I was looking at Wikipedia today and a thought occured to me that was completely outrageous.
In between reading about the History of Israel and investigating the causes behind the New Coke fiasco, I pondered briefly about the possible positive personal benefit I would gain from updating the site. When I correct a minute detail or grammatical mistake, what do I get?
Should I log Wikipedia editing on my resume?
Resumes log positive contributions in an attempt to show future worth. Inherent in their existance is the belief that past actions and accomplishments are a good indicator of future possible achievements. Putting down your involvement in Drama Club might not be a direct indicator of success at a Marketing position, but it does show that you were capable enough to involve yourself in a (presumably) demanding extra-curricular activity.
It’s easy in college to fall prey to the resume whoring sickness. Activities for the sake of the line item. Clubs for the sake of the implied time commitment. All building for the nebulous ‘job interview’ or ‘application review’. The final test of your mettle, the moment when all your accomplishments are tallied and compared against other similarly qualified individuals.
Maybe I’ll teach myself Perl. Maybe that will impress someone one day. Or maybe I’ll write a custom programming language called the Recreational Programming Language (copyright Radical LLC). But none of those will impress law schools or law firms, I need something that will show I’d be a valuable lawyer. I know, I’ll write an article on statutory subject material and discuss in detail my invention of a computer that can read its programs off of a piece of paper.
Or maybe I’ll do something and not tell anyone. I’ll do something and gain absolutely no possible future benefit. I’ll teach myself Perl because I’m curious, not because I’ll impress anyone. I’ll go to the museum because Venetian drawings are historically interesting to me, not because I want to be known as someone who goes to museums.
I base a good portion of my life around the creation and telling of stories. This website is a good example of that. Do I tell stories about my life experiences, or do I experience life to tell stories?
What would you do if you couldn’t tell anyone? Would it be different than what you did today?