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[2019 Year in Review] All is fair in happiness and work


Special Labor Inspector Jo

By TurtuallySarcastic

Note: This post contains spoilers for Romance Is a Bonus Book.

April 23rd is a bittersweet day; let me tell you how this day affected me in 2019. Tuesday April 23rd was the first day of my one year temp contract job, and it should have been a big milestone on my journey to permanent employment and happiness. This journey started with my first year review in 2017, when Chief Kim and Glutton pushed me back on the right path after I lost my professional identity. Woo Seo-ri and her Thirty but Seventeen family cheered me on as I got rid of some toxic mindsets in the 2018 sequel. Reaching my professional destination in 2019 seemed like a brilliant ending for this trilogy.

Unfortunately I got fired six months into my temp contract, and I was catapulted once again into the unemployment pit. While this repeated misfortune would have caused me a lot of pain before I started my journey, I could now count on some K-dramas to give my (un)employment another perspective that made this misfortune easier to bear.


Rookie Historian Gu Hae-ryung

First of all, being employed does not guarantee a happy ending. Unfortunately I did not have Special Labor Inspector Jo at my disposal, nor did I possess his guts to stand up for myself and my employment rights. For that reason, I could relate a lot to all the victims of unfair working conditions in that drama. We were all touched by Inspector Jo’s willingness to fight against the evil employer on our behalf, not because we were too weak, but because our opponent was too harsh. In Rookie Historian Gu Hae-ryung, Gu Hae-ryung and her female colleagues had more luck with their opponents. When they started working, they didn’t receive the respect or training they deserved from their male seniors so they called them out on it. Fortunately Historian Min started teaching, respecting, and supporting them and the other male historians soon followed his example.

CEO Jung Bok-dong from Pegasus Market did not even bother, he let anyone pass. He gave many misfits a job and they showed their gratitude by working hard and improving themselves both on the job and on a personal level. Just like pessimistic Il-nam, I also reacted emotionally the moment I was assigned my own desk after struggling for so long. Manager Moon Seok-gu and his goal to work at headquarters mirrored my quest for permanent employment. We both had to lower our professional standards to find our success and happiness, and I admit that I am not fully there yet. I have to keep telling myself that a job is not something to blindly worship once you obtain it. Employers might have high standards for me to meet, but it will not work out if I do not set high standards for employers to meet as well. Stability and a salary are only nice when your workplace is family-like and supplies you with the respect, support and training you deserve.


Pegasus Market

Despite suffering both from employment and unemployment this year, I could fall back on the promises I made to myself last year to live 2019 to the fullest and to spend more time on Dramabeans. Dan-yi from Romance Is a Bonus Book had also been unemployed, fired, and trapped in unpleasant workplaces like me. She regretted being too hard on herself and wanted to regain the happiness she had lost when things went downhill. It completely echoed my sentiments and experiences, so I could not have wished for a better partner in crime.

Eun-ho rekindled our shared love for reading and writing, right when impossible transit times had thwarted all my other hobby ideas to fight off the unemployment slump. Reading and writing were something I could do at home. It should therefore come as no surprise that this November was devoted to National Novel Writing Month, Extraordinary You, and Dramabeans posts. My (note)books reunited me with my youth and my loved ones, helped me befriend a lot of Beanies, and actually paved the way for other hobbies and activities in the future. Outside working hours they would give me the same amount of joy as secretly fangirling off-duty did for Deok-mi from Her Private Life.

Regrettably, I originally started neglecting all these little joys to focus more on my studies, and after graduation I decided to continue this punishment until I was permanently employed. Though I clearly overestimated my influence on my professional life back then, I underestimated my determination to be happy just as much. Needless to say, I have been enjoying all these joys again ever since I came back to my senses. In summary, my trilogy concludes with an open ending, because who knows what I will find on my professional destination and when that will happen. Dan-yi went on the same journey and got permanently hired shortly afterwards, so…I am looking at you, 2020.


Romance Is a Bonus Book

 
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Life can be hard and employment life very much so. My son went to a world class Engineering School- the very best for his field (Industrial Engineering) and still had to endure several years of underemployment in contract positions (including being fired from one contract position- and losing another due to a workplace health/environmental issue) before finally getting a permanent job.

You definitely have the best attitude- the one that starts with the realization that a job is not everything nor is our life defined by a job. This is actually an advantage in the job world- because it means that you have perspective: When you walk into an interview the terror is gone and you are as likely to ask your prospective employer questions are they are to ask you questions. You absolutely nailed it when you said that, just as employers have high expectations for you, we should all have high expectations of our employer as well.

Good fortune is sure to find you in the coming year. You certainly have my best wishes.

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Thank you, the stories about your son give me hope for the new year! :)

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@turtuallysarcastic

You’re optimism is showing, and it’s inspiring. Professional journeys are long and hard, it’s so easy to be strangled by the ever growing cynicism... DB has been my place of solace during many hard hours professionally for me, too. I’ve just started at a new company, and so far I’m tentatively hoping that, even if the people are not positive, at least they won’t be negative. I’m afraid to want anything more. Maybe I should watch Chief Kim. (I usually avoid comparing work to dramas, because it’s easy to get ever more frustrated by the ideals and happy endings on the screen).

I’m glad you find your way to dramas, and here, and look forward to reading the next chapter in your story. Fighting!

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Thank you, I will keep my fingers crossed for your job adventure as well. Do watch Chief Kim, it is hilarious and you will love Junho (even more)! ;)

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May good fortune smile upon you. Fighting!

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Thank you ! :)

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Wishing you the best for 2020!!

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Thank you ! :)

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great article....all the best:-)

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Thank you ! :)

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Wonderful post.

Dan-yi really resonated with me too. I love how she actively pursued that position and each day tried to make the most of it. Also, while I did not like her clothes I liked the colors and patterns as if she wasnt going to just fade into the background anymore.

I hope 2020 leads you exactly to the place you need to be....maybe it will happen as Park Min Young finds her way to a certain bookstore.

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Well...I certainly would not mind if there was a Lee Jae-Wook lookalike included, but I can settle for a job ;) Thank you!

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Ah everything you said hit me hard, went through the exact same thing myself. More power to us to overcome this ❤️

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Thank you for the support! I hope things will go your way soon as well! :)

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All your steps are never missteps, remember that. You can always put all your experiences into your next resume and stand out that much more in your next job. Never give up, your permanent position is out there! And I have a good friend who wrote during National Writing Month, her second novel. She still doesn’t have her first published but is not giving up. Keep tenaciously fighting, @turtuallysarcastic!

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Thank you for the encouragement! :)

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I find some of your experience relatable @turtuallysarcastic and I like how you end the essay with such an inspiring optimism, may all your effort bloom beautifully in 2020, best wishes!

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Thank you, I hope I encouraged you to stay optimistic and to keep going, because it requires daily effort. However I will also cheer for you in 2020. :)

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One of the perfect review post I ever read! Don’t give up! The best awaits you! :) wishing u all the best for 2020 and able to land on a perfect job!

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Thank you! :)

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@turtuallysarcastic I loved this. I did. I especially loved where you said that being employed doesnt lead to a happily ever after. I was SO EXCITED to get my library job before this one---I last 6 months before racism and favoritism and lack of respect made me quit. I was equally excited when I got the job that I have now--more so even, as it pays more and its a big library system. If I dont like where Im at, I can try try again at another branch!
But, like you say in this write up---I cant depend on my job to bring me my joy. And, most importantly, I need to have high standards for them to meet as well. This is a really good library system. I have been TOLD many times that I need to be grateful, like bow down on the ground and be grateful that I was plucked from obscurity and chosen by this ah-mah-zing library system. And they are dead serious when they say it. I've been told this by two different managers and a few different employees. The arrogance of this community makes them discount anyone who comes in from the outside. For a while there I was becoming so beat down by this system that when my boss threatened to fire me--in front of another employee and consistently does every thing he can to make me feel welcome? I was willing to let that go. Because I HAD A JOB that paid DECENT and I DESERVED and blah blah blah.
When did being a librarian mean being in an abusive relationship? I learned to use the system to fight back.
And now I need to work on my balance, like you, and find joy out side of job.
Thanks for being SO completely awesome.

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*does everything he can to make me feel UNwelcome is what that should say.

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YOU nailed it with comparing your job to an abusive relationship. It is a shame that they cannot see what we can offer, in K-dramaland we would have been Chairman and CEO already ;)

I would not call myself awesome, I am just on Dramabeans as a means of self-therapy. The balance is a hard work in progress and I wish I could do more to help you with that. I hope you can settle for some encouragement from me. You got this! :)

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Woohoo, I got published three years in a row! :) Thank you Dramabeans Staff, for editing and publishing my review. I apologize for the RIABB spoilers, I was not aware while writing that it would turn out like this. :)
Thank you Beanies for reading and your sweet replies! I apologize for the late comment, but I just got back from a weekend with friends and zero internet ;).

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All the best for you in 2020, Turtie! Your piece reminded me to be thankful for a wonderful work family that I have right now and all the wonderful beanies with inspiring thoughts. May you find what you're looking for and here's to more inspiring drama in 2020!!

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Thank you, but with your Shortie Caregiving I should be all right ;) Here is to more fangirling over future Haru-like characters in 2020! :P

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Thanks for some other informative site. The place else may just I am getting that kind of info written in such an ideal
method? I have a project that I am simply now running
on, and I have been on the glance out for such info.

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Thank you for sharing your story with us!

May the new year bring success and desired results for you! Keep on fighting!

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Thank you for your encouragement and best wishes! :)

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Greetings! Quick question that's totally off
topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly?
My web site looks weird when viewing from
my apple iphone. I'm trying to find a theme or plugin that might
be able to resolve this issue. If you have any recommendations, please share.

With thanks!

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@turtuallysarcastic you deserve all the 💕💕💕!

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@fencejumper No, YOU do, for challenging me last year to turn this into a trilogy (you probably forgot, but it was you)! 😀

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I did actually forget 😂 but I’m so glad you submitted this. Tracking your growth journey is so inspiring in how you don’t give up. Fighting! 🙌

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It's in fact very difficult in this active life to listen news
on TV, therefore I just use the web for that reason, and obtain the latest news.

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