Dragged myself to a vitally important workshop on the appraisal system the teaching profession will be rated under from 2005. As useful as the information was to us, there was no way they could have made it interesting. It's just that kind of a subject. So it's more than "these are the hoops, jump through them," it now adds on a component of "we know how well you've been jumping through them because we observe you jumping in this particular manner."
In a way, I suppose it's good to have a systematic means of setting specific standards for employees to live up to or aspire towards, but it also means that the things we do as a necessary part of our jobs, things that we don't give a second thought about because of how common sense they are, now become obligatory and no longer fun. When we do something right, we want to forget we did it right then the next time we have to do it again, it feels fresh. When we do something wrong, we want to forget because it would probably have been an unpleasant experience.
You might say these memories are important to keep otherwise we won't learn from our experiences, but I say let our subconscious minds do the learning while our conscious minds focus on the practical, daily, mundane stuff of getting through the day. That's putting the right parts of our minds to work on the right jobs. Instead, what we have here is a system that records and monitors every individual at ever single little turn so that whatever you do good or not-so-good, you have to take the time to consciously remember every single little detail about it so it can go in your report for the year.
The tedium of do-record-do-record-ad infinitum sort of makes you not want to do anything any more so you can avoid recording it just to break out of the cycle. (To those of you embroiled in PW, I assure you, I know your pain). Then again, I seem to be recording everything in my blog and it doesn't seem to be so much of a bother. Hmm... I guess the audience and the motivation for writing and reading these records have something to do with it. I blog in the hope of being entertaining (er.. you are being entertained, I hope) and perhaps of being understood. The appraisal is a record to show that I know how to do my job at the level of expectation placed on me by dint of my official capacity as an employee of my employer, and to show I am doing my job better than the next poor schmuck who is destined for a 'D' or 'E' grade. Better him than me. See why it's so painful?
Whatever. I'll continue to do my job as far as I'm able and not worry too much about it because I know the veritas of this situation: Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose. Tell me if I'm not right.
Watched Shrek 2. Funny, irreverent, lots of fun! Worth watching once. And don't leave the cinema until Donkey's problem is resolved.