in which witness is borne: birds, politics, fiction and critical art theory

non refundable

Saturday, February 19, 2005
so, for what i think was the first time in my life, i decided not to get on a plane at the last minute. allow me to explain.
the College Art Association is having its annual conference this week, and as this is sold to us MFA students as the ONE, the ONLY opportunity to Network and be interviewed for the holy grail of university teaching jobs, i too signed up to go.
but [and here i just took a 10 minute intermission to phone the airline and get 1/3 of my return ticket money back as a credit-the glass is truly 1/2 full, or more like 1/8 full to be exact] in the several months since signing up for this thing, i've been learning more about this mysterious calculus of what goes into Getting the Job. and what i've learned is that it's based on Relationships and Experience, not attending a silly conference where the participants scan, evaluate, compete and bicker with each other in as Hobbesian an environment as the first season of Survivor, or maybe a party at Condoleezza Rice's house. (this of course being my worst stereotype and fear about such trade conferences. not having been to any, the reality could be that everyone sits on La-Z-Boys cracking each other up with sock puppets and Charades. Who knows.)
All this, combined with the fact that i had unsuccessfully exhausted no less than six (6) leads on finding a place to stay for one lousy night in Atlanta, gave me additional wrinkles on my face from all the brow-furrowing i was doing in making a decision to stay or go.
And what would i have been leaving behind in Chi-town for those 24 hours? a mountain of work, including finishing writing this article which i now kind of actually care about, doing taxes, and visiting with Dad, who is in town only for a couple of days.
So i woke up at 6am to pack and catch my flight, looked up at the grid of ceiling tiles and the dull purplish bruise of light in the window, and decided not to go.
the illuminati of the university art world can judge each other and sip their Old Fashioneds without me. Harrumph.
of course, amidst my feelings of triumph, superiority and relief was regret. Regret at the $285 price tag of the plane ticket and conference registration. i cursed my indecision for costing me so much, not even f^#&%$ing realizing that you can, in fact, get store credit for a cancelled flight UNLESS you no-show. WHich i of course did. No-show, that is.
in the end i have a $40 credit for the return flight minus their stupid fees, and nothing else to show for my "trip" to Atlanta except a reinforced suspicion that my brain is hard-wired to avoid competing with others at any cost.
some Apprentice i'd make, huh?
7:54 AM :: ::
  • Go easy on yourself mar-mar. You didn't do anything wrong although I would have liked to hear about atlanta, never been there. anyways, I saw this and thought of you. let me take you away from all this!!
    trip for maria

    By Blogger Abbyg., at 9:23 AM  
  • Well, it seems to me that you're a person of fairly strong conviction who can make her own decisions, regardless of what the CAA has to say. Plus, I think you are capable of seeking out inventive jobs on your own. I think you can see beyond the next few steps you make in a day, week, month or so. So, I am sad that you are out a good wad of $$, but it was providential that you were around when S did his leg thing.

    And a., what a nice way to cheer m. up with an e-trip.

    By Blogger AmberFRIDA, at 3:43 PM  
  • On the Condi front:

    My friend H. who lives in DC saw C.R. shopping for shoes with her mom at the Pentagon City Mall Nordstrom. Security everywhere. I never thought about what I would do if I were C.R. and my mother came to visit...what would we do for fun? Go shopping for shoes! Life in DC...so little done, so much to talk about. It's a real head case.

    By Blogger AmberFRIDA, at 3:15 PM  
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