Venty like a Starbucks coffee.


First a little background. I’ve been driving a whole lot more lately in hopes to get my license this summer. This leads to another story of why I don’t have it yet. In short, no motivation.

And now for the long version. Some people get cars for their graduation or college graduation or get a car when they turn 16. I didn’t. Not bitter about that tho, seriously. But this just means, I am poor and can’t afford one myself. Each time I have the hopes of maybe getting one, something goes wrong, for instance my lay off in Dec. Therefore, whether I get my license or not, I’m still without transportation. Same thing either way = an unmotivated me.

Add to this non-motivation the fact that any effort I make involves being in a car with mother in tow. So let’s say my motivation level was at 0; now it’s plummeted into the ground.

Thing about my mother that results in a good 90% of our arguments is that she talks A LOT. Now, I know I do on occasion, and I have a lot of friends that do, but I swear this is really different. She is the most verbose person I have ever known; the kind of person that can’t answer a yes-or-no question in one word to save her life. Also the kind of person who, if allowed, will talk your ear off first thing in the morning, meaning 6 a.m. kind of early. And a good majority of what she has to say is about nothing. So for as long as I can remember, I’ve pointed these things out to her, for instance, don’t engage me in conversation about nothing early in the morning. After all these years, she just recently got it.

So as of recently I’ve been driving with Mom. After almost a year they finally got the little hooptie fixed. So I get to drive around in this casket on wheels with no AC and a front seat that’s left me with a bad back since I started driving it. So I prep myself before the first drive a few weeks ago. I try to tell her in the nicest way possible to not be obnoxious. Not in those words exactly. I explain it’s fine to tell me if I’m doing something wrong but I don’t want to talk about just nothing. It’ll just aggravate me and behind the wheel all cramped up and hot is the last place I want aggravation. So she gives me like a “hmmmf” kinda noise. Mind you, I have to explain this to her way in advance.

Sidenote: Strange how the golden rule doesn’t usually work in my house. The things I expect people to do to me seem to offend when I do it to them. Ex: If I’m talking and you’re not listening, please tell me so I can stop talking to no one. If I do that to Mom, she gets pissed.

Back to our story. So a few weeks ago, I start driving with her. Aside from the heat and the back cramps, it goes well. No disagreements. No verbal diarrhea. Nothing. So here I am thinking, this may actually work out. Weeks go by and she’s becoming the woman I know that I hate to drive with.

Here’s what happened yesterday that set me off. It was dim and raining lightly. I’m driving home from Bradford through Haverhill. (I forgot to mention that my little death mobile has headlights about as strong as a penlight.) My mother has bad night vision. Because of this, of course this must mean that I do too. I’m seeing just fine. The only problem that happens sometimes is that I can’t see the lines in the road ’cause they’re a bit faded, but I’m still on my half of the road. It’s raining lightly and she wants me to put on my wipers. I say, “No, because it’ll make things worse and I won’t be able to see.” It’s just sprinkling at this point. I quickly turn them on for a second to prove this and the windshield goes blurry ’cause there’s not enough rain. Oh and the wipers screech like nails on a chalkboard. So I’m like, “SEE?” and turn them off. After a little bit, it starts raining a little more but not like really raining. My mom is not happy that the wipers are not on to her satisfaction. I put them on, but really low so I could still see. (It’s nice to see when you’re driving at night.) All this time, she’s been dropping not-so-subtle hints about the wipers. “I don’t know how you can see.” “I still think you should turn them on higher.” “I always have them on higher when I’m driving.” “Hmmf, I still don’t know how you can see.” AHHHHHH ENOUGH!!

The more you’re irritated and picked on, the more mistakes you make (I almost took out a mailbox) which makes her think her argument is proven. And of course there’s no notice of how I drive fine when I’m not being badgered. I still remember when I was 16 and I just pulled over out of aggravation when she just wouldn’t leave me alone.

Today, I drove home from Bradford through Haverhill again. She likes to freak out when people cross in front of me even though they may not be anywhere near me and my foot is on the brake. She did that yesterday at Demoulas when a woman was crossing in the lot and I was a good distance from her with my foot on the brake and creeping up slowly. She’s about all the way crossed and Mom’s like, “She’s trying to cross!!” Anyway, today she’s not helping me drive at all. Just talking. “People get in accidents over here. I don’t know why. Blah blah blah….. “

Today wasn’t nearly as bad as yesterday but just irritating ’cause I was still chafing from yesterday. I’ve been planning all night yesterday and today to bring up the whole wiper thing and ask her to please leave me alone and let me drive as long as I’m driving well. But this is a task because everything offends her. This is a woman who can’t take constructive criticism. When I finally get home tonight, I think I’m going to drop it, but being rather miffed, I slightly overshot the driveway. Didn’t do anything wrong, just by a couple feet and had to cut the wheel tighter. She responds, “You overshot the driveway.” AHHHHHHH!!! THANK YOU, QUEEN OF OBVIOUS!!!

Then I park and just explain to her to talk a little less because it’s irritating. Of course she’s all offended and starts this whole thing. So I bring up the wiper thing and ask what’s the deal with that. She responds, “I couldn’t see.” Hello? I say, “Yeah, but I could.”

“I know, but I couldn’t.”
“What is more important? The driver or the passenger seeing?” (Here’s another thing. You ask her logical black & white questions and she doesn’t get it.)

She keeps responding with, “I don’t know how you could see.”

I repeat, “Would you rather see and have me not see?” to which she never answered. I must’ve repeated that a good 4 times. She says to drop it, which is usually the reply when she knows she has no other reply.

This results in one pissed of me. I got home and vented on the phone and got of the phone and vented on here. Fortunately, I actually have money now so I have the option to just pay for driving lessons from somewhere and seriously I’d rather spend the 20-something dollars to drive with some schmoe for an hour than lose my sanity and waste half an evening writing a book-length entry on LJ.

Excuse me while I vent

Ahhhhh!! So I went on the mother of all stupid interviews today. Again, I should’ve gone with my first inclination and not gone on the interview at all. It was way out in Lynn. That was the first problem. I had to cut out from the service group early to do this interview. I said in the morning, I hope I don’t get the job cause I really don’t want this one. I don’t want the job, but I was hoping for it to be a productive interview, a learning experience if you will, and was it ever. But of course not like I had expected.

Like my last dumb interview, I’m just going cause I already made the appointment and don’t want to stand her up after she had prepared for it. So I go. Tim and Arthur drop me off by Central Sq. Lynn so I can take the bus over to Chestnut Street about a mile or so away. I get lost, of course, trying to find the bus terminal. I find it and am on my way out to wherever this place is. I get there and I’m like 1/2 hour early. They accept me in early.

Now, it’s clear this woman is NOT prepared for this interview. She asks how much experience I’ve had. I say, “Around 5 years.” She’s like, “How can that be when you graduated in 2002?… Oh my, I can see I didn’t read your cover letter as thoroughly as I should have.” She continues to say, “I was looking for someone with a lot more experience.” It was clear, from that point, the interview was pretty much over. But she made a feeble attempt to drag its life on another couple of agonizing minutes. After about 10 seconds of silence, she says, “I… I don’t know what to say.” She must’ve uttered that a good 5 times throughout the course of this less-than-10-minute interview. I felt like I was watching a George Bush interview. Enough “um’s” and “uh’s” and stumbling words to make even George shake his head in disbelief. I kid you not. If anyone had seen clips of Bush’s interview with Diane Sawyer, I felt like I was reliving that. Yes, it’s an unrehearsed interview, but he should pretty much have guessed the questions that will be asked and prepared his answers in advance if he couldn’t improv well. In this woman’s case, even without the preparation, just spit out the boring default interview things people say.

Anyway, she then says, “Do you have your portfolio to show me?” I think to myself, “Why should I even bother?” but I say, “It’s online.” (This lady really didn’t read my resume.) Then she goes on to criticize the fact that I didn’t bring a print portfolio in. I tell her, one doesn’t exist because I canned it for the web portfolio. She asks how many interviews I’d been on to which I say, several. She says, “And none have expected a print portfolio?” Apparently, she didn’t expect me to say, “No, none of them have.”

“Uhm… uhh…”

“All places have expected a web portfolio from me. I just figured it’s a given to show that, and if prints are expected, it would be specified.”

“Well, I’m not here to argue about this. Let’s just see what you have online.”

I don’t know why I let this continue this long, but here is where things start to get stupid. Here is the point where I’m seeing that this woman is clearly not the brightest crayon in the box. She goes to my site and clicks over to the print section. First, she starts complaining that I have only four pieces there. I’ve learned that for a portfolio, print or web, you don’t want to put everything you’ve ever done and show like 50+ pieces. Just a little bit of everything will get across the idea of what kind of designer you are. Adding too many samples is a bad thing which I’ve been told a million times.

Next thing is I’ve had computer illiterates look at my site — people who have limited Internet skills and they have no problem navigating their way around the site. This woman had no idea what she was doing. She didn’t know to click the arrows and numbers at the bottom to shuffle around to different pages, etc. This was funny… she clicked on a piece which opened in a pop-up window. She didn’t know how to get back to the webpage. Then she tries to talk down to me and say, “How am I supposed to get back to your site?” as she tries to refresh the pop-up window. Side note: The only thing worse than being talked down to is when a stupid person talks down to you, cause when you try to point out that they’re stupid, they’re too clueless to get it.

“You don’t need to ‘get back’ because it’s still there. Close the pop-up. (DUH!) Have you been to this site before?”

“Uhm, yes I have.”

(Mmhmm, sure you have.)

After stumbling her way to one of my print samples, she stops and says, “Well, you can see why it would’ve helped if you had brought some print samples.”

(Oh my god. You’re not kidding, I can see why.)

“And… I really don’t know what else to say… (more awkward silence) Do you have any questions for me?”

“No.” (Yes. How the heck did YOU get this job?!”)

“Well, seeing as we need someone with more experience, it doesn’t make any sense to continue.”

(Thank you. Can I go now?)

“I’ll keep your resume incase we have any openings for a junior designer.”

(Like heck I’m coming back.)

“I’ll show you to the door.”

So this whole time I’m just dumb-founded. I have no idea what to say to this person who clearly did NOT prepare for this interview. Usually, when you interview, the interviewer has a copy of your res and cover letter out on his/her desk with notes as to what interested him/her about you, questions to ask, etc. She had no questions, nothing about anything. This whole interview depended on whether I had prints to show which makes it obvious to me that it didn’t matter about that at all. She was totally winging it. At least make it look like I didn’t waste my time coming out here. Ask the obvious questions about my previous jobs, what I liked, what I disliked, how I work in a team, etc. I mean, come on. You don’t even have to be imaginative about that. Those are the default questions and they couldn’t seem to come to her head. Oh, and she even said, more like thinking out loud as she scanned my res, “Well, I must’ve called you out here for a reason. Let’s see here…”

In addition to all this, don’t forget that it’s all the way out in Lynn. So I had to take a bus back to Central Sq. that took like 45 minutes to come. A couple buses passed that were out of service. The one I got on was loaded with loud middle school students coming back from some trip. The driver said it was all for the students but he’d do me a favor and give me a ride back. I get dropped off at Central Sq. to wait another 45+ minutes for the commuter rail to come to take me back to Boston so I can come to the lab and vent on the LJ.

The only good thing today was that it was warm. A rain storm would’ve capped off my day. Maybe next time.

Oh, I think I get it.

OK, so I’m getting the hang of it. I guess I’ll use this thing to vent. So yes, I’m still unemployed. Just when I thought I couldn’t climb higher in the loser polls, I just started getting my unemployment checks and deferred my other student loan. Yay me. I’m now an official bum.

So today I got up in the a.m. for a change because I had an interview at Kennison & Associates, a staffing firm. I went in fairly optimistic cause this one job I was shooting for looked like I was over-qualified. I spend all of 15 min. max at this interview just to be told my resume is “too light,” experience-wise. Lovely.

Not wanting to waste the day, I walk around town applying everywhere. Well, not everywhere. I’m trying to avoid places I know my friends frequent. I walked into Espresso Royale by NU the other day, ready to ask if they were hiring. I caught myself in mid-sentence and mentally dopeslapped myself for even considering it. I believe my request came out as, “Hi. Are you guys… um… serving tea today?”

Yes, I want my cake and eat it too. Or as Beavis said, “I want my cake and eat his too.”

Just to show you how desperate I’ve become, I walked over to apply at Children’s Hospital. No, not to work with children. I’d rather be burned alive. There’s a webbish job there. I wonder if a tolerance or even love of children is a requirement to this job.

Anyway, so this is what the Little brown live journal will consist of for a while: me being unemployed trying to become employed. Not too interesting, but right now, it’s all I got.