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Life at Work

Well, I've done it all. I've worked. And I've not worked. And I can't say either one really fulfilled my expectations.

Of course, I've done both before, but this little experiment left a particularly weird taste in my mouth. Some days, the work experience was glorious, but it was never the actual work that was so great. It was the people who made it great. Pat, and Large Marge, and all the downtown folks, and the feeling of crossing Daley Plaza in the sunlight, and all the groovy little cultural festivals. Hell, even the easy access to Starbucks when the 10 a.m. yawns hit was pretty cool. But having someone lurk over your shoulder or scream at you for your mistakes, or worse, for his mistakes, or tell you on a regular basis that you just DON'T FUCKING LISTEN and WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU?, that I don't miss.

Then there's the not working. At first, it's great. I mean, yeah, you're worried about money and what you're going to do next, and you're soured on your former profession. But you get to sleep in and stay up late and go out late and everyone else in your building's gone all day so if you wanna crank The Who at ear-shattering decibels all afternoon, you're welcome to. It's especially satisfying to do that when the real estate agent who's trying to sell the building comes by with prospective buyers.

But not working becomes miserable pretty quickly. I mean, most of the people you know are at work, so there's no one to really hang out with. You're sending out a ton of resumes and no one's calling. Even the temp agencies don't have anything for you. Thumbs up to W. for our excellent economy. Remember the Clinton years when you could lose your job and have a new one five minutes later? Sigh.

Interestingly, every branch of the armed forces is recruiting on Web job sites, and the CIA is recruiting on cable TV. Pretty sad that the only industries that need employees are the ones that are losing them in Vietnam. I mean Iraq.

Well, Bird's got different things to contemplate these days. And there's only so much you can say about sitting around your apartment all day. Take care of yourselves. And if you ever run into my ex-boss, give him a swift kick in the balls for me, will ya?

J. Bird is/was the Beachwood's pseudononymous workplace affairs correspondent. Bird, however, didn't "fit in" at work and suddenly became the Beachwood's unemployment affairs correspondent shortly after beginning this column. Look for Barista! Tales From the Coffee Front in this space starting Monday.



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Posted on October 5, 2006


MUSIC - The Weekend In Chicago Rock.
TV - Cricket vs. Brexit.
POLITICS - An Odd Call From Bermuda.
SPORTS - All Is Not Forgiven, Bears.

BOOKS - Turning Points Of The Civil War.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Baxter's IV Bag Shortages.


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