State imposed non-conformist conformity, Israeli style


This feels like some bizarre Chasidic story which I hope will have a sweet ending….

CB recently brought home a letter from her Ulpan from the “Ministry of Immigrant Absorption  Employment Division Employment Referral Center for Olim” (Yikes that’s long). It said “Are you looking for a job….Do Not let yourselves struggle along all on your own in dealing with the finding a job process: let our experts help you in providing you with a framework for job-seeking.”

So I did. I let them provide for me. I figured it couldn’t hurt.

What do I discover? That because I received  the Absorption Ministry’s artist grant for musicianship four years ago they can’t help me. Why? because I am listed as a musician. How did I get listed as a musician? When I applied for the grant that’s what I listed as my profession without knowing that’s what I was doing. How do I change it? I can’t.

“But I am a writer and 2nd time aspiring internet geek,” I said.

The woman apologized for my strange predicament, which reminded me of Jerry Seinfeld’s animated film “Bee Movie?”

Here’s a little Wikipedia synopsis of the first few minutes:

“Barry B. Benson is “just an ordinary bee” in a hive located in Sheep’s Meadow in Central Park in New York City. Barry recently graduated from college and is about to enter the hive’s Honex Industries (a division of Honesco Corporation and owned by the Hexagon Group) honey-making workforce. Along with his best friend Adam Flayman Barry is initially very excited, but his latent, non-conformist attitude emerges upon finding out that his choice of job will never change once picked.”

Exit fantasy, input reality. My middle name is Barry.

At one point Barry the bee does save the world so maybe there’s something to it.

Meanwhile, I’m still waiting to hear back from my Absorption Ministry advisor on whether I still receive a voucher for some kind of retraining course. I keep buzzing her up but she hasn’t got back to me. You know, in the wallet this unemployment thing really stings.

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