photo © 2008 Elizabeth M | more info (via: Wylio)
I got my first ‘real’ job at 15, the summer before my junior/senior year of high school. I proudly commuted on the train into New York City to work 9-5 as a ‘floater’ secretary at the company my mom worked at – Philip Morris. Yes, the tobacco giant.
As an interesting aside, at that time the company provided each employee with a free carton of cigarettes a week! Yep, even their 15-year-old employees carried home their carton each Friday. Talk about corporate security. Make sure your thousands of employees are addicted and you’re golden. But that’s all another story…
This story is about Work. With a capital “W” – because it is Almighty in our society. Valued beyond all else, (except money of course, but in most cases it is our work that gets us more of it) work hounds and haunts us all.
A recent article in Harper‘s, spoke much more eloquently than I can about this topic – why we’re so obsessed with work, its relationship to our capitalist values, and the much under-rated value of idleness. I would link to the article, but it’s only available online to subscribers.
And I’ve actually been ruminating on this one for quite a while. For almost the entire duration of my travels through Indonesia and Thailand, I battled a pervasive feeling of guilt to be spending so many weeks Not Working. While I gallivanted around Southeast Asia, truly serious people Continue reading