By Sam Beaumont
“So, what are you up to at the minute?”
Ever since I finished Uni last year, this question is one that I have been unable to escape. My Mum constantly wants to know, friends view it as an essential part of a catch up, and even passing acquaintances seem curious. Although that might not sound particularly troubling to some of you productive people, when your genuine answer is often, “pretty much nothing”, constantly having to go through this staple of polite conversation can get pretty tiresome. Inevitably, after a brief and hopeless struggle to try and make the odd course application and a little bit of freelance work sound impressive, these interactions have left me feeling like a bit of a disappointment. That is until recently…
Recently, things have taken a turn. Like a couple of weekends back, for example, when I had to go to my girlfriend’s Grandma’s house for dinner. (The Grandma in question is a no-nonsense, matriarch type with high expectations for her granddaughters suitor, so a dinner at her house is prime time for a grilling over my continued unemployment.) But this time when the questions came, instead of having to construct transparent lies about all the stuff I was up to, I realised I actually had proper answers.
“Well, in three weeks I’ll be starting a post-grad advertising course” I told her. She gave a surprised yet approving nod. “Yeah, it’s one of the best in the country apparently, and they have great networking opportunities”. Suddenly she actually seemed slightly impressed. I kicked on. “And since I got back from Thailand where I’d been flown out to do some freelance design work…”. Nailing it. “…I’ve also been creating a recipe book that should be finalised and sent to the printers within a few days”. Then something happened I never thought I’d see. She actually smiled at me. Acceptance at last!
It was in that moment I realised that thanks to the pressure of committing to SCA, I might actually have become a productive member of society again. It’s a great feeling, and one I’ll be very glad to get used to.