the boredom and the freedom
and the time spent alone.

it's now four o'clock, and i officially finished my first day of "work" (in quotations because i didn't actually do anything today), though i left the office around 1:15 p.m. my boss told me a little bit about the organization and my general job description, and i think i now have a better sense of what goes on down there. as she was talking, though, i couldn't help but think about previous jobs, and how no one ever really showed me or talked to me about what i was supposed to be doing. at the red cross, they howed me my desk and then signed me up for a bunch of trainings. at watsonville high, they told me to show up on monday and wait for instructions. there really ywas no excuse for the watsonville debacle, as they already had volunteers the year before.

so after learning about the organization, they sent me to human resources. it turns out, it's just right across the way from the campus security office. i met sara, the human resources rep, and she definitely had a case of the mondays. we got to talking, though, and i soon discovered why she didn't seem like the happiest person in the world. "i saw on your resume that you had done americorps," she said. "yeah," i said, "i did." "me too," she replied. enough said. turns out, she had actually done three years, and then she got her masters in education. "do you mind if i ask," i said, "but why aren't you teaching?" looking at her, i already knew the answer. "i just got tired of it," she said.

who's teaching these days? only shallow, callous people who can shake it all off at the end of the day, or else superhuman god-like individuals who somehow manage to plow through all the bullshit. i really don't know. aimee, a previous americorps volunteer i met in watsonville, dropped out of the ucsc masters/credentialing program after three weeks. as a teacher, i lasted one week. i read somewhere that most people last only a year, and then they get burned out and leave. instead, they go to law school. they work retail. they get jobs in offices and wake up for the morning commute. they do anything else.

sara, the hr person, asked to see my identification. i showed her my passport. "this looks pretty new," she said. "yeah, i just got it last month," i told her, then quickly added, "i was going to go travel if i didn't find work here, but i just decided i'd work instead." she nodded in agreement. "yeah," she said, "the thing about travel is you either have time and no money, or money and no time." i agreed.

sara seemed very intelligent, sage-like almost, and i felt really bad for her, knowing that human resources wasn't really what her idealistic self once had in mind. the nosy snoop that i am, i asked what she was doing there anyway. "well," she said, "i really wanted to work for a nonprofit, but it was really hard to find work. they usually want someone younger..." i couldn't tell how old she was, but she said she did americorps in '92, so she was probably somewhere close to 40. whatever her age, she was concise and informative - just the way i like my hr people.

when i got back to the office, my boss talked to me a little more about the organization, and she showed me the draft for the new website, expected to launch august 25, the first day of school. it looked sleek and to the point. she then handed me over to emily, who is the program assistant for the center for professional development (cdp), and who also shares a cubicle with me. emily is from illinois; she got her bachelor's in psychology; and she loves horror movies. she briefly went over where things in the office were located, and then we talked about horror movies for probably a full hour. also, she nonchalantly dropped a few "shits" and "fucks" casually into the conversation, and didn't seem to mind that some of the associates in the nearby offices could obviously hear her.

i took the bus home with my $10/month bus pass. now all i need is an apartment.


Tiffany said...

Oh man, I fucking love MGMT. Ashley sent me a care package with a copy of that cd, since I hadn't gotten around to uploading it to my ipod before I left, and now my host brother can hum along to all the songs! Nothing cracks me up more than hearing his rendition of "electric feel."

EasilyEntertained said...

you fool, Leila covered criminally cute:

you're criminally a pervert

ms.meggie said...