A Terrific Waste of Time?

I went out for drinks and dinner (dinner and drinks?) on Wednesday evening with a couple of Lesley pals and then, prompted by a conversation with said pals, came home and found my evaluation for last semester sitting amidst the heap of mail on my coffee table and decided to read it. That was a bad move, a very bad move.

For dinner, I met Sara and Jill at McCormick and Schmick’s, which is right around the corner from the Park Plaza Hotel (or whatever that hotel is called), which is where, nearly a decade ago, I had my prom (passing by the hotel on the way back to the subway station afterwards I couldn’t resist a few awful stories about the time leading up to that blessed event, including my feeling slighted about how I was supposed to have a date and then we broke up and then I didn’t have a date at all, because everyone was already going with someone).

That was a really awful fucking tangent.

Anyway, this particular bar has a ridiculous happy hour, where you can get a bevy of different meals for just two bucks a piece. The price of the drinks makes up for that, but the burger I got was wicked good.

We talked about the last couple of weeks, about the SuperBowl—Jill’s a Philly fan—and then we got to talking about the evaluations our faculty mentors give us at the end of each semester. They had both seen theirs, and both sounded like the received glowing praise, and I started to wonder if mine had gotten lost or something.

So, after a good night out with friends where I started to feel better about myself, I went home, found my evaluation, and read it.

There wasn’t anything particular bad about it. In fact, most people probably would have found it to be fairly complimentary (complementary?). However, as we all know from reading this page for so long, or from knowing me for so long, I am not most people. I read into it. It read, for me, at least, as the kind of thing you’d write about a writer who you knew was working very hard, but who you wouldn’t necessarily want to encourage to keep going.

This is exactly what I’ve been fearing about myself and my writing—that people respect me because I work hard, but they really think that my writing is shitty.

I am having a hard time coming to grips with the fact that I might be a shitty writer. Despite my constant insecure rantings, I think that deep down I’ve always secretly thought I was pretty good. What’s frightening now is that I’m starting to think I’ve never been good, that I’ll never be good, and that all of this has been a terrific waste of my time.