Friday, May 23, 2003
So as most of you probably gathered by the oh-so-subtle hints, I've been offered a position at Google as a UI designer, and I happily accepted on the spot. While I would otherwise be in Seattle right now, interviewing at Amazon, I'm now snug in Pittsburgh, planning out the last 10 weeks of school, and the three weeks between the end of classes and my August 25th start date.
Talking to my dad on the phone, I realized the truth of the matter when I told him matter-of-factly "I couldn't think of a job I'd rather have right now." Seriously. Anywhere. Too cool.
This will be the fifth time I've moved from the academic world to the 'real world' but this time it feels very different. When I took leaves of absence from Berkeley, I always knew that I'd go back 'some day' and finish my bachelors degree, and I did. When I started at Yahoo I (and they) knew that I had deferred my CMU admission by a year, and would likely be leaving to pursue my masters degree when that year came to pass.
This is different, though. For a lifetime I've known what the next change was, and when. I've been aware of the limited time of the status quo, like I've been driving through a winding pass, where each change in direction was mirrored by a change in circumstance. School, work, school, work.
Today, though, I can see the last turn up ahead, and I know that around that bend lies a straight ribbon of highway, as far as the eye can see. I've never gone to work somewhere without knowing that it was a short-term (less than 3 years) gig. The idea of starting someplace with the anticipation (in both forms) of staying there for the long haul is novel to me, as it is to so many people who started their careers in the tech industry, where 2 years makes you 'old guard'.
The parallel of the open road metaphor and my long drive back in August hasn't been lost on me. I know there's a word for when you map a metaphor to a real-life experience to strengthen it, but I can't remember what it is. Druids call that kind of thing 'imitative magic', but I just think of it as the journey home, for good.
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Hi, I'm Kevin Fox.
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