Friday, October 3, 2008

Master of what now...?

So if I've kept tabs right...

Holmes and Benson are professor types, and both are under 30.
Duerden's working on the PhD, maybe a year or two left.
Kirk is blocking chumps into an oblivion
Sandberg might be a doctor all ready (what ever happened to Sandberg?)
DH is in Med. School.
Vanderhorst is the king of Iceland.
Mikey and Brandy are teaching the kids.
Jed...I don't really know what Jed does, but he's got three kids and two houses (to my understanding)

And then there's me.

While all others seem to be at, or close to, a career destination, I find myself in the middle obtaining a degree...which will allow me to get...another degree. And while I knew this when I applied for this degree, it still chaps me a bit that when I'm fished I won't be done. I work hard, pass my classes, pass my comps, pass my thesis...

...and get to go to three to five more years of school and do it AGAIN! AHHHH!

If I go the theater history/crit. road I'll have taken probably eleven theater history/literature classes by the time it's all done. ELEVEN!

I think in the past, maybe in the fifties or something, I could have gotten a job at a community college with an MA, but with today's competitive job market there's just NO WAY a theater guy can get on at a school with out a PhD or MFA. Which leaves me with three choices.

1. PhD in Theater, Film or Performance Studies. This is probably the best route to take, but it's probably four or five more years of school.

2. MFA in Directing. I'd probably be a good candidate at many schools with my age and experience, and I'd enjoy the curriculum a bit more than the PhD stuff, but snagging a job would be tougher post graduation because most hoity-toity universities prefer PhD's.

3. Bite the bullet and work for the man. At my current job managers come and go at an alarming rate. If I had started at the front desk I'd probably be a manager by now. In a few years I'd move up the latter, probably move locations three or four times and eventually become a GM somewhere. Knowing the staff and management at the property I work at I've come to understand that it wouldn't be real hard to learn all the ins and outs, and I'd be a good manager. Smart enough to be good, Smart enough not to be TOO good. Stay off the radar in both directions. Would get good pay, and have GREAT hotel stay benefits.

BUT, I'd be a corporate sell out. I'd probably would hate my job until I was the poo-bah. Holidays wouldn't exist (remember that if you're ever eating at the Howard Johnson's on Christmas, some of the workers never get a holiday off) and bowing down to the creeps who yell and scream about complementary coffee and the temperature of their room would be just part of a days work.

But if I do option 3 all of my schooling wouldn't have contributed to my career. And knowledge for knowledge's sake is great, but I'd like to cash in this knowledge somewhere.

There's no easy answers, and frankly I'm about a year and a half away from needing to make a decision, so while you're all working at your careers in two years and are having a bad day, just remember you could be in a classroom with a stuck up professor asking you about the importance of Plato's cave as it relates to theater, and THEN maybe your job won't seem so bad.


  1. dude,

    i've said this before. this is not all just a test, this is all fodder for the story you're going to tell "on the couch" one day. when letterman says, "now, weren't you a bell hop or something while you were in school?" and you'll laugh genially at his mistake, and you'll say "something like that, dave. it's a funny story..."

    and professors, too, will say to their classrooms full of tired TMA students, "you all know tony gunn's story, right...?"

    no one remembers a story without conflict.

  2. I thought Jed only had one house. Does this post and the supposed other house connect with the last post and the naked lady in the tub? I'm starting to get really nervous.

  3. dang it you guys. i told you jayne would find this blog.

  4. I appreciate Jed's kind words, and I appreciate Rob's...I appreciate Rob.

    The two houses I referred to was a bit misleading for comedic purposes. I spoke with Jed about a house he bought, and his OLD house he hadn't sold yet at the time. So, technically two homes.

    And I certainly didn't mean Jed's second home with his polygamous second wife, Tina, and his second family, Jed Jr., Wilfred, and Jojo...uhh, if fact those people...don't even exist...I just made them up. Yes, that should stick.

  5. It's only this last year that I've stopped wishing I had majored in something else. I didn't really enjoy my masters degree, most of the classes were a waste of time. And it was pretty depressing when I moved back to Utah with my MFA and the only work I could find for 4 months was being an extra on Everwood. Hey, $75 a day, that's not bad. Except 10% goes to the agency. And I have to drive up to Salt Lake. And it's for 12 hours a day. Crap. I did that three or four times. Then I got hired at the MTC 3/4 time. Then a year later got my first full time job at the High School. Out of the 10-15 college positions I've applied for, I still haven't even gotten an interview. Not even at UVSC! So, it ain't easy, going the academic/arts route, that's for dang sure.

    I can definitely see you as a great teacher/scholar/playwrite/director. I can also see you as a great businessman, if it was your own business. But I can't really see you working at the Marriott or any other big corporation for a career. Too much like Jim perpetually working for Michael Scott. Seems like the golden ticket would be to combine the theatre knowledge and talent with your business skills and start a production studio or school or something like that. I mean what business does Halestone or Stone Five or whatever have existing? I guess there is a certain demand for terrible content like theirs, but there's plenty of room for cool stuff too.

  6. I completely agree with Brandie. You're one of a few people I know who is really good at making things happen. I can totally see you using your talents and training to do something really entrepreneurial.

  7. I'm also with Brandon, Utah could use a production studio/school with you at the helm.

    And for what it's worth, I saw Sandberg last Christmas time, he was desperately playing the game of "let me impress you so you will hopefully be interested in picking me as one of your residents" at the Primary Children's. And though he now carries the letters M.D. at the end of his name he still has another 3 yrs before he will obtain his freedom from whatever institution has given him the title of "resident" on their payroll. Only 3 yrs assuming he doesn't decide to do a fellowship which would place him yet another 3 yrs from freedom.

    As for myself, though I will also have the letters M.D. added to the end of my already parent given initials (MD, M.D. parental foreshadowing, blows me away just thinking about it); I also will be selling my soul for the meager sum of ~$9/hr for the next 4 yrs to one of the 34 institutions I'm currently playing the game of "I'm pretty awesome, and that's why you should like me" with. Bumping my grand total to 14 yrs post PHS work.

    And at the end of it all, regardless of how good I become at my career, never will you see an anesthesiologist standing on stage at the Kodak theater thanking his mom for being his inspiration.

  8. Hey, we need to welcome DH to the mix.

    The Med school song and dance sorta blows my mind. I just don't understand the stages, even though I've seen the first four seasons of 'Scrubs'.

  9. Alright DH is here. I don't know how you guys do med school+residency+specializations. Good night!

  10. not to make anyone feel worse, but DH also runs marathons when he has a spare weekend.

    that's MARATHONS.

  11. Despite popular belief I am not yet the king of Iceland. Though I do have a large following of imaginary minions across the globe...

    I could probably get more support for a dictator-for-life position if I wasn't still a student at the Y. Yea I'm still here. This fall I broke double digits for ecclesiastical endorsements.