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Every Job is Like Riding a Hamster Wheel

Written By Michael Ferrara

Created on 2023-04-17 16:39

Published on 2023-04-18 16:08

We're all just hamsters on a wheel, you see, spinning round and round, in endless harmony.

Coffee chats and break room tales we share, chasing dreams and progress but running nowhere.

Introduction: The Hamster Wheel of Life

Have you ever watched a hamster running on its wheels? It's funny, isn't it? The little guy runs round and round, running his tiny heart out, but never getting anywhere. Well, folks, I've concluded that every job is like riding a hamster on wheels. That's right, whether you're a CEO, a barista, or anything in between, we're all just hamsters on wheels. And I'll tell you what - it's just as hilarious as it sounds.

The "Hamster Wheel" Effect: Running in Circles

Now, if you've ever had a job, and I'm assuming you have, you'll know what I mean when I say it feels like you're just spinning your wheels. You wake up in the morning, get dressed, commute to work, and then... you just keep going. And going. And going. Until it's time to go home and do it all over again the next day. It's like we're running on a giant hamster wheel, trying to reach some elusive goal, but never quite getting there.

Common Workplace Scenarios: The Great Hamster Circus

Ah, the workplace. A veritable treasure trove of comedic material. Let's take a look at some of the classic scenarios that make our jobs feel like we're part of some great hamster circus.

Emails: The Hamster Wheel in Your Inbox

You know what I'm talking about - the never-ending email inbox. You spend hours crafting the perfect response, only to have another email pop up as soon as you hit send. It's like playing Whac-A-Mole, but with a keyboard. And don't get me started on the reply-all fiascos. One wrong click and suddenly you've got 20 new emails from people you didn't even know worked at your company.

Meetings About Meetings: The Hamster Wheel of Productivity

Have you ever had a meeting to plan for another meeting? It's like putting a hamster wheel inside another hamster wheel. And for what? To discuss how we can be more productive? Ironic, isn't it? It's like a snake eating its own tail. A never-ending loop of talking about talking.

The Break Room Chronicles: The Hamster Wheel of Socialization

Ah, the break room - the place where coworkers gather to refuel and exchange pleasantries. The shared refrigerator becomes a battleground where passive-aggressive notes are exchanged like gunfire. "Who ate my yogurt? It had my name on it!" You'd think we could have figured out a better system by now.  And then there are the coffee machine conversations - where you can learn everything from the weather forecast to intimate details about someone's weekend plans. It's a strange place, the break room - a tiny oasis in the midst of the great hamster wheel of work.

The Workplace Characters: Hamsters in Human Clothing

Every office has its cast of characters - the people who make our jobs both more entertaining and more frustrating. Let's meet a few of them, shall we?

The Over-Enthusiastic Coworker: The Energizer Hamster

You know the one - the coworker who's always ready for the next big project. They're the first to volunteer for a new task and the last to leave the office. It's like they're running on a hamster wheel powered by espresso and blind ambition. How do they do it? And more importantly, why?

The Office Gossip: The Hamster Whisperer

Ah, the office gossip - the person who knows everyone's business and can't wait to tell you all about it. They're like the hamster whisperer, collecting tidbits of information and passing them along like gossip currency. You may not want to hear about Karen from accounting's latest dating escapade, but you'll know about it anyway. It's like they have their own hamster wheel of drama, spinning out of control with each new revelation.

The Boss Who's Never Around: The Ghost Hamster

Then there's the boss who's never around. They're like ghost hamsters, always "in a meeting" or "on a call." When you do catch a glimpse of them, it's like spotting a rare species in the wild. And somehow, they've mastered the art of delegation and avoiding responsibility. It's a skill, really. But, hey, even ghost hamsters have to ride the wheel, right?

The Illusion of Progress: The Great Hamster Race

We all have those moments when we feel like we're making progress - like we're finally gaining some ground on our hamster wheel. But, more often than not, it's just an illusion.

Busy Work: The Hamster Wheel of False Accomplishment

We've all been there - tasks that take up all our time but accomplish very little. It's like we're running on a hamster wheel greased with futility. We may feel like we're doing something meaningful, but we're just spinning our wheels.

Promotions and New Responsibilities: The Hamster Wheel Escalator

There's nothing like a promotion or a new responsibility to make you feel like you're finally getting somewhere. But, more often than not, it's just a hamster wheel on an escalator. Sure, you're moving up, but you're still running in circles. It's the mirage of progress, shimmering in the distance but never within reach.

The Silver Lining: Finding Humor on the Hamster Wheel

Despite the absurdity of our daily work lives, there's still plenty to laugh about. It's important to find humor in the mundane and recognize the absurdity of it all.

Camaraderie: Hamsters Unite!

One of the best things about being stuck on a hamster wheel is the camaraderie of shared experience. We're all in this together, folks - running our little hearts out, day after day. So why not laugh about it?

The Small Victories: Celebrating Every Spin

Sometimes, the best way to cope with the hamster wheel of work is to find joy in the small victories - that perfectly crafted email, a successful meeting, or even just making it through another day. It may not be much, but it's something to celebrate.

Conclusion: Embracing Our Inner Hamster

So there you have it, folks. We're all just hamsters on wheels, trying our best to get by. But, hey, it's not all bad. We've got our break room dramas, office gossip, and coffee machine conversations to keep us entertained. And we've got each other - our fellow hamsters, running alongside us on this crazy, spinning wheel of life. So let's embrace our inner hamster, laugh at the absurdity of it all, and keep running. Because, really, what else can we do?

The Joy of Work: Dilbert's Guide to Finding Happiness at the Expense of Your Co-Workers by Scott Adams is available in paperback form.

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About Tech Topics

Tech Topics is a newsletter with a focus on contemporary challenges and innovations in the workplace and the broader world of technology. Produced by Boston-based Conceptual Technology (, the articles explore various aspects of professional life, including workplace dynamics, evolving technological trends, job satisfaction, diversity and discrimination issues, and cybersecurity challenges. These themes reflect a keen interest in understanding and navigating the complexities of modern work environments and the ever-changing landscape of technology.

Tech Topics offers a multi-faceted view of the challenges and opportunities at the intersection of technology, work, and life. It prompts readers to think critically about how they interact with technology, both as professionals and as individuals. The publication encourages a holistic approach to understanding these challenges, emphasizing the need for balance, inclusivity, and sustainability in our rapidly changing world. As we navigate this landscape, the insights provided by these articles can serve as valuable guides in our quest to harmonize technology with the human experience.