Sunday, July the 17th, 2005

(Anywho, for those curious, it’s girlfriend and not friend. And they live together and not not live together.)

(I’ve started saying “why not” a lot after hanging out recently with a bunch of crazy ozzies who’d go about doing the most retarded things, usually after gettng drunk, by prefixing said activity with a “why not”. Though amusing being an observer, this should not be attempted at home.)

Why not?

I’m just going to go ahead and say it. I mean, I am going to admit what is bothering me. It is so freaking multifaceted, I don’t even know where to start. For one, I look around, and most people I know are “happily settled”, or nearly there.

Just what do I mean by that? — I mean they have their fancy real jobs, the 6-figure salaries, the strong relationship with the hot member of opposite sex, the chic wardrobe, and all that sort of thing.

That’s it isn’t it? What we’re all striving for in some form or the other through whatever paths we’ve choosen? The quest to get to a point where we’re—in a “happily settled” sense—finally contented?

And then, I look in the mirror and see me. An aged, incomplete shell of person who hasn’t in any sense “made it”. No real job, no money, alone, not really all that intelligent or learned… you get the idea.

Of course, this gets worse, much worse.

I’m a pretty critical and judgmental person, and when I see people, I don’t see them, or where they are in life, but my idealization of where I presumed they’d be — extrapolating from what I saw in them as potential. This makes it suck so much more, because in my minds eye, I’m the “cool one” who should’ve made it. The exact same folk I’ve mocked and derided for being less intelligent, educated, or capable, are the ones who seem to be making it.

No fancy diplomas, no eons in fancy schools, no inherent-godlike-intelligence, they’re not even particularly fit or attractive, nothing. And yet they drive in that fancy car to that fancy home from that 42nd floor office with that hot woman in the passenger seat.

What gives?

Finally, my absolute “fear of the real world” has resulted in taking refuge for eternity in school, further fuelling my social ineptitude. There is a clear difference between being a student, and defining your life around being a student. My attempt at escapism has resulted in me crossing that line a long time ago.

It’s strange how you need to be on a break and really far away from work to get a clear perspective on how much everyone’s grown, and how static you’ve been. You and your numerous diplomas in plaques.

Which returns us to the web log’s catchphrase — emphatically static.

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10 Responses to “Why not?”

  1. anita says:

    i know how you feel…but at least you have the excuse of being in school. me, i’m just a bum at this point.

  2. D says:

    This catapults me back to 2000. Trust me the supposed social klutziness is endearing to a fault almost.

  3. wahgnube says:

    anita: It’s not an excuse at all. My “goals” and the way I’ve planned to go about doing things dictates that I stay in school for a lot longer — conveniently supposing everyone (including me) will see it as OK to put life on hold while this goes on.

    So the important question this brings up is this: Is my life on hold because I’m in school? or am I in school because I don’t have the balls to handle real life?

  4. wahgnube says:

    D: Endearing, probably yes. But the feeling of catapulting 5 years into the past is exactly my point.

    Nothing’s changed. Absolutely nothing.

    New country, new associates, new friends, new experiences, new hobbies, new found independence, new education, …

    And me? Exactly the same (other than the whole 6 kilos heavier and a little less thick head of hair bit, anyway). I’m just as socially retarded, near sighted, alone …

    It’s like I refuse to, or better, can’t, evolve.

  5. anita says:

    yeah, i understand. “excuse” wasn’t the right word…

    i just think that, for some people (me included), school is easier than the real world. so it is very tempting to “hide out” in school – because as long as you are in school, people view that as being ok – good, even. whereas if you are out of school and jobless, that’s not ok.

    and this isn’t at all coming out in the way that i formulated it in my head, but i can’t remember what exactly i intended to say now.

  6. wahgnube says:

    I think I understand what you’re trying to say.

    All I am saying is, just because people view (as do I) it as being OK, it doesn’t mean it’s OK.

  7. anita says:

    i think it is perfectly ok if you’re in it for the right reasons and if it is essential for meeting your career goals. and even if you’re in it for the wrong reasons, it’s not necessarily a bad thing to do. it can help you buy some time, until you are ready to be out in the real world. i think even my short stint in grad school gave me a little more confidence than i had coming out of college.

    anyway, just my 2 cents. only you know your real motives. and even if they aren’t good…life is too short. if you enjoy being in school, stay as long as you possibly can : )

  8. wahgnube says:

    Granted I come from a social setup where being “highly qualified” is not some luxury enjoyed by “the cool”, it’s necessary just to be average.
    (A grand scale “my penis is bigger than yours” scheme. Replace penis with suitable comparative female anatomy part as needed.)
    Granted wanting to teach at the highest level necessitates having to be schooled at the highest level.
    Granted I am having a blast at the uni and am doing a lot to maximize my time here.

    Given all this and more, I am for the most part in uni for the proper reasons and enjoy being there. It’s just, when I look around and see my friends from school and college who aren’t still in uni and are having a ball as the rest of their lives fall into place, I’m envious that I don’t have all that, as well.

    Basically, I want to have my cake and eat it too. I want a bottomless pan of cake. Cake is good.

    And I’m easily sidetracked.

  9. pUl| says:

    And who is to say that something similar isn’t happening on the other side? For instance, what keeps the “school/college friends who aren’t still in uni” from thinking, “Wow, I’m having the time of my life, but how I wish I also went to grad school!”

  10. wahgnube says:

    But why? In our materialistic society, what is it that we’re all socially tuned to reach out for?

    Money? The cool home? The snazzy wheels? The hot-trophy-spouse? Stellar children? The pet turtle?

    Once you’ve gotten there, or well on the way to getting there (through what ever path), why would you look back at some poor grad student with none of this, and a seemingly lackluster existence and go “man I wish I could have that (too)”?

    (Actually, as I’ve later gone on to point out, I’m just going through a natural phase.)

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