the noble masochism: dispatch from the bread line, day five


One thing I’ve discovered very quickly here in the hunt for a new job is just how potentially soul-crushing it is to keep looking:

Day one: Wow! There are a lot of opportunities out there!

Day two: Huh, there are quite a few more. Still lots of reasons to be optimistic!

Day three: OK, not so much change, but that’s fine.

Day four: Seriously? That’s it?

Day five: /checks facebook instead of [preferred career search website].com, plays Candy Crush until 2:30

It’s the right thing to do, but the daily job search is begging for heartache. And, as someone with educational experience in the humanities, it’s particularly frustrating in that many of these positions would be perfectly suitable for me or anyone with a background in critical thought, but the listed requirements and preferences ask for a ridiculous amount of experience–anyone with 1-3 years in human resources experience already has a job!–or want someone with a degree in a particular field–just about every person I know with a degree either in business administration or organizational leadership needed those degrees because they just weren’t very good at leading or administrating in the first place. It’s the old Margaret Thatcher adage: “Power is like being a lady: if you have to tell someone you are, you aren’t.”

Be that as it may, it starts to hurt a little when the job hunt starts to take a little longer. Weekends and holidays don’t help, either. I was dismissed on Thursday, hit the ground running, only to run into the weekend and the last work week before Christmas. In this respect, it seems The Man pushed me into my own sword, but the mercy killing wasn’t particularly merciful. Then again, neither would have been the prospect of hanging around here through Christmas only to be given the file 13 after the new year.

It is right and proper to be diligent in the pursuit of a new job, but I understand now all too well the plight of the thousands of people who have helped lower the unemployment rate by dropping out of the workforce altogether during and after the recession. After a while, a person’s soul can’t bear repeated punishment, especially when it is with the intent of getting back on one’s feet and supporting a family.

***

Dispatches from the Bread Line are week-daily posts until I’m employed again.

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