Friday, August 12, 2005

The Fall

I was reminded this morning of a former incarnation of myself when I got an email from a listserv that I belong to called, “Princeton in Hollywood.” As the name suggests, the list serves to unite Princeton grads of the Hollywood variety by allowing them to ask questions of one another, post jobs or ask if anyone knows of a job for someone with his qualifications. These career networking lists are truly an amazing resource and as a person who has posted questions and jobs there myself, I’ve also been consistently impressed by the nature of responses I’ve gotten.

But a posting today by a 2005 graduate actually made me cackle. The subject line wasn’t particularly out of the ordinary, it just read, “Recent Grad Seeks Employment.” Well, I thought, good for this kid for figuring out so early that networking, especially in Hollywood, is the only way to work it. Unless you’ve got an abundance of talent that is, and by talent I mean tits. And no, I’m not bitter. Unless by “bitter” you mean “teet-free.”

But what made me snort Sugar Pops through my nose was the opener, which I quote here:

After six weeks of emails and phone calls I've unfortunately not been able to secure employment. (I know it's a tough town.)

The kid actually thought six weeks of job hunting seemed an intensely long an unreasonable period of time for someone with no experience—but a kicky degree!—to go without employment. Truth is, though, I don’t fault this person at all because I used to think EXACTLY the same thing. Why it practically made me misty-eyed to read the posting (or perhaps that was the Sugar Pop lodged in my sinus cavity.) But his sense of entitlement and dewy expectation brought me back to the days when I believed all traffic lights would turn green for me, too; when I expected despite infrequent play, I’d still win a decent-sized lottery, and Mr. Right would fall at my feet because the scent of unadulterated genius is an aphrodisiac more potent than mussel textured rhino horn.

I’m not mocking this 2005 graduate for his wonderful sense of expectation. After being out of college for ten years, having adopted a policy (especially on blind dates) of keeping expectations pegged at curb level, I’m just wondering if there’s anyway to regain a blissed-out feeling of entitlement. Or have I gotten a one-way ticket out of the Garden, forever damned by that controversial figure Eve, the vixen who said, hey, screw these rules, I need to find shit out for myself, and it’s my way or the highway. Eve, the girl who wanted to gain her own knowledge, dammit, the woman with tiger paws tattooed on her chest.


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