Tuesday, October 26, 2004
Poems for the Unemployed
About 12 years ago I was looking for a job as a Writer - Technical, Research, Editing, Speeches.
The economy was at a lull and I couldn't get hired. I was looking for work through a fine County organization called Sacramento Professional Network which was quite marvelous and well run for a government organization.
In the process of this group, I wrote a little pamphlet to give to prospective employers, a little something to remember me by. It was 4 inches by 4 inches and had four pages of poems for the unemployed.
I thought I could make a strong impression on employers with my wit and erudition.
Well, I never got a job, but the poems are indeed witty and amusing. Here is what I wrote:
Poems for the Unemployed
I hear you need my services.
posted by Mark Butterworth |
Let me tell you, that’s bliss.
I know we’ll make a perfect match -
my skills, your money - natch.
How much are we talkin’ about?
These are tough times, no doubt,
but I have kids with college need
and a mistress to feed.
No, see, I still respect my wife,
but l’amour, hey? That’s life.
My morals? What’s this got to do . . . ?
My mistress? Your sister, too!
I want to work for you because: I learn quick,
I work hard, I promise I’ll never be sick.
Oh yes, I’m a self-starter, too; can work alone;
always on time. Be assured I give good phone.
I can file, transcribe, type 80 words a minute,
and organize. Hurray! When do I begin it?
There’s health, dental, and pension plans? That sounds great.
Yes, I work out. What about my legs, chest, and weight?
My last boss was a jerk.
The one before that, too.
I hate idiots, don’t you?
I’m very bright, you know. Brilliant really.
I can teach you who to hire, ideally.
Consider my qualifications, please.
I manage everything well and with ease.
I’m the best. I have vision. I have fire.
I have passion, and I can delegate;
or do it by myself, and all first rate.
Remember my name, at least toward these ends,
Clark Kent to you, Superman to my friends.
And then, after we had the interview,
they said I looked good; did my urine, to?
They gave me a cup. Said, please fill it up.
A panel of people, all steely eyed,
met to examine my in and outside.
They asked of my past, and more prying questions;
I tried to compose impressive confessions.
I increased profits 300%
by firing fifty who were redundant.
Having fulfilled my terms of employment,
with no one left to sack for enjoyment,
I looked again, the truth to tell of it,
and fired myself, just for the hell of it.
I had a job. Then I didn’t. And so,
I’m fully employed ex officio.
Through agencies, many folks got a job.
Except for Jerry, and neither for Bob.
One’s an idiot, the other’s a slob.
I’m told I’m not owed a thing;
what I get is what’s deserved.
I didn’t ask to be born,
yet, I want to be preserved.
The problem with work: it isn’t wanted.
Wasn’t I born to play? Thus, I’m haunted.
I can’t wait for heave. There’s real work there.
No commute, no suit, no dyeing my hair.
I’ll build a house just like I always planned,
and catch up n all the sleep I can stand;
with eggs, hash browns, and bacon everyday,
and chocolate cake, French food, wine and pate.
Between each meal, I’ll make a world or two,
like God, and populate it as I do;
and watch a race ascend intelligent
from simple creatures to bewilderment.
Hey, Bub! You fat head fool, you stupid slob!
Listen, you clown; why not give me the job?
Any fool or monkey is qualified.
Hell, what’s that problem? I ain’t got no pride.
I want a job. I need the money.
And yeah, I know it’s slavery;
nothing I planned or voted on;
but there’s this girl and car, you see.
They call me a dislocated worker.
I’m not a snob.
It means I’m out of a job.
Or a little unemployed.
Like my wife was a little pregnant,
and our baby a little late.
So how did I dislocate
It isn’t that the work is all that great.
Someone else could do it, too.
It isn’t that rewards are profligate.
I just like to work, don’t you?