I gave my notice at work the other day. It felt incredibly momentous. Like, fuck, even if something totally random or awful happens and I never move to NC (which is for sure going to happen, but IF) even then I would need to find a new job and reinvent my life.
So it's really worrisome and stressful, but then the other deeper part of me is jumping up and down in glee, worked up like a mid 90s Canadian pop music video, because the corporate world isn't just "not for me", it's poison to "everyone." No matter how they try to humanize it, and this company I'm leaving tried a lot they really did, but boxes are still boxes. Inside for 12 hours is still inside for 12 hours. Social pressure is still social pressure. So my body is slowly becoming aware that the immediate stress of being worried about money is nothing in comparison the weight of long term stress I didn't even know was there till it started melting. I have a dying glacier on my chest it turns out. I was so concerned about the sharp little rocks at the terminus, and I completely forgot about the heft of the snow, and now it turns out I have all these grooves and channels cut into me permanently. So, to continue this laborious metaphor towards it's awkward end - the only way I'm going to heal from this job is to find a way to fill those cuts in with - lakes? Yeah, okay, lakes.
A List of Words I Have Learned to Hate, and an Attempt to Rescue Them for Future Use:
CHOICE: There is something insidious about offering someone a choice. A choice is a jewel toned snake on an apple tree branch. It's a very serious sacred thing, a split second conflict that can change a whole story's direction. The levels of import are infinite. It's biologically stressful. Is there really any physical difference between choosing between the colors of a dress, and choosing whether or not to file the missiles at the oncoming enemy spaceship? Condemnation and superiority are almost inherent, especially when it's someone actually presenting you with a choice, asking you a question. So how awful then when I have to take such a beautiful dangerous concept as a choice, and reduce it to a line I have to legally say to each customer 500 times a day or the state will fine us?
See also: OPTION
COMPLIANCE: The quality of bending to another's will, of being willing, entirely subject and passive, but yet with this thin overtone of "I'm barely tolerating this for reasons I may or may not tell you." With-Pliable Body and Mind. It's kinda hot, right? Compliance is a sexy fucking word. It becomes significantly less sexy after 7 years of webinar meetings about it.
FOCUS: I wonder if it is even possible to pay close attention to a task without massive amounts of coffee? I bet it will be, once it's something I actually have emotion invested in. Cause thinking of a brain focusing, narrowing it's gaze like a camera or a telescope or a laser, that's super exciting and mystical. But if the object being focused on is whatever tiny inconsequential word changes they made to last years presentation on customer service expectations so they could make it seem like a brand new initiative this year, well that kind of focus for sure gives you brain cancer. Maybe eye cancer first, and then brain cancer.
QUALITY: This is a super evil crazy corporate word because it fails in two ways. First, here are the things that one should think of when we think quality: paintings, art, autos, furniture, houses, standards of living, air and water, food, girls and boys. Good healthy life affirming things. Chances are though that if you work for a corporation, no matter what their product is, it isn't true quality. It's probably only middling. Their sheer size alone will prevent them from having quality, and yet they will TALK ABOUT IT ALL THE TIME like it already exists, like it is their god given trait, sent from on high to fulfill their destiny. Every company is the Best At What They Do when they are talking to their employees.
Second, especially in a customer service based job like mine, oftentimes you are mostly judging your own quality, as an employee and therefore a person, because to the company your job performance is directly linked to your quality as an sentient individual. And your quality is based on a set of virtues determined by some team of communication majors in some far away department, and then approved by several other departments, and edited until all the meat is gone and only the bones and faint fog of flavor remains of what once might NOT have been a complete piece of HR horse shit. To have someone extorting you to judge your own quality in this environment seems abusive and malignant, like there's no way you could fight against those self esteem issues forever, eventually they would leach out into the rest of your real life, and you would find yourself actually thinking of yourself and your children in terms of attendance or team spirit.
RESOURCE: My resources are NOT my teammates or the horribly designed web page of guidelines. Resources are things like wind and water, and also maybe magic golden eggs which when you break them open produce things like tiny mice dressed in doublets who can go steal that necklace from the witch's bed table. THAT'S a resource. A feather that allows you to ride the North Wind, THAT'S a resource. A database is more like, a trap.
NETWORK: There is probably no way to save this word. We can only hold it as an example of what we're trying to save all these other words from. I am bitter about network. I feel like it could have been so cool if we had just kept it to ourselves.