Tuesdays With Abhorrent Fiends vol. 31

Good news for me on the internet front. Maturity levels higher than previously suspected! Seems I've merely embarrassed myself, which is much nicer than having to search out a new forum. Not the nicest of possible things to be sure. However, it relates to what I want to talk about here.

Has to do with distribution of energy. Priorities, excuses--but really, identity.

Part of the reason one has a peer group is to judge oneself against them. One seeks approval, ultimately; to be judged and not found wanting, to have one's judgments accepted and validated by the group. To form relationships within which the growth of one's identity can take place. This is a purpose of any social group regardless of the stated reason for which it is formed.

In religious or religion-based groups, however, this purpose is primary. In my opinion one chooses a religion based on the character traits that are most likely to be fostered by the social groups formed within it. In other words, you choose the religion whose adherents (as observed) you most desire to resemble.

You can say the same thing about what books you read, what music you listen to. What job you have. The popular phrase is to call each of these personal choices an expression of one's identity. I will say rather these choices all make an impression on the identity. Or as Lois Bujold has put it, "You are what you do. Choose again, and change." You choose the religious group on the one hand, and the workplace on the other, most suited to the sort of person you are trying to become. Rather than the one most comfortable for what you already are.

Which is really a serious question. Quo vadimus is the question, the motto of that entrepreneur fellow from the last few episodes of Sports Nite. Where are we going? Are my interests and intentions best served by going out into the suburbs to work as the backup person to a securities broker, or by staying in the city as the office manager to a restaurant?

I suppose it's a bit late in the action to reconsider whether I actually want to change jobs or not. But better late and hastily done than incomplete and unusable, which was my motto on homework all through college. My objections to this stupid restaurant and the infuriating way it is run are not out of consideration and still stand. My objections to newplace are yet to be seen, apart from the issue of transportation which everyone agrees is a major problem. Everyone except Mom, who sees a lovely solution in my coming to live with her.

Had my phone interview yesterday evening with the broker whom I would be supporting. Seems like a nice and reasonable fellow and I'm sure I wouldn't mind working for him, keeping his clients happy and well-informed and his paperwork all in order. From what he and others at that office have told me, it can be a high-stress job, no two days the same, issues and concerns rising and falling with the market and other, less traceable factors. There would be the usual office politics and espirit de corps, socializing, occasionally going to seminars as a group, that sort of thing.

But it would not infuriate me. It would not make me yell and grind my teeth and mutter that Dr. Kills Everyone was going to have her horrible vengeance, just you wait and see. It would not make me write angry poems about food or how I hate being a manager, because I would not be a manager. It would not, in short, challenge me and force me to grow the way this job has done.

Really what happened on the forum made this occur to me. I don't pick things that are easy. I don't go and join social groups where I already fit in. Out of the whole wide internet full of dumb I picked this ridiculous forum. Where practically the first thing that happened was I accidentally started a fight with a mod I respect and then made an ass of myself because I'm not used to being able to stab people in the front. And successfully navigating a trial by fire does forge a bond. Whether you pass with flying colors or by the skin of your teeth.

This stupid restaurant has definitely made a mark on me, as much as me on it. I consider, though, what sort of a mark has it made. Yes, it does eat my brain--but less so now than before. I have in spite of myself gotten better at giving orders, both to bosses and people lower on the command chain than me, better at every stupid damnable little process that keeps a place like this running, better at balancing them all.

Yes, I do work a lot of stupid hours--but my commute is a breezy 30 minutes instead of a hellish 2 and a half hours. Still no benefits, which is ass. But also no requirement that I get my City of Chicago parking tickets paid off and my license reinstated and get myself a car before winter comes. And no Mom standing over my shoulder reminding me how she got me the job and couldn't she just give me a ride now and then. (And by the way worship Jesus and obey her.)

So. Am I still considering taking newjob? Certainly. Am I going to wait and see what kind of offer they give me? Yes, yes of course. Am I more likely now to simply use that offer as leverage in a cold-blooded attempt to get a raise than actually leave? Absofuckinglutely.

I think after work today I'm'a go sit by the tree and think on it some more.