Archive for money

Just a Job

Posted in Poetry with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 1, 2009 by 1writegirl

Cleaning houses
Not what I saw
Myself doing

In college…
Ten years ago…
Six months ago

But the need for
Money
Is ever-present
And sometimes
You can’t be picky

It was a mobile home
2 bedroom 2 bath
Shag carpet
Greasy stove
Stained floor
Brown toilets

It had clearly
NEVER
Been cleaned

I toiled away for hours
Till everything
Sparkled and shone

No cobwebs
No dust
No grime
No spots
Splatter or
Splooge

Every muscle hurt
Every bone ached
My finger tips
Were blistered
My knees bruised
A knuckle bleeding
Mindlessly cut as I labored

Yet I still had
The front porch to do
Christ! Where the seven
Cats lived…

I’ll come back tomorrow
I whispered
And thought
If I’m still alive

I’ll finish the job
Bright and early
I didn’t realize
How long it would take

The next morning
I was there at eight
Finished up in
Two hours and ten

Alice paid me in full
Plus twenty-five tip
You did such a good job
She smiled

Pressing the money into
My hand
She said
And you came back!

As if I would leave it
Undone

I loaded my supplies
Into my car
Then headed to
Another
Smaller job

Helping Lola
Clean out her garage
And put together a bed

As I prepared to leave
She turned to me
Have you got a card?
She asked

I’ve got lots of friends
Like myself
Who could use
A hard worker
Like you

I thanked her and told her
I’d get some made
Then drove home
Thinking
If I did this often
My hands would toughen up
My muscles wouldn’t hurt
I’d be in fit shape
And my bank account…

A fast calculation said
6 houses a month
Would pay my rent
And then some

In the end, of course
Sprawled prostrate
On my bed
It felt the same
As any job
I might do
Or have already done

They all leave me
Moaning
Cursing
Pulling my hair
Telling myself

I’m too old for this
I’m not cut out for this
What’s the point of this
Oh god, why this?

It’s how I feel about all
Work for pay
And I’ve tried
My fair share
To be sure

It’s just a job
If it isn’t
Writing

Fuck, man
I’ve gotta
Sell that book…

Rambling Revelations I

Posted in Prose with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 4, 2009 by 1writegirl

The office manager in the urologist’s office where I work doesn’t like me. I haven’t yet been able to ascertain whether it’s personal or not. I suspect she wouldn’t like anyone who is currently doing the work she formerly did before she informed the doctor she needed help with her workload. I suspect she’s of the opinion, “Nobody does it better.” Or as well. Or if things continue on as they are, at all. Does that make sense? Not to me, either. But I’m waiting for her to corner me behind the water cooler and say something along the lines of, “I’m sorry, but you just aren’t working out here. It’s not a good fit. The doctor would have spoken to you personally but he’s extremely busy, well, doctoring, so he asked me to let you know. Go ahead and leave right now…”

Sensing the inevitable, I actually tried to quit last week, in an effort to save everyone the unsavory consequences of being stuck with an employee who “isn’t a good fit.” I came into the office, announced to OM that clearly I just couldn’t seem to get the hang of things, so much for that extensive college education, and why didn’t we all just cut our losses right now and I’d be on my merry way. After all, 72 other applicants applied for this job, surely one of them is still willing and available. She said she’d been too hard on me, would I please forgive her, and doctor would like to see me. I marched into his office where I presented the same speech, then added for good measure a bit about how I’d gotten spoiled from living off my savings after selling my house a few years ago, which allowed me to simply write and not have to worry about mundane and annoying little distractions like making a living. I told him, in a burst of bare naked honesty, that I realized after working in his office for two weeks, “how much I really detest office work.” He seemed surprised to hear this. “It’s not rocket science,” he told me. “Precisely,” I said. I waited for my dismissal. Instead, he announced he’d chastised OM for what he referred to as picking on me, and asked me if I’d give them another chance.

So here I am, filing charts and sending faxes and making appointments and dodging phone calls having to do with patients wanting tomorrow’s laboratory results today and nursing home facilities wanting to speak to doctor about the prescription for Mrs. Smith’s increasingly bothersome incontinence, and thinking what a relief it would be if OM really did fire me. Which is crazy stupid, because I need the money, and this is the only job, albeit part-time, I’ve got at present. Yet the fact is, I hold onto this position for that reason alone, and have to drag my sorry ass in to work it filled with compunction and reluctance every time. The fact is, I detest living in a world where your worth is based on what you do to acquire money, and acquiring money is the primary motivating force for your existence once you reach the age of “independence.” This world is so wrapped up in the exchange of performing some duty for receipt of an intangible which we endow with power and sustenance that those who reject the logic and benefit of such a system are shunned outright as slackers, bums, worthless leaches and downright losers. Creativity for its own sake is given no value whatsoever, and there is no such thing as the inherent worth of a human being. You are tolerated at best, and made to feel ashamed and inferior for your lack of “contribution to society” if you don’t throw yourself wholeheartedly into the pursuit of work for remuneration. That’s just how it is and is likely to continue for the foreseeable future.

Still, I think I’ll secretly continue to fantasize about OM giving me a pink slip. Somehow the idea that it’s right around the corner makes it just a tad easier to bear when she sighs deeply and takes a chart from my hands, muttering under her breath, “I’ll just do it myself, that way I know it’ll be done right. Go and make 100 copies of that form, will you?”

And if I don’t ever get the hang of it? So much the better. As Bindo says, doing stuff is overrated. I mean really, what I long to do, what my heart cries out for – shit, gotta run. OM is coming and I still haven’t collected those urine samples…

Fortunes

Posted in Prose with tags , , , , , , on April 13, 2009 by 1writegirl

While in the process of reducing rubbish, I cleaned off the refrigerator the other day. I came across a collection of fortunes from cookies obtained at Chinese restaurants over a certain period of time. I collect these fortunes for what I’ll call their literary value, which probably doesn’t make a lot of sense but we’ll leave it at that. Anyway, I noticed that a disproportionately high number of these fortunes had to do with inheriting money; large sums of money, I might add, from “unexpected” or “surprising” sources.

Hmmm… This got me thinking about the possibility I might have a rich aunt somewhere that I’ve never met, who knows about me even though I don’t know about her. I found myself fantasizing that she’d die and a boatload of money would come my way. Of course that made me feel like a cold-hearted bitch, so I amended my fantasy to her being very old and sick and wanting to die, and THEN dying and leaving me a boatload of money. No, not there yet. How about if she were very, very old, like 150 years old, and healthy as a horse, with all her faculties intact, and still enjoying life, and, and… and then, of course, I would want to know this woman, and hear her stories, and I would grow to love her, and wouldn’t want her to die. Ever.

So there you have it. It doesn’t pay to fantasize. It might, however, pay to eat Chinese food. After all, a boatload of fortunes telling you you’re going to inherit a boatload of money has got to be worth something…don’t you think?