Beggars can’t be choosers?

Have you ever felt why you are here facing the ugly realities of life, enduring insults right in front of you after you are invited? I have, and the experience is still so fresh that if I don’t manifest it in writing, the grief will knit up the overwrought heart and bid it shatter to pieces, which has already been cracked, broken, then repeated. Job interviews are arguably the most tricky and adrenaline-inducing passage of livelihood for which some introverts have to give in at the expense of our fairy-like stealth, Sanity. You can either win or lose at the impression on the interviewer, who is more often than not less cultivated, let alone understanding humanity, no matter the social status. But then, you should not let your dignity and Sanity be ripped off or broken apart because you deserve a good one.

It all started when I got first called in for a zoom interview last Thursday. It was for the position of part-time legal assistant at a small family law office in Downtown Los Angeles (not to be confused with Downtown Abbey, LOL). The office proprietor, an old man lawyer, was a typical lawyer who must have inspired Shakespeare to exclaim, “Kill all the lawyers!” It was not so much a job interview as an immigration or any bureaucratic interview, I gather, because of the following: 

(1) His question of whether I had any family member or friend with divorce experience is irrelevant, knowing that I had no experience in divorce law. When I said no, he cast a doubtful glance at me;

(2) After the zoom interview, what was the need for a second interview in the office for a part-time position in such a small law office?; 

(3) I referred him to my blog as writing samples at his request, but he never gave me feedback on them;

The interview reminded me of a police interrogation I am familiar with by watching British and American procedural detective TV dramas. He questioned me and observed my facial expressions to find faults. He was cross-examining me with the questions he had already concocted in his petty lawyer mind and insulted my sensitivity. He seemed to be of a typical victorian/Edwardian bourgeoise (not even peerage) would-be employer pleased with himself for being so rich, so successful by his so clever lawyering. 

I am seeking employment to make a living, but I don’t want to work for/under such a rude and unpleasant employer. I wasted my time on earth because of yet another traumatic experience of failing humanity. What change has been improved since the labor movements in the tacit relationship between the worker and the employer when I cannot speak my mind because ignoring it in the oblivious land of forced amnesia will make me fall apart, and I can’t take it anymore? And it didn’t end on that day. He dared to inform me of my not being hired the next day at NIGHT. Thank God for not giving me the job. And I wish it was all just a nightmare, and that’s all.

the sentence

Order tends toward disorder. Chaos stalks feeble efforts. Normal is not default, and sadness is nature. I see it all as a gift of the fates that I have to grin and bear with stoic charm like a Sisyphus rolling up the boulder on a hill in Hades. So much so for the morning’s episode that shadows the day’s remains.

I had to cancel my counseling appointment for tomorrow at 7:00 pm due to training at my new prospective job after work. Should I have rescheduled it instead of canceling? Anyway, the counselor could have asked about such an option if she had been a caring and considerate licensed listener. Writing usually shows a person’s character, however brief it is, as proven by my text communication with her earlier today. Her response was curt and short with a timbre of haste, artful courtesy of an empty reply to her client. I know it because of my divine ability to look through people’s psyche by the mode of speech, writing, or twitching facial muscles. Depending on how you look at it, you can call it a blessing or cursing, but I call it nature. For what’s worth, my extrasensory perception tells me that it’s high time that I prepared a slow parting with her with the pain of disappointment and resentment for betrayal.

In retrospect, she has never provided me her feedback on my mental state since the onset of counseling sessions. Once I had asked her opinion, she was obliged to tell me reluctantly that I had traumas due to an unfavorable family environment, interacting with lots of missed lucky opportunities and debauched aspirations. Then was heard no more. My understanding of counseling is active communication with constructive feedback about the client’s mental state and what to do. However, she only listened, smiled, said goodbye, and continued. Although my heart is weeping for the loss of paid listener whom I could turn to for talks, sorrow will dissipate into the currents of time. Goodbye to you, Ms. A____. I may see and talk to you again, but my spirit will not welcome you again with all my heart and all my mind.

TikTok, the Orphaned Marmoset’s Story

TikTok rescued from a miserable life courtesy of BBC.

Whether it is my animal zodiac sign of Tiger that is believed to be highly incompatible with anyone with that of monkey, let me just clarify that monkeys are my least favorite animals. However, that doesn’t mean that I should not feel strongly about the article from a recent issue of BBC Wildlife about the U.K.’s primate trade accompanied by the title photo of the baby marmoset named TikTok. Call it milk of human kindness. I cannot just leave the pages closed and forget about it as a piece of memory. The images and words still haunt me, which prompts an enduring reckoning, resulting in writing this essay.

The primate trade in the U.K. and here in the States evokes the human history of slavery. Under slavery, human lives were counted as chattel, and the families were continuously disintegrated because of volatile trade-offs. On the same token, keeping primates as pets seems no less different from colonialists or slave owners whose eyes were set upon the exotic physical attributes of the people they subordinated.

The article has also taken me to my brief research into the U.S. primate trade with the following facts: in 2012, 19 states, including California, where I live, had outright bans on private monkey ownership. The primates are considered a threat to wildlife and public safety and health because their habitats and nature are not agreeable to our environment despite our conventional knowledge of primates as the closest to our species lost in the evolution tree. Come to think of it, the idea of “Planet of Apes” has a point in reversing the directions of gaze from humans to apes, and vice versa, showing us why the two species could not cohabitate by confining them in the opposite environments.

We should not think of animals as live toys or ornaments that will satisfy our whimsical, capricious tastes. From pets to wildlife, animals are not our property but companions. I know it for sure when I feel a little heart of my cat Toro sleeping at my feet.