You'll find most people don't set foot outside their own heads much.

Jul 24, 2006
Shortly before I graduated, one of my favorite college professors gave us some job hunting advice. When you go to your interview, she said, don't bring your resume; it makes you look nervous and unprepared. Instead, bring some Raymond Chandler. You might be nervous about your interview for the first half-page, but when you reach a sentence like, "He stood out like a tarantula on a slice of angel food," your worries are insignificant next to the glorious strangeness of Chandler's prose.

I haven't had a chance to test this theory yet, as I haven't gotten to the interview stage yet, but looking for a job is nearly as stressful as the interview, isn't it? So to relieve that stress, I've been re-reading Terry Pratchett. Pterry gives you the same benefit as Chandler -- you can be going along all twitchy and nervous but then you hit a line like "A key to the understanding of all religion is that a god's idea of amusement is Snakes and Ladders with greased rungs," and then how can you worry?

Of course, I get an extra benefit from Pterry personally in this whole job-hunt-stress-relief game; I have the unfortunate posession of a degree which does not imply an obvious career. That is, I could go to grad school and get my PhD in anthropology and then I would have an obvious career, but I don't have a burning desire to become either a teacher or a specialist in corporate workplace design, so that path is a little less rewarding than it could be. I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up. This is a problem when looking for any job that pays more than $6.50 an hour, and occasionally slightly depressing.

Except I do know what I want to be when I grow up; I want to be Granny Weatherwax. I adore the witches in Pratchett books. I love Magrat's fluffiness which turns into a reasonably practical stock in trade (with a bit too many crystals for the older witches), I love Nanny Ogg's hedgehog song, I love Granny's "I aten't dead" sign. I love the way Granny thinks that believing in gods only encourages them, even if they do really exist; I love the way she has decided that the best way to go about things is to give people what they know they really need, not what they think they ought to want; I love the way she won't let a shiny ball of rock get in her way if something needs doing at the wrong phase of the moon.

And she's cranky and controlling and mostly illiterate and very distrustful of Forn Parts. Well, there might be some improvements to be made. But at least I'm setting reasonable goals for myself, right?

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