Ancient Pores, Mundane Jobs, Mystical Incantations, and Other Fun Drivel

Nothing throws me into an existential crisis faster than a depressing trip to my university’s career database.

Financial Examiner – No.

Data Analyst – No.

Email marketing specialist – No.

Portfolio Associate – No.

Let’s try this again KEYWORDS: writing, publishing, wine, art, research, editing, afternoon siestas and tasty food, books; TARGETED COLLEGES: liberal arts 

(3 results) 

1. Assistant Broker: “How timely. My life is slowly, painfully breaking.” 

2. Mortgage Loan Underwriting Trainee: “What the hell is ‘underwriting’? The problem is that these cryptic, frigid words don’t exist in my lexicon; I must have foolishly used my one Career Day pamphlet as a place mat. That must be it. A displaced trifold, sure to be covered in faded coffee stains and is therefore filth to the naked eye,  is the source of all this confusion. In some lonely rain vent, a place where hairballs, candy wrappers, and pennies come together to mourn the loss of their utility, words of expertise age and become indiscernible. Like blackened flecks of Hemingway, Sartre, and Tolstoy that hover and mix in a burning library. It ages like a dementia-stricken professor, whose wisdom and intellect excretes from his ancient pores and absorbs into the walls of an austere nursing home. So, no, don’t think so.

3. Investment Analyst: “Perhaps I should go outside and start gathering sticks for the appropriate orifice.”

I, have made a huge mistake. I’ve mismanaged my life. I should have paid more attention in Calculus. Dr. Freckman, you Birckenstock-wearing German genius, why didn’t you hit me across the head with that recluse math dissertation you shelved away? Perhaps a wack from that cumbersome book of knowledge would have leaked a supernatural energy befitting a misguided teenager whose sole intention in high-school was to cavort with baby-faced boys. But surely, teacher of all that that I hate but is relevant in life, you could have hypnotized me with incantations, with 10 abacadabras (rather than 10 bitter Hail Marys), with cruel, frosty truth, so that your good sense would attack my callow dreams like indomitable white cells on a torpid germ.

I could go on, and on…blaming my lack of interest in “practical things” on everything from books to global warming. But let me finally make my position clear: crying about your misfortune is not only pointless, it’s annoying. Stephen King used to be a janitor. William S. Burroughs was an exterminator. William Faulkner worked for the postal service. And a certain Vonnegut spent time as a POW in Nazi Germany. The point is that the only appropriate response to a young college graduate’s plea for “hairp!” (when it becomes clear that their pilgrimage to personal edification is not a stroll but is indeed a hilly, treacherous, excursion met with setbacks, existential questions, and dragon lairs) should be “Yes, it’s hard. But isn’t life grand! Oh, the opportunity, the struggle! It’s the sweet stuff that builds character! It’s the delicious backbone of any good story! I agree, your job sounds worse than Nickleback, but  buy a book if your mind is craving stimulation. Save your money and visit South America if your heart needs nourishment. Just, for God’s sake, stop complaining and live, live, live!”

I believe I have had too much coffee today.


2 responses to “Ancient Pores, Mundane Jobs, Mystical Incantations, and Other Fun Drivel

  1. There’s such a thing as too much coffee? Oh, and that loan underwriting thing? Don’t do that. I know someone that does. It kills your soul, rather quickly even.

    • I can say, with all the sincerity in the world, that I will never do the loan underwriting thing.

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