Emergency Magical Technician

Fun little article in the Health section of The Washington Post today. Some lawyer wrote a thing about how he became a part-time EMT in order to get that adrenaline rush that left his life once he left school and stopped competing in sports. That thrill-seeking addiction doesn’t surprise me — I know a few EMTs who do the exact same thing, who are possibly a little crazier seeing as they do it full-time.

But it gets better (or worse): he talks about how empowered/inspired he is by the fact that other people’s lives are in his hands. He really enjoys that other people depend upon him. Of course that’s better than people who are trying to kill or hurt other people (or those who just get off on seeing gory stuff), but he has a perverse emotional obsession with the issue. Not that it sounds that way to the Post or to this guy. Nah, they love that kind of plebian heroicism — self-important journalism that carries the same emotional weight as nationalistic or patriotic appeals.

A lot of people are like this guy, though, in that they really seem to enjoy having other people depend upon them. To me it seems to be a dumb macho thing — a vain indulgence, like flexing in the mirror. But so many people want that; so many people I know who are into fighting, medical care, relationships, education, therapy, and so on, they love the fact that they have other people who rely upon them. That’s the facet that makes their job/hobby/life “rewarding” for them. And isn’t that a (not so) subtle power trip?

I don’t like these overt emotional elements but the problem is that if you didn’t have these cheesy emotions accompanying these communal acts, if people were not motivated by either adrenaline urges or a self-involved sense of stoic heroism, we would not have any of these people working in the first place. At the very least, the people who did their jobs would probably hate them — and we can’t have that (unless we already do!).

Why do I care so much? My friend told me I’m like the guy who kills and takes apart the goose that lays golden eggs and is angry when he can’t find any gold inside. BUT I WANT THE GOLD SO BADLY!

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3 Responses to “Emergency Magical Technician”

  1. Civilization needs these people, and I’m not one of them. Hurrah for the non-superfluous men!

  2. can you link the original article please?

  3. Done.

    Which people are superfluous??

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