After College, Before Work

It’s an awkward interim – I have graduated college, but don’t yet have a real job. I am telling myself that this is not because I am lazy and unmotivated, but because I plan on higher education in the form of 3 years of law school to obtain a JD that will hopefully help me get an even better job.

But I am SURE I’m not the only one who’s found out that there’s this lovely gap of several months between graduating college and beginning graduate school. I’m not the ONLY one who graduated early, after all. Right? 

Right. Googling for things to do in this break didn’t yield much results beyond “OMG GET A JOB” so here I am blogging about what I think I would rather do in the time between now and September.

What should I do in all this spare time!? I want to go travel – I am planning to travel to India, hopefully. I’m VERY VERY psyched that I’m done with college, but I’m still very reluctant about entering reality and work and law school. It will happen, but it doesn’t need to happen quite yet….

If you guys have had ‘breaks’ in your life like this, what have you done with them?

Here’s what I’m hoping to accomplish before I start law school in September:

  1. Travel to India – probably in March or April? For a month or two.
  2. Finish organizing and decorating my basement room/mini-apartment
  3. Get a proper medical checkup – gynecologist + endocrinologist AND figure out how to regularly obtain birth control without paying out the roof for it
  4. WRITE! I have so many unfinished projects on this blog
  5. Go on a cruise – with friends, not family
  6. Do something adventurous – skiing? Hand-gliding, para-sailing, hot-air-balloon, bungee jumping, skydiving…the options are endless. Pick one and do it!
  7. Find a part-time job as a Paralegal once I’m done traveling
  8. GET INTO LAW SCHOOL – preferably Fordham – and find an affordable apartment in New York City
  9. Save up enough money for a car – long-term goal, don’t really need a car for the next three years while I am studying in the city
  10. Save up enough money for a Euro-trip – long-term goal, this won’t happen until after law school as well. 
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Bared to You

I saw a review of this book on a blog I will link to when I’m next on my computer (I’m posting this from my phone)!!

This is a response to Fifty Shades of Grey type book. I’ve read that trilogy so I figured I should read this too, plus its set in Manhattan.

The point though, of this post, is to share what I think is an AWESOME phenomenon that occurs to us New Yorkers after a time.

Below are Sylvia Day’s words, not mine 🙂 But they are apt, and I find myself wishing for the romance of steaming potholes again. To be so naive!

“Real New Yorkers cruised right through it all, their love for the city as comfortable and familiar as a favorite pair of shoes. They didn’t view the steam billowing from potholes and vents in the sidewalks with romantic delight and they didn’t blink an eye when the ground vibrated beneath their feet as the subway roared by below, while I grinned like an idiot and flexed my toes. New York was a brand new love affair for me. I was starry-eyed and it showed.

Isn’t this just a lovely little piece to read? The book isn’t about that in the end, I don’t think, but it is still a beautiful passage. It makes me nostalgic, because it is difficult to remember the last time I viewed my city with such reverence.

9/11/12

There are few dates that my generation cares to remember. September 11, 2001 is one of those dates. It will never be forgotten.

Please take some time today and think about the tragedies. Reflect on the miserable existence of humankind and if you think it will help, pray that tortured souls on the brink of the extreme may find solace and balance.

It is not fair that two defining landmarks of MY city were destroyed that morning. It is not fair that so many lives were lost, so many firefighters sacrificed, and so many families victimized by these brutal acts.

It was a sad day, no doubt. As were other iconic moments of staggering loss to our nation. It is a date among many other disgusting ones. Pearl Harbor, the Mumbai Bombings, Nagasaki and Hiroshima, etc.

Don’t get me wrong, Americans have given worse than they’ve got (nuclear bombings being my case in point) but that doesn’t diminish the fact that lives were lost then and now. And that is a sad fact of human existence that I don’t think we’ll ever be able to eradicate. We’re not capable of being as accomodating as we would need to be to prevent these acts of mass destruction and stop these thoughts from entering into the minds of our world’s citizens.

Studying American history, literature, and politics has already convinced me beyond a reasonable doubt that we really SUCK. Both as a race and as a peoples. So tomorrow, I will be extra mope-y and mad that I share 99.0% of my DNA with all of these people in the world who do bad things. Hell, I probably do bad things.

So you see?

We suck.

Poetic Tidbits – Oppen, Reznikoff, O’Hara

Charles Reznikoff, “On Brooklyn Bridge I saw a man drop dead”

On Brooklyn Bridge I saw a man drop dead.
It meant no more than if he were a sparrow.
Above us rose Manhattan;
below, the river spread to meet sea and sky.

George Oppen, from Of Being Numerous, “A Language of New York”

A city of the corporations

Glassed in dreams
And images–

And the pure joy
Of the mineral fact

Tho it is impenetrable

As the world, if it is matter
Is impenetrable.

Frank O’ Hara, “Having a Coke With You”

is even more fun than going to San Sebastian, Irún, Hendaye, Biarritz, Bayonne
or being sick to my stomach on the Travesera de Gracia in Barcelona
partly because in your orange shirt you look like a better happier St. Sebastian
partly because of my love for you, partly because of your love for yoghurt
partly because of the fluorescent orange tulips around the birches
partly because of the secrecy our smiles take on before people and statuary
it is hard to believe when I’m with you that there can be anything as still
as solemn as unpleasantly definitive as statuary when right in front of it
in the warm New York 4 o’clock light we are drifting back and forth
between each other like a tree breathing through its spectacles

and the portrait show seems to have no faces in it at all, just paint
you suddenly wonder why in the world anyone ever did them

I look
at you and I would rather look at you than all the portraits in the world
except possibly for the Polish Rider occasionally and anyway it’s in the Frick
which thank heavens you haven’t gone to yet so we can go together the first time
and the fact that you move so beautifully more or less takes care of Futurism
just as at home I never think of the Nude Descending a Staircase or
at a rehearsal a single drawing of Leonardo or Michelangelo that used to wow me
and what good does all the research of the Impressionists do them
when they never got the right person to stand near the tree when the sun sank
or for that matter Marino Marini when he didn’t pick the rider as carefully
as the horse

it seems they were all cheated of some marvelous experience
which is not going to go wasted on me which is why I am telling you about it

Note: I need to write a 10 page paper tying these together somehow. I will probably leave out the Oppen tidbit as it is from a much larger collection. The paper is due Thursday and I definitely don’t have time to do the piece justice in context to the rest of “Of Being Numerous” although I have so, so, so much to say about it if I could analyze just this one little tidbit. Enjoy the poetry, it’s all very short and sweet. Wish me luck with this paper!

Sorry to be falling behind on Blogging Honesty – I have 2 papers due this week and another due the week after. Then I’ll be done with my semester, wow. I’m really excited for it to be Thursday night lol, when both of these papers will be done. It’s 2AM and I’ve been up since 7 and I am totally WIPED right now. And I don’t really have much work done on either paper yet (1 is an 8 page first draft to be peer edited, and 1 is a 10 page paper on poetry and politics in New York City)

Such fun! Peace out, imma at least start outlining my ideas for the poetry paper 🙂 I’ve already read the pieces for my other paper (Aristotle – gender, sex, desire in Metaphysics, Physics, On The Generation of Animals) and annotated the readings heavily as I went through them looking for the 3 particular themes I’m supposed to focus on. So now it’s just a matter of penning my thoughts and as its a rough draft, it’s second on my priority list. Final paper is actually due 2 weeks from now for that class.

Aiight, good night. I’ll go to bed before 3AM I promise. Need to be up at 7:30 to get ready to get to class on time since I’m at home in Long Island. I was missing the comfort & feeling a tad homesick. I guess I need to be out of NYC to write a paper on it. Ironic.

How To Spend A Day In The City

Pick a day. Preferably a Friday or a Saturday.

Once you’ve picked out your day, you’re going to need to make me a promise. Promise me that you’ll read and follow me – it’s for your own good after all. We’re going to start our day by forgetting that we are college students. Homework, study groups, recitations, professors, and midterms no longer exist. We’re now simply ourselves, young adults eager to explore the world and have a bit of fun while we’re at it.

Because of this liberation, you’ll see the world a little differently. We’re not going to Union Square to get to UHall or Palladium, or even to our pesky Beginner Level II Spanish class. Why is only that level of Spanish on 13th Street anyway? Today, our trek to Union Square, made interesting because we’ve opened our eyes to the random homeless people we encounter, including that one crazy person who was singing ahead of us for about a block. Now be ready with your MetroCard, because our destination is the Uptown 4-5-6 line. Grab the first train that comes and hop in. Our first stop is 86th Street.

If you haven’t guessed yet, we’re going to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Once we get there, I’m going to give you some freedom, but remember, take pictures. Take a lot of pictures; you’ll cherish the memories later. Once you’ve explored your favorite exhibit, (Or done as I did – close my eyes and select a random wing. Explore said wing thoroughly) it’s time to head out – time for lunch perhaps? Pick a location you would otherwise never catch yourself in. And again, take pictures. Perhaps later, you might fancy turning it into a scrapbook?

Have we finished eating now? I ate at a small little European bistro café – something I’ve wanted to do for a while. What did you eat? Now that we’ve eaten, we’re going to head over to our next destination. Making our way slowly back downtown is the goal, but our next stop is Central Park. At Central Park, I’ve prepared a checklist – a scavenger hunt of sorts.

1. Find a talented musician and give him change; I know you have some left from lunch
2. Take a carriage ride. If you don’t want to pay, you can shadow a carriage and take pictures. Observe nature at its most innocent.
3. Find a body of water with nobody around it but you. Relax.
4. Sunbathe. Or look up at the clouds. Mull over your thoughts.
5. Find a quiet place – sing as loudly as you want. Take a picture of the sight.

Did you have as much fun today as I did? I’m sure by the time you complete this checklist, it’ll be quite late – almost time for dinner? I do hope you were smart and walked downtown rather than uptown all this time. The last part of our adventure is approaching, because it is now time to find a subway station we can take back to the NYU dorms. We’ll slowly adjust ourselves back into a dreary reality devoid of the spontaneity of stress-free freedom. I’m going to trust that you can figure out how to get back home – it is part instinct after all.

Go to a dining hall. It’s softer than heading straight back to your unkempt dorm, where binders, textbooks, and literature lay lined up, awaiting their completion. Our tasks can wait a little longer, so let’s listen to our stomachs first instead.

The sun’s set on both our day and liberty – we must now acknowledge the strings that come with college. As you trudge back to your dorm, don’t be quite so downcast, because underneath all of the tedious homework and tests, you know you can live in anticipation of another vacation. Don’t worry – the next time you can spare a few hours of freedom are what you have to look forward to. Such adventures are the true vacations of college kids. They compose some of the invaluable tidbits of life – a life that must be spent outside of simply studying.

– – –

Observation/Reflection: After a raging illness, one that lasted approximately a week, I was ready to get out of the dorm building. I hadn’t attended class, and the cold, gusty days outside were but a story to me – I’d heard about the days, but hadn’t experienced them. So this weekend, I promised to myself that I was going to recuperate, and do it properly – by having some fun. I took the bus down Madison Avenue to the Metropolitan Museum, and after exploring the entire medieval wing, (which was indeed a random selection) I treated myself to food not from an NYU dining hall. The trip in Central Park was certainly very refreshing, because getting away from the strain of college was imperative. One of the things that I’ve noticed in my semester here is this: students here are often so immersed in their extracurricular activities and classes that they fail to step back, take a deep breath, and say to themselves: “Holy crap, I live in New York City now.” Because it’s when you allow yourself to enjoy your surroundings, free of both stress and guilt, that you realize just how endearing this island is. It has an immeasurable amount of crazy things one can do to relax and get away from college life, and we honestly need to take better advantage of the city. NYC isn’t just here for its nightlife, and clubbing should not be the only means of a retreat. So I treated myself to a genuine day of fun, and then went home later that night and studied, this assignment itself being a part of that productive evening. Nature is a truly invigorating inspiration, and my trip. But back on topic – How to Date a Brown Girl was one of the more blatantly humorous pieces we’ve read. But best of all – it “kept it real” and didn’t try to confuse our senses with flowery, verbose writing. Because of that, one was attached to the narrator, and found the story all the more compelling. This trait is present in very few pieces of writing, and is one that I hope to embody in as much of my future work as I can.