Jimmie, As Per Usual

PROLOGUE:  This was the year, in June, that I turned 41.

As an aside, I’d like to say that 41 is boring.  It isn’t sexy at all and while I do have nine years left to get my sexy on according to my Auntie Anne, this is not an auspicious beginning.

Eons ago, before I moved to Nashville, I lived in a crappy placed called Alabama.  After living in Alabama for ten years, I decided it was time to get the heck up outta there, and began to search newspapers and online job boards for a job in a place called Anywhere-But-Alabama.  I scored interviews in places called Memphis, Atlanta and Nashville. We all know how that worked out, but not everyone knows the process I went through to get to Nashville.  I’m going to tell you about that.

It took three formal interviews for the company in which I landed to realize my value and offer me a position.  Right before I was given my offer letter, my interviewer dropped the f-bomb a minimum of six times.  In the interview before that, one of my interviewers forgot to comb his hair and had on a sweatshirt inside-out.  And in my first interview – oh law, what a story that was.

That interview process began with a spelling test, a math test and a grammar test.  In order to pass them, I had to score a 100 which was easy as they gave me a dictionary, a calculator and a thesaurus.  (I found out later I was one of only two who passed.  Unless you are a moron of the highest order or you don’t follow directions, there was no reason to not pass.) After the tests, I was asked a series of questions along the lines of:  if you could be any animal in the world, what would it be; if your work were a painting, what would it be titled; and describe the kind of tree you are.  I was stunned.  It was the strangest interview I ever had in my life.  I had gotten my last two jobs just by being nice and bubbly and so having to go through this rigmarole was new territory.  I chalked it up to big city ways, though, and soldiered on.

Halfway through the oddball questions, the interviewer smoothed her hair and said, “I’m sorry about my hair.  It usually wear it up, never down like this.  It must be getting on your nerves.”  She looked at me expectantly and right then I got it.  I was dealing with a narcissist of epic proportions and if I wanted this job, I had to play the game.

“Oh no,” I breathed.  “Your hair is lovely.”  She preened and we moved on.

To be fair, there were valid discussions in which I got to explain my work history and philosophy and since I was called back for second and third interviews, I reckon I made a good impression.  At the end of the first interview, though, my narcissist said, apropos of nothing, “I’m 41 but I know I don’t look it”, and she smoothed the skin on her face and showed me her nicotine-stained teeth.  We both sat there in silence for a moment, me trying to formulate the response that would get me hired and she waiting for my breath to stumble at her beauty.

I managed to choke out a believable “I never would have guessed!” even though I totally would have guessed and made it to the car before I guffawed aloud.  Oh, this place was going to be fun, I could tell.

Years later, my second job in Nashville fell apart because Boss ditched me for Kansas City and I landed the gig where I am now.  Recently I received that promotion I told you about and you should know that the promotion launched me into a recruiter position in which I get to conduct interviews.  And right after I became a recruiter, the position I had just vacated was opened up for interviews and Daisy, my lovely, lovely co-worker, applied for that position and I got to interview her.

My current supervisor, a woman who is the epitome of professionalism and good graces and never says things like “My hair MUST be getting on your nerves”, nor does she preen unnecessarily, had always done the interviews in house and was preparing me to interview Daisy.

“You have a list of questions for her?” MJ-Love asked.

“Yup,” I said, right before I spit out my gum.

“Professionalism is what we like to see, you know,” MJ-Love counseled.

“Yup, I got it.”

“You aren’t nervous at all about this?  You know the entire HR team will be sitting in with you and asking questions of our own, correct?”

I shrugged and said, “Naw, I’m good.”

“Okay,” she said.  “Let’s go get Daisy.” And off we marched.

As we were settling ourselves into the chairs in the conference room, I could tell Daisy was nervous.  I don’t know why as we all desperately wanted her to join our team and were terrified that she would change her mind.  MJ-Love said, “Jimmie?  Go ahead.”

I took a deep breath, grinned at Daisy with my minty-fresh teeth, smoothed my big, sexy hair, and to MJ-Love’s eternal horror said, “Daisy, I’m 41 but I know I don’t look it . . . .”

EPILOGUE:  Daisy was hired, and I was not fired, and MJ-Love has recovered nicely from her stroke, and we all lived happily ever after.

The end.

5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Madre
    Nov 13, 2013 @ 09:00:35

    You’ve got it going on, Girl !! One of the best yet for good chuckles !!


  2. Felix
    Nov 13, 2013 @ 11:50:05

    I agree with Madre !! I love this one too. You have the funniest stories and take me, and I am sure all of us, to the place where the actual events occurred. I mean, it was like I was right there beside you. Great writing! The last part made me LOL….. 🙂 LUV, YOU!


  3. Lynnette
    Nov 13, 2013 @ 12:56:21

    I guess I must have been the other one to pass the test, since I was hired by the narcissistic manager, too. I have a complete semester of college presentations on narcissistic in case you are interested. 🙂 Fun times!


  4. Aunt Anne
    Nov 14, 2013 @ 10:46:14

    You are good! The cat diary is a delight, too, but this one is worthy of my favorite New York Times satirist, Gail Collins. You won’t always agree with her politics, but do check her out for style.


  5. antonia
    Nov 15, 2013 @ 09:06:03

    LOLOL>>>> OH, how i needed the laugh you provided me this morning!!! 🙂


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