Five jobs female job seekers can apply for

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I am not snobby about work; I’ve been working in some capacity since the age of 13 and in that time I’ve been a cleaner, a dish pig, a driver, a phone sex operator, an office temp and even a one-time electrician’s assistant. A friend and I used to go to an Irish pub in Adelaide and interpretive ballet dance on the stage, but we weren’t paid for it. We weren’t even really asked to do it, but that’s a minor technicality. The point is, I’ll try anything once except golden showers and that coffee that uses melted butter instead of milk. But if there are no jobs to go around, what’s a lass to do?

With the Government’s proposed changes to Centrelink payments, jobseekers (particularly those under the age of 30) would be forgiven for worrying that a life of starvation and professional impotency awaits them. From July 1 2015, the worker ants in Tony Abbott’s strictly segregated Australian colony will be collectively be required to apply for more jobs than actually exist at an individual rate of 40 per month.

If it sounds harsh, it’s because it is. There are few things more ironic than a government opposed to bureaucratic red tape creating an entire system made of nothing but the stuff. But it’s not actually as dire as it seems. After all, this is Abbott’s Australia! And that means two things:

1. It’s an unapologetically regressive feudal system of governance; and

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2. It’s open for business.

In the spirit of creativity (which, if you are to listen to Abbott’s Australians, actually has a monetary value in the negative), I’ve provided a list of jobs that enterprising young women can apply for in the coming years.

 

1. Position of King’s Mistress

Marriage has always been a political institution, designed to benefit patriarchal overlords via the exchange of properties and titles. Kings laugh in the face of marrying for love! After all, a love match might feel nice in the beginning but it’s unlikely to secure you an alliance with Germany. Nor does it ensure the kind of pragmatism demonstrated by sensible women who understand the benefit in accompanying their husbands to state events or visits throughout the fiefdom. You may not see them at any other point throughout the year, but that’s because their busy washing the grease of compromise from their milk bathed skin.

On the other hand, Kings are Very Important People who have the enormous task of governing communities by leaching off the hard work of peasants. It’s a pretty stressful job, and they need some downtime. Part of that downtime includes rambunctious naked play with nubile and ambitious young maidens whose young age belies their ability to expertly navigate a codpiece. It’s as legitimate a job as any, and I’ve a feeling that there are plenty of ongoing positions available in the Australian Court.

 

Where to send your applications: The Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet

 

2. Official food taster

In the feudal system, it’s not unusual for Important Leaders to be met with dastardly assassination attempts from political opponents or serfs. Consequently, it’s necessary to employ the services of food tasters to test for poison. If Joffrey Baratheon’s food taster had been available during the Purple Wedding, he wouldn’t have ended up a bloated mass of blood and froth, dead before he could even sadistically consummate his marriage to Lady Margaery Tyrell. The dreams of Cersei Lannister, dashed on the rocks of retribution.

Why not apply then to be Official Food Taster to the Office of the Prime Minister and/or the cohort of Lords and Advisors which serve him? Sure, you run the risk of consuming a fatal amuse-bouche, but the time preceding your death will be a gastronome’s delight. As an added bonus, you could probably spit in each dish before passing it on. It’s the little perks of a job that really make it enjoyable, don’t you think?

 

Where to send your applications: The Office of the Prime Minister, The Office of the Treasurer

 

3. A Knight’s Squire

As we’re retreating to feudal times, we’ll have to endure the indignity of reversing the noble goals of equal opportunity. The glories of battle and high adventure are not for the ladies, who must instead fill their days as seamstresses or old crones. This isn’t to say that you can’t sneak into the position of squire though. All you need is to embrace a look of androgyny (which is quite high fashion anyway, when you think about it) and learn how to spit (a sideways career move for previous food tasters who want to get out the game, perhaps).

 

Where to send your applications: The Australian Senate, The Australian Christian Lobby, The Australian Young Liberals

 

4. Wicked Stepmother

There are few positions of power available to women under a feudal system, save for Soothsayer and Paternal King’s bargaining chip. But if you’re willing to allow a torturous origin story turn you into a bitter, twisted woman with evil powers and an arsenal of magical implements (aka a feminist AMIRITE?!), then you can really find no better option than Wicked Stepmother.

It’s a job with a limited lifespan and an almost guaranteed sour ending, but it will keep you in furs and servants for a period of at least 16 years.

 

Where to send your applications: Frances Abbott (c/o The Whitehouse Institute)

 

5. Village Idiot

Sorry, this position has already been filled.   

 

9 comments

  • Many women during the absence of their husbands did not just sit and embroider during the middle ages.

    One example:
    letters of Margaret Paston written between 1441 and 1447. Margaret was a rich heiress who was married to Sir John Paston, a lawyer, who spent several months away each year in London at the law courts. During his absence, Margaret was left in charge of the huge estates. There are 104 surviving letters which Margaret wrote to her husband that tell us about her busy life.

    Our views of the life of women in the middle ages have changed as history has been revisited (a feminist initiative) looking at the life of women. The economic power they had and the lives they led are a great deal different and not as oppressive as we previously believed.

    Commenter
    Bev
    Date and time
    August 01, 2014, 9:31AM
    • Excellent comment Bev, Ms Ford treats wives as lesser beings just because they are wives. Those who are not here to defend themselves such as Mrs Paston would, without any doubt in my mind, have Ms Clem Ford for dinner- intellectually, socially, academically. Sadly she is not here to make a comment herself.

      Commenter
      Belle
      Date and time
      August 01, 2014, 12:47PM
  • Number five: thanks for the chuckle

    Commenter
    Pink Peril
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    August 01, 2014, 11:04AM
    • It would have been interesting to see a serious article form you on this matter. Unless we manage to expand the job market and find within the economy a way to create and sustain more jobs potentially the opportunity for more women who don't wish to be unemployed or "stay at home mums" will be exist, unless we can exchange them for more men wishing to assume this role.
      Methods for job creation and what men and women can do to sustain this would have been intriguing, but instead those column centimetres are taken up with sarcastic, politically motivated fluff. Can this become topic that is examined? If Clementine doesn't wish to examine it can someone else?
      I for one would like to know how we men can assist in this process,and I am sure there are more men out there just like me.

      Commenter
      david
      Date and time
      August 01, 2014, 11:42AM
      • Likewise it would have been good to have seen serious articles on the different precautions that women take to avoid being assaulted, or on what Clem thinks men should be looking for instead of what some article took exception to was saying.

        With regards to the requirement to apply for 40 jobs a month I agree it seems unlikely to help job applicants much and may actually hinder them, although I would assume it could be fairly easily gamed once you have a standard resume and cover letter setup. In any case it would potentially have been interesting to see a serious piece on the topic rather than this hitpiece.

        Commenter
        Hurrow
        Location
        Hurrowhurrow@yahoo.com.au
        Date and time
        August 01, 2014, 12:24PM
      • @David 11:42 - There isn't a serious proposition here to the village idiots' 'work for the pleasure' proposal. Like the Turkish Women, we should laugh OneTermTony all the way back to England (medieval) where he belongs.

        Commenter
        OpenWindow
        Location
        Melbourne
        Date and time
        August 01, 2014, 1:35PM
    • Thanks for my Friday chuckle, Clem!

      Your satirical articles are the cherry on top of my week :)

      Commenter
      Donna Joy
      Date and time
      August 01, 2014, 12:57PM
      • Yes I enjoyed your amusing take on a very real issue that hits home. I feel that as automation increases fields that employ a significant proportion of women will become affected, for example algorithms replacing typists.

        Commenter
        Moira Greyland
        Date and time
        August 01, 2014, 1:35PM
        • I wholeheartedly agree that 40 bags full of applications is ridiculous for someone struggling to make ends meet. You just cant afford the petrol to go all over the place and still take care of daily issues that crop up relentlessly when your unable to find a job.
          Maybe there is room for some creative thinking by a clever woman, for a sort of job seeking co operative, or another variation of that amazing bank in India that supports women to be self employed. I have always preferred to employ women when I had a business, its just so hard to pick those who will be happy to get along with everyone without spinning out, or finding other priorities. Congratulations to all enterprising, self employed people.

          Commenter
          Rod
          Location
          Arcadia
          Date and time
          August 01, 2014, 1:45PM
          Comments are now closed