Archive for Careers

Australian Supervisor – Banality TV or just another s#!t job?

Posted in Tales From Hell with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 25, 2008 by Buck Frain

Some are born mediocre, some achieve mediocrity and some have mediocrity thrust upon ‘em. 

Oh, for simplicity. Life has become a cheesy, unkempt socialist minge clamped suffocatingly over my red-wine-hungover face. Why, for the love of mercy, can’t I die in my sleep? Why don’t angry gang members just randomly shoot me while I’m buying coffee? I apologise, dear reader, for the infrequency of my entries of late but life my has taken an hitherto unprecedented turn for the feculently absurd.

My evil mouth-breathing minotaur of a boss called me into her office at the end of the week. She was terribly excited and that scared the living fuck out of me. If L.F. is happy about anything then either Creed are in town or something else is very wrong in the world. Indeed it was the latter.

She’d called me in to offer me the opportunity of vying for a promotion. Not to offer me one but to tell me I was now part of a bizarre selection process that appears like a cruel and unusual punishment in itself, for a position that no right-minded person would want in the first place.

They want a new supervisor. Supervisors are the pitiful wastes of humanity who oversee phoneroom work but have no real power except their own bitterness. So The Wobblers have selected four of the more literate and socially presentable interviewers, myself oddly included, to train as Team Leaders (Team Leaders are the people who listen to the calls that you agree to being listened to when bastards like me phone you) for a couple of months, at the end of which one of us would win* and be the new supervisor. She actually said win, I can’t wait for the day my doctor tells me I’ve won cancer.

The only thing I could think as she described this absurdity was that I should immediately call Channel 31 and tell them to get some RMIT students over here to turn it into a reality TV show called Australian Supervisor. It would be brilliant, the briefings and meetings with all their many office sub-plots streaming off. The learning of the ropes, the discussions about  troublesome interviewers, the monitoring the calls between interviewers and the general public, the confessions as we cry about having to reprimand our former comrades over petty transgressions, the patronising analyses of L.F. and the other supers as they rate us against one another. Of course the reality TV version would be much more exciting than the actual reality as the public would be able to vote on us and someone other than ourselves would bear witness to this pitiful existence. The sad banality is far more hopeless, but to my own surprise, after a little resistance, I accepted the offer. I tried to shrug it off initially but L.F. really wanted me to do it, any reasonable employer would have fired me on the spot for my lack of gratitude and work ethic.

Gee, I don’t know. The good thing about interviewing is I can leave for a week or two and still have a job when I come back. Can I still do that as a supervisor?

Well, …yes. I’d need notice but …yes, that’s fine.

How much extra do I earn an hour for all this?

Well, initially…not much…but the successful applicant will make $ 😦

You know, that’s not very much for being accountable for stuff?

Yes, but you’ll find this is a gateway position in the organisation and you could go from here to anywhere if you work hard enough…

What a cuntful pack of bullshit. The words market research and career should not end up in the same sentence together…ever! I should have dropped my trousers in front of her and snapped off a big steaming shit right on her desk before walking away forever, but I didn’t. I listened to the bullshit, I nodded and smiled and I acquiesced. I deluded myself that I would defiantly take the system for all I could at any opportunity, but really…?

In truth, I just sold out. I’m a weak piece of shit the same as all the many people I despise. Fuck, I hate myself, but sadly looking down the barrel of the continued mindless tedium of interviewing, I couldn’t say no. I am such a whore, but like a convict faced with the choice between continued incarceration or parole into an unforgiving world of prejudiced oppression and at-best minimum wage slavery, I chose parole. At least it breaks the tedium, I’ll still be a casual worker with no penalty rates or paid holidays, sick leave or job security, but at least the shifts are longer. Fuck me, who’d have thought I’d ever want to spend more time in that shit-hole than I already do?

If anyone knows how to make bombs out of paper clips and photocopier toner please email the recipe to buck.frain@gmail.com .

 

*She didn’t tell us what would happen to the three applicants who lose, does it not seem strange that none of us actually asked that?

I’m Telex You, Gestetner Fax Outta Here!

Posted in Human Stupidity with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 15, 2008 by Buck Frain

What the prolapsed rectum is with people who persist in using fax machines? I’m sorry but there’s no fucking excuse anymore. NO FUCKING EXCUSE!!! Get out of the cunting stone age, you great-grandmotherfuckers! 

 

I had mistakenly believed the enduring references to fax numbers on letterheads and business cards were just an indication of a laziness in updating stationery. If the last few days are anything to go by, however, I am wrong and there is army of tree-murdering recalcitrants out there desperately hanging on to their fax machines and forcing others to use them in the hope they’ll eventually acquire some kind of officeretro coolness. It’s pitifully fucked. 

 

I applied for two jobs recently where the recruitment monkeys asked if I could fax my resume in. Could I? I don’t know, could you go fuck yourself in the arse with a big rubber prick? To the first I replied: 

No, I’ll have to email you, I don’t have a fax machine. 

 

I was perplexed. People still use these things? WHY? Why would you use a fucking fax machine? They suck! How’s carrier pidgeon, will that do? I just don’t get it. The second time it happened I was got fucked off, however, I tried to remain cool and nonchalantly replied: 

No, I’ll have to e-mail you. My fax machine’s been less than reliable since I chopped into pieces with an axe. 

 

There was a stunned silence as the HR guy tried to process this information until, finally, he gave a weak: 

Ahm…I’m sorry? 

 

I don’t have a fax, dude, I’ve got a computer…and…I was messing with you. 

 

Nothing. Why is it that the people who work in human resources are the people with the least grip on humanity? Maybe it’s the same crushing irony of careers advisors – what a shit job, why would anyone listen to them ever? 

 

I applied for yet another job, a real job I had thought. I was reasonably interested in the business, the position looked promising…until I received a call from them requesting my fax number so they could send me some information to look over before the interview. 

How about I give you my email address? 

 

The vacant and, I assume, blonde entity on the other end of the phone gave a petulant sigh and tried to ply me for the path of least resistance:

Your fax number would be a lot quicker…for us, you know. 

 

I somehow doubt that – I don’t have a fax. Could you TELEX me?

 

Oh, I don’t know…I don’t think we have that…well, is there a fax at your post office? Or…well, I suppose I could send it by regular mail but there’s no guarantee you’d have much time with it before the interview… 

 

The job had lost all its lustre. It was dead to me now.

My Post Office? What the fuck? Are you calling me from the past? What the shat-in-fridge is wrong with you? E-mail, you stinking fucker! Have you not heard of it? It’s great: it doesn’t kill trees, it doesn’t degrade the quality of documents, it doesn’t cost you money and it has fuck all of a carbon footprint, BINT! You know what? Fuck you! FUCK YOU!!! Take the documents, the interview, the job and your whole company, fax it all to yourself, roll it up and shove it up your ARSE!!! I hate you! I fucking hate your short-sighted, environmentally cancerous, shit-sucking, lazy fuckedness! I hope to find you trapped under a vending machine early one Tuesday morning after a long weekend, a breath away from death so your last memory can be me hanging a big steaming shit into your gasping mouth!!!

 Hmm…that’d have to confuse the Jesus out of the forensic team, wouldn’t it? 

 

I digress. Unfortunately, none of that tirade actually came out of my mouth. I did manage to impart that if the facility of e-mail was too complicated for her company then I probably wasn’t too interested in working there, gave her my e-mail address and hung up. Yep, Won’t be hearing from those bastards. You wonder why I’m trapped in my dead-end limbo existence? Too bad. Fuck it!

 

Faxes have no place in our world except perhaps in a Museum For Boring Shit That Always Sucked. They’re a bad piece of equipment – they ruin everything, they jam like bastards, they use that stupid replica toilet paper and they have been thoroughly superceded in the most remote parts of the planet for well over a decade. Anyone who ever uses one now is obviously a complete CUNT and should be beaten to death with their stupid, cunty, shit-ridden fax machine for being an irredeemably FUCKED human being. GET FUCKED!!!

Corporate Freeloaders – Just Turning A Buck & Being Frank

Posted in Rage Against The Machine with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 27, 2008 by Buck Frain

Corporate freeloading is at an all time high, it seems to me that the world is filled with two types of people: the poor who, despite my reasonably comfortable western existence, I consider myself one of; and the rich who, it seems, are all lying, shit-sucking, opportunist arseholes who should all be butchered like pigs.

 

I went for a job interview today, in a desperate effort to improve my life and find some greater level of contentment or even happiness. I realise that might gravely change the complexion of this blog but I’m happy to hazard that, call me selfish.

 

This was an interview for a real job, at a real company, with supposedly real people doing something that possibly might be challenging, interesting and not leave me with a musty residue of self-loathing I need to douse liberally with beer after every shift. I mean, wouldn’t it be great to go to work for people you like, doing something you believe in? That’d be fuckin’ brilliant! So, I was excited and a little nervous as I sat in a plush leather seat in the waiting room. The receptionist had been friendly in a disarmingly genuine way and I felt…at home…for a while.

 

A genial man I’ll call Frank, because that’s his name, greeted me and led me into a meeting room with a panel of four other executives all sat behind a large table at one end of which sat a video camera. Introductions, I sat, all very friendly, hmm…the camera watched silently. Frank handed me a piece of paper,

 

Would you mind filling this out? We’d like to video the interview for training purposes, it’s just a waiver.

 

I stared at the piece of paper for a little while. I was thrown, I wasn’t expecting this and I didn’t know how to react. I looked up at the panel and then back at the waiver. I couldn’t focus clearly with the panel scrutinizing me to read it properly but it said something to the effect that they would be able to use the video in-house pretty much as they saw fit and that I wouldn’t be making any cash out of it. Nah…it just didn’t sit right.

 

Hey look, um…I don’t really feel comfortable with this…

 

I indicated the camera and waiver.

 

That’s fine, that’s fine, let’s just get down to business.

 

I got the feeling it kinda wasn’t fine. I’d ear-marked myself as a trouble maker, I was definitely not a company man, I couldn’t be trusted to toe the line. The rest of the interview went smoothly, I guess, pleasant goodbyes, exit.

 

The further I got from the office, the angrier I got. What the steaming shit sandwich was that all about? In the old days they would get actors – not famous ones – to do corporate training videos, and they’d pay them with money – not much money. These cunts wanted me to provide them with training tools for free without even the guarantee of a job. What the fuck is that about? How much more disgustingly opportunistic could they be? Exploiting people who want jobs for company interviewer training materials. Was it a test? Was that part of the deal, if you don’t agree to be filmed we won’t even consider you for the position? And what the stapled pissflaps else were they going to use the video for? Maybe a mood lightener after lunch at boring seminars: And here’s some of the useless shit-sacks we DIDN”T hire this year! Was I to be part of an Idol-style montage of losers to entertain soulless obese executives. By this stage, I wasn’t just a bit narky about it, I was royally fucked off! I wanted to call that smarmy prick, Frank, and tell him:

 

Hey Frank, I’ve had a think about it and y’know what? You can use the video, that’s fine with me, on one condition. That you and the other members of your panel each eat a full teaspoon of my shit. How’s that sound, Frank? I’ll even bring the spoons! Ya fuckin’ CUNT! GET FUCKED!!!

 

I had the mobile in my hand. I had the number on my screen. I didn’t want their job any more so it wasn’t about not wanting to burn bridges, I just realised that Frank wouldn’t get it. The Franks of the world won’t understand people’s indignation at corporate exploitation and even if they did, The Franks probably wouldn’t care.

 

I have never met an honest rich person. Is that just how it works?

Having A Big Shit In The Nest

Posted in Tales From Hell with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 17, 2008 by Buck Frain

Seeing as I’ve begun to bite the hand that feeds me, I might as well do the job properly and gnaw the fucker right off.

I work for Corgan Research, one of the country’s oldest MR firms. It sucks and is run by a complete maniac called Barry Corgan – big C, little organ, or so we suspect. Barry inherited the company from the founder, his father, so he’s always been rich and has never had to relate to people. He dresses like Gregory Peck in The Boys From Brazil, only shorter and without the moustache or charisma and a Barry’s a bit more of a nazi. The only way he ever communicates with anyone is by shouting at them. Thank fuck he hardly ever condescends to visit us. The odd occasions he does is usually to gloat about his empire to boozed up potential clients.


As head of the company he has established a culture of fear, pettiness and disaffected slovenliness. Thanks to a careful maneuvering around, or in some cases a complete flouting of, industrial relations and tax laws everyone in the entire building is paid well below any industry minimums. This results in everyone only doing the bare minimum they can get away with without getting fired and ripping the system for anything they can whenever opportunity arises. Barry treats every employee as if they are a thief and this sort of punitive management style filters down through the whole organisation. He routinely fires people on the spot so everyone fears and despises him, hates their job, and is suspicious of their co-workers. Interviewers are the lowest of the low, everyone has more power than us and despite the fact that none of them would have jobs if we weren’t here, I understand that most consider us some sort of subhuman troglodytes. Unfortunately, they’re occasionally correct. It’s a truly demoralising work environment.

The two main surveys we do are one for a big tobacco company on smoking habits. Our conspiracy theory has me certain the information they get from this is filed away for future legal cases to prove the vast majority of smokers smoke more than one brand of cigarettes so, when you try to sue them because of your lungs are rotting and your cock’s fallen off, they can say How do you know it was OUR cigarettes that caused your cancer? Pretty evil, huh? 

The other is for The Cuntingwealthy Bank, interviewing their customers about their level of satisfaction with the service they receive. This is gold because we have to rewrite customers’ actual responses into less offensive, more company-positive messages that are then passed on to the branches to contribute to employee KPIs and are posted on the internal website so the shareholders can see what a great company they own. Also a wee bit evil, no? It goes against everything market research is supposed to represent. If there was ever integrity in the simple gathering of information to find truths it has been corrupted by Barry and his corporate shit-sucking mates. It makes me wonder why we bother calling people at all for this project – we could just make the shit up, that is what we’re doing most of the time anyway.

The problem at its root is that the business of market research is a fiction. Our company produces nothing. Numbers on a page that are the result of meticulously engineered questionnaires tailored to produce the exact outcomes desired by the client. The manner in which the work is carried out is completely irrelevant. You could pay people top dollar for the best work or, like Barry does, pay the bare minimum to keep yourself out of jail and say bollocks to quality. The end results are indistinguishable from one another, so unless you have any interest in people as anything other than earning potential, it makes sense to create a shithole like Corgan’s.

This does not, however, change the fact that Barry Corgan is an evil dog-felching bastard and his empire is thoroughly contemptible. I believe, if you employ people, you have a duty to provide them with an environment where, even if their job is meaningless, they feel as though they are respected, they’re paid properly and treated with basic human dignity. Barry Corgan is a rotten-to-the-core-son-of-a-whore and I would happily beat the fucker to a stinking bloody pulp and then do a shit in his hat. Fuck you Barry!!!

My Confession – The Horrible Truth.

Posted in Tales From Hell with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 15, 2008 by Buck Frain

I work in a market research call centre. My job is to call people like you on the telephone and ask you all manner of pointless questions, while you try to prepare dinner or bathe your children, about products and services you don’t care about in order that faceless corporations can work out how better to get you to hand over your cash to them. So now you know the horrible truth. And you wondered why I was so angry?

Market research is where artistic mediocrities come to die. Dispirited by the corporatisation of the arts and the hopeless lack of funding for, or public interest in, anything that can’t be manipulated to sell burgers, we enter the career cul-de-sac of MR with the illusion of keeping our options open but secretly knowing that we’ll be here until we either die or our jobs get outsourced to a company in Bangalore.

I get out of the lift and clock into hell by pressing my thumbprint onto the scanner plate. Yes, they hate and distrust us that much. I sit at a booth with a neolithic computer, a dialer and a headset. Either side of me sit clones of me, broken artists, impoverished students, gambling addicts, the socially, aesthetically, or mentally challenged, society’s talking wounded. For four to eight hours at a stretch I sit while the auto-dialer dials for me, I say the words that appear in front of my face and key in the responses as given by the respondent. Creativity and initiative are dismissible offences. My job is to be a phone monkey. Say the fuckin’ words!

Of course, I could get another job. But could I get one that pays this well with so little work involved? Probably not. And there’s the rub. It’s Boiling Frog Syndrome – getting paid for sitting talking to people, drinking tea whilst gradually having one’s creativity, imagination, one’s very soul eroded through the dull repetition of mindless research-speak.

If your bank was a person would you be its friend?

Do agree or disagree that your current mobile phone defines your masculinity?

How relevant or irrelevant do you feel your current career makes you to reality? Would you say very relevant, relevant, neither relevant nor irrelevant, irrelevant or completely irrelevant?

Neither relevant nor irrelevant – nice grey area! Is it possible for anything to ever be neither relevant nor irrelevant?

The sad thing this job has really done to me is it’s given me an accurate picture of the society in which I live. I used to think most people in Australia were intelligent and open-minded, slightly left-thinking and generally good-natured. I was wrong, that was just the people I came into contact with. The Howard government’s longevity should have been a dead giveaway. I know now that most Australians are apthetic, sexist, racist, paranoid, hostile, right-wing, sport-obsessed, binge-drinking imbeciles who can’t even spell their own suburb of residence.

How did you get my number?

Well, sir, for this particular project we use random digit dialing…

Don’t bullshit me, I’ve got a silent number…

I understand that sir, what a lot of people don’t realise when they pay for their “silent” number is that all they pay for is for it not to be listed in the white pages or passed on by directory assistance. We have a computer program that generates numbers at random…

That’s impossible, it’s SILENT!!! How can you ring it?

Do you have children?

No!

Do you have friends with children?

Why?

Imagine your friend’s child at two years old…

She’s four!

…at four years old, takes the phone and just dials a jumble of numbers. If those numbers just happened to be your phone number, your phone would ring, wouldn’t it?

Yeah…

Our program is like that child – numbers at random…

Youse are fucked! I’m gonna sue you! You’ll be going to jail, mate and then you won’t be so fuckin’ smart, will ya?

I assure you we’re not doing anything illegal, if you don’t want to participate, all you have to do is decline.

Ya fuckin’ what?

Would you like to speak to my supervisor?

I get a few of these a night. I almost look forward to the stupidity – it breaks the monotony, and dealing with idiots is the only time we’re allowed any creative latitude, all within the bounds of professional civility, of course. A co-worker was sings …I hate people, I wanna kill ’em… Oh, how I empathise.

If you live in Australia, USA or UK there’s a very real possiblity that I may have rung you in the last couple of years. I may have actually annoyed you or someone in your household personally. If I have, I humbly apologise. If not, stay close to the phone because tonight could be your lucky night.