Friday, September 13, 2013

knowing the story is the key


i read in the atlantic that storytelling may be the key to our evolution. whether that's true (or provable) or not, i know that it's the key to my ability to negotiate my way through the world. from the stories i tell myself in my head about various situations to the ones i relate out loud to generate a laugh to the ones i write for my clients, stories are pretty much the central feature of my existence.

this week, a very interesting story has unfolded that has made me so much more able to handle the situation with my nemesis the troglodyte. probably the biggest problem i've had with him has been that i could find no logic in his behavior or even for his involvement in the group, let alone his desire to so firmly grip the reins of control that everyone else's thoughts and contributions are obliterated. but thanks to a story, that all makes so much more sense. because it can all be explained by plain old boring selfish economic interest. it turns out that the troglodyte owns several properties which are adjacent to one of the potential locations for our project. his desire to place a new building on a square near his properties and his stubborn and oftentimes nasty refusal to consider the possibility of remodeling the existing building that's being used a "culture house" today make so much sense in light of his selfish interest in his own bottom line. i also learned that he's in the process of trying to sell the properties to a developer, one to whom he has undoubtedly promised that the new culture house will be built nearby and bring traffic to a new square right in front of the properties. hmm, i wonder if such petty little town kings (which are surely not rare) reflect in those world corruption list standings?

funnily enough, as the various options progress with our architect, it turns out that reusing just part of the old building will result in 1500 square meters of usable space for the money that's been budgeted, whereas a new building on the tiny lot on the square will result in 410 square meters of usable space. it seems there isn't much choice there. and it will be very interesting on monday evening to see what story he tells to he continue to justify his desire for the project on the square, adjacent to his own properties.

i have the most evil delicious sense of delight in the fact that he doesn't know that anyone knows that he's the owner. he doesn't realize how easy it is to google your way to answers. he's also been very dismissive of our group's online presence and the internet in general. it seems that one doesn't do well to underestimate the power of a girl and her computer. i can't wait for this story to unfold.

6 comments:

c is for cape town said...

I can't wait either! Looking fwd to the next installment ...

Elizabeth said...

Me neither!

Enjoy your preparations for the next meeting.

Bill Stankus said...

but it usually doesn't stop with the identifiable property/landowner. There are are always fat cats who remain hidden in the deals. Silent power and silent money ... that's what drives most projects. Finding out who these guys are is often impossible ... they can be local of from half way round the world... but I bet they there.

Spilling Ink said...

I feel so proud of you right now :)

(The troglodyte's been bothering me to, you know, through your stories.)

julochka said...

ill be sure to keep you all posted. next meeting is Monday evening, so it should be interesting!

@Bill, it's funny younsaynthat, because I found out that the developer he's trying to sell to is from out of town. and one of the owners of one of the other buildings that's in play is also living abroad, so you're spot on there!

Michelle said...

hmm... does this story remind me of The Casual Vacancy - JK Rowling's weird novel???