general humor

Cover Letter

I have been doing unpaid work for a year now. For most of that time, my people have found this to be quite useful. I organized two moves in one year, I make a lot of customized meals for some VERY high-maintenance dietary regimens, and I serve as the Durable Power of Attorney for my 74 year-old mother, who suffers from dementia.

BONUS PARENTHETICAL THOUGHT: I always think “parenthetical” is spelled with TWO A’s at the beginning. But that is not really my parEnthetical thought. Here’s the real one:

For all women who perseverate about their unclean/unorganized/multiple-things-need-fixing homes because they are working full-time for money and never have any time to clean/organize/fix, I have only this to say: STOP WORRYING.

The only people who can possibly keep stainless steel polished, stove tops wiped, countertop appliances spotless, sides of major appliances dripless, inside kitchen drawers crumbless, cabinet faces unsticky, kitchen floors swept and mopped, wood furniture dusted, sheets changed regularly, laundry done before people run out of underwear, floors/carpets/underneath-couch-cushions/upstairs carpet/stairs vacuumed, pantries organized, toilets cleaned, showers/tubs scrubbed and bathroom counters presentable for company, are people who are looking for work or people BEING PAID TO CLEAN YOUR HOUSE. So, please, cut yourself some major slack. It is A LOT of fucking work and it took me forever to do when I was working part-time. And when I say, “took forever to do,” I mean I finally did it when we had to sell our house in a hurry.

So, yeah. I’ve been busy. While simultaneously not being paid.

It’s a funny business being unpaid, especially when the unemployment rate is at 3-4% and tech workers are in great need. This tends to make me feel like A#1 Loser and/or A#2 Very Old. Let’s face it: tech is a young, white male business and who’s gonna want 51 year-old me when 28 year old Katherine is out there for your technical writing needs. Also, 28 year-old Katherine is not charging as much as I am. WHICH IS ANOTHER THING.

Pay here sucks. TERRIBLE. I’ve been horrified by hourly rates offered to contract tech writers. I kinda thought, with all the PDX hullabaloo, that rates would be like Boston pay. Not_even_close. That’s what happens when a C-level city becomes a perceived A-level city: real estate prices go up, but pay/infrastructure takes years to catch up.

The  point? In order to NOT feel like a loser (’cause I’m not) or old (’cause even though I’ve been looking forward to my Sports Medicine doctor appointment for WEEKS, so the cause of my searing shoulder pain can be diagnosed, 50 is STILL the new 40), I tend to focus instead on What the Universe Is Trying to Tell Me.

My children recently told me that I “do everything” (except bring in funds). Should I market my “do everything” services? First of all: everyone will think I’m a hooker. Also, people will want someone cheaper, who does not have a college education, a 2-year professional certificate in computer programming and 8+ years of technical writing experience who GRADUATED MAGNA CUM LAUDE FROM A PLAYBOY TOP 10 PARTY SCHOOL. That is usually the first sentence I write in my cover letters, which may be part of my paid-work-getting problem.

I thought about selling my organizing services again. I’m a natural organizer. My mom once told me I organized my umbilical cord and the placenta in the womb. The problem is, you think you’ll be organizing — say — someone like your best friend’s office, when — in fact — it’s an out-of-town family that needs you to purge their mom slash hoarder’s basement that smells like cat shit.

THEN … it struck me: I hate people; my fantasy diet would consist of coffee all morning, a bowl of popcorn for lunch and then potato vodka come evening; I love spending time alone; and — I am 100%, completely, disgustingly self-absorbed. It’s so obvious: I AM A MAN! Just kidding! I’m a fucking writer!

WRITE. That’s what I’m gonna do. EVEN THOUGH it is not making me money. If no one is going to pay me to be a technical writer (who is skilled, conscientious and capable), then I’m gonna WRITE for free. Which is what I did with this blog post. You’re welcome!

Look! A picture of Trumpy, PRE-Penisdent, with my thoughts in his head:

trump_is that leigh

Categories: general humor

12 replies »

  1. Actually, when Adriane told me you’ll do anything I thought that was what she meant, too. So you’re not a hooker. Huh… Well, anyway, you’re a damn good writer, so you got that going for you! Your bro in KC,MO

      • Don’t get me started on password remembering…along with a huge paper-clipped packet of hand-written passwords, I have 2 password apps on my phone…one was GREAT for years until they didn’t offer an iOS update so it can no longer be opened/accessed, and the other app I can’t figure out how to use/enter new passwords or find the ones I already entered. wtf???

  2. You still make me laugh every day Catherine! I’m so happy you’re going to continue writing and must tell you that reading this particular post inspired me to get going on my own writing again … which I announced on Facebook MONTHS ago and then promptly stopped doing. So, in no particular, order, here is some praise for the parts I loved in particular: your fantasy diet and your mom telling you that you organized your umbilical cord and placenta in the womb, and your “permission” (because we all need the reminder, always) to stop worrying and perseverating (I love that word and that you love words like I do!) about what we cannot accomplish. WHAT is the standard we’re all measuring ourselves against? Where did it come from? You’re/we’re doing what is important and meaningful what no one else can do in the here and now and it’s ENOUGH!

    • ohmygawsh, Sally this made ME happy on so many levels. 1. I’m THRILLED I make you laugh every day and B. that this post inpsired YOU to keep writing. Doing our creative work every_day is a BATTLE every_day. It might be added to that VERY list of housekeeping as to how HARD it is to do for ourselves, but should be on the list of MAKING SURE TO DO IT!

    • There is a GREAT book called the “War of Art” that I highly recommend owning. It’s all about the war, every day, in our heads, that happens when we talk ourselves OUT of doing our art. The beast that is at war inside of us is NASTY. I’m not sure, but this also may be the book that talks about our art as our gift, as in: jokes just POP into my head. That is a GIFT and I shouldn’t mess with it! I should use it. So, yay on you! WRite write write and don’t beat yourself up about commiting yourself MONTHS ago. It is a battle. It’s like trying to exercise outside when it’s pouring rain :) It’s like trying to spell COMMITTING correctly the first time! xo (and, yes, perseverating is my favorite word of all time; the wordpress spellcheck doesn’t even contain it, which — somehow — makes me love it even more. PLEASE tell me a word of your own that you love. Another of mine is CUNT, as in, The CUNT in my brain makes me feel bad every day about what I did NOT get done in my professional and personal life and also eveyr _single CUNT who is attacking the #metoo movement right now.

  3. gagaahhahaha! i had one password program on my laptop that COMPLETELY UNDID MY LAPTOP by using up obscene amounts of memory <– not even trying there. Killed my laptop! Oh, the hand-written password sheets! Sometimes, I'll be so lazy, I'll just use the Forgot Password feature instead of getting up … going to my desk .. opening the drawer … getting my Password sheet. ..Then, of course, I'll remember my Password Sheet the NEXT month and then have no foxtrotting idea what I CHANGED my password to. OMYGAWD this is worthy of an entire blog post, me thinks!

    • YESSSSSS…PLEASE! A blog post is in order. I swear, living my life through passwords is enough to make me live in a yurt in the woods and give up all technology. Except for a TV to watch the upcoming final season of The Americans…

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