Sorebrek's Musings and Ramblings

In search of the holy grail of an MBA (class of 2008 hopeful), this space will hopefully chronicle the search and my other quixotic pursuits.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Date Accompli

The thing that I hate about long distance relationships is how much it opens up the field to games. There's so much whining, pining and neediness. You ask her out and you hear nothing from her for days. Your feelings of insecurity manifest in fearsome forms. Has she dumped you for the I-banker hunk? You gripe about it to friends who cannot bear to hear one more word from you on the topic. On impulse you jump on a plane to go talk to her, hoping to persuade her and she treats you like you were just another contestant on the Bachelorette show. And just when you're ready to move on, ready to settle into a loser Valentine's day, she writes back. Yes Wharton finally gets back - and it is not a DWI!

So I get busy and schedule an interview with a local alum in the city - one that meets my three criteria. Last Monday I come out of the interview thinking I aced it. I had the answers pat down; hell, this is my third interview - I could do these while getting a lap-dance. I was a machine, an automaton - Why MBA, Why W etc. flew out like I was Socrates on weed. Why, I could even engage in a discourse on the architectural influences on Huntsman hall like it were St. Peter's Basilica. I threw in a good measure of gaiety, there were the appropriate pauses. "You know that is an interesting question. I can think of several instances, but I think I'm gonna go with the one that relates most to the Wharton Learning Team experience." I was on a roll. For all of 15 minutes. Then I reran the whole thing in my head. How stupid could I be. There was zero connection with the interviewer, a sweet school marm type. On retrospect I think I should've taken more time talking her into taking off her glasses and the chop-sticks (or pencil is it?) she had in her well-coiffed bun. But alas, I am so charmless, it was just wishful thinking. To give you an idea of the tone of the interview, here's an excerpt plucked from towards the end of the interview:

Sorebrek: What is it that you specifically took away from the Wharton experience that is helping you in your day-to-day job as a rocket scientist?
Interviewer: (pause) NOTHING! (pause, stare, the next-question-please look)
(Sorebrek now gasping for air like an asthmatic fish.)
Interviewer: Well, if you ask me to single out a case-study session that I used in my job today, I can't do it.
(She must have picked up on the body language or something - I was groping around the table for my eye-balls that had popped out of their sockets on her first response.)

The whole event reinforced my apprehensions about Wharton. I had gone up to Philly recently. There is an eldritch electricity in the air; unhealthy tension is rife. Kids running around like headless chicken; six jobs under the belt, yet a hungry piranha. This is not a case of sour grapes, I have said it before offline to several of you. My Wharton ding is fait accompli - I am not holding my breath on W. You see, being a Yeti it is hard enough for you to get into any top-10 even with a 780, Ivy 4.0, bird-flu cure and spare-time walking on water. A luke-warm interview is the kiss of death.

On to less(?) dismal tidings. For you vicarious readers, I did have a real date, in fact one last night. I should've known when she suggested Labyrinth. Turned out to be Goth heaven. I was sitting there nursing my watered down Martini and wishing that the eerie dude in the leather pants and matching lipstick would stop his freaky dance moves and slither back behind the Starbucks counter or wherever it is he came out from behind. And to top it, I was getting hit on like Harry Whittington by Cheney's bird-shot - wrong target guys. I feigned epilepsy and started foaming at my mouth which finally convinced my date that it was time to leave. On the way back, I suggested that the next time we go to the Addam's Family Farm. She gave me the whole Medusa-stare thing, quietly switched on the car's map light, opened her bag, pulled out a stick of lipstick that looked like a round of buckshot, listlessly applied it to her lips and then with a surprising agility, parted her legs in the cool air of the car and drew a thick red line on my white seat - thigh to thigh. Maybe it was Maybelline, maybe it was the Marybelle Line, but for the second time in a week I went asthmatic fish.

I wish this whole debacle would just end. I am waking up in the middle of the night with cold sweats having dreamt that I was cast into the waitlist purgatory. Oh please dingeuthanize me. I have even started suckling on the dark one's teats: yes, I have started reading the BusinessWeek forums! Oh the humanity!

Saturday, February 04, 2006


Below the thunders of the upper deep,
Far far beneath in the abysmal sea,
His ancient, dreamless, uninvaded sleep
The Kraken sleepeth
Until the latter fire shall heat the deep;
Then once by men and angels to be seen,
In roaring he shall rise and on the surface die. (a ding metaphor?)
The Kraken, Lord Alfred Tennyson

With the application festivities winding down, I have been able to focus on my life's true calling - vegetating and drinking. For instance, take the last weekend. I work from home on Fridays - mostly on my googling skills. By Saturday I feel I would grow roots into my arm-chair. I plan a radical overhaul of my schedule. I walk across the room and settle on the couch for the rest of the weekend! I am screening calls. Right now I hate all my friends for no apparent reason - in fact I realize that I hate all of humanity. So I decide to go see the whales in Monterey. I always had this picture of me, the whales, the gulls and the surf. But I end up with a boatful of noisy kids. I want to feed them to the orcas.

In a sea of yellow veldt grass I walk, wobbly, fourteen and naked. Solemn oboists in deathly black stare right through me. I wander into woodwind players, all long-lost friends. In the tall swaying grass I see the first violins. I walk disoriented among string players - violists their faces set in concentration and bassists their flaxen hair flying - all oblivious of me. All except a wild-eyed cellist who will never smile. I strain to listen. My little heart races and panics. I sense every note, I feel the ominous minor key, but the music, the music I cannot hear. All that Stradivari and not a whisper. Suddenly in a series of pained arpeggios, I hear the master sigh in the finale of the 40th. Happy birthday Wolfgang!

I woke up with a start to see a pair of green eyes glaring at me. Percy (Persephone) hates visitors, but no more than I hate cats. In a mist of alcohol breath, she and I stared at each other for what seemed like an eternity. Then Her Feline Grace ambled over to Abigail, nestled in the crook of her arm, closed her eyes and shut me out. I love cats.

Groggy, I woke up to unfamiliar surroundings. I was lying on the floor in Abby's living room. Crumpled on their couch, she and her boyfriend looked like entangled contortionists who were too tired to free themselves from an awkward stunt. It was still dark outside, there was a ouija board on the floor, burnt incense in the air and an open window. More bodies were strewn around.

How exactly I got there still remains a mystery. There is a vague memory of a drinking game, but beyond that everything is a haze. Yes, I am ready for school. All I need is an admit.