A movie that pretty much sums up the awakening process for me is Office Space. It is the epic tale of a guy, Peter Gibbons disgruntled with his meaningless 9-5 job as a code monkey at a software company. His boss has the personality of a stapler which in fact is the prized possession of another employee, Milton Waddams that complains about never receiving his paycheck every day. Turns out he was “let go” a long time ago but no one wanted to tell him. So they keep moving his desk further and further away until he ends up in the basement. It reminds me of my life. I always felt like someone was playing a joke on me; laughing behind my back ”She doesn’t know he he. She’s a gerbil on the wheel. Tee hee.” When the boss takes Milton’s stapler it is the last straw. Meanwhile, Peter is so depressed he goes to a hypnotherapist but the doctor dies of a heart attack before he pulls Peter back out of this bliss state. Suddenly nothing matters anymore accept being happy so he slacks at work and ignores his boss, Lunburgh until he finds out that he has hired someone to downsize. Rather than fire Peter the two guys that do the firing, Bob and Bob are taken with Peter’s honesty and focused, relaxed disposition but they are firing his two friends Michael and Samir. Peter begins to snap out of it and decides it’s time to convince his friends that their company and boss are evil. He asks friend Michael Bolton (not the singer) about the software he is always bragging about that will take fractions of pennies from the companies and roll it over into a personal bank account. His other friend Samir Nagheenanajar has the passwords to the system. Suddenly it becomes a gangsta movie where they awaken to the fact that they are basically slaves in someone else’s sick dream where the God of corporate America doesn’t believe in resting on Sundays and thinks Hawaiian shirt Friday is supposed to relieve them from the monotony of typing numbers into a databank and the secretary’s incessant squeak, “Just a moment please. Just a moment please. Just a moment please”. I had no idea that other people hated copy machines as much as I do. I can’t tell you how liberating it was to watch them beat the shit out of it with a baseball bat in an enemy field with the music in the background “Die mutha#$%@^! DIE!” It was like angels singing. What really tugged at my heart strings was when Peter said to Joanna, played by Jennifer Aniston, “I don’t like my job and I’m not gonna go anymore. I don’t really like paying bills. I don’t think I’m gonna do that either”. I knew that I was not alone in my contempt for the corporate world and meaningless work and my “dream of doing nothing”. It is not just about doing nothing but doing something that means something to me. Everyone has a dream and whether it is building stuff, inventing games or sleeping with two women at the same time (the lofty goal of his friend Lawrence hysterically played by Diedrich Bader when asked what he would do if he was a millionaire), it is far more meaningful than typing numbers into a computer so that someone else can make ten times more money than you and ask you ten millions times “Did you get that memo?” I don’t want to spoil the end for you in case you are one in a million that has not seen this cult classic, but let’s just say, everyone got what they deserved including Peter. Nothing goes the way he expected it to and yet it all works out because he followed his heart.