Future tense

One of the best things about having a blog is that I don’t have to tell my news to people one by one. I can just announce it on my blog and then everyone knows. Well, almost everyone. There are the times when I meet someone and I’m telling them something and I’m trying to read from their reaction whether or not they’ve read the blog and know this already or not. Or, as happens very often, did they half-read it and only know a bit of the story? Most famously, there is the time when I was living in Hall and I was going to meet a man from India in a coffee shop and bring him home for some naughty shenanigans. In the end, the meet-up was postponed, and I had strangers on Twitter writing to me to know if I’d  had sex with him yet. I was able to announce the postponement (and eventual cancellation) of my South Asian nooky on the blog and didn’t have to tell anyone individually.

The same goes for the results of my interviews.

I drove to Dublin to vote on Friday. As I was on my way home, I got a call. It was from the nice HR man  in the Dublin job. He told me that I hadn’t got the job. Actually, he said it in a much nicer way than that. He said that I had been deemed appointable and that I had come in second place, but that they were offering the job to another candidate. He said a lot more, all of it nice, and told me that he’d be calling me again this week, as the process still wasn’t over and he’d have a final answer for me then.

I have no idea what this means. I don’t know why he didn’t just say I didn’t get the job. I guess he was just being nice.

Ever since then, my brain has split into two. There is the part of my brain that says that I was second choice for the Vietnam job and I still got it in the end, that I was second choice for the Istanbul job and I still got offered that in the end. I was so psychologically ready for this new job. I had been looking for places to live on Daft. I had decided what time I’d take my lunch break. I had thought about what I would hang on my office walls. I had planned what clothes I’d wear to work. I had chosen the gym I’d join. I even had a back-up gym, just in case. And the money. I had calculated my income tax, and planned the rate at which I’d pay off my loans. It was going to be able to afford to go to see shows. I’d never run out of petrol again. I’d never take a route to avoid a motorway toll again. I’d get a haircut whenever I wanted. I’d be able to buy a new pair of jeans. And order pink and fluffy things on the internet. And go to the doctor if I need to. Or a dentist, or a counsellor, or an acupuncturist. And a bit of me is still planning on the assumption that I’ve got this job.

The other part of my brain is the one I use when I actually talk to people. When I rang my mother, I told her I hadn’t been offered the job. This part of me is moving on.

It was easy to distract myself over the weekend. It was the general election count. And for once, there was no one around to distract me. It was glorious! I got to sit alone and listen to the counts being announced on the radio. I listened from 8:00 am till 2:30 am non-stop. And more or less the same on Sunday. The radio came into the loo with me. I didn’t shower. I bloody love elections. I was physically sick with excitement the night before the count at the very thought of it.

I follow two types of people on Twitter. Approximately half of the people I follow are politicians and journalists and lawyers and campaigners and activists. So of course they were tweeting non-stop about the election too. The other half of people I follow are thirsty, shallow, pop-culture-obsessed gays. They weren’t tweeting about the election. They were tweeting about the revelation that Liam from One Direction is now in a relationship with Cheryl Fernandez-Versini. To be honest, this was almost as exciting as the election. It truly was the best weekend ever.

One of the people who I voted for on Friday, a former TD, was someone who tweeted me about my blog after the aforementioned post about the time I didn’t have sex with a man from India. Ireland is a very small place.

Anyway, I got an email yesterday. I didn’t get the Manchester job either. That was a big relief.

But it did put everything in context. I had panicked in January. I let my Dad’s health and my mother’s worries about her children get the better of me. I had known that January and February would be tough financially all along. And I did have one or two financial setbacks. And I wasn’t managing to live the life I’d committed to. I certainly wasn’t being my best Connor. And so here I was finding myself applying for these jobs that had never been part of the plan. I didn’t want these jobs. I had plans. And yet I was applying. And I was investing myself in these applications.

I mean, I’m due to earn over €2500 in the next few weeks. I will get out of this money pit. And yes, I owe three different friends substantial sums of money. And yes, I can’t afford to cut my hair or to get my car washed, but I’ve never been short of money for food or petrol or electricity, because people have been generous. And yes, I missed my first car payment and am avoiding calls from the car dealer. And I think I’ve missed a loan repayment too. But I’m up-to-date with my rent and there’s money coming soon and I will be able to cover things. I will.

I can make living this life here work. I can earn enough money to do it. A big part of it is spending less money on food. I find it easy to spend over €30 a day on food, which adds up to more than €800 a month. I’ve now grown to 27 stone 12 pounds, yet another new record. I need to stop wasting so much of my money on food – food that’s killing me slowly. At the rate I’m going, I will die sometime in my 50s – the internet says so, so it must be true.

So yes, I have to change things. I have to become the person I want to be. To be creative, to do work I enjoy, to be with people I enjoy, to be healthy and happy and to have some degree of financial security. Will a new job change anything? I don’t know. I don’t think so. Yes, financial security might make a big difference. But would it make me more likely to be any better/happier? Would it make me less likely to run away after 6 months? If I can’t grab life by the balls and achieve things when I have time and headspace here, would I do it when I was working full-time? I know I have had great periods of my life when I was busy, and I’m open to it, but I don’t know if it’s what I should be aiming for. Being busy can just postpone a problem until it explodes.

If I get offered this job as the second choice by some miracle, I’ll take it. Of course I will. But I’m not going to frantically apply for full-time work everywhere else. I need to change me and how I live my life, not my context. I could spend the rest of my life looking around for the right context, the right job, the right house, the right city, the right boyfriend, but none of that will make any difference unless I can get a handle on me. So my number one project is me. The job is way down the list.

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