Wednesday, August 30, 2006


Disclaimer: The picture has nothing to do with the text below. Except the “getting shit faced” part maybe. My regular partners in crime.

It’s funny how moods can do a 180 – one minute to another. And I’m not talking drastic things like getting your house bombed or anything like that. No it’s when I have to study for an exam. The weeks before I’m totally stressed out, I’m mad at people who ask if I want to meet up for a cup of coffee because it takes time away from my studying. My brain is so speeded and as I’m reading, my brain is making plans for what I will do when the test is over. It’s hard to concentrate when your brain is not cooperating. My apartment is never as clean as it is before an exam. This time I even sewed all the buttons in, that had come loose and arranged my bills by month. A friend called and asked if I felt a sudden urge to see how MacGyver reruns ends as well. How did he know?!

I take the test and when I walk out of there I’m on such endorphin-high, I bounce when I walk. All the troubles of the world are gone and the things I have been planning for the last couple of weeks seam so distance. It’s such a strange happy feeling. Like I’m floating.

When the “every day” routine sets in, the high is gone and so is the planning to some extent. I don’t’ wish to be under the study-pressure often. Actually never. But the way the brain is so active and plan fun things ahead is an amazing state. And I’m a planner, so it’s not that I don’t normally plan, but during study-time my creativity seam to be out of control! Ofcourse I wish some of that energy would be focused on the upcoming exam, but you can’t get everything now can you.

When I interviewed for my present job, one of the older and very experienced managers said to me “it’s funny with education: if you don’t have it you think it’s everything. When you have it you realize you don’t know any more than you did before”. It was such a relief for me to hear! I have worked my but off for so many years to compensate for my lack of education, and now when I soon have my executive MBA, I realize that I learned everything by working anyway. But it looks good on paper with an education. Good on paper?! When dates “look good on paper” it usually means they are boooriiiing.

Every now and then I’m asking myself if it is/was worth it to get this paper saying that I have an education. The price I’ve paid is having virtually no time left over after working, studying and sleeping. And getting shit faced. I’m hoping it’s my insurance to never have a boring job!


Blogger ~Deb said...

Well first of all, I always love when you post picture! :)

Second of all, I'm a high school drop out. Never graduated. I finished tenth grade.

I have had jobs in accounting for IBM, Minolta Corp, Telecommunications in their technical departments making more money than my friends who finished up their college degrees.

Now, I think it's admirable that anyone finished college! It's great, and it gives you some life experiences as well as a wonderful education--no doubt. But I do feel that there are people out there that are intelligent...without the degree.

Loved thos post! And-----having all those degrees does NOT make one look "boooorrrriiing"---if anything, it makes me wanna take them out for a drink and pick their brain a bit.

So when we going out?

9:55 AM  
Blogger Åsa said...

Deb! I totally agree with you: it’s admirable to finish college – or even high school. But most of all I think what I missed out on is the student life. You know when you are basically an adult, but you don’t have all the responsibilities as an adult. You get to hang with people your own age, research interesting stuff, talk to people with great knowledge etc. All w/o having to worry too much about bills and other obligations. Or maybe I just have a skewed picture of higher education?

Today I would be fully satisfied with a professor and a bottle of red! On a lot of levels...

I don’t think education make you intelligent. Either you are or you’re not. Education will give you a greater base of knowledge faster than if you have to experience it though I guess. And it’s probably safer to be operated on by an educated surgeon than one who is just working by the trail and error principle!

You’ve been working for some big companies Deb! Very cool! And thank G’d that salary is not perfectly correlated to schooling. I’ve read some of your work related posts and it’s apparent that you are a valuable employee.

I WILL make it to the US soon and then we’ll go bar hopping for sure! As soon as they let me bring my lotion, perfume and toothpaste in the carry-on-bag again…

4:58 AM  
Blogger Balloon Pirate said...

There's a big difference between education and a diploma. In my opinion, the only place where that piece of paper ultimately makes a difference is in corporate Human Resources offices.

Those pieces of papers are demarcators. They're corporate shorthand. HR people have to guess whether or not a person can do a job. Different pieces of papers open different doors.

Sometimes, though, people look for the paper exclusive of everything else the person has to offer. And that's too bad. Because that person who didn't get hired because of the lack of a piece of paper may go somewhere else and kick ass.

I'm sure I'm not telling you anything you don't already know. I just like commenting on your blog.

And I like the picture. Cute outfit.


12:40 PM  
Blogger Åsa said...

Balloon Pirate: you are preaching to the choir (or is it singing?...) indeed! And I like it. A nice little English lesson again (had to look up “demarcations”). That’s also why I usually go by a headhunting firm. They interview me and look at my work history instead of just checking my diplomas. Easier for a headhunter to promote me than what it is to get a job by just sending your resume – answering a job-ad - at the same time thousands of other competent people do.

Have a nice weekend!

4:51 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Asa, I'm so glad you stopped by my blog! I'm certainly enjoying yours.

I didn't get my bachelor's degree until I was 48 years old, and I wish I would have done it years before. I've been pretty successful, given that all I had was a two-year fine art degree, but I hit a ceiling. And, I kept watching people who weren't as smart as me get jobs I couldn't get because they had a degree, and I didn't.

But education is more than the piece of paper. I think what you learn is something more intangible than the words on the pages you read or the tests you took. It's the process of education that teaches us how to think broadly, how to present, how to capture broad concepts and communicate them. These are hard skills to learn when you're in the midst of the day-to-day muck of doing a job.

7:27 AM  
Blogger mal said...

I think an education provides a broad context in which to apply lifes lessons.

Sadly, many "well educated" people never learn the lesson you so eloquently describe. I personally had to learn it the hard way. It has served me well on many occasions and helps me in trying to be "intellectually honest".

It is hard enough with out being blinded by our own educational arrogance

Great post *S*

6:59 PM  
Blogger mal said...

BTW, I agree with BP,,that is a cute outfit *S*

7:00 PM  
Blogger Åsa said...

Elizabeth: You have a very good point! And other people have told me the same thing that you learn a way of working with information rather than just learning the actual things you took a test on. That’s an important aspect! Not to forget the self-confident a degree probably gives.

On a side note: just as we know that some people are awesome at job interviews and then suck at the actual job, a person who is good at presenting things, isn’t necessarily good at performing the actual task.

11:45 PM  
Blogger Åsa said...

Mal: I’ve met plenty of people with educational arrogance. I love how you put words on that! And with so many things in life, if we are never exposed to and get to know people that are very different from ourselves: how can we understand them? I think a lot of the well educated crowd of top executives only has very similar people around them. They don’t know that something different can be just as good – only different.

11:46 PM  
Blogger Åsa said...

Oh and Mal and Balloon Pirate! Glad you like my dress! I wear such strict and conservative clothes at work, so on my time off I sometimes adventure out in the land of colours and cleavage…

11:48 PM  
Blogger Tony Scornavacca, Jr. said...

Did you know that you have pop-ups on your blog?

11:40 AM  
Blogger Åsa said...

Tony: I have noticed the pop-ups, but I don't know how to get rid of them!

12:03 AM  
Blogger Tony Scornavacca, Jr. said...

I wish I could suggest something to deal with them. usually has good info on all topics related to computers.

5:57 AM  

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