Poor work. Too often framed as play’s nemesis, work is regarded as a drag, no fun, where you don’t want to be, something to get done and away from. All work and no play, you know the cliché.
But in this issue of Dark Rye we’re not talking about the kind of work that alarm clocks make you get up and go do begrudgingly. Rather, the work we’re exploring—the real work—haunts you, beckons, it calls you like a siren from within.
This is the kind of work that shapes and hones you into something more than you were before. This is work you vanish in, becoming like a selfless instrument. Unburdened. Expansive. Free. Far from play’s opposite, we discover a notion of work closer to play itself; a play embellished with ideas like service and love. For this work, no alarm clock is needed.
In the stories that follow, a couple loses themselves in love and the family tradition of working with denim. A Malaysian woman uses the traditional food of her culture to escape the oppressive confines of that culture and awaken in an American Dream. We explore the tireless work of green things and their stewards, busting and cracking through the concrete of Buffalo’s west side. And finally, we meet a chicken farmer who, with humility and style, reveals the integrity and simplicity of being originally civilized.
The common thread throughout is honest sweat and the true calling of the kind of hard work that pays in ways that look like play. Real earning. Smiles. Good medicine.
Have a read, enjoy and then get back to becoming a selfless instrument of service and love already!