Saturday, November 19, 2005

Personality Tests

I walked into work on Thursday and ran into my boss C. in the lunchroom.

"You have destroyed my life!" she said to me. I froze as did the others in the lunchroom.

"What did I do? I just walked in." I asked helplessly.

"Go check your email." she said with a smirk. My mind was racing - did I say something to the client? did a higher manager ask her to do something?

I went to my desk and M. poked her head in to my cubicle. "You're in trouble. C is really upset with you. Did you check your email."

"I'm still booting up!" I said and drew her into my cubicle.

"What is it?" I asked softly.

"Ok, C. took the The Harry Potter Personality Quiz you sent and she found out she's Lord Voldemort!"


"I'm Severus Snape! That's worse!"

"No, Voldemort is pretty bad." And, so began a day of crazy Harry Potter-Myers Briggs analysis.

C. finally felt better when she found out there was a Draco Malfoy in our midst. She figured it's better to be evil and people know you're evil, than be a snake in the grass kind of evil.

We have 2 Dumbledores, a Hagrid, Snape, Olympe Maxime (Hagrid's half-giant girlfriend). We were wondering if there was a Dobby.

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Anyway, I think these are fun to take and I'm still not sure what I am. I've taken the test before and was borderline ENTJ (Professor McGonagall) or INTJ (Severus Snape!!). I took it again right now and was assigned ENFJ (Olympe Maxime - a.k.a. Hagrid's half-giant girlfriend).

So, I think these are good for fun analysis and we laughed a lot over the full list. I know a lot of businesses do take the MB tests into consideration for team management. In my graduate school project management class, we discussed the value of these tests. It's good to have a creative type person coupled with an organized, deadline-driven type so you can be sure the work would be done on time. Or, you may not want to couple these two together as they could work against each other.

While this was fun to do at work, I was surprised by J. who was "Hagrid". His analysis said he's loyal, hard working, not willing to draw attention so he's underappreciated. I felt that was so true - having known and worked with J. for almost 5 years. This is probably something to which a manager one should pay attention.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Writer's Quotes:
Salman Rushdie
The real risks for any artist are taken. . . in pushing the work to the limits of what is possible, in the attempt to increase the sum of what it is possible to think. Books become good when they go to this edge and risk falling over it. .
A book is a version of the world. If you do not like it, ignore it; or offer your own version in return.
I make no complaint. I am a writer. I do not accept my condition; I will strive to change it; but I inhabit it, I am trying to learn from it.
What is freedom of expression? Without the freedom to offend, it ceases to exist."

VS Naipaul
An autobiography can distort, facts can be realigned. But fiction never lies. It reveals the writer totally.
I am the kind of writer that people think other people are reading.

Hanif Kureishi
I think the point of being any sort of artist is to ask difficult questions, and to write about things that we don't normally speak about.

Arundhati Roy
You know, I always believe that even among the best writers, there are selfish writers and there are generous ones. Selfish writers leave you with the memory of their book. Generous writers leave you with the memory of the world they evoked. To evoke a world, to communicate it to someone, is like writing a letter to someone that you love. It's a very thin line.
For me, books are gifts. When I read a book, I accept it as a gift from an author. When I wrote this book, I presented if as a gift. The reader will do with it what they want.

Anita Desai
…I grew up reading the major English writers. As I grow older I feel less a need to prove my skills. I realize I don’t always have to write in their style.
Leaving India frees one's tongue. Within India you hold back so much. And being part of that life, you're too involved to look with objectivity.

Bubbles (My Poems):
Fleur de Lis
Quebec City, February 1987

“I’ve never seen the ocean,” he says
and she gasps,
almost shaking the salt and sand
of the Atlantic off her hand.
He smiles and toasts to the Canadiens.

She nods

She sees icicles form on lashes,
and a nose tint a pale violet.
She feels the pain as her feet thicken into ice
blocks, like the sculptures gracing the squares.

The cold spikes through her legs
as she hobbles on frosted cobblestone streets
in the wrong shoes and
tipsy from too much wine.
No, it was a kir, a drink that sweetens and soothes.

So maybe not too tipsy,
though a bit giddy from the crispness of
freedom that comes from
crossing borders and leaving boundaries.

The night is foreign and intimate.
Voices in the streets call out
to someone unseen.
She wants to know who they are,
but she already does.
She is one of them,
savoring every ordinary moment.

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This poem is recollection of my first trip to Quebec City as a high school senior. Six of us girls went with Madame Sue Fynan to Quebec City to view the Winter Carnival (Carnivale D'Hiver) in February. Madame Fynan was a whole 26 years old as the adult chaperone and 15 year old girls really pushed the edge. As a senior, I was unceremoniously recruited as her peer and asked to help watch out for misdemeanors. (Actually the 'she' in the first paragraph is one of the girls who was flirting with a local guy and I had to hang around her to make sure she wasn't alone). My travelmates and I had that "Breakfast Club" experience - extreme bonding for four days and then we went our separate ways when we returned back to school.

I wrote this a year or so ago. I didn't want this poem to be about my whole trip, else I'd be discussing crepes and La Bonhomme D'Hiver and all sorts of things. No, this is just about a moment.. a memory of walking on cobblestone street in the cold in the wrong shoes.

Anyway, I've been a Francophile from the time I was 12 and Quebec set my impressions of the French culture.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Bubbles (My Poems):

The Wails in the Autumn Wind
they are a splendor.
Alone, they crumble and
bare their fragility.

Unaware they are torn.
Some fly
Some float
All fall.

The tree stands
Arms outstretched
Palms empty
Fingers aching to hold
You left me, it cries

We didn’t want to,
they rustle.

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The lush trees Nature weaves
wither and shrivel
into reddened leaves

Ensemble, behold the sight.
Alone, it crumbles
Silent, dry and light.

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These are 2 poems I wrote years ago. They're actually two variations of the same theme. I think that was the year that Autumn really depressed me. I'm definitely a spring and summer girl.

Now that it's November (and 70 degrees in PA!), I thought it'd be fun to share.
On the Job Training - Motherhood: 7a
Halloween (and Diwali) Follow Up

We went trick or treating with Annika's best friend Talia and her mom. Of course Annika's best friend would also be a princess (Cinderella) so they were just two little fluffs of tulle and sparkles.

The funniest thing about the girls is how chatty they were! When people oohed and aahhed over their costumes, they twirled, announced the princess name and Annika blurts out "I have glitter on my eyes!" They bumped into another Cinderella, who announced "I have sparkly shoes" and shone her flashlight on them.

Talia and Annika were impressed, but then remembered their sneakers light up so they started stamping their feet to show off.

I was a bit embarrassed when Annika would start asking people "Do you have a dog? I heard a woof. Can we see the dog?" And she petted a few dogs too.

At one house, an Indian man came to the door. Annika peered inside and saw another woman and a grandmother. She accepted the candy and just stood there. I told her "Come on. Let's go. Say Happy Halloween."

"Happy Diwali," she said quietly. The homeowners just laughed and said Happy Diwali too. The grandmother came to the window to see Annika.
Now, she had more confidence and said it louder and I wished the family as well.

Her friend said "What is diw-wali? I don't know diw-wali," as they ran across the street holding their skirts.

"It's an Indian holiday. Not everyone celebrates Diwali. Everybody celebrates Halloween!"

I just loved the fact she knew.

By the way, we had Diwali parties this weekend and Tuesday. Coupled with Halloween, it has been a sugar fest!!

That's the one problem with celebrating Indian and American holidays. Our holiday season began in October with Navratri and will continue until New Years' Eve. It's fun, but exhausting!