These people are all unemployed. Also they're in black and white. Which is worse? We will never truly know.
As all major media outlets from Seattle to Neptune have reported on an hourly basis, the current American job market resembles something scraped off the grille of a 18-wheeler. Before the job market implosion there was a magical, mysterious, enchanting period of time when companies actually wanted to employ people and pay them for work. Yeah, I know it sounds far-fetched, but it's true; ask your grandfather or your great-grandfather about it. If they're dead then get a ventriloquist to prop up their corpses and make it appear as if they're talking to you. With the exception of the ventriloquist industry, the job market is currently resting on the bottom of the ocean with absolutely no surfacing in sight. Companies are laying off employees in staggering numbers; Sprint recently sold one of their office buildings and all employees inside to a Japanese firm in exchange for a hot dog machine and two minor league players to be named later. With the job market shrinking, unemployment rising, and more movies about abusive husbands appearing on the Lifetime Network, the United States is quickly becoming a big wad of land wedged between Mexico and Canada and two oceans that I can't remember offhand. Which it was before, only now there are a lot more unemployed people living in it.
However, there is good news on the horizon. Yes, Something Awful, a website known for its "good vibes," "upbeat nature," and "complete bullshit," has once again brought hope to the millions and millions of people who have never heard of this website. While traditional companies such as Ford, Qwest, and AOL-Time-Warner-NBA-John Wilkes Booth are laying off employees by the boatload, many people don't know that a new and exciting job market is recently resurfacing once again... and they're hiring faster than ever. The major news outlets refuse to publicize this growing trend because they're either afraid of being sued or perhaps getting blown up by death ray beams, but Something Awful is not a website that can be easily threatened by such petty things. Well we can be easily threatened, we're just usually too stupid to understand or comprehend the threats. So without further ado (we really hate ados here), let me introduce you readers to a series of job opportunities that will reward you with such exciting things as below-average pay, backbreaking labor, and management that comes equipped with chainguns protruding from their ribcages. Yes, that's correct, I'm talking about getting a job working for a supervillian.
When the job market began picking up in the mid 1990's, the supervillian labor industry experienced the biggest employment drop in history. Grunts and menial workers fled at an alarming rate, choosing to pursue positions which didn't force them to push a giant wooden wheel 20 hours a day while a fat, semi-naked man crossed his arms and laughed. Hell, I think even the fat, semi-naked, arm-crossing guys left as well. This created a shortage in the supervillian work force, causing many major pillars of evil to fade into the background and go back to their previous fulltime jobs of working at Gamespy. Now, with the resurgence of unemployment, the supervillian work force industry is expecting to fill hundreds of thousands of horrible jobs that they were unable to construct brainless robots to perform. In exchange for an ample amount of cash (and the promise that we wouldn't be vaporized from outer space), we have agreed to spotlight a select few open positions that various supervillians are looking to fill.
Look at all those prongs and stuff! Lots of prongs = job stability!
EMPLOYER: Krang and Master Shredder
LOCATION: The Technodrome, which constantly moves around under the Earth. Sometimes it goes above the Earth too. We're not actually sure when or why it goes anywhere.
JOB TITLE: Engineer
JOB DESCRIPTION: We've got that little satellite thing underneath the giant eyeball on top and none of us can figure out what it does. We think it's for DirecTV, but all the televisions inside the Technodrome just show footage of what's going on above the Earth's surface. We don't know exactly how they're able to do that, especially since we don't even own any cameras. An ideal applicant will have extensive electrical engineering knowledge as well as the ability to climb up on top of giant metal spheres on wheels. If you prove to be a trustworthy individual, you will eventually be allowed to work on that giant eyeball deal we've got installed on top and maybe try to figure out how we can get it to do something valuable like shoot lasers or radiation beams or whatever. To be honest, there's a whole lot of shit hanging off the Technodrome and we have absolutely no clue how to operate any of it. We bought the thing used off of eBay and it didn't come with any instruction manual, so we gave the seller a really negative rating. If we ever figure out how to shoot lasers from it, we'll probably incinerate him as well.
SALARY / BONUSES: $34k / year plus the luxury of living inside a giant subterranean metal sphere with an eyeball on top and possibly DirecTV.
EMPLOYER: Krang and Master ShredderAll Cobra employees must be flexible. Ha ha! Get it? That was a little play on words! Thanks for playing along!
LOCATION: The Technodrome (see above)
JOB TITLE: Foot Clan soldier
JOB DESCRIPTION: As you probably know, all our evil schemes take roughly 24 minutes to plan, implement, and ultimately fail. We occasionally experience schemes which are estimated to be foiled a few minutes before this target time frame, requiring Foot Clan employees to be dispatched and waste time getting beaten up by various heroes who do not like us or support our corporate goal of "ruling the world." Employees will be expected to know how to dress in a primary-colored jumpsuit (we will provide the jumpsuit) and blend in with various other coworkers whose sole purpose is to be beaten up either before or after you. We are not looking for any "team players" who will attempt to aid or support fellow workers in any way; we just need you to wear a red jumpsuit and get hit with a wooden pole or thrown into a trashcan. Under no circumstances should you attack the enemy while he is engaging in combat with a fellow employee.
SALARY / BONUSES: Minimum wage. You will also receive a red jumpsuit that will cover up any blood stains you receive while getting your lungs kicked in.
EMPLOYER: Cobra Commander
LOCATION: The Terror-Drome (not to be confused with the "Technodrome" which was manufactured by a completely different Malaysian engineering film)
JOB TITLE: Idea man
JOB DESCRIPTION: The Cobra organization is known throughout the world as one of the most creative and ingenious terrorist organizations in history. While traditional terrorist groups choose to spread their political message via kidnappings, executions, and bombings, Cobra has instead opted to consistently devise convoluted, nonsensical, bizarre, and expensive methods to rule the world. Each one of these plots has invariably failed on a grand scale, but fortunately we have a group of investors with an unlimited supply of cash derived from selling tar heroin to schoolchildren. As a Cobra Idea man you will be responsible for brainstorming inefficient plans which will initially take the world by surprise and appear to be undoubtedly successful, but will have one poorly-concealed weakness which becomes apparent to anybody with an IQ greater than their waist size. Basically we've got a whole bunch of money and we have no idea what to do with it; if nobody gives us ideas, then we just end up shoving it into garbage bags and throwing them into a pit of acid (which we bought). Acceptable plans will include:Cloning. We don't care what you clone or how you clone it, just clone something. Management prefers if the clone eventually goes out of control.SALARY / BONUSES: $98k / year + medical and dental benefits. Unfortunately, we might require you to have metal objects welded to your body or various additional "visual enhancements" like a cape or flashing strobe light hat which alerts your enemies to your presence over sixteen miles away.Sure it's big and made out of metal, but so are disco balls.
Chemical warfare. Now we're not talking about "traditional" chemical warfare such as Anthrax, we're looking for really goofy shit such as neon blue gas which makes people go to sleep and have a dream about Cobra Commander and how much they like him, causing them to talk about their dream the next day around the water cooler at work. As we mentioned before, these plans don't really have to revolve around global conquest. We do a lot of this stuff just for the hell of it. Make sure that the chemical is easily visible and comes in a primary color.
Planning trips to ancient, undiscovered cities to find mysterious secrets that grant unbelievable yet somewhat vague power. Management will undoubtedly abuse and misuse this power, resulting in what essentially was a huge waste of time and money, but it's not like we have anything else to do anyway. We have a Department of Jumping on Trampolines for crying out loud.
Devising new vehicles and weapons. We've realized that there's only so many variations on "tank, helicopter, plane, and jeep" that we can produce, so we're looking to build some unconventional weapons and vehicles. Like stuff with nine wheels that each rotate and glow underneath a helicopter with tiny planes for propellor blades. The more plastic the better.
EMPLOYER: Darth Vader
LOCATION: The Death Star. It floats aimlessly around space like a golfball in a jacuzzi.
JOB TITLE: Architect
JOB DESCRIPTION: The Death Star houses the finest of the Empire's Imperial personnel and technology, as well as a large number of fighter ships, guns, planet-destroying lasers, and various other really kickass stuff. However, the original design was created by one of Darth Vader's uncles who got the contract based on nepotism, not skill. As a result, we estimate that there is currently roughly 450,000 people lost in various locations throughout the Death Star, unable to determine where they are or how to get back. We're not even sure if there are housing quarters anywhere on the station. All we know is that we're inside a huge floating chunk of metal the size of a moon and there's this one room where all the highly technical stuff happens such as blowing up planets or calling long distance. Once we leave that room, it's anybody's guess as to where we'll end up. We're looking for an experienced architect with experience in AutoCAD, codes, consultant coordination, and must be a registered architect with the Association of Evil Higher Learning. Prospective employee must be able to:Make hallways wider. Currently the average Death Star hallway is about wide enough to accommodate a box of cereal (when turned sideways). Our expansion plans include hiring more "Fat Men With Cannons Strapped to Their Backs," so we must have hallways they can wedge themselves through without the use of greasing up first with Crisco.SALARY / BONUSES: 382 gigacredits / moon year. You will also be given a Storm Trooper set of armor that serves virtually no function whatsoever, since anytime any Storm Trooper gets shot, stabbed, pushed, or stared at in a menacing fashion, the armor doesn't do anything and they instantly die. We are in the process of filing a class action lawsuit against the armor manufacturer, Space Defense Incorporated, which we believe is run by another one of Darth Vader's uncles.
Remove all wall lighting. We're really not sure why all the lighting takes the form of vertical strips that run from the floor to the ceiling, but we want to get rid of them regardless. The number of injuries as a result of temporary blindness from walking down a hallway has increased to over 2,281 in the past year alone. We can't get an exact figure on this, as many injuries are left unreported due to the fact that the victim often dies of starvation before finding another human being to interact with.
Determine what 97% of the Death Star does. As mentioned above, we all try to stick to that one room that has the "blow up planet" button. Sometimes we put up tents in there so we don't have to risk leaving and getting lost. We need somebody to explore and chart the 97% of unexplored territory so we can figure out what's in it and what to do with it. We currently plan on stacking a whole bunch of futuristic shipping crates in there, but we're flexible on this plan.
See? The job industry is actually a lot brighter than you initially expected! Unless, of course, you initially expected it to be really bright. Then it's either just as bright or slightly less bright. Regardless, there's no reason for each and every one of us to not have a job in this day and age, especially since the resurgence of supervillians is rising to an all-time high. The only thing you have to lose is possibly your life and your fashion sense, but considering the type of people this website attracts, I doubt anybody here would object to wearing a red cape, blue helmet, and chest armor fashioned from spray painted aluminum foil.
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The Something Awful front page news tackles anything both off and on the Internet. Mostly "on" though, as we're all incredible nerds.