Buckling Down

A Repost of Continued Studies

Continued Studies

     To stay on course, I continued to taper off from partying and dedicated my time to studying. To look the part, I began wearing preppy/collegiate fashions, and totted drafting supplies, and slung a slide rule from my belt. With my dark rimmed glasses, I carried myself like a focused intellectual. Although not intentional, I was beginning to look like an IBM nerd.
     One day while I was studying upstairs in my bedroom, a party was going on down in the basement. My brother Don invited me to join. After I turned him down he said, “No good-skie.” In other words, he realized how serious I was, and wanted me to take a break from my studies. Nevertheless, I remained firm. Even though I continued to hang out on a few occasions, I continued to crack the books; because the homework assignments demanded it in order to get a decent grade. I realized I had to remain committed and focused, and not allow myself to be side tracked by excessive addiction to drinking and partying.
     This reformed lifestyle stirred up the 3Cs: confusion, concern and contempt, amongst my runnin’ partners. Like young kids, they’d get frustrated when I didn’t come out to play. In gist, I had snapped out of the mode of habitual partying, and focused on pursuing a career in technology. In contrast, however, my party timing was not completely over yet.


A typical pool of keypunch operators

     My tenacity began to show; because through the efforts of an employment agency, IBM recruiters had contacted me and offered me a position as a customer engineer in early 1965. The job consisted of classroom and hands-on training for preparation as an entry-level keypunch repairman. Their objective was to assign me to the keypunch pool at the 30th Street Pennsylvania Railroad station.

A Bad Decision

     I was intent on accepting the offer until Karen assertively objected to it. I surmise she didn’t want me working in a room full of female keypunch operators. I guess I called myself trying to please my spouse; because I reluctantly turned down the job.
     Thinking back on my decision, I regret rejecting the offer because I could have joined the company earlier, and worked toward higher career advancement. Moreover, I could have had the chance to be in a room full of leggy women; and as a railroad buff, a chance to work in a train station. What was I thinking? After all, I was the bread winner, not her.

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17 comments on “Buckling Down

  1. Sonny, you are truly a man of integrity and focus. How many guys would have broke when the parties started? Many.

    You did the right thing listening to your wife, that’s what good men do. You can always get more money, but a good wife is hard to find. Despite the outcome of your marriage, you did the right thing.

    • Thanks for the comment. The focus comes from becoming easily addicted to doing things. Concerning my ex, she’ll be glad to read your comment. That’s if she’ll read it of course.

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