I was on the subway this morning and there were two girls behind me who were practicing a presentation. Their thesis was about ‘white collar sweat shops’ and how bad the office environment was. Well that was the succinct version. It was more something like ‘the socio-economic implication of 80’s and 90’s corporations on the work environment, stemming from its roots in the Roman Empire’. I did NOT stick that Roman Empire thing in there to be funny it was actually worked in somehow. They were going over how imprisoned and suffering the ‘worker bees’ were, rather loudly, and even went so far as to use their surroundings as an example.
“Like, look at the subway, people are jammed in to race to their desks where they will be chained all day, answering the phone and emails, only grabbing a quick bite at lunch. Just like in a sweatshop.”
Sage head nod “Totally.”
I’m sure little Timmy in Singapore will be glad to know he can take a moment to check his email when his fingers start to bleed or go grab a Booster Juice, quick mind you, when he starts blacking out from hunger.
Honestly. If you’re going to compare something to a sweatshop you’ll have to use the sweatshop conditions for comparison, not constant email checking, arduous though it may be.
Now I’ll take a moment here to say I don’t necessarily disagree with the comparison, if it were done properly, but I did feel my feathers ruffle when these kids were bashing the work I had chosen.ended up in. Someone who could very well have never actually had a job ( I don’t remember my student loan allotment leaving room for Gucci purses), was very confidently condemning the entire train for conforming to...well, life I suppose. If someone who worked in an office for even a year brought up the topic I would probably listen with an open mind and interested ear.
Then I remembered how in first year university you read a line in a textbook and your mind is blown open and you become very concerned for the rest of humankind who doesn’t ‘get it’. No one seems as smart as you do in that moment. Ah, sigh. Good times.
In conclusion, by the time my stop rolled around I was chuckling to myself and quite looking forward to getting to my ‘cage’ and recording the whole thing for prosperity.
Well done ladies. Even though I felt like turning around and saying ‘Hey! It’s donut day today, I bet you don’t get a free donut this morning! So there.’ I have to say - Good luck on your presentation.