Perhaps the self-esteem movement wasn’t all for naught—and perhaps we don’t all need to go through the five stages of post-collegiate grief—because apparently all those compliment collages and gold star stickers actually did prepare my generation for something: reality television!
My favorite part of this clip from E! News on a popular class on how to become a reality star is the list of tips to impress casting directors (highlighted across the screen in bubble letters), one of which is “Be your biggest fan by starting sentences with ‘I’”. This is fantastic. I know the golden rule of writing a cover letter when applying for a “real” job is to avoid beginning too many sentences with the word “I.” (“I’m interested in this position because...”) No, must demonstrate your humility and keen interest in Corporate Corporation X, and somehow at the same time focus on what you can do for them, not what they can do for you.
I always thought that was BS… and it was so hard to fandangle value from my non-experience while visions of health insurance (!) salary (!) and paid time off (!) were dancing in my head. So forget the “real world.” Who needs it when you can play a real person on TV?!
The other tips, for those of you who can’t access YouTube at work (more reason to ditch this “real world” that oppresses us), are “Speak slowly” (always a good one), “Work it all the time,” “Ride the wave of celebrity” and “Carry a makeup kit with you—because you want to shine, but you don’t want to shine.” (Oh boy.)
I feel like a good chunk of my generation has been groomed for this job since birth… but I guess a class would only further secure a destiny in reality television humiliation, er, stardom, I mean…