A friendly blog where feminists and their male allies can come together and discuss methods, tactics, and strategies for use in toppling White Supremacist Capitalist Patriarchy.


New Job, Etc.

I've turned in my notice. I've got one more week of working at the group home, then a few days off, then I'm off to Baltimore where I start an internship in union organizing. It's way more money. It's away from HERE. It should be good stuff. I can't wait to leave.

Last night was such an idyllic group-home night. Everybody was in a good mood, the sun was shining outside, the flowers in the group-home garden had just opened up. I cooked a really wonderful supper and everybody loved it. An inspector came, and only stayed an hour, was really impressed with the house and the environment and how happy and independent our guys are. Everything got done early.

I remember, after bathing one of the clients, I threw together the casserole-thing I was cooking and put it in the oven, then went outside to sit on the patio table and brush and braid my client's hair. The group-home kitties sat up on the table with me, two torties with bubbly personalities, and I made a gorgeous french-plait in this woman's long, blonde hair. I nearly cried, then, when I thought about leaving.

When I get to these emotional places at work, when I'm having a good time with the guys or when we're doing a project that's totally awesome and cool, or we're all working together cooking some big thing- and I want to cry, because I'm going to be walking away from all that family in a week- I think back on where I actually LIVE. I think about my mom, and how hard her life is, and I think about how I have to get to a place where I can take care of HER when she finally gets sick and starts to die. It's kinda the mental equivalent of pinching myself real hard.
I mean, to be honest, I've been acting kinda selfishly. I *could* have gotten a fucking corporate job at a collection agency, making mad money harassing people in Spanish to make their trailer payments or whatever. I could already be helping my family, but my fucking stark-as-hell principles and morality won't let me do that kinda work. The whole mess has made me look like a fool to people I love dearly- keeping this job, whose administrative ass-end I complain about all the damn time, that doesn't pay enough to let me have my own place and pay rent, forgoing other jobs that could lead to strategical political involvement or at least more money, a hand-up outta poverty.

At least what I'm gonna get paid for now is a more officially "Fight the Man"-type job. I wish that Radical Feminism had more ground-level material benefits. I'd love to find a job working for a fist-in-your-face, radical, feminist organization. But it looks like any work I do for this movement will be unpaid, at least for now.

I ain't all that bound up with money or material comfort. If you could see the place where I live now, you'd understand what I'm saying. But I gotta pay rent. There's no room for me in mama's house anymore. I work a lot, already, and it's fucking hard as hell to find time to research articles for this blog or absorb myself in feminist political work. My work schedule right now doesn't allow for political meetings. SO this is what y'all get. But hopefully that's gonna change real, real soon. I'm prickly with excitement just as much as I hate to leave the family-setting of my current workplace.

I told the inspector yesterday, who asked me why the hell I was leaving, after my boss bragged to him about my bilingualness and my college degrees- I told him I had to go somewhere where I could draw a fucking paycheck. He'd worked in the field for quite some time, so he just responded by nodding his head.

After a four-week stint in Baltimore, I head for either Atlanta or Orlando. I hope I get Orlando, mainly 'cause I never been there.

Shit! I just looked at the clock. Time to go to work! Ugh!!! I hate bloggus-interruptus. More later.


antiprincess said...

I loved being in Baltimore. BARF worked with Socialist Action and Union 1199 on some things, back in the day. I think we all got together behind one banner and demonstrated for gay marriage at one point, sometime back in like '92, and a couple times for pro-choice issues as I recall.

If you have motive/opportunity, may I suggest The Baltimore Book to give you some background on the incredibly rich union, labor and working-class history in the area. Further, if that sort of thing lights your fire, you may wish to visit the Baltimore Museum of Industry.

again, of you - totally envious.

antiprincess said...

somewhat OT - what's your take on Roxanne Dunbar?

spotted elephant said...

Good for you! Leaving that setting must be tough to swallow. But you have to be able to afford the basics. In this country, a livable wage is just a dream for way too many people.

I understand the conflict-had similar issues with my family, but you're doing great things. And it sounds like you're moving in a good direction. I hope all goes well (even when terribly excited, I find moving very painful). Please let us know what's going on as you have time.

Y. Carrington said...

Congratulations again on your new movement job in Baltimore! Hopefully I can come to see you when you get settled,especially if I'm traveling up to New York anyway.

Trying to live in this economy ain't no joke. You've worked so hard in that group home, in a highly skilled job that most folks couldn't do to save their ass, but your bosses don't respect you enough to pay a living wage. And it sounds like the people there need you.

Surprise, surprise---the most rewarding and necessary work pays next to nothing. It just makes me sick.