Just Need a Little Something To Do

I need something to distract me from the copious amounts of reality television I’ve been addictively drawn to this last, well, year. So I think maybe I’ll start writing. It was something I was good at once. Lately,  I’m better at being slovenly unproductive and to be honest—its way more fun than having to come up with witty banter no one will read except for my grandmother. Her, and of course the co-workers I’ll force to read my work because I really want them to know that I  have a little potential to be something other than … what I am. And what am I? What am I doing? For the last year and a half I’ve been a counselor in enrollment services at a university. And honestly I don’t really even know what my title is because I’m versed in about 10 different things all having to do with getting into and going to school.

But, when former classmates and old family friends ask me what I do now I try really hard to make it sound way more important than what it is. Not that what I do is unimportant. But it’s a means to an end. It’s a step toward something  grand, exciting, lucrative, and hopefully in higher education because I’m actually interested in this world. It’s my first real job that pays my bills on time and allows me not to worry. The upside of what I do is that it’s Monday through Friday. 8am to 5pm. Weekends off. Paid leave. Two weeks paid vacation during the holidays. Good people around me. Lots of laughing and slyly making fun of people who come in with really stupid questions like: “So, I got this loan, do you know if I have to pay that back?” But, the best part is the opportunity to go to graduate school for free. Which, clearly I haven’t utilized yet but have every intention of doing so very soon.

The downside of this job is that I hear “I need to speak with an actual counselor,” on a daily basis.  Maybe its because I look 14. I am still getting acne on my chin every month in the same stop. THAT doesn’t stop when you enter your late twenties, I promise. Or, maybe it’s  because the walls of my office don’t go all the way to the ceiling.  But comments like that do  make me wonder when do I get to become and “actual counselor?” I mean, one where people don’t ask you that question because you look like a grown up. I am providing them with viable and pertinent information. I am. And my diploma is on the wall. It does say English though. Is that it? That’s got to be it. I bought some fake diamond earrings and I started wearing cardigans and slacks from the Gap. I hope that helps. Other than that, I literally sit on my ass for 9 hours a day and I’ve gained 35 pounds since I started working here. This job has made me love binge watching every TV series and independent-straight-to-DVD release on Netflix.

In a lot of ways this job is why I no longer write. I’m extremely boring now. I wasn’t kidding when I said I don’t worry anymore. Creative minds need to worry about something. It’s what makes us interesting. No one wants to read about some girl who comes home from work at 5:15, immediately changes into her pajamas, lays on the couch watching episode after episode of Luther and Downton Abbey, eats frozen yogurt for dinner and then goes to bed at 9:15 because it was such a long hard day. Yes, yes… it’s the job that’s made me fat…

But, really. People want to read about things that are interesting and exciting and intriguing.  My stories used to be a lot more like that. Terrible men in my life, sex, drugs, all the time in the world to run around town going hiking and swimming and playing darts at the bars until 2 am. Now I’m practically married and living in a town I’m incredibly uninterested in becoming acquainted with. It’s really hard to be self-absorbed and superficial and write about it these days because I’m mentally stable right now and I don’t write fiction.  I apologize if you’re already bored. My life is appropriate. Being appropriate is lame and I’m not creative enough to write about what I don’t know. You know, because they say “write about what you know.” I only know that Cody Brown is having problems with Christine and Mary is sad because Mariah is going to college. (Sister Wives reference. You’re welcome.) And, where the fuck did Haddie go on Parenthood? Why is she gone? Not that she really even added anything to the plot… Maybe I should write TV reviews. Why don’t I have a cat? …

Last summer I went to this bar back home where the high school graduating class from the year before me was having their 10 year reunion. I don’t know why I showed up there. I’m into this really antisocial phase in my life where leaving the house is like working on Christmas Day. Anyways, my best friend drags me to the bar and I’m dreading it because I don’t like people all that much and I’m trying my hardest to hide from running into someone I care nothing about. Needless to say, I’m standing up against the outdoor tiki bar, go to reach for a drink and hear from my right “OH! Oh, my god! How are you doing?!  What are you doing?!.” And it literally took everything in me to try and remember who this kid was. I had no idea. I couldn’t even describe him if you asked me to. He was wearing a green shirt, it was a button up Hawaiian polo and he was short. I still do not know who he is to this day. Yes, I’m a terrible person. But in my defense, this was not my graduating class.

So, I force an overly enthusiastic fake smile and say, “Oh my god, Hey how are you? You look great!” Hoping that he didn’t look the same 10 years ago, because obviously I look exactly the same. Still so thin.  He asks: “So what are you doing now?”, “Oh… you live here?”  An inflection of judgement in his tone. The tone I’m so familiar with because I too said “Oh, you live here” during the few occasions when I would come home from Asheville or Austin and run into people I hadn’t seen since high school. Now I know how it feels. I’m a bitch.  Then he proceeded to tell me: “Oh yeah, Well, you know I’m living in downtown Big City and I’m getting my PhD at Pretentious Expensive University  and now I’m the Head of something like the Nuclear Bio medical Medicine Department at the CDC.” And no, I don’t even know if that’s a real thing but it was something way better than enrollment counselor at a university. I lost him after that. I just blankly stared at him. Not because I was impressed, that’s a given.  And not because that crazy title made me feel like my job was unimportant because it doesn’t. But because that’s like… his thing. That’s the one reason he came back to his 10 year reunion. I just stared at him as he rambled on and on and imagined him sitting in first class on the plane ride here, rehearsing that speech over and over again while he drank a gin and tonic, wondering whether the green or red Hawaiian polo would complement his occupational dig the best, hoping that it wouldn’t come across as haughtily as it did. He obviously chose the sea foam green to lighten the blow for the really unsuccessful people in the room. Smart choice! He wanted to sound like the smartest and most successful person at the tiki bar. Probably because hes not memorable, and he knows it.  You know, I bet he doesn’t even remember me. It was early in the night. He was just testing it out on me, to see how it would come across, because he hadn’t said it out loud yet.

I guess the point of that is that it doesn’t really matter what we become or what people think of who we are or what we do. And that kid remembered me but we were never friends and he wasn’t interested in my life at all. He was interested in what he was doing and wanted to make sure that people knew who he was now and that what he was doing was important. That, I can totally relate to. We all like the idea of people giving a shit. I hope for him that some people that night cared and were impressed and weren’t just humored by his pretentious delivery. I bet he has a blog…

I might just be an enrollment counselor at a university but I do make decisions that affect people. Students are grateful for that. At least the ones who think I’m an actual counselor. That is a part of my life that’s fulfilling. This medium isn’t for my grandmother, or my co workers. I just need something to stimulate my mind outside of my 9-5. Gossip Girl is great but I feel like a total slob. I need something to keep me interested in my life. Because I’m bored and I’m boring and I need something to do for me. I’m not going to write about my favorite recipes for Chicken Noodle Soup and Pecan Pie or entries about how much I love volunteering  at the homeless shelter on the weekend and doing 5K’s to raise money for the local Humane Society. Even though those are things that would probably lighten my heart and the scale under the bathroom sink on the few occasions that I decide to step upon it. I feel good about this being an important endeavor.

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12 Responses to Just Need a Little Something To Do

  1. MissCaron says:

    Awesome. Can’t wait for more. And you’re NOT boring. XO


  2. Desiree says:

    Kim, we did have our differences in high school but I think, as adults, we have a lot in common. I love your blog, keep writing because I will keep reading!


  3. Jen says:

    LOVE IT! keep it up, It’s an easy read, and it sucks you in.


  4. Dan says:

    Do more writing and less counseling.


    • kimpryor says:

      Haha maybe one day


      • Dan says:

        I understand why the counseling job of course. I just wanted to point out the gift you have for writing. You have a keen eye for detail and a style that has a seductive flow that keeps me reading about nothing in particular.

        Like a Seinfeld episode:

        “What was that about?”
        “I don’t know, but I liked it.”

        If you aren’t easily embarrassed, check out Bonnie at http://www.lovemarriagesex.com/ who comments on my blog from time-to-time. She’s about your age and writes a pretty straight forward blog about relationship issues. I think you’d like her style if you are interested in the things she talks about and advocates.


      • kimpryor says:

        I will! Thanks for the comment! Its really nice to have ppl other than my family recognize my writing. Its been a long time since I reallg sat down and put someothings together. Your feedback is really appreciated!


      • Dan says:

        Thanks for your visit to my blog. I need to post again soon. I have no shortage of ideas and I have two drafts started but most of the time a switch clicks and it just flows out. I didn’t say quickly though; just that it flowed. Sometimes like the winter sap from a Vermont maple. I can be very chatty-like at times and it looks so easy, but it is all meticulously thought out as I write. Doesn’t mean I’m good at it, just meticulous with it. Then there are ones like the Dysfunctional Communication posts that are like drudge work with all the cross-referencing and checking the accuracy of typed-in quotes. I enjoy the teaching aspect of it, but like the style you get to play with better. And it is a form of play, isn’t it?


  5. cardiogirl82 says:

    I change into my pajamas immediately, too. 🙂


  6. Love. Love. Love. Keep this up. I really enjoyed your writing.


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