Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Love and light. Love. And. Light.

Yesterday, in all seriousness, I asked my boss to please consider me for a redundancy. They're going round, you see, and I want one. It surprised me to realise that the last time I wanted anything so much was the summer I spent waiting to find out if would get into university in Sydney. I wanted it so - mostly as an excuse, a prompt, a forced action forcing me to act. I got what I wanted then. I even took a degree, eventually. I have the same kind of want now. It's the boot up the arse that I need to move on because at the moment I am well and truly stuck. I know I've been saying for years, so long now that even I can't bear to think, how much I hate my job, how awful it is, how it couldn't get worse. Ha. Well, never say never, I suppose. The last year, the last six months especially, have been repeated slaps to a well beaten face.
It surprises me, as so much seems to these days, how hard a worker I am. Give me a hobby or housecleaning or study and I will procrastinate until the stars fall from the sky. Add money to the equation and I behave very differently. I thought, really, that everyone had the same work/money mental contract as me. The years have disillusioned. Whatever. I don't suppose it's relevant now or ever will be. I'm not even sure why I mention it. A single virtue in a sea of dishonour (not mine, I assure you). A virtue whose timing is wrong. One that ceases to be a virtue as it is a barrier to my achieving my objective. I am sure its time will come again, oh one day, one day. I do work hard though. I thought I word as hard as I possibly could but every week, every day, I've worked that bit harder. I've worked harder for the same money and the same money as those who barely work. I've worked harder knowing that the people I work for hold me and my colleagues in contempt and blame their workers for the disintegration of their integration. I have worked so hard for men who cannot take responsibility - either publicly or privately (if it was private then it was very private indeed) - for their failures. I have worked until it felt like my mind was dissolving and my throat was bleeding and my chest was bursting with the tension of being professional under the pressure of blame - under the you you you accusative. I've worked hard for these not-men men and I have had enough. Were it that this was enough. Would that my will would crumble and I could ignore the work and just plod along doing not nearly enough. Doubtless I would achieve my objective then.
I climb down from my self made pedestal. I put (some of) my colleagues up there instead. They have worked so hard for so little. A small amount of money and endless criticism. They have put in hours that would make a god and every unionist in the world cry. They have worked hard to maintain and build and send profit into the pockets of the already and undeservedly wealthy. They have made men who belittle them look good, or if not good, far better than they are. Some of them will, no doubt, lose their jobs for this. At this stage none of us really mind. I do see the awfulness of this and the inherent unfairness. I see it on the faces of my colleagues and I hear it in their voices. I also see the humour that after working so hard at and for our jobs we would be more than willing to give them up for a few week's grace. All of us, really, would like to quit on our own terms but few can give up the reality for the ideal. The reality is that working like this is exhausting. It is draining on every level. To work like this is the end of a decent life outside - and there isn't even a pot of gold at the end of it. (It reminds me of a Russian woman I heard voicing her world view on the bus. The rich, apparently, all deserve all their money because they work so hard for it. People are poor because they do not work hard enough. They, in a sense, deserve their poverty. So clean, so clear, so easy, so very wrong. Her stupidity annoyed me so much but I digress.) They, and I, work so hard that we go home exhausted. The pursuit of new pastures is rendered impossible in cries of later, later, maybe tomorrow. And the next day is the same, and the next. And slowly it's gotten so bad that all of life is dragging from one day to the next and trying to hold it together. All for money and recognition for someone else.
I am exhausted now. I want my pay out. I want to go. You're getting rid of people, perfectly good, hard-working people, just make me one of them. I want to go. I won't scream. I may cry at leaving so many friends behind but I won't ever cry about the end of my slavery. Let me go. Give me the money and let me go.

19 comments:

Mark said...

I'm applying for p/t clerical & reception jobs at the moment. Found some good ones on the gov't board. You should try it, if only for practice at addressing selection criteria.

Ross said...

Mark, here are three reasons why I can't imagine you as a receptionist:

(a) You almost have a PhD.
(b) You say dude a lot.
(c) You are not female enough.

nailpolishblues said...

Mark, my sister, who is supposed to email these things because she has a public service job and far too much time on her hands, has been very remiss about this. I shall beat her with a stick for it just as soon as I next see her.

Ross, I know doctors, actual medical doctors who put tubes into machines and then remove them for a living and/or are security guards. I suspect that in this brave new world a PhD is almost under qualified for a reception job. Aside from this, can Mark be vacuous and spend hours filing his nails? We both know he's only an almost PhD because he's a beauty school dropout.

Mish said...

But you have no plan B? If you get redundancy you still need to either get another job or marry rich.

nailpolishblues said...

Either way I need to get another job. No thought of it being otherwise. The redundancy - since they're being handed out - would be useful. And I'd prefer it to what's been happening lately.

JahTeh said...

Nails, it's almost like the Chinese 'death by a thousand cuts' except the cuts are to your mind.
When the husband of 30 years left me, I felt my mind reparing itself from those cuts so my advice is to leave now. Run don't walk and try to run over a few of the bastards as you do.

nailpolishblues said...

JahTeh, if I could just walk I would but I have nothing to live until I get a new job. So no going anywhere until I get one. I dislike the way this entire situation has been handled far more than I can articulate. I look forward to it being not my problem.

Alexis, Baron von Harlot said...

Nails, are you not blogging til you get your redundancy? Is this the industrial action of the future?

Hope you, and fings, are okay.

nailpolishblues said...

Alexis, alas, it seems that redundancy is unlikely though they may still sack me for constantly using inappropriate language that is unbecoming to a young lady in an allegedly professional environment. Oh joy. The absence stems from having not much to say, writing hideous government job applications which are both dull and brain frying, and from the physical drain that is summer heat. I'm sure I'll get it back together someday. Thank you, though :)

Alexis, Baron von Harlot said...

Ach, the government job applications. I've watched people do them. GOOD LUCKS!

nailpolishblues said...

They're so much fun I'm thinking of adding them to my top ten all time favourite things to do ever. Thanks for the lucks, I think I shall need all of them.

Lucy said...

Hello pet, just checking to make sure all is well?

Caz said...

Do hope you are well Nails, not killed under a collapsing pile of government selection criteria, nor banished to the streets of Kings Cross for swearing once too often in a professional environment.

If one is simply quietly persistent, whiny even, sometimes redundancy can mysteriously materialize. Still keeping fingers crossed for you.

nailpolishblues said...

Lucy, I live, just lacking inspiration and caught up in other things. I'm sure I'll resume sooner or later.

Caz, I pretty much am trapped under a collapsed pile of government selection criteria. Interview on the morrow. Have just finished ironing clothes and hair and am about to read things again...

TimT said...

I miss this blog and refuse to believe that it has died. Maybe the reason we haven't heard from it is because it has chronic fatigue syndrome or something. PLEASE UPDATE! With, say, a pleasant post insulting the idiotic job interviewers you've faced up to in the previous month, or something.

nailpolishblues said...

You blogger types are a persistent bunch, aren't you?

Tim, you seriously over-rate my success rate. Only one interview and I shan't insult them until I officially find out that they did not warm to my fumbling-bumbling-computer/socially inept charm.

Ms Rachy said...

I never thought I would hear myself say this in the current economic climate, but I truly hope you get made redundant.

One of my friends did a similar thing about one and a half years ago and she is in an amazingly better place now, it was most definitely the kick up the backside she needed.

And think of the positive stuff, while looking for a new job you could go and do nerdy stuff like volunteering at a museum or a similarly interesting institution.

So anyway, more power to you sistah! It certainly takes a brave person to attempt making this step in the current climate.

I'm eagerly watching this space :-)

nailpolishblues said...

Alas, Rachy, they discovered too late that they needed most of the staff they made redundant and are presently trying to woo a number of them back. The less fortunate of us, who have been slaving for the last four months in extreme horror, are attempting to escape any which way. The chance of redundancy has long since passed. A pity, really, as it was a bright spark in an otherwise gloomy environment.

I shall have to just keep trying to get a new job.

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