Tuesday, November 9, 2010

On the merits, I suck

Well, it's been quite a day.  Due to some ongoing work on the municipal water system, my apartment building had no water for some hours, and even now, ten hours after I discovered this, it's kind of weak, and the hot water is still only thinking about working.  I feel grimy.  Worse, I can't brew my own coffee, which makes me anxious.  I keep coffee close to hand at all times; it's essential work fuel.  I hate feeling like I have to go out just to get my fix.

I schlepped my ass all over Research City today, with some technically positive results: I got a very necessary bureaucratic signature that will make my life easier.  But really, that's all I got done today, aside from a little grocery shopping.  No job applications created; no articles drafted, no book manuscript worked on, no research done, even.  I suck.

Last night, I was chatting with an old friend and colleague at a university here in RC where I've applied for a job.  My friend, who had sent me the job posting months ago hinting that I should apply, mournfully let me know that I probably don't have any shot at this job.  It's not a total shock: there's a thing with some people about some things, all of which I already knew or guessed at.  It's never fun to hear, though, that the hiring committee is likely to throw me into the trash immediately for reasons totally beyond my control.  It has a way of coming through as: You suck.

On a whim, I looked up the CV of another colleague, who is still in graduate school at Hugely Endowed Famous University.  Zi was always something of an overachiever, even compared to our circle of overachieving friends, so I wasn't surprised to see an impressive CV.  I was, however, a little taken aback to see a CV two full pages longer than my own.  More grants, more publications, more organized conferences, more awesomeness.  And zi is still in school!  I fucking suck.  I mean, I feel like I did pretty well for myself at DOU, which has only a fraction of the funds that HEFU has, but...jeez.  When I look at that CV, I can only think: I fucking suck.

So there's the news: I suck, I'm caffeine-deprived, and I'm dirty.  How are you?


  1. I sometimes play that game, too. I've found that people at the really prestigious universities often get things just handed to them merely because they're studying at _______ University or are working with Dr. Fancypants Bigname. Meanwhile, the rest of us scrape and beg and borrow for whatever we can get. Being bitter doesn't really help things, but at times like these (dirty and caffeine-deprived), it's probably hard not to be at least a little peeved.

    Here's hoping for hot water and good hot coffee very, very soon!

  2. For what it's worth, having the longest cv in the land isn't a prerequisite for getting a job. Yes, it helps in getting *certain kinds of jobs* but not having that doesn't mean you suck, it doesn't mean you're not employable, and it doesn't mean that you're doomed to a life of quiet desperation at an unaccredited school or school or something.

    Stop looking at other people's cv's. That way madness lies.

  3. You don't suck! And you can get coffee outside the home, which is always more fun! And prevents stir-craziness! And now that you have Important Bureaucratic Signature, you can go do all sorts of research-y things! Yay.

  4. You have grimy company too--the water thing has been a persistent problem this year!

  5. There's no way that someone with such a fantastic blog and secret job with the CIA can suck!

    Just kidding-about the CIA part, that is. Get your coffee fix and remember that you have this amazing opportunity to research something that you love!