3.6 Careers Coach

The coach sat on the throne, but wasn’t playing a game.  He was wondering about a change in career, about finally telling his manger to just fuck off and leave him alone.  

This manager was one of those young graduates who had passed with an upper second; having kept up to date with all the latest industry blog terms for slave driving, didn’t quite understand not getting a first, nor when an employee quit or fell down dead.  Smartly dressed, the keener eye that was looking around for some assistance to block out the aggravating pep talk, would discern that the jacket fringes were being drained further of colour with every over-necessary dryclean. Regardless, it was smart wear, even if the office dress code was officially casual. 

There was always something with this manager, always something to discuss with the coach, something he couldn’t be smart about: the speed of delivery, how often he would take a toilet break, or a cigarette break, or a glass of water break.  It was as if he was expected to work simply non-stop, it was absodiculous. Of course, he needed this salary, so there was nothing to do but make excuses and then agree to try.  That was the key to not getting fired- he didn’t say he would achieve the ever-not-exactly-conspicuously increasing target, he simply said he would try.  He also continued to try, when not fucking exhausted, to find a different job.

He recalled applying for a cool job, a games tester, a dream job, at the time.  He was about to leave school- school was ass, the world was ass, video games were cool.  So, testing games was the best idea ever, ever, being the duration of his life so far.  To his dismay, the interview was not cool. They gave him some annoying and stupid tasks on some archaic machine, for a fucking hour, only to tell him that they needed someone with a degree.  It was infuriating but, looking back, he was sure he had dodged a bullet. The pay was dirt and the location was in the middle of nowhere. 

He then went to finish school, on to university, got a degree, then got a job as a temp.  The pay was dirt but at least he got to see various places in and around the city.  At his first post, there was an Italian sandwhicherie that he liked, they had one turkey escalope on offer with various fillings. He tried a different one every day.  It was exciting. He was sad when he had to leave before finishing the menu. Then it was off to a different office in another part of the city.  In every new job, the people were sparkling, the work was interesting, the sandwiches had variety, and then, after a year, it all blended into the same old shit. The agency was nice to him and kept giving him more work. His patience wore thinner, but the jobs would usually end before he got fed up with the manager and slapped them in the face. They seemed to get younger and younger. The Italian cafés were everywhere and served the same non-authentic menu.  He realised it was way too expensive and he should start making his own lunch, with tuna and mayonnaise.  He added sweetcorn as a touch of genius and was very proud of how it tasted the same as in the café.

Folding three sheets of paper and shifting his weight forward to rise so he could get a hand down, the coach reconsidered and thought about a new path. He had completely forgotten about gaming and today it seemed more a real job than ever. He sat back and checked for jobs. 

At the trough and amongst the squeals he noticed a post for a community manager at SNK. The job required some knowledge of their current games and the workings of social media.  He stopped reading.  His heart shivered as it dawned on him that this was the job for him. He ran to his documents folder, grabbed his CV and started thinking about what blagging he could get away with.

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