universityoflies

roasting marshmellows in phd hell

Physical labor is rewarding!

with 4 comments

I’ve spent this last week using a paint roller instead of a pen.

Being really really good looking is hard work.

And I have come to two conclusions as a result of my ‘work experience.’

1. while listening to the radio helps the day go quickly, this is problematic cause the radio sucks.  I just have to get that one off my chest.  Radio DJs may be the most obnoxious people in the world ever.  Also, this realization is bittersweet, because it’s the only job in the world I’m qualified for as it involved prank calling people using bad ‘foreign’ accents.  And they literally play the same 8 songs all day long.  Cue my Carly Rae Jepsen induced insomnia.  Also, what is with the insane focus on the weekend?  Monday is shit cause it’s the start of the work week, tuesday sucks cause Friday is far away, Wednesday is ‘hump’ day (wtf), thursday oh you’re so close to the weekend, and Friday I’m in love?  I guess it’s something to talk about but it just seems like wishing your life away.

Sorry for that rant and I’m sure its nothing new to anyone but me.

Now for point 2, a little more suited to the subject of this blog:

I’m certainly not the first person to point out that there is something gratifying about doing physical work.  It’s satisfying to have tangible evidence of what you’ve been doing.  To step back at the end of the day and look at the rooms I’ve painted felt very fucking good.  Like, shit, I DID that!  You’re welcome!  I felt like michelangelo or one of the other skilled ninja turtles (I do not suffer from self esteem problems, obvs).

And for about 3 seconds I contemplated what my life would be like if I only did this kind of work.  But there is a danger in oversimplifying or reducing this kind of work to being more legitimate or rewarding or something like that.  There’s certainly a limited shelf life on how long a person can paint all day or crawl under sinks or fix roofs.  Especially with the retirement age rising, you could find yourself on your knees at age 60.  (That was not a prostitute joke.  Really.)  Anyways I’m still fairly young and in decent nick, and at the end of the day, I was so freaking sore.  All of that ‘free time’ that people supposedly have when they’re not bogged down with academic guilt was completely wasted on me as I was too tired to even veg out in front of the television.  I’m kind of grateful to head back to the library.

According to his website, the dude who wrote Shop Class as Soulcraft now splits his time between operating his small business and being a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture.  Sounds like the best of both, no?

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Written by universityoflies

July 23, 2012 at 08:50

4 Responses

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  1. Sounds like you should listen on Pandora or Spotify instead

    EquationForLife

    July 23, 2012 at 13:58

    • Good point, EquationForLife, but I was on a site with no electricity or wifi.. only a little battery operated radio. ah well, I am sworn off commercial radio for life.

      universityoflies

      July 23, 2012 at 14:21

      • but then you won’t be able to enjoy awesome parodies of songs like Call me Maybe:

        Of course, there’s also a Star Wars and a Barack Obama version.

        EquationForLife

        July 23, 2012 at 14:39

      • THAT IS AMAZING!!!! I’d rather have this stuck in my head, thanks 🙂

        universityoflies

        July 23, 2012 at 21:11


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