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Chinese Bran Muffins

USA | Saturday, 24 October 2009 | Views [541] | Comments [2]

For grad school, I have to write a biographical sketch for each program for which I am applying.  Give me a topic, and I can bang out a half decent draft in a day.  Wait?  What's that you say?  I have to write about myself? 

I can't write about myself.  Perhaps autobiographies are more clear and concise as they do cut out the middle man, but I think that an aire of arrogance plagues my best efforts.  I did good in school.  I've worked for a while.  Just look at my numbers.  Do I have to throw in some commentary on how good I think that I am?

In any case, each sketch prompts you to include your plans after graduation.  Somewhat sophomoric, I always roll my eyes at the mention of this and think back to those days in kindergarten when we would each stand up and talk about what we wanted to do when we grew up.  I'm sure Johnny is not a professional baseball player, Jimmy is not a deep sea diver, and Jessica is now working at a truck stop off of exit 37 instead of becoming the worlds leading authority on veterinary medicine.  I am certainly not a dentist.  Please, hold your laughter.  I was even a nerd as a child.  A dentist?  Really?  What the hell.  I also wanted to get married and move into a house next to my mother.  Of which, the latter is a terrible idea no matter what the situation, and the former is growing increasingly less appealing as my wanderlust reaches critical mass.

I digress.  Much like a wizard's sleeve, my plans are very loose.  I do know of two things that absolutely must be a part of my life.  Research and Chinese.  I paid too much money to squander a technical degree on managing kayak rentals, and I've dedicated enough time to Chinese to know that it is simply the love of my life.  It is heartbreakingly challenging with bewitching beauty...the Elizabeth Bennet to my Fitzwilliam Darcy. 

As masterful as my descriptive talents are, I have to consider my audience.  I have to make the aforementioned masterpiece into its bran muffin equivalent.  It has to be ugly, coarse, and suck the moisture out of the reader's life.  That's what these people like. 

Going back to wanderlust, my first trip to China is only four weeks away.  It is said that China is like the immensity of space in that it cannot be comprehended, only experienced.  It is also said that China is like trying to remember a song that you began to write before you were born.  I plan on exploiting my geographic and cultural isolation to rediscover the lyrics to the song of my future.  See, that transcendental jive will be lost on those PhD chumps.

Tags: bran, china, grad school



Reading that was like trying to make my brain do sit-ups at four in the morning. Still, despite the fact that I've not read anything even remotely brain-stimulating in quite a while, I liked it. I'll have to read it again when I'm more awake in order to fully appreciate it. :)

  godohell Oct 26, 2009 12:56 PM


Excellent. Your prose is like Van Gogh's Starry Night, whereas mine is like little Jimmy's finger paintings that hang on his parents refrigerator. too bad you are not applying for a PhD in English literature, because this blog could be your ticket in.

  joshuapatterson23 Nov 19, 2009 12:48 PM

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