Wednesday, April 19, 2006

My Baby Takes The Morning Train

I know this will come to a shock to most of you, but the vile truth is that Jason works for a living. He sets his alarm 3, 4, sometimes even 5 times a week, gets up early on at least half those occasions, puts on pants (real pants, not pajama pants, but real pants, the kinds with zippers and belt loops and such) and goes to work.

I am not exactly what you would call a big fan of work. I strongly suspect that I am deathly allergic to it, and therefore I try never to be in the same room as work. Occasionally someone who doesn't know me very well will assume that I work, or that I am at least willing/capable of it, and perhaps may even suggest that I do a little something for them. This is why I get manicures. "I just got my nails done" is a get-out-of-work free card that works every time. Unfortunately, manicures cost money, and for those of us born without a trust fund, work is usually the pesky way to earn the stuff. It's distasteful, but true. Luckily, I happened upon a fail proof method for tricking others into earning money for me:

1. purchase push-up bra
2. see #1

Not everyone hates work; some go quite willingly. These people are clearly stupid. They have fallen pray to the relentless brain-washing of the global marketplace. These people, the "bosses", put you through the humiliating job-application process so that you'll feel grateful when you obtain a job you don't want at a pay rate you can barely live on.

Anyhoo. Jason is one of the above psychotics who do not loathe their work. He will tell you some crap about accomplishment, and self-worth, and blah, blah, blah, but between you and me, there are 2 basic reasons why Jason likes going to work:

1. At work, unlike home, he is the boss. He makes his own decisions. He tells people what to do, and they actually do it.

2. It gives him 8 Jamie-free hours per day, 5 days a week. Despite the fact that at work he deals with constant muzak, 100+ cranky employees, complainy customers, phone calls, emails, shipment, delivery, staff meetings and a thousand other distractions, he calls work "his quiet place."

But like all worker bees, he comes home to his Queen. His Queen, potential big-money-maker.

He never fails to ask, after his day at the office, "Did you write a best-seller today?"

I've never answered yes yet; most days, I can only say that I've written to his grandmother, and potentially she'll send another $12 cheque and a plea to keep Jesus in his heart on his next birthday.

But he's not discouraged. He believes.

He dreams of becoming a kept man. He calls me his "little investment"; he puts in a few solid years of work now so that I can stay home and write, and barring an alimony-free divorce, he'll be retired by the age of 30 with no more pressing constraints on his time than an 8-car garage filled with classic Jags and Beamers waiting to be rebuilt.

To his credit, he never tells people that I don't work. He actually refers to my writing as work, which, on the days that I eat Fritos and paint my toenails, makes me feel just a tad guilty. And I wonder how long he'll be so generous about our arrangement. When he turns 30 and our ability to eat still depends entirely on his paycheque, won't he start thinking that maybe it's time I pull my weight?

And then what? I have no skills! I have no experience! Resume is a dirty word to people like me.

And where did I get my princess presumptions anyway? My father was a trucker, for gawd's sake!

So basically, I'm screwed. I have roughly 4 years to either:

a) Leave Jason, poor schmuck, for a sugarier daddy.

b) Convince Jason that his manhood depends on his ability/willingness to provide.

c) Write a serious money-maker or exploit some other get-rich-quick scheme.

Unfortunately, many of these options sound a lot like work. Except for writing, of course. I happen to like writing, but only when I can write at my own pace. "Art should not be rushed" I say, but what I really mean is "I should not be rushed." And certainly, I have no idea how to write "popular" fiction, and have no particular inclination to do so anyway. The most highly printed material is The Bible, but it's been done to death. The second most printed piece is the Ikea catalogue, and frankly, I think I'd have a better chance with the religious stuff.

So there you have it, Jason.

Don't quit your day job.

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