turn around a point or axis or on a swivel. If you work in an office, and your work involves computers, then most likely you sit on a swivel chair. Swinging around, earphones plugged into your ears, watching funny videos* on YouTube and stifling laughs.

Listening to music on earphones that will probably damage your hearing by fifty, smelling like Axe and chewing gum as you prepare reports, scrutinize accounts, prepare defences, send introductory e-mails, respond to e-mails where your senior cc’d your boss (for no reason other than to be a total douchebag and now you have to use words like unfortunately, punctuality and profusely). Lucky enough to be on that chair, working. Sitting on a swivelchair, making money for the chairman, working.

When I was younger, I couldn’t wait to move out. Have my own space, play loud music, cook and wash dishes when I want, watch whatever I want, bring girls over, be my own boss. Then I moved out, and it wasn’t what I expected. Bills every month, takeout is mad expensive, unwashed dishes stink and getting girls to come over gets old after a while.

That swivel chair turns, and sometimes when you aren’t eyeing your office crush, you think about the boss. How good they have it, in their gleaming black SUV, with its inside that smells even better than their Italian fragrances, their bleached teeth, their last-minute-price Koroga tickets, their swanky residence that doesn’t experience water rationing and blackouts, their expensive shoes, does he have any legitimate worries?

With millions in the bank, you imagine that even if the company folded, they’d go back home and live off the interest. You on the other hand, if you didn’t get a new job in three months, you’d have to move back home, and go back to a routine of sending CVs, sleeping at 3 a.m and waking up at 11. Then you turn your chair back and get back to typing.

What if being a dedicated employee means that when you finally become an owner of your own outfit, karma will be kind to you, and you’ll get workers with the level of dedication and hard work that got you wealthy? But what if you get the unfair side of the world, and your dedication confines you to a corner desk, with an in tray that is 5X fuller than your out tray? And you end up bitter, old, in crisis and with a body that your spouse hates (because your dedication meant you didn’t go to the gym).

“Truth is everybody is going to hurt you: you just gotta find the ones worth suffering for”. I wish I came up with that, sounds so deep and wise, and big companies would pay me to use that quote, but Bob Marley said that. I’d tweak it and say every chairman will exploit you, (that’s the basis of capitalism), you just have to find a chairman, and a salary, worth suffering for.

*Laugh Factory, Comedy Central and LOL Network. Some of the YouTube channels you can go to on your lunch break, and laugh to keep from crying.

Categories: Opinion

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