Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Interview Time

I had an interview today at a startup media company.

I walked in to my 2:00pm interview prepared and pretty confident that I was a shoe-in for the job.
I walked out feeling like I had just spent an hour having one of those conversations on the phone where you can hear your own voice echo back. But the echo was German. And no, I don’t speak German.
I had to steady myself in the elevator afterward, feeling like I was coming to after a black out. “Who was that in there?” I asked out loud.

I actually (genuinely) think that the reason it didn’t go so well is that I spent the first part of the day alone, not speaking to anyone.

God, that’s ironic.
I have no job, so I’m alone most of the day. Being alone means that I don’t talk to anyone (save a quick phone chat with The Mom and pleasantries with the guy at the hardware store), and don’t really get the vocal chords going or my brain exercised in the conversation department. Therefore, I walk into an interview and perform verbal diarrhea on the Co-Founder and Chief Creative Officer across the conference table from me.


Next time, I’m starting a lengthy and in-depth conversation with the guy at the hardware store about my experience developing strategic cross-platform marketing strategies. Whether he cares or not.

Funemployment Tip of the Day:
My flatmates have their crap they order online delivered to the house now knowing I’ll be home in the middle of the day to sign for it. I now charge them a nominal fee to deliver it to them from the deep abyss of my closet. Cha-ching!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Funemployment, Good (update)

I have tons of time on my hands and none simultaneously.
I feel identityless, but recognize that there is so much more to me than the brand on a business card.
I do not know what day of the week it is, much less the date.
I am one of those people who is out grocery shopping mid day, mid week.
I am funemployed*.

After a late night Conversation with some dear high school friends and a Facebook status that generated quite a bit of interest from others, I've decided to publicly chronicle my life as a jobless 20-something living in San Francisco.

I was recently laid off after two years in marketing and events at a San Francisco-based design and architecture magazine. My story is not unlike many others. During my time at the magazine, I held two positions, threw over 40 events, and created countless invaluable relationships with businesses and consumers for the company I worked for. Being laid off was like having my 2 years of work, time, and (seriously) blood, sweat and tears pulled out from underneath me while the magician dramatically swoops his arm up in the air indicating the ease with which he just pulled my foundation out from underneath me. *THWAP* “Your history here meant nothing! HA HA!”

I am now living on what little savings I was able to acquire over the past few years, my one month’s severance and that fantastic government program called “Unemployment”.

Although the term “funemployment” is (one would hope) largely self-explanatory, allow me to explain why I have chosen this particular compound word to describe my current employment status.
We begin with the more commonly used “Unemployment”
- Conjures up images (in this gal’s head, at least) of sad looking men in fedoras and long coats waiting for their bread ration in the freezing cold.
- When put in the context, “What does Louise do?” “She’s unemployed.” The sympathy and sadness dripping from the responder’s voice is palpable.
- It’s just gicky sounding for a 25 year old.
And now, “Fun”
- Woo hoo! (and not the Washington Mutual kind, more the roller coaster, dance floor kind.)
- Smiles.
- Candy.

When combined to form “funemployment” the following ensues:
- I flew to San Diego. On a Wednesday. At 11:50am.
- I spent one Friday (at least I think it was a Friday) sleeping in and picnicking on the beach with a cute boy.
- I'm fully caught up on episodes of both This American Life and Radio Lab.
- Instead of feeling as if I’m “living off the system”, I now make believe my unemployment checks come with a little note signed by the government and my former employer that say things like “You are totally worth this!” and “G’head and buy yourself something shiny from Crossroads this week.”

See?! Unemployment, bad.
Funemployment, good!

And before you get all “Wow, slacker much?!” let me assure you that I am very actively seeking employment (I have an interview this week, as a matter of fact), but in the interim, I’m gonna go buy myself something shiny.

*I cannot take full credit for the creation of this word. According to my flat mate, his newly laid off friend Becca is to thank.
Thanks, Becca!

(update) The creative, funemployed friend I mentioned above, is, in fact, named Dawn. Not Becca. And she's fabulous, fyi.
Thanks, Dawn!