Because I may be a beggar, and you may be the Queen

Posted by September Blue Sunday, 20 January 2008

When my friend L was redecorating her spare room, a lengthy and tiring job that required large amounts of furniture-moving, spider-chasing and junk removal, she told me she wanted the whole thing to happen in a montage. Painting done a chunk at a time to the sound of some chirpy pop number, interspersed with shots of L and her boyfriend wiping sweat from their foreheads, sorting old shoes into pairs, polishing floors, laughingly flicking paint at each other - and the whole thing over and done by the final bars.

So I've decided: I'd like the next few months of my life (post-PhD, pre-finally getting a job please God please) to go by in a montage, too. This is not a particularly productive or interesting time, I'm fairly sure all the important stuff could be crammed into four minutes or so, and it'd be much less tedious and much more cheerful to watch in light-hearted, quirky montage form.

It'd have to start off with applying for jobs, of course (chin in hands, staring miserably at CV?). Coffee cups building up around the computer. Running for the bus in the rain, umbrella flipping inside-out in comical manner; scrabbling between sofa cushions for change; marking student work with my eyes closed; ringing the closing bells at the library (which could also connote 'Gradual Dissatisfaction With Minion Job and Minimal Pay', so there could be a few of these - first time, ringing bells after carefully reading time-list and checking watch against main clock; second time, ringing bells after glancing at watch and rolling eyes; third time, ringing bells without looking up from a book); flipping through depressing 'There have been no jobs matching your chosen search criteria' e-mails from; dancing round the living room in pyjamas to the tune from Flashdance (I don't do this, but what the hell, it's a montage, I could); washing dishes; throwing away bank statements unread; turning sofa upside down and thumping it to see if it'll dislodge any more coins; staring glumly at the goldfish; typing madly away at an article, then deleting 17 out of the last 18 sentences; shaking head at CV in sad, resigned manner.

The tune should be the Fratellis' 'Whistle for the Choir', which gets the mood just right, and also fits really nicely for the job application process ('Is it out of line / if I was to be bold and say would you be mine? / Because I may be a beggar, and you may be the Queen / And though I may be on a downer, I'm still ready to dream...')


  1. francofou Says:
  2. This is the time to breathe deeply, pour a glass of wine, lean back, and read the good books on your list. Once you get your job, it will be a lot harder. Think of it as a sabbatical.

  3. The wine suggestion's a good one, but oh, how I wish this was like a sabbatical. I work around 40 hours a week at my ragtag collection of part-time jobs (when they disappear come summer, I am in big, big trouble) and do my academic work in my free time. But, hey, at least I'm not trying to fit writing a PhD in that time any more, so it does feel a bit like heaven.