Rat race

Lately, when talking to people here in NL, the image of a hamster frantically running around in it’s treadmill has been popping up in my mind a lot. Together with the term rat race. Because I actually didn’t know the exact definition of a rat race, I decided to look it up in Wikipedia:

A rat race is a term used for an endless, self-defeating or pointless pursuit. It conjures up the image of the futile efforts of a lab rat trying to escape whilst running around a maze or in a wheel. In an analogy to the modern city, many rats in a single maze run around making a lot of noise bumping into each other, but ultimately achieve nothing (meaningful) either collectively or individually.

And this quote:

The trouble with the rat race is that even if you win, you’re still a rat

I really don’t want to offend any of my friends by saying I think they are engaging in something endless, pointless and self-defeating, nor do I want to suggest that I myself have never fallen prey to rat race-like behaviour. In fact, I don’t think there is anything wrong with joining the rat race at all, as long as you are enjoying it. And this is where (in my eyes) things go wrong. I think a lot of people got sucked into it and now feel like they are stuck, and like they would have to give up on too much (i.e. money, status, security) if they would step out of it.
From what I’ve read, hamsters do enjoy running around in their treadmill, so I guess I am trying to say that I think we should be more like hamsters, less like rats. At least, I hope I will be.

In the meantime I am still job-hunting. I have such a great feeling for timing, coming back to look for work just as the crisis starts to take effect! One thing I’ve decided though, is that I’d much rather work in a nice little café (like my sweet Creme Anglaise in Woollahra), than in some sort of boring office job where I still don’t have to use my brain (although figuring out some coffee machines can be quite tough). But of course ideally I’d like a well-paid, interesting and challenging job, with funny and friendly colleagues, you know, the ones that are the hamster kind.

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