I don’t. I’m racking up huge amounts of extra time on my new job, and I’m not happy about it.bee When I look around at my peers and friends, though, what I see is EVERYONE is working this hard.

Of course, per the 2004 labor dept. ruling, almost no one with either a salary or a degree is eligible for overtime, either.

I’m beginning to believe that the 40 hour work week is dead, and we should just stop pretending that it’s real. Do any of you actually work 40 hours a week? Do you recreate on the weekends?

[The photo of the original overtime worker is from DJLDorset. Great colors!]

Posted by Gwen Pearson

Writer. Nerd. Insect Evangelist. Have you heard the good news? BUGS!


  1. Heaven forbid that I ever keep track! My work is seasonal and I am starting a period where I am really busy, but I slow down in the winter.

    We are an overworked nation.

  2. It was a lovely 75 degrees here in Roanoke VA with bright sun. I managed to get outside for about 15 minutes and got a bit of sunburn.

    I guess that happens when one is a slug that never sees the sun and works at least 12 hours a day.

    In spite of the overdose of sun, this is the happiest I have felt in months.

  3. Do I work 40 hours? My billable time is certainly less than — I had 16 hours of billable time last week. But there is all the nonbillable and very necessary time that puts it over 40. I guess that makes me overworked and underemployed.

  4. This is one of the effects of inflation. Since wages trail prices in an inflationary economy, people find they have to work more to keep the value of their paycheck the same. This effect spills over to salaried employees, too, even though they don’t (as you point out) get paid overtime. What happens is that the firm employing the salaried person needs to meet their expenses as well, and so they need extra productivity from everyone.

    The Fed stopped reporting M3 (the total measure of all the money in the system, and the best measure of inflation) years ago, even though they still calculate it and use it themselves. I’ve seen four separate firms calculate their own estimates for M3, and they’re all in agreement, so that leads me to believe it’s reliable. According to these figures, inflation is more than the 3% the government is reporting; it’s more like 10%.

    Look around at how much you’re paying for things now–not just gas–and tell me if you disagree.

  5. When I worked in the news media, I used to do 70-80 hour weeks—more if a major story broke. No overtime as it was a profession.

    On the face of it, I was paid a good wage but if you worked it out as an hourly rate I was about level pegging with janitors and cleaners.

    Now that I’m farming and caring for our boys full-time, I do about 12-14 hours a day, then do another two hours researching and writing the blog. It’s about a 100-hour week for a pittance.

    Someone asked recently what I do for leisure. I laughed and said my life is leisure. I meant it and they thought I was totally stark raving bonkers.

    What they failed to grasp is that everything I do is for us (not generating profits for some already wealthy shareholder) and that I’m doing what I want when I want where I want. I can’t ask for more. Well, perhaps a little cash!!

  6. My new job provides me with something I never had before: a union.

    So, even though I am considered salaried, if I work over 40 hours on the clock I get paid for it.

    The key being “on the clock”…I can’t tell you the countless hours I spend of my own, unpaid time getting stuff togther for work (reading for suitable stories, making flannel board crap, web research, etc…) I end up doing this on my weekends.

  7. I was thinking of putting in a disclaimer for you Stonehead, since I know you are working 10 times harder than me.

    The funny thing is, when I’m working outside, time can fly by and I’m not even aware of it. Suddenly the sun is going down and I’m all dirty and happy.

    I totally get what you are saying.

    and Midge: “flannel board crap”

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