Tuesday, May 09, 2017


I warn in advance that this blog isn't going to mean much to anybody except myself, but it's therapeutic to get the following off my chest....

By chance, "You've got mail" was shown once again on the television of Saturday; I came home from walking the dog in the late afternoon and found my wife watching it. There's a scene early on, after Meg Ryan meets Tom Hanks at a party and discovers who he is, when Hanks writes the following: Wouldn't it be wonderful if I could pass all my zingers to you and then I would never behave badly and you could behave badly all the time and we'd both be happy? On the other hand, I must warn you that when you finally have the pleasure of saying the thing you mean to say at the moment you mean to say it, remorse inevitably follows.

I haven't had the dubious pleasure of saying the thing you mean to say at the moment you mean to say it, but I did write an email to a fellow worker this morning saying that I am not prepared to compromise my principles by omitting data from a report. I also wrote that I was saddened by the amount of energy that this worker has spent trying to persuade me, and that this energy would have been put to better use in correcting the data which she doesn't want displayed.

Don't people understand that a principle of reviewing data is that everything has to be shown, warts and all? For the minute one sweeps bad data under the carpet, one loses the ability to see that something is wrong and then that something will never be corrected.

What's sad about this entire episode is that I feel terrible inside. And that's ironic: I feel bad because I did the moral thing and stood by my principles. I don't feel remorse at having written what I wrote, but I feel very uncomfortable and not sure that I can continue working with such people.

My manager (who is the CFO) supports me, but she's not the one who is fighting the battles in the trenches. I shouldn't have to fight at all.

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