Saturday, 13 February 2010

I don't care too much for fancy titles

I'm reading a book called "The Blue-Eyed Salaryman" at the moment. It's about a guy who travelled a lot, then decided to get a career in a Japanese multinational. Those of you familiar with the Japanese work ethic will realise this is a huge transition from travelling the world as a free agent. The book has some good, or at least thought-provoking quotes in it, such as these (adapted for tense / person etc):

"set off for a year of living free while [you] have the chance, because you only get the chance once and there [will] be plenty of years for a normal, everyday job later"

"when I get letters from far away I sometimes ask myself what I'm doing here. I'm free to leave anytime, go anywhere, am I not? But I'm not free. I've started something here. I want to see it through."

"Collect those fond memories of a carefree youth, something to look back on when life gets serious, because if you've nothing to look back on, then what've you got?"

"I don't care much for fancy titles and I'm worried that [they] might tie me down. I don't want to build my life around a piece of paper. Still, I have to get a job in the conventional world sometime."

Observant readers will notice that the title of this post is taken from the last quote. It was a pun - as a post title it implies that I don't care too much for fancy titles in my blog, whereas in the book he is referring to titles such as PhD and similar.

I put these quotes up because they seem quite relevant at the moment - they deal with wondering why you're slaving away at something when you could be elsewhere, something that's on my mind at the moment (Canada). They deal with seeing things through - something I'm trying to do at the moment despite things trying to distract me. I'm not sure about the third one - I don't like the idea that the only thing we have to hold onto are memories of the past, but I agree with the sentiment that we should collect fond memories as we go.

A fairly disjointed post here unfortunately. Perhaps you see where I'm coming from, perhaps not, but either way it's an interesting book and I'll probably write more about it sometime soon.

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