Get a “Real” Job

Waste of time...? What's on your walls?

Waste of time…? What’s on your walls?

Remember Fraggle Rock? I loved Fraggle Rock.

Remember the Doozers, the little construction people that made these inexplicable structures that the Fraggles found tasty, but they didn’t mind because it gave them an excuse to build some more? There was one episode that I’ll never forget – a Doozer who didn’t want to build. Cotterpin was a dissatisfied Doozer who actually hated building and preferred to draw. She became an outcast, publicly shamed, but instead of giving in, she ran away.

Turned out she was an architect.

When you’re shopping for new clothes, how do you think they get there in the first place? When you step into your car, sit on your couch, or drink from your glass, how do you think that happened? Someone designed that shirt. Someone designed up that car. Someone designed that couch, that table, those dishes, that stop sign, that jewelry, your home, your wallet, your shoes, your computer…

But, that’s not a “real” job, see?

real jobA “real” job, by most standards is to sell, trade, and serve what is already manifested. A “real” job is having a schedule that someone else tells you you need to keep “or else.” A “real” job is to collect a paycheck for work that you are mandated to do. A “real” job is safe, predictable, but somehow coming up with the idea for that job in the first place isn’t “real.” Having an original thought and taking risks to bring it to the public isn’t “real.” And certainly providing anything seemingly impractical isn’t “real.”

And yet the same people who tell you to grow up and get a “real” job are the same people who listen to music, go to the theater, collect books, read tabloids, watch television, stream Netflix, follow commercials, give greeting cards, and buy fashion.

How much do you think that instrument costs? Give you a hint...more than your shoes.

How much do you think that instrument costs? Give you a hint…more than your shoes.

Where do you think that music comes from? How do you think that song happened? Guess what, that tune that affects you emotionally, physically, and spiritually was performed by someone who didn’t have a “real” job but spent hours and hours learning their instrument after spending thousands of dollars on equipment in order to manifest and preserve their work for you. That tune that you don’t want to spend a lousy .99 cents on cost more than your mortgage to make.

Heavy metal polka band, Kranken Welpen at work... Studio time: $100 per hr Equipment: $3500 Practice hours: immeasurable Download Song: .99 cents Royalties: .60 cents

Band (Kranken Welpen) at work.
Studio time: $100 per hr
Equipment: $3500
Practice hours: immeasurable
Download Song: .99 cents
Royalties: .60 cents

How do you think that stained glass got in your church’s windows?


I wonder if anyone told ol’ Ben Franklin to quit playing with kites and get a “real” job?

And writing…writing’s not a “real” job? When was the last time you read anything? When was the last time you got the news, saw a clever meme on Facebook that you “liked,” or watched a movie? Where do you think those lines came from? How do you think the actors learned what to say? Someone spent hours and hours sitting with notes and looking up resources, honing and crafting those words together so you can escape your reality, get caught up with the world, or so you can find out what’s going on with that cute celebrity you’re hot for. Someone took hours and hours to find the information that you need in order to become better enlightened about the things that matter to you. How long do you think it takes to write a novel, an encyclopedia entry, or an article? What do you think that kind of effort and getting carpel tunnel is worth in an hourly wage?

wedding-gown-sewing-pattern-194804112013_00003Who do you think makes your clothes and homes look pretty? Who do you think makes things provocative?  Who do you think makes everything around you what it is and gives the salespeople something to sell and servers something to serve?  Who put the wonder in your wonderland theme parks or the “bop” in the bop shoo bop shoo bop?

Well, rama-lama ding this — Here’s what’s “real”: Everything you do, say, use, see, and experience in your life every day starts with an idea. That’s “real.” Everything you wear, hear, feel, and taste starts with someone’s work. That’s “real.” And everyone who comes up with those ideas and makes them happen for you need to eat, too and that is very, very fucking “real.”

So, don’t tell me I need to find a “real” job. You want to know what a “real” job is? Making your life real.

Now, could you please…pay up!

keep the artist


About T. Ray

Writer, visual artist, student, musician, and "armchair nutritionist." She currently resides in Vegas with her jenday conure and two beloved rescue cockatoos. She is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and the National Society of Leadership and Success (Sigma Alpha Pi). While pursuing her degree in Journalism/Media Studies at UNLV, she continues to contend that all things come down to food and Star Wars. Contact:
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