Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the President to explain to us what the exit strategy is.    The Honorable Governor of Texas, George W. Bush

I hate quotations. Tell me what you know.    Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, May 26, 2005

If I Only Had a Brain

Been hanging out on a blog I ran across the other day, called Left2Right. It's primarily a bunch of somewhat liberal college professors chatting each other up about politics and such, and I find it interesting, civilized and not excruciatingly esoteric. I'm not so sure they're smarter than me, but they have something I don't. They each have a curriculum vitae.

Well, assuming that I'm not likely to run into the Wizard in the near future, I 'm just going to have write my own.


(this means "of life"; a great number of scholars drop curriculum, even though this makes no sense)


Freshman Year: Music education major, generic small Christian college in the Midwest with a kick-ass basketball team. Learned valuable skills such as how to trim steaks for Saga Food Service and how to play "Lady Madonna" on the cello. Learned the best time to turn the American flag upside down in protest was probably not when the Sigma Chi rope pull team is coming around the corner on their daily training run.

A Little More Than a Year and a Half More, I Think: Nondescript regional land grant university where the wind blows off the prairie about 100 miles an hour every day. Obtained an extensive background in blotter verses windowpane, etc., as well as five handed double deck Pinochle. Couldn't decide whether I might be an "ist" or an "ite", and lost focus.

MA, PHD; Tufts University: British Labor History. Okay, I'm making this up, but I know why Tufts can't prove it isn't so.


Microsoft Certified System Engineer: Windows 2000
Microsoft Certified Professional: Exchange
Comp-Tia: A+
Comp-Tia: Network+
Geek Mobile Bonded and Insured


Service Station Attendant: Intensive observation of female human courtship ritual directed at one who is washing subjects' windshields at 3 in the morning. (Reference The Jerk for a description of this activity) Formulated important economic theory concerning possibility of wealth amassing at the rate of $1.10 an hour.

Pepsi Truck Helper: Enhancements to linguistic diversity, including such Teamsterisms as "Get your old, wrinkled ass off the goddamn road, Grandma!" (I cleaned that up!)

Elevator Construction; the Chicago Loop: Three month study of the psychological effects of the Vietnam War while paired with a former Huey door gunner.

Elevator Construction II; the Chicago Loop: Six month study of the psychological effects of being suspended on a scaffold 40 floors up in an elevator shaft with a guy who had 6 or 7 martinis for lunch every day.

Internal Services, Insurance Home Office: Focus on diplomatic skills development; problem solving such as explaining just exactly what I was going to do about the fact the Vice President Smith's desk was 40 square inches larger than Vice President Jones's. Learned you can shit where you eat, but with the big guy's daughter, while driving the big guy's El Dorado down Lake Shore Drive, with the top down, while getting a good buzz on, is probably pushing it.

Under Assistant East Coast Promotion Man; Boston/Cambridge: Extensive study of metropolitan grinder shops (favorite; Harvard House of Pizza on Mass Ave). Marketing emphasis in two parts:

  • spending a lot of money at night clubs and restaurants so the label can mark up the cost deducted before calculating artist's royalties
  • the variety of distribution methods as related to the absence of serial numbers

Second Shift Supervisor; record store; Coral Gables, FL: Brief anger management seminar involving my first and only routine polygraph test.

Director of Claims Clerical; Coral Gables, FL: Detailed assessment of the success of the circa 1970's Florida public school system, as observed in the verbal and mathematical skills of a dozen or so fine young women under my direction. Developed work related stress relief procedure, in particular taking a break from mailing out a couple million in claims checks to god knows where while looking down 12 floors upon the record shop that suspected me of stealing $29!

Fence Foreman; Chicagoland: 27, tanned, ripped and could play the piano. Study?

Chauffeur; O'Hare Airport, Chicago: Sociology emphasis, particularly class conflict. Developed theory that mutual primary desire of all classes is to be home in one's own bed.

Carpenter; Nashua, NH: continuing linguistics study, including 1001 ways to use the word wicked, as in, "This is wicked good bee-ah!"

Realtor; Nashua, NH: detailed two-year study of the social interactions of the female divorced American. Study cut short when, much like a vulcanologist, I got too close to the action.

Fence Foreman (reprise); Chicagoland: 36, tanned, ripped, could play the piano and now single. Study?

Fence Salesman, Chicagoland: In depth, ongoing analysis of good old American (primarily upper middle class) family values―from within their locked doors.


c'est la "vita"


At 5:12 AM, Anonymous michael said...

Hey Don,
It's mike. bob's roommate of the past 3 years, and yes it is 5AM. don't worry we ate all the beans on bob's grad. party
I've been reading your site for awhile. I will start checkin it out at about 2 on my shift at the WI HI Soc. archives and look up and it is close on 2:34.
(i'll look back on a long, grey line of food service positions with the collegial start of office clerical work) but yeah, it's just interesting to think of the positions that people hold (not just work related) as accomplishments. I think my generation cares less for experience, and more about saying they experienced that "or been there" but I wonder if we won't view ourselves as ----clerical assistants ----which led to a clerical position with limited healthcare benefits ---which led to a managerial position with dental to ---upper with optical. who knows. but for what I know, you have a good site.
i felt bad about whatever I said about DePaul, and broth said I might have offended you. i was in that awkward period betwen hungoverness and trying not to be. There is a quote by radiohead from OK COMPUTEr, i guaremanitee, bob probs got it out of the 12 for 1 BMG deals but it goes "ambition makes you look pretty ugly" and the past 2 years I have felt the same way about myself and about my classmates in pre-law at UW. This past week, I have been readin scott turow's "1L" and it makes me think I won't get into any school I want, much less be any happier a person by getting into those schools which I thought would make me feel better about coming from a 4th generation middle class irish taig family. keep writin, I'll keep reading

michael ryan


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