Tuesday, December 22, 2009


I went downstairs in the garage earlier to get some wrapping paper for a last-minute gift. When I leaned down to reach behind a stack of bins, I unexpectedly got a big whiff of my wet suit. This is not always a good thing, but tonight it smelled delicious. Such a distinct smell. All salty and come-hither.

I have plans with a friend tomorrow morning and while driving around today I realized that tomorrow is Wednesday. Crap! I've been waiting all week for Wednesday. It's supposed to be the first day with small enough waves for me. Ugh, I dreaded canceling plans with my friend, but I had to. Well, tonight I checked the surf report and it's back up to 12' tomorrow, so I guess I can retain that friendship. Probably for the best. (Damn.)

I had a really good run tonight, which is saying something. Three miles, couldn't run the whole thing, but I actually had energy the whole way and after, and I kept a good pace. Someone ripped off my iPod Shuffle after I dropped it at the track for about ten minutes last week, so I've been running without music. It's been kind of nice to just hear the normal sounds of life and focus on the rhythm of my feet hitting the pavement.

On the way home from running I got a call with a job offer. It's not a good one - it's the one I tweeted about last week. I called my career life guru in DC and asked for advice, although it came down to what I already know. It always does.

I feel so conflicted about this tonight. I need a job. I budgeted for the whole year and knew January was job-time, and it's January. But I don't want this job. I'm scared. I don't want to be unhappy again. I don't want to be a banker. I don't want to be trapped. I don't want to be like every single person I know who hates their job and complains about it constantly (not you). I don't want to be unhappy. I don't want to have to be fake. I don't want to use the word "passion" about a job that involves debits and credits. I don't even know if I can anymore. I don't want to smile constantly. I don't want to be too tired to run at night. I don't want to wear clothes I can't afford. I don't want to set an example. I don't want to act like I give a single shit about stuff I don't. I don't want to be exhausted all the time.

I'm afraid of what could happen if I don't find a job. I'm afraid of the worst. I hate this dilemma. I wish I had a crystal ball.


  1. I hope you're gonna hang in there and stay jobless. Don't settle for less than what actually makes you whole. Period.

  2. I turned down at least 5 gigs when unemployed after I moved from CA to WA. Sure, it was a different time and different economy but I think if you reread that paragraph you just wrote about all the tings you don't want you already have your answer.

  3. I have a crystal ball, and what it tells me is this: You're eventually going to be fine, but on the way to getting to that smiley-face place you're gonna trip and fall and knock yourself against some walls and collect a set of bruises that will make you look like a grunge rainbow. (I can talk to you like this - I've packed on enough years to qualify as an official ole fart.)

    You mentioned a life guru in DC ... do you have a life guru in Portland, someone who knows the local employment environment? Someone who could begin to match your temperament and talents with what's available there? Why not find one?

    But let's say the worst thing imaginable happens and you run out of money altogether, you're about to lose your home, and the kitty stars eying you like a four-course meal? Grab a job you hate, keep food on the table and a roof over that, and keep looking.

    Hell, girl, it occurs to me you're heading for a breakthrough you don't even see coming. You're gonna be fine. Write me when the sun breaks through ...

    Until then, remember, life is like a surfboard: you try like anything to stay upright on a thin little slab of fiberglass, all the time knowing you're going to fall off the thing eventually; but, hey, with any luck, it will only be water that you hit.

    Isn't that fun?

    Think about it ...

  4. I see your list of "dont's" it's good. Really good. Now, make a list of "do's" and maybe something will click. Something unexpected, something crystal clear.

  5. I can't add anything after readigg Bigezbear's comments... YOU WILL BE FINE!!! Don't settle in if you will hate it, hang in there!