Don’t Worry — I’ve Got a Lifejacket


Well, I didn’t get the public relations internship at Edelman Inc. I’m treating it as a blessing in disguise for two reasons

1. I don’t know the first thing about public relations. Not really, anyway. I received the news via e-mail from Edelman HR — classy, by the way — and their decision was apparently based on my lack of “relevant experience.” (This is to say my “experience” was irrelevant.)

I’m not going to argue their point. The reality is I would’ve been a lost little puppy on day one, and they were looking for someone who could come and be of use. That wasn’t me. Both sides agree on that one.

2. I realized I’m a journalist. I can’t wear the fake smile, do the song and dance necessary to be in PR. I’m a truth-seeker, someone who is naturally curious and constantly skeptical. When I was entertaining the idea of actually working in PR, I felt an emptiness. It just wasn’t the kind of writing I wanted to do.

The only “relevant experience” I have comes from journalism. I hadn’t considered journalism a practical career for about two years, thanks to the increasing number of studies showing the industry in severe — and maybe irreparable — decline. While searching for jobs yesterday, I found a general reporter position for one of the local fishwraps. It’s a community paper that covers three smaller suburbs southwest of Portland.

This is exciting. And maybe nothing will shake out and I’ll be like so many other young journalists who feel time and technology robbed them of opportunity. But on the upside, I know enough about social media and “New Media” to where I should be a prime candidate for some positions. (Some being the lower-end, general assignment reporters. Can you use Twitter at City Council meetings?)

Obviously, I won’t be hearing anything for a few days. So, I’m going to wait out this rainy Labor Day Weekend with Chuck Palahniuk’s new one, Pygmy.

4 thoughts on “Don’t Worry — I’ve Got a Lifejacket

  1. You’ve got the right attitude for this whole unemployment thing, that is no doubt the most important thing.

    When you’re ballsy enough to be a little picky and at the same time, self-aware enough to know that some jobs just aren’t for you, that’s huge. Keep it up.

  2. I wish I had some advice for you, Andrew. I have been sending out some writing stuff in SASE’s and some of the people don’t even bother to send the envelope back. This is the biggest difference between the “Career Builder” world and the real world that I have found. There is an impression out there that certain rules apply and I don’t think that there really are certain rules.

    Hang in there my friend.


  3. This weekend in Mankato I reconnected with an old classmate of ours in Mass Comm. We talked about how rough it was to find a job. He asked me if I knew what you were doing now. I updated him from what I’ve read in your blog. His reply: “That’s too bad. He shouldn’t do PR. He should write.” He and I talked about when we were seniors and you were Editor how we always flipped to your articles and commentary first because it was the only thing worth reading in that damn school paper.

    Congrats on not getting the PR gig. You’re better than that.


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