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The Old Sill Share This on LinkedIn   Share This on Google   Tweet This   Forward This

16 March 2017

Character. We were using the word the other day in reference to our kitchen window sill. Three layers of paint, dings and chips, caulk curled from the afternoon sun. A mess.

The Old Sill. After new paint, back in service.

Well, not a mess, character. Evidence of what it has taken to stay on the job since 1948 just above the sink, the sun beating through the window, storms raging against the thin glass.

We recaulked it and gave it fresh coat of paint this week. It was back in service last night. And this morning it looked fresh as a daisy. So we took a photo.

Earlier this morning, running through our open tabs in Safari looking for interesting items for the Horn, we ran across a panel discussion at SXSW titled Psychopaths in Silicon Valley: A Guide. Characters without character.

The Guardian covered the panel discussion in Crazy at the Wheel: Psychopathic CEOs Are Rife in Silicon Valley, Experts Say. Olivia Solon, who wrote the story, quoted forensic and clinical psychologist Michael Woodworth:

A true psychopath is someone that has a blend of emotional, interpersonal, lifestyle and behavioral deficits but an uncanny ability to mask them. They come across as very charming, very gregarious. But underneath there's a profound lack of remorse, callousness and a lack of empathy.

Solon also quoted Jeff Hancock, a Stanford social scientist who studies psychopathy, about the trouble with psychopaths:

One of the main things that makes them extremely difficult to organizations is their willingness to manipulate through deception.

And Silicon Valley venture capitalist Bryan Stolle described what happens when things don't go their way:

When things aren't happening the way they thought they were going to happen, they tend to completely flip and resort to bullying.

We suspect you don't need us to come up with of a few recent real world examples illustrating those traits. Psychopathy seems to be all the rage these days.

But imagine going through life without having as much character as an old kitchen window sill.

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