Friday, April 27, 2007


Lately work has been an absolute nightmare. I feel like I can hardly keep up with the load. There is a hell of a lot on my plate at the moment and I can feel the stress building up and taking over my brain. I am on constant high alert with my nerves permanently switched to 'electric' mode. I might even have to gulp..go in on the weekend to ease the strain - but I'm still deciding on whether or not I should even open that can of worms until I really have to. You see I have a policy on weekends and going in to work. The policy basically goes something like this; hell no.

No, I will never be one of those people that will happily give up a weekend to slave away at the grind stone. I will do it when absolutely desperate - like if I feel like I'm about to lose my job. But that's it.

No, I'm not THAT driven by my career.

And no, I don't believe it's being a better worker to do so. I think it's sad and plebby and a product of a society that wants more productivity at the expense of relaxing and family time. And you know what? I don't think if there was extra money involved it'd even be worth it. I pick me time over money any day. Is that weird?

Now I realise that there are many people who not only will give up many weekends because they have to, but will do so quite often because they want to. I'm not talking about people who work weekend jobs here to make the ends meet. I mean people who earn enough money Monday to Friday and go in on the weekend to get things done without explicitly being asked to go into work on the weekend. These are the kind of people that sorry to say I just don't understand very well. I mean, you want to do what? Go in to work? Are you ill? Are you taking prescription medication? WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU? Even God had a day off! To be fair, they don't understand me very well either. Maybe these people are actually paid their worth so weekends are part of the global work contract. Maybe they are really driven and define themselves first in terms of their career. Or maybe just maybe they HAVE to do it. In any case - the kinds of bosses that demand weekend work can fuck right off. It's your company buster - YOU get it done.

And that brings me to the exceptions for acceptable weekend work: 1) It's your company and you're getting it done. 2) You're working towards saving the world/humanity in some way. 3) extra money that will literally pay for food on the table and electricity to cook it.

Maybe this makes me fickle or petty. I don't know. I just feel like I already live and breathe this job. At the end of each and every day I'm mentally and physically exhausted. I look forward to weekends so much. I constantly think about work so I need a break from actually physically being there. I guess because I do work on the weekend anyway, even if it's planning for a lesson. I resent giving up the physical freedom of not being in "the office" on my weekend though.

I guess that's a big issue with teaching. It's actually two jobs but you only get paid for half. There's the bit you do with the kids and then there's the zillion pounds of administration that goes along with it. I would put the administration part, dealing with parents, organising other things outside the classroom, reports, portfolios, displays etc etc. The admin part you simply cannot do at the same time as you are actually teaching - so you do it in your spare time. In teaching ironically, you need time without the kids around in order to get all those 'expectations' done.

So, I'm sitting here thinking about these things while nursing my bum knee (I have no idea what I've done to it. I seriously think I did something in my sleep of all places) and wondering how I can so strongly believe that voluntarily working on weekends is one of the stupidest, dumbest, plebbiest and pathetic thing a person can do. But, having said that I'm about 80% sure I'll be there on Sunday.


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