A Good Listener
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“The word listen contains the same letters as the word silent.”

– Alfred Brendel, Austrian pianist, poet and author.


“I explained this to you already,” she said. “Weren’t you listening?”

Years ago, I started a new job, and the manager was not the best trainer. She had little patience with the new staff. I remember her showing me something once then asking, “Go it?” When I asked for clarity, I got the above response. I was listening but wasn’t being heard.

Part of the job involved operating one of the early electronic cash registers, and I couldn’t for the life of me get the device to cooperate. Usually, I would ask for help from the other cashiers, who would grudgingly cancel my transaction and re-ente...

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