So which is it: job or calling? You can answer the question directly, or allow time to answer it for you. Either way, I think you’d be happier if you stopped thinking of what the world had to offer you, and started thinking a bit more about what you had to offer the world. Real excitement isn’t just in whatever you happen to be doing, but in what you bring to it.
Client begins first meeting by making a big show of telling you that you are the expert. You are in charge, he says: he will defer to you in all things, because you understand the web and he does not. (Trust your uncle Jeffrey: this man will micromanage every hair on the project’s head.)
If you want to persuade people to act more the way you think they should act, you’ve got to be more genuinely interested in how they actually act, and why they act that way. If you don’t want to persuade, then honestly, don’t expect the world to be other than what it is, and settle for permanent disappointment and isolation as your lot in life.
Highly productive people do not have more time, but they may have more energy, more method and better feedback on their progress.
Graduate school is not education. It is socialization. It is about learning to behave, about mastering a rhetorical and discursive etiquette as mind-blowingly arcane as table manners at a state dinner in 19th Century Western Europe.
Graduate school is cotillion for eggheads.
The trick, then, is to get a job based on work you haven’t done, and stick around until the details of what you did are forgotten. That’s when the true rewards of academia set in.
To the world of rare books Mr. Friedlaender brought a rare commodity: a sense of fun.