Posts in: July 2005

The Audition

The first step I planned to take in my revised life roadmap was to find a job or career I can stand for more than 20 minutes. So far, the only job I didn’t want to leave was Tully’s, and while my sister offered to have me come and stay with her in Seattle and resume work there, Seattle sucks and $7.85 an hour without benefits won’t pay the pickle-man (I do not know what this expression mean; I assume the explanation involves gigolos).

As it turns out, in another life I was a highly skilled office assistant, and in still another life I’m a really big (if not particularly bright) nerd, so the prospects don’t end with low-paying retail jobs. I’d be decently happy in a job like this if the job pressure is at a minimum; I used to while away the hours at crappy temp jobs thinking about my writing, and then I’d come home and write. Or I’d wake up early the following morning and write for several hours. I tend to write better when I’m not fully awake.

But I need some fun in my life, but I have a complicated conundrum: I’m tired of staying at home, but I invariably dislike almost all people. What the hell can I do, aside from pulling weird office pranks that only I’m aware of, to both be (sort of) social and enjoy myself?

My return from L.A. happened to coincide with the departure of the bass player in a local Chicago band I kinda-sorta know. So, I thought, “I play guitar, I kinda learned bass, and I like this band—what could possibly go wrong?” I asked them if I could audition, and they took pity on me and reluctantly agreed.

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A few years ago, I made a mistake. Not the first, and certainly not the last, but kind of a big one. During a summer of very few assignments, all of them pretty rough and obnoxious, I decided to give up on the exciting world of office temping. Sure, the jobs were—for the most part—stress-free and high-paying (when I left, I was making $19/hour to sit on my ass and occasionally type), but I got bored. I started playing bizarre pranks that only I understood and found funny; then I started pushing things and pushing things to see how far I could go before I got fired. When nobody even fired me the day I took a five-hour lunch, I finally decided it was time to quit.

I decided to move into the exciting, fast-paced world of retail coffee sales, a disastrous move if there ever was one. Sure, it was more exciting, but I had to work way harder for less pay. Also, I had to deal with—shudder—people. Furthermore, while I’ve been toiling in the miserable retail food-service industry, I’ve missed out on all sorts of extra office experience that could perhaps benefit me in, for example, finding a decent job upon college graduation.

I’ve been sending out my resume for weeks, rewriting it with lessening degrees of honesty, in an effort to make myself look like the cat’s ass, employment-wise. But, I decided, I need money now, so fuck it—I’ll go back to temping, gain experience, and hopefully luck out with a decent temp-to-hire position.

Step one: shove myself through the front door and get interviewed and tested.

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A Brief Example of Why I Don’t Like Any of My Friends

I’ve known Kelly since we were 12-years-old, but I didn’t really get to know her well until sophomore year of high school. We were in an awful play together, during which we spent the bulk of the time mocking everyone and everything around us while waiting to rehearse the combined total of five lines we had in the show. We’ve had ups and downs, friendship-wise, because sometimes she can be uniquely unpleasant.

Gradually, though, as she’s gone through college, she’s experienced more of the world, mellowed out a bit, and become an actual decent human being. Except when it comes to making plans.

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