Fake it till you make it

I am good at job interviews. When I was being interviewed for the job as Assistant Warden, I was asked if I could speak Irish. In my cockiest voice, putting on my richest brogue, I said “Tá Gaeilge agam”. The interviewers nodded and took notes. Clearly these three words were proof that I was fluent.

I forgot about that part of the interview until Tuesday. On Tuesday evening I got an email, asking if I would be the Assistant Warden in charge of the Irish-speaking apartments, which would include having to ensure that the residents speak Irish and participate in Irish language activities.

“This will be fine,” I told myself. I can brush up on my Irish over the summer, and by the time the students arrive, I’ll be fluent again.

Then I got another email, informing me that I would have to give interviews to incoming residents in June. Bugger! That doesn’t leave much time. The person who’s organising the interviews is Trinity College’s Irish Officer. Ironically, he interviewed me last year for a place in an Irish-speaking apartment on campus and I got turned down. Double bugger!

My general plan is to fake it till I make it.

I have been applying that same principle to my PhD. I still don’t feel that I’m in any way expert. I had the oral exam that I’d been dreading yesterday. And it went fine. It was gruelling. The examiner pushed and pushed and I kept trying to avoid my supervisor’s eyes, which I had no doubt were filled with disappointment. All I focused on was trying to sound confident. And I got away with it. I passed.

However, there is one section of the PhD that they’re insisting I re-write. It’s the section on my own relationship with the boys. Of course it is. Of course.

That won’t be hard at all.

I have been engaging in a bit of fakery about running. I didn’t let anyone know that after running 5K four times, I stopped. I didn’t run for two weeks. I let all my old excuses and insecurities sneak back in. Enough of that now. I ran again on Tuesday. It was good. And I’ll run again tonight, when I have no doubt I’ll kick serious ass.

And nowhere does one have to fake it more than in the world of dating. My gentleman friend had started texting again, but once again when I suggesting meeting up, he didn’t text back. My tolerance for this is ending, and I’ve promised myself a summer of love.

So, I’ve resuscitated my Gaydar profile. It’s the most popular site in gay dating and I did have a profile on it before. An awesomely bad profile. Apparently, according to my profile page, my favourite TV show is Seventh Heaven. And the headline on my profile was “Shwing”. As in Wayne’s World.

Who the hell was I when I wrote that? Who did I expect to see the word “shwing” and say to themselves, “Oh, that’s a profile worth clicking on. Look, he loves Seventh Heaven – I’d better message him now!” At a guess, I was about 21 at the time. I way prefer 31-year-old me.

Writing dating profiles is tough. Trying to strike a balance between being honest and being socially acceptable. Trying to say “I’m funny” without saying “I’m so funny, me. I’m such a laugh.” Trying to be honest about my size without coming across as apologetic. There’s a drop-down menu for “body type”. I had to choose between “stocky” and “large”. I didn’t know what the difference was, so I asked twitter. Within seconds, a newspaper editor told me I should use “stocky” as that implies “cuddly”. Apparently “large” means a “built like a brick shithouse”.

Anyway, I’m sure I’ll continue tweaking. Finding the best form of man-alluring fakery for me.

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