Monday, February 8, 2010


The word loses its meaning once repeated across this page as every job I have ever had has lost its meaning once repeated across several months.

Like the custodian knows not to mop broken light bulbs; sweep a pile of honey or trust a wobbly wooden ladder. Like the waitress knows she shouldn't bring the new table's coffee with cream until the old table has their extra foamy cappuccino, grapefruit juice and hot chocolate (whip cream on the side). Like the begging tramp knows how to trick passerbys out of the change in their pockets with a tale of a misplaced home and a new found faith in God and His humanity. I, the grocery store cashier, know to handle a tomato as I would an egg and an egg as I would a broken butterfly.

"You need to envision it." My friend tells me.

I don't know what to envision for a new job. I never have. That's why I've always been a waitress, busser, boat decky, cashier or bank teller.

"And that's why you need to envision it. So you can figure out what you want."

So today, beneath a blanket and thin layer of hope, I am envisioning. I am asking the universe for a favor, a big selfish favor.

Dear Universe,

How is everything?

I would like a job where I do not punch a time clock. A job where I do not punch produce, granola or coffee codes. A job where I do not desire to punch the expressionless, idiotic faces of customers I am required to serve with a smile. I want a job where the only cash I count is my own. And the only dead, damp, plastic-wrapped, potentially salmonella carrying headless chickens I touch are the ones I am buying to bake. I want to write every day at home and in cozy cafe corners. And I don't want to ask for permission to pee anymore.

Here you are Universe. I'll understand if this one is too difficult for you. Like Santa Clause, you must be tired of custodians, waitresses, tramps and cashiers asking you to turn them into movie celebrities, lottery ticket winners, rock stars and writers. Perhaps you should envision what you'd rather be doing and create that job for yourself, but first, please help me so that I may quit my job.

Thank you.

Sincerely and Desperately,