Dick: The Epitome of Loserdom

I have received many anonymous comments on my blog most of them very angry. However since this a forum to address Dick’s life I will approve any comment as long as it does not contain actual names of people.

And a while ago someone posted this comment. “your degree didn’t help you amount to anything (your still living at home, in the projects, with your mother and to top it all off, you’ve never had a girlfriend nor have you gotten laid.) You really are the epitome of loser-dom.”

The loss of three jobs, living in the projects with my mother and being the 31 year old virgin is really the epitome of being a loser. This is rather embarrassing for me and no matter what my defense is makes me look like a complete imbecile. However my situation is a rarity.

However a degree from my school does not result in my situation. I know someone who majored in Environmental Studies with me and did the social science track which is less intense. Heck they didn’t have science lab and Friday morning classes (I had that for all eight semesters there). There are people who majored in English, Psychology who are gainfully employed. I wouldn’t go back there but that does not stop over four thousand people every year from applying to what CNN money  called the nation’s most expensive college in 2010.

Certainly this is not for lack of schooling either, with half a master’s in geographic analysis, four courses shy of a Certified Public Accountancy. Dick is the only person who can take any course even programming and somehow like his classmate said “I like how you’re not even a major or want to do this yet you manage to do better than most of us.”

And surely this is not for lack of effort. I applied for hundreds upon hundreds of city and government jobs where I am considered highly qualified and eligible but has lost out to countless veterans. And it is not like I did not try to become a veteran. You’re talking to a person who tried to get into the Navy. I even was gutsy enough to garner support from my congressman and got my case as high as the brass at the Pentagon.

I was rejected from a civilian job from the State Department to go to Iraq. I took a test for firefighter in 2007 but the results were thrown after a judge ruled the test racially discriminated against minorities. In 2009 I tested for police officer and scored a 100 and ranked 177/5XXX in the city. A friend even got me a job in finance and for a while we thought he had thwarted the psychic.

I applied for affordable housing but every time I get an interview my employment status changes and I either make too much or too little to qualify.
And surely for my friends who work in jobs in city government (which is definitely not as difficult as a job in high-frequency trading software) will certainly say Dick can do their job. (some will say possibly even better) I know people who are less competent than I who surely have been gainfully employed.

For my friends every time I throw this pitch they interrupt me because they don’t want to hear it. They know the truth. But as I explained to them, this can not make me look good.


1 Comment

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One response to “Dick: The Epitome of Loserdom

  1. Grover Mannings

    Dick, no matter how bad off you think you are, people are in worse situations. You could be homeless begging for quarters on the street, but you’ve been able to remain above water and have a place to live. The bleak national economy has made some people live outside the YMCA in parking lots. Thousands of highly qualified, highly experienced middle management employees have been let go by the largest corporations, only to find themselves lining up for unemployment benefits. Dick, you’re not alone in this.

    That said, I think you need to focus on what you really want to do. Environmental Science is an important discipline that qualifies you to volunteer/intern with many NGOs or private companies. One of my classmates from middle school has an Environmental Science degree from Duke and a Master’s degree from Johns Hopkins. Still, despite his distinguished education, he has struggled to find work that actually pays. It seems working in this field requires constant searches for internships that *might* eventually lead to employment.

    What do you really want to do? A few years ago, when I was contemplating my move to Costa Rica, my dad said I was employable as a “generalist” due to my liberal arts education. The problem is that in the USA, “generalists” get paid general wages and nothing more. If you want a job that brings home the bacon, you need to have specialized skills. What skill set do you possess that is highly sought after in today’s economy?

    Also bear in mind that getting a job and working your way up the corporate ladder for 20 years and then retiring is no longer a viable model in this highly competitive world. People are constantly changing jobs – even careers – in order to stay employed and get higher salaries. It’s a sh*tty reality, but one must accept it.

    Here are a few ideas I have for you right off the cuff:

    1. Move. Apply to jobs/internships up and down the Eastern seaboard. Let’s face it, New York is neither offering you affordable rent nor employment. There are many up and coming cities in South Carolina, Florida, Virginia, and Maryland that might offer you better alternatives.

    2. Entrepreneurship. I know you don’t like this option, but let’s face it: if you can’t get a job, create a job of your own. Many websites like http://www.elance.com offer people with basic web development abilities part time work. No, you won’t be reporting to an office, but you can make money if you discipline yourself to sit down at the computer and crank out code. Additionally, http://www.elance.com hires people to write article content. Every commercial website needs text content to improve their search engine rankings. Maybe you could write articles part-time for a web business?

    3. The Dramatic route. You’ll probably like this one the best. If you are truly without employment opportunities, do something extreme to land a job. Get a suit and tie on. Then, choose a street in NYC with many businesses that interest you. Walk in the door and present yourself for employment and give them your resume. Say you’ll work 90 days for free. Say you’ll do whatever it takes to land a job in their firm, even if it means working the mail room for 6 months. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

    4. And now for a little levity. I’m sure you’ve seen the Asian guy they’re making fun of in the Family Guy parody below. He’s an infomercial guru that has sold real estate for a living and has apparently bedded many white girls. 🙂

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