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June, 2012

  1. The Ups and Downs of Unemployment

    June 30, 2012 by Lady Unemployed

    Alright, so I know I’ve been a bad blogger. Rule # 1 for the Blogosphere is to not drop off the face of the planet without notice.

    And this week has been one hell of a roller coaster.

    Just yesterday I prepared in my head and extremely cynical posts about how much I hate being unemployed and how I’ll probably never work again.

    And on top of that, on my way home yesterday I realized that the unemployment department sent me yet another form to respond to and how I need to report my activities since being unemployed. Basically, they just wanted me to give over a quart of blood and promise my future first born child.

    So, yesterday, my mood was like this:

    Crying

    This is me yesterday.

     

    And I woke up so stressed and freaking out. I wanted to just to pout, cry and throw a fit.  I also worried a lot too. I kept worrying that I would have to pay back my unemployment checks for some reason and maybe I’d be put in jail…

    Meanwhile my mom kept trying to convince me that I have nothing to worry about and that I had done nothing wrong.

    But still.

    I wondered.

    Prisoner 625385 Mugshot

    My worst fear – me behind bars. Except I hope I pose this well for my mug shot.

    And so with all of that going through my mind, I did the deed

    I called the unemployment department and expected to get this person on the phone, of course —

     

    Cave troll as corporate bully

    The person from the unemployment department (well, what I expected).

    And when I called, the issue wasn’t so bad after all.

    I was shocked! I was on the phone less than a half hour (much better than the last time).  And the overall experience was pleasant. I’m actually not in fear anymore.

    Now, about the job prospects.

    I have an interview on Monday! I’m really excited. The last job I talked about didn’t pan out, tragically (no, no interesting post for that one…sigh)  And I feel like the interview I have Monday will turn into…gasp…an actual job.

    So this week was a major roller coaster for me, as you can tell. My ups and downs. And now I feel like this –

    Happy 042

    Yay! Happy!

    And also, like this –

    mishima:alguna cosa em diu que sí

    I need a nap.

    Have a great weekend everyone! And next week I’ll be back posting on Tuesday and Thursday as usual! Also, let me know how things are going in your lives as well, I want to know!


  2. Does The Unemployment Department Scare The Hell Out of Anyone Else?

    June 21, 2012 by Lady Unemployed


    So today I spent an hour (!!) on the phone with the unemployment department to straighten out an issue that came up after I reported earnings I received for a sponsored blog post (not on this on; on another blog I have under my real name).

    Wow.

    Seriously the unemployment department scares the hell out of me.

    This whole situation reminded me of the time in 4th grade when I didn’t want the Principal’s daughter to play with me and my friends. What a HUGE deal that became!

    This situation was similar.

    I expected the FBI and CIA to come after me or something.

    It got straightened out, except for a weird moment when they asked if I worked for a company I’ve never heard of before. That scares me.

    So, now I’m a little worried about follow up letters from them about this mysterious company. And now I have a creepy feeling someone is watching me. You know that big brother’s watching deal?

    Yup.

    I’m feeling that.

    Aside from all of that, I have an interview this Monday! I am so excited about this! This is the job I really want. Like, really.


  3. I Shouldn’t Try Online Dating (And This Is Why)

    June 19, 2012 by Lady Unemployed

    Guy I Wrote to From Craigslist

    One day while looking on Craigslist for a job, I wandered into the personal ads. Don’t ask me why. I tried online dating a few years ago and it just wasn’t for me. And really, the last thing I should be doing right now is “applying” to men on the internet for a date. Because online dating truly is the equivalent to online job seeking – you are trying to present yourself in a positive way to someone you barely know.

    Anyways, right or wrong, I did. I wrote to a guy that seemed pretty reasonable. While he didn’t have a picture, he described himself as being 6’2 (a point for him, because I’m  5’9ish), he works out, and is a producer for a small time film company he created with his friends. Plus he described himself as having a dark sense of humor. Definitely a plus. That’s my humor.

    And then he added in the post, “Please don’t write to me with a link to a website where I have to sign up to speak with you.”

    So, I wrote him. Remember that dark humor thing? Well, keep that in mind.

    In the beginning of my email to him, I say, “Wow, finally a normal guy. In order to speak with me further, click the following link to sign up for the following website.”

    A few spaces down I add ,”Just kidding! I couldn’t resist startng out that way…”

    And so I went to describe myself as I usually would.

    A couple of days later, I get this response, “Same format 90% of those other emails have. Stop writing me. I’m not writing back. F*ck off.”

    Wow…

    Okay, this is why I’m not doing the online dating thing.

    And by the way, what happened to the good ole fashioned dark humor thing? I thought he would have thought that was funny!

    So, lesson learned. From now on, just online job seeking for me.

    As for this online angry guy, well, maybe he should take off the dark humor description. It’s a tad misleading.


  4. Job Seekers Are A Territorial Bunch

    June 14, 2012 by Lady Unemployed

    The B*tch from the Bookstore

    If I’m not in  my unemployment coffee shop, I’m in the bookstore right next door. This bookstore has the usual crowd including the elderly, moms with little children, business people who I suspect are looking for work, and teenagers.

    Well, last week my brother and I went to the bookstore in the afternoon and I looked for a usual spot where there are outlets for me to plug in my laptop. There are only three spots in the bookstore to access outlets and we went to a table that was available near one of those outlets. Sitting behind me was a business woman on her laptop. I reach around to plug in my computer and this is what I saw —

    The used up outlet I saw

    I followed the cord and saw that this business woman had taken up both outlets with her laptop cord and her cell phone charger. O-kay.

    Politely, I ask, “Would you mind unplugging one of those so I can plug in my computer?”

    As if I just asked her to hand me her laptop so I could use her personal computer myself, she says in a tone that the entire bookstore you can hear, “No! No…no. No, I’m not going to do that. No.” She sticks out her arm and points to a man sitting by one of the other outlets in the bookstore. “There’s one right over there you can use.”

    Well, just as she says that this other man reaches for his cell phone charger and I watch as he takes up both of the outlets near him.

    Across from me, my brother gives me a look that says what I’m thinking, “What a b*tch!” He told me later that I whispered under my breath, “Bitch.” But I don’t remember that.

    So, I do remember telling my brother in my own “loud enough for the bookstore to hear” tone, “You know I’ve had to charge my own cell phone before while using my laptop and instead of using both outlets, I just charge my cell with my computer.”

    Nothing else was said from the bookstore b*tch behind me. Twenty minutes later I get a phone call from my mom asking me to call the cable company and I got distracted and had to leave the area to complete the call.

    Thirty minutes later, I returned and the area had gotten even more crowded. I let go of the moment and my brother and I went to a different section of the bookstore.

    I felt a little guilty later, because of my outburst to the lady the second time. When I told my mom about the incident she told me that the lady probably had no idea how to charge her cell phone with her laptop. And that might be the case, but you know what I learned from all this?

    Job seekers are a territorial, aggressive, and sometimes downright b*tchy/assh*lish bunch.

     


  5. A Week Without a Phone Call

    June 12, 2012 by Lady Unemployed

    Telephone

    The enemy

     
    Ladies and Gentleman, meet the enemy.
     
    The telephone.
     
    Also, email.
     
    But mostly – the telephone.
     
    And another week has gone by without receiving one. phone. call. Not one.
     
    How is that possible? At this point, I’m certain I’ve sent out nearly 100 resumes. Or at least, I’m pretty close. And it’s getting to that point where I’m kind of freaking out. I’ve never been out of work this long. Four months? At the most it’s been two months. But never this long.
     
    So, what does my week look like without a phone call?
     
    Well, let’s take a look. Here is a play-by-play layout of Monday through Friday, waiting for my phone call.
     
    Monday
     
    “I’m feeling really good! I’m certain I’ll get a call this week. Probably have an interview by Friday, maybe even start my new job by next Monday.”
     
    Overall Feeling: positive, hopeful
     
    Tuesday
     
    “That’s okay. No one really calls on a Monday anyways. Employers probably like to wait on a Tuesday, because…they just do. Yup, I’m definitely going to get a call today.”
     
    Overall Feeling: somewhat positive, hope wavering
     
    Wednesday
     
    “I wonder if they get my emails? I should probably start a new email account.” (opens up 15th email account) “…There at least I know they will get my email. I wonder if I should start listing a different number, though. Maybe I’m not getting the calls that do come in. Oh well, I’m certain I’ll get one by tomorrow. Someone is bound to call.”
     
    Overall Feeling: positivity nearly gone, hope definitely fading, paranoia increasing drastically
     
    Thursday
     
    “What if I never get a job again? Is that possible? I read online people are sometimes unemployed for years. How does that happen? That won’t happen to me. Will it? It can’t happen to me. No, it won’t happen to me.  Can it happen to me? Maybe I should change my number. Someone probably hacked into the phone line and are preventing calls from coming in. I should definitelychangemynumberormaybeIshouldn’tbecausewhatwillthe othersdothathavetheothernumberand….” (and so on, and so on)
     
    Overall Feeling: positivity gone, hope definitely gone, paranoia through the roof, temper increasing
     
    Friday
     
    “…………………………………………………………………Oh my God, I’ll never work again.”
     
    Overall Feeling: panicked, paranoid, and a short fuse. All signs point to stay the hell away from me.
     
     
     

  6. Unemployed – The Thing Which Must Not Be Named

    June 7, 2012 by Lady Unemployed

    Voldemort should see a dentist

    If there was a physical embodiment of unemployment, it would look like this.

    Last week, a couple of interesting things happened.  First, I was at the cash register for my unemployment coffee shop and I placed my order.  The barista asked me, “How is your day?”

    Quick side note: I’m a talker in coffee shops. The coffee shops I’m a regular at probably know more about me than a person should in that type of setting. 

    I reply, “Good. I’m still unemployed.”

    Another quick side note: They already know that I don’t have a job. This is not new to them.

    Instead of getting a look of sympathy and a remark of encouragement, the guy looks at me like I just told him that I’m in love with him and want to have his baby. He scoffs at my insanity and gives me the total for my drink.

    I pay and let the awkwardness pass and continue on about my day. No big deal right?

     And then my mom and I go get our hair done during that same week. It’s a beautiful Friday afternoon and I’m feeling pretty good for the most part. We go into the salon and are seen promptly, even though we don’t have appointments. I go to my beautician while my mom goes to hers. These beauticians happen to be on two sides of the salon.

    So, unlike my attitude at coffee shops, I’m not usually a talker at a salon. This time though I decided to do something different and chat up the lady cutting my hair.  We talk about lots of things. I mention I’m looking for a job (no look of insanity there) and got laid of in February. She mentions she is in school to get her degree. I talk about my dream of being a writer. She talks about hers (what are the odds of meeting a fellow writer?).

    We near the end of my haircut and my hair is still wet. She pauses and asks me, “Do you want your hair blow dried? It’s about 25 extra bucks. I figured I’d ask since…” She drops her voice. “…you’re unemployed.”

    I act as if she didn’t talk about my joblessness like it’s a politically incorrect statement. “That’s fne. My mom is treating me.” (Thanks mom, by the way.)

    She laughs it off and we continue talking.  The haircut is complete and I join back together with my mom and we finish the day off by purchasing some very cute, and very inexpensive, flip-flops.

    With these two stories described in completion, did you recognize their commonality?

    I’m beginning to realize that unemployment is beginning to be seen as a politically incorrect statement. Being out of a job is now “the-thing-which-must-not-be-named.” It’s even in the news too. It’s better to have a job and be looking for one, than not have a job and be looking for one.  Employers are more likely to hire you if you do have a job. Meanwhile, our unemployment rate continues to skyrocket.

    I am not unemployed because I want to be. Trust me. This isn’t fun. I want a job. But if we continue acting like that it’s somehow the unemployed person’s fault or that they should be embarrassed by it like a wart on the nose, than the problem will never be fixed.

    Meanwhile, maybe my current job title shouldn’t be blank. Maybe I’ll just describe myself as being an underpaid blogger with a growing chip on her shoulder. 



  7. The Creep from My Unemployment Coffee Shop

    June 5, 2012 by Lady Unemployed

    Portrait Of A Vampire

    The coffee shop creeper looked something like this.

    I think that every unemployed person has a coffee shop they go to regularly. My unemployment coffee shop is near the local mall and near a highly trafficked office building. This means that I have to get there pretty early, otherwise I am left with the straggler seats that have no nearby outlets and have to seek out jobs on my cell phone while stalking the good seats that are taken within seconds. The nice thing is that for the most part, I run into very few freaks.

    Until recently, of course.

    To set the stage, if I have the “good seats” in the coffee shop, I am usually lost in thought and whatever activity I am doing at the moment. Plus, I balance my time between my ever-crashing laptop and my cell phone. As a result, I have the tendency to not focus on the people around me and who is sitting near me.

    So one day, last Tuesday to be exact, there I was, surfing the internet for jobs and looking on my cell phone. Probably Twitter or something like that. This went on for about an hour or so. Out of the corner of my eye, I think I see a flash of a blue sweatshirt. I look up and I see someone walking away from the area I’m sitting in. I assume it’s a fellow coffee shopper and I ignore their presence.

    You know what I learned? You can tell when someone is staring at you.

    Because about a half hour later, I look up from my Twitter fog and I see the blue sweatshirt guy sitting across from me. Usually not a big deal, but the guy is looking right at me. I get this rush of…fear, I guess. Or maybe not fear, that sounds a little exagerrated. But whatever I’m feeling, I know it’s time to move. Especially becaues the guy is alternating between stroking his nasty goatee and picking his nose. Stroking. Picking. And staring. At me. I decided not to stick around to watch hand to move south.

    I pack up my stuff and I decide to take root in the bookstore next door. Not one of my favorite places to lurk, because I get this impression the workers don’t like me coming in there all that often. I think it has something to do with the fact that I don’t buy anything. Too bad, I say. They have free wi-fi for a reason, I figure.

    And I especially don’t care at this particular moment because I just want away from the coffee shop weirdo.

    Inside the bookstore, I take my seat at one of the tables and continue my job search. I’m still feeling a little freaked out about the coffee shop weirdo. Then, twenty minutes after I sit down, I get a text from my mom to meet her for lunch (she works nearby). Relieved for the distraction, I pack up my stuff and exit the bookstore. I take a right and go past the coffee shop and look in.

    The weirdo is gone.

    People, he only sat down at that spot because of me! And those were the “good seats,” by the way. You don’t leave those unless you have to. Or had no purpose sitting there in the first place. Or just sat down at those seats to stare at someone so long they get freaked out and leave.

    So, that’s it. I am not sure I can go back to that coffee shop again. I refuse to run into this guy. Or I will have to arm myself better. I must keep my wits about me.

    Or maybe I just need to get a job.