Men Not at Work

men_not_working

I’ve seen the signs on the highway and around construction sites: “Men at Work.” There was even an Australian rock band in the early 80’s called Men at Work. But according to an article I read in “Time” magazine recently, men actually aren’t at work. Not that they can’t work, these are men who just won’t work. We aren’t talking about just a handful either. One in seven men between the ages of 25 to 54 — the prime earning years — are now making the choice not to work. Uh, when did this become okay?

According to Nicholas Eberstadt, a guy who actually does work because he wrote a whole book on the subject of guys who don’t work, there are more men checking out of the workforce now than at the end of the Great Depression. See what happens when you make it okay to wear pajama pants in public – you forget how to pull up your big boy pants (that have belt loops and cover your butt) and get a job.

It’s not even that these men can’t find jobs, they aren’t bothering to look. And the epidemic seems to be infecting these men fairly universally. It’s not just limited because of education, skills or job availability. Nope, seems like professional, blue-collar, and unskilled men of every race are thinking it’s perpetually Miller Time.

But hey, guess what? Women are working. Even older guys (who actually grew up with some kind of work ethic) are working. Generation X, though, has no desire to get off their lazy duffs, so instead are living off of their wives, girlfriends or family. Okay, ladies, look around your house. Televisions and computers are common hiding spots. If you have one of these free-loaders lying around, hit the eject button. If necessary, make an appointment to have the couch surgically removed. Your government mandated health care probably won’t cover that expense, but pay it anyway. It’ll be worth it in the long run.

Honestly, my saintly old grandmother would call these guys “bums.” I’d probably agree if I weren’t so busy earning an honest living and paying into the tax base. However, if you happen to be one of these guys, let me point out that there are newspapers and websites that publish “Help Wanted” ads. You’ve this far in, why not head on over and check those out? Oh, and by the way, you probably need a haircut, too.

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