Photos and Words of Patrick Calder

I live in Washington, DC with 1 cat named Pixel, 6 cameras, 3 computers, 158 movies, 286 books, and 1 bowling pin. I own the Design Foundry and pretend to be a graphic designer by day.

Please keep in mind that this post is more than 3 years old. Opinions change. Tastes change. Everything changes. I may still agree with or like this, or I may not. But everything is kept up here for archival purposes.

Shut Up / October 29, 2007

Most of the trouble I cause in my world comes from an inability to stop myself from talking. At least 95% of those instances revolve around me being agitated to one extreme or another about something. And while I well know I should keep my mouth shut when I’m worked-up, I’m not always successful. I could argue that most of the agitation is caused by someone else making inappropriate comments in a similarly excited state. But being occasionally unable to ignore such provocations–as you would expect from any rational person–isn’t something to be proud of.

I seem to be able to better handle it in business than my personal life. But then you won’t survive long in business if you take it personally, for various reasons, (mental health, upset clients, lack of objectivity, blah blah blah). And I’ve found that even when a client does go off the deep and attempt to take me with them, if I just keep quiet and wait a day or two, cooler thoughts will prevail without any intervention from me.

But friends and family have signed some waiver. They’ve probably seen me behaving like a jackass at some point, and still decided to continue talking to me. So my guard is down, my filters are off. While there’s still plenty of things I shouldn’t say, I usually don’t see them coming until they’re on the way out of my mouth. In extreme cases I’ve cut off any meaningful conversations with certain people, in order to avoid conflict. But I don’t like that, and it’s not friendship, to me.

I don’t have an acceptable excuse. I don’t have a solution. I’m still working on it.

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One thought on “Shut Up

  1. Oh boy Patrick! Is that a family trait?? I have the same issue and so does my sister Nancy. We’ve had so many conversations about it and what to do to stop it. I’d include my brother Frank because he has the problem, but he doesn’t care what he says and considers it a good thing.
    Personally, I decided I have no brakes between my brain and my tongue. They just aren’t there! Either I was born without them or they wore out in my youth.
    Ed is the best about helping me with it. He calls me out everytime I do it…”That was a bit harsh Margie” “Did you really just say that to me?” “Did you know that was out loud?!” I’ve learned to be a bit more careful about it with him and it’s translating to everything else … EXCEPT work.
    At work I’m the office manager and my boss hates confrontation. Soooo, he complains to me -> I confront the agents…good cop, bad cop scenario I guess. He’s enabling my behavior!!

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