Lawrentian Gothic “Student for Hire”

After successfully trekking to the local Target, you realize that you are flat out broke. You desperately want to stock your room with mac and cheese, onesies and a slew of board games. You know, the college essentials. You shudder to remember breaking into a cold sweat and the clerk releasing a pack of dogs on you upon realizing you couldn’t afford your new minion backpack. After that embarrassing encounter, you decide that it can never happen again. That’s when you begin to search for an on-campus job at Lawrence University.

Your first thought is to check the school’s work website, LUworks. After all, listings for student jobs should be there, right? You log into your account and find yourself faced with only one option. Bon Appétit is the only listing. It’s been a few weeks since school started. While there may have been jobs available earlier, it was also a mad dash to apply, resulting in horrible swarms around the mail room, info desk and circulation desk. You had felt at peace then, but your current financial woes have driven you to partake in the insanity of the job search. Bon Appétit is the only option. You feel wary of the offer, but submit your resume anyways. If it’s the only option, you might as well take it. After all, you’ve learned that there is no possible way to escape College Avenue. Unless someone is hiring off campus, you’re stuck with LU-works’ limited college offerings. Unfortunate.

You finish your study session in Colman Hall. You look at your phone and realize your interview is going to happen soon. You head up the stairs from the main basement, and head past the RLA desk. It’s there that you realize that there are dozens of blank Bon Appétit applications waiting for you. “Apply today!” They say. “You won’t regret it!” They say. “Go to your interview!” They say. A pit forms in your stomach as you are overcome with dread. Should you go to your interview?

Your mind flits to the mac and cheese your heart desires, and you decide to keep moving. The sky becomes darker as you approach Warch. Tornado sirens start to blare. Is it a Saturday? You shake it off and go to your interview location. You knock on the door and it creaks open. No one is there, but you step inside anyway. The door closes on its own. A single light illuminates a table in the center of the room. On the table is a sticky note that reads: “help.”

On your way out, someone opens the door for you in a very Midwestern fashion. They seemed to know you were coming and are grinning madly at you. “Go to Briggs third floor,” they croon at you. “The Psychology Department is looking to hire.” How did they know exactly what you wanted? Despite their unsettling omniscience, you decide to go to Briggs anyway.

On the third floor, there is one sign on the door of a room labeled “the batcave.” On the sign is written: “jobs.” You run your id card over the scanner and you hear a click. You enter the room and are enveloped by its darkness.

The next thing you know, you are outside of the room again. You feel light headed and you cannot recall what the job was or what you did. Was there even an interview? You look down in your hand and find $7.25. You earned that. Good job.