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  • Harry Jensen

May 2, 2020

Today was our anniversary, and Cecilia had no idea — victory! I have won the next year of our relationship.

I talked to an alumnus from Reed’s Career Coach program for recent graduates. I wanted some direction as to where I could find employment, contacts or connections to industries that actually wanted workers and dared even to pay them.

Doreen reached out immediately, and told me via email that she might be able to offer some help. During our call, though, she seemed determined not to give me any concrete leads. She suggested that I apply to work at companies I really wanted to work at, especially if they stated that they were not hiring during the COVID-19 crisis.

“The really exciting part about the job-market right now is that lots of orgs are pivoting, and they have no idea what to do,” Doreen assured me. “If they don’t know what they want, then you can make your own job.”

If I can’t get a real job, a fictional one seems like a real stretch. I told Doreen that I had reached out to Reed’s alumni network because I have dried out my social connections, and I need some new nodes in my network. As nice as she was, Doreen proved to be a dead node, a cauterized root. When I asked her again about any connections she might have, she instead suggested that I talk to anyone I already know and see if I could get in with good with them. Who do these people think that I know? Maybe I’ll have better luck with the other person I’m in contact with, a retired choral conductor who graduated 50 years ago.

“Sing for anyone, even if they don’t want you to,” she might say. “The great think about the music industry right now is that if no one wants you to sing, you can just sing your own song!”


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