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Observations Reading Reflection

Recent Readings.

Things I have recently read (with commentary on only one piece):

The Stranger Beside Me

I have a longstanding interest in serial killers because I have no understanding why they murder people. My hope is that, upon finishing a book like this, I can make more sense out of something I just don’t get.

I didn’t realize that Ted Bundy had a history in Seattle. He was a work-study student at our local Crisis Clinic. He also worked with psychiatric patients in the clinic at Harborview Medical Center, the de facto county hospital. He murdered women in King County.

The author of The Stranger Beside Me had a friendship with Ted Bundy. She was writing the book as he was murdering women. While I did not gain a greater understanding why Ted Bundy killed people when I finished her book, I did appreciate her efforts in describing Ted Bundy as a person and her internal struggles as she wondered if her friend was the man responsible for many murders.

Solitude and Leadership

“What we have now are the greatest technocrats the world has ever seen, people who have been trained to be incredibly good at one specific thing, but who have no interest in anything beyond their area of exper­tise. What we don’t have are leaders.”

Rethinking Work

“But we care about more than money. We want work that is challenging and engaging, that enables us to exercise some discretion and control over what we do, and that provides us opportunities to learn and grow. We want to work with colleagues we respect and with supervisors who respect us. Most of all, we want work that is meaningful — that makes a difference to other people and thus ennobles us in at least some small way.”

Placebo Effects in Medicine

“Unfortunately, much of what is known about placebo effects has been discovered through laboratory experiments with healthy volunteers, employing deceptive techniques that are not directly pertinent to clinical practice. We need more research involving clinical interventions designed to elicit placebo effects in participants without deception and in a manner consistent with informed consent.”

Some Thoughts on the Real World by One Who Glimpsed It and Fled

“Creating a life that reflects your values and satisfies your soul is a rare achievement. In a culture that relentlessly promotes avarice and excess as the good life, a person happy doing his own work is usually considered an eccentric, if not a subversive.”