Interview Etiquette

About 8 years ago now I went for what was probably my most interesting job interview ever. I wrote about it on my previous blog site and since I posted yesterday about trying to hide a stutter during an interview on the westutterandwedontcare blog, I thought I would share this one with you. I’ve left it written exactly the way it was all the way back on December 8, 2006.
I went for a job interview today and somewhere along the line it turned into an interview for Lavalife or some other dating service.

I arrived early for the 9 o’clock appointment and looked good. I was meeting with a consultant, someone the company hired to find them a suitable employee so a suit and tie wasn’t necessary. Still, I looked good. It’s my job to look good. If I don’t look good, the single, clueless men out there will have no idea how to look to impress women. Nicely pressed trousers, a striped shirt with a tie in a colour to match, comfortable, clean and trendy shoes. And the socks have to match. And for God’s sake, black shoes means a black belt. Brown shoes means a brown belt. Please remember that.

So, I’m sitting in the office early and the receptionist comes to greet me. She is, no word of a lie, the tallest woman I have ever seen. Tall, striking, and very very confident. She looks down at me and smiles, “You must be Kimberley’s 9 o’clock.” If I didn’t know exactly where I was I would have thought I had stepped into a rub and tug, you know, the type of massage parlour where it’s easier to get a happy ending than a back rub.

She gives me a form to fill out with all my vitals, SIN, address, work experience. When I was done I was supposed to ring a little bell and Kimberley would come. Again, I kept thinking I should just take off my clothes now and save her the time. Ring a bell for service? All the windows to the offices made me a little bashful but…

So I finish the form, ring the bell, and Kimberley comes around the corner. Thankfully, she wasn’t as tall as the receptionist so I didn’t feel dwarfed. She led me into the nearest room, grabbed a copy of my resume and set about business.

For the record, there was only a small round table in the room; no whirlpool, no massage table or oils, this was an interview after all. I was glad I had a woman interviewing me because I always seem calmer around them. I always have. I always feel like men are always thinking of ways to cut me down to size.

The interview starts brilliantly. My newly designed resume has removed all the crap and contains easy to read bite sized chunks of information that make me sound more important than I actually am. If any potential employers are reading this, strike that last sentence from your memory banks. I am important.

My resume lists the fact I just published a book which then took over the conversation. I describe the book, how long it took to write and some of my favourite topics in the book. For those who don’t know, it is a little non-fiction piece titled Weird Alberta Places. My interviewer is from the East coast of Canada, Newfoundland to be exact, and they have a charming little town there with a very odd name. This is what starts the whole interview on another level.

She tells me of this little town called Dildo. Yes, it is real, I promise. The fact this professional woman, and she was attractive too (although that didn’t matter on the job front), I must admit, brought up the word dildo got to me. I think it was the eyes. They were the softest shade of green I’ve seen. Not to be outdone, I told her of a story in Austria, where a tiny village keeps having their street signs taken because of the town’s name. The town is called Fucking. This is also true. You can’t make this up and not expect people to look for it on google maps.

So, the interview turns. She brushes my arm once and I think nothing of it. You know, she may have accidentally reached all the way across the table and just so happened to run her hand over my forearm. It could happen. Then comes the hair toss when I’m discussing my strengths. I’m thinking she’s so into me I could tell her anything and she won’t hear a word I say. Somehow, my better judgement wins out and I don’t say something stupid like “how would you like to end up face down on my pillows?” That, my friends, is probably an interview killer.

And the interview continues. She apologizes for the time it is taking and I say I have the morning off. She laughs and asks if we can catch a movie. I brush this off as well; she’s just trying to make me feel comfortable. I tell her lunch would be better, laugh, and continue to triumph my work ethic, my computer skills, and my rock hard abs. Okay, I made that last one up, I’m just seeing if you’re all listening.

All the while, she’s barely making eye contact, and when she does, it is brief and she quickly looks away. It kind of reminded me of that girl in junior high who really really really wanted you to hold her hand or maybe engage in some “heavy petting” but she was too shy to let you know. It was cute, I was flattered.

Naturally, I played it up. In this situation you have to don’t you? I told her I had been to Newfoundland (I haven’t, but my neighbour is from there so I know all about it) and I made up some stuff about 5 year plans and whatnot. Being a writer helps in the interview process; especially if you are creative and can think quickly. I am both creative and a quick thinker. Yay me.

The interview wrapped up with me being recommended for the initial job I interviewed for and two more. She said the passion I exuded about writing was obvious and it is easy to teach skills, not so easy to find confident and talented people. Confident and talented; hmmm, how little she knew. We joked for a few moments about things and I asked if her boyfriend or husband was free to see the movie since she had to work. She smiled and said, “you know I don’t have one.” I said “I know, but I can’t see a movie alone.”

I left it at that. I took her card, as per normal, shook her hand, making minimal eye contact because she always looked away, and walked out to a big sigh. I sent her an email that afternoon with the recommended additions to my resume. I never once mentioned dinner, but she did.

Sometimes, it’s good to be the Penguin.

5 thoughts on “Interview Etiquette

  1. Great stuff Ger fantastic! This weird occurrence actually happened when I was coming out of a test this morning. I hand the girl the test (she looked no older than 20) and instead of grabbing the test she grabs my arm, shocked I drop the test. I look at her and her eyes are calm and reassuring must be the small amounts of training I got from my military family, but I could sense a trap. I pretended to tie my shoe and when I glanced up she was gone. I leave and as I turn the corner she’s standing right there, and comes in for the craziest tongue make-out I’ve had in like FOREVER. It was great I mean we just stayed there on the wall for ten minutes until we heard someone coming. She gave me her number and I texted her saying hi this is James, her response was hurry back for another test I’ll give you the answer key if you let me inside the testing room and turn the lights off. I still haven’t responded. Help.

    • James,
      Hopefully this hasn’t reached you too late. Usually when a random stranger comes up to me it’s to hit me and not kiss me so good on you. Not too sure about this though. Tough call. When faced with your final decision, use parts of your body that aren’t between your legs to decide what to do.

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