I’m sitting by my lonesome in the Krafted Cup on the last Sunday of spring break of the semester that was supposed to be my last, struggling through Darwinian literary theory (who knew that was even a thing?). I’ve downed a large light roast and the caffeine has kicked in. How do I know? Within 20 minutes, I have 19 tabs open, I have decided to take a stab at humorous writing, and I am unashamedly head-nodding to some really cool vague hipster ambient chillwave. Ya know, Tycho or Bonobo or some shit.
It’s times like these that many grand thoughts and questions (19 tabs worth…) are unleashed downward into a spiraling abyss: When will I ever discuss the evolved, adaptive function of literature with an employer? Fucking never, that’s when. Rather, they’ll ask me if I have “social media skills.” I’ll answer with, “I post clips from ‘Spongebob’ in my statuses sometimes.”
Well, hey! at least there’s that smart, handsome, non-creepy OkCupid guy that asked me out the other night. We’re “seeing where it goes.” In other words, I have my microwave burritos and “The Lizzie Mcguire Movie” ready to go for when he tells me it’s not going to work out. ~Hey now, this is what dreams are made of.~
No, stop, I sound pathetic.
I’m being too negative. Brighten up. Look to the future. You’re only 22! The world is your oyster! So many places to go and people to meet! *Opens 5 tabs about law school and imagines self as the next Amal Alamuddin Clooney* Oh yeah, I got this. I’m an STS major; I’d be perfect for law school. Conflicting interests and ethical dilemmas everywhere! Paradigm!
…Wait…the LSAT? You need that GPA? Uhh, maybe I should just drop out and be a professional WWOOFer or open a coffee shop. Or, no, better, open a Dreaming Goddess spin-off. Complete with spa services and music lessons (but not the mainstream stuff; come only if you’re interested in the accordion or theremin or sitar or bagpipe). There could also be a lounge that plays Tycho or Bonobo. That place would be hip with the youngins.
I give dropping out another ponder. You’re thinking: blasphemous! I’m thinking back to first semester. I took the semester off and went home. I worked two jobs, volunteered, and generally took a time-out from the academic and extracurricular trenches of Vassar. While I missed the kind of autonomy I had here and especially missed my friends (thanks for all the bell ringing pics, guys), there were times where I could see myself getting used to the intellectual break.
As I searched for those jobs, however, I was amazed at how many more doors open once you have that Bachelor’s Degree! What a concept! To a lot of employers, what you majored in matters; but to another lot, it doesn’t. As long as you have that piece of paper, you’re golden. It’s the difference between shelving books for 8 hours a day and being a “program coordinator.” It proves you had the dedication to write analytical papers with fancy words like polemic, or to complete problem sets or lab reports with classmates that made you question your intelligence. That you even sought out your professors in their office hours with your cool, collected exterior when really, you were way intimidated because they went to Harvard and Yale and Princeton and have also probably spoken to God him(her/them/it)self and thus know when you’re going to die.
So, it will be with flying colors that I make it through one more STS class, a thesis and who knows, maybe the LSAT. Then, like I said, I’ll be GOLDEN. Job offers will fall at my feet! Law schools will fight over who gets me! The youngins who want to learn the bagpipe at the Awakened Goddess Lounge will beg for my business acumen. I’ll live in a stylish apartment that I can totally afford and host holiday parties for all the lovely humans I met at Vassar. I’ll be so thankful for my college experience. I much prefer this kind of thought-spiral. The upward kind. The overly-caffeinated kind.
I hope there’s others of you out there that find yourselves tangentially traveling, wondering about your purpose and why you are where you are. Maybe you’re trying to make the most of your time at Vassar or reexamining your choices and the costs with which they’ve come. Or maybe you’re just ready for that next cup of coffee. I know I am.