From: Michael Hirschmann (mti@mindspring.com)
Date: Fri Apr 30 1999 - 20:55:13 EEST

I'm a relatively new to the RP industry, and have much enjoyed this RP-ML as
a good source of knowledge and entertainment. This issue has helped on both
those counts, as I find it an interesting and productive discussion, and
also a bit confusing and perhaps amusing.

I retired from the energy business in Houston before my current involvement
with RP. I think it's safe to say that that business is a bastion of
conservatism, and some of the same issues were hot topics there as more
non-WASP males continued to integrate into the business. My first hand
experiences with this included things like hiring the first woman employee
for a plant maintainance crew at a plant in the back woods of Oklahoma.
What I learned from that is that it's hard to generalize. Some minority
individuals fit in well, and some didn't, and it was as much up to the
individuals as it is the group they were to fitting into (sounds a lot like
non-minorities). I'm not saying that minorities didn't face special
challenges, I'm saying some were more proficient at effectively meeting
these and other challenges (ie That first woman on the crew was also a
weight lifter (a detail that did catch my attention during the interview),
and seemed to quickly become one of the gang after arm wrestling a few of
the good ol boys. I believe she also kicked the $#*+ out of one of the more
obnoxious @$$%0!+$ on the crew, although I never heard about that, as that
would have required official action on my part).

I also contend that often times we find what we're looking for. I'm
guessing humans spend a good portion of their wake hours reaffirming their
beliefs by seeing into the world that which they already know. And then
occassionally, we get jolted by something that derails our repeating cycles
and we grow a little.

(The "IT'S UP TO YOU" t-shirts can be purchased for a nominal fee upon request)

Signed, Happy to be here Hirschmann

For more information about the rp-ml, see http://ltk.hut.fi/rp-ml/

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