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Search - "last year of school"
My most upsetting rejection come from before I got into tech.
I was working in visitor services at a a cultural institution and I was trying to transfer to a different department. A big show was about to open and we were anticipating large crowds. I was tired of the stickup rich people that made of most of our guests. Now, there would plebs would be coming in droves and they would be even more ill behaved.
I didn’t get the job and had to continue on visitor services. It was upsetting because I was trying to save myself from mental stress. I went through months of being verbally demeaned by gross visitors and had physical injuries from working the incessant crowds. Only the seasonal hires were given special gifts when the show ended and I received nothing.
I did reapply for the transfer again when the position reopened a year later. I got the job. The hiring manager admitted that he should have hired me the last time. The girl they hired left after a year because she wanted to go to grad school. They wanted someone who was going to stay longer because training and hiring takes time.
“Lazy mom lazy wow” presented by Gail Swanlund was probably the most impactful piece of art to me.
Through simplistic form, this art piece presents the idea of caring about oneself and quit the eternal rat race for money. But somehow for its metaphor, Lazy mom lazy wow chooses the notion and aesthetics of death and decay. The closest analogy I can think of is the music of American Football. Some kind of liminal, eerie aesthetics. Also, the movie Gummo and the game Life is Strange, part one.
The piece deliberately avoids being aggressive and celebrating its notion. It’s not “quit the rat race and celebrate because life is so good”, it’s “quit the rat race by putting yourself into coma so nothing matters anymore”. The descent into eternal comfort of realization that you don’t have to do anything anymore, but also sorrow of losing meaning.
It feels like launching Counter-Strike Source in the year 2051, only to walk around cs_office and realize there are no players anymore, and they will not return ever again. The sense of watching an old VHS tape of you having a conversation with your mom in the hospital as she’s counting her last days because of cancer. The sense of comfort of coming back to your hometown. You remember your childhood and your high school crush, only to realize that those moments won’t happen ever again.