So the exciting event I was hintingabout has come to pass, and I’ll be starting a new full-time job Monday morning. Some of you may be aware that four years ago I dropped pretty much my entire life in the trash and moved to another state in the wake of a decade-long relationship which had, especially looking back on it now, gotten a bit scary towards the end. My sister graciously offered me refuge, in a situation which was uncomfortable for all involved but acceptable, because temporary. Turns out.
“It’s all about who you know” is a truism, and not having a network of friends and acquaintances here nor many opportunities to build one, I struggled to find gainful employment. I didn’t gain much from my naïve hand-me-the-bootstraps approach to career-building than an unshakable negative view of temp agencies and online job listing sites. Do not speak to me of LinkedIn. Ultimately it was who I knew, again my sainted sister, who put me in contact with the right people at the right time.
As someone who has been broke, really and truly poor, I still feel like this could all fall apart at any time. But another part of me has already worked out a detailed monthly budget that has me owning a car (used) and living in my own apartment (studio) by Halloween, if I can stick to it. I am elated, I am terrified, I am grateful, and I am determined.
The fact that today it seems to be universal is merely the product of a lot of white people getting on a lot of boats, freighted not only with their lust for gold but also their questionable mores and customs.
into a discussion about romantic love in my online class, and walked away like
I’ve done my required posts for the week, so I hope they have fun with that one.
I’m just superstitious enough that I won’t discuss it before it’s all settled, but today I scrawled my childlike signature in approximately 27 places, slid the resulting kindergarten craft project into a fedex envelope, and I am terrified.
My spreadsheets inform me that I’ll soon be able to achieve my dream. I’m 32 and I’ve never lived alone. But what if my taste in décor is pedestrian?
Let’s be real, in a time before the internet people didn’t have more adventures and make more meaningful connections. They watched TV and listened to CDs. Before that they listened to records and read magazines. Before that they listened to the radio and read bad dime novels. Before that they embroidered or some shit.
People have been staying inside and ignoring other people for as long as there have been buildings.
Students who considered themselves socialists were not so much interested in the poor as they were desirous of leading the poor, of being their guides and saviors. It was just this paternalism toward the poor that the vision of solidarity I had learned in religious settings was meant to challenge. From a spiritual perspective, the poor were there to guide and lead the rest of us by example if not by outright action and testimony. As a student I read Marx, Gramsci, and a host of other male thinkers on the subject of class. These works provided theoretical paradigms but rarely offered tools for confronting the complexity of class in daily life.
[W]hen I told friends and colleagues that I was resigning from my academic job to focus on writing, I was warned that I was making a dangerous mistake, that I could not possibly live on an income that was between twenty and thirty thousand dollars a year. When I pointed to the reality that families of four and more live on such an income, the response would be “that’s different”; the difference being, of course, one of class. The poor are expected to live with less and are socialized to accept less (badly made clothing, products, food, etc.), whereas the well-off are socialized to believe it is both a right and a necessity for us to have more, to have exactly what we want when we want it.
bell hooks, where we stand: Class Matters, chapter 4 (via snailfan)