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Pearls before Breakfast – If it is moving, will you stop?

If there is something that you should read today that is totally unconnected to the reason why your search query string in Google/Yahoo/MSN brought you to this site or this blog happens to be in your reading routine or for some other reasons, it is this article from the Washington Post – Pearls before Breakfast.

It was 7:51 a.m. on Friday, January 12, the middle of the morning rush hour. In the next 43 minutes, as the violinist performed six classical pieces, 1,097 people passed by. Almost all of them were on the way to work, which meant, for almost all of them, a government job. L’Enfant Plaza is at the nucleus of federal Washington, and these were mostly mid-level bureaucrats with those indeterminate, oddly fungible titles: policy analyst, project manager, budget officer, specialist, facilitator, consultant.
Each passerby had a quick choice to make, one familiar to commuters in any urban area where the occasional street performer is part of the cityscape: Do you stop and listen? Do you hurry past with a blend of guilt and irritation, aware of your cupidity but annoyed by the unbidden demand on your time and your wallet? Do you throw in a buck, just to be polite? Does your decision change if he’s really bad? What if he’s really good? Do you have time for beauty? Shouldn’t you? What’s the moral mathematics of the moment?

I’m not so crass as to think that this is a telling story on the state of the culture today (It may very well be) but what is it about the business of living that one bypasses that which is truly moving in life? A culture that is deaf to truth and beauty in one aspect will find that it is deaf to truth and beauty manifest in other aspects of life as well.
But would I have stopped? Now, that is the question of the moment?

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About me

I am Chris Jacob Abraham and I live, work and blog from Newburgh, New York. I work for IBM as a Senior consultant in the Fab PowerOps group that works around the issue of detailed Fab (semiconductor fab) level scheduling on a continual basis. My erstwhile company ILOG was recently acquired by IBM and I've joined the Industry Solutions Group there.

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