Friday, December 5, 2008

Sucker Punched

I just got the breath knocked out of me.

Huck's not eligible for unemployment. After all his work for WSU. And an extended decision making process by the state.

As with most graduate students, he worked as a TA his first semester: 2-3 courses. He then, as usual, worked as a Research Assistant. But his adviser ran out of funds. So he continued with the RA which was necessary for the degree and he also took on TA work to pay for the degree: again 2-3 courses. In spite of this, he excelled to the top of his class and made time for his family. He completed the degree one semester early. But WSU's accounting is...well... "differently-abled." So despite working two 20 hr/wk jobs for them for 18 months, they never paid into unemployment. Maybe that's common. But today, it feels like extraordinarily depraved behavior.

I don't know if, or ever, his summer fruit-picking or substitute teaching will become part of the "Unemployment" Equation.

And remember, when you see those unemployment numbers, they don't apparently include unemployed recent grads, or people who've worked for Universities.

If that school ever thinks they are getting the slightest penny of a donation, if we ever get the ability to do that, they are mistaken.

I don't think I'll recommend public universities to my kids. Neither Huck nor I have received the least bit of employment help. They staff their "Career Centers" with 18 year-olds on work-study.

As you can imagine, with my over-active sense of justice, I feel RATHER ILL right now.

I caught myself recommending that a woman I know here keep working on her college degree. And then I changed course, mid-conversation. Right now education is not a sure bet, it's an extremely expensive risk, in my experience.

In brighter news, though now eclipsed: We chopped down our tree last night. Five bucks, a map, a pink puff ball sunset, and a little mountain drive = one beautiful, fragrant Douglass Fir posing by the "fire."

And also, I get to call Bingo tonight at a fundraiser for Blue's school. I get to call it in Espanol!

And this week I joined the Raven Writer's Group. My first ever such foray into that sort of thing and it felt good, good people, good times. We'll see. I'm not all that in to JOINING much of anything (except the UU church).

And we have received the compassion of our friends and family recently, though not by our almae matres. And our spirits have been lifted, subsequently smashed, but I'm sure that's not permanent.

1 comment:

  1. As an update: my Bingo Calling went as well as could be expected since I haven't spoken Spanish regularly in 9 years. I only made 2 mispronunciations. And I actually got the crowd to do the, "Are you ready for Bingo!" "What's that? Did you say you were ready for Bingo?" "What did you say you were ready for?" So that was fun. I threw in some bad puns at B9 but restrained myself from "B1 with the Bingo". People DO give the "Bingo Eye." There were some really intense ladies, trying to stare me their numbers. WOW! I had NO Idea!
    FYI: other people can comment on this blog too! Give it a try!

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