Monday to Wednesday, I was in Manchester, on a course that I enjoyed thoroughly - fellow participants exceeding my expectations around humour, deep thinking, and scope for creating intrigue.
Monday morning, during a break, I am walking down a wide looping staircase with a fellow participant, The Dane. She is 30ish, she is tidily casual, and we've already spoken of various cultural interests.
The Dane has mentioned that she 'manages a small design team'. With this, I hear urban. I hear urbane. I hear cutting edge. I hear technology. I hear city centre. I hear cosmpolitan. I hear Frappuccino. Descending the stairs, The Swede makes a remark about being very hard-pressed, financially.
Shane: What did you say you did?
Dane: I manage a small design team.
Shane: But, minimum wage?
Dane: Well, less than, actually.
Dane: Well, the thing is, we're trying to run it in an ethical manner.
Shane: (Here, there is much to unpack - much that we don't have time to unpack. I sense that The Dane knows that whatever is being referred to as 'ethical manner' is unsustainable.) Mm.
Dane: (sighs) Mm.
Shane: Y' know, maybe what you need to do, is abandon the whole ethical approach - unethical is the new ethical, kind of thing. Then you'll be fine!
Dane: (frowns, looks me over - a bit puzzled)
Shane: Ah! Don't worry. Free consultation. I'm just here to help.
Swede: (briefly puzzles) (smiles)
I move on, confident that I have much to contribute over the next few days.