Thursday, March 15, 2012

"I Never Knew But I Do Now"

Emerging out of darkness with either a poorly paraphrased Conrad reference, or a perfectly poignant nod to the 85 people worldwide who saw "Scream 4". I have returned to beat upon this typing instrument and shake the dust off of this blog, now hypothetically residing in the most Amish section of cyberspace possible, Lancaster Pennsylvania.

All flexing of literacy and thesaurus aside, it's a pleasure to back and I thank you for your patience and support as I settle into my new PA digs and pseudo long-term employment. I imagine a great many of you are tuning in to see how things are going; namely the job, new people and new area.

Regarding the job, there's less to say than you might think for a couple of reasons.

1. While writing product descriptions for various commercial and household kitchen equipment is not the most boring thing in the world to do, it may well be the most boring thing in the world to talk about. Rather than struggle to make the finer points of kettles and salt shakers sound compelling, I'm going to pull ye olde faste forwarde and narrow the experience down to a couple, likely less-than-concise points.

2. While I'm incredibly thankful to be employed and enjoy a lot of aspects of what I do, I don't want speak too candidly about the experience because you never know who's reading.

For those not well versed in all things Poli (I don't blame you), I'm essentially writing product descriptions and, very soon, blogs for a company that sells restaurant equipment over the internet. The job itself was quite an adjustment on a lot of levels, as you can imagine. I think firstly the realization that life on your own, own is different than even living on your own in college. I mean, in college, you learn to handle bills, manage money, handle landlords, work with/live with people, use your freedom constructively etc., it's definitely not a walk in the park sometimes, but in hindsight you at least had people all around in similar situations. Succeeding in college is not a breeze, I would never tell you otherwise and have the 3.8 cumm. to back it up, but, in a sense, you always had "college" in common with people. These are people you really grew into adults with and those bonds, positive or negative, are permanent and strong as can be. To be thrust into a place full of actual strangers at different points in their lives makes for a very different adjustment. It was weird to kind of be truly alone for a couple of days (before I opened up to people and at work and vice versa while trying to learn the ins and outs of this new environment. It was definitely a little overwhelming, but something that I undoubtedly learned a lot from.

I will say that since the start of my time at Clark Associates, while not exactly a breeding ground for social interaction, everyone I've spoken to has been nothing but nice and supportive and I'm proud to call a few of them my friends, even at the early stages of this not quite career. One perk of the job is that it works a little more with computers and html than I thought it did. Now, usually computers and I go together like grape jam and ceiling fans, but I think that's why I'm enjoying learning about that stuff because I really feel like I'm learning applicable skills from scratch and, dare I say, doing so quite quickly and efficiently. I kind of feel like that's part of what an entry level position is all about; having no freaking idea what's going on and powering through anyway. I can honestly say I've been working my tail off to succeed and I study where I can and I feel like the right people have been impressed with my progress, given my starting point. You'll have to take my word for it that at a place like this, praise comes at a premium.

Learning the system at Clark has had its hurdles, but it was amazing how much of a learning process the writing itself has been. I mean, I had no expectations of riding into the place on horse and buggy and suddenly being awesome at it, but I admit that I was kind of under the impression that if you showed me the technological aspects of the job, the writing would take care of itself. Not to sound immodest, but that's kind of how things have always come to me ever since I first put pen to pad, but this was a change. My task was essentially to take a syrup dispenser and make it seem like you're tabletop wouldn't look right without it. I promise, this is harder than it sounds and definitely required a bit of a learning curve. I remember on day one saying to myself, more seriously than I'd like to admit, "Well, it's a syrup pourer; 12 ounces; pours syrup nicely." For a while I felt like I'd rather write a novel in a night than one of these descriptions, but again, I learned quickly thanks to a lot of help from those around me and I'm really starting to find my groove there, which is a relief in itself, knowing that the people around me know that I'm working hard and willing to and capable of learning.

Regarding life outside the mecca of cookware, I'm going to save most of that for another post this weekend, but I've started playing in a Monday night basketball league, spend most weekends with good friends in York, have a place in the Lanc where I watch basketball when I can, made a couple friends here in and out of the workplace, and am going to start hitting up a couple open mics next week to fill up some admittedly empty Tuesday-Thursday evenings. Again, much more about the specifics of more social aspects life amongst the Mennonite.

Song of the Day: Consequence-Incubus
Jazz Song of the Day: It Might As Well Be Spring-Rene Marie

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