Odd Socks and Odder Questions

I recently posted on how I was made redundant after working very hard on a piece of work expected to generate many leads for the company I worked for. It was very funny and went off on a tangent about how the Crash Bandicoot game is now far too hard to be enjoyable and, in some ways, it was a metaphor for the human condition. I would link to it so you could read it for yourself, but I had to delete it. After the euphoria of completing any creative endeavour that you’re proud of ebbs, you’re left with more clarity. That pride was rapidly sapped away as I came to the conclusion that swearing at a former employer and linking to their incompetence (a trait that seems all too common in positions of authority) probably wouldn’t endear me to future employers. I say I came to this conclusion; I sent it to a good friend of mine expecting her to respond ‘hah, you’re so funny, eloquent and sexy. It’s baffling that you are old bitter and alone.’

She didn’t say that.

‘Do you want another job?’ she asked.

‘No,’ I replied.

‘Okay, do you want to be homeless?’

‘Home is where the heart is, and my heart is an empty receptacle – nay it is a sieve. No matter what I try to fill it with it drains once again to an empty state.’

‘Will you stop with your suffering poet act? You’re not nearly talented or rich enough to get away with it.’

‘Fine, I’ll delete it.’

So, you’ll just have to take my word for it: it was funny.

My life now largely consists of getting up, dredging the plastic polluted depths of the job market, half-heartedly applying for new positions to take over my life and crush my spirit, checking the fridge to see if it’s magically refilled itself and then repeating the endless cycle.

The worst thing about being made redundant is other people’s concern. “Are you okay? What are you going to do?” They ask, as if losing a job is akin to being diagnosed with some rare blood disease. The second question is incredibly irksome, as it’s pretty obvious what I’m going to do. I’m going to get another job.

I don’t understand why people ask it.

Well, I was thinking of training to be a cobbler, smuggling myself across the channel and setting up shop in a small village in the south of France. There I will marry a beautiful French poet. We’ll drink cheap wine from the shoes I make as she recites poems, I have no hope in understanding, as I’m very dense when it comes to poetry… and I can’t speak French.

In fact, I’ve recently discovered I hate any question. Unless you can see a very basic and specific need for it. ‘Where is the library?’ for example is quite useful if you are in search of the library. My flatmate asking me ‘Why is there a sock in the hallway?’ is not such a question. Especially when he says it in an accusatory tone, as if I deliberately placed the offending sock there as part of some sinister scheme. Could he not have seen the sock and thought, as a reasonable person, “oh, there’s a sock in the hall. Must have been dropped there.” And moved on with his life? No, instead I have to become involved in some passive-aggressive discussion involving rogue socks.

Funnily enough, I spend a lot of my time, through no fault of my own, talking about socks. Like a psychologically healthy person, I don’t spend much time arranging or checking my socks, seeing as they’re going to be hidden by a shoe most of the day, which in turn will be hidden under a desk. There’s no reason why I should concern myself with my feet’s state of dress, seeing as very few people will look at them and even those that do should only be offering them the most cursory of glances.  And yet, I’m forever having to defend my character against defamatory statements from people whose minds just explode when they see someone wearing odd socks.

‘You couldn’t possibly be wearing odder socks!’ some say when I’m wearing one black one and one white one. I don’t think that’s true as I could be wearing one black one, and the other could be the severed head of an elephant. That would be odd.

But then again, I suppose that would call into question the definition of sock. So maybe, I’d be in the wrong there. The point is, I put on whatever socks happen to come out of the draw first. Socks are just there to avoid that horrible, hair raising feeling of foot against inner shoe. One thing I will bear in mind when I start my cobbling shop.

Another unnecessary question that gets under my skin and wriggles around is ‘do you know what I mean?’ It would be relevant if it was following the explanation of a complicated experiment to observe light acting as both a particle and a wave simultaneously, because then I could say ‘No, no I don’t know what you mean.’ And I’d probably get frustrated, seeing as I took a bite out of a physics book because I didn’t understand it and it made me feel stupid, so I had no choice but to confirm that feeling by attempting to eat the book.

It’s usually following a non-statement. ‘I thought that film could have been better in certain aspects. Do you know what I mean?’

‘Yes, I think I’m following that train of thought, complex as it is.’

Anyway, I’m struggling to get a job because, as can be seen, I lack the ability to focus.


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