Friday, January 06, 2006

You Don't Know What You've Got Until Its Gone......

I had an interesting experience yesterday in which Idris, due to a programming error, removed me from Ultimatetalk for several hours. This post is about my reaction to that experience, so if you can't bear to read about me sucking up to Idris and bowing to the Temple Ultimatetalk, please move on...........

After I got my daughter off to school, I made my way upstairs with my coffee to do my normal routine of checking my e-mail and seeing what is up on Ultimatetalk. Just a normal morning during this slow period in my work. Nothing going on with e-mail, so I cranked up Ultimatetalk. No new action, but then I noticed that "Holy Shit! I have been downgraded from a "contributor" to "other sites". Those who know me well know that I am extremely sensitive to caffeine, so things started to happen quickly. First, I sent an e-mail to Idris titled "Downgraded?", and the text was "What's Up?". Simple. Maybe even a bit coy with very little entitlement. This being 9am EST, I knew that I was going to have to wait awhile until the other coast got up and checked out the internet.

The next hour was pretty much insufferable. First, there was concern and anxiety. Why had I been removed from Ultimatetalk? Were my posts really that bad? Why didn't anyone just drop me a line to say that I am boorish? Maybe it was that I have been posting too much lately. Or posting too much inane drivel. My thoughts were racing at top caffeine speed. Jim had casually asked me at a party the other day how I had got onto Ultimatetalk. Paranoia set in. I was on his list, right? Maybe this was Al and Jim's doing.......

Anxiety turns inevitably to anger. Ok, what is it now, Ultimatetalk for Elite Open White Males? FUCK Idris and those other elite bastards. I will form my own Ultimatetalk. For the common player. Kenny just shows up and takes my spot, WHAT THE FUCK!!?

Anger takes so much energy, though, and I lost focus. This turned into resignation. Well, being an "other site" is not that bad. I check The Pups, Marshall, and Gwen every day, right? The pups might even have the best discussions going. Maybe I should just stop blogging.

Then I get an e-mail.

It is from THE BIG I.

I open it.

He says "Whoops, sorry, mate......programming error on my part". BOOM! Everything is right with the world again!

Now comes the sucking up part. Losing something you value reminds you that it is precious. I thank Idris for creating Ultimatetalk, and I hope I able to do my bit in some small additive way with humility and perspective.

Finally, the experience made me realize that, despite my anti-hierarchy leanings, I view being a "contributor" as more significant than being an "other site". I apologize for such arrogance (probably the least attractive of human traits). This violates not only my desire to not buy into hierarchies based on subjective criteria, but also shows a disappointing lack of the aforementioned humility. My only out is that I can claim, as I said earlier, to actively read the "other sites" almost daily, and I am grateful for their thoughtful and interesting posts. Gwen's site is great in its focus on women's Ultimate, the Pups have great topics, Marshall has not been posting much recently, but he is always insightful, and hh, well, it is always a great adventure. I think including these sites on Utimatetalk enhances the site greatly.

Thanks for your indulgence.

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