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Year of Living Dangerously – Week 4

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I can’t believe this is my 4th week of unemployment!  Time is really flying by and I’ve gotten over my slight depression.  I am managing to fill my days and I haven’t really even started on my bucket list yet.  This past week I got sick.  I NEVER get sick, so this was not a welcome development.  I even had a fever which really isn’t fun.  The good part of all this was weight loss (no appetite) and the bad part was that I didn’t leave my apartment for 4 days.  As a result I didn’t accomplish much.  I even had to cancel my appointment for head shots.  I guess my career in acting will have to wait a bit.

While I was sitting around sick, I got 3 calls for telephone interviews!  I took them all.  Of course I’m not sure what impression I left them with but in my haze, I thought I did halfway decently.  Maybe the fever thing works!  I have to ask…what is with people who just call you up out of the blue and say ‘ Do you have a minute to talk?’  Is that fair?  From what I’ve read about interviewing, when this happens you should tell them you are busy and will call them back at a specific time.  This way you can get yourself together and look up the actual job you applied for.  Since I had a fever and was a little delirious, I didn’t think to do this.  I guess I will see how all this works out.  I’m not sure I’m quite ready to go back to work, but I don’t want to turn down any opportunity to interview at this point.  Whether it works out or not, it is always good practice.  The last time I was unemployed I really didn’t hit my stride in interviewing until about 2 months into it.  By the end I was really on a roll and starting to like talking to people….then I got my job and my interviewing skills got rusty again.

I continued to go out with friends during the past week  and while out one night, my friend and I ran into two guys who had been drinking all afternoon.  They were celebrating their mutual birthdays at lunch and just continued on after that.  One was pretty incoherant and could barely speak.  I’m assuming it was the drinking and not that he was a little off.  He works on Wall street and you have to have a small amount of intelligence to do that, so I figured he was hammered.  He kept wanting to fist bump me ala Barack and Michele.  It got quite annoying by the 50th time.  The other guy could actually speak and was talking to us.  He was laid off 6 months ago and it doesn’t appear from the conversation that he has been able to get over it.  He is one of those guys who worked on Wall Street his whole career and was always successful.  He can’t quite believe one of his beloved financial institutions didn’t value his contributions enough to keep him.  When he got the word, he took the summer off and golfed (of course!).  He figured one of his ‘good friends’ would get him back in some place else.  Apparently, it hasn’t worked out that way so he is a little discouraged.  When he found out that I had been in HR, he decided that he needed to find out from me just what reasoning HR uses when they choose people to lay off.  Frankly I was out having a cocktail with a friend and this was the last thing I wanted to discuss, but he was persistant.  I felt a little bad for him so I told him it had nothing to do with him and everything to do with the bottom line for the company.  The whole conversation was a little pathetic.  This is a man who figured that if he did a good job, he would be employed ‘on the street’ as long as he wanted to be.  Perhaps this was true 20 years ago but not today.

This week I’ll be doing things that I needed to do last week but was sick.  I have medical appointments and have to get all my benefits straightened out.  I thought I had done this but my last company’s COBRA vendor is pretty lousy so nothing goes smoothly.  I also have an actual face to face interview.  It will be nice to actually see someone’s reaction when I answer a question.  I also have an appointment with the Employment Office in Manhattan.  That should be interesting.  More on that next week.  Have a good one!

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