Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Me? Serious?

Sometimes I amaze myself. I like to think of myself as a fairly easy going non-serious kind of fellow. When I write my blog I am usually trying to figure out ways to make people laugh or keep it light. I have developed this desire to blog and yet when I sit down to do it I don't always come up with something witty and then abandon the process hoping that perhaps something will happen during the day to inspire me to write. Invariably I just get bogged down in my day to day grind at work and yet another day passes without a column.
Today however the grind has produced a more serious, contemplative mood in me and I have decided to explore this for a change. The last couple of days at work have been quite stressful. I won't elaborate on the fine details, but suffice it to say that the work load for the people I supervise is sharply increasing as is my frustration with "administrative protocol".
Working for a government agency has it's benefits to be sure, but more often than not it comes with a myriad of headaches that people in the general public refer to as "red tape".
Now as I previously stated, I am not by any means a serious individual and I would hardly describe myself as passionate on any given day. However today is one of those days that I have discovered something in myself that has probably always been there, but my self inventory has revealed what I would label as passion.
It comes on the heels of yet another conflict with a "higher power", the court system. I have kind of always viewed my job as just that, a job. I don't know that I became a social worker because of some idealistic principles to which I adhere or that these were ingrained in me by my parents. The job just kind of fell into my lap.
I think perhaps I have embraced these idealistic principles by virtue of doing the job, and this is who I have become. You see today I found myself arguing with not only the judge in this case, but my own legal counsel. I felt a driving need to get this attorney to represent to the court what I feel is in the best interest of some children that have been removed from their parents home and custody. I felt like I had "passion" for not only this situation but the aforementioned struggle to get through the red tape that I actually represent through my job. As I look at the definition of passion in the dictionary I am not certain that it completely fits what I have experienced lately. It describes either "boundless enthusiasm" or an "abandoned display of emotion". Regardless, I felt something, call it what you will. I enjoy fighting the good fight. I feel like I have purpose in my direction.
On the other end of the scale I have a lot of apathy about a great many things. I don't see myself taking up any big political causes. I care about the environment as long as it is convenient for me. I still resent that the city I live in has forced me to recycle AND they are charging me to do it, I mean what is that all about? I enjoy driving my big SUV. I don't like paying for it, but I enjoy it none the less. I think there are a lot of atrocities in the world that get my attention, however I am content to let other people worry about those things. Is that so wrong? Am I a horrible person because I have become a bit myopic in my crusade?
After all I think I am doing my part. I am helping the little guy in my own way. I am fighting for things that others may not recognize as important. But by gum I am going to keep doing those things and whether or not it makes a big difference in the world remains to be seen. Maybe I am passionate. Maybe, just maybe I am more than what I traditionally believe about myself.

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