[In this post, our hero has amazing difficulty in the act of becoming employed, in spite of major effort.]
COMING OUT OF THE CLOSET
The bedroom closet is a bit shallow but extremely wide. I'd estimate that it could sleep two people, foot to foot. Four people foot to foot and breast to breast; twenty-four people if you slice them correctly. How, you ask, does this relate to employment? By a damn fine thread, as most of my output tends to go.
When interviewing, I discovered it is strongly advised not to wear Hawaiian shirts. A wag suggested I flout the system and wear Hawaiian underwear but the jury is still out on that. After paying an absolutely frightening amount for a new dress shirt in the wrong size, the wife came up with about seven of them in the correct size. From the closet, of course. I'm beginning to think that this closet occupies several more dimensions than we know of, as stuff seems to appear and disappear when searching. It probably also does this when we're not searching, but I'll leave this to the quantum mechanics to work out (Shroedinger's shirt?). Speaking of quantum effects, most everything in the closet has dust on it but only the very top.
So there are seven additional shirts in the correct size. This indicates that at some point, it was possible to purchase shirts off the shelf in the correct size. Just not anymore, plus they're a lot more expensive. Ain't progress grand? I'm not good at math (or history or science or databases) but I'm going to say that these business shirts in the correct size look incredible for what must be sixteen years old. No, really, they look every bit as good as the hideously expensive new shirt, including one that's almost the same shirt.
Speaking of Hawaiian shirts, I have a strange fondness for them. Because of their dusty-topped condition, the wife decided to wash them. As it turns out, I have rather a lot of them. Really rather a lot of them. The beauty of Hawaiian shirts (or most things) is that if you hold onto them long enough, they'll be back in style in a few years. I don't want to say my shirts are old but they have come and gone out of style four times.
THE JOB SEARCH
One of my mentors suggested I arrange the Hawaiian shirts very close to the middle of the closet and the business shirts at the far unused end. This way the Universe knows I need a job in which Hawaiian shirts are just fine and business shirts are laughed at. So the Hawaiian shirts are just to the right of center, because if I cross the center line, my wife will bite me in a very sensitive place (and not in a good way).
Having located the jacket, with dust only on the top, I am now officially ready to go on interviews. That is, if there were any. According to the ads, there are many jobs available... just not for me, apparently.
The recruiters are driving me up a tree. The metric tonne of Indian recruiters have called about very old jobs and want to submit me for them regardless of skills or location. Last week I got calls about jobs in Colorado and Wyoming. One job search turned up a result for restroom attendant (don't laugh - I applied). Ok, maybe not. The local recruiters are a different species altogether. They call, spend some quality time with me, sound incredibly interested, all but promise me a job and then I never hear from then again. I suspect these folks are recent graduates from local used car lots. I don't want to tar all recruiters with the same slime - one of them has actually called me back.
I did find a government job. I couldn't understand the job title or description, so I figured I'd be perfect for it and applied.
I am going to depart from this blog's entertainment and sarcasm focus to mention that this whole thing is downright depressing.
SUPPORTING THE AUTOMOTIVE REPAIR AND RENTAL INDUSTRIES
No post to this blog would be complete without some new and exciting information about the car. The collision repair place for the insurer called to tell us the car was ready. When we got there, we discovered that there was yet another five-hundred-dollar deductible. This topic has actually gone to the realm of logic: how can an unemployed guy make five-hundred-dollars appear out of thin air? You might be surprised to learn that my piles of hundreds have been depleted by unemployment and tithing to Dunkin Donuts for the dog's coffee. And even if I had hundreds in the closet, they'd be dusty up top.
Not being independently wealthy has been complicated by another ironic phone call, this time from the insurance company. It seems we are just about to exceed the number of rental car days for the year. I've never even heard of this happening. So every day that passes is another day we have to pay for our rental.
Causing five-hundred-dollars to appear is no small feat. Do they expect me to pull it out of my buttocks? Let's face it - if I could, as my friend pointed out, I wouldn't need a job. Perhaps I'm just a masochist.
The entire process of getting the car repaired this time has been one of frustration. I suppose it's ironic that this is the only time the person who hit us had insurance. There was a huge amount of confusion over whose insurance was going to cover it and if theirs was, why were we paying a deductible. After weeks and many phone calls, the repair place overruled the insurer and our insurance is covering it. The lady in charge of the process possesses all the grace and charm of Genghis Khan.
Off we went to pick up our baby. The wife got back into the rental and just looked at me. What now? An additional part had to be repaired and the car, which was 'ready' the prior day, would take another hour or three. And we're racing the clock on the rental.
Know what? I have to give major points to Hyundai. As you've undoubtedly read, we have driven a lot of rental cars lately (stop laughing) and my wife still prefers her Hyundai. There are definitely features on the other cars that surpass ours (seats, stereo, handling) but the Hyundai is still the better car (or close) overall. The current rental is from a country known for its meatballs. We have this car because the choice was between it and a Mini Cooper. It hurts me to even look at a Mini Cooper; my eyes feel cramped and unprotected. I have never priced the Meatballmobile but I understand they're fairly expensive. And after driving it for a few weeks, I'm not impressed. It's bumpy as hell. Yes, the power seats have presets and lower back support and the engine has balls BUT that doesn't justify its premium over the Hyundai.
WHAT IS LIVING IN THE KITCHEN
We have an issue with trashcans in our house. By this I mean we have a Dog Issue. He loves trash, among other things. After the little monster kept getting into the trashcans, we bought the cans with the lids that you have to lift. This kept the dog out for all of two weeks. Between his innate intelligence and my wife's failure to put the lid back, he was back into things immediately. Failing that, he just knocked the thing over and took what he wanted.
I have no idea whose idea this is or where it was found but we have a new trashcan. This one is an automatic can, where you wave your hand over it and the lid opens by itself. Then closes by itself. Until the dog figures this one out, it's a perfect solution, plus it's pretty neato for the people.
The other night, we heard a weird noise in the kitchen. Then the dog started barking in its general direction. My parents would say we had ghosts - I'm skeptical. It turned out to be the can, opening and closing by itself. If the dog hadn't barked, I'd swear he just figured out how to operate it.
Bright as he is, he sometimes fails to notice his mortal enemy, the mailman, coming up the drive but the moment you put your coffee cup on the table, he starts barking like a rabid animal and circling the door. I yell between hysterical barks and he somehow manages to completely ignore me. If ignoring me weren't a regular occurance with everyone in the house, I'd be upset.