Natural laws

August 16th, 2009

So a phenomenon of nature has been taking place for the past few weeks here by my desk – I’m calling it the Law of Conservation of Gnats. You see, there is always exactly one gnat flitting around in my immediate vicinity. If I kill that gnat and go away for a time, there is always exactly one new gnat flitting around when I return to my desk. There are never two or more at the same time; it’s as if there’s a waiting room or on-deck circle somewhere, and the gnats are all patiently waiting for their turn to visit. Would that I could find the waiting room and a can of industrial strength Raid.

A few spiders have also noticed this phenomenon and have accordingly tried to set up shop in the area; I dispatched several of them to the afterworld yesterday. Fortunately they’re the really tiny ones – hardly bigger than the gnats themselves – or an exterminator and I would be getting acquainted right about now.

When I grow up

August 5th, 2009

So I’ve had a few months now to get used to this being laid off thing and to figure out what I want to do both immediately and in the near future. It took a lot of reading and thinking and writing exercises and praying and working and praying some more and fasting and even more writing, but I’ve finally discovered what I want to do when I grow up – and I’ve even worked up the courage to go public with it.

I want to teach people to write, both through school application essay editing and through one-on-one tutoring or small classes. This probably does not surprise anyone reading this post, especially given that I’ve been editing successful application essays for top-tier business schools (including Harvard, London, Wharton, Duke, and MIT) for several years already, and I love it. I love editing and I love teaching applicants to write more effectively as I edit their work. ‘Tis a rush.

And it will probably be no further surprise to learn that I don’t want to do it here. I’m hoping to stay in Boston about another year and then move to…

Europe…

Specifically…

Finland.

Miksi Suomi? (Why Finland?) For one thing, because that’s where I feel I’m being directed. Plus, the language is fun to speak (though ttj tells me that most of what I’ve learned so far sounds quite formal and nobody speaks that way anymore). And because I’m already an honorary Finn with close friends there. And because I’ve wanted to live in Europe and experience different cultures and learn different languages for more than two decades now. And because, with the home office setup that two dear Suomi friends have helped me to establish, I can. (She says with determination.)

In preparation for this new life of mine, I’ve recently spent time reading how-to business books (in the somewhat embarrassingly bright and recognizable yellow-and-black For Dummies series), researching competition, working on a marketing plan, and signing up two (hopefully three) new clients. I really really need to create a website and business cards, which things are on the to-do list. To my surprise, I’m finding the business aspects of this endeavor to be fun and interesting rather than intimidating and overwhelming. Maybe I have some business acumen after all. Who knew?