Blogs Are Stupid

Doesn't anyone believe in Dear Diary anymore? What happened to the joy of putting actual pen to paper? And why does every ordinary Jane and John think they can write well enough to burden the world with their scribblings? It’s a mystery that badly needs solving. My first entry contains my thoughts about blogging and will set your expectations. The rest will probably be stream of consciousness garbage, much like you’ll find on any other blog. Perhaps we will both come away enlightened.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

So You Had A Bad Day

Yesterday, I did something that I haven't done in sixteen years.

I consider myself a pretty confident person. A strong person. I like to think of myself as a "tough nut", yannow? Fearless.

And still, it had me a lot more freaked out than I would have liked.

The thing? I went to apply for a job.

I spent the night beforehand writing a cover letter, gathering up relevant documents and making copies, and filling out the application that I downloaded from their website.

When I got to the part about previous employment, I was confronted by the fact that for the past 13 years, I have no defineable work history.

Have I worked? Shitchyea.

I have worked harder than at any job I have ever held.

I have been chauffer, social secretary, chef and menu planner, household manager, manual laborer and general handyman, laundress, medical care coordinator, risk management specialist and disaster recovery professional.

But none of that matters.

So I went online to get the address and phone number of my former employer (What? It's been THIRTEEN years.), only to find that the Branch agency of the National Financial Services company I worked for had closed. Ten years ago.

Prior to that I worked at a rather high profile law firm. My employment there only lasted six months and culminated in a little incident wherein I told the head partner that he was an insufferable ass and that he could take his docket and shove it right up his brief.

Then I walked out and never came back. I was so pissed off that I even left my insulated lunch bag and my favorite coffee mug behind.

Say, that reminds me of a little piece of wisdom I could pass along here. If you're ever tempted to apply for unemployment benefits from a law firm that specializes in employment and labor law...that would be a monumental waste of time.

Apparently, they don't consider asstastic bosses adquate reason for granting benefits, although, kindly, the attorney they sent to represent the firm at the mediation did tell me he's wanted to say that very thing to the head partner for 20 years.

So anyway, I hesitated to use them as a reference.

I tracked down a few of the agents I had worked with at the agency. They function as independant contractors, but are listed as affiliates in company related directories and any public relations material.

I selected a few I had been somewhat chummy with and hoped they would remember me.

I ran to Target for pantyhose. I haven't worn pantyhose in YEARS, literally, and I had no idea what size I needed. I took an educated guess based on the ubiquitous but entirely fallacious size chart on the back of the package.

I dragged a skirt out the depths of my closet, dusted off some high heeled boots I bought on clearance last season and then wore once because they hurt my feet, and laundered my best twinset.

Yes, I own a twinset. You wanna make something of it?

The following morning I had an ominous premonition of what my future could be like when I tried to get both boys and myself ready to head out the door.

At one point, I was standing in the kitchen in my very mom like underwear, with concealer ringing my eyes and and a barrel brush tangled in my hair, screeching at both of them to turn off the television and go brush their teeth.

They looked at one another, and Pre-Pubescent One cocked one brow at Diminutive One. WTF? Diminutive One shrugged almost impreceptibly in response. Beats me bro. Pre-Pubescent One inclined his head sideways. We should probably do it before her head explodes or something. Diminutive One gave a single nod. I'm with you Dude.

"Okay Mom, chill, we're going. Just ummm, go get dressed. Everything is cool."

Shortly after that I discovered that the pantyhose I bought were in fact, one size too small. No matter how vigorously I did the pantyhose dance, they were not going to clear my upper thigh bulges. I was left with about an inch of nylon suspended tautly between my legs. These babies would be no defense against chub rub, but they would have to do.

My lack of foresight in the matter of ill fitting panytyhose would come to bear later in the day. But for now, it seemed the only real problem was my somewhat shortened stride. Between the heels and the nylon holding my thighs in a stranglehold, I was forced to mince. I told myself it was ladylike and thought no more about it.

Miraculously, I got Pre-Pubescent One to school and Diminutive One to the doctor on time. After I dropped Diminutive One off at school, I headed to the library to turn in my applications. I was going to two different branches, each one having a different position available.

The woman at the front desk was very friendly. She took my application and explained that the manager wasn't in at presesnt, but she would make sure she got the application.

"Okay, thank you. Could you just tell her that there is documentation attached that should serve as proof of employment at my last job?? It's been thirteen years, you see and the branch has closed and I realized I had nobody to verify employment and so I attached those certificates to prove that I worked there. And then I realized that they're in my maiden name? So I also attached a copy of my marriage certificate. I couldn't find my social security card, so I attached a copy of my driver's license as well. Do you think that will be adequate?"

She looked at me kindly.

"Hon, I know how you feel. I was so terrified when I went back to work after staying home with my kids. But I'm sure everything is in order. And I'll tell her how nice you look."

It was then that the sausage casing holding my belly flab in stasis flipped over with an audible snap and rolled down to mid thigh with terrifying swiftness. I stood there with a smile frozen on my face, wondering if I could get to the bathroom before they rolled clear down to my boot tops.

"Er, yes, thank you." I said tersely.

I pranced to the bathroom as inconspicuously as I could, clenching my thighs together in a desperate attempt to trap the nylon between them and prevent it from descending further, and with it, my dignity.

Alas, lady luck had decided to abandon me. As I approached, I saw that a bright yellow ribbon which said "Closed for maintenance" had been hung accross the doorframe.

I said a very bad word and seriously considered going into the men's room. There weren't a great many men in the library that I had noticed, and it would only take a moment for me to tear the wretched garment off my person. But, I reasoned, it wouldn't do for a potential employee to be found in the men's room disrobing.

So I hobbled to my car, where I then faced the dilemma of how to bend over and remove my boots without baring my behind, which was now covered only by my skirt and my threadbare cotton underpants, to the patrons of the neighboring YMCA who cycled and strode vigorously in front of an enormous window, providing a panoramic view of yours truly in all her humiliation.

I decided it would be best dealt with in the privacy of my own home, so I simply slid into the van and closed the door with a sigh of relief.

Turns out that decision was not well thought out either.

As I drove, the pantyhose crept ever lower, until they were just below my knees. They would have rolled all the way to my ankles if I hadn't been wearing boots. It's very difficult to drive when one's lower legs are bound together by industrial stength nylon.

In a herky jerky fashion, I sallied forth, hoping like hell I wouldn't get stopped and asked to get out of the car for a sobriety test. "Please Officer, could I remove my pantyhose first?"

I could just imagine the guffaws as the officer recounted the story for his squadmates later on.

"Whadjou tell her Carl? Why Certainly ma'am, but I have to advise you that removing your pantyhose is not likely to lower your blood alcholol level."?

"No, no...he said, Ma'am, it's against policy for an officer of the law to accept sexual favors."

"HA! Carl should be so lucky. He ain't likely to get an offer like that before he retires!!"


Luckily, I made it home without further incident.

When I at last made it into the house, I sat down on the floor just inside the front door like a kindergartener in the coat room, and pulled off my boots. Then I extricated myself from the diabolical pantyhose prison in which I had unwittingly placed myself. I plucked the hateful things off the floor and stuffed them savagely into the garbage can.

I was done in. turns out that both positions had already been filled. But that's okay. I took the hardest step of putting myself out there again. It was nervewracking, but it also felt good.

I can still do it. And I will find something.


  • At 4:50 PM, Blogger thailandchani said…

    Oh my gosh! That is one of the funniest posts I've read in a really long time!

    I've been retired for three years now and can't imagine having to go through that again.

    My hat's off to you. Without a doubt!

  • At 4:56 PM, Blogger email said…

    That made me laugh so hard I cried. Good luck in the job search, but first go get yourself the next size up in pantyhose. :)

  • At 5:05 PM, Blogger flutter said…

    Oh my god you are funny. You can and you will find something and you will be great.

  • At 5:18 PM, Blogger Jess said…

    That sentence about prancing inconspicuously to the bathroom is hilarious. But on a more serious note, I'm sure you'll find something great. It's good you got the ball rolling. Good luck.

  • At 5:18 PM, Blogger Clara said…

    That was so funny, definitely a laugh out loud post. I can just imagine that happening to me if/when I decide to go back to work. I stumbled across your blog last night, and I think you write really well. Thanks for the laugh! Keep us posted. I'd like to know what does a SAHM write on a resume, that would be a tough one.

  • At 5:59 PM, Blogger Chicky Chicky Baby said…

    Oh man, I'm rolling over here. I'm so sorry the positions were already filled but that was HIGH-larious.

  • At 6:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Har! I can just imagine it! But you did it, and that's a start--now you know the right size and you've pulled your resume together, so you can do it again with more panache. And less nylon stranglage!

  • At 6:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    This made my day! After 20 years working I am looking at the possibility of redundancy and being back on the job market at 51. I was feeling sorry for my self and wondering how I would cope when I read about your adventures! Good luck.. I am sure we will both eventually find the perfect jobs!
    Kay (New Zealand)

  • At 6:34 PM, Blogger Amy Y said…

    Good for you! The hard part is over! Hopefully next time will go smoother... Very proud of you and thanks for the giggle. :)

  • At 7:34 PM, Blogger Carol said…

    You 'n' me BOTH, m'dear!! When I was interviewing for "my" staff last year, there were two applicants who had been home with kids for years. They both had great experience previously. I pulled those applications and wanted to interview them. The program director vetoed me. I was furious! Wish for a MOM to be the decision maker.

  • At 8:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Oh my B.A., I was laughing out loud and my son now thinks I'm nuts! I could just picture the whole thing (using my town library as the setting) and I still have a smile on my face. You are a master story-teller, but I gotta tell you, you have a lot of great stories to tell!

  • At 8:41 PM, Blogger Bea said…

    That reminds me of that commercial with the woman who shimmies out of her pantyhose in front of a big mirror, then walks into the boardroom - and sees that it's a one-way window, and all the assembled board members just saw her little manoever perfectly. Then she says something really witty (I forget what). I have no idea what it was selling, but it was a good commercial.

  • At 9:17 PM, Blogger Tela said…

    I very rarely wear pantyhose, but when I do need 'em, I always buy them at least two sizes larger than I need. For exactly the reason you mentioned.

    Good luck in your job search! I'm sure you'll find something soon. And I promise, if I have any writing gigs coming up soon, I'll send 'em your way. (Remember me?) And you won't even have to wear pantyhose.

  • At 9:28 PM, Blogger painted maypole said…

    i know it sucked for you, but that was some funny reading! pantyhose are evil. EVIL.

    And it can only get better, right?

  • At 9:51 PM, Blogger Terri said…

    Hahaha! You're too funny! By the end of the post I was inwardly cheering for you and disappointed that the positions had been filled, but as you said, you'll find something. Glad your confidence is up despite the pantyhose incident.

  • At 10:21 PM, Blogger Girlplustwo said…

    oh wow...this is hilarious. it may not have been in the moment but it felt like i was right there with you.

    and GOOD for YOU. you are going to find something perfect. and they'll be lucky to have you.

  • At 11:53 PM, Blogger Jammie J. said…

    One step at a time... one step at a time. Pantyhose restricted or not, it was one step.

  • At 12:40 AM, Blogger Cathy, Amy and Kristina said…

    ...still howling...!

    I had a similar experience with thigh-highs. Remember those?

    They slithered down my legs, one at a time, and, despite all my crouching and frantic grabbing, those two pieces of rebellious nylon slid all the way to my ankles, where they flapped jauntily over my pumps.

    My dad, who was waiting in the car to take me to lunch, saw my hose escape. By the time I slunk into the car, he was crouched over the steering wheel, laughing, gasping, tears running down his cheeks.

    So sistah, I totally know what you just went through.

  • At 3:40 AM, Blogger Polgara said…

    I laughed and laughed because you remind me of me and i havent had my children yet!
    God help me in about fifteen years lol

  • At 3:42 AM, Blogger Kathryn in NZ said…

    Oodles of vibes coming your way, and may your sense of the ridiculous never go the way of your pantyhose (ghastly things).

  • At 8:59 AM, Blogger Avalon said…

    Yes, you will find something. Mainly because you have the smarts AND the balls to get yourself out there. One piece of advice: next time wear a pantsuit!

  • At 10:53 AM, Blogger Angela said…

    what a stressful day.
    But it was the first step
    good luck

  • At 11:32 AM, Blogger Namito said…

    oh, grrlfriend, you are so unstopably fabulous...

    Congratulations on taking the first big step...or mince.

    Whatever. I hate pantyhose too.

  • At 12:35 PM, Blogger sheilah said…

    HAHAHAHA!! You made me laugh out loud at work!

    If it makes you feel any better (probably not), I hate looking for a job too.

  • At 12:56 PM, Blogger Foofa said…

    I am sure you will find something. You would be surprised how much weight a cover letter actually carries and with your writing skills I am sure you have truly conveyed how much you want the jobs. As someone who teaches a workshop on employment skills (although for younger people) if you have any questions I would be more than happy to help.

  • At 2:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Man, that was some funny stuff. Pantyhose are a prison, whether they fit right or not.

    And I'm totally stealing "chub rub" for my own use. That's the biggest reason I wear pants.

    The strange thing is that I just bought a pair of tights to go with a skirt I bought. I couldn't find maternity tights anywhere, so I just bought the biggest size I could find in the regular sizes. I tried to get them on the other morning before work, and it decidedly didn't work. I briefly considered doing what you did, and just making do, but my comfortable, sweats-wearing side told me I'd be shedding them after a couple hours and then I'd be in trouble for not adhering to our strict dress code.

    Thank you for this glimpse into what it was I really avoided going through.

    You'll find something. Any employer worth their bottom line would be lucky to have you.

  • At 3:48 PM, Blogger Maureen Fitzgerald said…

    I am dying laughing over here. I know just how you feel - well, not JUST, I was only out of the game for three years, but it felt like thirteen when I went for that first interview!

    Good luck - something will come along for you!!

  • At 8:20 PM, Blogger Unknown said…

    I'm in pain now through laughing.

    Good on you for going for the job though.

    If you fancy moving to New Zealand there's almost certainly a job going at my new employer. Data entry, telephone and anything else that needs doing.

    You don't fancy the move? Why does that not surprise me. :D

  • At 8:20 PM, Blogger Jen said…

    This is exactly how I picture my first day back. LMAO. You are hysterical. Love the woman at the library. Just what you'd want to hear if you weren't distracted with your stockings rolling down!

  • At 10:02 PM, Blogger Tania said…

    Hilarious! It's probably a glimpse into my own future in another ten years or so.

  • At 9:04 PM, Blogger Ruth Dynamite said…

    Good for YOU! Awesome. There's a whole wide world waiting for hilarious, talented you.


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