Things I am Not… and Neither are You
I am not a consumer
I am not a client
I am not a vote
I am not a liberal
I am not a democrat
I am not a republican
I am not a libertarian
I am not a conservative
I am not a socialist
I am not a communist
I am not a marxist
I am not right wing
I am not left wing
I am not a student
I am not an employee
I am not an employer
I am not a loan recipient
I am not a credit card holder
I am not a stockholder
I am not a potential buyer
I am not a home-owner
I am not a taxpayer
I am not a resident
I am not an advocate
I am not a member of this community
I am not defined by the places the past few generations of my family were born on this planet
I am not a pawn or a key word to drop in your speech. I am not a useless, soulless number whose only purpose of existing is to have currency extracted. I have more to offer this world then you and your narrow definitions could ever realize. Imagine if you spent only a fraction of the money you do on advertising and branding, trying so hard to convince me you see me as more than a number… imagine if you spent that working on getting your people to treat me like a human being. Imagine if they didn’t need training, and they could figure that out on their own. That’s all we can do is imagine it, because it will never happen.
What right, exactly, do your robot minions have to call me and harass me and talk down to me and tell me I am worthless? Ask me why I don’t make more money, why I can’t make my interest payment? Demand I set up appointments and meetings during the middle of the day on the work week, the only time you are open. Well, you know what, I’m kind of busy working. Working very hard, every day, and it’s still not enough for you people. There is no difference between this life I lead and slavery. What freedom do I really have? I am forced to work a job I hate, made to feel inadequate and useless there, just a bag of flesh on the end of a shovel. I come home caked in mud from head to toe. In exchange, every two weeks I get a pay cheque. Not only do I not get to keep a dime of it, I actually don’t even make enough to just exist.
After rent, loan payment, food (real food, not restaurants) and maybe enough for public transit to and from work every day (often not even enough for that) that is the extent of my income. But wait, there’s still bills to pay! Things that were once luxuries are now necessities. I have to have a cell phone for work, I have to have internet access to submit my pay sheet and the latest software for the occasional contract writing or editing gig I might be able to get. You know, what I actually went to school for. A laundry card that gobbles up $20 bills like the cookie monster. Hydro, heat, phone, you can’t exist without these things and the price on all of them keeps going up and up and up.
But there is no understanding, or compassion, or humanity on the end of that phone. I’m a deadbeat right? Get a better job, you tell me. I sure do love getting career advice and condescending life lessons from someone whose job consists of phoning people and following a step by step sheet telling them what to say. I also love that the people responsible for ruining the economy and there being no good jobs left… are the ones telling me I’m the problem.
Don’t worry, you’ll soon be replaced by an automated voice system, then you can be on the wrong end of the phone call. Or, more than likely, you already are. I can’t imagine you’re getting paid all that well to sit at that desk and make those calls. I don’t think that was your dream in life, or what you are truly capable of. You do it for the same reason I do… to exist.
You probably hang up the phone and receive a call from the person two cubicles down, telling you to get a better job and make more money so you can pay your bills. Then you make that same call to client #14832.
But hey, I deserve it. It’s my fault that you put through a $10 service charge one day before the payment went through, when I had exactly the amount of money for the payment in the account. I couldn’t afford it, had to borrow it, and you know I have trouble making the payments every month. You don’t care though.
I mean who the fuck do I think I am? Going to school?! Trying to actually do what I love!??!? Trying to pursue something meaningful and fulfilling with my life. What an asshole I am! My parents aren’t wealthy, so I shouldn’t have borrowed the money. I shouldn’t have tried to make something of myself. I should have accepted that I am lower class and stayed in my fucking place. Don’t worry, I hear you readers. I know what that voice in your head is telling you, what you’re on your way to post in the comment section. You’re absolutely 100% right! I deserve this life I lead. I am a worthless, non-contributing piece of garbage. I should feel this way, every day.
“Get off your ass and get a better job you fucking loser!”
Go ahead and say it, I know that’s what you’re thinking. Trust me, I think it every day. And believe it or not, I try and change it every day too.
So does my girlfriend. So do all of our friends. So do our parents and their friends. As we all become more and more marginalized. As scores of highly intelligent, useful individuals with life experience, qualifications, degrees, careers and mortgages fill the ranks at Wal Mart, Starbucks, Home Depot and McDonalds. As we scrabble and claw and beg and plead for even the sniff of a chance to get a part-time position at minimum wage. As the mills close, the unions die, the pay-cheques shrink, the industries crumble, the tuition increases, the degrees and diplomas become obsolete. It’s all we’re good for right? It’s all that’s available, so it must mean that we’re all just that useless. We deserve to feel this way, and to live this way.
And when we’re accepted for this lofty position, they hand us our schedule and their offer for what our life is worth:
Five days a week. 20 hours a week. Minimum Wage. Take it or leave it. You’ll get a ten cent raise in two years!
That’s enough to survive on, right? Sure it is! Don’t you dare get another job either, we have to be your number one priority. After all, we’ve given you a job. In this economy, that’s better than most people can hope for. Be happy you have one. Sure it’s not even remotely enough to feed yourself, or god forbid if you have children or a sick and injured family member to take care of. Good luck with that!
But that’s okay, I heard on the news that consumer confidence is on the rebound!
Did you hear that taxpayers? The stock market is starting to stabilize! Woo hoo! Thank god almighty, I thought the CEO was going to have to sell his second Jumbo Jet. Oh how amazing, what terrific news. I can do my part to keep that stock price stable. I can look at that consumer confidence index with pride, knowing I did my part. What a glorious contribution. What a life to lead.
After all, I have no hopes and dreams and aspirations. I have no desire or decent qualities. I have no ideas, no intellect, nothing to offer this world.
I’m just a liberal, socialist, democrat, marxist, republican, conservative, libertarian voter! Who should I vote for, please tell me!? The guy who wants to go to war, or the guy who wants to go to war? I’ll vote for that guy, thanks for the choice! Oh boy, what freedom! I totally see why we want other countries to live like this. Bombs away, let’s bring freedom and democracy to those poor fools!
Sure, I’m just a student, consumer, client, loan recipient, credit card holder, employee right now, but maybe one day I can climb the ladder and into management! I can be an employer! Heck, that’s far better than anything I would have done with my life. Thank you! Thank you so much! I’ll shut up now and get back to work. I see the wisdom now. I see how wrong I’ve been. I see how fantastic this all is. I see why people so violently defend this beautiful, perfect system we have going here.
I’m gonna work hard so those taxpaying, stockholders can one day go from potential buyers into homeowners!
I am a resident of this community, and an advocate for this way of life!
Merry Christmas to All and to All a Good Night!
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Who the fuck is Danny Mendlow and why do I care what he has to say?
or get the Torrent + 4 Short Stories here:
I am a comedian, an award-winning screenwriter and blah blah blah blah… this isn’t a job interview, it’s a blog. I do write, perform and produce comedy as well as various other artistic ventures, which means that I work a lot of menial, boring, low-level jobs to sustain myself and work very hard in what little spare time I have to one day succeed at what I actually enjoy doing. My mind is probably more suited for politics than anything. Trouble is, I hate politics, swear all the time, like to tell the truth and think that politicians are essentially pure 100% evil, and mostly useless. Deep down, I’m actually a decent human being who wants to contribute ideas which would make a better life for others… so clearly I have no place in politics.
This blog will primarily consist of socially critical rants about things that I hate about our species and perhaps some suggestions as to how things could be better… but won’t.
I hold no false hopes that something I write here will change humanity for the better. No, that would actually disprove every conclusion I have come to about the human organism. In essence, I believe we are a highly pompous, self-aggrandizing, self-important micro-organism with an inferiority complex, that won’t be alive much longer. I also believe the next 30 or 40 years will be a very interesting time. I believe a lot of bad things are going to happen and a lot of people are going to die. I only hope that after all those people die (whether from war, catastrophe, disease or best of all… all three!) Perhaps something different and somewhat more progressive will emerge.
I highly doubt that will be the case. More than likely we’re all headed for either the most boring or horrific time in history. Either way, I’ll keep writing.
If you like people who complain a lot about stuff but don’t take themselves all that seriously… then you’re in the right place!
Also, I hate the word blog. It’s a stupid fucking word and we should change it.
The latest to say something about something I wrote