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Since the dawn of dot-com career sites, a job search entails little more than an endless browse—the online equivalent of wandering past every shelf in a bookstore, head cocked to one side, scanning the bindings. Looking for something, but the author’s name hangs just past the tip of the tongue. Unemployment is at 9.1 percent; in a surprising twist, I’m dying to be a part of The Other 90.9.

The slow burn of online job searching opens the door to a certain degree of poetic license, if only to assuage the litany of nouns that couldn’t possibly apply to sad, sweatpanted, page-refreshing you: analyst, executive, coordinator. The last thing I coordinated was the programming on my DVR (when you wake up after eleven you miss all the morning Frasier reruns). And so, the unemployed multitudes arm themselves with vocabulary and a generous belief in their abilities and wonder aloud into the wee hours whether “head photocopy intern” might be better expressed as “director of photography.” (My favorite such semantic upgrade is my boyfriend’s translation of “busboy” as “waiter’s assistant.”)
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