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This Is Just Accurate Enough To Be Scary

Wednesday, June 16, 2010
I'm not particularly fond of my job. A large portion of it is inherently tedious, and my several of my supervisors are extremely aggravating. I've thought about quitting, except that a) in the present job market it would be very hard to find a new job, b) I'm very risk adverse, c) one of these days BH will get a new position somewhere and then this will all be over, and d) I probably wouldn't like another job any better (think Office Space). In the meantime I'm just trying to get by, focusing on the (few) things about it that I do enjoy and refusing to invest any more of myself in the work than I absolutely must.

However, when I read this (via Edge of the American West) I felt a disturbing shock of recognition. It made me think of not just this job, but my last job too, and before that my time in academia. I don't think it's a close reflection of my professional life in every respect, but it certainly has enough similarities to be disturbing.

And the saddest thing is I suspect that this experience of the world is utterly commonplace. Office Space is still very much with us.....

Joanna: So, where do you work, Peter?
Peter Gibbons: Initech.
Joanna: In... yeah, what do you do there?
Peter Gibbons: I sit in a cubicle and I update bank software for the 2000 switch.
Joanna: What's that?
Peter Gibbons: Well see, they wrote all this bank software, and, uh, to save space, they used two digits for the date instead of four. So, like, 98 instead of 1998? Uh, so I go through these thousands of lines of code and, uh... it doesn't really matter. I uh, I don't like my job, and, uh, I don't think I'm gonna go anymore.
Joanna: You're just not gonna go?
Peter Gibbons: Yeah.
Joanna: Won't you get fired?
Peter Gibbons: I don't know, but I really don't like it, and, uh, I'm not gonna go.
Joanna: So you're gonna quit?
Peter Gibbons: Nuh-uh. Not really. Uh... I'm just gonna stop going.
Joanna: When did you decide all that?
Peter Gibbons: About an hour ago.
Joanna: Oh, really? About an hour ago... so you're gonna get another job?
Peter Gibbons: I don't think I'd like another job.
Joanna: Well, what are you going to do about money and bills and...
Peter Gibbons: You know, I've never really liked paying bills. I don't think I'm gonna do that, either.
Joanna: Well, so what do you wanna do?
Peter Gibbons: I wanna take you out to dinner, and then I wanna go back to my apartment and watch 'Kung Fu'. Do you ever watch 'Kung Fu'?
Joanna: I love 'Kung Fu'.
Peter Gibbons: Channel 39.
Joanna: Totally.
Peter Gibbons: You should come over and watch 'Kung Fu' tonight.
Joanna: Ok.
[Peter nods]
Joanna: Ok. Can we order lunch first?
[Peter nods again]
Joanna: Ok.

-From IMDB
Posted by Arbitrista @ 9:54 AM
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