FROM THE PLACES I’VE LIVED POST-GRAD

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             Los Angeles, Boca Raton, New York City

“You might think what I’m writing is crazy, and if you do, I suggest you grab a backpack and hit the road for a while. And when your body says it’s time to go home, don’t. Just keep going.” — John Mayer

 

About Me: After waddling off the stage at graduation, wearing heels a size too big and a smile a size too wide, I packed up everything that was not property of the University into my little red car, adjusted my rear-view mirrors to give me a snapshot of all the things I didn’t want to leave and I drove south. I had no game plan, no job, no permanent mailing address, no meal plan, no “first-year in the real world” advisor and no chance to claim a “grade forgiveness” if i messed up a semester of life.

Please see below a highlight of the who, what, where, why and when, of the places that I’ve established a residence at since I was handed a diploma, given a eviction notice to move out of my on campus apartment, and demanded by my elders to get a stable source of income.

Los Angeles, CA 

September 2010-June 2011

  • Successfully organized and created an “I Schlepp for Johnny Depp” fan club meeting outside the back door entrance of his movie premiere for “Rio” in Westwood. Provided loyal fans with poster-board, high-energy chants, and patience, as we waited for 3+ hours in the Santa Ana winds for Johnny to come out. Networked with a TMZ reporter and a large 300 lb body guard of Mr. Depp who complimented my persistence by briefly teasing me with the idea of receiving an autograph from JD in the form of a restraining order.
  • Taught myself proper LA lingo, which mainly consisted of street names and highways, since all conversations led to the incomprehensible and disgusting traffic one has to put up with on a daily basis. Became a highly regarded guru in identifying which roads to avoid, guiding comrades to never be caught on the 101 after 3pm or attempt to coast on San Vicente Boulevard, unless they want to waste their Friday nights bumping bumpers.

Boca Raton, FL

July 2012-December 2012

  • Represented my entire age bracket in taking part in nightly early bird specials. Was a key figure in determining which deli’s had the best deal on a pastrami and rye sandwich and which restaurants had a 2-4-1 special that lasted past 5:30pm.
  • Admitted, out loud, after running into an acquaintance I haven’t seen since before I got my braces off in the 8th grade, that no, i’m not back “home” for the holidays and “yes”, I’m 23 and living back home in my pink-flowered childhood bedroom, that’s filled with Beanie Babies and the sudden spotting of Pogs. Elegantly responded to her question of If I am doing okay by saying, “I’m just going through a phase”. Patiently watched her bat her chunky mascara eye lashes in my face, while simultaneously listened to her tell me how great living in some ridiculous place like Paris is, charging things on her credit card and eating so many baguettes she’s shocked she’s not fat yet. Kept my cool as she patted her freshly acrylic fingers on my shoulder and said, she’ll keep me in mind if she hears anything–which prompted a similar reaction that I give people when they tell me “Honey, I’ll pray for you”.
  • Devoted every waking hour to applying for jobs in LA, NYC, Costa Rica and Mars. Familiarized myself with every job posting site on the World Wide Web, including Craigslist. Attended countless phone, in person and Skype interviews where in the midst of trying to “woo” employers, was asked to answer oddball questions such as “what kind of Superhero would you be?” or “Why do you want to be a writer?” or “Where do you see yourself in 20 years?”, in which I grunted, snorted, let out a couple of pregnant pauses–followed by buzzing umms–and politely answered their nonsensical questions with, “Katniss Everdeen”.

New York City, NY

January 2012- present

  • Accomplished packing up 23 years of my life into two suitcases and exited off a plane on top of something I had never seen, smelt or touched before: snow. Discovered an apartment that was strategically located across the street from a library and a $1 pizza shop.
  • Mastered the art of wearing leg warmers, long underwear and a snuggie out in public to restrain from receiving frost bite or hypothermia on my extremities. Developed a skin tight relationship with the three p’s: pants, parkas and public transportation.
  • Gained an established sense of direction by playing the age old game of trial and error with the subway system. Rode the 6 to the F to the Q just to end up in Jamaica…Queens, and had to navigate my way back in to the city with color coded, faded, map inside of a subway cart while steadfastly collapsing, from jolting movement,  on top of a homeless man, a small child in a stroller, and someone’s leftover Chinese food.

Skills:

  • Expert at cramming an insane amount of clothes, shoes, and bedding into suitcases and then bribing TSA, by batting my eyelashes and claiming “I had no idea size mattered”,  to let me check overweight suitcases.
  • Master at transforming nooks, crannys, floors, and tray tables on airplanes into comfortable environments to catch some zz’s
  • Well diversified in using the map app on my iPhone (well, before they changed it) allowing me to know where i am (unless I’m in Brooklyn) at all times.

References:

  • Martha from TSA who gave me a recent  full-body pat down and can confidently tell you about my up’s and down’s

 

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I’m Jen Glantz. I’ve been a published writer for over 13 years, spilling my words into magazines (ranging from style to scuba diving), newspapers, websites and even this one time, a speech, for someone who didn’t speak a word of English. What drives my words, my site, my writing, is the power of relating to people. I find that many people, especially young girls, feel so alone and quite often they feel embarrassed. I want to shatter those feelings! I want them to read what I write and understand that it’s okay to be a little outside of the box, but most importantly, that it is okay to just be who they are.

3 Comments

  • Reply November 30, 2012

    Jackie

    simply amazing<3 sounds just like my NY living experience.

  • Reply December 11, 2012

    SISKO

    Loved learning about your travels! Especially Martha from TSA, she seems like quite the woman.

  • Reply December 26, 2012

    Laura Bennet

    I like your style :) My compliments to an enterprising and entertaining young woman.

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