"Its the perfect job, I think I should go ahead and accept it. I am making the correct decision, right?" asked my more than moderately excited friend as we were munching on some popcorn at a fast food outlet during one of our regular weekend lazying around doing nothing sessions. I ignored the raised eyebrows of the people sitting next to us who suddenly started straining their ears to catch our conversation and asked my friend what makes the job so perfect.
"Well, first of all there is the work, it’s exactly what I have been wanting to do for a very long time. It’s definitely a huge step up from my current job profile and I'm sure that even though it will be challenging, I will be able to manage it rather well."
My Ok was a little more dragged out than usual which made my friend suspicious. "Plus there's all the other stuff. To be honest, saying that you are working in that company gets you a lot more respect than when you mention the name of our beloved employer. And then there are the perks"
"What perks?" I grunted while trying to chew on a mouthful of popcorn. "Well, there’s the taxi service that offers a free pick up and drop from your home and the timings are pretty flexible as well. And you don’t have to pay for anything that you want to eat within the campus. Which means that you get free fruit juice, soft drinks, chips, short eats and just about everything else. Add to that the fact that the work culture is great, you don’t need to come to office if you don’t have any work and you can hit the spacious gyms anytime you want to. The H.R team does a phenomenal job as well, they frequently organize team outings and actual fun filled sessions. Oh and then there’s the big incentive - the women there are rumoured to be prettier and smarter than in any other company. Now does that seal the deal or does that seal the deal, huh? So what do you say?"
"Don’t take it" I replied and had less than half a second to duck under the incoming popcorn that my friend spat out of his mouth in disbelief. "Bu... bu... but why?" he stammered in disbelief as more popcorn kept falling out of his mouth. Not a pretty sight to say the least.
"Its the perfect job. Hence you shouldn’t take it." Rather surprisingly he had some difficulty in comprehending what I was saying and I deliberately chewed on my popcorn in slow motion for added effect as I watched him wait for me to shed some light on the matter. Just as I was about to grab another handful he pulled the box of popcorn away and asked me to explain.
"So you join the company and you find the work is good and that the company is doing just about everything to make you happy. You know what happens if anyone is happy for too long. They get bored. That right, B.O.R.E.D. There's nothing to look forward to, is there? And what’s going to happen when you lose interest?”
In the manner of great orators I paused, waited and continued, ”You can’t switch again because you already have the perfect job. Let’s be honest, any new job will seem like a walk in the park with an obedient dog and nowhere close to challenging. You’re not going to get the same perks anywhere else and each time you put your hand into your pocket to buy lunch you will be left with the bitter taste of your memories. I will guarantee that a guy like you will end up taking vows of chastity when you realize that no longer will you be able to meet such wonderful women day in and day out. You will have to take a major pay cut as well since everyone knows that you were overpaid and underworked in your dream company. We need to get more popcorn, do you want some?”
I’m not sure why my friend suddenly wasn’t in the mood for more popcorn, I even offered to get him the one with additional butter which he was extremely fond of. I sat for a couple of minutes and pretended to be extremely interested in the menu as he closed his eyes and seemed extremely engrossed in thought. Alarmed by what seemed to have become his permanently furrowed eyebrows, I asked him to relax a little which he eventually did. “This is true for everything isn’t it? If I find the perfect woman I should drop her like a hot potato, shouldn’t I?”
“Uh-huh, you need to stay away from anything that is perfect. Once you reach there you have nothing left to achieve or look forward to. You cease to ask yourself that important question – What next? You need to strive for perfection but you should always remember that if you do find it you should never do anything to attain it. You always need something that is out there just beyond your reach. It is our pursuit of happiness that makes us happy.”
Frankly even I was astounded by the wisdom of my words. Profound! My friend, on the other hand, seemed at ease with the whole concept that I had unravelled in front of him and had a smile plastered on his face. Slowly he started muttering to himself while rocking himself back and forth. People at the next table started eyeing us with extreme suspicion and not without reason. One of us (read me) looked like he had just had a moment of revelation while the other looked like he was slowly losing it.
“Will that be all, sir” asked the waiter as he realized we were making the rest of the customers extremely uneasy.
“I’m not going to accept it.”
“What’s that sir? I was asking whether I should get the bill”
“"I’m not going to accept it. Don’t you agree?”
“Not accept the bill? I’m afraid I don’t completely understand, sir.”
“Sit down, sit down. Let me explain how it’s the perfect job and why I’d be a fool to accept it …..”