I’ve been reading things, both in book form and just generally online. Something that has come to my attention is the shift in jobs. Now lets be fair, the job market has always changed and adapted as technology improves and culture changes. We did not have jobs like ‘cyber technician’ because there was no cyber to have to worry about security for. In that sense, we should be grateful for the way our job market has changed. However I would not consider that necessarily a good thing and I think that the things we lost along the way likely have not been worth it, at least if we were playing a god game of sorts and could choose a time for our peoples.
Now naturally the question becomes “what jobs are we missing that affects you so?” and a common retort to basically this whole thought of mine will be “well you only think that way because you live in the modern world and see its flaws, whereas the past has its flaws hidden”.
Starting with that question, I will talk briefly about A job that stuck out to me in particular, there is another but I’ll write about this one and we’ll see.
I’ve been reading the book of ‘Howls Moving Castle’ by Diana Wynne Jones. The book version is very very different to the Ghibli film that it inspired, and its been very interesting to read as a result. The job that caught my eye is still the same for the most part. Sophie, the protagonist and resident sweetheart of the book/film, is part of a family that owns a ‘hattery’, A store that specialises in hats, with the product being produced on the second floor and tailor made. Whilst the job of a Tailor is still around, albeit barely in the modern context, A hattery is less so. Most shops that sell hats, bags etc consisting of produce imported from china and the sellers being little more than say albanian or pakistani immigrants, with no concept of how the thing is made nor appreciation for the craft.
I think it is a very sad state of affairs that the job and skills are no longer appreciated, either by the people of the country, or the kinds of people who occupy the space in their abscence. For this job in particular there are two major issues, one is ease of access and two is customer expectations. For one, it is very easy to buy a ‘good enough’ item like a hat or bag from the likes of Ebay or Amazon, I have been guilty of such a thing myself, or even just from a supermarket, I have never been one for a fancy hat, just a black one that sits on my head well enough will do.
There are expectations of access, and the requirement for its immediacy, and there is also an expecation and an understanding that it will not last very long. Perhaps to be a bit nicer, an understanding that it may not, but a willingness to sacrifice that because it is so easy and so relatively cheap that it doesnt matter to them. This is something i’ve thought of with regard to clothing for a long time, granted even though I typically buy cheap clothes, I rarely have issue with the length of time that they last.
A third and final issue relates to the second. Our context for luxury is different, only really people who have more money than sense will buy something ‘premium’ however instead of being hand made and customised by an intimate conversation with the storekeep, ‘premium’ just denotes higher material costs, brand name and a slightly nicer factory in china, or maybe it’ll be a factory in a slightly more well paying country. How extravagant!
I dont really have anything super profound to say on the subject, just that I think its very sad that people cant really specialise in things that their local populace needs in the same way, easily or otherwise. The only real way that you can is in the context of ‘boutique’ products and other premium tier items. I would be happy to even occupy that kind of space, however local policy makes it very difficult to get a store on the street, as well as the general decline of the concept of a ‘high street’. I wont go on too much about that or we’ll be here all day.
I’ve been a bit miserable for probably the better part of 6 months, and just generally stressed for the past year. I’m beginning to feel better generally lately so hopefully i’ll post more and generally be a happier person. Its nothing big, just life gave me lemons, but i squirted them into my eyes by accident, repeatedly.
I’ve updated the server hardware that this blog and the other services are hosted on, I am tempted in future to host other things, with a forum being something i’m particularly keen on. If you have anything you’d particularly like to see, be it software or forum themes/topics etc feel free to drop me a message.
I hope you’ve all been well and have been staying safe.