The decision to leave my day job came in a rush. I hadn’t planned to leave till 2010, but was presented with a use-it-or-lose-it situation as regards the pension. The corporation that employed me, like most in the notoriously venal grocery industry, simply saw inflated corporate bonuses and record profits as being of more value than rewarding employee loyalty.
In my haste to start working for a CEO who exhibits a bit more respect for all my hard work (namely, me), I didn’t really have time to do one thing that the world’s prototype Squishtoid really should do [hangs head in shame] :
Publish a manifesto. And I promise I will do that, one of these eras. Suffice it to say that while my pursuit is one of freedom from insipid corporate stupidification and a quest for real craft, it’s also a pursuit of the meaning and value of time, especially time creatively spent with other people, whether at work, play, or simply in good conversation.
There’s quite a bit needs to be done in the US that won’t get done until Americans cop to the fact that we have conceded too much of our precious time to banal corporate interests who give little but coupon discounts in return. Health care is one issue that sticks out in this regard. We treat it as some kind of separate issue in a list of issues without seeing it as integral to our basic quality of life. Like respect, dignity and the simple freedom to spend time with our loved ones, health is something that corporate America spends billions of dollars creating the illusion that they provide. At the same time, billions of other dollars are spent in making sure that these things are placed well behind profits in public policy making. Making us the laughingstock of cultures that we often, and superficially, treat as laughingstocks. Like France.
And in health care, if nowhere else, he who laughs last…
I intend to move forward, and create a positive place for myself in my new (working) life. And I acknowledge that I AM one of the few who did, indeed, escape (barely) with a pension. But I couldn’t help but notice that others are starting to look at these issues. For now, I’m going to let this gentleman wrestle with the big questions. Out of the Office, a look at workplace wars in the New Yorker.
PS Thanks to you guys who have left comments. I’m having a hard time getting the site to recognize my profile to return comment, though I comment in other blogs all the time. In researching the issue, I see that this is a common problem around here. Hopefully, soon…
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Thanks for newyorker article, hadn’t heard of Pirsig in years, somehow thought of him in a rubber room somewhere. John Ruskin? –inspired Hubbard and his Roycrofters. This crafty work talk, smaller/better, slow food etc, reminds me of a couple of recent reads, mostly “World Made by Hand,” James Kunstler’s lightweight fiction sequel to his “The Long Emergency.” The latter, along with Kevin Phillips “Bad Money” are recent books that seem to have foretold recent events. I like people who can predict the future.