Saturday, January 13, 2007

Life tapped out

Life tapped out
On keyboards
and from veins

up on cane
Dancing for whordes
clout

is known
for poppers and
staffers

the cont(a)[in]g(iousness)[ency] of lepers
Shak(e)[i]n[g] hand
nothing shown

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

One-way mirror

I am now sending out job applications for my summer. Being that Matthew Warner gets this site, and makes it pretty obvious that I am an NYU law student, I know some firms will read this. To be honest, a lot of sentimental stuff got cut because of this very weird specter of restraint.

For me, this blog has always been a one-way mirror. I use it when I am somewhat lonely or detached. I use it to look at how I feel in a harsher light. A light mostly coming back to me, but a lot of it going through the mirror. However, historically I knew the other side were all loved ones. It was easy to be honest because they, as their role in my life would sort of entail, would understand.

Thus, if I had an entry on how I hated where I lived or what I was doing, it was understood that it was a temporal thing. I love New York, but man there were some times where I could have whipped a blog on the opposite. I would not worry about permanence, because thats the nature of a blog where most of the readers are friends and family, they are going to come back.

Now I get all kinds of weird hits. Which is cool, but its not like I am doing anything with them. I have long had some quasi-friends who checked the site based on my writing (at least this is what I was told/took to heart/wanted to take to heart/inferred/fabricated), and I always took that as a pretty decent compliment. The big question mark comes in when someone that will actually judge me will look at the site. And they will see the first entry, and that will be me.

Easily my favorite blog, or, sigh, "vlog" is The Show by Zefrank. I am now watching from the first episode forward and the latest episodes bank, and am about to meet in the "twain."

The reason I like it is manifold, but one is that he has no fear about presenting his personality in reasonable chunks. He has shows where he is just depressed. Shows where he is hung over. Shows where he sings most of the episode. Shows where he does nothing "intellectual." His show is not for new viewers, and he makes that clear. It creates a niche, and a sense of familiarity. An ability to be apart of something "in."

The problem with applying for jobs is I don't want to leave anyone "out." If I have an entry where I am angry and hung over (an entry started, and abandoned, on New Year's Day), then there is a chance that that is who I am when a firm comes google knocking.

This is a whole lot of build up to say, I hate networking.

This may destine me to being a sad commentary, but I think my business skills will always be limited by my unwillingness to network.

The thing is, I love to talk, I love to meet people. The fact is, I might not hate the concept nearly as much as I hate the verb. Why if I compliment someone's aspirations, or earrings, am I networking? Its all about context, and I can't control that context. The concept in isolation is a desire to connect, if fleetingly so, with other human beings. I like this because it reminds us that we project an image, and that image has some good parts. I don't talk to people I think are jerks, but I will gladly talk to someone who seems to care about people.

Usually, people like that. But now, if I talk to a certain set of people, the game is networking, not connecting. Visually those two things are the same but culturally they are worlds away.

In a career finding thing I read, "70-80% of jobs are obtained through network." I have so many problems with that "fact" I don't know where to begin. Notably, how was it derived and what do they mean by networking?

Do they mean what those creepy business school kids do? Like when they hand me cards when I have not met them and shake hands like the harder they squeeze the more I will like them? [Sigh: I don't mean to say all business school kids are creepy, but some are, these are the ones I am talking about...please hire me].

So now I am pandering to firms I have not even sent out things to. I say pander because I am pulling punches. Worst of all, most of the punches are directed at myself, but the game is presenting only your best. If its me and 5 applications I am fine with being the only one with a personality, but not if that personality comes off frail and self-depricating or pretentious and angry.

The worst part about this specter on the other side of my one-way mirror is that I have no idea what it looks like. I am going to try and cast a wide net, but I don't know enough about these firms. I sent out my first job application today and, well, I messed up big (lets not go into how, it was just dumb). The problem: I am new at this. I feel like I am joining a conversation with a faked cough or I am hitting on a girl who is clearly already on a date.

I tell myself that I want to find a firm with a personality, and one that can laugh at itself. One that is driven, but not one that drives its associates into the ground. In other words, somewhere where I actually want to work. But as a 1L, my search is limited by my incredible ignorance of these firms and a table generally slanted against me. If I win the grades lottery, that will help, but I don't need more stress on my grades than my own fear of failure has already put on them.

And on that note of fear of failure, wouldn't you want to hire me to do massive multi-national contract deals?