The job interview

…what I liked with that job was that my work had a clear impact on other people. It was not like in academia where no one really cares about what you do.

He just goes on and on about this Malaysian experience. I don’t have time for this I found myself in the jungle bullshit. He seems scattered, as if he has recklessly thrown himself around the world and is now trying to tie together the knots into something coherent also outside his own head. Leaving his old job because it killed his soul, does that mean that he has high demands or does it just make him weak and lazy?

I really think it would be great to work as a truck driver. I want to see the sunset over northern Paris from the A1, get on the highway and see the culture and landscape change in front of my eyes. I want to be a part of the truck driver community, have time to expand my mind during long stretches of quiet driving.

Ok, this guy is an idealist, another person who has read too many working class romanticising novels.

So, Mr. Edvardsson. You have five more minutes and you’re coming off as an academic who all of a sudden thought that truck driving might be something for you. Do you think that there is anything from your background that makes you more qualified than the other 50 hamburger eating, tattoo loving, moustache wearing, leather fetishists that want the same job? Why would I want someone that drives around admiring the French landscape when I can get a sweaty, chain smoking, Romanian man with chronic road rage and a complete disregard for anything remotely connected with morals?

Why did I ask him a question like this when I don’t have the time to listen to his answer? Maybe he would be a good truck driver after all. If he believes that the work will be stimulating for him he might be really good at it, and if not, he will be terrible. There is something honest about him. But how will someone who has lived on three different continents settle in one truck seat?

I think my intercultural experience will be important in this job, I’m used to interacting with people with different cultural backgrounds…

Ok, fuck it, I’ll give him the job, if he turns out to be terrible I will at least enjoy watching his idealised trucker world crumble to pieces.

Ok, Mr. Edvardsson, that’s enough. You get the job. You leave for Wuppertal, Germany with a truckload of poisonous Chinese plastic dolls that will be burned first thing in the morning. Now, if you excuse me I need to go and take a shit and then drive to Vranje in Serbia with 15,000 Gillette razors. Welcome to the world of trucking around random shit through Europe: it’s lousy hours, terrible working conditions and if you leave your left arm in the sun to often you might get cancer. I’m sure you will enjoy it.

2008 Patrik Edvardsson Short story


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