Apropos of a delightfully snarky conversation with a friend…
FRIEND HAS RECEIVED AN INVITATION to her college reunion this fall. She has no interest in attending, but has the opportunity to be included in the alumni directory.
She would like that.
To do this she has to fill out an online form telling ye olde university details about who she is now. The form will not be accepted unless it is filled in completely.
Friend, like me, graduated from a liberal arts university. Hers, Methodist. Mine, Lutheran.
Friend, like me, majored in something to do with words. Hers, Romance Languages. Mine, English Literature.
Friend, like me, graduated from college and never returned to her hometown, instead choosing to make her way in the big bad world on her own.
Friend, like me, received almost no career counseling while in college. Instead she’s had many jobs, but none that suggest a specific title showing the summation of her work accomplishments*.
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THE PROBLEM, AS WE SEE IT, is that Friend is unsure about how to describe herself on this ridiculous form that will ONLY be accepted if she fills in ALL the blanks.
Does she take the dutiful route and tell this university, where she received a great classical education but had no help finding work, about ONE of the things she’s done? That is, does she say she’s an Interpreter, even though she did that briefly?
OR should she be more irreverent, feeling no need to divulge anything specific about her work history to this institution that provided no career guidance. That is, does she say she’s a Woman of International Mystery?
I relate to this problem.
I know that when I’ve been forced to fill in forms like the one Friend is dealing with, I waiver between saying I’m a Writer or a Kept Woman. Both are apt, more or less, and satisfy the nosy computer system.
So what say you?
IF you were in this situation wherein you only needed to fill in the blank as a means to an end AND you felt no loyalty to the university from which you graduated…
Would your answer be sincere or flippant?
Do you consider yourself mischievous at times?
And if so, how does that make you feel?
* If you’re a doctor or a lawyer or a teacher or an accountant [or whatever], you’ve not had to deal with this situation. But for those who have wandered through life working at various jobs, contributing to the GNP in our own ways, this can be problematic.