Call Center Purgatory <$BlogRSDURL$>
Call Center Purgatory
Thursday, December 22, 2005
  "Interfering For Good"

As some of you may or may not know, I re-read "A Christmas Carol" by Charles Dickens every year. It is an amazing little book with many things to say. Here's some quotes that caught my eyes this year. Let's compare several passages to see how Dickens moves the conversation about the poor through the entire book. This passage is where Scrooge is approached by some people endeavoring to raise money for the poor. Just before this quote Scrooge asks the famous question,"Are there no Prisons? Are there no workhouses?". The brave souls finally ask Scrooge how much he will give and he replies,

"I wish to be left alone," said Scrooge. "Since you
ask me what I wish, gentlemen, that is my answer.
I don't make merry myself at Christmas and I can't
afford to make idle people merry. I help to support
the establishments I have mentioned--they cost
enough; and those who are badly off must go there."

"Many can't go there; and many would rather die."

"If they would rather die," said Scrooge, "they had
better do it, and decrease the surplus population.
Besides--excuse me--I don't know that."

"But you might know it," observed the gentleman.

"It's not my business," Scrooge returned. "It's
enough for a man to understand his own business, and
not to interfere with other people's. Mine occupies
me constantly. Good afternoon, gentlemen!"
The part at the end caught my eye. "It's enough for a man to understand his own business and not to interfere with other people's. Mine occupies me constantly."

Mind your own business, and don't interfere with other people's lives. That's a very Western idea, I would venture to say a very bedrock of some parts of American culture. But like any philosophy it can't be the only idea that guides you. Later on in the book, after Marley's excellent speech where he says "Mankind was my business!", we see into the spiritual world that has been around Scrooge all this time, but never seen or heard by those living:
The air was filled with phantoms, wandering hither
and thither in restless haste, and moaning as they
went. Every one of them wore chains like Marley's
Ghost; some few (they might be guilty governments)
were linked together; none were free. Many had
been personally known to Scrooge in their lives. He
had been quite familiar with one old ghost, in a white
waistcoat, with a monstrous iron safe attached to
its ankle, who cried piteously at being unable to assist
a wretched woman with an infant, whom it saw below,
upon a door-step. The misery with them all was,
clearly, that they sought to interfere, for good, in
human matters, and had lost the power for ever.

In this part, we see Dicken's answer to Scrooge's philosophy of not interfering in other people's business. We see that humanity was meant to interfere in the lives of others, not to only concern themselves with their own welfare above others. When its too late, the ghosts realize that all their toil in the world caused no positive changes to what was really important, that is, mankind. We all must see our business as being actively involved in changing the lives of our fellow travelers through life. God interfered in the lives of mankind by giving his only son as a gift that others may live. Christmas, on some level, is about interfering in people's lives for good.

Maybe I'll write some more about this on Christmas Eve...

Thanks for reading,

Anonymous Cog

Comments: Post a Comment

Exploring the mind numbing insanity and childish corporate culture of an unknown call center employee.

Purgatory: A place of suffering and torment with an unknown duration. In Roman Catholic Theology-the place where the dead are purified from their sins.

Email:anonymous.cog at

"One must know oneself, if this does not serve to discover truth, it at least serves as a rule of life, and there is nothing better." -Blaise Pascal

The Cog is listening to:
"Wake Up"
By Rage Against The Machine

Search this site powered by FreeFind

Here's my RSS(XML Atom) feed

Visit Anonymous Cog's other site: Poverty,Politics,and Faith

Call Centre


"To see what is in front of one's nose needs a constant struggle." -George Orwell


February 2004 / March 2004 / April 2004 / May 2004 / June 2004 / July 2004 / August 2004 / September 2004 / October 2004 / November 2004 / December 2004 / January 2005 / February 2005 / March 2005 / April 2005 / May 2005 / June 2005 / July 2005 / August 2005 / September 2005 / October 2005 / November 2005 / December 2005 / January 2006 / February 2006 / March 2006 / April 2006 / May 2006 / June 2006 / July 2006 / August 2006 / September 2006 / December 2006 / August 2007 / September 2007 / September 2011 /

Powered by Blogger