In Which I am Disappointed Anew

As soon as I heard today’s goal, I knew it was unreachable. BY 5PM Wyson wanted us to get out:

32 DVDs

200 HDs

Now for some perspective: all summer we have gotten out 40 DVDs. I forget exactly what Wyson told me we were averaging as far as HDs per day, but it was a low number. Double digits, but below a hundred.

He basically thought it was possible to double all this IN TIME TO GO TO THE POOL.

It’s one thing to have that be the day’s goal, that’s fine. And maybe the reward is….well, not there or just delayed. Fine. But to have a goal that we can not reach in time to take advantage of the offered reward? I feel like that is even more discouraging than not having a goal in the first place. To keep promising students a reward and then offer these ridiculously high goals… well, I was listening in on Wyson’s conversation with Joana, and I’m not the only one who feels this way. Actually, maybe the rest of the students haven’t quite worked it out in their heads. Some of them actually thought that goal was reachable. But they’re not the ones paying attention to the facts. The numbers. They’re not the ones looking at and weighing what is and is not reasonable.

Of course, I would expect the LEADERS to be doing this sort of thing, but that’s another rant.

No, this post is not going to be a rant about the leadership. That was last post’s topic. Today I am going to be a little more positive. I had a headache today from the heat, and I hadn’t really gotten enough water. Well, that was the official reason. It wasn’t really a lie, but I just told Wyson that so he wouldn’t know that the REAL reason I sat in the van for a bit was because I couldn’t stop crying and I felt I needed to recoup.

And I listened in on the calls, because, I mean, he’s got it on speakerphone, how can I avoid it? I heard Joana and Wyson talk about alternative options for swimming. Which made me esteem them more highly.  I THOUGHT I even heard Joana say something about goals being more manageable, but she didn’t phrase it exactly like that, and I probably just misheard her. Her car actually met their quota. She said that the students were getting discouraged because they wanted their reward, screw the rest of us. I actually wouldn’t mind that if it hadn’t been stated up front that this is a GROUP goal, and that this averaged out to x amount of dvds/HDs per van, not that it was every van for itself.

Yesterday I was mad, but not because our van reached the goal and no one else did. Not because I thought we should have our reward and screw the rest of them. I was mad because…well, that’s last post’s topic. We’re moving on now.

Joana sounded like she was overwhelmed a bit by student complaints. I don’t blame Jo for feeling that way, but neither do I blame the students.

And we’re getting to why I managed to make it through the day without screaming at Wyson. (That was MY personal goal, anyway. He actually said I could hop in the van before because I had a headache and I didn’t because I was afraid I’d just scream at him.) I was talking with Wyson, and I realized why he sets these unreachable goals. At first I thought it was because he is out of his tiny little mind, but as we talked, he told me that when HE was a student, 200 HDs was the average. That in spirit week when he was a student (if someone wants to know what spirit week is I’ll tell them, but for the sake of time I’m going to pass the explanation right now) 75 books was the goal and they would hit it by 5. The last week of canvassing, they would hit 100 books by 5.

So, Wyson does not suffer from some form of mental illness. Wyson suffers from Old Man Syndrome. I’m sure you know the type, the person who says, “in my day, we walked to school 5 miles both ways uphill in both directions through 8 feet of snow every morning, what do you mean you want me to drive you the 2 miles to school just because it’s -20 degrees farenheit and there’s a cold weather advisory on tv? Get your coat on and WALK.”

Or, if that doesn’t hit home for you, the parent who says, “when I was a kid, I WORKED my way through school, you don’t need government aid, you just need to work.” Nevermind the fact that things are different now. That you can no longer be considered an independent adult until you’re 23, regardless of how long you’ve been living on your own, regardless of how much your parents don’t support you. Because of that, you have to put parents’ information, and some parents are too rich for aid, but too poor to actually afford it. See, in their day, the government wasn’t that horrible. Old Man Syndrome consists of, “I was able to do this, so you should be too.”

This is Wyson’s 7th summer canvassing. So I don’t exactly know how long it took him to get so out of touch. He argued that God is still the same God. Well, yes, but you also have to remember that God will not force himself on anybody. If we don’t get a certain amount of books out, I don’t think it’s because God was not with us or not powerful. I think, rather, it is because Satan has power too, and people have a choice: they can choose to be under God’s power, or Satan’s. Some people choose not to be under God’s, and there’s nothing we can do. God will not force people.

I don’t know exactly what’s going on. Maybe it’s the territory that is different. I mean, this is the first time we’ve been in Troy for a good 5 years or so, therefore we don’t really know the average for the area.

I managed to civilly talk to Wyson about it. Not about OMS, but I asked if the goals could be made more reasonable in order to actually partake of the promised reward. I mean, 200 HDS as a day’s goal? Sure. Just don’t promise us something we can’t have if we don’t get that out by the time the pool closes, because then, by my (and possibly others’) definition, we’ve already failed.

Marenda is actually under the impression that the leaders are not cruel enough to NOT take us to the pool this week. She said that maybe, if we reached our goal every day but couldn’t go to the pool, we could have Thursday off to go to the pool.

I am under no such delusions, but it doesn’t matter.

We did not reach either goal today. At all. And this is with Wyson taking us to the gas station after we left the field. They actually made us leave because, well, duh, who wants solicitors in their place of business after dark? I forget the exact numbers. I know we got close, but jeez.

Tomorrow, I should jsut close my ears to wahtever the goal is and count it as a regular day. But I tried that today and it didn’t really work, just made things more discouraging.

Something smells good. Makes me realize I’m hungry. But then I’d have to be around people… and some of the people from Joana’s car are actually angry because we didn’t reach our goal, because, you know, we were slacking because we didn’t get enough stuff out. Yesterday, I was not angry at the other teams. Disappointed? Yes. Wondered why they weren’t doing well? Yes. Frustrated? Yes. But not at them. Not one single bit of my frustration or anger was directed at them.

I guess high schoolers (some of them, anyway) don’t always understand these things.

Help Me


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