Expertise

Episode 13 – Expertise

Michael and Katherine get excited, impassioned even, to share their contrasting views on the crocktacular topic – Expertise.

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Such A Crock (@crockcast) on

First Katherine comforts all those alleged “experts” out there with their fancy degrees, medals, and framed certificates. Nobody wants to take away these accolades! Relish them. Achievements are rad. That’s a given. Thing is, as cool as they are, such accomplishments only take you so far. In the constantly evolving world we all share, sometimes that expertise can calcify and get old fast if the “expert” doesn’t adjust as needed. But issues of expertise aren’t just the fault of stodgy old farts who are unwilling to learn new things and apply them to their wheelhouse. After all, our culture puts experts on pedestals only to abruptly knock them off for kicks.

Let the Expertise Debate Commence!

The debate between Katherine and Michael launches into full effect from this point forward in the expertise crockcast. Michael claims that experience is for losers, not experts and that he cares only about execution and accountability on the job. These matter much more to him than experience when he’s hiring. Michael even speculates that maybe office jobs shouldn’t require bachelor degrees as the standard minimum when hiring anymore.

While Katherine agrees about the BA becoming less crucial, she disagrees about experience. It’s not so lame, she claims. She cites elite athletes such a marathon runners, with many miles of experience behind them before they can compete at a level that qualifies as expertise. In fact, on the very day of this podcast recording, the world marathon record was broken in Berlin by Olympian, Eliud Kipchoge. This is a runner with true expertise AND lots of experience. He won the London marathon for the third time earlier this year, for instance.

Eliud Kipchoge breaks marathon world record!

Expertise Claims to Fame

Michael expresses skepticism at the notion of expertise without outcomes to show for it. He says “show me the money, baby!” But few can actually back up their claims for expertise in Michael’s experience. On this same note, Katherine chimes in that this is all the more reason to seek expertise, to get those accolades and then nobody can take them away. Do it for the markers, in other words.

Those same outcomes that prove to Michael some semblance of worthwhile ability also serve as self esteem boosters along the road of life. That way when someone like Michael says, “Show me what you can do,” you’ve got something tangible to show. Otherwise claiming expertise is just pissing in the wind. Michael thinks this particular brand of urination caused our culture’s current crisis of conscience when it comes to hiring and assessing resumes.

The Scientific Method & Replication

Katherine does a quick shtick on the Scientific Method and why it’s come more into question these days. She discusses the process thanks to this handy dandy chart below:

Thanks for the chart ScienceBuddies.org!

As illustrated in the method, a crucial element of science is the process of reproducing experiments again after they’re initially done. Thing is, this happens less and less these days because there’s nothing fun and sexy about redoing somebody else’s experiment. Thus, the process of science is in a static state. Katherine cites some tweets scientists passed back and forth on this topic were they bemoan the lack of replication studies. Fact is, without them, the whole notion of scientific expertise lies in peril.

How did the Dinosaurs Die?

Michael then waxes nostalgic for the days of dinosaurs and their sad sad demise. He talks about how the wholly accepted theory that an asteroid destroyed them may just be knocked out by an expert named Gerta. She’s a fascinating character all on her own.

In fact, she might just be the most interesting person in the world, according to MichaelJ. That’s namely because Gerta was the impetus for the nastiest fight in all of academia. Thanks to her expertise as a Paleontologist Princeton Prof she presented an alternate theory to the cause of dinosaur mass extinction in The Atlantic Monthly.

Heartfelt Wrap-up

Katherine quotes Paris Hilton and then summarizes with a passionate plea along the lines of a Jerry Springer “Final Thought”. Thus, the notion of expertise is put to bed for the podcast and it’s time to try something new. This week Michael presents Katherine with a tasty treat test. Luckily she passes the test AND gets some yumtacular goodness in the process.

We hope you’re having as much fun with Such a Crock as we are! To show your support and share the love, Subscribe at Such a Crock – Apple Podcasts then follow us on Instagram  and our fledgling Twitter could use a boost too! Thank you for supporting the CrockCast. We love you guys! Direct Download

Espionage

Episode 11 – Espionage

Espionage is the coolest – we get it. But it also represents lots of crocktacular acts… things like stealing your boss’s computer or pretending to be something you aren’t. So, Michael and Katherine focus on the crocks while still keeping all the sexy fun parts in their spy stories.

Spy Turned Beat Cop

As sexy as espionage may seem, some spies can’t stand it. For instance, Michael shares the story of Patrick Skinner. As a CIA agent working in Afghanistan, Skinner threw it all away and came back home to become a beat cop. It’s likely the catalyst for this extreme lifestyle shift was a great loss he suffered when his dear friend, a fellow agent, died on the job in Afghanistan.

All the grieving etc. got Skinner thinking that beat cops contribute more to make the world a better place than a CIA agent on the other side the world. Some might say that’s the biggest crock of all… but it certainly helps Skinner sleep at night. So, who are we to judge? Just a coupla crocksters.

Espionage = Corporate Competitive Intelligence

Katherine shares a story from the mid-90s when she worked in advertising and got swept into shifty corporate shenanigans. Although KFlo has never been much of a “good girl” sometimes even the naughtiest of us have to do what’s right. After all, who better to unmask a heathen than a fellow barbarian? Ever wondered what happens when competitive intelligence wins and loses clients in a corporate environment? Listen to this part of the podcast… shhhhhhh.

The Culper Ring

Spying seems like a modern phenomenon but Michael shares the fascinating story of the Revolutionary War spy ring. Under orders from General George Washington, this batch of spies were the first American intelligence agents.

They did crucial work during the war including revealing Benedict Arnold. Surprisingly they not only had a female member but also Hercules Mulligan, owner of the coolest name in the those early American days of yore. The Culper Ring prevented assassinations and protected our beautiful country in her infancy. So, what’s the crock? Well, Michael’s attempt at rapping the Hamilton lyrics relevant to the Culper Ring probably counts as a crock.

Famous & Fabulous False Fronts

Ya think you know someone… but do you? Not according to history. Even celebrities with lots of biographies and articles written about them have secret lives. Thus, Katherine discusses four examples from the WWII era when many famous people secretly worked as spies. These people were uber celebrities that kept their secret spy lives on the down low. Curious who they are? Check out the podcast to find out more. The stories might surprise you.

Best Part of all… Spying Creates Jobs, Baby

What’s the bright side to all this? Michael points out that there’s a major gap in our culture right now with a need for cybersecurity.  In fact, pretty much anyone with a certificate in cybersecurity can get a job in a flash these days. What feels better than being wanted? Well, here’s your ticket to being the MOST desirable candidate on the block. Get yourself an online certificate in cybersecurity and then watch your phone blow up and those emails come rolling in!

We love bringing you Such a Crock each week. So, if you’re having fun too please subscribe at Such a Crock – Apple Podcasts and follow us on Instagram. Thank you for supporting the CrockCast!

Direct Download

Cults

Episode 8 – Cults

Cults are SUCH A CROCK

Monday, August 13th…

A post shared by Such A Crock (@crockcast) on

Michael and Katherine explore the crock of Cults with a variety of insights. K kicks it off with the Merriam Webster definition and both agree it’s too vague to be helpful.

So, what would be helpful? Katherine has asked herself, “Am I in a cult?” at least a few times… and not just in spinning class. She offers a list of ways to use as a guide when faced with that crucial question.

Many are drawn from a CBS News online article which interviews cult expert, Steve Echoil, head of the International Cultic Studies Association. As Katherine ponders the list, the duo discuss examples of each item as it applies to their own experiences.

In fact, Michael joins the cult discussion with a fond memory from childhood – the world of Dungeons and Dragons. Turns out it was Such a Crock when propaganda pamphlets in his small town pointed to his beloved D&D as a training ground for occult practices.

Check out this cartoon at Chick Publications

But as Katherine and Michael point out, the 80s were rife with accusations of cult practices and devil worship. Such fears were as common in 80s pop culture as parachute pants and Annie perms.

Speaking of the 80s, Katherine just finished watching the wondrous TV show The Americans, a 1980s period piece about Russian spies in the USA. She mentions it because the organization EST, oft called a cult, plays a major role in the show. Turns out EST actually helped lots of people and doesn’t really qualify as a cult.

Michael then brings the cult talk to the finish line with an actual real life cult currently in the news.  Nxivm, pronounced (Nex-ee-um) has been around for about a decade and makes headlines on the reg. That’s not just because they brand their members but also because they have some celebrities all up in there. In fact, that’s exactly what piqued Michael’s interest – a certain Smallville actress who is currently out on bail for Nxivm naughtiness.

Learn lots more with a listen to our podcast this week. It’s a crock that’s chock full of silliness and cult-like experiences. You might learn something but it’s fun to listen along either way.

As always, we’d love you to subscribe at Such a Crock – Apple Podcasts or followed us on Instagram. Thanks for listening!

Direct Download

Auto Updates

Episode 6 – Computer & Phone Updates

Automatic updates are such a crock! In today’s podcast, Michael and Katherine discuss how computer and phone updates bedevil on a near-biblical basis.

A post shared by Such A Crock (@crockcast) on


Computer & Phone Updates

Automatic Windows Updates are SUCH A CROCK

Michael shares the story of his “$1,500 paperweight” … aka Alienware PC.

An automatic Windows update knocked out his computer. That was bad enough. But then the good people at Microsoft sent him a link to fix it. Things got even worse from there. Turns out, Microsoft Help sent him a broken link. You can’t make this up.

Thus, an automatic Windows update killed our hero’s computer. He brought it to the local Microsoft Store. There, Michael learned that automatic update knockouts are common killers. The Microsoft Store volunteered to fix the computer “for free”. But even after that, it’s still pretty darn dead. Had the update been a choice, he might still have a working PC. But like many computer and phone updates these days, it was automatic. The kiss of death.

What you THINK about these updates is SUCH A CROCK

Katherine shares the truth behind automatic updates… And it’s fascinating.

“A common perception is that updates merely fix defects. However, one study indicates over 80% of maintenance effort is used for non-corrective actions. This perception is perpetuated by users submitting problem reports that in reality are functionality enhancements to the system. More recent studies put the bug-fixing proportion closer to 21%.

“Sometimes called a patch, an update is a set of changes to a computer program or its supporting data designed to update, fix, or improve it. This includes fixing security vulnerabilities and other bugs, with such patches usually being called bug fixes, and improving the usability or performance. Although meant to fix problems, poorly designed patches can sometimes introduce new problems sometimes called software regressions. In some cases updates even break the functionality or disable a device.”

Learn more at The Balance: The Difference Between Software Updates and Upgrades

Planned Obsolescence with Computer and Phone Updates is SUCH A CROCK

Michael finds Apple just as annoying for computer and phone updates.

For instance, in a different new laptop tribulation, he rants and raves about the new MacBook Pro’s lack of USB ports.

USB ports are universal necessities for most people. Do you charge your phone? How about record with a mic? Pulling these ports deprives you of access to these common computer needs.

We wrapped up the podcast with an ode to last week’s serving size discussion. Specifically, Michael tried a 100 calorie serving size packet of tasty cashews. Turns out that’s about a handful of yummy.

Direct Download

As always, please subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts and check out our instagram @crockcast for pictures and fun posts for our favorite crocks.