Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Memory Day: Ten Years Ago Today

October 10, 2002 was the first death knell for my adolescence-prolonging grad school career. It was on this date that I sent an email to the company that I had interned at for three summers to see about a full-time position:

(This is not a date I celebrate regularly with paid time off and a parade -- I just happened to be doing a search through every email I've ever written last night, and it turned out that this was the only email sent on the particular day).

My reasons for switching from music to computers were outlined in this post, but the gist of the matter was that I was, and still am, a lazy introvert (albeit an extremely efficient one), and the amount of non-composing-related work I would have to do throughout a composing career to sell myself was not very appetizing. I didn't want to have to write music for rent money or subscribe to the obituaries to find backwater colleges where the tenured composer had just croaked in hopes of fighting twenty other composers for a job. I especially didn't want to have to smile and nod through endless concerts of atonal contemporary music where everyone in the audience secretly knows that mainstream listeners will never take any of it seriously.

Once I'd gotten the offer from FGM (software developer level 2 of 6, at $58k), I put my Masters coursework on autopilot and spent the remaining months in Tallahassee working on my thesis, playing Scrabble with Mike and Kathy, and buying Booty. With ten years of perspective, it was definitely the correct choice!

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