The Book of Job (Chapter Three)

I do want a job. Well, no one actually wants a job, but what I want is (a) a steady income, (b) more money than I've got at the moment and (c) a way off this dratted course. And in effect that means a job.

On paper, I'm spending seven hours a day "actively and intensively looking for work". In practice, I'm spending half an hour a day emailing my CV to job agencies, another half eating reduced-to-clear pasta salad from the supermarket next door, and five catching up on reading in a room with twenty others who've developed the skill of spinning the thinnest of conversation to great length.

Had there been more than twelve vaguely suitable vacancies on Monday it might have taken longer to "actively and intensively look for work". I somehow doubt there'll be another twelve by Friday. I'm supposed to apply for at least fifty a week.

I'm reading the short stories of Franz Kafka. It seemed appropriate.

Yesterday, after another wasted day, I walked into the care home at the end of my street, told them I was looking for a work placement and gave reasons why it would benefit everyone if I worked there. After a few minutes of getting their brains around the notion, I was complimented on my "initiative and assertiveness", and an interview was arranged for next Tuesday.

I then walked into the co-op branch opposite and went through a similar routine with the deputy manager - arranging an interview in Wednesday.

When I got home there was a phone message waiting from an accountancy firm, offering me an interview on Monday. Of the thirty or so CV's I've emailed off, it's odd that the only response is in a field I have little knowledge of and no experience in. Maybe they're just really desperate for accountants.

Last Thursday I asked a member of staff why, seeing as CDG specialise in finding work placements, they don't offer any placements themselves - seeing as they're obviously understaffed. The response: it would contravene the data protection act.

Today I told them I'd found two possible placements for myself. After a full ten seconds of open mouthed astonishment, the woman I'd spoken to on Thursday asked me why I'd felt the need to do their job for them. I said it was because if I'd left their job to them it'd never get done, because they had proven themselves completely useless at finding anyone a placement.

She asked me whether I had any issues I'd like to discuss. I said that any company whose sole purpose was to find other companies that wanted free slave labour, but was unable to find any, wasn't just incompetent - it was absolutely bizarre. She objected strongly to my use of the word "slave".

Half an hour later she offered me an interview for a work placement. At CDG. I didn't ask whether it still contravened the data protection act.

So I suddenly have a choice:

* Do a very boring job I know nothing about, but get well paid for - assuming I get the job, which is far from certain.

* Be an unpaid shop girl.

* Care for people with multiple disabilities - which has no immediate financial reward but loads of career potential and kudos, though it's not certain they'll accept me.

* Do what I've been doing informally for a fortnight, namely helping lame ducks like me write CVs and letters. There's no pay and no job at the end of it, but it's doing what I enjoy with people I've found I like.


  1. I don't know why (and maybe I'm wrong...), but I get the impression from your words/discourse that you're in a more cheerful mood! I do sincerely hope so, dear Captain! I miss your wondrous humor, you know?
    I do wish you all the best! May you get whatever is definitely BEST for you! I just know you deserve it!
    Hugs from Lisbon! :-)

  2. Thank's Ric. Hugs are always welcome, especially from a city as beautiful as the one you post pictures of.

    Yes, I'm feeling happier - not any less angry, or less perplexed, but more confident in dealing with the things that make me angry and perpelexed.