Saving Face

Saving face is my topic for tonight.  Saving face is what causes people to ramble anxiously when they don’t really know what they are talking about.  Saving face is what causes suicides in Japan, and honour killings in India, Pakistan and the Middle East.  Saving face is also heavily involved in blame culture.

 

Note that all of these consequences of saving face are negative.  There is nothing good about the idea of saving face. Fuck your stupid face.

 

Having spent a decade of formative years in high-pressure catering work, where there is no such thing as saving face, I can tell you how annoying it is to be around people seemingly obsessed with it.  It is very simple – you either get it right or you don’t, and unless you are one of those rare beasts like Boris,  who is not that interested in saving face, despite his career choices, you are more likely to stick with your bone-headed opinion forever like David Wolfe.

 

Saving face is time-wasting, a product of ego, vain and when you can see through it, extremely irritating.  There is absolutely no excuse for sticking with the same wrong opinion or dearly held belief just because people have been doing it for centuries before you, or because you are trapped in some stupid cultural norm of ‘doing what is expected of you.’  So what if you are a diet guru who digs fat chicks, or a male head of the household whose wife earns more than you do?  Really, so what?

 

The inability to think your way out of a state of requiring that you must save your tedious face is a sure sign of inane vanity.  It is not something I regard as forgiveable. To err is human, but the divine does not forgive you setting your wife on fire, hurling yourself out of a window or worrying about what your equally stupid neighbours or friends think.

 

One of the few things America has got right is discarding, to a certain extent, the idea of saving face.  The obsession with money has helped with this.  If you fail, you have no option, as a yank, but to move on and be successful at something else before your health insurance and ‘gasoline’ runs out.  They may be extremely dumb about other things, but acknowledging and moving on from failure is something they do reasonably well. Look at the example of Trump.  They see no reason at all for not voting for a man on trial in two states for fraud and rape in at least one other state! No question of his saving face then!

 

Ultimately in life, it is imperative to learn how to shrug and move on.  Sometimes mistakes cannot be cleared up immediately, and sometimes they are catastrophic, but you will find out fairly early in life, if you are any kind of person at all, that you are a lot more worthy of respect if you simply acknowledge your error rather than finding someone else to dump it on.

 

In recent years, it has become fashionable to try to spin your errors onto someone else.  This has been extremely bad for the economy and for talented individuals it is also extremely frustrating for learning.  If you are not allowed to point out and correct errors, nothing can change and little errors quickly turn into enormous disasters.  (The banking crisis being a case in point.)

 

So, whilst mistakes are inevitable, it is important for you as a well rounded individual to learn from them and take responsibility for them, at least in your own mind whilst you find some poor sap to take the blame so you can retain your promotion.  Remember that cheats get promoted, and the lower in the organisation you are, the more likely you are to be sinfully honest. (see the bagel experiment)

 

Try not to kill your wife and children, ruin anybody’s life or jump out of any windows.  It isn’t worth it.  Shit happens, and if you have even half a brain you will figure out a way of getting around it.

 

 

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