Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The mariner at home: giving back

In a little over a week, I'll be heading home for what I feel is a well-deserved break. Somehow, I manage to always forget that I'm far more pressed for time and stressed when I'm home than at work. Being surrounded by the people I care about is enough to make up for the negatives. Anyhow, I'm looking forward to getting home.

This month I'm taking part in an educational conference (a frightening concept to those who don't know me well, I suppose) when I get home. Once upon a time I taught intercultural research skills to students who were preparing to carry out comparative sociocultural and socioeconomic research. My sub-specialty was gaining access to sensitive information- what I might today, in my greatly coarsened state, call "How to get what you want without the use of kneepads."

As I said, I've coarsened. I'm only dipping my toe this time. If my skills have rusted to the point where I can't help these kids, I don't want them to pay in the process. So, this being a pre-departure conference, full of last-minute tips and preparation, I'm planning on only being there to play Good Cop/Bad Cop and see how I do.

Somewhere deep inside me is still a practical-minded biologist. I think. In the 10 years since I gave it all up to run away to sea, though, I've gone from being a long-haired environmentalist who occasionally fished for work, to where I am today; Guns, God and Big Oil... pretty much the antithesis of the people I'm going to be surrounded by. Should be interesting.


Anonymous said...

i'd like to hear more about this conference. email can work.

Halley said...

Wait, so are you going to play the good cop or the bad cop?

My one (broad) request: behave yourself.

Paul, Dammit! said...

Will- can do, if we ever finish clearing our decks after the latest snow squalls (BTB, drop by any time this next week...)

Halley, let's not forget who was on the team that coached YOU... and you turned out allright, si?

Halley said...

Because of, or in spite of? ;)