And another one bites the dust.

Sun-Times Media Group filed for bankruptcy today. That's the Sun-Times of Chicago Sun-Times, in case you were wondering. What does this mean? A lot of things, none of which are less than depressing. And last week the CBC announced plans to cut 800 jobs, as I’m sure you heard. And then there's this story, about the demise of the Seattle Post Intelligencer (at least in printed format). As for CanWest (and in answer to the many questions I've received) I know nothing. My feeling is that they could go any day, but I have no reason to think that. They've delayed the closing of their E! branded TV stations, or so says the buzz, but I’m not in any sort of loop. I know as much as you know. No more. Likely less.

It's not like this affects me directly. I feel for my friends, certainly. And I think this whole thing stinks and is sad, but what else can I say about it? I selfishly find myself thinking more about my own personal worries. About my own worky-woes.

The problem is moving forward. Nobody is moving forward. I, in particular, seem to be constantly moving backward. I know this is just perception, but still. It's disheartening. There's a reason "quarter-life-crisis" or "QLC" is a phrase people actually know and have (generally) stopped laughing at. I used to think this was just life in one's twenties and that it would soon pass. And that people really needed to stop whining about it (especially since the whining wasn't particularly unique.) It seemed a bit like online dating. Everyone saying they want someone who's funny and loves traveling. (DUH. Not me. I want someone with no sense of humour who loves hanging out in his underoos and scratching his fat ass.) The truth is people want someone who's hot (at least initially). Funny is icing. And they don't really love travel. They love the idea of loving travel. What they really love is nights in front of American Idol with Cherry Garcia ice cream.

This analogy doesn’t really make sense. All I’m saying is that everyone tends to say the same things and it gets really boring to hear them over and over again.

We all feel like shit to some extent. This is life, right? We all feel like we're smarter than the work we're doing and that we're not respected enough and that we don't make enough money. We all feel inadequate and adept at the same time. That's the way it goes. But according to Wikipedia (source of all things accurate), a QLC is about "feeling 'not good enough' because one can't find a job at one's academic/intellectual level; frustration with relationships, the working world, and finding a suitable career; confusion of identity; insecurity regarding both the near future and long term plans and life goals; feelings of nostalgia for school life; financially rooted stress; boredom with social interactions or loneliness; tendency to hold stronger opinions; a sense that everyone is, somehow, doing better than you."

If all that is true (in other words, if Wikipedia were Dr. Wikipedia), I am in the midst of a QLC. And so is Patty. And so is almost everyone I know.

Mother. Fucker.

This is all just perception, right? The outside world, with its judgy judgy eyes, makes it worse. I have a judgy family and some judgy friends. I see how they evaluate me. Everything is comparative. One's internal value system doesn't really matter in the face of the external machine of achievement.

Ugh.
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The thing is, I don't know anyone who really feels... pleased and calm about their accomplishments. Take Nathan, for example. (The person, not the fish.) His book is set to come out later this year. Already, if you Google him, you see alternate pre-order copies available. This is a big thing. But I don't know that he experiences it as a good thing. I don't know that he actively feels... GOOD about it. Maybe this is just a human condition problem. Like, when you were in high school you felt (or many girls felt) that your life would be better - infinitely improved - if only you had a boyfriend. That would solve everything. And then you got a boyfriend and you wanted... a better boyfriend. A different boyfriend. One who loved you more. And then you had that, and you wanted... something else. Something other people seemed to have. If only you had that, you'd be happy. That's how we think. We might try not to. (I try not to) But it's an infectious thing. A thing that hooks in and holds on in North America like nobody's business. It's hard to be better than that. It's hard to feel good.

I don't feel like I ask for a lot out of my life. Work wise, all I want is to do work that is relatively engaging, in an environment that is relatively pleasant, for a company that is generally ethical (or at least sets some sort of noticeable moral standard for itself). I've talked to people about this and they all say the same thing, more or less. They say what I feel, which is that all I want is a job that doesn't make me want to gouge my own eyes out with a rusty spoon every morning. That seems fair. Doesn't it?

DOESN’T IT?

Sigh. That's all I have to say about that.