Chaos Attraction

Pieces of Flair

2003-11-19, 8:01 p.m.

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"We don't have a lot of time on this earth! We weren't meant to spend it this way. Human beings were not meant to sit in little cubicles staring at computer screens all day... filling out useless forms... and listening to eight different bosses drone on about mission statements." -Peter, Office Space.

I watched Office Space tonight for novel research. It's...kinda appropriate for today's entry, I guess.

I am generally rather annoyed with the working world of late.

I about lost it on Dave the other day when he casually told me that he and Rachel were going to go jobhunting together. Why did I lose it, you ask? Because "oh, she's gonna go quit her job today." WHY? Oh, she got in a fight with someone at work and the manager told her to suck it up. So she promptly "sicked out" for over a week.

I just thought she was crazy to do that. Over one fight? It's not like she was being sexually harassed or driven suicidal here. She didn't seem to have any hate-on for the job before this either. Why on earth would you quit in this day and age and screw yourself over? Who knows when you'll find a job again? That area has one of the highest unemployment rates around! Hasn't she learned from Dave's experience?

I admit that I yelled at him big time to tell her that quitting was stupid and she should at least have them fire her to get whatever money she still can out of them, and preferably find another job before she quit. He was all "Hmph, you're not being very sympathetic." Damn straight I'm not. How happy is she gonna be nine months from now when she STILL can't find a job and is out of money and screwed? These days I think anyone quitting without mortally serious cause is insane.

Naturally, she'd already quit before she saw him next, and of course she's not gonna get unemployment now from this. Grr. My god, that's just...dumb. And she's the smart one of the bunch!

Honestly, I just don't understand his friends and how they think. Heather tried to explain it to me last night- that they never got brought up to think they could do anything other than smoke their lives away and work fast food for their entire lives, quitting and running from crap job to crap job every other month, get knocked up/knock someone else up a few times, until they die of lung cancer. I find this incredibly depressing. (And also kind of funny that the UC system keeps going on about how they want to have a college in the Central Valley. Uh, why? Nobody there even remotely didn't hate school, if they even bothered to finish, and you can't even drag their ass to a zero-credit junior college course in their own town.)

I feel like the biggest frigging princess on earth there. Spoiled and rich and snobby and too smart. And let's face it, I am. When I'm in a place where I can barely admit to having graduated high school, and admitting to such can get a roomful of jaws to drop in TOTAL FUCKING SHOCK... you can bet your sweet ass they don't know I even went to college, much less graduated from one and work at one. As far as they know, I work some other dead-end job, and I have to pretend to be as broke as they are or else end up paying for them all to just plain eat at a restaurant.

I am relating to the fourth letter in today's Vine (probably located here later)

My thoughts:

(a) HAH! Three months without a job is NOTHING! Try six! Or more! Frankly, I have a hard time remembering when he had a job at this point. I have to count on my fingers to remember.

(b) Giving someone an ultimatum- "Get a job or I'll leave you"- is wrong and unfair. Getting a job is NOT within the fellow's control. He can't force a company to give him an interview and then hire him if they don't want to. He can't force anyone to look at his resume in the pile of 200. The most the guy can do is send out a bunch of resumes. I can understand why she'd be tempted to some degree, but that's still wrong. (And I repeat: geez, after THREE MONTHS? Hasn't she heard yet that it takes most of a year to get another job IF YOU'RE LUCKY? I know smart, talented folks that haven't gotten more than one interview in the past six months, and that went nowhere.

(c) We don't know for sure if the guy never ever sends out resumes, or if he does and they don't pay off anywhere. If it's the first one, it's understandable, in that case it sounds like he may have no intention of working if he can at all help it. (Like, say, a certain ex-friend of mine who went to school for like six or seven years or so and last I heard, is "supposed" to be applying for retail jobs because her money ran out. All those years for a teaching degree and have you even tried to teach? I seriously don't think she even applied to any schools. She didn't when we were still speaking.) If it's the second, however, well, see (b).

That said... I understand the frustration. I am pretty much burnt out after all the crap that has gone on. I'm tired of getting my hopes up. I'm equally tired of having these hopes not pan out. I have no power to change anything in the icky situation. I dread the day his unemployment ends, because right now he's *almost* making ends meet (but not quite) and is cleaned out the day he gets his check just paying bills and paying everyone he had to borrow money from after his last check. He has some actual reasonable prospects at the moment (one in particular), but I feel like I shouldn't bother to talk about those or else that'll go poof, too. I can't stand the rollercoaster ride. I'm puking and I want OFF.

And that's everyone's situation. Except for the few people that have jobs, and it sounds like both my friend Jackie and my cousin Matt will probably lose theirs by the holidays, since her company just had major layoffs and his is out of work to do. I think that'll leave just me, Hillary and Heather as the only employed folks I know around my age.

I'm sick of it all. I'm really mad. I can't do a damn thing about it.

I am snapping at Dave like, every other day now. He asks every day if I'm mad at him. I don't know what to say and so far have avoided answering the question.

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