Wednesday, October 19, 2005


It seems like my entire life people have not been listening to me. Sure, they hear the sounds that come out of my mouth, but they completely disregard them. It happened to me when I was a kid, it happened growing up, it happens now.

I tell people my understanding of how something works, or how to do something, or what I want, and they ignore what I have to say. They have to hear it from somebody else before they believe it, if it's an explanation. If it's a statement of what I want, I don't get it. What part is unclear? I don't mumble, I don't leave out words, I say exactly what I mean.

Christ, there's a damn good reason some people prefer writing code to talking to people. At least in writing code, you are guaranteed to get exactly what you asked for, and being precise in your statements is what works.

Maybe bluntness isn't what works with people. Maybe people don't want direct answers. Maybe they want their prose wrapped in poetry. Maybe I'm not conveying my message in the right manner. Who knows? It just seems to me that wrapping it in flowery words increases the chance of misinterpretation.

I'm more than willing to help people. If they want my advice, they should take it when it's offered. If not, why ask for it? If I'm not going to get what I want, why bother asking?

I like buying what I want. I hand over money, I get what I want. Period.

This isn't just about me getting what I want, though that's a big part of it. Many times I have tried to help people and gotten blown off. Explanations of why a car got so hot when I was seven, or for a friend to get a business line of credit rather than a loan a few years ago, or ideas for a product very recently. There are other examples, but right there are a few. I want to help.

But don't bother acting like you give a damn if it actually doesn't matter what I say.


Steven A Bristol said...

I'm total with you.

Aaron F Stanton said...

Thank you!

Simon Lucy said...

What was that you said?

Aaron F Stanton said...


Anonymous said...

you are so right about people not wanting directness ... I learned this hard lesson last month when a friend who prided himself on being the most direct person he knew dumped me when I was direct with him. Nobody wants to know the truth.

Aaron F Stanton said...

I'm sorry to hear about that.

I used to get in trouble with my parents when I was a kid for bluntly stating what I wanted. They told me I should be more polite about it, and I told them that would be lying, and lying is bad, right? I want what I want, and that's the truth of it.