the habit of rejection

I’ve gotten out of it, rather surprisingly, and thus this morning’s email from Big Grant Awarding Body, the polite decline and the boilerplate on how competitive it was, rather has caught me out.  And yet, the rather familiar ache in the pit of my stomach, the sense of “don’t those fuckers know I’m bigger, better, faster, more,” the rage and the grief all come rolling in.  Muted, of course, and yet not, which is confusing.  As this one isn’t a deal-breaker, a be-all and end-all scenario – there’s a mini-round on that in October, and the real deal in 2 years.  But I’m rocked slightly back on my heels, wondering why people don’t see – again, a familiar litany of emotions, frustrations, a long list of grievances.  I received a catalogue for a tiny, inconsequential press at home the other day.  The truly amusing part, and the reason it comes to my home address rather than the office, is that I applied for a job from this minnow school yonks ago.  Not only did they reject me (in 20-20 hindsight from a lofty good job, I can with full magnanimity say “fuck you, but good call – we would have hated each other”), but they added me to their fricking mailing list.  Minnows gotta grow somehow, I suppose, but the lack of taste is impressive.  Anyways, rejection with a twist, knowing it’s not the end of the world, having done this shit enough to know that this-too-shall-pass, and of course, always the timing, knowing I have too much to do in the short and medium term to let this stop me from getting done the work, use the muted grief to fuel rather than excuse, evade, avoid, (drink). It fades even as I get distracted while writing this.  I wanted to check TPT last night to figure out what time I was up and out of the house to the BL from April-September, 2004, the 6 months in which I wrote the vast majority of my diss.  But in checking it today, it’s not clear (despite my memory of such) that I posted before leaving the house to sit on the 9/10 bus crawling along Oxford Street,  reading literary theory and the occasional trashy novel, and sometimes Proust.    Whatevs.  Coffee, shower, read, write.