Home > baseball, politics, work > an engaging world series of chutney debates

an engaging world series of chutney debates

Watching the world series and my brother is telling me about those big braided necklaces that so many players wear. He says they have bits of metal in them and baseball lore has it that it improves the game, “an ionic baseball stitch braided necklace”. Baseball is full of magic and superstition. I remember in my Magic, Witchcraft & Religion class in college we read a piece on baseball magic. The anthropologist compared baseball magic to Polynesian fishing magic. In the communities studied there was lagoon fishing and deep sea fishing. Lagoon fishing was pretty safe and relatively easy and had little ritual. Deep sea fishing was uncertain, dangerous and had a big pay off. Deep sea fishing had lots of taboos and ritual and magic tricks to guarantee safety and success. When you look at baseball players there is little ritual and superstition around fielding where percentage success is in the high 90s. But batting has lots of ritual and magic tricks when you’re 1 out of 4 or 1 out of 3 if you are a superstar.

Mostly I don’t care because my team is out. I could root for the Cards living in Missouri but I like the Texas Rangers. They’re just more of a ball team and less an assemblage of hard hitting free agents. I was actually more into the debates last night even though I don’t have a dog in that fight either. Overall I was pleased with the debate better then some of the past ones with less sound bytes and more real answers. Some of the sparking annoyed me. Tonight’s Tribune had the picture of Romney putting his hand on Perry’s shoulder which I used as an example of what not to do in a staff training I put on today. Unless you want someone to punch you in the nose.

I called it “the ethics of engagement” and it came off pretty well. I laid it out on a graph that I developed for another training with Bond Strength on one axis and Bond Integrity on the other. High Bond Strength and High Bond Integrity leads to engagement. Strong therapeutic alliance with your client but you’re still separate like two gears interlocked where we get that metaphor. Strong bond strength and low bond integrity leads to enmeshment, an unhealthy emotional attachment. High bond integrity low bond strength is what I call Arms Length Professionalism which is what I am afraid is taught out of fear of enmeshment. Low bond strength and integrity I call Case Failure, client drops out or is otherwise unsuccessful.

It was a nice framework to talk about how to engage and how not to enmesh. I also touched on transference and counter-transference and normalized those feelings and talked about their need to be managed not eliminated. It was a little draining though when 1/2 hour later I had an 1 1/2 group to do. three hours of presentations in quick succession wore me out.

It was my late day and in the AM I got out and got the stuff I need to make green tomato chutney. John talked me out of green tomato jam. The recipe looks good and being British got us started talking about the metric system. If it wasn’t for Reagan we would be using it. It made us wonder if the kids are learning it.

Categories: baseball, politics, work
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