Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Getting to Work

Hi ho, Hi ho, it’s off to work we go! But how? did we ever get there in the first place? Back in the day, humans ran around in small packs gathering nuts and berries to feed off of. I remember one of my anthropology professors saying that this gathering process only took about four hours a day, leaving these neanderthals plenty of leisure time to practice religion and make cave paintings.

How did we ever go from working 4 hours a day to working 16+ hours a day? Certainly work is pervasive now, more than ever. We make all sorts of decisions based off of work. Work dictates where we live and how long we commute. It dictates the people we meet, know, and come to love. It even dictates what we think about day in and day out.

So is work just a necessary evil? What would life today be like without work? How would you define a purpose every day? Do we really even need to have a sense of purpose? Where has purpose gotten us? Take a look around the globe. People with an over zealous sense of purpose are causing trouble everywhere you look. Could it be that purposeless meandering through life is the most peaceful way to live?

We take our theme today, “Getting to Work” as a jumping off point for these and many other interesting ideas!


1) Get an Aeron (although, please, not an actual aeron but perhaps something like an Aeron, an Aeron knockoff perhaps or the platonic ideal of an Aeron would be fine as well):
I guess the contrartian streak in us couldn't let this one go, or rather couldn't let YOU go...to work any more. At least not in the same old nose meets grindstone in unfortunate collission kinda way. Yes the time has come to stop the madness and make the leap, work from home. Countrary to popular belief, you do not actually need any definable skills, ideas, intelligence or work ethic to successfully work at home, what you do need however, is a REALLY REALLY GOOD CHAIR. So here is our recommendation, invest in your butt, slate has a wonderful run down of chairs that rival some really shitty used automobiles in price. There is always this quasi authoritative looking thing for less money. And if you are still waffling on price, well just go steal a few milk crates, you cheap bastard.

2) PRE-MIXED COMMUTER PODCASTS: Oooo, this is an idea I am really excited about. First you create a website, lets call it the Pod-tastic Commuter Computer. What this handy little site does is create a pre-mixed podcast based on pre-selected criteria such as morning news, music, talk radio, erotic fiction (naughty!) or that language course you've been procrastinating about. At the site you simply enter in the approximate time of your commute, along with said criteria and presto, your Pod-tastic Commuter Computer will spit out a perfectly packaged podcast for you to rake with you as you grab a donut mightily with your teeth, race out the door and into your own little commuter blissmobile...ah the joys of technology.

3) Right to Work: The ecclesiatical writer said,

Therefore I saw that there is nothing better, than that a man should rejoice in his work; for that is his portion: for who can bring him to see what will be after him?

This quote might be right. Really, what is more noble than working? To work, in this day and age, means to be a productive member of society, contributing to the national economy. There are all kinds of work. Some work exists simply to support other work. But it is all tied together in a tightly woven matrix that economists, sociologies, psychologies (academics in general) devote lifetimes to parsing.

Do we have a right to work? Or is it a priveldge? Who gets to work? Visas are hot commodities in most industrialized nations. Immigrants flock in search of steady, secure work. In a culture that is never satisfied, always grasping, ever seeking the eternal more, here a novel idea: take a second to reflect on how nice it is to be able to work – whatever it is you do to support yourself. It’s like gathering nuts and berries – except it’s emails, faxes, pay stubs, and client meetings – less romantic, but still every bit as important.

4) Green Breathing: Have you ever left your window open and noticed a black film develop on your window sill? If you answered yes to that question you probably live in a major urban center. Perhaps London, New York or Tokyo.

Logic would tell us that if black crud is being deposited on our window sill, it's probably coming from the air. Typically people breathe air and so it follows that we are breathing aforesaid black crud. Why aren't we doing something to clean the air we breathe? Green buildings are becoming more popular, but the vast majority of people just keep sucking down the same old dirty air.

Perhaps the worst case is riding your bike to work along the highway. Here's the idea, lets engage in an activity which requires our body to breathe at an accelerated rate. Now let's do this activity right by the source of pollution. Why don't more people wear these? Sure, they're scary looking, but to be honest, who wouldn't want to look scary in New York City. Consider it also as a personal saftey measure. This cycling anti pollution mask sells for around $40.

City Mask

We encourage you. Bike to work! But be good to your lungs - wear a particle respirator!

5) Walk to Work Day: I have had my fill of bicycles and their pesky tribe, automobiles make me wince, Segways and I have long parted ways. Were talking about a revolution here so I propose a national walk to work day! Yes perhaps a bit more relevant for the urban folks, but don't you crap out on us suburban refugees, strap on your sneakers and hit the streets. This international holiday would become a tremendous tour defeets uniting us all, if only for a brief moment, in the one precious bi-pedal act that separates us from other beasts of burden.


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