Job Hunting Adventures

She gets up in the morning with the peculiarity laziness of winter mornings, she smiles, not because she is happy, but because today, finally today, there is a promising event ahead. She spends more than two minutes getting dressed and almost ten getting ready. Today is a big day! She has breakfast and even forgets her yogurt with muesli — this event must be really important for her to have forgotten her yogurt with muesli.

She enters the car with her green jasmine tea inside her portable tea cup, and spends half of the trip wondering if perhaps it was a mistake to have had the same drink as usual… Perhaps if she had changed her daily ritual, things would go better than they have been lately.

She drives slowly the entire way, not out of precaution, but because she is so early that she has time to spare. She uses that time to appreciate the ordinary surroundings that usually escape her attention — both due to distraction and the daily hurry. This time, without getting lost in the little streets nearby the destination point, she is a confident and determined executive, full of hopes and dreams, she walks in a more coordinate manner and her chin a little higher. Her handshake follows the instructions of that piece she read on a magazine a few years ago: 0% butter hands, 100% wit and just a touch of positive energy that shall be transmitted in the exact moment that the meeting hands actually shake.

Hours and hours go by and, even sitting in a miserable plastic chair, she keeps her posture perfect and avoids yawning at all costs. They tell her the story of the business, showing her old projects and she even listens attentively to the future projects. This is a big deal, she thinks to herself and the only button that accompanies her today (metallic button from J. Crew pants).

Suddenly, she understands why she had struggled to shake off a pessimistic instinct that had arisen since the interview was scheduled. She remains perplex, not because of the stated affirmation, but due to the distorted honesty that made its way into her ears:

“You know, businesses reject people like you, that don’t have any experience, so, to build your curriculum the only viable option is for you to work for free for some time so you have something to write on your resume”.

She hears this and, almost miraculously, from within her lips, the most peculiar answer that she had ever given to such an awkward affirmation comes out: “Yes, I understand”.

She thinks one, two, three, four, five times… Well, an almost indeterminate amount of times. However, the utmost doubt remained, floating around her head a little too steadily.

Which head should she bang against the wall: that woman’s or her own?

This piece is 100% based on true events and was originally written in Portuguese and posted in 2015, here.