Interesting. And how does that make you feel?
I used to date a psychologist. Possibly. It’s also possible that she was just hanging around with me for research purposes and I’ll end up being referred to as “Subject K” when she finally publishes her Big Book o’ Weirdos (working title).

Most people believe psychology involves sitting in a chair saying, “Tell me about your mother” and performing the occasional Jedi Mind Trick. While that viewpoint isn’t entirely wrong (because The Force does indeed give one power over weak minds), it ignores some of the more harrowing realities of the job.

A specific thing your typical shrinker of heads has to deal with is the fact that they are never off-duty. Even when they pack up for the day and go home, they still have to process all the batshit they’ve been exposed to during their sessions. To add to this, there are the frantic after-hours phone calls from clients with boundary issues (which is often a telling clue as to why they are in therapy in the first place).

One such phone call that derailed a quiet Saturday afternoon was from a panicking parent who was worried that some or other imaginary crisis might befall her hapless child. When I asked Obi-Juanita why she didn’t tell the caller that she wasn’t available after hours, she patiently explained that the shock would be too great. Or as she put it: “You can’t say that to mothers. You may as well tell them, ‘Sorry, I can’t talk right now – I’m having anal sex with a dog’“.

I’m beginning to understand why Freud needed all that cocaine.

The French fry Revolution

The revolution will not be televised. It will be Instagrammed
So the latest crop of cretins best and brightest of the new generation are protesting for free tertiary education again.

Their strategy this time: close the universities. Because that makes so much sense. It’s a bit like campaigning for orgasms by cutting off your penis. It seems that the shaggy-haired sandal squad are unable to recognise the giant metaphorical pistol they have aimed squarely at their unwashed collective foot. Then again, I’ve been informed that I’m “part of the problem” and “too old to understand”. I wasn’t aware that logic had an age limit, but there you go.

However, I actually DO understand why the instigators of this movement are so adamant about not paying fees: A scan of the jobs page of any local newspaper will swiftly reveal that there aren’t any organisations recruiting people with degrees ending in the word “studies”. Their future employment prospects almost certainly involve the phrase, “Would you like fries with that?”

The old joke about what you say to someone with a PhD in Humanities is a chilling reality in this country.

Thump thump thump

And that was AFTER filtering out all the Gurus, Ninjas and Rock Stars
One of the less palatable aspects of my job is bidding on government contracts. It would be less of trial if I thought it would be worth the effort, but it’s a complete waste of time.

Most state entities openly thumb their noses at the procurement regulations and carefully word their specifications to favour certain outcomes. The state officials have very itchy backs that require lots of scratching before you’re granted entrance to the preferred circle.

The fact that this is technically illegal is neither here nor there. The government occasionally makes a few disingenuous noises about “rooting out corruption” before election time, but the practice continues because few private firms have the stomach, stamina or stones to take the matter to court. They understand the power of the Dark Side.

Nevertheless, my boss insists that I keep hitting my head against this particular wall, because Senior Management Logic(TM) dictates that if something doesn’t work, you keep doing it until your skull pops.

Hit me baby one more time

Also, I’m more into self-flagellation.  I only relinquish the whip if I get dinner first
Several times over the past few months, my boss has instructed me to attend meetings on his behalf. One may be tempted to think that he is starting to entrust me with greater responsibility, but this conclusion would only be half right.

You see, the meetings in question have all arisen as a result of some project-related calamity and I’ve been sent as the designated company shit sponge. The thing that clued me in was the fact that I hadn’t actually worked on any of these jobs.

You know that unfortunate idiot that your typical customer service department trots out whenever an irate complainant demands to speak to the manager? Yup, that would be me.

Hand me the antiseptic, please.

The Grim Reaper

The cold, dead stare and subtle twitch adds authenticity
According to makers of motivational posters, the secret to a fulfilling career is to do something you love. This is great advice if you enjoy starving to death in a ditch, but not all that useful for the rest of us.

On the other hand, you’ll probably stand a (marginally) better chance of finding that dream job, if you actually know what you like. Take this dude, for example:

It would definitely have been more effective if he'd worn a dark hoodie

He has a simple, straightforward (albeit ambitious) goal. Fortunately, that annoying law against killing people is more of a guideline here in South Africa, so no worries there.

Consequently, if he applies himself, he could probably manage it in about five years. Assuming, of course, that he is able to secure some kind of sponsorship for his genocidal rampage AND if nobody fights back, runs away or hides.

However, his biggest obstacle will be staving off boredom. Repetitive tasks really do become deathly dull after a while.