My apologies to my dear readers, that I have not written a post in the past two weeks. I've been looking for a job. I haven't done that in quite some time. It is exhausting. I've been applying for anything that pays $12/hr or more, everything from light industrial/warehouse, to corporate copywriting. Ten to fifteen applications a day, online. A few highlights:
The first response came from an ad I responded to, for office work. It was an innocuous ad, nothing special. The response came by email, asking if I wanted to be Eugene's personal assistant. A representative for Baume de Mercier watches, he was in Switzerland temporarily, and needed someone to handle money transfers from clients. All I would have to do is receive the transfers in my account, and then transfer the money to another account. That's it. $2000/month, plus 10% of every transfer. Maybe 3-4 hours a day, he said. I just needed to send him all the relevant information. I looked up Baume de Mercier watches online. I emailed him back, innocent like, saying it sounded like a great deal - but if I can buy a Baume de Mercier watch online with a credit card or paypal transfer, why does money need to be transferred through my account? I didn't ask what he was really trafficking in. He did not respond.
The second response came from an ad about entry-level management. I'm not sure why I applied to that one, except they talked about integrity, and it being a family friendly environment. The gal who called was Asian, with a thick accent. We set up an appointment - I figured at the time, I haven't been to an interview in a while, it would be good practice - and she told me to look sharp. Then she told me where the meeting would take place, in an office building on the second floor across the street from the UofM campus, and then I knew it was a shitty call center job with a ridiculously high turnover rate because poor college kids couldn't stand it. I skipped that one.
The next one involved the selling of insurance. I have no interest in selling insurance, but I went to that interview because their niche market is unions, credit unions and associations, and the meeting was in Eden Prairie, one of the ritzier suburbs of Minneapolis, so I figured it was legit. I was also under the impression it would involve more the reviewing of documents, than selling insurance. And I figured, even if there's some selling, at least I'll be talking to union guys. I can do that.
I walked into the office and was surprised to discover everyone working there seemed younger than me. And there was contemporary yuppie music blaring from the front desk, out of two cheap computer speakers. The pretty girl at the front desk was wearing so much makeup I couldn't really see her face, and she averted her eyes as soon as I made eye contact. I interviewed with another young woman, when it became clear that it was all about sales. I didn't exactly hide the fact that I wasn't all that interested, but when she asked if I wanted to stay for the informative "second interview," I was like, ok, sure.
I sat down in a circle of, well, losers - from a success perspective. Not all of them. There was one recent college graduate, who hadn't been totally kicked around by the job market the past four years, though she likely had more debt than anyone in the room. Most of the guys were working class themselves. There was an army wife from Missouri who, when it came time to introduce herself, went on and on like she forgot she was talking. There was a mortgage guy who got out of the business because it had become so "distasteful." Everyone, including myself, talked about how much they wanted to make the world a better place - except the mortgage guy. After introductions, there was a canned speech by the maybe thirty year old Brian leading the meeting, while some dirt bag sat in the corner silently without introducing himself, and took notes about each of us. Then the Brian introduced the introductory video.
I thought it was a farce at first, like they were making fun of fat cat rich guys. Then I realized it was a compilation of the company yearly meeting, set to rock and roll. The leadership looked union, and talked union, except when they got to talking about how much money they made. There were profiles of this twenty something worth two million, and that twenty-something making $435,000/yr, etc. The last guy was the CFO, I think, congratulating his people for their honor and integrity, before he ended the video by saying something about how cool it was to be among so many rich people. I remember thinking, if these guys showed this video to any of the union guys they were trying to sell to, they'd never sell another policy. It might be the end of the business, which has been around for awhile - which wouldn't be good for existing policies of course. Maybe the insurance is good, I don't know. It must pay out, or word would get around. It should probably be cheaper than it is, though. The Brian wouldn't look me in the eye after that, and I didn't even say anything. The rest of the spiel was about how much money you could make. Quite the gravy train, to retire in ten years. Hard to get people to sell insurance, I guess.
I sat down with the girl from the initial interview, after, for the "third interview." She couldn't get rid of me fast enough. I didn't get a call back for the "fourth interview."
The job search got considerably better after that. I'll get to that in part two.
PS: My deepest gratitude, to those readers who have contributed to me recently. You kept the water on, preventing condemnation. Thank you so much - and blessings, for you and yours.