I got my first job at age 16. Arby's Fast Food Restaurant. After the first day, I knew. Work sucks. I knew. I knew that employment was inherently demeaning.
The past 23 years have only confirmed and strengthened that insight. I've had crap jobs, I've had "decent" jobs. I've had one cool boss. I've had loads of shitty ones.
But always the institution itself was a prison. Always the inherent hierarchy. Always the "never left high school" feeling. Maybe I'm more sensitive than most. But employment has always meant dread and misery for me.
That is the root source of my rage-- the rage I felt upon returning to America. Once again, I was in the American economic system-- a system of wage slavery... of just getting by... a society whose sole focus is money, money, money. Money & work dominate America like nowhere else in the world, save, perhaps, Japan.
I'd spent 2 wonderful years in Thailand. 2 years without money being the central worry of my life. 2 years to live. And then I came back.
Since returning, the need for money has dominated my life. During my first few months in San Francisco, I was dangerously close to INVOLUNTARY homelessness. For the next year, it was always a struggle to have enough... enough to cover rent, food, basic living... but not much left over for anything resembling fun.
I finally saw the light and started my own micro-business. In the beginning, it brought in a little, but not enough to live off. Meanwhile, I had to work both my job AND my little micro-business. Work consumed my life.
This is why I have barely blogged during the past year and a half. What could I write? I was certainly not living the free Hobopoet life. Though teaching part time.. it was not a life of abundance and freedom.
But now.... a 23 year marathon nears its end. The goal-- freedom from wage slavery. Independent income. Financial freedom.
The micro-business is now making plenty for me to live off. It has surpassed my job income. Its generating enough to fund year-round travel.
For the moment, I'm holding my breath. I want to shout and celebrate and dance like a maniac. But I'm waiting... waiting to be sure this will continue.
I plan to work my job through the end of this summer... to be sure the micro-business stays steady.
Meanwhile, I'll be saving the extra money. Saving..... waiting just a few more months...
For Independence Day. My Independence Day. The end of wage slavery. My declaration of independence from employment. The day I quit my LAST job.
And then, there will be shouting. And dancing. And a big fucking party.
..... After that, I'm hitting the road. Not sure where, when, or how. But I'd like to see some of California and the Western US first-- do some camping and hiking. And Im thinking of a short teaser trip to Mexico. And then a BIG tour of South and Central America-- learn Spanish, learn salsa, SCUBA dive,... wander.
....And when my Independence Day comes at last, I plan to revive this blog and share the experiences and strategies that led me to it.... and the adventures that follow.
Stay tuned. And for the dedicated few readers who have stuck with this blog-- Thanks!