Numbers are cold, sans personality and ruthlessly clear. They are essential for business. Then there is statistics, the trophy wife of numbers. Any information, no matter how subjective or multi-faceted, can be crammed into a neat-looking chart. It is convenient, looks intelligent and is accurate; well almost…more or less.
A graph of punch-in times would resemble the infamous bell curve. The crest of the bell off course would coincide with the last safe time to punch in. Leading up to the crest are the boring people who wake up needlessly early. They actually know what the milk man and newspaper guy look like! They probably have the same breakfast everyday and have a fixed shirt for every day of the week. At the crest are people who are not sure about who they are. They are trying to comply but are held by the frayed ends of sanity. They still try to enjoy evenings and weekends. But exhausting realisation will dawn on them soon.
Then there are slaves on the far side of the hill, the junkies; the perpetual late comers. These are toy-gun slinging self-proclaimed cowboys-in-formals. They slip in the occasional sneaker with a formal trouser to convince themselves freedom exists somewhere on the horizon.
You would think it would be fun to see a below-the-crest guy lose it or an after-the-crest guy finally quit and go sky-diving. But nothing changes. From the way you brush your teeth to the route you take to work, not much changes. It can be plotted very neatly against other relative constants like salary and job satisfaction. You know you are different, you want to be different. Yet, there you are on the graph, neatly categorized like rats in a lab or bacteria on a Petri plate.
If you believe you have a distinctive personality, you should have become an artiste (whatever that means). Uniformity and conformity saves money and makes money. You can see it every day from mass produced tea to one-size-fits-all campaign T-shirts.
If that ain’t purgative enough for you, maybe a dot in your name on a cold graph will be.
P.S.: Thanks to Mr. Dubey with whom I have lived the curve for the concept of this post.