I am officially old. This post is first and foremost a pity party as well as a trip down nostalgia lane, harkening back to a more innocent era – the early 1980s before our lives were ruined first by the fax machine, then by the cellphone, and finally by the Internet (and yes I do see the irony as I “type” this on my iPhone at 3am from my bed).
Back in the early 80s people worked hard and long hours but they weren’t wholly owned and operated by their boss. There was no expectation that anything would happen overnight after everyone had left the office. Any message left on the answering machine (gasp) would be retrieved in the morning and dealt with. Maybe the boss dictated a new tape overnight but even that would have to wait for attention until he delivered it first thing in the morning.
Now we eat, sleep, and breathe via our personal hand held device and as such there is NO escaping the bossman. He knows he can reach us at any time, and over the last 30 years personal time, family time, has eroded into nonexistence, as bossman has come to expect instant gratification of whatever request he makes.
The current economic situation has only made this worse as bossman now knows we live in mortal fear of losing the hand that feeds us, so he feels more freedom in increasing his wildly unrealistic demands. There are, afterall, plenty of people waiting in the wings to take your place should you ever try to assert your right to eat or sleep away from the office.
And with this rant, I officially join the ranks of the angry, old, curmudgeon, longing for a simpler time when a family could eat dinner together and help the kids with their homework before bed, and bossman actually saw merit in that.