There’s a clean slate of white paper in front of every post-college grad twenty-
something. And when the silent penitence we paid during college practicums and
hours of going about stupid schoolwork is done, we are on our own. The gates are
opened to all innocent slaves of a system that made us believe what we do in the
classroom is what we will shall be paid to do in the real world. Spolier alert. It
isn’t, save for your single last term of practicum, that is if you choose to become
Taken from experience, nobody tells you what the real world would be like. Okay,
maybe there were rumors. But they were all general statements of agony that don’t
really come across. They say life after college would be hard. But how hard, exactly?
I knocked on my first attempt to land a job with all the enthusiasm and idealism of a
19-year-old who’s got a GPA of above average and whose only taste of reality was
a couple of i-wanna-forget-that summer part time employment. But who’s to blame if
the system which raised the kinds of dreamers like me were all in a conspirational
battle against keeping the outside world from the academe?
Well, maybe that was pretty necessary. I mean who would want to efface a system
so hardened by convention that it has become automatically required without a need
for question? The system is the system and this has to go on. No looking back, just
building up. As what I’ve learned from my previous Curr. Dev’t instructor (or from the
book assigned for that course), this system has become a major pillar of society.
Would you knock down a pillar, eh?
I’m not arguing that we banish the scholastic system. For my part, it was one of the
best chapters of my youth. But I remember the people more than the courses I’ve
taken. I can easily recount the backlashes of jokes before each start of a morning
Microbiology class. I may as well tell you some anecdotes from one of those subjects
than I can recite the procedures of staining a slide of microbes. It’s just that, maybe
we could fix up the system a bit so it would stamp down to the memories of
students, maybe along – or more than – just having fun. Then maybe college life
wouldn’t be too stigmatized after all.
You can ask me bits and pieces of this and that and I’m sure I can only hardly recall
or guess the right answer. When people find out I graduated from this school, in this
course, I receive a response of both intimidation and awe, coupled with a soaring
level of unreal expectations. “Wow, bright diay“. Well, f*** that! When I started
working my ass off with strict company rules, with a coworker in the next cubicle
who seem to be always plagued by a storm of mood swings, when the pressure of
deadline presses you, when you find out that these people from these backgrounds
can do more than you can, the last thing on your mind would be that “I came from
here”. At the end of the day, that just doesn’t matter anymore. Out there is a level
playing field. And no medal can save you from the harsh reality of a harsh world.
I’m biased. Because I’m saying this from the camp of displaced professionals. Of
course I wasn’t trained for this. I was trained on how to raise my tiny voice to a
group of teenagers who don’t really give a damn. I was trained to stay up all night to
finish the next day’s horror plan. I was trained to be superior, authoritative, to be
someone with an air of nobility so that the society can eternally attach a single
syllable of “ma’am” before my name. Unfortunately I haven’t stepped on that realm
yet. So who am I to pose a complaint when the problem has been me all along? Still,
am I not entitled to my democractic right? (Ugh, fancy term)
There, there. I have reached another philosophical argument with myself. This has
become a habit that doesn’t really end to a conclusion because I always come out
more confused than enlightened.
So bless to the soul who has taken three minutes of his/her life reading such a
wasted article. This is my version of a literary prank.
P.S. And may the odds be ever in our favor.