005 03:29 pm (UTC)
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:-)
Love You.
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From:oedipamaas49
Date:September 19th, 2005 11:16 am (UTC)
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And it was a very nice party.

Thanks.
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From:fluffymark
Date:September 19th, 2005 11:23 am (UTC)
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Dear lovely Sally,

Next time you have party I will attempt not to be a total muppet and actually manage to turn up.
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From:arnhem
Date:September 19th, 2005 03:36 pm (UTC)
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Why is the idea of being pitied such a bad one?

I think there is an analogy with jealousy.

Jealousy has overtones of "I wish that person weren't more fortunate than me", but alternatively one can think "isn't so-and-so lucky" and be glad about it, and pleased that they're happy.

Pity sometimes has negative connotations of sense of superiority, but a slightly different notion is that of "feeling sad because someone is not having as good a time of things as one would like" (sometimes combined either with a sense of wondering how this could be improved, or sadness if one feels one can't help).
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From:kaberett
Date:September 19th, 2005 03:43 pm (UTC)
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Does it make it all better if I confess my undying love for you? :p

*hugs*

Thanks. It was lovely. :) I even managed to be a bit more sociable this time- maybe *next* time, I'll actually *succeed* at networking properly... :p
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From:atreic
Date:September 19th, 2005 03:49 pm (UTC)
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Much. Then not only am I greatly flattered, I also get all your groupies in love with me by the transitivity of love. (What do you mean, love's not transitive?)
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From:shortcipher
Date:September 19th, 2005 08:03 pm (UTC)
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*giggle*

'twas an excellent party, thanks for the invite, and I'd very much appreciate knowing about more of the same.

Being a little far away, I won't always be able to make it, but.. well, you know I'm in the area a lot. :-)
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From:lockymclean
Date:September 19th, 2005 09:42 pm (UTC)
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Firstly, *hugs* for nice words of comfort in my own LJ :-)

Secondly, upbeat job-hunting tips:

1) Make an effort to re-read your CV every week and see if it can be improved. Sounds weird, but it almost always can be. You never know - it may be the slightly odd variation which appeals to one employer.

2) Keep working at it hard. My housemate Pete said that "looking for a job is a full-time job", and early effort will reap rewards when it comes to balancing books in two months' time and so on.

3) If you are considering a slight career change, scrape the barrel for every skill under the sun from every bit of work you ever did, because employers will need to see skills before considering someone just out of university.

4) Try not to get frustrated when employers demand that you have "at least 2 years' experience in a similar role" when you have more degrees than their middle management tier. Employers are narrow-minded, it's an arse, everyone knows it, and you just have to hope you get in somewhere. You will though, eventually, because there are still enough sensible people left in this world to realise that BA Hons (Cantab) is worth its weight in gold.

And 5) I hear that the Cambridge University Careers Website is very very good.
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From:robert_jones
Date:September 19th, 2005 11:19 pm (UTC)
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Thank you for dinner and games. I'm a bit worried that "necessary but not sufficient" was a dig at me, but I'm probably being paranoid. I don't know who kaberett is. I know who emperor is, but I'm not even sanely in love with him, I'm afraid.
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From:atreic
Date:September 20th, 2005 12:22 am (UTC)
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No, I can guarentee it was a genuine typo and not a dig at anyone. You win paranoic of the day award though :) It is always lovely to see you, although I feel bad monopolising you when you're in Cambridge. I'm glad you're not in love with emperor, as that is my job :)
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From:ixwin
Date:September 21st, 2005 07:34 pm (UTC)
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I don't know what the answer is on the pity question*, but I've often wondered the same thing about 'victim' (as in people who prefer to be called a rape survivor than a rape victim or whatever).

*though I think it might be something to do with the difference between people feeling sorry that you are hurting for things that aren't your fault (which I don't mind at all) and people feeling sorry that you are hurting for things that are your fault because of being weak or lacking in ability or whatever (which I mind because I don't like people thinking I'm weak or lacking in ability even when it's true).
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