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Posts Tagged ‘Overlook Hotel’

Wanted:

Winter caretaker for the Overlook Hotel.  Duties include upkeep and minor repairs.  Perks include large amounts of free time.  Perfect for ABDs.

I’ve previously noted some of the ways that works of fiction (such as Candide, The Lord of the Rings, and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn) are related to graduate school and the job market.  Settling down to watch a scary movie on Halloween night, however, I found what may be the best dramatization I’ve seen about working on one’s dissertation (especially when on fellowship): The Shining.  For example:

As a graduate student there were many times when my wife would come home from work and ask me how my work went during her time away.  Typically, I would respond to this with some vague statement intended to disguise the fact that I had gotten up at 10, read things on the internet, taken a shower at 12:30, eaten lunch, opened a document to work on, read other things on the internet, taken a nap, and then read some things on the internet until she got home.  If she ever called during the day and needed me to bring something to her, the disruption to my “work” had the potential to frustrate me to no end.  It wasn’t so much that I was working but that I had the potential to work and may actually start doing so at any moment.  Any interruption was thus an interruption of my potential to actually accomplish something.  All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.

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