Grim Reaper Wonders If There’s More to Death than Just Work

Ian Zandi
Ian Zandi
July 8, 2021

During a delayed commute on the G train through Queens, the Grim Reaper sat with their thoughts, pondering if there was more to death than just working for death all the time. The responsibilities of The Reaper are strenuous and stressful, often tasked with performing the mundane duties that higher powers avoid. “No one really likes to say it, but I’m playing ‘bad cop’ here. I’m doing all the heavy lifting for The Big Guy to get all the glory.”

When asked about their day-to-day schedule, The Reaper explained its monotony. “It’s the same routine every day. Commute, work, home, commute, work, home. Sometimes I get to see some live entertainment, like a goat sacrifice, but even then, I have to herd the goat’s soul to the afterlife. It’s hustle culture at its worst. At least if I was an Uber driver, I’d be more in control of my wages. The benefits are severely lacking in my position. Don’t even get me started on vacation days.”

The depressing work-death balance for the Grim Reaper is not only felt by the afterlife harbinger, but also by the clientele they serve.

“I was lying in my hospital bed, readying myself to meet daddy Jesus, when suddenly this Grim Reaper fella got stuck trying to crawl towards me through the window,” recalled 87-year-old Cameron Waits, a patient very much still alive at St. Laura’s Medical Center. “Obviously, I just closed the window when they got too close. I felt sorry for ’em – fella seemed really worn out. Seemed like they needed a self-care day or something.”

The Grim Reaper has recently considered unionizing for better conditions. IRS records state that the Grim Reaper is officially employed by three immortal entities — God, The Devil, and Tilda Swinton — but The Reaper claims that they are still not being paid a proper “unliveable wage.”

“You know, a friend got me this gig a while back, and I was thrilled,” The Reaper revealed over a much-needed pint. “I got into this thinking, ‘Ok, maybe this is a different take on the typical service industry job with a chance to move upward in titles eventually,’ but no,” The Reaper said, really opening up about their workplace woes.

“You would not believe how tough it is to get a promotion around here. The higher-ups are constantly breathing down my neck — and I’ll just be honest, at this point, I am looking elsewhere for opportunities. Father Time is finally retiring, and I think I’d be a great fit. The job is in the same field as what I do now, except with way less blame. I’m not taking any time away, just literally noting that it happens. Plus, three weeks paid vacay! Here’s hoping.”