Years ago I preferred clever people. There was a joy in beholding a mind bearing thoughts quickly translated into words, or ideas expressed in a new way. I find now that my taste has changed. Verbal fireworks often bore me. They seem motivated by self-assertion and self-display. I now prefer another type of person; one who is considerate, understanding of others, careful not to break down another person’s self-respect. My preferred person today is one who is always aware of the needs of others, or their pain and fear and unhappiness, and their search for self-respect. I once liked clever people. Now I like good people."V" sent me this because we are beginning to realize this same bottom-line, despite the enormous differences in the professional and geographic contexts within which we live and work.
I wish I had this quote with me a few months ago when I was asked about my non-participation at faculty meetings anymore!