Monday, January 28, 2008

'Pusillanimous nancy-boy'

Mark Steyn's next book title? "Pusillanimous Nancy-Boy" ... or, perhaps, "Obfuscatory Suffix":
Diana West thinks that my column on excessive deference to Islam reveals me as a pusillanimous nancy-boy because right at the end I use the word "Islamist". She thinks "Islamism" is a linguistic dodge that attempts to draw a false distinction between Islam in general and a, er, few bad apples.
(Via Memeorandum.) Steyn a "nancy-boy"? Tell it to the Canadians!

BTW, it's good to see Diana West blogging.

The reason I resigned from my job in August -- storming out the door in a fury -- was because the multitudinous obligations of my job prevented me from writing up the hourlong interview I did with Miss West when her book, "Death of the Grown-Up," was published last year.

I had allowed myself to become overscheduled, and my job at that point consisted of four different jobs, with three different bosses. As a result, there wasn't enough time to do the job I actually wanted to do, namely writing -- and I hadn't had a real vacation in years.

The fault was entirely my own. This is a point -- personal responsibility for one's own career failures -- that I've tried to get across to some of the young people I've mentored. If you ever find yourself in a job situation that's making you miserable (if not, indeed, driving you to an early grave), you have no one to blame but yourself.

There are other people who are happy and successful in their jobs. If you are an unhappy failure -- and that's how I felt on that August afternoon -- whose fault is that?

After I quit in August, my bosses talked me out of an immediate resignation and rearranged my duties. Then I got a deal to go to Sudan and work on a book project. Pretty cool. So now I'm going out the door with a smile on my face.

This happy ending never would have happened, however, except that I was willing to admit my own responsibility for my own failures.

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