I spent a lot of time yesterday cleaning up dog vomit. The dog has bad ears and they get infected without my noticing because I am a terrible dog owner. Since she is twelve, and blind, she doesn’t do much normally—so “lethargy” and “inactivity” are sort of her natural states. Hard to notice when her activity level goes from .5 to .2. Antibiotics to cure the disgusting ears have all kinds of other disgusting side effects. Poor doggy. Anyway… I don’t often think, “I have a college degree and 15 years of experience, and I am doing THIS,” but it crossed my mind more than once during Festival de Papertowel and Rugcleaner. Let’s stipulate that I am slightly overqualified to clean up dog vomit. There are, however, a list of things in the world that I am not qualified, nor will ever be qualified to do.
- Consignment Boutique Fashionista: This was what started the whole thing. A consignment shop had a “Fashionista Wanted” sign up, and I thought, “Well, they don’t want me.” I treat my clothes and my cars the same way. I find something reliable and use it until every single last drop of goody has been wrung from its sad, tattered carcass. My 2007 Honda has 125,000 miles on it and I’m hoping for at least two more years. Some of my shirts probably have almost that many miles on them. It’s not a successful garment experience unless you’re too ashamed to give it to Goodwill. If an actual “Fashionista” went through my closet, I’d probably have to foot some therapy bills or call the police.
- Hoarder: Now you’re probably imagining that my closet is just one massive pile of rags. NOT SO. I am not constitutionally capable of hoarding stuff. I also lack the mental self-trickery to think that I will need *that* someday, or that I won’t ever have another one of *those* again, or that I can fix *this* up and it will be worth something on eBay. No, no, and NO. It’s all just crap. Throw it away. If you need all those things to preserve every precious memory, then maybe a couple of them aren’t as precious as you think. I get mental when the trash can is full and the possibility of throwing something away doesn’t exist. Really mental. Like…if we forget trash day, Mr. YSBH has to take to can to the transfer station or it ruins my week. My career as a professional hoarder would be cut short about three times a year when I looked around and said, “What is all this junk??? Gah! Get me a shovel!”
- Physics Instructor: I’m a smart gal[i]. I learned and learned when I was in school, and I embraced all the learny things. Except trigonometry and wave theory. To be honest, I decided not to. I am certain that I am fully capable of learning those two things (really, they are sort of the same thing, you can’t get one without the other), but I would have to memorize it. It doesn’t make logical sense to me. Trading in financial derivative futures, and the required reporting? SURE. Light waves bouncing all over my room? Nope. I decided that it’s MAGIC. The idea of things bouncing all over my room all the time makes me uncomfortably crawly. Just writing about it now is making me restless. Magic in the air (which is also not moving unless there is a breeze, thank you very much) allows the sounds and sights to enter my head as needed. This also explains why Mr. YSBH has “selective hearing.” HE’S IMPERVIOUS TO MAGIC, YOU GUYS. While this theory works really well for me, I betcha it wouldn’t go over that well in a high school science class. Then again… kids today, they might not know the difference.
- Parent: Speaking of kids, I am completely unqualified to be a parent. This is the one job on the list that I actually have, and I can’t even quit. “Sorry, kids, but this gig isn’t working out for either of us. I’m just going to move on so you can hire somebody who is a better fit.” I took Child Development in high school. For the assignment where you were to come up with fun games for preschoolers using household objects, I turned in “Look at the Man in the Sun,” which you were supposed to do with binoculars. I was the one person the preschoolers did *not* want to read to them during the field trip to the day school. Somehow, they let me bring two of the little snowflakes home from the hospital, though. Amazing. I’m setting the bar pretty low on this one, honestly. Were they clothed and sort of fed when I dropped them at preschool with their buckets? YES. Gold star for me, because they both had buckets and snacks and shoes on the correct feet. As for the more advanced parts of this job, I’m totally winging it until I get my performance review. Which I am still waiting for, BY THE WAY—do you know when those come out again?
[i] Yes. I said “gal.” I’m taking back “gal.” I don’t actually know what’s wrong with “gal,” except maybe it’s a little familiar. In the wrong context, sure, that would be offensive, just like a man can be called “buddy” in an aggressive way. I’m a gal, she’s a gal, wouldn’t you like to be a gal, too?