There’s a woman who dance walks around the Rose Bowl, and she really dances more than she walks. She usually wears sweats, a hoodie, and running shoes, and she listens to a walkman with over-the-head earphones. She’s middle aged, attractive, and does not pay the slightest bit of attention to all the walkers, runners (myself included) and bikers who check her out as she boogies her way around the 3.3 mile loop. Compared to her, I feel so contained, so straight-lined as I run in, well, a straight-line, my arms contained neatly against my sides, my breathing steady, posture upright. She’s all sideways and frontways and backways, butt shaking and shoulders rolling and arms bumping. Makes you wonder how she exists in the real world (that is, the world of having a job or grocery shopping; although, maybe this is just how she gets around, everywhere. Wouldn’t that be something.) Anyway, I love this woman. I have no idea who she is but she’s so damn into it. Whatever it is.
That is neither here nor there, which is sort of how I feel. I’m trying to settle into life here, in this place I grew up. It’s peculiar, being here yet trying to exist in the placeless places of online writing, nebulous and ill-defined, where there are so many applications I could submit or articles I could write. I spent an hour perfecting an application for an online writing job: cover letter, essay questions, writing samples, resume, the whole gamut. I pushed submit with an anti-climatic click and got an email response in exactly 39 minutes–as if a human could have feasibly read it in that amount of time–which read, “Thank you for applying. Your application has been rejected for one of the following reasons:” after which it listed ten reasons ranging from poor grammar and/or spelling, to insufficient experience, to, I kid you not, a criminal record that is incompatible with our mission and/or hiring procedures.
In my dejected state, I went to the La Canada Starbucks for a coffee and asked, in a rather mopey tone, if they were hiring, and then, because I suppose I’m entirely overqualified to be working at Starbucks, I got offered a job. So. We shall see. I do find it ironic that the very newspapers I’m scouring to find freelance/job opportunities are reporting on their front pages that California’s unemployment rate has reached 11.9% (which also certainly makes one consider turning one’s nose up at a Starbucks job). And so I try to channel the dance walking lady, whose just in it, and happy to be there.