The Real World Ain’t What She Used To Be

As I sit here on my futon in my studio apartment, disenchanted with life and pounding on the keys, I wonder just what in the hell did I do to deserve this? I mean, I know the decisions I made along the way that led me to this point, but did I piss someone off along the way? There’s gotta be something more than that. See, I ended up taking this road because we’re all promised the same final destination; the real world. So I couldn’t help but figure “eh, sure, why the hell not?” when I decided to apply to art school. Mind you, the scribblings of pre-schoolers are more artistic than anything my hand could produce, so I use the term “art school” very loosely. I’m a writer, and as a writer, I can’t help but feel that I have no place at an art school, but hell, I ended up here anyway. I suffered my 4 years (technically 3 1/2, but who’s counting?) and I came out on the other end unscathed.
The problem is this… where the hell is this “real world”? It’s got to be something tangible, right? I mean, we spend all our lives working towards this one common goal, but who actually gets it? I kinda feel like I drew the short straw in all this (not in a self-pitying kinda way) because as I sit here, typing away and hoping that someone is actually reading, I can’t help but ask myself the question that nobody seems to want us to ask. “When’s the real world gonna kick in?” Hell, it’s the only thing I can think.
The way I see it, the joke’s on us. There’s this whole thing teachers and parents never seem to like to tell us about and that’s a little somethin’ called natural talent. Sure, school benefits you in honing your craft, but what are you going to improve if you don’t have it in the first place? I don’t want this to be taken as an endorsement of not going to school or anything. I gained a helluva lot from the experience and I’d like to think that I’m a better person for it. I’m just saying to do it for the promise of the “real world” and a “real life” and a “real job” is pointless. Worst of all, it’s a straight up lie that somebody told us to make us feel better. The only problem is when the truth comes out, you don’t feel better. You feel like shit. Most folks my age have been working at least 16 years towards the promise of something real at the end of it all only to be told that an undergraduate degree just doesn’t seem to cut it anymore.
I know I seem awfully jaded for having only been out of school for about 5 weeks, but I guess I just felt like something would be different after all of it. I mean, finally reaching the goal that I’ve been working towards for so long and finding nothing at the end is rough for anyone. People say that I need to give it time and that it’s a work in progress. Others say I need to get my head in the game and actively pursue more writing jobs. I don’t know who’s right. All I know is when you’re not getting a call back about a job at Gap with a college degree, I think I’m allowed a little disappointment.


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