Thursday, August 02, 2007

I reject your outdated value system

Do you remember the lunch hour? It was one of the things that the labor movement earned for the future generations, like the weekend. Somewhere along the years, though, we pissed it away. Today it's more like half an hour at your desk while you catch up on company emails. Or you still get the full hour but it isn't on the clock. A full-time job in America was once 9:00 am to 5:00 pm [Dolly Parton, 1980]. Two decades later it's 8 to 5 or 9 to 6, and the workers will tell you, well of course, lunch doesn't count.

Of the industrialized world, the United States has the fewest vacation days on average. We get just under two weeks off a year, compared to the month-plus breaks in Western Europe. But we'll quickly point out that we make more money. About 20% more. In exchange for spending every waking moment on the job. We are the nerd at the front of the classroom consoling our lack of friends with our shiny A-pluses, when somewhere in the back of our collective brain we know that there aren't enough A-pluses in the world to score us some tail.

We are sheep. A nation of joyless, workaholic sheep. We now work 50 hours a week to get noticed and earn that promotion to manager. Then we'll work 60 hours a week to be promoted to junior VP, tack on another ten to climb the ranks, and soon enough we're running the company and sleeping only four hours a night at our desks. Then someday we'll hear Cat's in the Cradle and realize that song has become our lives. That weak ass song might as well be the new national anthem.

I for one will not let this happen to me. I reject your outdated Puritanical value system. I will not let my job define me. I will appreciate the simpler pleasures, and don't you dare condemn me for it. Don't label me "lazy" just because I won't donate half my free time to a company who doesn't give the vaguest of shits about my sad little life. Just let me sit on my couch and drink my Bud Light. As long as I have my Internet porn, my Playstation, and my Slamball on Spike TV, that's all I need to be fulfilled. Don't judge me. You don't know me.


Nick said...

I have a man-crush on Slappy.

Spinning Girl said...

Applause! Applause!

I, for one, do not suffer this malady.

I will always be poor.

But, I have 10+ weeks "off" every summer, to enjoy lazing about whilst watching my checking account dwindle down to nothing.

My favorite line in this whole post: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm [Dolly Parton, 1980].

miss kendra said...

i 100% agree.

i will never give over my life to my job, and so i will never be "successful."

too bad i'll have all that fun instead.

slappy said...

For chemical engineers, we call it the "Exxon/consulting vs. grad school" decision.

TastyMcJ said...

And that's why I'm a post-doc.

jamwall said...

Bosses don't usually fuck with me when I wear my Dolly Parton wig and a pair of fake boobs.

slappy said...

Woo postdoc. Never is the bargain more explicit that you will take less money in exchange for fewer responsibilities.

Jammer, I don't want to fall in love, no Iiiiii don't want to fall in love, with you, with you, with you...

It's Friday. Chris Isaak references are legit on Fridays here.

Tits McGee said...

I am so with Spinnerina on this one. Woo hoo teaching! Woo hoo summer vacation! I haven't had to wear underpants since June! Fuck you, The Man!