Tuesday, January 17, 2006

To suffer fools

Main Entry: suf' fer
Function: verb Inflected Form: suf'fered ; suf'fer'ing
Etymology: Middle English suffren, from Anglo-French suffrir, from Vulgar Latin *sufferire, from Latin sufferre, from sub- up + ferre to bear
transitive verb
1 a : to submit to or be forced to endure "suffer martyrdom" b : to feel keenly : labor under "suffer thirst"2 : UNDERGO, EXPERIENCE
3 : to put up with especially as inevitable or unavoidable (This one is mine, kids)
4 : to allow especially by reason of indifference "the eagle suffers little birds to sing" — Shakespeare

I'm sure you've all heard the biblical quote (II Corinthians, something) about suffering fools and the more common phrase about one who doesn't "suffer fools lightly". The latter is me. I admit it. I have little-to-no patience for people who cannot think for themselves, who cannot just quit whining and get 'er done (that's for you, Larry) or who cannot visualize the outcome of their stupid actions fast enough to stop themselves from acting. Mostly, I just hate having to explain the same thing to the same person over and over, day after day, ad infinitum. So, I found it particularly troublesome that two different horoscopes today said that I would be faced with these fools all week and that I just need to learn to deal with them.
I am practicing my Zen-like approach to such individuals as we speak. I did not raise my voice or sigh in frustration as I explained for the umpteenth time that, no, you cannot forward fifteen emails to the same person in one fell swoop. Nor did I scream when I had to explain that I was not copied on the Hybrid Super Audio email, and that, though it was mentioned yesterday, I have not been told what I'm supposed to be doing with the information that I do not have. I resisted the urge to throw the letter opener into the back of this same man as he asked me the exact same question as he asked yesterday, using the exact same words, choosing instead to patiently answer him that I am still in the gathering phase of this project which I realize is due Thursday and will have it completed by tomorrow morning.

Now I realize I am by no means an angel here. I can try the patience of Job. The difference, you see, is that I don't have to deal with me. I have to deal with them. And it's going to take a whole lot of patience and a few night caps to get through this week if I'm already at my wit's end by Tuesday. I see a large bottle of London Dry Gin in my future.


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