Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Interviews, Dating and Goals

Interviewing candidates for a job is like blind dating.  You have so much hope going in and then you realize all too soon that the resume (or the friend's glowing remarks) definitely don't match up to the person sitting before you. 

Many times, the interviewee/date just isn't a good fit.  No big deal.  We're a little bit country and they're a little bit rock-n-roll, or vice versa.  Nice to meet you but this isn't going to work out.

The biggest example of how interviewing candidates for a job is like blind dating is that there is always that awkward moment when talking about . . . GOALS.  It is shocking how many people do not have goals or cannot articulate them.

Some quick advice, if you don't have any goals currently please get some.  Or one.  Or pretend to have some.  Ask your friends what their goals are and then use those.  For real.  In and interview I just want to know you have at least put the bare minimum of thought into it. 

For those who are taken aback by that question in an interview...."So what are your long-term professional and personal goals?"  'Ummmmm' does not suffice as an answer.  Cocking your head to the side and going glassy-eyed doesn't work either.  Giggling and shrugging your shoulders and saying (insert Valley Girl tone here), "I just wanna, like, work for a stable company," gets you nowhere. You might as well just say, "Look lady, I just want a paycheck. Dig it?"

In a dating scenario, it still amazes me how many guys are like (let's go with a stupid caveman tone), "So. . .I was just hoping you'd marry me, cook and clean for me and bear 29 of my children.  Cuz that's what women want, right?"  Nope.  Not. 

The moral of this story is:  There isn't really a moral.  I'm exhasuted from interviewing people and it reminds me of dating, which I hate, and EVERYONE NEEDS GOALS!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Thanks a lot, Kid!

There's nothing like hanging out with a 5 year old to keep you humble.  And by you, I mean me.

Over the weekend I traveled to attend my nephew's 5th birthday party and spend some quality time with him.  C is the most "neglected" of my nieces and nephews because he lives the furthest away.  We had a great weekend of bonding!

After church today, C asked me, "Can we take pictures with my new camera?" 

Me:  "Of course!" 

C:  "Yay!  Can I take pictures of you too?" 

Me:  "Sure!"  Half jokingly I added, "But you can only take pictures of my good side...."

I mentally high-fived myself.  Way to bond!  This kid loves me!  And I'm super witty!  My make-up looks awesome! 

Once in the car, C had his camera in hand. 

I turned around in my seat to face him so that he could take a picture.  Just as he was about to snap the picture, he lowered the camera and said, "Ummmm...so....where is your good side?"


Mental high-five voided.  Give the kid a point...he's super witty.  Seriously one of the funniest moments ever.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Mishlei (Proverbs) 31

There are days when I am pretty sure the only verse in Proverbs 31 that I fulfill is 22:  She is clothed in fine linen and purple.  I love nice clothes and my favorite color is purple so mark me down for two points! Yeah!

Okay so I realize that there isn't a point system, but if there were I would definitely at least have two!

More thoughts (serious ones) on Mishlei (Proverbs) 31 later. . .

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Rewind to 2007

I found a disc tonight that was labeled "Pics from 2007".  Well nothing good ever came from that kind of label and this picture is proof!  Quite a bit happened in 2007, including my 23rd birthday, which was celebrated at my apartment with my siblings, my months old nephew and my mommy.  Yes, we are wearing pirate hats; I know you are jealous.  DudeGuyMan and I, of course, acted like complete morons....but that's nothing new. 

Interesting facts:  I lived in Missouri at the time and worked for the company famous for the little blue box.  I was a size 0--is that really a size? Those jeans I am wearing had a retail value of $250 and I paid $20 :)  I still have them, not because I ever expect to or want to ever be a size 0 but because they are proof that I once was!  2007 was the year I became a workaholic, went back to college and started coming out of my post-engagment funk.  Ah...the memories!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Inappropriate Inquiries

I was standing with an armload of merchandise waiting to pay for my loot at my favorite clothing store.  Oh how I love shopping!  Cashier approaches. . .Friendly greetings were exchanged.  I handed over my discount cards, swipe my membership card and we chatted about the new styles, great weather and she ecstatically told me that she recently got engaged!!!  Yeah!  I notice her ring (because she is proudly waving it in front of my face) and we comment about it and about how her fiance is perfect....all is well.

Then...(cue ominous music "dun dun dunnnn") ...things begin to go downhill.

Cashier:  "Are you married?"

Me:  "Nope!  Maybe someday."  I say this half-heartedly because currently I am throwing down some money on clothing and I have no one to answer too! :)

Cashier (sadly):  "Awwww....well you still have time."  Gee, thanks lady.  "Serious boyfriend?"

Me (beginning to get annoyed but keeping an upbeat tone):   "Nope.  No one on the horizon really."

Don't get me wrong I totally understand that when people have something that makes them happy they think you need the same thing to make you happy and when you don't have it they think you aren't happy....but she didn't stop there.

Cashier:  "Alright....can you confirm your address and birth date for me?"

I confirm it.  Then, she gets a horrified look on her face!

Cashier:  "Oh my gosh I didn't realize you were 26!"
*the cashier is probably barely 20

I look at her waiting for her explanation of what is so horrifying about being 26.

Cashier:  "I mean, that's close to 30! I know people are waiting longer to get married....but you don't even have a serious boyfriend!"

Me:  "Mmm hmmmm."  I grab my shopping bag as she hands me the receipt and hoping she will shut her mouth while she's behind.

She doesn't.

Cashier:  "Aren't you afraid that when you finally find someone, you will be too old  to have kids?"

I shrug.  As I turn to walk away I say, "Who says I want kids?"

Cashier:  "Everybody wants---"

Me:  "Congratulations on your engagement."

Exit store.

Oh tact, where art thou?

Monday, March 21, 2011

Under the Rug

Once, when I still lived with my parents, I literally swept some dirt under a rug.  I am pretty sure I was headed out with a friend or expecting a friend to come over so I tried to quickly complete the chore of sweeping.  At the time, it seemed easier to lift the corner of the rug, shove the dirt pile under the rug and move on rather than sweep it into a dust pan.  Out of sight, out of mind and for all anyone else knew I had completed the job correctly.  The floor looked clean!

The whole time I was with my friend I kept thinking back to the dirt under the rug.  What if while I was gone my mom suddenly got the urge to rearrange the furniture, including the rug, and found the dirt?  What if somehow the corner of the rug flipped up and the dirt was exposed?  I had so many "what ifs" going through my mind.  I realized it would have been much easier just to acknowledge the dirt and clean it up correctly instead of trying to make is appear like I had cleaned.  Sigh.

This post isn't about the immense regret I have for sweeping dirt under a rug when I was a teenager :)  It is, however, one of my favorite things:  an analogy.

We all have dirt.  As individuals we have dirt, as families, friends, communities, etc. It seems that more times than not people choose to go to the extra effort of lifting the rug and sweeping the dirt under the rug instead of actually cleaning up the dirt or acknowledging that they even have dirt.  Why?  It seems easier and it keeps up appearances.  Ah....appearances.  The older I get the more I hate the idea of keeping up appearances, as if the people we are keeping them up for are perfect?  And if they knew we had dirt they would be far superior?  No.  Once the dirt is successfully hidden there's always a chance of it being discovered which ultimately leads to another discovery.....that you're a liar.  That's worse than the existence of dirt.  To have dirt is human; to lie about it is stupid.  We put ourselves through this vicious cycle of hiding things about ourselves and protecting what's been hidden all in the name of appearance.  So why not just acknowledge the dirt in the first place and deal with it?

Maybe the dirt has increased or gotten muddy or debris has been added. It looks bad and maybe it is bad but you want people to think that you have the perfect life, the perfect family--the perfect everything-- so much so that when it isn't perfect you will settle for the appearance of perfect and the stress and tension that comes with keeping up with the appearance.

Nearly 10 years ago, I had a goal for my life that I immediately put into motion.  That goal was to have a normal, drama free life.  Little did I know that the drama of others could have a significant impact on staying true to my goal but I think I've done pretty well despite a few set backs.  10 years ago I cleaned out the dirt and discovered that most of the dirt I had been sweeping under the rug wasn't mine.  I had been helping others hide their dirt, against my will, and when I put an end to that.....a lot of relationships ended.  And that's okay.  I'd rather be happy, honest and focused on bettering myself than helping others live in a fantasy land.

My life is not perfect.  There are things I wish had never happened.  There are decisions that are difficult to live with but at the end of the day I know I don't have any secrets.  And if my lack of secrets offends you or exposes your dirt.....sorry 'bout it.  Who are you trying to impress?

Saturday, March 19, 2011

An Unthinkable Utterance

This morning Palestinian terrorist group,Hamas, is yet again launching rockets into Israel from Gaza, more than 50 in fact.  If you follow the conflict in the Middle East, you almost become desensitized to hearing about rockets and mortars.  I try not to let myself become desensitized to it especially because I am usually comfortably and safely sitting in my apartment reading about it. 

As I was reading The Jerusalem Post online about today's attacks, this quote caught my eye:
"We are used to sporadic rocket and mortar fire, but this was not the daily show we are used to,"
How thankful are you that in your daily, civilian life you do not have to utter those words?  "We are used to sporadic rocket and mortar fire."  I hope that never becomes our reality and I hope we will not sit idly by and shrug off the fact that it is someone else's reality. 

Stay informed about global happenings.  It all affects us or will one day affect us, even if we choose to ignore it.  Today, be thankful that you do not know the fear of having rockets launched at you and your loved ones.


Thursday, March 17, 2011

An Aunt and Her Boy

After A and I played in the dirt
we ate some ice cream and then took funny pictures! 
A would shout, "Okay, happy!"

"Okay, now REALLY happy!"

"Uhhh...stick out your tongue!"

"Fish lips!"

"Oooh!  Let's be Pirates!"

"Now Silly on the floor!"

I called the shot on this last one.  A is yelling, "No!  Tickling is not the rules!"

Monday, March 14, 2011

Never Felt So Alive!

(Special Note:  This post must be read as if I am speaking in a perky voice.  If you cannot imagine me speaking in a perky tone....don't worry, I can't imagine it either....so imagine someone else reading it perk-ily).

After spending a full, horrible, miserable, fever-ridden, hallucination filled, coughing-snotting-puking week at home, with the dreaded Influenza A, I returned to work today!  And it was G-L-O-R-I-O-U-S!  Things that usually annoy me or make me mad, made me feel ALIIIIIIIVE!! (think Carol Burnett)

I woke up to a random March snowfall.  Was I irritated?  Well, yes....but then I put on my snow boots and SKIPPED through it to my car and then I SCRAPED it of my windshield with a SMILE on my face!

8,000 unread emails?  That's OKAY!

My office obviously became a dumping ground for items no one else wanted to deal with while I was gone.  Did I sigh heavily and think of something snarky to say?  Almost!  But really I removed each item jolly-ly (I'm making up words, friends) and dumped them in someone else's workspace or threw the items away!!

Bad employees?  I will FIRE them!

Unsolicited sales call?  I will TRANSFER it!

You couldn't stop what you were doing for 10 additional seconds to wipe off the counters in the breakroom after making your lunch?  I will CLEAN it FOR you!! 

I've never been so happy to be out of my apartment!

Tomorrow, the universe will go back into it's alignment.  Until then, please forgive this ridiculous and possibly still fever-induced post. 

Monday, March 7, 2011

Round the Corners

S is four years old and has been obsessed with trains since he was 18 months old.  This kid has every Thomas the Train character train and track set imaginable and he can spend hours constructing intricate train routes. 
Little S, with his sweet little voice, interrupted a conversation I was having with his daddy to ask me to help him build a track.  One of my favorite pastimes is constructing tracks with S so I agreed. 

"But," S said holding up one hand in warning, "I want to make a square track and a triangle track."

I glanced over at S's daddy and we both agreed through concerned eye contact that we were going to have to explain that train tracks can be straight, oval or circular. 

After we dashed S's dreams, he walked up to his playroom and said defiantly, "I WILL make a SQUARE track.  I WILL!"

About a half an hour later I joined S upstairs and found him like this:
"Jessita, I CAN make a square track.  See?  You just have to round the corners."

Sometimes grown ups forget to tell kids to try or to even allow them to figure things out for themselves.  Instead we look at them gently and explain with our heads slightly cocked with sober faces why they won't be able to succeed at something.  Luckily, S is determined.  He took a "can't" and decided to prove us wrong!  Some children would have taken our defeating words and not tried to build the square track.

Lately, I've been thinking about some dreams I've wanted to pursue since I was a child.  I have let lack of self-confidence or defeating words affect whether I pursue those dreams or not.  One dream has been really nagging at me lately.  After seeing this picture of S on my phone I decided to think of this dream or idea as my square track.  Instead of letting possible obstacles get in my way I'm just going to round the corners. 

This was our attempt of the triangle track.  We were one piece short but we tried!