He knew what the answer was going to be when my father asked about my new job because it was the same as it’s been for the past 10 years. I’ve never been able to fight my innate repulsion for the work force. Incessant small talk with clients and comrades all day drains the life out of me. Waking up before the sunrise feels unnatural. Having to feed into hierarchal positions that allow people to gain dominance over their betters is ego crushing. Witnessing someone power trip because of some nonsensical authoritative title is horrifying. Compartmentalizing myself so that the person I am at work is so far from my actual self just kills my spirit. And participating in this idea of capitalism and consumerism goes against everything I believe in.
So when my father, a man, who spent his entire life coming up with hustles to help him avoid ever subjecting himself to this type of environment started trying to convince me that I should somehow be thankful, I was a bit offended. ‘BE THANKFUL FOR WHAT?!’ It had been statements like his in response to my expressed disdain that made me spend so many years wondering what was wrong with ME. Why couldn’t I just grin and bear this like everyone else? Why did I want to reject such a necessary part of life? Was I just being lazy? But this wasn’t an aversion to work. Because if I had it my way, I’d be spending my days painting, maintaining my own home, growing my own food, and offering my skills and talents to my community. All of which, would entail a lot more effort than the mind-numbing way I spend 10 hours of my day now. This was an inability to conform.
Because when people say these things, like ‘Alexis, this is just part of being an adult‘, ‘it’s just what you have to do‘, what their inadvertently suggesting, (but refuse to openly admit)… is that you simply do not have a choice. And therein lies my main problem. This guise of freedom that doesn’t even fucking exist because freedom would mean free of coercion. But what if I don’t want to spend my life selling my labor to get by? What are my other options? Homelessness (which is essentially illegal), jail, a nuthouse? Having to choose between starving to death or selling your self isn’t exactly a decision. We are being forced into this.
Because the truth is, our country relies on the working class to thrive. And the only way to get us all to volunteer ourselves was to make the incentive basic survival. Otherwise, who would subject themselves to this? Having to be around people you would normally never choose to be around. Ass kissing. Obeying people that are not as intelligent than you. No one!
Will I continue to participate in it until I find a way out of indentured servitude? Much to my own dismay. Because like I said, there really aren’t any other choices. I have to. But will I continue to feel ashamed for my insubordination and inclination to reject it? No. And having to participate in it doesn’t mean I can’t recognize it for what it really is – modern day slavery. Sonny was right, the working man IS a sucker.