… is the conclusion a friend of mine drew yesterday. Her argument was that we spend so much time educating ourselves (not minding the work experiences) yet with the jobs we wanted rapidly disappearing we lie fallow—waste from the job market. A pitiless metaphor—maybe. I think she is right.
Last week was particularly challenging for me. I went to a two day conference I had helped organizing. The conference was not even a week after my graduation and of course everyone was congratulating me and assuming how happy I must be—not! A very senior (meaning highly regarded not old) colleague asked me what is next. Well, after having yet again failed to get even a part-time postdoc (that project would have been so much fun by the way) all I could answer was: unemployment.
After two days of these questions I was ready to jump from the next shiny cliff, fly for a couple of seconds and then drown my sorrows in the deep mysteries of the ocean. Maybe even swim with a school of dolphins before hypothermia gets the better of me? Sounded wonderful after having my lack of prospects rubbed into my face 48 hours straight. What is life without purpose anyway?
I never understood these people whose aim it is to never have to work again. What do you do then? Get drunk in ecologically and sustainably irresponsible golf clubs surrounded by plastically and toxin enhanced peers for the rest of your life? Yeah I know: a true workaholic will never quite get this concept.
So after coming back from the conference I spend almost all of this week wallowing in self-pity. Wondering, if people, when they tell me I am brilliant etc, just mean I am really stupid and they would never give me a job like the following translation shows:Where was I? Right self-pity … well, to make a long story short after loads of howling, crying, high-speed-walking-off-frustration-in-the-park-because-I-cannot-afford-the-gym, chocolate over-consumption and I-pity-you-you-pity-me conversations and emails with friends in similar positions, I ended up having a meltdown on the phone with mom. You know where this is going: Got a direly needed ass-whooping (I have no idea how to make that term politically correct so you just have to deal with it) and am now going to hand in my volunteer application with the National Park, ask in our wee antique shop if they give me more hours so I am getting out of the house, and then will finally get back to do all the stuff I have to do for starting my both companies. The idea is once I have things to do again I will be in a good mindset and able to continue to write on my books—oh yes and also some research journal articles and that book chapter I should really be working on.
Maybe I can scout for some cheap textile and do some more sewing, also need a zipper to finish that dress.
There you go! Done with wallowing.