I finished my 5 month term at a call center yesterday
and I feel like it's gonna take me 5 months
to find my bearings again.
Needless to say, the first thing I did this morning
was make a pot of coffee - and write.
Without wanting to sound ungrateful,
I couldn't wait to have time to myself again
and to have nothing on the agenda
but writing and painting.
We all do what we need to do to pay the bills,
but i learned a valuable lesson this time around
about how important it is to surround ourselves
with our own tribe -
with people who share the same values,
the same life philosophy.
When I first started there,
I knew I wouldn't "fit like a glove"
with the business types and the corporate setting.
I knew I would need to detach (mentally)
and just focus on doing my work.
I would be polite, and respectful of the differences,
considering that I was the one who accepted this job.
What I didn't know
was how alienated I would actually feel.
On my second week there,
I brought this print from home
and put it on my gray cubicle wall
so I would see it every day.
It's a water-colour i did a while back.
The quote may sound hypocritical to some,
because we all know how wealthy Steve Jobs was.
But it's poignant to me,
because he came to this realization
after he was diagnosed with terminal cancer.
Once your health is gone,
it doesn't matter how much money you have in the bank.
But after this print was on my wall a few days,
one of my colleagues came closer to the print,
read the words, and said:
"oh, coming from the mouth of babes.
Easy to say this when you have billions".
To which I replied:
that's why it's so powerful a message.
Because his billions didn't matter anymore.
The only thing that mattered now was time,
and he knew it.
After the 3rd person came over
to comment about the words of Steve Jobs,
i realized my print must have struck a nerve.
Especially with those there who live
as though money was the ONLY thing
The ones who choose to work overtime
rather than spend time with their families,
so they can make as much money as they can
and have all the toys.
The ones who no longer believe in dreams.
And i soon began to realize
that i really didn't fit there.
That I felt alone in the crowded coffee room,
because I had so little in common with the people there.
But the strange this is:
I was totally ok with that.
Actually, I was kinda happy not to fit in.
It felt good to know that I was different
and that I didn't share the same values.
It felt good to see the world
through my eyes
and my time there actually made me realize
how proud I am to be an artist
and to be marching to the beat of my own drum.
The shame I used to feel
at being seen by society as flaky or lost or lazy
is no longer there,
thanks, in part, to office work. :)
To all you artists out there,
TOOT YOUR HORNS!
The world needs your art,
your point of view!
It's a sad place without them.