Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The shakes

Predictably, I am now a bundle of nerves.  The minutes tick by without a response to my inquiry to the school, and I have to start getting ready for my interview with the second school.  It's hard to know what to do, since I don't want to come off half-assed in the coming interview, but I'm simply too desperately afraid of disaster to rely on getting the job with the first place until the contract has been inked.  Remember my philosophy: things could go horribly wrong at any time.

I've had moments like this before.  I guess I'm handling this current stress better than those earlier episodes.  But man, it's hard being an anxious basketcase.  Why doesn't the school respond?  Don't they know that I am a very special snowflake whose every passing thought must be attended upon without delay, and the functional center of the universe?  (Whoa, so that's what it feels like to be a college student nowadays!)

On the other end of my craziness spectrum, is it reasonable to hope that perhaps the response is delayed because they're actually looking for money under the couch cushions for my moving expenses?

This is stressing me the fuck out.  I hate bargaining from a position of weakness.  I'm all but literally shaking with fear that I have made a miscalculation by not just jumping on the job and saying, "Please send the contract now!"  And how do I know that my email came across as appropriately enthusiastic?  (I tried to walk that fine line between enthusiasm and irritating bubbliness — you know, the kind of email that overuses exclamation points because the writer feels no confidence in clear prose to communicate emotions or thoughts.)  So many things could go wrong! AAAAaaaaaaaargh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I've said it before, and no doubt I'll say it again: someone slap me across the face.


  1. Don't forget that you likely e-mailed them in the afternoon here, and they may not have had a chance to find the answers before close of business. It's currently almost 8 AM Eastern Time. Give them a few hours before you panic. I think the other end of your craziness spectrum is more plausible.

    Breathe and sip your scotch, DK. You will be fine!

  2. Hold tight! Don't forget the time difference and the fact that the whoever it is probably has a zillion things to do. But go ahead and have a drink. :)

    And see if you can calm down enough to do your work and get your interview ready. Oh, and if you still need something to pass the time, I have plenty of grading you can do for me. ;)

  3. You're not bargaining from a position of weakness; it just feels that way because negotiating is stressful--and it's always stressful, because the other party always has something that you want and you fear losing it. (Trust me: I just went through two rounds of negotiations on a house!)

    Remember: YOU have something THEY want, too. They might actually not have a back-up hire if you don't take this job, or getting one might require new interviews, which could be tricky this late in the term. Yes, the money's on their side, but departments can feel desperate, too, esp. when they're not really the ones that control the purse strings. I'd assume the chair is consulting with the dean, and that accounts for the delay.

    In any case, bon courage! And knock 'em dead on your other interview!