Julia and Adam are in class, where their professor is explaining how character detail and style are important in conveying their message. He mentions that Julia has tried a stream-of-consciousness technique. If she writes like she talks, I can't imagine how anyone could read it with all the weird pauses and "God!" every few words. Anyway, the professor asks if she was trying to guide the reader. She starts to answer, but Adam interrupts her to say that Ulysses was all stream-of-consciousness and no one can understand it. While I am not a fan of James Joyce overall, people far smarter than Adam have devoted entire scholarly careers to understanding that particular work. Books have been written about it. Obviously, many people feel that there is something to understand there, and that the form is as important as the content. But this is neither the time nor the place for a discussion of literary theory. I meant in this recap, not in their writing class. Their writing class is actually exactly the time and place for that discussion. The professor disagrees with Adam, and Adam argues that Ulysses is all about passion, which makes me think he has only actually read that famous last line. The professor remarks that if all Adam got from the novel was "passion," he hasn't really understood it. Adam retorts that he thought writing was an art and art wasn't supposed to follow any rules, so how can the professor tell him what the rules are? Whatever, tortured artist. I know no one wants me to go into a discussion of my views on literary criticism, but suffice to say that I think it helps to know what the rules are, and understand why the rules were created, before you go about breaking them.
Bailey is meeting with a career counselor, and tells her he is interested in venture capitalism, consulting and marketing. Don't you have to have money to become a venture capitalist? The counselor stops him because she needs to know more about his background before they go any further. She asks what his degree is in. Bailey tells her that he dropped out in his sophomore year of college. But, he points out that he ran his family's restaurant for two years and totally turned the place around. The counselor tells him that the first thing an employer will want to know about is his degree, and that without one he won't get in the front door. That is such a load of crap! I'm sorry, but it is. He lives in San Francisco. He could call himself a food industry consultant, and walk in the door of any number of dot-coms, and have a job in an hour. Those companies do not care about your degree or if you have one, and would be thrilled to have someone with actual business savvy. I'm not saying college isn't useful. I'm just saying that the job market is such right now (especially in San Francisco) that a degree is not as important as work experience.