There’s this Romanian saying everybody learns in elementary school.
Work is a gold bracelet.
The metaphor confused me as a child, because I could see more than one way in which work could be associated with jewellery.
For one thing, work enabled you to go out and buy jewellery you could then show off among people with less lucrative careers.
Then, work was something to take pride in and cherish, the way I suppose people cherished their shiny bracelets and stacked diamond rings.
And I also imagined at the time that work was something only certain people, most of them somewhat sneaky, got to have and enjoy. I guess this last one had to do with the fact that in Communist Romania, way back when, gold bracelets were not particularly easy to come by. You needed connections. Pretty much the way today, in no longer Communist Romania, you need connections to get a job, any job. And I’m told most times it ends up feeling more like a heavy handcuff rather than a shiny piece of bling.
I wasn’t planning yet another oh-isn’t-Romania-super-duper-interesting post for today, but so many people seem to be panicking that I’ve moved to London to steal their jobs, that I’m actually starting to think there must be some truth in it. I guess, unknowingly, I am indeed stripping everybody of their livelihoods. I’ll have gold bracelets up to my shoulders soon enough, which will not only make me the envy of the world, but will also do wonders for my arm muscle definition.
Until then though, the only piece of bling I’m wearing today is my office id card. It’s plastic but my photo is in plain sight and if you look closely, you can clearly read it in my sneaky eyes. I’m a professional job thief.