…looks like Shinobu has competitors…
|Hmmm, vidya and donuts…what are we gonna dough about that…?|
All Sorts of Loopholes
It’s pretty easy to fall asleep on these things…
For the first half of the episode we get a fantastic example of some of the daily teasing and testing that informs a workplace. Once you set aside Aoba getting her sleep schedule used to her new work schedule, that’s what it comes down to. Some days you’re in the mood for the grind, and other days you could very much do without, thank you very much. So we see the day when the potentially salty (nearly oversleeping a train stop) turns to the unexpected sweet and there are surprise donuts everywhere. Then the bosses come in with more and add rice crackers of all things to the pile! Pick your metaphors for donuts and rice crackers and you got the daily grind..
Life is Salty and Sweet
So it’s easy to see that everyone has a “mean” side…don’t ever let any cute exteriors fool you. It’s a dog eat dog world out there, and even when there are donuts a plenty, and rice crackers piled a meter high, it’s a mean mean person that gets by at the end of the day…Is a message that this show skillfully avoids, even while they play around with it. For the past ten weeks I’ve been pretty much marvelled at the way the show’s writers are able to portray working and personal conditions the way they have. It’s narrative cheating to do it in broad strokes, so they often rely on some subtle contrasts to get the message across. The sweet and salty, the unexpected versus the expected bugs, and the fact that the work doesn’t end, it’s a constant, and how you deal with that is the story. This one is about the give and take of both a jobbing life, and the give and take of your relationships. Nene and Aoba both love to tease each other as much as Aoba loves to tease Hifumi as much as Umiko loves to mess with Nene….
So, game abstraction as story metaphor?
This is suggested by the mild teasing during Hifumi’s part of the show; teasing she’d really rather not have, and that she handles with a “nice text” by the end of the show. But as far as how they approach the work, both Aoba and Nene are very much alike even with different positions, and even if that difference drives a wedge between them; and who didn’t see that coming? Both of them are detail focused, and both of them very much want what is best for each other all things considered. Now that can lead, as we see, to a whole misfire of clumsy, but well-meaning, micromanagement into their respective lives. I found it really really surprising and wonderful that the clumsiness they seem to have and share leads to the real breaking point for them both. The help they got from their respective mentors, Yagami for Aoba and now Umiko for Nene got them on the right path though. It also helped Nene realize that Aoba is making the right choices to achieve her dreams.
So, I saw you down there and I thought we should make up….
You don’t have to be Aoba to work here…
…but this suuuuuure helps…
The moral of the story? Work can sometimes be very fulfilling, but it comes at a cost, and it’s hard on the body no matter what your job is. Now I come from the service industry, so working Saturdays or the weekend was a matter of course for me…this crew’s complaints about doing it only comes across as so much Bee Oh Oh, Haitch Oh Oh to my ears, but I think that falls under YMMV. It’s always there, the work. So they dropped hints about Yagami’s mum this episode and it looks like they’ll pick up that thread next time. Until then, do you think mum sleeps in her undies at work?
Sweet texts are kinda like breaking and redecorating….but I think the message got across!