This Dustinland comic is about my recent experience of going into the office for the first time in 15 months. It was actually kind of nice after the weirdness wore off. But the night before, the morning of, and about the first few hours — basically up until lunch — all super weird. Just hard to explain. Crazy to think one day we’ll all look back at this as some wacky time. Just kidding, we’ll look back at this all fondly as our robot overlords whip up with old iPhone charging cords. Just kidding, AI will exterminate us. Just kidding, climate change and global resource wars will have finished us off first. Just kidding, everything is gonna be great!
PS Did you catch the Bo Burnham reference in the strip?
This week’s new Dustinland comic was inspired by some of the job interviews I went on last year, before landing my current gig. You know, not every interview is crazy and weird, but some are. Especially in the tech sector, which I am not really a part of, but I guess you could say peripherally, I am. But yes, I had some interviews that felt like a maze of trick questions as opposed to the “get to know each other” back and forth I’m used to. Times are changing, my friends! As the Googles and Amazons and Facebooks of the world get bigger and bigger, everyone else wants to emulate them, and weird interviews are part of their process.
This new Dustinland comic is my take on the first day of school posts that have been dominating my social media feeds lately. Shouldn’t need no explainin… but if you don’t get it, just Google “first day of school chalkboard.”
Posted in parenthood, work
Tagged adulthood, career, childhood, children, father, fatherhood, first day of school, job, kids, office, office humor, parenthood, parenting, parents, raising children, raising kids, school, work
Well, my hand is healing, but this new Dustinland comic is still a bit sloppy. Also I just got back from Disney World, so I’ve been busy. So yes, this strip is not perfect, but it does exist, which I think is a plus. Also it really did happen, which is super weird and trippy.
More on Disney soon, but I really do need time to come up with something epic and David Foster Wallace-ian for such an experience.
Posted in work
Tagged career, computer simulation, cubicle, elon musk, job, jobs, jump, music, new job, office, office humor, quit, quitting, van halen, work, workplace
This week’s Dustinland comic is one of my favorites out of everything I’ve done over the last year or so. I finally had some time to sit down and really work on a strip because my kid was over at his buddy’s house all day on a Saturday afternoon. And that let me really go to town on this one. I like when I can really push it far and take the joke not just to the next level, but to increasing levels of unpredictable absurdity. Just when you think you’ve got the joke, it twists on you, many times in a row.
Maybe I like it more than everyone else will. Who knows. But it was fun to draw, and that’s all that matters.
This week’s Dustinland comic is a fast and cute first world problems sort of deal about something that happened to me late night in the office the other day. No big deal. Just a cute little one. I did draw it in colored pencil though, so that’s different. I’ve been doodling with my kid so I figured why not try his art supplies on my comic just to switch things up. Plus I was too lazy to go downstairs to get my felt-tip pen.
Posted in work
Tagged advertising, career, drinking, job, jobs, office, single malt, whiskey, work, working late, yamazaki
This week’s new Dustinland comic is not really pro Trump or anti Trump. It’s about how his weaselly ways seem to work. Well, at least in terms of his own self interest. As for the rest of us, well, we’ll see how this experiment works out pretty soon.
As you may gather from this week’s Dustinland comic, advertising is a weird business. Sort of a relic from an earlier era in terms of how we still function via partnerships. Now, not every art director or copywriter has a partner, and some agencies function in a more fluid way, but overall, creative partnerships still run pretty rampant in this industry. And there’s a lot that comes with that. I mean, you’re staking your career on this other person. It’s a really big deal with huge stakes—as people who have had unsuccessful partnerships can probably attest to even more so than people with excellent partnerships.
Well, for me and my partner it’s been four years. It’s tough to see it end. Totally on good terms, but still, it will be hard to get used to it. Professionally, we were on point, trusted each other, knew exactly what our strengths and weaknesses were. Personally, well, we “hang out” a lot. Probably see each other more than we see our families, at least during the week. Hell, it’s nice just having someone around who can tell on those days when I woke up in a bad mood and to just leave me alone for the morning until I snap out of it. But hey, it’s work, not play. Business. And, well, I guess… this.
This week’s Dustinland comic compares two different states of mentality regarding the workplace. Or careers really.
When I was young, I was aimless. I didn’t care about work, and I had a pretty easy dead-end job, 9-5, in and out, no stress. So on the day-to-day side of it, life was great. No worries. No nightmares about looming presentations. No fear of layoffs. But in the grand scheme of things, it was stressful. Now, I was getting paid peanuts, which was fine at the time, since I was young and didn’t really need much besides money for beer and rent. But looking toward the future, I knew that would be a problem. And even worse, the bigger picture… there was really no place to go, no “up.” Just a steady dull career of churning out the same thing for a barely increasing wage. No pressure, but no future. And that was it’s own kind of long term awful stress.
These days, I take work a lot more seriously. It’s my career. My life. I have a family to take care of. I have pride in what what I do. And I have a career where there is a lot of potential for success. So looking forward, things are much improved. And in the wallet area, that too. But now there’s a different kind of concern. A day to day creeping. A consuming stress. Even physical pain. Yes, it’s that cliche career stress you heard about all your life, growing up, watching TV and movies, reading books, seeing the stressed out fat, balding out of shape white collar father with an ulcer in a migraine. Lying in bed, thinking about work, even dreaming about it. Checking your email while on vacation. Ah, mo money, mo problems. And freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose. There’s got to be a reason they’ve been writing song lyrics about the same subject for 50 years.
Posted in work
Tagged career, job, office, work
So let me just make a few things clear about this week’s Dustinland comic.
Yes, it did happen, pretty much exactly like that. The coworker was not a superior. He or she does not look anything like the person I drew in the comic. We were not on a date—we went out with a group to discuss work offsite, then we were the last two left. She no longer works with me, and she probably does not know or care that I am Jewish, or remember this even happened, really.
Now, I really don’t think she was being overtly malicious or evil. She did really seem to feel awkward even saying it. So really I just laughed it off – silly young girl saying something stupid. But still, it does confirm that some stereotypes just don’t go away.
I would kind of like to really delve into this stereotype, but I don’t have the energy, because it would truly take a lot of words. I think with every racial or ethnic or cultural group of people, we all know people who epitomize every cliche about them, just like we know people who prove them all wrong. But it’s so easy and convenient when people do fit these molds, it’s hard not to go there.
I don’t know. It’s a weird world out there. And most of the time, it’s just easier to let things slide.
Oh, and definitely watch what you say around coworkers.
Posted in work
Tagged jewish, jews, office, work