Greetings, Fellow Carbon-Based Life-Forms.
Every time I sit down to look for a job I'm overcome by a primal fear. It's not that I'm afraid that there'll be nothing to apply for. I'm terrified by the prospects of actually getting something.
I've been toiling away for half my adult life and in all that time I can count the number of decent jobs I've had on two fingers. The first one doesn't count because it was only a make-work project and the second one shouldn't count because I was hired by my best friend. For everything before, during and after I've had to feign levels of interest and aptitude that would earn anyone a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance in a Existential Comedy.
And then there's all of the overt screwage. I can point to at least four distinct occasions in which I've been royally buggered by an employer, in spite of all my dedication, hard work and proficiency. Three out of those four times happened at the last place I worked, fer Chrissakes! But as needlessly monotonous and/or stressful as that last gig was, by far the worst part about it was having to listen to everyone bitch, moan and complain about how terrible everything was from 9:30 am to 6 pm, all day, every day. And let me tell ya, folks, after marinating in a stew of negativity like that for eight and half hours every day for three years you start to think about throwing on some Pink Floyd, climbing into a nice, warm bath and then turning your wrists into venison.
And then there are all the telling work-related Facebook notification that I see each and every day. On Friday everybody's doing back-flips, on Saturday they're livin' large, on Sunday they're paralyzed by indecision, on Monday they're all shell-shocked, on Tuesday they're all sitting underneath their desks with a loaded revolver, on Wednesday everybody unlocks a mid-week survival achievement, on Thursday they wake up hoping it's Friday and on Friday they're all back to start. Then the whole brain-damaged cycle starts up all over again.
I'm also not looking forward to being the "new guy". Y'know, the guy with zero seniority. The schmuck with the rapidly bleaching hair who can't seem to grasp things, even after fifteen quality minutes of training. The dweeb who gets to scrub the virtual toilets at 8pm on a Saturday night. The clown who gets paid with bottle caps and loose bits of string. The yahoo who stands to earn forty-eight minutes of vacation time if he can just avoid getting sick or take a day off over the next six months.
Seriously, is anyone out there happy with this arrangement? Does it make sense to spend the lion's share of our best days performing meaningless, ethereal tasks that have no positive or lingering impact on the world? Duties that you won't even remember doing a month from now? All the while surrounded by backbiting, petty, sabotaging co-workers that you just want to smoke in the head with a keyboard tray?
I know that you're gonna say: "Well, that's just the way it is." Well, I'm here to challenge that with a simple question: Why? Why do things need to be this way? Do you remember having a say in how our society operates? Have you ever asked yourself why decent jobs are so scarce? Do you ever wonder who really benefits from the current North American labor paradigm?
Insanity is often described as performing the same action over and over again and expecting different results.
Well, personally I'm tired of the insanity. I'm tired of putting my hand on an open burner just because some stranger assures me that I won't get burned this time.
FAIL-URE TO COMMUNICATE Okay look, I loves me some Jodie Foster, but if people need a friggin' Rosetta Stone to figure out what you're trying to say in your acceptance speech, then it might not have been particularly effective.