Stop the roller coaster: I want to get off.
Today has been quite the eventful day. I got a rejection e-mail, almost immediately followed by a phone call to set up an interview next week.
I was even more surprised by this rejection than I was by the one I endured a couple of weeks ago, from a major media company. I would have bet a paycheck (if I had one to bet) that I was at least going back for a second interview.
This job was with a city agency, and it was one of the more interesting interviews I’ve had. The woman I met with, who would have been my boss, did something people don’t usually do while interviewing potential employees: She mentioned quite a few pitfalls of the job, among them the red tape you’d expect with any government job and the fact that they’d been fighting for months to remedy a subpar Internet connection (kind of important for an Internet job, don’t you think?). But I stayed focused and positive (which isn’t the easiest thing for me, as anyone who has read this blog probably figured out already) and assured her that I’ve worked through similar problems and didn’t see any of them as an issue.
I really thought I nailed this interview, and the rejection e-mail definitely threw me for a loop. I’m generally pretty good about evaluating how an interview went, and I was almost positive I’d get second interviews with both the major media company and this job. I can’t help but wonder why that didn’t happen.
I guess part of it is that with so many people getting laid off every day, the competition is much tougher than in “normal” times. It’s a lot easier to compete with 10 people than with 200.
Another thing that probably isn’t helping is the fact that I’m a white male. Disclaimer: I am not racist, and I support programs that help minorities and women find work, so spare me your venom in my comments section. But it’s hard to ignore the idea that if the choice comes down to myself or a minority/female, the other person may get the nod for diversity purposes. Maybe that already happened, and maybe it didn’t. I’ll never know. But it’s a strong possibility.
The good news is that while I was sitting at my PC digesting the rejection e-mail, the phone rang, and I will have my first interview in nearly four weeks next Wednesday morning, for an Internet and e-mail marketing firm in the Wall Street area.
It will actually be a welcome inconvenience to break out the jacket and tie again, because I despise getting dressed up but, obviously, it’s a necessary evil for job interviews.
I will also finally shave. I haven’t shaved since my last job interview, a little more than three weeks ago, and I’m really starting to look like Tom Hanks’ character in Cast Away. Another few days and I might have painted a face on one of my old softballs and started talking to it and calling it “Clincher.” As it is, I’ve been talking to the cats way too much.
Yesterday marked six weeks of unemployment and counting. This sucks.