Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Off to the Philippines again!

Listening to Webjay playlist: Sexy and Swinging

Yes, it's getting to be that time again. I have airline tickets and I'm going to see Charlize again! By the time I see her she will be about 9 months old and probably won't have a clue about this stinky, chubby, white guy that I have somehow turned into over the past 30-odd years. Naturally, I'm looking forward to seeing Rosi and Rowena too but I'm not so worried about their reactions. At least I know they will recognize me.

The funny thing is that, at the moment, I'm spending all of my time being worried about what my bosses will say when I've told them that I'm off to the Philippines for nearly three weeks.

Despite their selfishness over the last few months, what with cutting my hours whenever they feel like it without granting me any sort of reasonable notice, I still feel qualms about telling them that I'm going on vacation.

Meanwhile, things look pretty good for 2007. I have been promised a University job already. So long as nothing goes seriously wrong with the paperwork at that University I will have a nice job as of March. And I have another job interview with a second University coming up.

But for some reason I have an overbearing feeling of anxiety about nearly everything. Just goes to show you, there is no good time to quit smoking. But my progress is good. Better than usual.

So, the bosses?
Forget them. Every holiday my hours get cut back without notice and every time it works out well for them, I get a day or a class cut.

"Sorry no class next Thursday, we are having a Christmas party"

or

"Come early next Tuesday, I want you to teach huge Christmas party classes of 30 and 40 students at a time. All the while you can be trussed up like Jolly old Saint Nick".

I know the students pay monthly fees so the money that I lose from these unexpected cuts goes to line my boss' pockets. I know they are only looking out for themselves. They are just taking advantage of the situation to save money on the expensive foreigner whenever possible.

And why shouldn't they? It wasn't fine with me before but it works out better this way. This gives me a good excuse for taking an unscheduled holiday.

"Hey all of my hours are being cut back, I might as well take a holiday and enjoy the time off, maybe see if my daughter still recognizes me. By the way, thanks for paying me two weeks late, and also thanks heaps for cutting my wages for Christmas -- I much prefer lower wages to receiving an end-of-year bonus".


Then, come March I'm in for 11 consecutive paychecks with a double on the 12th month for good behaviour and, with any luck, a solid month for travel and recuperation in the fall and winter too boot!

I guess that is the problem. It sounds too good to be true. I haven't exactly been working my ass off over here but a lucky break like this sounds too much like signing your soul away to the devil.

This is where constructive thought simply needs to kick in. Instead of habitually questioning possibilities that could lead to overall pleasantry and enjoyment of life I need to question the niggling things that could lead to great pain and anguish.

Life-long training is hard to counteract. This is the real reason that makes a liberal arts education worth the apparent lack of job prospects. At least for those who get their degree in a field that promotes self awareness.

But strangely I am reminded of some of my old StatsCan colleagues. Honestly I do not live simply to make fun of others -- it's just so hard not to make fun of the silly ones. I remember one particular woman that I was found of, though not for her brains, she was really a sweet woman. She chided me to stop smoking because it would be better for the environment.

"Think about all that toxic smoke your breath into the air everyday while you are smoking".

She drove an SUV.

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