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Friday, February 8, 2013

Here's a Good Quote to Ponder

"People say endlessly that one wants to be a heavy hitter because one wants prestige and perks but I disagree utterly with these vapid souls; it is about what one is happy doing."

Of course a little recognition and prestige is nice, but really it is very little or nothing during any particular day or month. The perks are mostly getting to do more of what you're already doing. You do research, and the reward is another research grant or just time off to do more of the same. But the work is there every day with its own rewards.


Vance Maverick said...

Hmm, at the risk of leaving too many comments on your blog: this seems like a false choice.

I know from my own work -- anonymous software development, all individuality tucked behind corporate brands -- that a big reason it's so satisfying is that it's an interaction with others. I value the teamwork, the mutual dependency with other engineers; and I value the service to customers, who never meet me, but whose needs I strive to meet.

In other words, for many of us, "prestige" is indistinguishable from being happy doing what we do. Likewise, profacero may not be looking for prizes or a table at Elaine's, but professoring doesn't mean much without meaning something to others first.

Anonymous said...

Ha, and it's my post, and it was in draft, and I cut that sentence to boil it down, but I stand by the sentence.

Of course it is a false choice. I could translate the sentence to: "Decent working conditions are NOT 'perks'!" or to any number of related permutations.

It is a sentence against the idea that doing more with less is noble, and so on.

Vance Maverick said...

That I can agree with. And no wonder I was confused: I followed the link, but couldn't find the context, so made up an interpretation on my own. On reading the miscellany there (no offense, I trust: it seems to have been intended miscellaneously): it's as if you need reassurance that research is communication too. You don't go to the archives, synthesize and compose, in order to put the results in a drawer....

Anonymous said...

It could be put that way in part, yes. The post is odd because it was a response to specific questions, that spoke to my Issue which is terror about extreme violence which my doing research did at one time provoke. My irrational feeling is that I will keep life and limb together if I am not seen in process and if it doesn't take time from other things. Coming up with offprints is fine, but one must not be seen to do the work. Oh: I just saw something -- one must not get deeply into it because it is *precisely* that which provokes violence and if I am really giving my text my full attention I will not be watching my back.