I Sit In a Pod

12Nov07

Pods

I sit in a pod. This is my essential existence, which is to say that if one were to compile a catalogue of photographs taken on the hour, every hour, of me doing whatever it is I’m doing at that juncture (au natural – or as close as one can get to it these days) and proceeded to fashion a crude flip-book from the resulting images, the effect would be that of a stationary subject/object, seated, face illuminated by the other-worldly glow of a computer screen with the odd blurred figure rushing past in the background every ten photos or so to serve as a reminder of the highly managed climate-controlled pseudolife taking place on the perimeter.

Of course, I haven’t actually tried this. Nor have I asked anyone if they would consider taking it on as a sort of personal project, a document of: a) the times, b) my generation, or c) the ever-expanding employment segment foisted on people my age as the only sweat-free and thus, respectable, post-graduate commercial undertaking – one depending on and back-feeding the crippling depression and sloth which drains the ambition to actually do anything other than ponder the vast possibility of some alternative fantasy land: office “work”.

Neither of my grandfathers sat in a pod. They hauled pulp and gravel in trucks whose oil and grease worked its way into the folds of their skin, marking their flesh like arteries on a road map. They built sawmills, houses and communities with the same hands that furrowed the soil. Providing sustenance and guidance without ever once stooping to the so-called man. Rising early, going to bed the same. A life of labour understood beyond mere commodity; drinking clean water from their own wells, and sweating it out in rivulets from under rolled-up shirtsleeves, beading on their brows and the backs of their necks, moistening calloused hands.

Ambition was more than mere ideological rhetoric before the invention of convenience, when “factory farm” seemed a contradiction of terms – long before Ray Kroc got his greasy paws on a milkshake machine. Farmers were more than a cuddly novelty for rock-stars and politicians to rub elbows with when convenient, to remind their consumers and constituents of their marketable working-class roots. The “ambitious” Maritimers of my generation have forsaken the land of their forebears.

The land and those who worked it were the backbone of a rural population, a former majority that has since thinned away to nothing but a tree-laden suburbia, its exposed ribs barely weathering the flurry of our culture’s left-right combinations of greed and complacency. Bruised and bloodied against the ropes, eyes swollen purple-skinned and gaunt, locked in a purgatorial standing eight count.

Sweat is dirty, sweat is evil and we have myriad products designed to stamp it out or cover it up. No one can make a living wage through sweat-inducing jobs anymore since they’ve mostly been replaced by machines, with the notable exceptions being that of prostitute and professional athlete.

So I sit in a pod. And maybe I should suck it up.

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5 Responses to “I Sit In a Pod”

  1. I sit in a pod too.

    I hate it.

    I went to Art School, and all i could find is this piece of crap job?

    It’s sad.

    I’m sad.

  2. Don’t despair, don’t give in. Do what your heart says to do and the money will follow. I sit in a pod too but I’m trying to build a business that creates social change. It’s a necessary evil of pod-sitting– I did it six years but make it work for you.

  3. I also sit in a pod at work…… but through the wonders of VPN tunnels and high speed broadband I can now sit at home and…. well, wait until management apot the diference between my UK salary and a Bangalore salary.

    bugger….

  4. Oh boy. Thanks for reminding me of my miserable existence with this post! LOLOLOLOL!

    It just makes me think of how brilliant “Office Space” truly was. A true film reflecting how so many of us feel trapped in these office jobs.

  5. WAT: Where the hell are those TPS reports!


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