Much of the recent silence you’ve been noticing is because I’ve been busy tying up loose ends, and attempting to return to some semblance of normalcy. It’s proving harder than I expected to get out of “technical writing” mode and into “daily whiner” mode, but I hope to get there soon. For starters, I’ve indefinitely shelved a bunch of nascent entries that soon turned very geeky.
Working feverishly against my quest to just chill and focus on other things, the higher-ups have all decided to jump on the “You’ve got to try this faculty position, it’s right up your alley. Ooh, and this one, and oh, that one too!” bandwagon. Honestly, I don’t believe I’m nearly ready for a step such as this—besides, I have so much else to sort out in my sorry little life—and that’s why I’ve opted for the Cambridge gig. I’m looking for some breathing room, and I’m hoping it will afford me some interesting opportunities, like getting to tour parts of Europe.
There was one thing that came up during a related discussion recently that I wish I’d known and followed in other aspects of my life. At least, in one. Someone sagely mentioned that I ought to try for interesting positions—whether or not they are exactly what I am looking for. The experience that I’d gather while interviewing, giving talks and generally going through the process a few times would allow me to hone my act; allowing me to really impress future higher-ups when I’m trying for a position at a place I really want to be.
It turns out, the same thing is true of talking to women.
Spending ages closed up because no one around fancies you enough to evoke any emotion, or even the need to spark a conversation, is the perfect way to rot your (already meagre, in cases such as mine) communication skills. And when the cutest, sweetest woman comes along, you will botch the encounter up because you don’t know what to do. She’s clearly trying hard to nudge you along and make things comfortable for you, but you end up blowing it anyway; constantly shooting her down with your honorary ogre-worthy charmlessness.
Perhaps if someone had been as gung-ho about my social life as people are about my academic life, I’d have been constantly reminded to try my hand at things—even when they don’t seem to matter—so I’d be ready for when they really did.
I wish I were bright enough to manufacture a reason to see her again.