I was recently given a new position at work, and so far it’s been pretty good. Whereas my previous job was that of a glorified secretary, my new post is more in line with what I was doing back in Alberta. It also came with a modest raise, which I’ve yet to see, but I digress. My only concern is that everyone on the team seems to be leaving faster than — well — something really fast. Just last week we learned that two more people on our team would be running away, I mean leaving. There’s obviously something going on here.

But that’s not why I’m bringing this up.

A few days after our team meeting, I was approached by my manager who said they had “great news” for me. Excited, I asked what it was. I was told that, starting immediately, I would be “taking over our faithfully departed’s responsibilities” (warning: this may not be an exact quote).

Immediately my mind thought ‘promotion’, so naturally I asked if I was being given one. Half knowing the answer already, but still hoping, my manager chuckled a bit and eventually replied, “no… but nice try.”

I love being a wage slave.

To be honest though, I’m not really bothered by this, since I appreciate being given the chance to learn new skills. I can obviously use these to apply for better paying jobs within the organization later on. But you’ve got to wonder how ethical (not exactly the right word) it is to give me a job someone else was doing for nearly twice my current salary  — this on top of what I was doing already! Experience-gaining aside, it doesn’t strike me as very fair. But you know what, nobody gives a %^#@. Sure I was given excuses that the so-and-so I will be replacing did more than what I would be doing, but I doubt it.

But that’s the way it is in the working world. Beholden to my salary to survive, I don’t have much of a choice but to accept it. I could raise a stink and go to the union, but that would only get me black listed with management. I might as well wear a scarlet ‘P’ attached to my work shirt for “pain in the butt”. Not exactly the best tactic if you want to move ahead within an organization. I could also quit – but then what? Work for Walmart? It’s not like good paying jobs are easy to find – especially in this economy. No, it’s better to suck up.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining, but this experience was yet another reminder that I need to change things up. If only financial independence could come faster. I’m barely over 30 and it’s already obvious that working for a wage is a raw deal — yet the opposite is scary as well. At least with a unionized job I’m more or less guaranteed an income for the rest of my working life… as well as a pension for when I retire (that is, if the baby boomers don’t empty the fund first).

All I have to do is trade in 30 of the best years of my life to get it.

A lot of people I know would kill to have what I have, so I don’t want to sound ungrateful. But still, something doesn’t sit right about this.