The Job Creator Rises at Dawn
By Evan Waite and River Clegg
The Job Creator rises at dawn. He wears pajamas—expensive silken ones. Graying at the temples, he beholds the view from his penthouse suite and takes a sip of coffee. The coffee is also expensive, having been grown in delicious soil. The Job Creator looks out over his vast dominion. The Job Creator smiles.
“What jobs shall I create today?” he says, aloud, to no one. “Perhaps a job at which your co-workers get you a cake on your birthday. Yes! But they buy the cake at Stop & Shop, and it is a sad cake.”
The Job Creator says it, and it is so.
Creating this job has made the Job Creator hungry. He orders a mushroom omelette from room service, and, when it arrives, the Job Creator once again smiles. “I’ve realized something!” he exclaims, delighted. “Omelette-delivery ladyis a mini-job that I have just now created!”
“Pardon?” the woman who delivered his omelette says.
“Apologies—I forgot you were standing there,” the Job Creator replies, sliding a hundred-dollar bill into her palm. “Please give me ninety-nine back.”
The Job Creator sits in a chair made from the leather of a very good cow. He proceeds to read the business section of the Wall Street Journal, pursing his lips and uttering “hmm” a lot. These are the mouth-sounds of job creation.
The omelette is still sitting there. The Job Creator takes a bite, but it has grown cold. “This will not do,” he mutters, shaking his head. The Job Creator places a call to management and demands that the omelette-delivery lady be fired. Though he is a benevolent Job Creator, when pushed, he can become a merciless Job Destroyer.
The Job Creator enters his closet, which is the size of ten ordinary closets. Cufflinks and loafers abound. The Job Creator thumbs the lapel of a blazer made by Ralph Lauren—not the brand but the actual man. “It was a pleasure creating this blazer-making job for Ralph,” he declares and dons the garment.
Clothed, he descends to the sidewalk and summons an Uber, his regular driver having taken the day off for something called “sick wife.” The Job Creator refuses to use Uber’s Pool option, for he knows that creating a half job is worse than creating no job at all. Plus he tried it once, and the other passenger was smelly.
“Thank you for the ride, and for not speaking to me during it,” the Job Creator says, upon reaching his office building. “Not a big fan of the chitchat.”
The Job Creator sits at his desk in a chair made from the leather of an excellent cow. He wonders if the office-chair cow and the penthouse-chair cow knew each other.
“Excuse me, sir?” An intern has been standing before the Job Creator for some time. “You wanted to see me?” The intern’s untucked shirt and visible tattoos repulse the Job Creator.
“College credit is not currency, yet it’s still far better than you deserve!” the Job Creator shouts, pounding his desk so violently that the framed picture of his four-year-old daughter, whose joblessness disappoints him daily, clatters to the floor. “You are nothing! Also, please ask Cheryl if she needs help with the expense reports.”
“Yes, sir.” The intern leaves, and the Job Creator opens the spreadsheet where he keeps track of the jobs he’s created. “Splendid!” he cries out, noticing that most of his employees are now working second jobs. “That’s double the job creation! I’ve earned this.” He lights a Cuban cigar just to watch it burn.
The Job Creator is happy. Happy because he has a job, which is to create more jobs. He can’t help but wonder: How would people function if they were not ceaselessly working the many jobs I’ve created? Would they read books they’ve been meaning to get to? Spend more time with their spouses?
The Job Creator sighs. He thinks about his wife. He thinks about his first through third wives. He thinks, this Creator of Jobs, about the life not lived. He thinks of his son’s Little League games, which he’s never attended, and then wonders if it’s actually gymnastics that the kid’s into. He can’t remember.
What has the Job Creator become?
A single tear runs down his cheek.
The Job Creator knows what he must do. He knows, but he is afraid. Slowly, he takes a bottle of bourbon from his desk drawer and pours himself a stiff drink—both to steady his nerves and to create distillery jobs in the heartland.
Gazing at his reflection in the window, he points to himself and takes a deep breath. After a moment, he speaks.
The Job Creator packs a cardboard box with the dozens of Newton’s cradles that litter his desk and closes his office door one last time. Outside, he hangs a small sign that reads “Now Hiring: C.E.O.”
There, he thinks. Another job created.