*This was first posted on Dec. 14th, 2008, during the tumultuous downturn of the economy, right after I got laid off from a publishing job. I feel that the questions I asked here are still pertinent now, and wanted to re-post.
If, workers of the world, you were suddenly told you did not have to work another day for the rest of your life, what would you do?
Oh sure, it’s fun to imagine it when you’re chained to a workplace.
But imagine for once that it’s true. What are you going to do with all of that free time?
Read books? Write that novel? Record an album? Meet up with all the friends and family you’ve been abandoning because you’re just too busy?
As my friend grapples with healing again from a years-ago car accident, learning how to just move around her room, I can’t help but wonder, what is the meaning to all of this?
Why do we get so caught up in loyalty to a corporation? A corporation, by definition, has all the rights of a human, without that very large organ in its chest pumping blood and life through it.
Today, I pledge allegiance to the entity with no heart, to serve the soulless and the corrupt, in order that I make a tiny buck.
Read the rest
Do I want to infiltrate and work inside of an organization already set up for me? Do my time? Establish contacts and network? Or do I want to cut the ribbons outside of the structure, find my own zen. Establish my own hours, rules and boundaries?
(photo credit Dandeluca)
These things have been set in motion for us, without any of our input. Join an organization. Work for a company. Do your time. Make contacts. Move ahead of the game. Join the rat race. Work for peanuts doing what you love in a prefab job set in motion by years of people who followed the so-called rules. Get a real job. Accept the facts for what they are. Don’t look at the crumbling artifice, the kinks in the chains.
Dance to your own bagpipes. Call the shots. Work for peanuts doing something you love outside of the structures set in place to straighten you out and grow hair on your chest. Motivate yourself by yourself with your own talents. With your own language outside of the box. Maybe be poor forever.
What’s a person to do? Can you be artistic in any job these days? Is the very definition of art newness, anti-conformity, living outside of the fence? Being a lone tiger in the jungle, hunting for errant prey not already captured by the lions who call the shots?
Should we live in prides or roam alone?
These are the questions I ask myself as I apply for jobs, a crap shoot really. Jobs that have been manufactured by someone else. Jobs I must fabricate myself to fit into. I keep looking for something that is ME. But I come up empty handed.
There is no rule that defines me. I haven’t built the edifice I belong to. I’m hanging on the edge of this precipice, looking out over civilization, trying to aim my feet so that I land in some area where I can find my people. A place of my own. But whichever way the wind blows. Or if there is no wind. Or if I slip, and tumble down into the brambles, with no flashlight and no tools. Just a shovel.
Which way do I jump?
That is the question.