But, I AM desperate!
Several people have made comments on the CV posts to the effect of "Don't do this because it sounds too desperate."
This is something I fundamentally don't understand about human psychology. But it's true. It's true for dating, so why shouldn't it be true for jobs?
I understand that you don't want someone to settle for a job they didn't really want, just to get out of their current miserable situation, and then be a flight risk when they come to their senses. I get that.
But, um, I really hate being a postdoc??!! And I'm not really sure that's any secret for most people at the stage of applying for faculty positions.
But there are a few who don't seem to mind. I ran into a friend today whose advisor has convinced her to wait yet another year to apply for faculty positions.
She's just relieved not to be out on the street, living in a cardboard box. She talks about it like he's going to "let" her stay in his lab. Lucky her!
But I can't help feeling like these guys don't really have our happiness and satisfaction in mind when they say they can pay us a pittance if we would just be patient and wait. And wait. And wait.
Especially when one of the slowest parts of the reaction is the delay when they make us wait days, sometimes weeks or months, to even have a meeting where we get to beg them for any little crumb of feedback.
Does that seem fair to you?
To me, this is a lot like having children. Should my taxes or tuition go to support someone who has 6 children, no job, and doesn't understand or want to learn how to use birth control? I don't really think so.
Similarly, should I have to wait for my advisor to make the rounds just because he can't make time for all his obligations? Do the accumulated days of waiting actually tack on an extra year, or even two, for each postdoc who desperately wants to leave? And is that really balanced out by the quality of the feedback I eventually get?
I'm thinking it would depress me too much to add up how much time it has actually been, if I counted up a total. I once added up my bus rides from high school and it came to something like more than a solid month of my life.
And is it any wonder after all this waiting if I sound a little desperate? I just don't really think it's fair to say that a little ambition is a bad thing.