How To Spend The Morning Applying for Jobs

First, start up the laptop and place it on two pillows. Sit cross legged at the base of your bed facing the window. This is your make-shift corner office desk with a view.

Open Internet Explorer to greet the same window you’ve had up all week, with 10 tabs of job listings you’re interested in and half-completed applications.  Close a few tabs out. Keep the Conde Nast Traveler slideshow of Friendliest and Unfriendliest Cities in the U.S. open. Remember what you really want to do this fall.

Poke around job boards for publications hiring writers and interns. Hope to find a few relevant to your interests and attainable considering your status as a recent graduate. You do not have a single year of experience. At least you think you don’t.

Assistant Editor of New Digital Magazine with a Focus on Yoga. Established Author Seeks Social Media Intern. Flight attendant with Delta: Paid Training. Save, save, save.

Make a playlist on Spotify to optimize creativity. Today feels like Cat Power and Feist.

To the tune of “My Moon My Man,” saunter around your bedroom on your tiptoes. Lift alternate shoulders on each beat. Pace the room and using your toes like a claw, pick up socks from the floor. Place them in the laundry shoot.

Study your face too closely in the mirror, notice residue of yesterday’s eye makeup beneath your bottom lashes. Walk across the hall to the bathroom. Wash it off. Splash water on your face and watch droplets running slowly down the drain, through blurred vision.

In an overindulgent, melodramatic moment, see yourself as one of those droplets, weak and powerless, slowly drowning out of sight, never to be heard from again. Then say out loud “You’re ridiculous.” Your post-college existential crisis is becoming too cliché even for you. Return to the bedroom. In the mirror again, pout your lips and raise your eyebrows. Wink at yourself and smile.

Lift up your shirt. Check out how flat your abs are in loose pajama pants. Then consider working out instead of applying for jobs.

Make coffee in your Rutgers mug for good luck and pour a glass of ice water.

Read the application requirements for that MFA program one more time. Reread that article by Anne LaMott you like. Feel good about never bothering to watch the evening news. Wonder why the majority of jobs you look at sound a lot like journalism. Minor panic sets in.

Check e-mail… nothing there. Next to your computer is the bright green cover of Sister Outsider. Skim “Uses of the Erotic,” again. Remember what that professor told you about searching.

Notice the August sun and decide to go outside. Sit under the tree with your dog for a bit. Text a friend to ask how they’re doing. When you realize an hour and a half has passed, feel like you might explode.

Count down the hours until your shift at the restaurant starts, exactly two. Count the money you made working a double shift yesterday, feel a little relieved.

Consider picking up a green juice at the vegan cafe. You have not been taking good care of yourself lately.

Look out the window and hear a sentence, a line, a word come to you like breath. Write it down and find yourself here.


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