So I have some temp work lined up for next week. I'll be assembling driveshafts for Freightliner trucks, so if your Freightliner develops driveshaft issues, it was...the guy standing next to me. I finally got a callback from one of my other prospects which may lead to a second interview. You guys aren't doing your "Marney-get-a-job-now" dances! I know because I still don't have a job. I may be able to sell off my BMWs in the next couple of weeks which will make me feel better...or at least less shitty about having these great cars and not being able to make one work. And it will put cash in the bank.
More adventures from Job Search Land. SO...on Tuesday I go out to a Target over here in West Seattle that says they are hiring. It's for a $7.25 an hour floor attendant position, but I figure I can start there and maybe move up pretty quickly based on my 7 years of retail experience. The ad says "Fill out an application and have an interview the same day!" no specific hours or times. So I put on my interview clothes and grab a copy of my resume and I set off for Target and get there at 3 in the afternoon. There are is a line of about 5 people ahead of me to use 2 application "computers" I use these "skeptical" quotes for a reason. I wait. I wait. I wait. I wait. Two and a half hours goes by. The people ahead of me slowly plug their way through the electronic application. One is a nice woman trying to keep ahold of her toddler, one is a hispanic woman who has probably never used a computer in her life. None of them is dressed for an interview, but I see them finish up and go on to interview. Finally it is my turn, I sit at this little voting-booth-thing and get onto this little glorified phone with a scratched up LCD screen. It's so scratched up I can barely read the little dot-matrix print on it. There is a small qwerty keyboard sticking out of the bottom of the phone like some phones have address books. I start my process and whip through it in about 20 minutes. Once done it tells me to go to the customer service desk and call the operator from their phone and they will get me my interview. It's now ten to six and the operator says they won't be conducting any more interviews today, and if I could leave my name and number and someone will call me and set up an interview for another day. I give her my info and head home, wondring if I have just wasted my entire afternoon. The next day I get my interview clothes back on (new ones) grab my resume (same one) and head back to Target, figuring that there are people there now filling out applications and getting interviews, so they should be able to call up my info and interview me right away. I get there and let them know that I am here and they ask my name and ask me to have a seat, somone will be right with me. I sit down and over the course of 15 minutes I smile at 6 managers as they walk by me into the snack bar. Not one smiles back. Right when I am about to walk out, a lady comes up to me and asks me if I filled out an application. I tell her yes, explain about what I did yesterday. She says that they are having trouble printing my app. and someone will call me. Whatever. That's what the EMP said they were going to do last week. After my interview I was supposed to get a call or something in the mail letting me know what was going on. Nothing. I called them on Monday and left a message, I called today and left a message. I am going to call every day for a week and leave messages if I have to, if that does not work, I'll call twice a day. I will get them to treat me with the respect I deserve. If you say you will communicate with someone within a specified period of time, DO IT, or don't make that kind of promise. Then when they call looking for the communication they were promised, DON"T DODGE THEIR CALLS.
It is 1:30 am and as usual I can't sleep. I come out into the living room, turn on some music, and climb onto the internet. Shane has had a link to megnut for some time now and I rediscover the joy of internet navel contemplation. It has been a while since I have thought about the evolution of the internet. Without thinking about it I have been involved, by creating my little blogs. Meg has a column in which she lays out the blog's place in the future of the internet. It is very interesting, and Meg is clearly a very smart lady. I was in Albertson's the other day and a lady asked me what "oddtodd.com" was (I was proudly wearing my new tshirt bearing that address on the back). I told her it was a website that I was a fan of. She asked "Is that on that AOL thing?" I thought for a split second about the conversation that I could get into here at the checkout at Albertson's. This lady obviously was thinking of the internet as AOL the way some people call all tissue Kleenex. I could probably explain to her the difference, and how AOL was really only a small part of a much bigger monster, but really, why confuse her. I just said "Yes." and that was that. It surprises me that there are still holdouts. I'm not talking about that lady or my 80 year old grandfather in Germany. He will never do anything except look over someone elses shoulder at the internet and that's fine (although I would love to be able to email him). I'm talking about people from my generation and even younger who refuse to see that the day is coming where they will need to have a computer just to keep up with the rest of society. There is another level of people on the web. People like my dad. He is the kind of guy who does not put bumper stickers on his cars because he does not want anyone to know anything about him that he does not choose to reveal. I can understand that, and it places him in a class of "watchers", kind of voyeurs on the web. To be perfectly fair, he was quoted on the web a bunch around the y2k non-crisis calling it what it was...with the proper preparation a non-crisis (and catching crap from a mess of doomsdayers trying to sell generators and Powersauce bars at inflated prices). But that was carefully released information that he kept control of. I like to think that my ramblings mean something to someone else out there, but they are just the miscellanious ramblings of an umemployed salesman, not directed at anyone in particular. How important can they be? As important as you want to make them, and as important as I think they are.
This stuff I like. Safeway Chinese food, cold coke on a hot day, vintage muscle cars with perfect paint, VWs - all VWs, cowboy hats, the smell of burning tire rubber and racing fuel, The Simpsons, reflective sunglasses, scrambled eggs, malts instead of shakes, cherry lime rickeys, morose classical music in the dark, the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright, watching the sun come up before a long hot day, staying awake on that same day long enough to greet the sun the next day, looking down at the ground from a jetliner and memorizing the geography so I can see where I was on a map later, really well done, non-insulting to my intelligence, artistic advertising, microbrew packaging, David Letterman, Jon Stewart, dogs, cats, animals in general, MTV2, Apple Computers, Tenacious D, Radiohead, Zepplin, Jim Croche, playing Frisbee in the sun, napping in the shade, driving from dawn to dusk, free samples at grocery stores, grilled foods, work that allows me to be myself, shows my strengths, develops my weaknesses and rewards my loyalty.
So I'm drinking my first Vanilla Coke. I saw The Daily Show make a big deal out of Good Morning America stopping everything to have this big unveiling of Vanilla Coke on the day it was released, and I agreed that it brought into question their journalistic integrity. Since when is the release of a new soda news? Since Coke opened their checkbook. It's pretty disgusting, but there it is. Then I saw that Oddtodd had one and didn't like it. That pretty much sealed it's fate, I wasn't gonna waste my money on something I was sure I wasn't going to like. But then Shane called and told me it was alright, so I went out and bought a half-rack, and he was right. Not bad. Why am I writing this? I have no idea. Nothing better to say I guess. Well...there is the fact that I got turned down for another job today, but I don't want to talk about that.
If you get all emotional thinking about how the people in the WTC actually died on Sept 11, don't read this New York Times article. If you do want to read accounts of frantic last-minute cellphone calls, text messages, and a few amazing stories of actual survivors. Do read it. I find it strange to think that for my children, the attacks on the WTC will probably be something that they won't have a real connection to. Just something they will learn about in history class. Wierd. Oh, you may have to register with the NYTimes, but it is really a well written piece.
So two things happened yesterday that make the beginning of summer kind of wierd and a little sad. Kristin, Jenn, Shane and I all went out to Lake Samammish state park for some fun in the sun along with a co-worker of Jenn and Kristin's ans some of that co-workers friends. Right after we got there two fire trucks, 3 ambulances and what must have been the entire Issaquah police force show up. Turns out a guy drowned in the swimming area (Shane saw them pulling the guy out of the lake). That's pretty sad. We were all thinking that guy's family is now going to associate the first day of summer with the death of their family member. If I love you, and you gotta go, do it on some random date, like any time in August. There's nothing going on in August. Later that night I had a party to go to at a former co-worker's house. Before the party Kristin and I chilled out at home and watched the news and a Sherriff's deputy was shot to death with his own gun after the naked man he was chasing wrestled it from him. I was discussing at the party how the events of the day make it seem kind of wierd, and this super-hippy guy who turns up at these parties decided to chime in with "Yeah, the cop-civilian kill ratio is about 1-20". He says this kind of nonchalantly, as if that is the point I was trying to make. What he was saying was "More cops need killing to even up the odds". This guy is always convinced that everything is a conspiracy to make him buy Nikes and eat at McDonald's and toe the line, and everyone who does not eat only raw vegetables and drink bottled water is commiting suicide. He is one of those guys who belives that he is the only one who can possibly be right, and can't belive that anyone would not listen to him. There were a few others in the room when he made his cop-killing endorsement and we all just looked at him, paused for a beat and then continued talking as if he had not said anything. Sometimes arguing simply has no point.
So I am on IMDB checking out some stuff, and on their main page there is a link to a trailer for the Stephen Speilberg movie coming out in December, called "Catch Me If You Can". I go to the link, and it is a Windows media player file, which I hate, because they always look like dogmeat along with Realplayer (Quicktime rules). I wait for it to buffer and I am presented with a clip from an opera? This is something that IMDB seems to have been pretty proud of scooping, so they put it right at the top of their main page. You'd think someone would have checked to see that it was the right trailer.
Need a flying disk? A travel mug? Buy it here and get a tshirt while you are at it. Check the back of the baseball jersy. Designed by guest designer Beau Owens! He is the man.
Alright, The interview went well, I thought. They are going to check my refrences and get back to me on Monday. Then I go in for an interview with the owner. I'll be going to Minority Report at 3. Any one in the Seattle area wanna join me?
I have a job interview today, so wish me luck. After that I'm going to see Minority Report with a buddy. I just read on Kevin Smith's site that there is a Daredevil teaser before it. I will report back on all this evening.
Ya know, I was not looking forward to the new Austin Powers movie. After seeing this preview, I am convinced that it is the stupidest movie....that I have ever wanted to see. BONUS : there is a MINI in it.
So the new Thomas Harris movie is coming out in October. The Red Dragon is the first novel in the Lecter series by Harris, if you know that you probably already know that Manhunter was based on that same book. I think Bret Ratner is going to do a better job with it than Mann did back in '86...and that statement comes from a guy who is a big Michael Mann fan. Mann just had too much "Miami Vice" baggage attached to his style then (He's working on a new cop show for TV right now starring Tom Sizemore. Yay!).
I was taking some mail out to the box and noticed that my big ol' Kiwi plant is buzzing. I go to check it out and it's flowering all over and the bees are just going crazy. So since I don't have image hosting anywhere, if you want to see a couple of pics of the Kiwi and some bees click the "...tell me..." link to the right and I will email them to you. I'm going to hunt around for free image hosting.
If you check the official site on that last link, you'll see smaller, less memory intensive versions of the trailer. For some reason they won't link.
Wow. You know, nothing lets me leave my mind behind like a good surfing documentary. Really well done photography is the key. Those cool underwater shots are what sell me. Plus I have this idea in mind that someday I am going to spend a year on a sandy white beach on a tropical island, with someone feeding me drinks with umbrellas in pineapples. Surfing looks like a lot of work. Fun to watch though.
OK..."Spherion Assesment" called me back. They are the automated interview contractor for Best Buy. A nice lady there dumped my old record, so I am going to try the telephone interview again later on today. Just so anyone reading this knows Best Buy is not the only place I am applying, but I have become a little superstious as of late about posting anything about where I am applying on my Blog, so rest assured, I am filling out applications left and right.
I might have spoken too soon. Best Buy booted me back to the company that manages their automated interview system, like I am just a glitch in their system and the right IT person can take care of me...we'll see.
Alright, so I don't hate Best Buy so much anymore. I got a call from their customer service department this morning (before 9) and the lady I talked to was very nice, asked me a few questions, and gave me a number for their HR department. We'll see where this gets me...more to come.
So I go down to Best Buy for a job. I arrive Sunday morning at 10:30 when they open at 11:00. My bad, so I wait. Once the store opens and the throng of other waiters goes by I flag down an older manager-type guy. I ask about how to get a job there. He is very nice, and informs me that the ONLY way is to go through an automated interview procedure online or on the phone. He gives me a card with all of the info I need. I go home and go to the website. I answer a bunch of dumb questions that are only neccesary if you can't have a real person ask a question ("Do you think that someone who steals from their employer should be fired?" and "If someone steals less than $5 from their employer, should they be given a second chance?" with a couple of questions between them to see how consistent I am. I hate being manipulated). Once I get done with the questions a box pops up that wants my phone number. As much as I try it won't accept my number. It just keeps telling me to enter it exactly the way I have entered it. I close the window, give up and pick up the phone. At the beginning of the procedure the system informed me of an 800 number in case I have problems. I call that number. I get another automated system that right away asks me for my SSN, so I enter it and then it asks me whether afternoon or morning is a better time for me to receive a call. I answer that and then the system tells me that someone will be in contact with me during the time that I specified. At this point they STILL DON'T HAVE MY PHONE NUMBER!!! and I am very frustrated. I decide to try the phone system. I call the toll-free interview number and that system asks me for my SSN right away and then informs me that I have already applied for a position, so I will have to wait 30 days to apply again. Now I'm just a little mad. I figure that since I saw a store full of busy employees down there, they had to get hired somehow. I grab my resume and head back down. I go in and ask one of the guys by the front door if I can speak with a manager. He pages the "MOD" through the overhead system. I wait. I wait. I wait. 10 minutes goes by. I figure since I'm looking for a job I don't want to seem pushy, but this guy does not know why I'm here at this point. I could be an angry customer who was forced to wait a long time. I ask the kid from the door to page him again, which he does. I wait. I wait. I wait. I wait. Another 10 minutes goes by. Then the kid from the door comes over and says he does not know what the holdup is but the "bald black guy" (that he points to) in the middle of the store is the guy I want to talk to. I go over and politely stand back as he is talking to two young employees. One of them asks me if she can help me, and I tell her that I am waiting to talk to her manager. He hears this, stops in mid sentence, turns to me and asks what he can do. I tell him that I just want a minute of his time and he just stares at me like "Well..." So I tell him that I was in earlier and I found out about the automated interview system, but that it had booted me and told me that I had to wait 30 days. "What should I do?" I asked, holding my resume in my hand, which outlines my 7 years of retail experience at IKEA. His response : "Sorry about that, you'll just have to wait." Then he stared at me again, like "Are you done wasting my time?" I was so taken aback that I just mumbled "...fine..." and I left. I went home and found a Best Buy customer service page and wrote this story to them. This time it let me give my phone number. That was Sunday. It's Monday evening. I'll let you know if I ever get a call. Not friggin' likely.
We Had our dance today. It was satisfactory, but not as much fun as the last dance. I danced with my comrades and a couple of raffish gentlemen. (Chuckling) I'm just remembering the fight today. Stephen ran by and knocked down Ryan M.! He then got upset at Alex for laughing about it. He tried to inflict bodily harm on Alex with the help of Andrew! Golly! Alex is tough for fighting off the fisticuffs of two fellows a year older than him. I obtained a passel of sweets today, and I found out who my Secret Santa was...it was Graham! (that scoundrel!) My gift was a tasteful assembly of scented bath oils and such. I just got off the telephone with Thomas. I am excited to meet him, but troubled by a fight with his brother (chuckling). I must be off. Tally-ho!
I wrote that last entry in the car (on paper, with a pen!) yesterday while I was waiting for Kristin to get off work. That was before I decided to quit. This morning I just realized how petty the jerks at Younker were. At one point yesterday I walked over the the desk that I had been assigned by my manager when no one else was around. A bunch of the other sales guys were now standing there as if I had interrupted a secret conversation. Dee, April and May salesman of the month, and 4-foot-nothing, 12 year old Aisan boy lookalike for life, is pulling my stuff out of my desk. I asked what he was doing and he said it was his desk and because he had "pull" now with the sales managers (because of his salesman of the month status), he didn't have to share with anyone anymore. I thought about telling him to take his "pull" into the sales office and get my manager to come out and tell me to change desks, but realized that it was not important to me where my desk was in the building. Later that day my manager, Chris, was talking about how the supercharged Xterra was the only factory supercharged engine on the market today. I thought about that and said, "What about the MINI Cooper S?" he just looked mad at me for pointing out his mistake, so I thought better of adding the myriad of SVT Ford products with superchargers, the Jag Super V8, and the entire line of supercharged Mercedes to my list. I'm sure that there are more. What a jerk. What a bunch of cocksucking jerks.
I want to cry. I turn up the music in my car as I drive home from what must be the shittiest job on earth so I can't hear my own thoughts about what a fool I was for leaving IKEA. You could probably offer me a job eating horseshit right now for $24,000 a year and I would smile and take it and thank you for the opportunity. Car sales is the most dishonest field I could have gotten into. Why didn't I see it coming? Now I'm too gunshy to quit after 8 months of unemployment, and I'm afraid of my first deal 'cause I don't want to have to do my William H. Macy from "Fargo" imitation : "Wow!" I will say, "The boss has never done THAT!" I am being asked to frustrate and confuse people into purchasing cars. There has to be a better way.