Friday, March 21, 2008

Crackerbox Palace

I hate my job.

Let me say that again. I hate my job.

It is a necessary evil, working where I do, for two reasons. First, I get to telecommute. To those not familiar with the term, it means I get to work from home. So, from the standpoint of convenience, it is a good thing. I save on gas, I don't have to haul my ass out in the snow, rain, and other bits of nature's wrath that gets thrown at us here in western NY. Our winters can have a tendency to be brutal, (though not as bad as Syracuse, in terms of snow pack) and the actual building where I would work has a parking lot that always seems full. This entails parking at an auxiliary lot across the main road, hopping a shuttle, (which is always crowded) and braving the elements. Now of course, there is also the advantage of going to work in whatever attire I deem fit for my mood that day.

So, that is the not too bad element of the job. Everything else? Well, let's just say that I work at a place that is a 21st century version of the Triangle Shirtwaist factory in terms of the way people think. (Sorry, I am not going to do your homework for you on this one, you'll have to look up the reference, especially my Euro friends.) It is an outsourcing company, essentially a cube farm, and the only thing missing from there are the food troughs at each desk. As with all outsourcing companies, the bottom line is the bottom line. Corporate speak abounds, and the idea of "leadership" amongst the managers is something that is often spoken but rarely, or I should say never demonstrated.

I understand the concept that companies outsource to save least in theory. I have worked on 3 programs there in 2 years, and 1 out of the 3 actually terminated the contract with my company because they found it was costing them more money to outsource. Currently, I do tech support for a large, multi-state cable TV company and cover the southwest.

I think the heat really fries people's brains there, as my stupid-o-meter always seems to be in the red when I am dealing with customers from there.

So, why do I stay? This is reason number 2. It is, unfortunately an evil I have to put up with for at least one more year (hopefully less) as I get this writing business off the ground. You see, I get to work nights, 9 pm to 3 am, 5 days a week, with the other 20 hours of work on whatever time I choose to put in. This makes things terribly convenient when trying to start up a business, when you need daytime hours to do things like network, make contacts, talk with editors, etc. So, I swallow my pride, but not the Kool-Aid that they give us there, that it is such a fantastic place to be. Their attrition rate exposes the falsehood of that idea. Conformity however, is what they want.

Unfortunately, that offends my sensibilities.

"While you're a part of Crackerbox Palace
Do what the rest all do
Or face the fact that Crackerbox Palace
May have no other choice than to deport you"


Anonymous said...

I don't like to criticize, but you call yourself a writer and "hate" is the best you can come up with for that soul-sucking factory in the 9th circle of Hell in which we are forced to work in? Loathe, despise...there are many adjectives to describe the feelings of utter ooginess that ooze from every pore of the building's evil cement walls & through their phone cables of doom. But, aside from that, I love your blog. :)

Mr. Nighttime said...

Yes, but sometimes the KISS method is the best....;-) Besides, they don't deserve anything more flourishing.

Okay, maybe "seething hatred?" How's that? BTW, how are things D? ;-)