I daresay that my math teachers would hang themselves out of disappointment and frustrations if they happened to stumble upon my ‘algebra equation’.
Pardon me for the rather queer ‘formula’, but this is the simplest way I could put in words to describe the misconception of the term ‘freelance’ , especially in Malaysia.
I am a freelancer myself. Freelance Editor cum Writer. People often ask me what I do for a living as I am quite flexible in how I manage my time. I could go out anytime I like, do things spontaneously as long as it’s within one or two hour notice and many more.
It irks me to no end when I told people that I am a freelancer and working from home, they would negatively assume that I am not working and all I do day in, day out, is shake my arse at home. Bloody brilliant indeed.
I am not quite sure what is wrong with Malaysian in general, but if you tell them that you are a freelancer, they would automatically assume that you are not working, period, no arguments.
This is absurd! And it most definitely annoys me. I am more than sure that this does not only apply to me, but many other men and women in Malaysia as well. Some people who are SOHO workers are accused of being a lazy bum as well.
Bloody hell, what is wrong with Malaysians in general? As long as you tell people that you’re a freelancer or a SOHO worker, people would either look at you with disdain, and almost disgusted that you are not slaving in the corporate office from 9am-5pm. And then the talk and lecture on ‘you should stop bumming around at home and get a job’ would start.
Malaysian had a rather twisted mind. As long as you are not working in an office, there would be possibility of people accusing you of not working. First, freelancers are associated with lazy bums who are not working and does nothing but wasting away at home or loitering the street during working hours. What’s next, I truly wonder? Teachers are accused of not working too ? Well… teachers do not work in office… why not accuse them of that as well?
Malaysian says the darndest things. I’ve seen many men who are freelancers and doing business of their own accused of not working as well, just because they don’t have an office to go to each day and night. Just take a look at the case below, written in nastily broken English, or rather, Manglish.
A man and his wife picks up their kids together in school everyday, and it happened to be during regular working hours. This is what will happened:
Kaypochee Housewives: Eh, how come ah, you both everyday oso pick up your kid together? Both of you not working wan ah?
Husband: I’m a freelancer. So is she.
Kaypochee Housewives: Ohhh, you both are not working ah? So where does your money come from?
A man who is doing his business on a small scale picks up his children from school at around 2pm every damn day.
Kaypochee bitch: Eh, how come you everyday oso come and pick up your son/daughter yourself? You’re not working ah?
Man: I’m working for myself. Doing small business.
Kaypochee bitch: But everyday you so free wan worr, can pick up your kids. Nonid to go office wan ah?
Man: I’m working for myself wan ma, working from home. The home is my office.
The bitch started to act smart at this point of the conversation.
Kaypochee bitch: Aiyohhh, you’re a househusband, say early la…I know wan la your kind. Haiyorr, mister, you cannot like this. Why you let your wife work and you stay home to jaga the kids? Men should go out and work wan ma. Get a job, dun just stay home. need me to recommend some job for you bo?
A woman who is a freelancer receives a call from her housewives friends. They asked her out for a shopping session when she’s having a project that needs to be submitted soon.
Cao Cibai Bitch: Come, let’s go shopping. Got sale wan worr, very rugi if dun go and grab those stuff! Dun just stay at home and rot nia. Must go out, shopping, chill out, socialize…
Woman: I can’t go out. My workload piling, I have to finish up my work first. The submission date is tomorrow.
Cao Cibai Bitch: Haiyorr, I don’t understand you la. You’re housewife only, why bother la… those work can do later…your husband won’t die wan la if you dun cook one meal for him! Ask him to eat out la! Simple nia!
I think, the above scenarios is rather common in our conservative and narrow minded society.Â Most men and women who chose to be a freelancer would at least encounter at least one person who would mistook them for a lazybum who does nothing but rot at home.
Some people really do not understand the concept of freelancing. So, it is time to learnÂ and brush up some English after reading the awfully rotten conversation in the scenarios above.
working for yourself
work independently and on temporary contracts rather than for a long-term employer
freelancer: a writer or artist who sells services to different employers without a long-term contract with any of them
- mercenary(a): serving for wages in a foreign army; “mercenary killers”
So basically, a freelancer, freelance worker, or freelance is somebody who is self-employed and is not committed to a particular employerÂ for longterm. The term was first used by the late Sir Walter Scott, the writer of Ivanhoe to describe a “medieval mercenary warrior” or “free-lance”.
Fields where freelancing is common include journalism, journal publishing, and other forms of writing, editing, copyediting, proofreading, indexing, copywriting, computer programming and graphic design, consulting and translating.
Freelance practice varies greatly. Some require clients to sign written contracts, while others may perform work based on verbal agreements, perhaps enforceable through the very nature of the work. Some freelancers may provide written estimates of work and request deposits from clients.
Payment for freelance work also varies greatly. Freelancers may charge by the day, hour, or page or on a per-project basis. Freelancers may earn or may not earn big amount of money, but that is another story.
I’d like to stress it here is that when someone mentioned that they are freelancers, that would mean that they do have a job, and they are not shaking their bloody asses at home, waiting for money to drop from the sky.
Some people chose to be a freelancer for many reason. Flexibility with time is one of it. Some mothers, or even single parents might choose to do freelance work as it would enable them to spend more time and their small children and whatnot, so I’d appreciate it if all of you out there stop accusing freelancers of being lazy bums who knows nothing but rot at home. Freelancing might not be a great career prospect to some, but to most, it is rather rewarding, as when one chooses to be a freelancer, they are completely in control of their time, and they get to spend more time with their family.
Cleffairy: Not sure what certain words mean? Use the dictionary. Speechless? Use the thesaurus.