Saturday, March 10, 2007


as i try to recover from one of my more egregious errors of the past month, certain sentences i heard last night keep running through my head. i arrived home from work last night around 7:15, having been both unusually productive and surprisingly ambitious in my day's efforts. my roommate laughed as he tried to lure me out to a party across the way and i crawled deep into my sleeping bag to recover, relax, and read the novel i have so desperately torn through. within half an hour, two bowls of cereal and a couple slices of toast were gone, and i had read just enough to blunt the desire to crash.

at the actual party, i showed a best-of-late ability to have a personality. having plunged so often into the frightening depths of aimlessness and indifference, i seem to have failed more than necessary to convince people that i am worth knowing. last night, however, i had the sort of oddly film-worthy experiences that can only mean that i had a really excellent evening. i discussed jazz and other music with a record company employee who promised to send anything my way if i just asked. i cautiously ignored the girl who was relentlessly flirting with several different guys, only to have her tell me that she was in love with me. i managed to deflect this assertion with an anecdote about mj's brother and how he once said something quite similar and meant basically none of it. i was the worst by far at the evening's main video-game distraction and chuckled inside as someone insisted that i'd been brilliant. none of that really compares, however, to my brush with tragic skepticism.

sometimes, we think we know what we're dealing with, only to find later that we missed the true significance of a landmark event. so it was that i became engaged in conversation with a most impressive young lady, missing the biggest hint as it came and thinking i knew exactly what i was getting myself into. she managed to initiate the entire conversation, go out on at least one particularly feminist limb without any hint from me that i'd be ok with that, mention the joy of attending a performance by the band i'd been listening to all week, and generally come off like the most impressive girl i've met in forever. some of this entered into my brain, fairly well marked as important information, and yet i both recognized and rejected the opportunity to get her number before she left. it would have required an extremely obvious effort, but such things are worth it when you meet someone who's unusually worth knowing. so now i've got one beautiful conversation to play over in my head while i try to figure out the least-annoying way of getting contact information for someone i'm not just going to bump into anytime next month. i was thinking, as the conversation began to turn from something that seemed nice to something that seemed potentially awesome, that i probably should get her number. the problem is, i didn't have enough faith in the idea that asking a girl for her phone number at a party is actually an important thing in shaping the next few days or weeks of your life. this is the same problem that leads to me reminisce on the fact that i have never not once applied for a job in a city i have for over a year thought would be an ideal place to live. i am really good at buying awesome sneakers and eating cereal. i am not good at asking girls for their phone numbers or applying to endless endless jobs. in the past six months, i have probably applied for 4.5 jobs (i was rejected by one before i finished the online app), maybe a few more. i have gotten 3 interviews, one offer, and one very disheartening rejection. somehow, this is the effort i have been making to get out of a city i really can't stand. there's a problem somewhere with my faith in the significance of actions like applying for jobs. talking with co-workers this past week, it seems there's a lot more money out there to be made by people with my skills than i would have thought. maybe i don't care about that, but shouldn't i at least hold out until i can find another job in a city i like at a place that will let me wear jeans and sneakers?


SJ said...

become a reporter, it's a jeans and sneaker friendly kind of employment...unfortunately you must also be willing to take a vow of poverty if you should choose this line of work.

seth said...

i'd have to go into radio. half the people in my institute class thought i already was, because the teacher used to joke with the class about my having a radio voice.

mj said...

sethers, get on the ball. though in a way inspiring, your consistent lack of initiative has got to stop.

holy crap, are you going to dave's wedding?

abby said...

In the words of the NY lottery commercial of long ago "You got to be in it to win it." I'm with mj quit talking and start doing. If you really want to get out of NYC, you got to put in some effort. I got out of my hopeless job situation because I worked the networking game, had a killer resume (thanks to mj) and was blessed with not one but two opportunities to join my current firm. Sometimes things don't happen unless you take the initiative.

seth said...

i've had a couple good interviews in the past 6 months, and i did turn down an offer...but somehow i got complacent when i was waiting out the results of those interviews.

i'm not sure i recall when dave's wedding is, but i would hope to be there.