An Uneasy Silence

The highlight of today was that my boss gave me a cookie. Not just me–’cause I’m really not that kind of special–there were trays of them. Plenty for everybody. I’m pretty sure they were distraction cookies. (Here. Have a Cookie. Just don’t talk about politics in my business.)

The scary part is that it worked.

It’s been a weirdly quiet election, at the break-room level.

What is that?

Avoidance? Lack of communication? Distance? Resignation?

Not just today. The whole campaign. People who did nothing but razz each other four years ago have been… unnaturally quiet this year.

People I didn’t know were capable of being quiet suddenly are. And have been. And…

It seems wrong.


  1. Reply

    Fear of starting a contentious argument I would guess. Well, now that the election is over, it will be interesting to see who is not afraid to voice their opinion.

    • Reply

      I don’t know. There have been plenty of arguments in the past, and some of them got pretty nasty. My personal thought is that the American Primary system–which requires only a tiny percentage of votes to get a nomination–results in a lot of apathy on both sides. No passion, no arguments.

  2. Reply

    Maybe the realization that no matter what choice you make, it’s wrong? That said, your boss has the right idea: keep potentially contentious (and possibly bloody) arguments out of the workplace. “We have to work together, let’s try and get along.”

    I think you’re spot on with the primary comment above. Just two candidates for an office leads to people choosing “the lesser of two evils.” Do that enough times and you end up with an election like the one we just had.

    • Reply

      I think that in order to see the “right” choices, we have to move beyond a football mentality of “my team” vs. “their team” and start looking at “our” system. The problem being, of course, that the winners at any given time don’t want to change the system, and there aren’t enough losers to do it.

  3. Reply

    Really? Because they’re blowing up Facebook. I can’t even go there because I’m tempted to block 50 to 70% of my “friends.”

    • Reply

      That’s one of the benefits of face-to-face interaction with people who know you’re still going to be there next week or next year. Facebook–and the internet in general–tend to have a screaming into the void quality, where people forget that they’re building relationships with people, not an audience. And small preferences snowball into larger ones. I’m not in a battleground state, or anything, but I am struck by the quiet I see IRL.

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