Monday, June 7, 2010

A Story About a Family

(This is the "story" I told at the June 7th Board Meeting, under "Other Topics.")

Last time
At an earlier Board meeting I spoke about “butchery masquerading as bargaining and deception masquerading as good faith.” I had us look at the numbers: the heart of the contract -- the proposed, unfair salary schedule.

Then I waited... and looked for change...

And nothing came...

So on June 7th, I was back again.
Why am I back?
The Contract: It's Personal.
It's a family matter.
A speech didn't bring change, maybe a story will...

A Story About a Family
Some say that Lowell Joint is like a family, and it is.
Some say it's run like a dictatorship, and that it has been for decades.
But in the past... it was run by a Benevolent Dictator, a dictator with a big heart.
But things seem to have changed and so...
These days the kids in the family are upset.
The family is dysfunctional... and there are rumblings/speeches/stories.

Tight Times
Tight times put stress on families, but sometimes they just highlight what's been going on for years.
Most family struggles surround two topics: kids and money.

Hmmm... What do kids want and need?
Kids want two things: fairness and safety.

Kids want Fairness
More chores and less allowance? That's not fair!
Pretending to be nice in front of the neighbors: students and parents. That's not fair!
Having to make small talk instead of real talk when we pass in the hallway. That's not fair!
And for our birthday present? A manual from the DMV?

Kids want Safety
We get scolded by Mom for missing chores, while Mom wasn't there to do hers? That's not fair!
Mom makes us change bedrooms because we don't do what she says.
Some of the kids just disappear... Exiled? Laid-off? Forced resignations?
And I hear Mom got a lawyer to help rework the family contract! Oh, no. That can’t be good.

Money is tight
Money is tight, but Mom controls the purse-strings.
No money for our allowances, but Mom and her Directors get raises!
Mom makes charts and speeches and blames the State economy... but what’s really going on?

What can the kids do?
So the children complain to Dad: “Dad, Mom's being unfair and mean!”
So Dad says, "Okay, I'll talk to Mom" but nothing changes.
The allowance schedule stays the same.
And behind close doors... things don't change... the tyranny continues…

So the kids wonder...

The kids wonder about Dad
Why doesn't Dad stand up to Mom and make her be nice and play fair?
Is Dad afraid of Mom?
Is Dad too unconcerned to find out what's really going on?
Or is Dad in cahoots with Mom?
Does Dad really believe everything Mom says and none of what we say?
Mom is hurting us, and Dad won't do anything about it?

The kids wonder about Mom
Why does Mom hurt the kids behind closed doors and act like every thing's okay?
Why does Mom parade the kids in front of the neighbors and pretend every thing's okay?
Why don't I trust Mom to tell the truth or listen to others?
The kids wonder about ourselves
Will we be punished for complaining?
What will happen to us when no one is looking?

Maybe I need to tell the neighbors what's going on...
What did that DMV manual say? In the back...

“The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.”

The King practiced tyranny, so the colonists made a list for all to see!
A list of abuses published on the world-wide-web for all to see?
Would people connect-the-dots?
Would the tyranny stop then?

Don, Why not just give up or shut up?
It's a family matter.

The Contract: It's Personal.

Because if a speech and a story don't change things...
...maybe a public list will.

Maybe then we call all connect-the-dots and see what's really going on in the Lowell Joint family.

“To criticize is easy, to do better, may be difficult.”

Life is a process of on-going improvement.
I’m a problem solver, but I’m not sure what the problem is, and
I’m afraid the problem may be bigger than the current contract...

The future is just ahead, so let’s change it!

1 comment:

  1. Loved this thought-provoking post.
    Your writing style is excellent. :)
    Following this blog,too.
    I'd love if you'd follow CUT AND DRY publicly, (if you don't mind).


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