Tuesday, December 19, 2006

"I want a new drug..."

Maybe it's been the inappropriately mind-numbing hug of the holiday retail season here in New York--one which allots me 40+ hours a week of which to watch my boss' bank account inflate to national debt eradicating levels--maybe it's coming to grips with the fact that the notion of a "Christmas bonus" is merely something which is fretted over by Clark Griswald in "Christmas Vacation," or quite possibly it's just that stacking books vertically on tables is neither economically or emotionally fulfilling, but I've been entertaining the thought of seeking more gainful employment of late. When I first moved to the grand illusion that is New York City about a year ago I spent a month scouring employment pages looking for work. I quickly gave up on every 20-something's internet resource for such things--the mysterious and sexy Craigslist--after seeing postings that read (and I'm not making this up): "Helicopter pilot with helicopter" and "Best Selling Novelist Wanted." Rather than plod my way through endless ads for unpaid internships or positions in the highly glamorous flyer/street-soliciting field I intend to heavily market myself to some lesser-known industries that would certainly necessitate someone of my highly resourceful caliber and moral candor.

Job 1: Gun Shooting Range Attendant

While I have a limited relationship with fire arms, mainly BB guns and .22s at Boy Scout camp in 90's, I feel every confidence that I can lovingly distribute ammunition, rental weapons, targets, and hearing saving ear muffs to what I'm sure is a culturally and intellectually diverse clientele. Returning home at the end of an enriching and stimulating day of helping citizens blare away at paper targets adorned with human shaped silhouettes I will crack a cold, non-imported beer brewed by the humblest of breweries and curl up with the relaxing knowledge that a small percentage of my regions gun-totters will more successfully administer a kill shot next time they are presented with opportunity to do so.

Job 2: High Rise Window Cleaner

I remember reading a classified add in Greensboro, North Carolina's error-ridden daily paper, The News and Record, for a company hoping to employ a person to clean the exteriors of the unassuming downtown office buildings. The pay was exceptional (in the neighborhood of $20/hr down the street and two blocks over from Health and Dental Benefits Ave.) and I almost sent in an application despite being terrified of heights. Perhaps wearing the tightly secured hat, or helmet, of a high rise window cleaner in New York City would help me conquer my phobia, or at least give my co-workers something to laugh at as I uncontrollably squirm and weep at 70-80 stories above street level. Maybe they just need someone to drive the truck to the work site and be waiting with coffee and cheese sandwiches when the rest of the crew returns to the sweet, sweet surface of the Earth.

Job 3: Psychiatrist's Receptionist

My good friend Mike is currently making preparations to begin this doctoral work in psychology. I'm really proud of Mike for this. I met this fine gentleman when we were thrown together freshmen year in the prestigious and architecturally shameful halls of Hillman Dormitory at Emory and Henry College. I eventually left Emory and Henry after my sophomore year (I also spent rooming with Mike) but we've stayed in touch, and close friends, over the years and one of things he has mentioned in the past few months is about the eventual practice he would like to start. This got me to thinking that maybe I could work the front desk, schedule appointments in a large ledger, scurry around with manila folders, and check clients in and out. I mean if nothing else I would have a fantastic time trying to guess who was suicidal, manic-depressive, suffering from "personal demons" at the hands of a plethora of vices available to us, the modern human, and create a points system to award myself for correct wagers on a person's mental illness. I would call this game "Guess the Wealthy Persons Problems" and would hangout around the water cooler waiting for the doctor in the afternoon with carefully prepared records of my highly informed waiting room diagnosis and taunt him/her with the fact that I am drastically under educated in comparison, and still know what "selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor" means. Then I will ask for a raise.

Job 4: Street Sweeper

As most rappers will tell you, "It's real out on the streets," or "There's no such thing as criminal justice. This is street justice . . ." Etc. With as much talk as the streets get I think being the lucky individual to clean such a cultural muse would be the noblest of undertakings. If I manage to perfect this art perhaps Bed-Stuy will one day be adorned with a statue bearing my likeness holding my dearest possession: A broom. I don't really know where I'm going with this, but at least I'd be outside on pleasant afternoons and I could deflect the elementary school taunts off of the kid that I was when I was eight years old onto me, the poverty line, municipal employee . . . or maybe I just like the feel of Dickies against my skin. It's incendiarily sublime!

Job 5: Cross Country Truck Driver

Maybe the best route for me to take is that of the loner. Forget friends, women and the like--I'm married to the road. Bandying across state lines with only diesel fuel and no-dose to accompany me I will impose my own eruditions and 2am epiphanies onto the thematic truths of the song "Convoy." I will arrive at my trans-continental destination in a grizzled, pedagogic, and timeliest of fashions. I will always allow faster traffic to pass me on the left and my flawless safety record will be heralded by all of my beer-gutted peers. There will be no truck stop too greasy, too unclean, or under-stocked in novelty items to be graced by my eighteen wheels of glory. When the time comes to hang-up my unironic mesh cap and belt buckle, I will settle down with a woman I'm sure will bare a striking resemblance to Emmy Lou Harris in the mountains of Virginia, grow a casually rural beard, and write painfully acoustic songs that steal chord changes from The Band. My lap steel guitar player will be named "Tiny" due to his shocking corpulence, and the steering wheel with the metal ball on it will hang from my rustic home's wall, which my Emmy Lou Harris-like wife will catching me staring cloudy-eyed at as the sun rises over Appalachia, knowing that my heart will ever be cruising at 65 mph across I-40 towards to the sunset.

If anyone out there has read all of this, and can make my new career a reality, please contact me through this website concerning my future employment by your company. My cover letter can be found in the archives of this very blog under “Can You Take Me Hire Enough?” and I am more than willing to send any other materials you may need in regards to determining salary offers etc.

Hope everyone has a nice holiday doing what you're doing.



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