Thursday, 15 December 2011

Failing deliberately?

Turning down the offer of a well-paid, sensible and corporate job for a bizarre and lowly part-time one has got me thinking. Is this a kind of deliberate failure?

Here are the reasons, inside my head, for wanting a part-time job:

  1. I am exhausted by the world and it's demands. I feel as though I might die if I don't have enough, more than others seem to need, time to just be, to read and think and write and sleep and just be.
  2. I am trying to finish writing a manuscript. A whole book-length novel manuscript and this feels impossible even when I have nothing else I am obliged to do. I need time.
  3. I am trying to run a magazine. A stupid kind of magazine but one nonetheless and I want to do the best that I can, I want all the amazing people who work on Team PAN to feel as though I am doing all I can, that I am not taking advantage of their work and their time that I am trying, that I am brave, that I have a good plan. I need time for this.
  4. I cannot be a corporate person. I have tried. I have failed. A law degree does not make me a suit. It doesn't make me anything other than a person with a massive HECS debt.
  5. Almost every day there is at least one moment when I think, 'I can't do this, life is too hard'. I quite often, so often it doesn't even phase me anymore, think that I won't make it through the day. This is normal for me, but it seems that other people don't necessarily agree that it's normal. I manage these feelings quite easily, usually, and just go about as though that wink at oblivion never occurred but it marks me in a subtle way. If you know what you're looking at when you look at people you'll see a tidemark on me, see that I've been to sea, been washed up, been marked by experience outside the good and kind. It takes effort to move with ease among those who don't know what I'm talking about, it takes enormous effort to conform to an office culture. I feel too tired to attempt it.
  6. The morning. I struggle with regular early rising. I struggle against the need for clockwork rising, I battle myself with late nights, with random insomnia, with the inability to manage it for than three days at a time. I can't do it. I feel as though I can't physically do it.
  7. I have the wrong clothes. I don't have any money for office clothes, I can never find any that I can wear without looking like a balloon animal. I am inappropriately attired, always, and I don't know how to change that. If I was a slip of a girl I might go to the op shop or ask friends to loan me things but that is really not going to work.
  8. I'm sure there's more. I don't what they are at this moment. I'm going to finish defrosting the freezer and have a cup of tea and watch an episode of Killing Time. I like David Wenham, this doesn't mean I prefer him to Richard Roxburgh, I don't think that 's a rule.
  9. This is an incomplete train of thought and perhaps the negative part of this train of thought. Later there might be a long line of positive ideas and notes and perhaps even laughter.


Anonymous said...


"Throw off your discontent about your nature; forgive yourself your own self, for you have in it a ladder with a hundred rungs, on which you can climb to knowledge. The age into which you feel yourself thrown with sorrow calls you blessed because of this stroke of fortune; it calls to you so that you may share in experiences that men of a later time will perhaps have to forego."

lots of love leurf

Vanessa said...

I think you made the right decision. Why would you spend all your time and energy on something that means nothing to you for which you have to look like a balloon animal?
x Vb.