When people find out I work in the web publishing industry, they show vivid interest. And it's strange, because it seems that everyone nowadays is doing webpages. On my way home I pass four companies that do exactly what I do: webpages.
But I suppose it's a consequence of the Internet having become so popular (I miss the days in 94 when CoN had a total of 6 readers), and so hearing people on the bus you'd never think would have Internet access, use phrases like "I e-mailed that bitch but she still hasn't gotten back to me" while holding a kid and wearing the latest Chicago Bulls jacket, has become the norm.
I digress. It's the wired world, everyone is on Yahoo!, thousands of people are masturbating in front of pictures of golden showers and listening to the latest Mp3 craze and while the Internet has never been a centre for useful information, it's impossible to determine who has got the dumbest site.
But the stunning part of all this is the people that work behind the world of the Internet. The people that make things work, bring your connection, ensure that your e-mail is working fine and that the router is functional, and all those crazy people that work like bugs to dish out truckloads of YAWS (yet another website). And it's scary.
It's scarier than having to deal with people with AOL, because with the people you have at work, you need to interact in order to get a finished product done at least three months after the deadline. And that, sometimes, can have a detrimental effect on your liver, making alcohol look like a healthy alternative.
While in the rest of the real world one needs to be qualified to do things like working on planes, fixing cars, or building a bridge, qualifications are just fictitious in the e-world. I've worked as a systems administrator knowing nothing about networking. I've done my fair share of Flash, Director and similar, learning as I was going along. I installed phone cabling and DSL connections having no clue what the pretty coloured wires were for. But at least I put the effort into it all to learn. And I thought that was all over when I landed my latest job.
When you work in new media you find yourself surrounded by really strange people. They all look the same. To the point that you can recognize from which department they belong to just by how they dress.
Shaved head, Metallica t-shirts, piercing, strange colour combinations? They are in design. Well dressed, nicely done hair, always looking their best, latest shoes? They do flash or 3D or Director or anything that involves following a pre-determined design that needs to be put online and with no thinking of their own. Jeans, stubble, a pissed off look (mostly from trying to convince designers that what can be done in Photoshop can't always be done in HTML), sucking down coffee and cola like water and a cigarette always stuck in their mouth? Those are the programmers. Marketing and sales is the only group of people that you can't really fit anywhere.
In marketing and sales they all look different, albeit they follow the "I did take a bath recently" standard, despite their constant smell, they all have their own acceptable style. The only dead-give-away is the fact that they smile. A lot. If you walked into an e-business and looked around, the only people you'd see smiling are the bastards from marketing and sales. They smile because they just got a contract to design an entire site, with flash, asp and all the bells and promised it in a week. The smile is also caused by the fact that they live in their own little world, using words like "synergy" or "page hits" when potential clients are shown the office, because, and as we all know, clients like to see things like the boardroom.
So what do I do in here? I do writing. At least, that's what I was hired for. I was hired to spew out amusing sentences and provide that much needed entertaining content on the site I'm assigned to. But it hardly seems to work that way these days.
But it turns out that I do just about everything, from design, to coding, to animation, and next on my list is to re-build a mail server someone "competent" totally fucked. I don't mind. I've worked so many jobs already, all paying disgustingly low amounts of money, that I can wire your DSL connection, set up your server, build your web page, and put content on it.
Maybe I should just cover ALL the bases and show up naked for work.
Yes, God did indeed have a weenis.
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