Tag Archives: Work

Streak Day #26 Sucks (and bitching about coworkers)

Today is Monday, my hangover day. It being my hangover day, I’m usually dragging my ass through the day trying to scrounge up any and all motivation that I can find. I woke up at like 8 a.m., and feeling really shitty and hungover drank the remaining three Coronas (lol) from the 12-pack. I felt better and went back to sleep. I woke up at 2:20 p.m. giving me about an hour until I needed to leave for work. I chugged a Bang energy drink and sat around doing fuck-all until work.

I went to work and had another Bang energy. 600 mg of caffeine in three hours. Yeehaw. I had electricity running through my veins, a nervous shaking fueled by my hangover, caffeine, nicotine, and it being cold out. There was probably a moderate risk of me having an anxiety attack or a heart attack but I survived.

But what about the blog? Wasn’t I double-shifting tonight? Yeah, whatever, I’ll figure something out later. Put your back against the wall and fight against the midnight deadline. I’d have to post from my phone from work, but surely I could churn something out.

Work went to hell quickly with our first plane showing up a whopping two hours late. Somewhere in the two hours we got like a half-hour break and I sat in our crew van trying to muster some motivation to do anything. Read Wheel of Time? Write the damn blog post? Listen to music? I didn’t want to do anything.

And then a coworker started talking to me. Well, wait, let’s backtrack a bit.

I like to take my breaks mostly alone and in silence. I don’t eat food, I don’t socialize very much, and I try to lay low. The past year I had a tiny break room all to myself, and then we hired a bunch of seasonals that started shitting the place up. I then started bringing my bluetooth stereo thingy into work and camping out in the crew van listening to music. I had a little safe zone of solace, but apparently no place is safe anymore.

We have this one guy who I won’t name who is impossible to be around. He is literally one of the dumbest people I have ever met. Despite this, I still can’t quite put a finger on what bothers me about him, it almost seems like a little bit of everything. Something about him is so immensely frustrating and grating on the nerves that I can’t stand being around him for more than a few minutes.

So I sat there totally spacing out trying to figure out what to do. Obviously this coworker was still camped in the van for some reason. It’s not like it’s my van, my personal break area on wheels, but it also kinda is. He usually goes upstairs and lurks (sometimes in my old break room; another reason why I don’t go there anymore) but for some reason he’s been camping in the van the past few weeks.

I grabbed my book which usually means I’m about to read and he started talking to me about…you guessed it, the goddamn coronavirus. Jesus Christ. I’ve complained before that I’m sick of hearing about it; sure it’s okay to talk about in passing but I’m just sick of having big elaborate discussions about it especially since I’m losing so much goddamn money in the stock market. It’s a sore subject for me. And of course that’s what he talked to me about for ten fucking minutes. “When is this quarantine supposed to end? Yeah, I hung out with my friend yesterday — I think the media is blowing it out of proportion — the H1N1 virus wasn’t that big of a deal.” And something about the federal government and quarantines. Somehow this guy was totally lost on the fact that the states are the ones tossing up quarantines, not the federal government. Anyone ever hear of the federal system? I was about ready to scream, yet being my usual kind and thoughtful self forced myself to sort of socialize with him even though I was dying by 1,000 papercuts to my ear and my brain.

Luckily, my friend hopped in the van shortly afterwards and I gave her this fucking wide-eyed scowl and just stared at her; it was obvious what my problem was and she knew it immediately. Everyone on the crew feels the same way about this guy. Luckily I was able to direct my attention to a conversation with her and mostly ignore the other guy. I felt kinda bad but also not very bad. I hate talking to this guy and sometimes you need to look out for yourself. It sucks not being a saint or a Buddhist Monk at all times in your life, but I’m neither of those and am as flawed as anyone else. I’m guilty of being a douchebag but sometimes I don’t have the patience to suffer out of politeness.

Last week we were all in the van and I was trying to read. Another frustrating thing about this guy is he’s the type to force his way into any conversation no matter how oblique he is to it. It’s okay to be around two people talking and not be part of it if it doesn’t relate to you at all. Someone mentioned that they went out and did yard work this weekend and he had to point out that he hates gardening; he can’t make plants grow and they always die on him. Big conversation about gardening and how he’s awful at it. Okay. Someone had food in the van; he had to mention that he likes cooking and then shit all over his wife because she isn’t a good cook. She got her terrible cooking skills from her dad because he can’t cook either! Awesome bro! Good to know!

ANYWAYS, I was trying to read and he was butting into every conversation going on in the van. He even asked me what book I was reading. I said Wheel of Time and he asked if it was good. Well, I probably wouldn’t be reading it if I fucking hated it. How do you even point something as obvious like that out to someone? He then talked about how he can’t read anything that’s long or boring (I’m assuming without pictures too…) and just, urgh. He kept talking and I kept trying to read but anytime he talked my mind would instantly lose focus and direct attention to whatever dumbass thing he was going on about to my coworkers. I couldn’t do it. I had another two hours on break and it took about five minutes to read a paragraph because of him talking and his voice. Eventually I abandoned ship van and headed upstairs to the supervisors’ office. I don’t like to barge in there and shit the place up, but once again sometimes you need to be selfish. I made sure to stress that I just wanted to read and wasn’t trying to socialize with the bosses or intrude onto others: I just needed a quiet and safe spot away from my dumbass coworkers.

We are trying to make some effort to accomodate the guy so he doesn’t feel left out of forgotten about at work. This is good in a way, but it’s also making him more talkative which is stressing everyone else out. You know, try to see everything in a positive light and appreciate everyone as their own, unique person. Everyone brings something to the table, right? Thoughts about how people pissing you off is your own problem, and maybe you can learn something from them in how they make you mad. All of those wonderful and all-encompassing views of humanity and how we’re all the same, struggling through the same problems. This view works great with people you love to be around, but this guy makes me think that maybe all of that lovey, dovey bullshit is, well, bullshit.

And I don’t like to take the Taoism approach of “bad people make the good people good” because goddamnit it’s frustrating. I really think I could appreciate the people I appreciate without a coworker who’s grating on the nerves, but maybe Taoism in onto something. Who knows. I wasn’t trying to make any big or grand points to teach anyone anything here; I just wanted to bitch and bitch I did. Mission Accomplished.

The Weekend Sucks

To start this off let me state that this is the 99th post on this blog. Wow. As anyone who blogs knows, starting is always the hardest part and you find yourself constantly filled with anxiety about how you can continue to write posts. Like it was a struggle to write the first, second, third, tenth, twentieth post and how can you keep going? But 100? Shit. I’ve almost done it. I’ve been planning to elaborate on that in the next post — the 100th one — and have been wanting to just bullshit my way through the 99th one which is this one. Not that I’m not mildly inspired, but after a week of working nonstop 12-hours days I just want to get something out, even if it is subpar. (And by it being “subpar” everyone will probably fucking love it for some reason.)

I hit a wall of depression last weekend. And looking back on most of my depressive episodes I’ve realized they mostly happen on the weekend. My mood throughout the week is like clockwork; on Monday I’m kinda lethargic and depressed but don’t think about things, and on Tuesday through Thursday I’m great. I’m at work and busy. Any free time before 4:00 p.m. is filled with coffee drinking blogging/writing stories and then I go to work. This is why I always seem to have a post up on Monday or Tuesday, it’s just my flow or something trying to capitalize on my free time before work. Friday is a really slow off-day where I’m like gearing up for my weekly weekend depressive episode with going to work at 7 p.m.; I’m given enough off-time where I get antsy and don’t know what to do but ultimately still have work to distract me. And then Saturday and Sunday are hell. Some weeks are worse than others, but they’re always really shitty.

With all the hours I’ve been working lately something has been painfully obvious to me: keeping busy keeps a depressive’s mind off of being depressed. Literally for 12 hours each day in the past three weeks I have been so busy to where I cannot reflect or overthink anything about my life. I wrote a quick fictional chapter over at my other blog about my daily routine and while quite a bit is exaggerated for effect the general theme is true. I wake up at 9 a.m. and pound caffeine for an hour until I go to work. I then deal with total chaos and bullshit until my hour or two lunch break. This is usually filled with tagging along with coworkers to a restaurant or their house or whatever. (My car is out of service so I’m driving an uninsured and non-exhaust-equipped 1997 Saturn SL 2 to work everyday. Coworkers offer to shuttle me around between shifts so I don’t have to really think about what I’m going to do. I just tag along.) Then it’s back to work for my second shift. I get off around 10 p.m. and dick around for a few exhausted hours at home playing video games and drinking tea until I go to bed. Repeat for weeks. Grind away with each little problem that arises without care for the general direction of life. Doing this I’m perfectly and happily distracted.

Until the weekend that is. I think it’s made worse by the hours I’m working. When you work six days straight and are so constantly busy that you can’t get your bearings you simply don’t have time to think. No time to reflect upon the position and trajectory of your life. To think about how other people perceive you. No time to think about how you’ll actually die one day, really, and that it is inevitable as the sun rising in the morning. And how every day, hour, and minute you piss away is wasting away the very gift of life that you own. No time to shit all over yourself for not keeping up with writing/blogging like you should’ve been doing. No time to think about all the things you’ve said at work and ponder how they’re received by your coworkers. No time to question if everyone only acts like they like you while secretly hating you. No time to let your mind wander to where you see yourself as the odd-man out, the lonely person that isn’t really part of the group, the excluded one. There are others and then there is you: singular, alone, trapped in a box and unable to bond with anyone. No time to wonder why you feel this way even though there is no reason to do so. The weekend gives me plenty of time for all of these pointless, illogical, and dark feelings to well up in my mind and overwhelm me.

Making it worse is the fact that it’s all so damn irrational. I’ve finally found some self-esteem. I realize that I’m a likeable person, at least towards those I actually want to be likeable towards. Yet the weekend gives me these random thoughts that I’m just not busy enough to kill. I think I almost crave the hellish work of life, because that is what keeps my mind from overthinking and wandering to darker things that lurk around in my head. I really do hate being as busy as I’ve been, but it’s been keeping me sane and happy. Dumb, unaware, and unthinking but fucking happy. It reminds me of animals who live their day-to-day lives in total peace and seemingly unawareness. They just do what they need to do and don’t overthink like us stupid humans do.

I don’t know. Maybe I should try to have a weekend hobby or something, but the problem here is hobbies are optional and I would never purposefully subject myself to the type of hell that was work even if it does make me happy. “Why don’t you just constantly write on the weekends dude?” you might ask. Well, you can’t force yourself to write for two days straight if you’re not inspired and writing also involves some degree of self-introspection that can bring about the dark feelings that I’m trying to avoid. I don’t have a solution to the problem; I hate the weekends for the same reason that I hate vacations and I don’t know how to fix the problem.

So there it is: number 99.

Double-Shifting (and Boredom) Sucks

It is the key to modern life. If you are immune to boredom, there is literally nothing you cannot accomplish.

-David Foster Wallace
…one of these hideous bastards. Note the stubby and goofy looking wings.

I’m currently sitting in a van on the cargo ramp at UPS. The current time is 11:17 a.m. and my crew (consisting of about 9 people) is scheduled to unload an Airbus A300 cargo airplane due to arrive at 12:09 p.m. It’s a little less than an hour away. And what will we do in the meantime? Nothing: we sit. This is what we do at UPS. The motto tossed around to new-hires is usually this: Hurry Up and Wait. I’ve been there so long that it’s basically lost its meaning to me.

The coworker in the front seat has his phone’s volume on full-blast playing some shitty mobile game. I don’t even know what game it is or if it’s even shitty, but it’s a mobile game so it probably is shitty. Also considering the certain coworker that’s playing it leads me to think it’s certainly a shitty game. I hear the cheap sound-effects of change clinking and crowds cheering feebly spewing out of the phone’s minuscule speaker which gives the sound a tinny quality. It’s like someone rubbing crumpled aluminum foil directly on your eardrums. The coworker next to me sometimes glances over in my direction and his breath is terrible. The people in the rear of the van — a Chevy passenger van that seats about 15 people fully loaded — are small-talking that everyone does when there is nothing to actually talk about. Because silence in and of itself is terrifying and scary. Two coworkers are in the back silent ripping away on their vapes. At least they’re not bothering anyone so I give them credit for that.

I’m working the UPS day-shift this year because there is no reason not to work it. UPS is a union job so it’s all-around a pretty comfy affair. Our contract with the company dictates that anything worked over five hours in a day is time-and-a-half pay: my typical $19.95 wage skyrockets to nearly $30 after the fifth hour. In a nine-hour day we’re taking some serious money here, and because I’m bored trying to kill time and math is something fun to do, this is a gross daily pay of exactly $219.45. Holy shit. Maybe double shifting isn’t too bad after all? While the money is good it’s not my primary reason for working the extra shift in a twisted sort of way if you can believe it. I’m a bum. I don’t do anything productive. I usually sleep and write during the scheduled day-shift hours. Sometimes I play video games. There is no reason not to work because making $30 an hour is hard to pass up when you literally have nothing better to do.

My typical shift at UPS is the twilight shift, 4:30 to 9:30 p.m. By doubling on days I work an 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m. shift with an hour-ish lunch break in between. And why can I pick up these extra shifts around this time of year? Because I work at UPS. We deliver boxes. And it’s December. Fucking think about it. We’re being swamped by packages and UPS as a company throws around money with complete disregard simply to get people like me to stick around longer than usual, take extra shifts, and get those damn packages shipped. Mostly so the stereotypical American in the fury of Christmas Holiday shopping doesn’t become pissed that their boxes showed up a day or two late. Weeks before Christmas the Holiday itself obviously, but still they will be very upset nonetheless.

Knowing the shift was going to be terribly long and boring I brought in something to read: David Foster Wallace’s The Pale King. I almost feel bad complaining about taking extra shifts where I have enough downtime to read a book, write blog posts, and get paid nearly $30 an hour to do so, but the way anyone gauges anything is from their own relative personal experiences and it’s difficult for me to see anything that pisses me off in a positive light even if it is, logically, a positive thing. I hate being bored even if $30 is being thrown at me every single hour.

I started reading the book about a month ago and became bored, yes bored, about halfway through and only recently began reading it again (curious timing, looking back on it). The major complaints about the book are that it’s boring as hell, and even throughout the book the author explains (or maybe it was in the forward?) that the book is almost meant to be boring. Wallace’s most well-known novel Infinite Jest had it’s moments where it lagged a bit, but was a much more riveting story overall. Hell, The Pale King is about IRS employees and the whole IRS being central to the story almost forces it to be a boring story. So it’s not that Wallace is just a boring writer, it seems that he made the book boring on purpose. It’s the theme of the book: boredom. While I don’t know exactly what he is trying to say about boredom, I know he is trying to say something about it. And the book forces you to face the boredom directly; it doesn’t talk about boredom as much as it forces you to live through it by boring you to death. Some chapters are so full of random boring details about forms, procedures, codes, and acronyms that it had to be a conscious choice on the author’s part. And in my current bored state of double shifting, the novel seems like the universe’s way of talking directly to me (again). I find myself immensely engaged with the story that is so bland and devoid of anything obviously purposeful at all.

I realize that what I’m scared of with my extra work hours is not being burned out, or not having enough free time, but of being bored. Something about being bored is a personal affront to my very being it seems. My normal UPS shift forces me to find things to do for sometimes literal hours, and by taking on a second shift I get to double my boredom! And in some ways it’s worse than that; by working a nine or ten-hour day my phone inevitably dies. No writing. No blogging. No social media. No music. No internet. Nothing. Sometimes the work is so chaotic that the boredom comes in bursts here and there and doesn’t allow you enough time to sit down, relax, think, read, or grasp onto your fading sanity. It’s work just to stop minutes later. And then work again. And then stop. It’s Hurry Up and Wait. Let’s also not forget the one or two-hour lunch wedged in between the shifts either. Not enough time to go home and relax but long enough where you can’t sit around at work. Hence me grabbing McDonald’s, sitting in a parking lot at the end of runway 25 at KRFD and watching planes take-off and land. Like this:

And reading the book I run into this, the end of which I quoted at the top of this post:

The underlying bureaucratic key is the ability to deal with boredom. To function effectively in an environment that precludes everything vital and human. To breath, so to speak, without air.

The key is the ability, whether innate or conditioned, to find the other side of the rote, the picayune, the meaningless, the repetitive, the pointlessly complex. To be, in a word, unborable. I met, in the years 1984 and ’85, two such men.

It is the key to modern life. If you are immune to boredom, there is literally nothing you cannot accomplish.

-D.F.W., The Pale King

The universe compels me to listen to what it’s trying to tell me. Apparently this time the universe works through the dead author David Foster Wallace and his unfinished novel The Pale King. And if Wallace in his boring-ass book is right, and if double shifting is as torturingly boring as it is so far, well, it looks like I’m well on my way to success, maybe even enlightenment. The key to modern life! I’m going to learn to be bored. To be okay with it. To sit for hours and hours in an airplane cross-legged and perfectly at peace being the embodiment of boredom. Totally fine staring out at the twinkling runway and taxiway lights that appear as bright, vivid, twinkling stars strewn over the ground admiring them endlessly.

(Closing Note: I was trying to make this more of an “update post” but was carried away with my mindset for the day. I wrote the post while bored and just went with it and it ended quite differently than how I originally intended it to end. So I guess this is the “update part” just tacked onto the end. I’m working a bunch of hours. I probably won’t be very active on here unless I knock some stuff out on the weekends and schedule them to post on the weekdays. I can write on my phone just fine, but I can’t edit or post. This also explains the “thanks guys!” post on Sunday. December probably won’t have any record blog views because of this yearly hell I live through; posting will surely suffer. I also might not be very active commenting on other people’s blogs. So if I disappear it isn’t because I forgot about you, it’s because I’m bored and I can’t help being bored and I have no escape from the boredom.)

Everything Sucks: An Update 2.0 (Or Something…)

If you’re a hardcore fan of this blog you might’ve realized that I’ve seemingly dropped off the face of the Earth the past half year or so. But since I don’t actually think I have any hardcore fans let me state that I’ve basically dropped off the face of the Earth in the past six months or so. This is due to a ton of things but it boils down to a basic lack of motivation. Keeping with the tone of this blog, this Sucks and I’m going to bitch about it.

You see, I’ve written a ton of shit about motivation and for me at least it does seem to be in short supply. Even if I intend to blog, if anything more important or taxing comes up I will immediately drop blogging (unintentionally) to focus on what is most stressful/important/whatever. It’s sort of a theory I live by but continually try to sidestep; like I believe the whole “finite motivation” idea is true but continually try to overextend myself into tons of different matters. It’s even more insulting considering that I’ve written a few blog posts about blogging, consistency, motivation, but still seem to drop the fucking ball on writing and posting blog posts. Like the dude preaching about motivation and consistency continually drops the ball on actually making consistent posts.

Currently I’m taking flight lessons, writing like two or three books (depending on what you consider “writing a book” means), trading stocks and options/dealing with a fucking terrible market, working peak season at a delivery company, being a father/husband, and trying to cope with depression/alcoholism. My life is a fucking hellish mess where I don’t seem to have any time to recoup, find myself, or to just relax and listen to music. There’s always something I feel I should be doing even if I don’t end up doing a damn thing.

Obviously given that mess it’s no surprise I haven’t fucking made a blog post in a few months…

What has changed recently was that I made the mistake of checking this blog a few weeks ago. Thinking that the blog had crashed and burned and that no one would give two shits about what was going on here I found myself pleasantly surprised: I was somehow netting about ten views a day even though I haven’t posted anything in a half year! This somehow bolstered my motivation in regards to my blogging and — I assume — bumped my blogging priorities up quite a bit.

So I suck at keeping a schedule and I guess I have reasons for that even though I’m a slacking piece of shit, but seeing how this blog has had consistent views even while I have been neglecting it gets my inspiration up. It makes me want to work on it. Maybe this blog isn’t something to let wither away and maybe I should keep working at it? I’m not looking for inspiration or justification or for anyone to spur me on to keep posting — because fuck that — I just wanted to make a(nother) post about how much of a bitch inspiration and motivation is and how priorities suck. But if you hang in there maybe you can still start over and that even if you have pissed away quite a bit of time you can still jump in and make progress. But what the fuck do I know? Everything Fucking Sucks.

Vacation Sucks: Life Without Work

I’m currently at work having just returned from a week-long vacation, and I must say it’s pretty shitty being back. Despite me having a job so simple that I can write a blog post at work, it’s still awful being back. It’s obvious to anyone that returning to work from vacation sucks, but in a strange way it’s nice to be back. I realize Work Sucks, but looking back and realizing Vacation Sucks more than work is pretty depressing. It makes no sense, but without fail when I return to work I think my Vacation Sucked and that vacation was pretty pointless.

The Second Job: A Halfway Vacation

First up on the “Vacations Sucks” post is the gripe that I work two jobs and only have a vacation with one of them. In case you didn’t realize my “vacation” is simply time off from work and not an actual “go somewhere and do something special” thing. This might not apply to some people, and if you’re one of those lucky people who only has a single job or who can get both jobs to allow you time off to do something, well congrats because this doesn’t apply to you! Working two part time jobs like I do leaves you with the typical situation where one gives me time off when the other doesn’t. This sort of “halfway vacation” sucks for all the obvious reasons. I’m not working as much, but still working enough to make life not enjoyable, and it probably makes work and vacation suck more because of the juxtaposition of the two. Working only one job isn’t really a vacation, it’s just normal life that doesn’t suck quite as much.

Motivation? Where U Go?

The prospect of having tons of free time while off of work (even one job) always seems promising to me. I feel that by having more leisure time I would be able to focus on a few of the goals I have. There’s this blog, and my derelict blog, and I also (try to) write short stories on Wattpad. I also have a few really stupid ideas for small businesses. Obviously, I have a bunch of crap going on in my head and time is a premium when it comes to making meaningful progress on anything. Working two jobs simply makes it hard to focus and get anything done and vacation should allow me to actually be productive.

Then I was on vacation and how many blog posts did I post? Zero. How many short stories did I write? Zero. Did I work on my business plans or revamp the blog’s Facebook page. Nope. I did basically nothing. What the hell happened?

You see, having a bunch of free time seems to have the counterintuitive effect of making me less motivated. I’m assuming I’m not unique and other also have this problem. Having more time allows me to escape the feelings of doom and desperation that working two jobs fills me with, and without that awful feeling staring me down daily and hourly, I have no drive to really be successful. When I’m working and I’m miserable and my schedule is busy there is no time to worry about motivation: if you want to write a blog post you fucking write one and post it because need to get on that shit if you want to do something with your life! But on vacation you’re like “Meh. There’s no rush. I have plenty of time!” Somehow having more free time gives you less motivation and drive making the vacation look ultra-depressing and pointless, especially in retrospect. You didn’t work, and you didn’t get any hobbies or goals accomplished. You basically wasted life without actually enjoying it.

Vacation is what Life Isn’t

Despite those two previous whine sessions, they aren’t really why Vacation Sucks. They’re facets of shittiness, contributing to vacation being awful while being offshoots of the primary reason: Vacations Sucks primarily because you have to go back to work. “Yeah, no shit.” you’re probably saying, but let me elaborate.

Vacations are what we all want to achieve out of life. Vacation is not working and having enough money and time to do the things you want to do. Some even call vacation by another name: retirement. We all want to save enough money so someday we don’t have to work and can have a “perpetual vacation.” If you’re really lucky you can retire earlier or might not have to work at all. This is a perpetual vacation called “being rich.” There’s this grand idea that if you accumulate enough money you don’t have to work at all, and this laziness to not want to work might be a large driver of the world’s greed. Retirement, being rich, living off the land, and vacation all serves a single urge: not working and doing something else you’d rather do! Chase your dreams! Do what you want to do! 

So vacation is a little taste of this for the lowly lower-class worker, especially if it happens to be a paid vacation. Here you have a week with no work and you still have money. You can do whatever the hell you want (or don’t want to do) with no obligations to a job. While you might not have a ton of money and aren’t actually rich you still get a temporary taste of not having to answer to anyone. This is life without a job, and it’s pretty refreshing.

Except the dream and experience has to eventually end of course. You always have to go back to work because you’re not rich and you’re not retired. You’ll probably have to work nearly the rest of your adult life with little to no breaks and you have to do it sustainably so you don’t burn out and just fall apart. Or get so discouraged at life you kill yourself or descend into alcoholism. Life is one big grind to make money to survive and to support your family, and compared with the wonderful fantasy that is vacation, it’s awful. Vacation gives you the perspective to what life would be like if you didn’t have to work. Going back to work from vacation just hammers the point home: this is your life, you hate it, you’re stuck here. How was vacation btw?!

Making it even worse, you might not even enjoy your vacation and this leads to some more troubling thoughts. If vacation is a microcosm of being rich and not working, I’d be a fucking miserable mess. I made no progress on my blogs and business plans and whatever other stupid shit I wanted to do. I didn’t travel anywhere and I didn’t do a bunch of housework. I don’t even think I mowed the yard a single time. In fact, I spent a bunch of money on fast food, drank about 50% of the time, and gained about 5 pounds. Apparently I’d be a fat, lost, unmotivated alcoholic mess if I didn’t work my jobs, so as much as work fucking sucks, it almost seems that vacation is shittier than work. It’s like I need to work to keep my ass in line, focused, and sober. Vacation makes me realize how much work does and doesn’t suck while work makes me realize how much vacation does and doesn’t suck.

In short you can’t win. Vacation, Work, and Everything Sucks.

Work Sucks: Detached Survival

Work Sucks. That’s right. I mean in case you weren’t aware of it. Work really sucks, but it sucks in such a way that is obvious but not-at-all-obvious when you think about it in depth. Work sucks — we all know that — but exactly why does it suck? If you’re like me, you might think that work primarily sucks because it’s something you have to do. Strangely, I’ve realized that if my job were voluntary, where I could show up and work whenever I need and wanted to and could take days off at will, I would probably still show up and work, but somehow I’d be much happier at going. This speak volumes towards the “I have to go to work” complaint as to why Work Sucks. But this doesn’t quite explain it all because even if you had a purely optional job, eventually you’d have to go (what with you being starving and homeless…) and then you’d be back at where we started at: work sucking because you have to go. But why is that? If your survival is dependent upon work you’d think you’d enjoy it a little more.

Work Sucks because it is required, because money is required, and shelter, food, water, and transportation are all required. Work is essentially for us to survive. But with a person’s survival on the line, you think people wouldn’t mind work too much. The alternative to not working is dying, so yeah, work isn’t too bad! Work is required so we can each survive, but it doesn’t really seem like that when you’re at work. To us, work seems very detached from the idea of survival where no one sees their jobs as important to their wellbeing.

People at work aren’t like “I’m doing fairly well, although I need to take some extra hours because I’m on the verge of starving to death! How is your day going Jerry?” At work, and in our greater society as a whole, money, food, shelter, and survival seem really distant, almost like an afterthought. Also realize the fact that you probably do stupid shit at work that seems so pointless and redundant to basic survival that it’s amazing to think that your own person survival really does depend on it. That’s crazy! You as a cashier must listen to people whine and bitch so you can survive. You as a taxi driver must drive people around so you can survive. And me, well I move Amazon boxes from an airplane into a semi-truck, so I can survive. It seems really dumb that my survival is dependent upon such a stupid thing.

I don’t think survival has always been this detached from everyday life either. Think back to how life was 200 years ago, as if you would be living on the family farm all pastoral style. You’d wake up when the sun comes up, and do a bunch of chores to take care of animals. But you have to do this so you can kill the animals and eat them because if you didn’t you would starve and die. You’d have to work in a field harvesting vegetable and canning them, because if you didn’t you’d starve and die. You might have to hunt for wild animals, or build and repair a fence to keep the cows in the pasture, so you don’t STARVE AND DIE. Before winter you’d have to have enough firewood on hand so you didn’t freeze to death during the coldest months of the year. My point here is that day-to-day life was almost directly attached to survival, and while you’d probably have to run to a store periodically for fabric, clothes, tools, and the rare food item (like salt), most of your life didn’t suffer from the detachment to survival that we deal with today. I bet people were happier and perhaps the Amish are onto something…

..Nah. Society is pretty cool with how comfy it’s made life. Instead of worrying about my next meal I can work a few hours, buy a box of doughnuts at the gas station, and sit on my ass at home wandering around a virtual world in Minecraft. It’s almost laughable how easy things are and you have to appreciate how nice it is when you think of life hundreds and thousands of years ago. We have time for leisure activities and most of us don’t deal with day to day survival like a gazelle in Africa has to deal with when drinking water. Babies don’t die from preventable diseases, and our drinking water is clean. It is nice not waking up day after day worrying about living or dying. But I don’t think this can happen freely without some sort of tradeoff, without some compromise happening within our human spirit. In our day-to-day lives, at work and at home, survival and existence are so far detached from anything we deal with that we forget that it’s there. It makes us go mindlessly to a job day after day without really thinking about survival at all. It seems really pointless and mind numbingly mundane. Jobs, while attached directly to survival just don’t seem important enough to care about. I work for my survival, but not really.

So we never face the daily connection between work and survival. Our jobs are pointless, mindless, and usually involve some chain of production or service that seems to have nothing to do at all with basic survival. You work to get money to live and survive on, but there seems to be so much extra crap going on that work and survival are only related in theory. That is why Work Sucks: your shitty job is directly required for your survival but since society is cushy enough your survival is detached from your job and you never relate the two together. It makes work seem pointless and arbitrary compared with something much more important: survival and living your life.

Coworkers Suck: the Ignorant Know-it-All

Hopefully as soon as you read the title you conjured up a mental image of a coworker whom is the perfect candidate for the Ignorant Know-It-All. And hopefully as you read this you are nodding your head constantly in agreement as I whine about this certain type of person. We all know them and we all loathe them: the person at work who is constantly telling people how to do their job, and even though they are in the same job position as you are, they seem to act like they’re part of middle management and know everything. Making matters worse, they don’t actually seem to have any clue as to what needs to happen at work even though they act like they do. I recently started a new job and it took me a total of one week to run into TWO of these people. TWO! Lucky me! I’m sure there are a few more, but whatever, they must be really low-key about being jackasses. These workers Suck, and they Suck for some very simple reasons: no one likes to be ordered around and if you are ordered around, you’d hope you wouldn’t be ordered around to do some very stupid things. The Ignorant Know-It-All Sucks.

The part of this person being an ignorant know-it-all is very important. Similar worker archetypes that lack the ignorant aspect are the know it all and the asskisser/brownoser. These people are bad enough with their constant ass-kissing of management and telling everyone what to do. But truth be told, I’m sort of a know it all, and I can understand why people end up being that way at work. When you work around people who are mostly dipshits — your co-workers and the general public — you start to get frustrated with how people work begin to correct and overcorrect your fellow dipshit workers. Yeah you probably come across as an ass, but if you keep it low-key enough, maybe people won’t hate you as much? I figure you might be an insufferable piece of shit, but you still have good intentions of helping your coworkers find the best way to do a job. This is what the ignorant know-it-all starts with, but they take it to a whole new level of insufferability by not knowing what they hell they’re talking about.

The ignorant know-it-all is just like the standard run-of-the-mill know-it-all in that they have to correct everyone on every method that occurs in the workplace, but instead of them being a know-it-all and being correct in their recommendations, they fail miserably by suggesting and ordering really dumbass things that undermine the work process. Making matters worse, they think they’re a wizard, brainiac genius, future CEO, who are God’s gift to the workplace so they’re not even aware of how terrible their suggestions are. (For further reading, look up the dunning-kruger effect.) Everyone hates them and doesn’t want to work with them, but they don’t get it. And I don’t know how you’re supposed to tell them in a polite way to fuck off, so you just end up silently dealing with these overbearing assholes.

What bothers me most about these people is their seeming inability to put together any sort of complex process in their minds. When the ignorant know-it-all suggests something, it might sound good on the surface, but upon even slightly thinking about the issue, their suggestion will obviously undermine the work process one, two, or more steps away. What might solve the primary issue at hand will ruin the work process further down the line. For example, workers are limited in the workplace and moving workers from one line of work always will take workers away from another line of work. Job one might be dependent upon job two. I unload cargo aircraft containers that hold a bunch of packages and we load them into large cardboard boxes. People have to make the boxes (job one) for us to load the packages into (job two). In this example, the ignorant asshole will suggest, upon seeing that we’re not unloading the containers fast enough, might order (even though he isn’t a supervisor) some of the box making dudes to help unload containers. Well, it doesn’t take a genius to realize if you cripple the box making process, eventually we won’t have boxes to unload the packages into! If you’re smart you might realize that there might be enough boxes to finish the job — and you might be right — but the ignorant asshole doesn’t care about that and will move people even if it will cause all work to come to a screeching halt because of not being able to put actions and consequences together.

It never even has to be as complex as moving workers either. It might be telling coworkers to use a less efficient process even though they think it’s better, or by telling people how to do a job differently even if it doesn’t have any negative effect. Some people just have their own way of doing a job that works fine, but they will still insist that you do it their way. It might be them having a sense of urgency when there really isn’t any reason to hurry. It entails all sorts of unnecessary crap these people do just to seem smart, important, superior, or to appear to be a “good worker” to management. They might take care of less important matters first (like sweeping) while ignoring more important stuff (like helping a customer). These people Suck for very obvious reasons: they’re know-it-alls but they are ignorant about their ignorance. They go around and tell people what to do, how to do it, or when to do something when it’s one of the dumbest suggestions you could think of and have no idea about how stupid they are being. You can’t tell them to fuck off because then you’d lose your job. They probably won’t get fired because they’re such a “go-getter” sort of person: even if they’re dumb and annoying they’re a good worker and are reliable. Every workplace has these wonderful people, and this is probably a large part of why people hate going into work even if we don’t recognize it. We have to deal with the damn ignorant know-it-all and it Sucks.