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December 1997


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ACS staff discussion list <[log in to unmask]>
Steve Cavrak <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 9 Dec 1997 17:30:21 -0500
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TEXT/PLAIN (81 lines)
---------- Forwarded message ----------
        Date: Sun, 7 Dec 1997 11:22:18 -0500
        From: Rolfe Stanley <[log in to unmask]>
        Reply-To: Field Geology <[log in to unmask]>
        To: [log in to unmask]
        Subject: i've been thinking too much!

It started out innocently enough. I began to think at
parties now and then to loosen up. Inevitably though,
one thought led to another, and soon I was more than
just a social thinker.

I began to think alone - "to relax," I told myself - but
I knew it wasn't true.

Thinking became more and more important to me, and
finally I was thinking all the time.  I began to think
on the job. I knew that thinking and employment don't
mix, but I couldn't stop myself.

I began to avoid friends at lunchtime so I could read
Thoreau and Kafka.  I would return to the office dizzied
and confused, asking, "What is it exactly we are doing

Things weren't going so great at home either. One
evening I had turned off the TV and asked my wife about
the meaning of life. She spent that night at her

I soon had a reputation as a heavy thinker. One day the
boss called me in.  He said, " I like you, and it hurts
me to say this, but your thinking has become a real
problem. If you don't stop thinking on the job, you'll
have to find another job."

This gave me a lot to think about.

I came home early after my conversation with the boss.
"Honey," I confessed, "I've been thinking..."

"I know you've been thinking," she said, "and I want a

"But Honey, surely it's not that serious."

"It is serious," she said, lower lip aquiver.

"You think as much as college professors, and college
professors don't make any money, so if you keep on
thinking we won't have any money!"

"That's a faulty syllogism," I said impatiently, and she
began to cry.  I'd had enough. "I'm going to the
library," I snarled as I stomped out the door.  I headed
for the library, in the mood for some Nietzsche. I
roared into the parking lot and ran up to the big glass
doors... they didn't open.  The library was closed.  As
I sank to the ground clawing at the unfeeling glass,
whimpering for Zarathustra, a poster caught my eye.
"Friend, is heavy thinking ruining your life?" it asked.
You probably recognize that line. It comes from the
standard Thinkers Anonymous poster.

Which is why I am what I am today: a recovering thinker.
I never miss a TA meeting.

At each meeting we watch a non-educational video; last
week it was "Porky's."

Then we share experiences about how we avoided thinking
since the last meeting.  I still have my job, and things
are a lot better at home. Life just seemed... easier,
somehow, as soon as I stopped thinking.

Rolfe Stanley
Stanley Computer Center
Fletcher Extension