|NASA launching "Messenger"|
Spacecraft to Mercury
For me it is What They Said Monday. I get to write about something ‘they’ say. I have yet to identify who the ‘they’ are but someday the Illuminati, the Free Masons, Knights Templar and all other secret societies will send messengers to reveal to me exactly who this mysterious ‘they’ are.
For now, on the note of messengers, I have a few words. They say “Don’t shoot the messenger.” According to Wikipedia, the first person to use this term was Shakespeare in Henry IV, part 2. Whatever. I don’t buy that for a minute. I am sure the phrase was used before that and probably by a messenger.
I did find it funny when some character on some television show I can’t remember the name of said, “I’m all for shooting the messenger. You know why? It sends a message.”
I have a feeling that is exactly what happened to messengers in the good old days. They were killed or tortured because they were usually from an enemy camp. Why? Well, obviously, to send a message to those who sent the messenger. It would have been I imagine an effective warning.
A great example of what happens to messengers can be seen in the movie 300 when King Leonidas tells the Persian messenger exactly what he thinks of the message. It is in this scene he says the famous words, “This is Sparta!” Granted this is a fictional movie but it’s still a great scene.
The thing about this little bit is not about how messengers should be treated. The point is to warn people not to act as messenger for any reason. If someone volunteers you to act as their messenger, it says a great deal about you.
The person may say they chose you because you are competent, well liked or friends with the person to whom the message needs to be given. They might feed you that line of crap about how you are so diplomatic or nice or well spoken. They always offer some reason why they can’t send the message themselves. If they are truly skilled at manipulation, they will make you feel good about being the messenger.
Don’t buy into this. When you are the messenger, it means the following:
- You are not the most important person in the relationship/partnership/business/social group/etc. Usually the person sending the message is the most important person.
- You have no leverage. If you had any sort of leverage or way to argue why you should not be the messenger, then you wouldn’t be the messenger. Another way of looking at this is that you are dependent in some way on the person sending the message. They are either employing you, you need their friendship, you need their love, you need their approval, you need their money, you need their contacts or you need to be liked and feel needed.
- You are being used
- You are in danger. Most likely, unless you are delivering a message to a drug dealer, terrorist organization or any type of seedy underworld/back alley/ black market business – then you are not in physical danger. I take that back, you may be in danger of getting smacked or punched by some overly emotional recipient. You are in danger of damaging relationships, losing the respect of others, finding out more than you ever wanted to know, inadvertently becoming involved in some plot against someone or something and in general of being seen as having sided with the enemy. There might also be some who might question the existence of your spine.
- On the rare occasion, you may be asked to be the messenger out of convenience but don't let that stop you from considering the above items.
Let me just say this: Don’t be a messenger. It is perfectly acceptable on the other hand to send messages or be the recipient of messages. Just try not to be the middle guy, the go between, the schmuck.
This is my heartfelt message to all of you readers on this auspicious Monday. I have to post it here because frankly I don’t use messengers. They require too much coaxing, too much mental effort on my part to make it sound like I’m not just using them. And besides, if someone did mangle the messenger I would feel bad. Briefly.