The best dialogue on Occupational Jealousy EVER. You won't believe where I found it.


Occupational Jealousy is a form of envy that happens when someone else in your industry performs a similar role and you feel psychologically threatened, for reasons ranging from  absolutely nothing to personal hangups that become dramatic reality, psychologists attribute this historically to a combination of internal issues and most often self-esteem, and also reproductive biology as a potential indicator to what actions/words/etc make women and men jealous and to greater frequency (physical infidelity vs. emotional infidelity is a classic example from marital counseling).  It's a double dose when two people have it for each other in the same creative industry or company, because it makes it harder for either person to get any work done! And... guess what? If you don't know anyone who has gone through it and is WILLING to admit they get jealous... it can be difficult finding out the best way to deal with it, or at least greater empathy than "quit being a child and get over it." Do web search, you won't find many things written recently, hypothetically since a surge of social media bragging has led to some conceoption that showing any of the range of human emotions other than orgasmic joy are synonymous with "weak".

"Don't you Dare sing!" ©2010 www.amanda-christine.net, acrylic
Guess what- EVERYONE deals with it at some point, to varying degrees with varying deniability and coping ability. and not just artists. Adults. yes. working adults. that's why it is prefixed by "occupational" or "professional".. but for some it's easy to hide or it may just pass like a fleeting thought. Others it may eat at your brain. for. a. while.

But the above rant is not the dialogue to which I refer in my title. Ever watch MTV and VH-1 movies? I mean back when they had more music on the channels and they made more movies than reality shows. There was a little eccentric flick about male models with Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson called Zoolander, which portrayed this theme very well against a sensationalized male supermodel world with some pretty awesome cameos- David Bowie got introduced by song and a special caption.  Anyway, title character Derek Zoolander (Stiller) is envious of rising star Hansel's success (Wilson). Later when, for plot-driven reasons stated in the clip below, he must visit Hansel, the admission of jealousy comes out in reference to their interactions preceding the confrontation.





This seems like common sense. Lots of jobs involve missing out on a promotion or raise, or even sometimes getting "passed over" and going through a "slump" time. Dr. Seuss even wrote about this in Oh the Places You'll Go:

And when you're in a Slump, you're not in for much fun. Un-slumping yourself is not easily done.

For artists, we see each other often in public and at high-profile events and are encouraged to support each other every day, every week, as often as we can- it's good for our careers, the industry, and our local economy in general- and it also keeps artists from looking like the stereotypical assholes we are usually typed as in other movies, like, um... Art School Confidential...which has its own merits, one of which is showing said stereotypes and that they are there, aren't there, and run the gamut... really it's more an individual choice who one wants to be and how they want to present themselves to the world... but like being a supermodel, changing and overcoming the mental wiring is easier said than done.

Remember when I said it's hard to find others who admit this issue? I have scoured the web many times for this topic drawing on old pscyh journal knowledge as to how it applies here and really to see if anyone has written anything that is a good read on the subject.  Most conclude with a string of comments from high horses and ivory towers denying it. Good for them. I needed to write this and I bet anyone who ever wrote one of those articles did too. I will be money it was experienced by any name-drops in Art and Fear, or it wouldn't be suggested as a read after one drops a hint they feel it.
Why did I write this? because I AM SOMEONE who has gone through occupational jealousy. It rears it's head from time to time, it's part of my personality, although now it's fed a lot less than it used to be. I don't mind telling anyone this because it is a lot funnier in hindsight because I have been privy to so many forms- including the double-blind similar to the clip. I could make this a much longer post, but that Zoolander clip is gold for all it says.
Letting Go (detail, ©2012www.amanda-christine.net, oil)

It is the proverbial "they're more scared of you than you are of them" when two creatives meet knowing they have clashing personalities but *might* get along, and then finally realize they can if they just be honest for those 2 minutes. Then they drink some funny tea and have an orgy. Some creative stereotypes are still perpetuated :)


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