Let’s first segregate the above phrase in four parts:

An – The article

underpaid – deserves more or at least wants to get more

Corporate – relating to a corporation or an organization

Slut – I think you know what I am talking about here. Else, go ask your Mum, maybe she’ll explain it to you with crayons.

Now with that out-of-the-way, I am going to use the acronym CS for the Corporate Slut for the following two reasons:

That’s what I saw some other blogger do, it looked professional.

So that this post doesn’t get banned for using the word slut too many times.

What is a CS?

Just combine these two words together: a person who engages in a work for payment irrespective of his/her interest in it. A CS is just a generic version of Slut.

What does a CS do?

A CS is any corporate person in a suit who complains that he is not earning enough, but keeps doing it, taking pills every single day thinking it makes him more productive.

A CS is any truck driver who complains about the load of the truck, the police bothering him, but keeps on doing the job for a few packs of “Pataka Bidi 555” and/or a Pahua.

A CS is any house-wife who keeps on watching the same soap-operas, doing dishes every day, at the cost of some hobby/interest she used to pursue before marriage.

A CS is any retired Army person who keeps telling the same war stories to everyone while working as some security personnel for a corporate organization.

A CS is any human who keeps doing his job as a child, as a sibling, as a friend, as a lover, as a parent, as a social being at the cost of his life.

Everyone is a CS to some extent at some time in their life.

And of course, a CS thinks that it’s just a phase which will pass and that this is just for some money or some experience; that maybe true but it may also be other way round. A habit takes only 30 days to break and also to develop.

Why does someone become a CS? 

At the very core it’s answer is:

because that’s what people do, 

because that’s what we hear people do,

because that’s what people tell us to do,

And it’s not like there aren’t any other options, but that’s the beauty of it, you never want to become a CS, in fact you don’t even know when you signed up for that job, most of the times you are just in the middle of it when you realize that you have not only become a CS, but also a pro one.

And we also have a fancy term for the phase of ‘realization of being a CS’ – ‘Mid’-life Identity Crisis. Now this ‘mid’ comes at different times to different people because people are different and that’s why all generalizations about people are false including this one.

It’s a beautiful concept on it’s own that how when you are just in the middle of something and realize that ‘what has happened before’ and ‘whatever is coming’, just doesn’t add up.

Why does someone continue being a CS?

Most of the CSs are lured with a free/paid internship or a training on “What is it like being a CS?” And only the best parts, most notably the sexy parts, the entertainment and the energy to do something ‘they’ want you to do, are advertised.

And if these are not enough, then with time most people are stuck into things like Loan(s) or Marriage(s) or because of some cute little versions of themselves that they created and for their sake they just get used to it.

But again, this same argument explains it better, it’s different for different people because people are different and that’s why all generalizations about people are false including this one.

What does a CS really want to do?

A CS wants exactly what everyone wants

The same thing, that Osama wants

The same thing, that Obama wants

The same thing, that Lama wants

The same thing, that Brahma wants(if you are into those types of things)

A CS wants to change the world, to make an impact, to be valuable in some way and sometimes just a good night’s sleep.

I am pretty sure Bin Laden had a better sleep on 9th September 2001 than a CS’s any average night’s sleep.

But as simple as it may sound, that is not an easy thing to do, especially not in the most fucked up world, which already has so many ‘problems’. Just pick one and start. Maybe its just that simple.

And CS are also known to construct some foolish psychological constructs e.g:- they somehow happen to know from within for sure, that even if they did everything “right”, time is eventually going to run out and then you’re gonna kick off before you even get halfway through, for which history is our proof. e.g:-

What happened to Disney when Walt Disney died,

What happened to Ford when Ford left,

What happened to HP after its founders left, 

What happened to Apple in 1980s when Jobs left and some may also argue what is happening to it right now after his death.

I’ve met many CSs and they seem to be “happy” even with everything above. What about them?

Well, good for them. But the word ‘satisfied’ still sounds better than ‘happy’.

How do u know that they are not satisfied? How do u know that they are just pretending to be happy? Maybe they like being a CS. Maybe they are satisfied by the fact that they have successfully been able to minimize the amount of problems in their lives and the people who depend on them and they have got no worries about their present or future… or maybe they enjoy being a CS, like it’s in their nature.

Well, then this is not about you guys. Good Luck with everything. Keep on doing that. Not to mention that I am a little bit jealous from your all ‘satisfied’ job, all ‘happy’ life with no worries about present and future. Meet me and teach me how to do that.

I am a big time CS. How can I get out of it?

If you could relate to everything above, I think you can pretty easily answer this question.

Hint: Answer is in the question. Get out of it. There is no tricky answer to this. There is no shortcut here. 

A BONUS question for a country like India:

How can I make my Parents/Friends/ Wife/Children understand all this without using the word ‘slut’?

Yes, actually this is the one with the tricky part. Let’s do this from three completely different perspectives and divide everyone alive in India in three loose categories and try to make some sense of all of it:

  1. Freedom Fighters
  2. Post-Independence Kids
  3. Hippies

Now, you must be aware of one of the three national holidays of our nation, the one we proudly call, ‘The Independence Day’. Now if you are someone who was born in the 1930s then you would have probably seen some terribly bad shit and have lived in quite shitty situations (or that’s what they tell us when asked about their time). That means they were in their 20s when our country got Independence. That means when they were confronted with the question, “What career do you prefer?” 

They were like this, “I would do anything, I just don’t want to die.” 

After few years or so it became something like: “I would do anything, I just don’t want to be hungry.”

Then after things started to cool down (although there were some wars but they’ll keep on happening in the near future as well and won’t impact much on the point I am trying to make), Freedom Fighters started to settle down and have kids, who were the Post-Independence Kids. So, these Post Independence kids were raised by a generation of Freedom Fighters with their Mindset and Philosophy.

Now, if you were one of those Post Independence Kids that means that you probably had a childhood hearing true and sometimes even dark tales from the Freedom Fighters or their parents. 

And when they were confronted with the question “What career should you choose?”

Their mind worked like this, ” I would do anything, I just want a secure job.”

After 20 years or so it became like this, ” I would do anything, I just want a good lifestyle.”

And then, these Post Independence Kids married and settled down and have kids, let’s call those kids Hippies at least for the sake of symbolism. So, if you were one of those generations of 80s-90s, that means you would have very recently encountered this question, “What career should I choose?”

Above generalizations about the thinking process of people of 50-60s and 80-90s might not be completely correct but what is 100% true is that the perspective shifted somewhat like that.

And remember, this is important, you Hippies were raised by the Philosophy of Post-Independence kids which were in turn raised by the Philosophy of Freedom Fighters.

Now when people give advice to you, their reason and logic is based on something that they have experienced few decades ago, which was in turn approved by the reason and logic of a few decades even further. They may advise you to find a job in government sector that also has a retirement plan, and most probably also an insurance plan, for your family if you die, too. You see what happened over there, you just died, like your life literally ended. And the best part: Post Independence Kids and Freedom Fighters are totally right in giving their advice. Show them that you are also not wrong.

So, maybe you thought that you had your whole life to follow some crazy dream of yours, but instead here’s what happened:

you are 20: start preparing for government jobs/ tests or something.

you are 30: get one of the job and get married.

you are 58: get retired and wait for the death and diseases and the suffering coming your way.

And most definitely there is no right or wrong here. But, that life is a very limited life. And it’s not like that we have to worry about a war that is going on in Kashmir, or the economy will go down and you’ll be broke… No, we are living in the most peaceful era of in the history that we know off. There have been reduced number of wars, reduced no. of terrorist groups, and people are becoming happier and healthier on a larger scale.(reference in the dubli-do)

So all I am saying is that you can experiment a little bit with the question: “What career should I choose?”

Last but not the least, I am not the first one to say this thing. Steve Jobs said something like this once:

“When you grow up you tend to get told that the world is the way it is and your life is just to live your life inside the world. Try not to bash into the walls too much. Try to have a nice family life, have fun, save a little money. That’s a very limited life. Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact: Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you. And you can change it, you can influence it… Once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again.”

And I certainly hope I won’t be the last.

References:

TED Talk on “BEST stats you’ve ever seen”:

https://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_shows_the_best_stats_you_ve_ever_seen?language=en?utm_source=tedcomshare&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=tedspread

Some other good stuff on Generation thing:

http://waitbutwhy.com/2013/09/why-generation-y-yuppies-are-unhappy.html