RE: Bombs in the Workplace

Subject: RE: Bombs in the Workplace
From: Emily Berk <emily -at- armadillosoft -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 09 Aug 2002 09:07:02 -0700

Thanks for posting this, Jane. It's a fascinating piece.

Please don't apologize for mentioning 9/11. I think one of our biggest problems is a refusal to think about what happened on that day and why and how it could have been prevented or at least mitigated.

I was also struck by the part about brains vs. brawn:

"... Sbaffoni has not exactly been ignored in media accounts of the rescue. His name appears over and over. But he's gotten nowhere near the attention the miners have attracted -- not to mention a Disney check -- and he was not mentioned at all by President Bush ...

Frankly, I'm not sure why Sbaffoni has been relatively slighted. Is it because his story would detract from that of the miners? Is it because we all prefer stories about teamwork -- the nine miners roping themselves together, passing the pen to write their farewell notes one by one -- to stories about a single individual, even when that individual is backed by a team? Maybe we just prefer blue-collar types to white-collar ones -- even though Sbaffoni is the son and grandson of coal miners himself.

My guess is that Sbaffoni is associated with science and, even more frighteningly, math. The miners, on the other hand, are associated with nothing that you and I cannot understand -- fear, grit and, of course, man against nature. They prayed to God while Sbaffoni (who may also have prayed) did something else: He calculated. ... "


"Jane Carnall" <jane -dot- carnall -at- digitalbridges -dot- com> wrote:
>... Richard Cohen's column in today's _Washington Post_ makes an interesting
>(paraphrased from the article): The Pennsylvania miners survived because
>they followed procedure in disaster ...

>Apologies for bringing up a tragic event, but I gathered that this was a
>problem at the WTC - at least in the south tower. The Port Authority
>appeared not to have a clear evacuation policy, and it was reported that
>many people were told to stay at their desks. (I have somewhere a forwarded
>e-mail from one of the survivors from the south tower - someone in her
>office reacted *instantly* the plane hit the north tower, and got everyone
>in that office to leave the building immediately. He had not seen what had
>happened, but had leapt to the conclusion that it must be have been a bomb -
>and thereby almost certainly saved their lives.)

>Jane Carnall
>Apologies for the long additional sig: it is added automatically and outwith
>my control. Home: hj -dot- carnall -at- virgin -dot- net

~ Emily Berk ~
~ On the web at *** Armadillo Associates, Inc. ~
~ Internet and non-internet application development, project ~
~ management, developer relations and extremely-technical technical ~
~ documentation that developers find useful. ~

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