If there was a PhD in Bullshit, I would have gotten it by now. Bullshit is such a huge part of my life that I can’t seem to possibly live without it. I need it just to get by. I need it to keep my sanity. And most of all, I need it for my amusement.
College is a lot of bullshit. Being a full-time student is no joke. None whatsoever. Sometimes college is simply too much. Sometimes college is bullshit. Sometimes you have to bullshit your way through college. In my college career, I have written two papers on material that I never read. For both of them, reading the material was not an option. Between the intense amount of work that I had to do and my own mental illness, the time for reading was past and I had to write a paper. Now.
Both papers I read the CliffsNotes of the material, formed a thesis and wrote the paper like I usually do. I went with a thesis about a topic that the book contained and that I also knew a lot about. When I wrote about Heart of Darkness for Senior Seminar, I talked about women’s issues that were inside the text. I was a women’s studies minor and already had plenty of information to pull from. I found online version of the text and searched out quotes using key words that I then inserted into the paper for support.
I received decent grades on both papers. None of the teachers grading them had any idea that I hadn’t actually done the reading and, really, at that point, I think my teachers were all aware of what I was going through and weren’t exactly expecting me to be cranking out A+ grade papers. I passed and that was all I wanted at that time.
When at work, there’s always a tad bit of bullshitting involved. Sometimes you tell a customer that something you’re selling is delicious! When you’ve had it and you think that it sucks. Sometimes a customer asks you for a backless bra to wear to a college interview and you tell them which one is best and not that they shouldn’t be wearing anything to a college interview that requires a backless bra.
Working in costume is something else entirely. People expect you to not only know what every single tiny thing in your shop tastes like, looks like, works like, they also expect you to have a funny story about how George Washington once used it. Sometimes people at the store will say, “Let us know if you have any questions about anything in the store. If we don’t know, we can always make something up.” This is only partly a joke.
Even in social situations, sometimes you have to bullshit in order to make things less awkward, more comfortable or divert attention from yourself. And sometimes, bullshitting your way through human interactions is the only way to survive it. Needless to say, without bullshit my life would be vastly different and probably unbearable. So I will continue to bullshit when I need to get through something. Not just because I want to, but because I need to. And because I’m damn good at it.