The Perks of Having No Work Friends

Recently, I’ve taken a job that requires me to stay in hotels around the state throughout the week. However, after having quite a few friends at my previous job, I’ve got to deal with the issue of having no friends at work.  This week, I worked on historical documentation with a woman who literally grunts in response to what I say.  But then, as I sat there, i started to appreciate the solitude, and so I made a list of all the advantages of having no friends,

1. Arts and Crafts

Any alcoholic writer can tell you that nothing inspires creativity like solitude. So, after grocery shopping and binge-eating on the powdered cheese in the Macaroni and Cheese box, I was left with a lot of dry, flavorless, noodles.

Who the fuck would eat noodles without sauce?

So when life and impatient eating gives you noodles, you make art.  I didn’t have any glue or paper, so I used peanut butter and hotel stationary. After five minutes of failing, I decided to cook the mac and cheese with peanut butter as sauce.

And two nights later, I cooked something else in the hotel room. In the toliet. It was shit.

 If I had friends, they probably would have stopped me. Thus, the advantage of having no friends is very apparent.

2. Videos a Blaring

You can watch anything that you want, without anyone judging your netflix or internet video preferences. Three cats fitting into a shoe box? Youtube it on! Twin peaks? Who else will solve Laura Palmer’s murder?   German midget shemale porn?

Blare it Loud and PROUD, you sick fuck!

I myself enjoy the comedic stylings of Jake and Amir. If you haven’t seen it….

WATCH IT

I actually just leave the TV on HBO while I’m away on full volume, with the do not disturb sign on the door. There’s a good chance random strangers think I getting laid now (or shot or beheaded).

3. The Classic ‘Drink and Sob’

The archaeologists favorite; drinking.  But this activity can only be done if you are alone. You take a bottle of your favorite alcohol and think of everything in the world that you hate while chugging it as fast as you can.

Don’t stop until your computer watches you do German Midget Shemale Porn

At the end of the night, if you don’t end up in your bathtub, asking your ex why they hated your eyebrows over a shotty mobile connection? You did it wrong.

I tried so hard to pluck it to your exact specifications.

4. Self-Reflection on Deep and Beautiful Level

There are some things that you shouldn’t do in public, and that’s find your self…

Not like that, you!

I mean of course, talking to yourself.  Now, I will occasionally partake in this in public, but completely by accident.  For example, at work the other day, I was telling a dear co worker about my research. After five minutes of talking she turned and told me she stopped paying attention several minutes ago.  This is when I recognized my super power: I can say anything I want at work without anyone hearing me. So I decided to start saying my thoughts out loud to better interpret and work through them.

“Giant Cookie-hooker!”

The other day, I talked my way through the moral dilemma of euthanasia of endangered animals (to spare them the loneliness of being one of the last of their species). By the time I reached my solution,

“KILL THEM ALL”

-the archaeology lab was completely empty. The degree to which people didn’t notice me was so strong that they forgot to invite me to join them for lunch.  So, you see, having no friends is really quite a benefit.

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Archaeologist Anxiety

I have pretty bad anxiety, like to the ‘needs therapy’ and ‘possibly medication’ extent, so that can be a bit of a problem.  This means that I literally cannot enjoy anything new without imagining some horrible new fear; in this case, a new job as a field technician, even though I’ve done it before with another organization.  But this is new, so it’s really quite scary.

There’s the standard archaeologist fears:

What if I find a projectile point and drop it into a pile of dirt filled with ticks and black widow spiders?(Already happened, waiting for the inevitable Lyme’s disease)

What if I mistake sandstone for prehistoric pottery (it actually looks really similar to the untrained eye)?

What if the motels we stay at have dead bodies and cockroaches under the bed? (it’s really possible)

What if I accidentally decapitate my dig partner with a shovel? (At over a meter in the ground, your arm gets super weak.)  And being struck by lighting?( it’s totally possible).

Then there’s the standard work fears:

What if everyone hates me? (pretty standard)

What if I’m horrible and get fired? (really standard)

What if people discover I like to knit and demand I make them hats, then realize I’m really bad at it and can’t afford the yarn without charging them? (Everyone’s been there)

But then there’s these REALLY specific fears that only make sense to me (or to you. I don’t know your life).

What if my married roommate at the motel I am staying in has sex with someone while I am still in the room? (I feel like one in two people have had this experience; hence the divorce rate).

Standard Falling Off of a Cliff? (happened in Achill Island in Ireland, 200 ft drop, caught myself at the last minute).

How about the very high risk of choking on melted cheese? (It happened when I ate potato skins at this restaurant in Mackinac island, and now I fear my favorite food).

What if I meet a really over competitive douche bag who tries to get ahead by ruining my relationship with our supervisor by sabotage? (That seriously happened in graduate school; there was some weird stuff going on in that staff office).

When it comes right down to it, my fears from the most specific and odd to the most standard are currently out of my control.  I can do the best I can, but I know I will screw something up; it’s inevitable at any new job. There is no way to not screw up at a new place, even if you’ve done the same job somewhere else. No amount of experience or preparation can stop that first mistake, and disappointment.

But I’m still going to have a panic attack.