Thursday, June 22, 2006

A little skit and some explication

This was a small skit I wrote on a friend's blog. Since then, I thought I better explain a bit more about this because I see this as an opportunity to make a point (don't I always?).

1: apple is a fruit that...
2: orange is a fruit too.
1: we are talking about apples.
2: are you saying that orange is not a fruit?
1: Where did oranges come from?
2: from nagpur, you get the best oranges.
1: no, no. I am asking why did you bring them into the conversation?
2: why shouldn't I? can't I express my opinion?
1: but I was talking about apples.
2: and orange is a fruit too...
1: yes, orange is a fruit but...
2: so , you agree. I am right, you are wrong!
1: (sobs incoherntly)

There are times when you feel really frustrated talking to certain individuals (or groups of people) who refuse to stick to the narrow window of the subject of what I am trying to say and bring in points of their own that is totally unrelated to the topic. When you try to bring them back on track, they become hostile and stick to their guns that what they say is valid and I must accept what they say or bring in a counterpoint. If you do try to debate with them on what they decide is the subject of the discussion, your original topic is lost and there is a high chnace that they might jump to something else again. Also, if you end up in a situation where what they say is actually reasonable and you accept it to be so, they would consider the entire argument closed and that there is nothing more to discuss and their opinion on a very broad topic has been accepted.

The thing about these individuals is that they refuse to listen to anything that we say and are so sure of their 'rightness' that there is no room for any other arguments in their minds. They would dismiss it without considering it and even if they are unable to argue against it. And then they jump, much like Battlestar Gallactica that needs to be one step ahead on the cylons. Which is why I become apprehensive about conceding a point to them in any way because they delude themselves into believing that they have managed to convince me of a view contrary to something I began with. And when I refuse to do that, and I try to bring them back to the topic, they become hostile (again) and call me intransigent and other such things.

It is not really a futile thing to argue with such people because when you start arguing with them, you realise how easy is it for your words to be misunderstood and that makes you improve upon what you write, how you present your veiws and what stratergies you adopt to push across some idea. You may never convince them but you might convince others who have not taken sides and who do indeed have an open mind. But having said that, it is hard to not abuse them because they really are morons (couldn't resist).

It is obvious, in the above skit, who represents my point of view. After all, I am the alpha.

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7 comments:

un-alpha said...

> After all, I am the alpha.

Fortunately you did not say "alpha and omega" :>)

MadHat said...

Ah! but that's implied... :D

Cosmic Voices said...

Nice post! Often faced such situations.

"that makes you improve upon what you write, how you present your veiws and what stratergies you adopt to push across some idea"

Really true.

Amit Srivastava said...

well said.. i have myself felt it many a times and had to leave discussions (if i call them so) in between (did they ever start?) with a feeling that there should be some protocol for discussions/debates. But, many don't see a reason for it. I also have a fav skit similar to urs.

Two guys reach an intersection.
Guy1: We are on GT Road and should take left from here.
Guy2: No, I think we should take a right turn.
...
Actually, both of them are standing on GT Road, but one of them wishes to goto Delhi while the other to Kolkata. This is what happens when there is no consensus on what is to be achieved.

MadHat said...

@amit: That is a good point. With the reservation issue, the policy was floated and then the debate started on it with people first choosing sides and then working out the arguments. Which is why that really went nowhere because they were going in different directions.

But, practically, is it really possible for everyone to start with a clean slate? I guess we need to understand that any such issue that concerns such a lot of people will always be imperfect...

Amit Srivastava said...

@madhat: maybe it is difficult and so is the issue. Alot of thought needs to be put in before anything is done. I fail to understand the craziness involved.
As far as choosing sides is concerned i am pretty much undecided even at this stage. Have been trying to find-out/think abt what is it that we ultimately want.. where do we currently stand and what could be the feasible solution(s).. but this crap office work :(

MadHat said...

Alot of thought needs to be put in before anything is done.

I agree completely!

I fail to understand the craziness involved.

Well, maybe because too many people have become emotionally involved with the issue. Probably because it affects their lives.

As far as choosing sides is concerned i am pretty much undecided even at this stage. Have been trying to find-out/think abt what is it that we ultimately want.. where do we currently stand and what could be the feasible solution(s)..

Well, you are a rare one. Good for you.

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