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Quarter-Life Crisis?

by jean at 03:22 AM on February 21, 2002

To the employment world, I'm a marketing writer. Four jobs into my career, and that is what I have become. It's been four years since I graduated college. Back then I was going to be a journalist. I was going to save the world, tell the truths that needed to be told, expose the scandals that needed to be exposed. And somewhere along the way I morphed into a marketing hack, one of a species which Dilbert says posesses only one strand of DNA. Why? Because marketing people are stupid enough to believe anything.

So how can I justify what I am now to the earnest young college student I met yesterday, the one who changed his major from English to Latin American studies because he wants to create social justice for his people? Social Justice. He thinks that maybe he will read Trotsky in the Russian, or Marx in the German. He's all fired up. I saw his face fall when, after thinking he'd found a comrade in a former Sociology major, found instead he had a corporate serf, a would-be spin-doctoring tool of the capitalist machine on his hands. Have I sold out?

I hadn't had time to explain to him then the economics of Sociology. There is an age-old question (okay, maybe not age-old): "What does a Soc major say after they graduate?" And the well-worn answer is, "Would you like fries with that?" For a while I escaped my fate as a Soc major. I had my own apartment and my own car, I had vacations to Europe and Asia. I had pricey clothes. I have a laptop. But do I, anymore, have my soul? I had never worried about this. But somebody tell me whether, for myself and all the other working drudges out there, the answer may be no?

comments (4)

Hardly. College students have no idea what life is like outside campus boundaries. Once they get out on their own, they learn real fast about how things really work. I actually considered majoring in drawing until I realized that you canít get a decent job at it, so I finished with a degree in Graphic Design. It was a compromise that now allows me to eat better food than ramen.

by MrBlank at February 21, 2002 9:45 AM

The well-worn answer is "Would you like fried this that?"...

That's not an answer! That's a question. And YOU majored in journalism? (I majored in assholism.)

by Eviltom at February 21, 2002 12:30 PM

When I was in school, I always said I'd be willing to sell my soul for success. In one my advertising classes, the teacher did a bit about ethics. I was the only student who said they'd work for a tobacco company.

Since I've been out of school, I've worked with a couple of the largest companies in the world. I've come to realize that there are more important things then success. I'd much rather feel satisfaction with my self and the work I was doing then be making the benjamins.

by mg at February 21, 2002 6:13 PM

Eviltom: Think outside the box. :)

by jean at February 22, 2002 3:18 AM

comments are closed