Saturday, August 31, 2019

This Monster Commercial is not for a Depression drug. But it should be.

Monster is a resume-enhancing service which promises to make the user more attractive to potential employees- the idea is that people who use the service create resumes that are eye-catching, focus on the actual skills of the job-seeker, and avoid the worthless mulch that causes the resume scanners to give up and toss the things into the circular file cabinet.

But the little girl in this ad isn't asking about looking for a job, which can in fact be a sad, grinding, humiliating process that makes one question one's will to live.  Back in the early '90s I was working in the dairy department of an Upstate New York Wegman's while also substitute teaching and I went to dozens of interviews for a full-time teaching job which never ended with an offer of employment, and I can still remember thinking at times that I should just give up and look into the Manager Training Program at the store.  Ultimately I did manage to land a teaching position- in another state- and am celebrating my 25th year at that school this fall.  But I'll never forget the stress of resume-writing and interviews.   The little girl here is asking what it's like to WORK- and her daddy describes it as torture you just need to go through until you die.

Well, first of all, that's a really horrible message to send your daughter.  Clearly she's asking it because she regularly sees her father stumbling around in a defeated, shoulders-hunched daze looking absolutely miserable all the time, and she's at least healthy enough to know that it's not because being a FATHER is a life-sucking ordeal.  And his response is to let her know that "work" means "pain you deal with because you need money" and since everyone has to work, she should expect to graduate from childhood into her own lifetime of suffering somewhere down the road .

On some level I guess this all has to do with getting your resume in order so you can quit that job you hate and get a job you can actually enjoy, but that message kind of gets lost in this guy's horrible reply.  He clearly doesn't believe that there's any such thing as a Fulfilling, Rewarding Career- just Work.  If that's been his experience, I feel sorry for him- but he surely KNOWS of people who actually enjoy doing what they are paid to do and aren't defeated, deflated, all-suffering martyrs like himself.  He should invite one of those people to talk to his daughter about work, and keep his snarling pessimism to himself before he does lasting damage.

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