Why you ask? Because he posted this on his blog and I went and read it which means I now have to write this post because whining, pissy artists tick me off.
Why? Because I AM AN ARTIST and they make those of us who do work our butts off look bad.
This won’t be a long rant because in about 20 minutes I have to fix a lunch, get cleaned up and walk 1.5 miles to my job. I walk because it’s not that far, the exercise is good for me (I do a 3.2 mph pace) and I see no reason to use gas unless I have to.
So, let’s begin:
I am so lucky that I have been able to create art and music and fulfill my passions through my job for the past 11 years. But I’m stupid enough to have put all my eggs in one basket. It is now the only thing I can do to make money. I’m 33 years old and I can’t make coffee. I don’t know how to use Excel, or bartend, or wait tables, and I’m officially too old to join the police force. I’ve lost the confidence to go back to school and feel stressed out about impending debt when I think about further education for even one second.
At 33 you can’t make coffee or learn a new skill? Waiting tables is hard work but not beyond anyone’s capability of learning how to do unless you are severely mentally or physically handicapped, so lets cut to the chase on that one right there – you don’t WANT TO! This has nothing to do with “Gee, I’m too old” because I doubt you would become a cop in the first place (hell, I doubt you would pass the qualifications to begin with), it has to do with you don’t want to do it but when put that way it makes you sound lazy, so instead you phrase it as “Gee, I don’t know how and I don’t have the confidence to learn” – not our problem.
I have several jobs within the music industry as of now: bands, DJing, remixing and even writing music for other artists. I’m a workaholic and have my hands in a bunch of different places. But, all these jobs have unstable incomes. I don’t get a salary; I don’t know how much money I will make next month, next year or five years from now. I don’t have health insurance. And I live with the stress of not knowing, not planning and not understanding whether or not I will ever be able to reach my goals of having a family and feeling safe financially. When I say “safe,” I mean safe. I mean basics. I mean health insurance that is good enough for me to take care of myself, not just if I need a $10,000-dollar, life-threatening procedure. I mean dental care. I mean saving money in a retirement fund so that I can take care of myself when I’m 80 years old. Clearly, there is a difference between survival and luxury.
Paraphrase – I did what I wanted to do with my life, but because of CHOICES I MADE ON MY OWN I don’t have the benefits that I would have had with going the company route.
So, once again, whose fault is that?? You had a choice and you took it. Don’t go crying about how you don’t have this or that. You can go get a job somewhere that has benefits, I did. I work at a call center right now (with paid days off, medical, dental and vision benefits) because I can’t get a job doing animation, and my side projects of pistol grip making and sculpture are just starting up. I have benefits, insurance, all that jazz. Oh, wait.. you don’t want to do that – you already said so in the beginning.
Now to my favorite part
I spent days trolling around Williamsburg, looking at shitty apartments with cockroaches lining the doorways, fighting neighbors, rats in the ceiling, bedbugs infesting the linoleum floors, fifth-floor walk-ups and cat-pee-soaked carpets. The rent was exorbitant, availability was scarce, and I was turned down by two different landlords for being “freelance.” To be honest, I don’t blame them. Not only am I freelance, but I’m lesbian freelance. Double whammy. What was the reason they turned me down? Because it was easier to rent to a rich, trust-fund, straight-guy banker who wants to live in the coolest borough in the world? Because when he met me he saw a tattooed gender outlaw who makes “queer electronic punk music” and isn’t sure when the next check is going to come in? Yeah, I don’t blame him. He doesn’t give a shit about how kids email me all the time thanking me for keeping them from committing suicide. It’s not part of his capitalist business practice.
Right, the whole reason he didn’t rent it to you is because your gay. Sure. It wasn’t at all because he has expenses he has to pay on the building you were looking at and if you can’t pay him, he can’t pay his expenses. I know this is hard for you to comprehend, but 95% of us that are not gay could give a shit less about what you do in your bedroom and who you do it with. It really doesn’t even make it onto the bottom of the give-a-shit list.
If someone came up to you wanting you to do some music for them but they told you “Gee, I might not be able to pay you for it” would you invest the time and energy to work for them? I’m going to guess not, especially if you have another client who you know can pay on time and the full amount due. Yeah, it’s part if his ‘capitalist business practice’ because he has a lot more to worry about than just you. He has other tenants that will expect if their pipes rupture, the pipes will be repaired. Something breaks, it will get fixed. All of that costs money, and if you aren’t paying what you should then he won’t have the cash to do the things he needs to. Simple as that, and emails don’t pay the bills.
I get so fucking tired of people like this who bitch and moan about how awesome their lives are while at the same time crying about how they don’t have this or that. You made your choice, deal with it. What you want is for everyone to feel sorry for you and to take from those who made something and give it to you and that isn’t what this country is about. You want to take money from ME to support you!!! You want all this socialized crap – Move to Europe, or Canada, but leave me – a fellow artist – the fuck alone.
And I’m still pissed at Mike W but I have to go to work now.
OH – one last thing:
I will always be a queer woman, a woman who makes 77 cents to the man’s dollar, and a queer who makes 23 percent less than the heterosexual. Does that mean that I make 54 cents to the straight male dollar? Wow.
Thought you said you were freelance. That means YOU set your own price. When I or my wife (who is a landscape painter) do a freelance job we tell the client how much it will be. So, if you think that you aren’t making enough then it’s your own damn fault for not setting your fees high enough. Quit blaming all your problems on the fact that your female and gay, your real problem seems to be that you can’t take responsibility for your own actions.