But enough about you …

I am in the thick of marking and preparing my exam (and the exam review for those happy few who bother to come to the last week of classes) so I need (desperately) the distraction of the internet. Who knew that writing for a blog would be a legitimate (because it is writing, right?) distraction?
Here are two more things about me:
5. This is what I looked like when I interviewed for the job I have now.
In fact, it was worse because the latent bruise that was developing underneath my left eye had surfaced just for the occasion. I was shopping in the Fashionable City nearby the Industrial/University Town where I did my grad work for two suits for my two-day campus visit (if you go on the market, be serious about it and buy a suit; DO NOT wait until three days before your interview) when I tripped on my way up a set of stairs and smashed the bridge of my nose onto the riser of a concrete step. Immediately my right eye swelled shut. I bought a bottle of water, pressed its coldness gingerly to my nose and took the bus back to Industrial/University Town, weeping the entire way; no one sat beside me. When I told my mother about it she helpfully pointed out that I could have smashed my teeth. True, but cold comfort at the time.
I think, however, that having a broken face may have helped me because it made me more “me” at the interview. I was never going to be the polished, be-suited prof that I thought I should be for a campus visit (I am not that now) so I think I was able to let go of the fantasy and be honest about my own shortcomings. I am lucky that this department seems to have recognised that. Either that or the other candidates had worse injuries.
Obviously I’m not suggesting that you give yourself a black eye for the interview, but I am suggesting that you should be as much you as you can be at the interview. I was not dressed as myself at this interview, except for the bashed in face, and it was the bashed in face, I think, that may have given me an edge because it reminded me of who I was: a clumsy newbie who is terrified by the interview process but willing to bring it anyway because she believes she has something that she can bring. That, or the other candidates were too expensive/blew it worse than I did.
6. I love this picture of me. And there are maybe two pictures of myself in the world that I love.

Jacket: Jackpot
Scarf: Oasis
T-shirt: Garage (has sparkly writing on it)
Skirt: from Joy
Tights: have had them since high school
Shoes: Dune
Purse: Roots
It is the picture on my faculty web profile at the university and, if I can use it for a book jacket (dream!), I will. AW took it when she visited me while I was living in London. I still own all of the components of this outfit, except for the orange blazer. It was velvet and I wore it a lot as a blazer and as outerwear, and it started to bald and shabbify, so it did not make the cut to come home in the two suitcase allowance I had when I moved back to North America after a year in the UK. I have never found another like it.
What I especially love about this photo is my new colleague’s assessment of it. She is putting together her own faculty web page and she remarked that she didn’t have a photo that was as quintessentially her as this is quintessentially me. She doesn’t know me well, and I don’t know her well, but I love that she has identified something about me that I also see in this photo. And that AW, to her credit, was able to capture.
Do you have a (secret) book jacket photo (already)? Is it normal to know the photo better than the book?

4 thoughts on “But enough about you …

  1. Dude your story about your poor bruised face on your interview made me laugh so hard. And feel sorry for pre-employed DM. I was so nervous about my interview and my friends told me that NYC women always wear heels, so I put on 3" heels, and when I got there, no one wore heels and I felt like an idiot. Your book jacket photo is adorable. One of my grad school friends picked one out for me already, but it's probably not appropriate because it's from when I was about 10 months old.

  2. The next time I see that skirt in real life, I'm stealing it. (not if you're wearing it, of course)Also, I love your book jacket photo. And not just because I snapped it. You're right: it captures an essence of you and is awesome. Frankly, this has more to do with the awesomeness of this moment than with the point-and-shoot camera holder who captured it.

  3. Dude your story about your poor bruised face on your interview made me laugh so hard. And feel sorry for pre-employed DM. I was so nervous about my interview and my friends told me that NYC women always wear heels, so I put on 3" heels, and when I got there, no one wore heels and I felt like an idiot. Your book jacket photo is adorable. One of my grad school friends picked one out for me already, but it's probably not appropriate because it's from when I was about 10 months old.

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