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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Ask and ye'll wish ye hadn't

While in conversation with a good friend of mine, I thought I came across an interesting analogy. Of course, for those of you reading this and wondering, "What a self-obsessed arse-hole this guy is," I urge you to consider the fact that brilliance is not necessarily a strong suit of mine. So, allow me to celebrate these gems, or at least what I consider to be priceless examples from a limited intellectual capacity.

So, like I was saying, my friend and I were talking about how things are in life at the moment. We went from state of our lives, to trying to meet up, to the madness that engulfs us in the world around us. Then, we started talking about how difficult it is to get some things done. All of a sudden, I started putting together ideas about how I've always been taught to ask for things because if I don't I won't get them. Still, life has taught me that there are times when polite request, or the rudest of questioning grunts won't get you what you want. You have to be like a bull, and keep at it with such persistence it would appear to be your sole purpose in life. That's when I attempted this reference in the conversation.

me: It's like they did something just because you asked. No one ever does stuff because it should be that have to ask for it, eh?

friend: indeed. and you have to ask for it periodically.

me: Talk about a perverse interpretation of "
Ask and you shall receive."

friend: repetitively

me: "Ask, and we shall put you on hold"

friend: ask repeatedly and you shall receive in small doses

me: "Ask again, and we'll think about it" And then, "Ask at the top of your voice, as you insult my family and threaten to speak to my manager, and you shall receive...first an apology...then what you asked for."


And that just doesn't make sense to me. The number of people who give you nonsense about being sorry because they honestly forgot that you asked them to do something -- in the business world, no less -- is shocking. What's more, the sheepish grin that follows has found me reaching for the nearest rock to smash the cretin's head in! But, I'm not that violent. No, all I do is give them hell every now and then so that they have a fair idea of who they're dealing with...and how much it means to other people.

Not getting what you've asked for happens in so many aspects of one's life here in India, that it's almost like a system of sorts. If you want to get what you want, you'll probably have to define it in obscure terms that touch upon elements of how exactly you don't want it. Now that's painful! But why have to do this in the first place. Why? WHY?!?!?!?

Ask, in as clear a set of terms that you can manage to put together. Then, if you don't find anything happening, go for it and create a small but manageable scene. And if still nothing happens, then be prepared to do some bodily harm.

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