Most people who are fairly academic and who steer themselves towards a White Collar Office Job will have it easier. I think this is unfair. But I also don’t give a rat’s rear-end. I got my White Privelege Visa the old-fashoned way. I studied my ass off. If you want it easy like me, join me in solving for the oscillation of a circular membrane using Legendre Polynomials.* At least I had it easy until I got the wife, the mortgage, the kids and then had to work for The Evil Sex-Starved Cobra Boss for a five year stretch.
The house, the kids, and usually even the lovely wife were delightful additions to my previously minimal and basic existence. The downside of all this is that it tied me down. Then the Sex-Starved Cobra got assigned to be my supervisor. I couldn’t just pop the rip-cord and ditch the job and apartment. I was there and I didn’t have an escape hatch. The weaselly little SOB had me where he wanted me, and used the position to humiliate me in every endeavor.
The problem was this. He had fallen very badly from grace in his previous office and was given the position over myself as a somewhat soft crash-landing. His initial problem arose from the fact that he fvcked under the flag-pole.** He then promoted his loathsome little hoochie-hole far beyond her level of competence, spent far beyond his financial means, fathered two children, and then had his best buddy explain…
You see, she was porking two other guys on the side and was in an existential dilemma deciding which of her cabana boys she intended to dump him for when she monkey-branched like the thot that she truly was. He then, regrettably remodeled himself as a man after the chisel-wielding (((divorce attorney))) from Hell. So what did his ex do? Sent him to work to make all her alimony payments. That, along with the personal bankruptcy filing and the forced sale of his home and the hostile custody arrangement involving his two kids had him looking for someone’s ass to rip into like a grizzly bear. And that turned him into the shining piece of humanity that I then spent the next five years working for/job hunting under.
Getting physically cucked makes a man ultimately insecure to the core. You can no longer master yourself and therefore can’t lead others without malice in your heart. It didn’t help that I’ve managed to remain a workout fanatic pretty far into my middle ages. I never tried to wield Golic’s Hammer on his ass, but it was unspoken every time I stepped into his office. He, meanwhile was getting his stomach stapled because he had been digging his grave with the fork, knife and spoon. He hated watching a man two years older than him walk into his office with a a set of clothes that properly fit.
I remember one time this woman I was buddies with anyway innocently flirted with me while he and I were meeting with her. He was completely vile and hostile to me for the next three days. He threatened not to sign a leave slip so I could go to the eye doctor. I asked him how it would look if I had to go up the chain of command just to get my frikking glasses checked. Not professional on my part, even if I say so myself, but I was ready to choke the bastard.
Then he started stocking the office with his old cronies from his days of being a bigshot. At that point, none of the rest of us got to know what was going on and had to start reporting to his detestable flunkies. They’d hang out in his office and shoot the shit all day and if you came in they looked at you like you didn’t belong in the frat house. Every now and then, these sleazy catamites would stroll around and look at what was on our computer screens or ask us how our projects were coming. I had an ongoing joke with Brad, the dude who sat in the cube next door.
Brad: “Are you being paranoid again?”
Me: “Yep, but am I paranoid enough?”
Brad: “Probably not.”
And that’s how it is when your office has its own Stazi. That’s how it is when they ask you to construct a $40 billion cost estimate and then defend all of its assumptions and mathematics while not trusting you enough to sign your medical leave so that you can get your frikking glasses checked. The experience made me less of a decent person to others around me. I was usually mad as hell. I drank way to much to make that bastard die out of my brain when he wasn’t around. The only positive externality occurred when I ran or attacked the gym. Oh yes, I set PRs.
And he knew good and well that I was trying like heck to get away from him. He sabotaged me on recommendations. He was very good at wording things that sounded good on the surface but were absolute career poison pills to have on any sort of an eval.
“Is generally personally responsible and usually maintains a professional bearing and appearance.”
“Can be brilliantly effective and mostly cares intensely about his work.”
I had to challenge his evaluations and start asking him, “When was I not motivated? In what ways have my appearance and bearing appeared unprofessional?” He would back down and reword it in a less poisonous manner when I called him on his passive-aggressive bullcrap. When you work for a human ball of pissed-off insecurity, you have to constantly stand guard against his efforts to tear you down and degrade you for the sake of his own personal validation.
He eventually married another woman. Older than him and adorned with “tramp-stamp” tattoos. He couldn’t even go to his church to marry her. He had her knocked-up with twins less than four months after the broom-jumping. From what I gleaned, they were already arguing about two months after the bundles of joy were born. The positive aspect of that is that he backed off of people and stopped screwing me on job recommendations. An old friend from a prior project upped me in big way and got me out of there.
So we now reach the part of this whole 5-Year Jerry Springer episode where the perv ringmaster with the microphone asks, “What can we all learn from this?” Here’s what we can take away.
1) People like The Evil Sex-Starved Cobra Boss From Gehenna are less stable that decent, ordinary humans. They do great damage, but they burn against the friction of reality like a meteor flying through the sky. The will probably chill out or burn out before you do. You can bite your tongue and ride them out.
2) You have to protect yourself at all times. The key question Brad asked me in his joking, but not just kidding sort of way was “Are you being paranoid again?” What that meant in plain English was “Is your guard up?” You have to read every line of every paper, document or email a person composes involving you. They are evil. They will backstab you and sabotage you. They will hate you for being there and resent you for being sane and therefore trying to leave.***
3) Avoid ever reminding that sort of person of what they truly are? Do not show them up and stay quietly humble. Avoid contact with them and anyone stupid, or evil enough to spend a lot of time with this individual. Nobody honest or likeable will actively seek to spend time around this man socially. Consider it a litmus test. If they act like they admire the Cobra Boss, you can not trust them any further than you could projectile-crap them.
4) Re-connect with professional friends in your line of work. If you try to job hunt, this man will assassinate you with passive-aggressive faint praise. You need someone’s word to countermand whatever this guy says about you over the phone to a perspective employer. Also, find ways to sharpen your skills through work projects. This SOB will not let you attend any really useful professional training. You have to train yourself.
5) Separate a heck of a lot of yourself from your work life. I got better at brewing beer. I taught a group young kids about the Bible and helped coach the heck out of two Little League Baseball Teams that my boy played for. I blogged more than rational human beings should be permitted to blog. These things gave me an outlet to contribute to the world. A man at my age and phase of life I had to go outside myself and believe I could give something back. It sure wasn’t happening down on the cube farm.
6) Remember God is more important than bullshit at work. Your prayers won’t always be answered. God will sometimes say “No” until he and you are ready for what comes next.
7) Think carefully before you take that Kierkegaardian Leap and assume the burdens of fatherhood, matrimony, home ownership and a career path. These things give you a lot and can be very fulfilling. They can also tie you down and leave you vulnerable. Just like I was vulnerable. Do better than I did at sorting out your life in a way so that you can pick up stakes and leave when you get trapped like I did. This is one area where MGTOWs might even have a point.
* – Come and Git Some! (You’ll have mathematical understanding of why Keith Moon could play the hell out of drum set.)
** – Boned a woman who worked for him. Life lesson: Keep income and pooney-tang in seperate categories.
*** – If that sounded totally jacked up, that just means you read the sentence correctly. Bravo on the reading comprehension.