Tag Archive: interview


Disclaimer: No American in their right mind (aside from Miss Piggy) should ever refer to themselves as “moi.”

Yesterday made two weeks at my new job. So far I pretty much have all the same complaints that I mentioned in my last post. I put in slightly over 50 hours last week, which was pretty exhausting. But at least the paycheck will be nice. My feet have mostly gotten used to the hours, but this was my “long” week (only one day off) and no matter how you slice it that’s rough. My next day off will be Thursday, but I’ll have next Sunday off, so it won’t be quite as bad as last week.

On Tuesday I had an interview at an animal hospital. I think it went really well, fingers crossed. She said the next step would be to set up a “working interview” where I’d meet with some of the higher ranking people and then shadow an assistant for an hour or two and observe everything they’re doing. Evidently in the past they had a pretty high turnover – they’re an emergency animal hospital, and I guess a lot of people didn’t realize they’d be seeing dogs and cats that were hit by cars and had other life-threatening issues. So they decided to start doing these working interviews so people could see exactly what they were in for and weed out those who probably couldn’t handle it. I think I could. Especially if it gets me out of retail. They’re looking for mostly second shift, which is from 4pm to midnight – essentially perfect for my body clock. It would most likely start as part-time and transition into full-time. If that’s the case I can see if my current job would let me cut back to a few days a week so I can do both. If not then I’ll go with part-time and make it work until I either find a second job or transition into full-time hours. She said that someone would contact me in a few days to schedule my working interview, but as of today (Monday) no one had, so I called up there on my lunch break. I spoke with someone who said he would talk to her sometime today and they would call me back either tonight or tomorrow night. Nothing yet, so hopefully tomorrow night I’ll hear from them.

This past Thursday, in addition to being my day off, was my birthday. The big 3-5. Or as I like to refer to it, my “seventh annual 29th birthday.” Nothing too eventful happened. I did some grocery shopping; a card came in the mail from my parents; I watched a movie; I got birthday wishes on Facebook from people I haven’t had actual conversations with in 15+ years. Fun times.  When I returned to work on Friday I bought myself a little present – a purple Silvertone Strat copy that we had for $129. We get a 30% employee discount, and a part of me has missed having a guitar with a whammy bar, so I figured why not. I spent a big chunk of last week tuning all the guitars and seeing how they play, so even though this guitar was pretty cheap I had a good idea what I would be getting myself into. I really like it, even though I doubt I’ll use it that often. But after the past few months, I feel like I deserve a little treat.

In other news, I finally settled upon a concept for my piece(s) for the “Rock Show” at Zapow. I have a collection of oddly shaped frames that I’ve been waiting for just the perfect time to use, and I think this might be it. One large one will be a painting of a Marshall amp head. A small one will be a drawing of a humbucker pickup. And a small frame with three small openings will feature a “pedal board” consisting of three classic effects pedals. Basically, taking my recent technology theme and applying it to the technology used to make rock music. I figure everyone else will be doing portraits of rock stars and cartoons of head bangers and band logos and whatnot. I need something that will fit with my distinctive styles, and I think this works perfectly. Now all I need is time to work on it.

And that’s pretty much where we’re at right now. Time to wrap things up and force myself to sleep so I can be up before the sun tomorrow morning. Oh joy!

 

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A Week Of Work

So I have now been employed by Alan’s Jewelry and Pawn for a week. I’m still training, but I’m not sure how long I’ll stick around. It has its good points and its bad points, much like any job. But the bad seem pretty overwhelming to me. I have a few major complaints…

1. The hours. I knew going in that it would be over 40 hours a week, and I don’t have a problem with that. What I do have a problem with is how those hours are arranged and what you can and can’t do during them. The shifts are enormous – typically from 8:30 in the morning until 7:00 or so at night. One week you work five days, the next week six. During those shifts you get two fifteen minute breaks and an hour lunch break. The only problem is there’s no break room, nor anywhere to sit at all except for the stairwell, and unless you’re on one of the above breaks, you’re not allowed to sit there. You’re also strongly encouraged to limit water and bathroom breaks to the absolute minimum.

With no break room, lunch becomes a wasted hour that ends up costing more money than it’s worth. No one wants to sit in a stairwell for an hour, and the summer heat makes sitting in your car unrealistic. That leaves going somewhere as the main option. Going home is cheaper than going out to eat, but either way I’m wasting gas. I’d much rather take another fifteen minute break and leave 45 minutes sooner, but that’s not an option. Also not an option: moving your days around, switching shifts with coworkers, or getting any time off around Christmas. So basically it’s 45-50 hours a week, spent on your feet, with very little water entering or leaving your body, and if you don’t like that there’s really nothing you can do about it.

2. Everyone who ranks above me tells me to do things in a different way. It’s pretty much impossible to know if you’re being trained correctly when the answers you get to your questions are completely different depending on who you ask.

3. I’ve barely been able to do what I was hired to do (sell musical instruments). I understand there are many departments and many different types of products and transactions, but it’s a bit frustrating when you take a job specifically to focus on something you like, only to spend more time learning other things. I’ve spent entirely too much time messing with guns and jewelry (our two biggest money-makers, neither of which interests me even a little). I’ve mostly gotten the hang of the pawn/sell process, bill pays are easy, check cashing isn’t too hard, and walking the sales floor is like every other retail job I’ve ever had. Why can’t I do those sorts of things when there’s no one in the music section and when I get someone asking about guns or jewelry or power tools or whatever else, find someone who knows about those things? There’s something to be said about workers who can cover all the bases and do a variety of tasks, but the Industrial Revolution was built on specialized labor.

4. The pawn business is crooked as hell. We base what we pay for things on what they sell for on eBay, giving about a third of what they go for in decent condition. Then we turn around and sell them at scarcely less than full retail. We pride ourselves on being a place where people can bargain, but we refuse to come down too low. Today there was a man who bought a $20,000 diamond who was also interested in an XBox 360. The store manager told me to treat him like the most important customer I’ve ever had. When I pulled out one of the 30 XBox’s on the shelf and he asked how low we could go on it, I assured him we would give him a great bargain. Then I asked the store manager how low we could go, and he told me to take 20% off the sticker. The “most important customer” who just spent $20,000 can only save about $15 on his video game system. Something seems a little off there. And we haven’t even gotten to the crazy interest rates on loans and the many fees for check cashing, bill pays, and using a credit card.

So yeah… those are my main complaints. I’m sure the money will be good (they still haven’t told me my exact rate of pay) but I’m not sure it’s worth it. I’m still keeping my eye out for something better, and when I find it I’ll jump. Speaking of which, tomorrow night (night?) I have an interview with one of the animal hospitals I applied to. They’re a 24 hour hospital, and luckily the person in charge of hiring veterinary assistants works night shift. She called me and we played phone tag for a while before I finally got to speak to her the other day. I’m hoping she likes me, and that they give their assistants full-time hours. If so I’ll definitely take the job, even if the money isn’t as good. If it’s only part-time hours, I’ll talk to my current job and see if it’s possible to cut down to part-time. If not I’m not passing up the opportunity to do what I’ve been studying the past few months, so I’ll settle for part-time and try to find a second job, possibly going back to the gas station if I have to. One way or the other I will have a job I like that pays well, even if it takes a little work to get there.

 

So my date last night with Lauren never happened. Sometime around 1:00 in the afternoon she sends me a text saying she won’t be able to make it out, that I’m a nice guy, but she “just isn’t feeling it” and doesn’t want to lead me on. I’m not exactly sure where that came from. She gave me every indication that she enjoying going out with me, even going as far as to say after our last date that if she wasn’t feeling sick she would kiss me. Perhaps I’m old-fashioned, but that sounds a bit like leading me on – say you would kiss me, arrange for a third date, and then merely hours before cancel.

I seem to have very similar experiences with nearly every girl I date. Things appear to be going well, and they give no outward indication otherwise, then randomly either say they don’t feel anything, or just stop returning my texts and phone calls. The weird thing is that this has only been my experience with girls close to my own age. I’ve dated several girls who were quite a bit younger than I, and they had no problem being upfront about things. It’s only when I date within my immediate age group (for the sake of argument we’ll say 25-40) do I encounter women who want to play stupid games. While there are exceptions to every rule, and I realize this is a potentially offensive stereotype, my experience has been that if a woman is over 25 and not in some kind of relationship, there’s a damn good reason why. At the risk of sounding creepy, I think I’ll stick with the youngins, I seem to have better luck with them.

But anyways… in a lot of ways it was a blessing in disguise. My day was already busy enough without having to fit in a date. My wallet is already empty enough without a fancy dinner at an expensive French restaurant that I might not even have liked. And as unlikely as it seemed when I got that text, I actually wound up having a much better evening than I likely would have had…

I went to 51 Grill and tried their new NY style pizza, which was actually quite good, and very cheap. When I got home my neighbors were hanging out and I struck up a conversation with them. Michelle had a kitten, but decided to give it back because he evidently missed his sister kitty and was too needy for her to give him the time he needs. But last night she had that kitten, and his sister. Her friend kept them both and since they were already hanging out, decided to bring them by. I’m not crazy about cats, and they kill my allergies, but kittens are adorable. But the real treat of the night was meeting Michelle’s friend, oddly enough named Kat. We started chatting and as the night went on it was basically us talking to each other and not so much all of the other people who were there. We really hit it off, she’s very much my type, and I think there could be some chemistry there. The next time I see Michelle I’m going to ask if her friend is single, and if so, perhaps I’ll try my luck. The worst that could happen is I’m back to where I am right now – single and frustrated. I think I’ll take my chances and see what happens.

In other news, I got my prints back from Henco today. They look decent, but that’s more my fault than theirs. Most of them were originally scanned at a relatively low DPI, so blowing them up made things fuzzy and grainy. I was tempted to re-scan them before I brought them there, but most had already been framed and I just didn’t want to go through all the trouble of taking them apart and framing them again. But I’m sure no one else will really care, I’m just a perfectionist. I’m about to start putting together my little bags-o-prints and pricing them, then I need to make some tags for my originals. I found a guy on Reddit who is going to photograph some of my canvas pieces for only $5 a shot (compared to the $30 I spent last time).

Basically I’m just tying up loose ends now, Saturday is the big day. And if you feel like doing a little reading, I was recently interviewed for the local blog Ashvegas. But that’s about it for now, tomorrow is another busy day…