Fantasy meets Reality

By Mir
September 1, 2004
Category Job? Huh?

I’m just sitting down to breathe, now. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Much better. The kids are in bed, all the paperwork Chickadee brought home for me is filled out, tomorrow’s lunches are packed, and I interviewed and lived to tell the tale.

The Fantasy:
I have most of the day before my interview to relax, unwind, and prep at a leisurely pace. I arrive early and fully prepared.

The Reality:
After I drop the kids, I go to the store for a portfolio to carry. I am halfway out of the shower when I realize I didn’t shave my legs. I am fully dressed and wondering why I feel funny when I realize I forgot to put on a bra. The first pair of pantyhose have a run; the second pair twist around into a tourniquet on my left leg until I remove them and start over. The perfect pair of (new) shoes I’d picked out had fallen off my heels twice by the time I made it down the stairs (had to switch to another pair). I spent so much time living my own private comedy of errors that I neglected to eat lunch, and this company’s campus is bigger than my alma mater’s so I had to park about eight miles from the entrance. I arrive barely on time, frazzled, and starving.

The Fantasy:
“Are you Mir Idiotboy’slastname? Come right in; we’ve been waiting for you. Our finest manager is waiting to interview you, and might I say that you are looking lovely and professional today!”

The Reality:
“Line forms over there. Go check in with the other 300 patsies.”

The Fantasy:
“I see here from your resume that you’re well educated, with a varied background. Let’s talk about why you’d be a great addition to Big Company.”

The Reality:
“Can you work lots of overtime? We require overtime from all of our employees, particularly during tax season. Can you work until 11:00 PM when necessary?”

The Fantasy:
“You’re exactly the type of person we need in Division DoGood. Oddly enough, your strange combination of experience is just what we need over there.”

The Reality:
Interviewer: Blabbity blah blah blah overtime blah blah OVERTIME blah blah blah. Blah?
Me: Um, isn’t it true that in Division DoGood overtime is less of an issue, due to the nature of their work?
Interviewer: Huh? I work in Division GimmeMoney and I don’t know jack squat about Division DoGood. They’re totally different.
Me: Right, that’s what I’m asking. As you can see from my resume, I’d probably be a good fit in Division DoGood. I thought that was the position for which I was interviewing.
Interviewer: Yeah. Um. You should talk to someone else, I guess. Hey, you’re right… looks like you’re just what they’re looking for, I guess, except that I don’t know anything about them. Well, it was nice to meet you. Go stand back over there.
Me: What the…?

The Somewhat Strange But Good Reality:
I was able to locate someone who actually had a clue, and basically had to narc on my interviewer and point out that he, you know, didn’t interview me. The bad news is that no one seemed surprised, but the good news was that I was passed off to someone from Division DoGood who talked to me for a few minutes and then took my resume to “personally hand off to the hiring manager” and told me she would make sure I was brought back for the next round. So let’s all have a very restrained, quiet, not-too-excited, non-fate-tempting WOOT and keep all those appendages crossed until we see what happens next.

And as if that wasn’t enough for one day….

The Fantasy:
I pick the kids up from daycare; they are thrilled to see me; Chickadee tells me all about her bus ride, her first day at school, her time at aftercare, and gives me an especially big hug and kiss in thanks for the note I put in her lunch.

The Reality:
I pick the kids up from daycare; they are having so much fun that they don’t want to leave; I extract tiny uninformative factoids from Chickadee under great protest. The bus was okay, the school work was too easy, her dress was covered in paint from some project at aftercare, and–my personal favorite–“There was a note in my lunch?”

(On your napkin, I told her. Oh, she said. They gave us napkins with our milk.)

But hey, we made it. All of us. And there’s a tiny glimmer of hope on the horizon. Also? There is a napkin in Chickadee’s lunch for tomorrow that says, “HEY! Read this napkin!!”


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