Monday, August 23, 2010

The path to the dark side

Seeing as I am probably going to have to work late tonight, I figure I can take some time out to do a blog. And by blog I mean whine. I cannot convey how much I hate my life right now. See, got right to it. No wasting time with niceties. This is going to be a gloom and doom post, if you're not interested in pathetic expressions of situation, I suggest you go elsewhere.

This particular state of oh-god-kill-me set in last night in class as sitting directly behind me was Tweedledum and Tweedledee. I'm not even kidding. Constantly giggling and chatting quietly to each other during the lecture, and making the sort of comments to actual discussion that made me want to turn around and glare at them led me to the realisation that holy crap, I'd become on of those people. I was also so short-tempered that I kind of blew up over The Da Vinci Code which was our set text. I've only read it once, back in Year 11, but I remember being completely incapable of putting it down. Of course in class it started out with the 'let's discuss how terrible it is' vibe and then the ten million dollar remark that it was meant 'for the great unwashed.' Fucking literary snobs. In my opinion, when analysing the success of a book such as The Da Vinci Code, there is no point looking at it from the point of view of 'I am a Masters student, hear my theory roar!' Put yourself in the shoes of your average person who just reads for enjoyment and then analyse why it worked. Sure it's not War & Peace, but what average person wants to read that? This then is precisely the view point I took. Screw it, there is a tendency in educational institutions where people will harp on about something being bad merely because that's what they think should be done - let me tell you something, they all wish they could sell as well as Dan Brown - or JK Rowling, who is another author that gets knocked all the time at uni.

Jealousy's the cousin, the cousin of greed.

Rah. It wasn't that bad though, they seemed to concede the point after discussion. I'm just particularly touchy because I have put up with four years worth of thinking along those lines. Which brings me to my original point, for the first time ever I actually felt over uni. Completely over it in the can't-wait-to-get-out-of-here way. I think it comes off the back of the feeling that none of the subjects I'm taking this semester can really teach me anything new. I've taken so many writing classes that, while popular fiction approaches it from a different angle, it's just beating the same drum really. And Theory & Writing is in essence the same framework as Culture & Poetics and my Honours Writing Workshop.

Now, arguably this is what a Masters program is for, building upon your existing knowledge to augment a wider understanding of different issues. That'd be fine....if I wasn't also working full-time. I don't have the patience to spend three hours a night essentially looking at a familiar landscape with new glasses, I don't have the time to really engage with eighty pages worth of reading every week...and as a result I fear I'm getting nothing new out of the classes. An attitude problem on my part, I admit, but I don't know what I can do about it. I just don't care.

Then there's work - ugh. Loathsome. That is all. I absolutely loathe it. I don't know how I am expected to get through this kind of work load every single month, it's fucking insane. For one magazine I have 25 editorials in one section, 8 in another, a business profile, and 10 in yet another. And because the ad guys sell late and clients are idiots, I am still to receive material for 16 of these - and it's deadline on Friday. Plus three introductions need to be written for the separate sections. Yeah, you think, that's not so bad, what are you complaining about? Keep in mind this is just one magazine, I have two others as well and I am supposed to update the website. It wouldn't even be so bad if it wasn't for the fact that I am also the lackey, so it's not like I can just sit here and bang it all out in five hours. Oh and of course that hinges on clients actually supplying information. My head cannot meet my desk hard enough to express my frustration. It just cannot be done.

So anyway yes, the combined elements of work and uni (even though I know my feelings towards uni are symptomatic of my feelings toward work) has left me with a general deflated outlook on my life as a whole - considering that 90% of my life consists of work and uni, not all together surprising. And I know this is taking a toll on me too because my hair is in an absolutely terrible state - sounds weird, but my hair is always the first thing to go. I just cannot believe that this is my life - that I have done this to myself. Four months ago I had a cushy part-time job, and sure I may not have had paid leave, but I had free time. Honestly, what the hell was I thinking? Actually, I know what I was thinking, the same thing my mum keeps telling me, that'd I'd learn a lot and it would help further along the track....but first I have to get further down the track. Groan.

Still a year, over a year of this, of every month going through this exact same thing again and again. I fear if the frustration doesn't kill me, the mediocrity will. I'm hoping that having something to work towards - a proverbial light at the end of the tunnel - will get me through it relatively sane. Just knowing that there is an end. Not quite as soon as I'd maybe like, but it's there. The very longest I have to stay here is 64 weeks aka 447 days - only 320 of which are work days, excluding public holidays and time off (I think, I don't know, my math is pretty dodgy.) And then....the great unknown. I cannot imagine anything better. Speaking of days off, I'm taking two off next week to go to Aussiecon, so hey, I guess it's not all bad.

So that's the blah blah blah woe is me, 'I better do well in this degree regardless of all this or someone will get hurt' nonsense out of the way. Scott Pilgrim review to follow later.

Music: None, forgot to charge my iPod
Mood: Frustrated

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