Thursday, February 03, 2005

You’ll Be In Some Sputnik Baby, But I’ll Be Underground 

I’ve done being ambitious. I’ve laboured and slogged, and put in the hours and driven the extra mile, mile after mile of stuck in traffic on the motorway miles, so far away from where I’ve wanted to be that sometimes I’ve actually felt homesick.
I’ve also done taking it easy and letting “my career”, such as it is, just kind of drift along, out of my control, going with the flow in a who-knows-what’s-around-the-corner kind of way.

Some years I’ve had fair-to-respectable pay rises and been treated well. Other times I’ve had zilch and been treated like shit.

What I’ve learned is that there’s never a correlation between how hard I push and how well I’m rewarded. It’s not so much random as completely irrelevant. If Bill Surname Chief Executive Officer is feeling a bit flush he might give us a pay rise, or he might not. It has nothing to do with me.

I’ve also found that not being ambitious gives me more time for other stuff and suits my temperament much better. Paradoxically, I think it makes me more productive. You want to chase your tail all day in the heat of the sun? Knock yourself out. But it ain’t me, babe.

I was telling Stella all this just thirty minutes after where I left off yesterday. I’d thought about it for a while, then went back into her office and tore up the post it note I’d left on her desk, just seconds before she walked in.

I said I’ve no axe to grind with anyone being as ambitious as they want to be.
I just don’t think it’s right to expect others to be ambitious because it suits your own ends, and especially not when there’s no guarantee of a pot of carrots at the end of the rainbow.
It equates to peddling false hope, which is just… it’s just…

“Heinous?” she interrupted. “Blimey Tim, I didn’t know you felt so strongly. Have a vitamin tablet.”

I chose one at random and it instantly fizzed and frothed up inside my gob, putting me in a mild state of ‘soon I won’t be able to breathe and this is how I’ll end my days, foaming at the mouth and moaning in my boss’s office about nothing in particular’ induced panic.

“You’re supposed to dissolve that one in water first, you idiot.”

I think I might finally be getting through to her.

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