I got fleas on the best Spring Break trip I took in college.
In my defense, they might have been “Liger fleas.”
Long before Napoleon Dynamite let the cat out of the bag about ligers (feline joke in a sentence about jungle cats? That is rich!), a small homemade zoo outside of Panama City, Florida had a couple of them.
How did they acquire a deadly tiger-lion love child? I’m not sure. I was too busy getting fleas at that ramshackle zoo that was devoid of all the romantic comedy hijinks Matt Damon promised in his movie We Bought A Zoo.
My hope was that much like the origin of Spiderman, I would gain some sort of superhuman powers from the bite of the Liger Fleas. Thus far, that has not been the case. But I did learn an important lesson – it’s easy to have a fun Spring Break when you’re in college.
Even getting bitten by bugs, sleeping on the floor of a sad motel room next to 14 of your friends, and eating ketchup packets for dinner when you run out of money midweek is kind of fun. It’s Spring Break! Whooo!
And then you become an adult.
You graduate college. Or you decide not to go to college and you enter the workforce. Suddenly you find yourself out in the “real world.” Gone are the sunny shores of Cancun. Instead of the beach, you end up staring at the walls of a cubicle, which always come in one of three colors: gray, off gray and hopelessness.
I know all about that. I had 8 different jobs in 8 different cubicles before I figured out how to close the gap between my day job and my dream job. I wrote a book about it called Quitter to help other people discover their passions and then pursue them. And part of the process to finding your dream job is learning how to fall in like with a job you don’t love. Impatience kills more dreams than failure, and if you’re going to be at a day job for a little while, as you build the path to your dream job, you might as well not be miserable 40 hours a week.
What better way to beat back misery at work than to navigate your way through Spring Break like a champ? After writing about ways to “Survive church as a single adult,” I thought it might be fun to write about how to “Survive spring when you don’t get one.”
Where do you get started? What do you need to do? Will Snooki be involved in any manner? So many questions. To answer those, I’ve broken down a few tips for you into three different categories. Today, I’ll share the first category, and tomorrow I’ll post the other two. (A two-parter on SCL? Exciting!)
Find the category that best fits you, read the tips, and then side hug me next time we meet as a sign of your gratefulness for the wisdom I am about to impart.
Here’s how to survive Spring Break if you:
Work at your first “real job.”
You’re out of college or high school and find yourself working your very first real job. Please keep the following in mind during Spring Break:
1. Do not request Spring Break off.
Nothing says “I don’t really care about this job,” like telling your boss, “I’m going to need to take Spring Break off. There’s a Jell-O fight I really want to attend with my friends who are still in college.”
2. Stay off of social media during Spring Break.
Speaking of your friends still in college, ignore them during Spring Break. Seriously, they are temporarily dead to you during that week. Shut down Facebook. Log off Twitter. Ignore their emails and texts. The last thing you want to read while you sit in a meeting is a status update from a friend that says, “Amazing time in Daytona! They’re dropping free money from a helicopter and everyone here is beautiful!”
3. Do not accidentally show up at places you’re friends are going for Spring Break.
“What? You guys are in Negril, Jamaica too this week? What are the chances! What a small world it is.” Stop. Don’t do it. If you’re not careful, you’ll become that older guy at the nightclub wearing Axe body spray dancing by yourself trying to meet college freshman. You think I’m kidding, but that reality will sneak up on you like Grendel’s mother in Beowulf. (Axe body spray and a reference to an 8th century Anglo-Saxon poem in the same paragraph? Unbelievable!)
4. Do not ask people at work what they’re doing for Spring Break this year.
Know what they’re doing? Working. And if you go to a staff meeting and yell out, “Whose ready for Spring Break? Swag!!” you will be met with a blank wall of stares that say, “We’re sending this kid back to the mailroom as fast as possible.”
Stayed tuned for part 2 tomorrow: How to survive spring break if you live at home with your parents and how to survive spring break if you work in a cubicle.
Where did you go on the best Spring Break you ever had?