Post-College Flow Chart of Misery and Pain

It’s Friday (insert insufferable internet tween sensation song here)!  After such a rough week last week, this week has been such a wonderful reprieve.  I’m heading into a weekend full of friends and frivolity, so it makes sense to share a little tongue-in-cheek pain and misery before I go:

Many thanks to dedicated reader and dear friend Jordan for sharing this with me.  Have a great weekend and remember, you can always catch me on Twitter or email me directly at postcollegiateblog {at} gmail {dot} com.

In Today’s Obvious and Soul-Crushing News

Anyone who has graduated from college in the last five years will be not-shocked-at-all to learn that the bachelor’s degree that you worked so hard for (assuming you define work by drinking a lot and studying a little) and racked up thousands of dollars in debt for is not special at all.  That’s right – you are just one of millions upon millions of young 20-somethings with a bachelor’s degree and it will do next to nothing in helping you find a job.

“But wait!” – you cry – “I made a smart decision after finishing my bachelor’s in Televisionary Studies at Elite Liberal Arts College and obtained a Masters in Sitcomery/Tumblr Marketing.”  Oh, poor little graduate school-attending fool – that degree is also worthless as well.  According to the New York Times (harbinger of bad news for postcollegiates), the job market is now flooded with young people desperately grasping master’s in their hands.  To put it into numbers, 2 in every 25 people over the age of 25 have a master’s – the same proportion of people who had bachelor’s degrees in the 1960s.  Again, not surprising if you’ve been to a happy hour any time in the last five or six years but depressing numbers all the same.

So, to recap the things you already knew:

1.   A bachelor’s degree is meaningless but you still need to drop some serious dough to get one.
2.  You probably won’t get a job with that bachelor’s, so you need to either marry rich (fingers crossed!), live at home forever, or get a master’s degree.
3.  Even your master’s degree is pretty meaningless but you still need to drop some serious dough to get one.
4.  We all sit and weep awhile.
The full article is worth a full read, especially if you want little nuggets like the fact that even MBAs are too broad to help you land a job now or the prediction that in 20 years, janitors will need PhDs.  Or, you know, you can just go cry in a corner for a bit.

A Poem Is Never Finished…

Only abandoned, as Paul Valery once said.  I’ve had poetry on the mind lately, in part to some wonderful literary conversations with my roommate, the literary scholar, and in part to a wonderful blog started by a former roommate which deals in humorous and touching haikus.

My Life in Haiku features daily haikus about the life and times of Abernathy Q, friend o’ the blog and all-around awesome lady hero.  Each day brings a new haiku, a smile to my face, and a spark of inspiration.  She accepts submissions, so consider putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and sending your own 17-syllable-words-of-wisdom.

In honor of Abernathy and her haikus, which have brought me endless amusement in the past few weeks, here are a few of my own haikus, expired by my own misadventures in postcollegiate life:

Spent four years at school
Graduated with honors
Now I make copies

Met very cute new boy
Not into social networks
No online chatting!

Used to want to save
The world; make a difference.
Now want 9-to-5

Friends all seem happy
Great jobs, money, and hot men
I hate my own envy

Changing preference
For men in their mid-thirties
Sex is much better

Only have twenty bucks
Spent fifteen at happy hour
Will not tell parents

My Life Lately
Still not sure about
Vita Abundantior
But I am trying!

Music Monday – Steve Martin

As evidenced by my lack of posting, I had a bit of a rough week last week.  Between major shake-ups at work (which had me momentarily fearing for my job security), a tough review of my finances, tension amongst friends, and what felt like endless bad news from the other side of the world, I felt so weighed down by the trappings of my semi-adulthood.

Luckily, the weekend brought a reprieve.  Rifts were healed, plans were set into place, good friends were abundant, and Sunday was spent enjoying one of my favorite leisure activities – swimming and boating at Lake Anna.  I came away from the weekend with a slight sunburn (curse this Irish skin) but feeling refreshed, refocused, and more upbeat than I’ve felt in weeks.

Whenever I enjoy a great lake day, I always seem to instantly set my iPod to banjo music – something about being in the wilds of Virginia makes me yearn for the old-fashioned charm and foot thumping joy of the banjo.  And when I’m feeling particularly upbeat, there’s no one I enjoy more on the banjo than Steve Martin (and the Steep Canyon Rangers.)  Martin is not only one of my favorite actors, comedians, singers, and authors, but he’s also wicked on the banjo, combining lighting fast picking with lyrics that always bring a smile to my face.

For today’s Music Monday, in  hopes of sustaining this infectious good mood, I hope you’ll enjoy Steve Martin’s banjo-fied version of King Tut, a comedy classic.  I dare you to hear Martin intone that “he gave his life for tourism” and not chuckle.


King Tut – Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers

Friday Frivolity: How to be a Hogwarts Grad

Oh, Harry Potter.  Much has been written on the Internet recently about our generation’s connection to the boy wizard and his adventures as the final film of the series debuted in theaters this week.  I won’t bore you with my own relationship to the series except to say that I discovered the books while babysitting a particularly bright, Hermione-esque young ward and I was instantly hooked.

In that spirit, enjoy another great Thought Catalog post on how to survive in the Wizarding World once you’ve left Hogwarts hallowed halls.  I actually wouldn’t mind reading a spin-off series in the vein of Neville Longbottom and the Quarterlife Crisis!

How To Be A Hogwarts Graduate During A Recession

Anything Broken?

My love for the dearly-departed Party Down is well-documented – last year, on the eve of its cancellation, I wrote a post about I thought it was one of the most honest television shows about the disconnect between expectations and reality in your 20s.  Beyond that, its a show that consistently and repeatedly makes me laugh out loud, even when watching episodes I’ve seen a dozen times.

Which is how I happened upon one of my favorite scenes, pictured below.  I’m in a very different place than I was at this time last year – I’m in a new city with a full-time job and a very different life – and yet, I still find myself relating to Henry’s cynicism and self-defensive misanthropy.  I may not be popping pain-killers on the job, but much like Henry, I find solace in a stiff drink when I start to look too closely at all the ways life seems a little incomplete.  It’s not that anything is broken, but sometimes I feel the cracks in the foundation.

Are we having fun yet?