Wednesday, February 19, 2014

assailed by doubt, wracked by fear

hi there

well, if you have got here via doing a google thingie on the prize-winning poem from the pilot episode of A Bit Of Fry & Laurie, yes that is where the title comes from and yes i am a big fan of it. that's the one where Mr Fry, then a mere talented comedian and actor, not a spokesperson for absolutely everything, refers to Mr David Bowie as "Derek Bowie", hence me from time to time referring to Mr Bowie as Derek here.

this post, alas, has nothing at all to do with Bowie or that fine, magnificent show (i am still annoyed that they never thought to give Mr Fry the briefest, most background of cameo appearances in House, by the way). it is highly likely that this will be a moan and groan post. although i seek to beautify the post with some pictures of me in outrageously amazing hats.

it's not meant to be a down and out, depressing, doubt and fear and assailed and wracked post, this one, but i suspect it might be read as one. sorry for that. i am just doing a "getting it out of my system", cathartic if you like, rambling and musing on my, for want of a better term, frustration in that wonderful market that is the job market right now.

oh, look, a picture of me wearing a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle hat. Leonardo, i am assured by William.

i have been home for just shy of two months now and thus far have not secured meaningful employment. i mean, i am still doing some freelance writing here and there, which i very much enjoy doing and appreciate a number of you reading, but it does not generate as much income as one needs to live a normal, ordinary life.

thus far i have sent off some 60 (sixty) job applications. i have not applied with a specific, detailed, determined that will be it job in mind, just positions that i genuinely think i could do. well, except for the one that was for "Managing Director", one i clicked to apply on purely because one of them job websites insisted that i would be good at it. of all the applications i have sent out the results have been :

* just over half have generated not even a "decline" or "PFO" response

* the majority of the other under-half have had a "decline" and "PFO" response

* one was knocked back and got a lovely response from a lady at the agency. she was most apologetic and a touch frustrated as she believed me to be an ideal candidate for the position by the company were having none of it.

* one led to an interview on false pretenses.  the advert was for a team leader in office support, the questionnaire was all about management, leadership and office support, the interview was for door to door sales. something i doubt i could do very well.

* two were clearly bogus and fraudulent affairs. one wished me to use my bank account to "move money around the world" (i.e. money laundering); the other just wanted my bank account details in advance of an interview, or even a clue as to what the job was, so that they could pay me US$30 a day for training if i was successful. yeah, i am sure that last one didn't wish to just empty my account.

* two lengthy telephone interviews which went well and led to the discussion of setting up a formal interviews just led to the formal ones being "postponed" / cancelled the day before or on the day.

it really is quite a test to not feel down in the dumps and despondent about it, really. i am fortunate to have family and friends who encourage me and say "the right job will come along", which helps avoid the dumps, but at the end, ultimately if you like, it's me stood by the edge of the dump looking down at it and saying "that's where this is heading".

the child of the condiment phoenix, i must say, has promised a great deal of violence - Don Corleone level violence, which means graphic, statement issuing and to the point - against just about the whole of the UK employment market if i do not get a position soonish. a most delightful promise, and one i would hope they do not need to deliver on.

a picture of me wearing a minion hat, as in a minion out of the excellent films with the name Despicable Me in the title? sure, why not, dear people!

as for my efforts to find a job, well, i am registered up on every single website i can find and am looking, applying when something pops up, nearly daily. this is after i worked out very, very quickly that employers have all but abandoned newspapers for adverts.

i have indeed registered on the site set up by his excellency, the current (and highly popular) Prime Minister David Cameron. he who appointed excellent people to work at Home Affairs who came up with rules that delayed my move home by about six months; something which saw some 33% of the value of our funds vanish due to exchange rate fluctuations. anyway, i suspect his website is run by the same lad that does the Duran Duran one on facebook, for it is of similar brilliance. the job search site is as close to useless and possibly damaging as you can get.

why? well, where to start? it offers to take your CV and your listed skills then match them against relevant jobs. the overwhelming majority of links it sends you off to for jobs are "dead" or pages that tell you the vacancy has expired or been withdrawn. i am also certain, from the vagaries of how i list certain details on different sites, that the two fraudulent offers above stem from this site. otherwise, they seem to think that the best job in the world for me is delivering catalogues.  i'd like to think that my skills and experience could have me do something that contributed a bit more to the world, really.

not that i have an objection with delivering stuff as a job. far, far from it. regular readers here will be aware of my frustrations with a poor, lacking postal service. i would love to work for Royal Mail, putting my money where my mouth is, making sure mail got delivered. however, over on their site, it seems they only want people straight out of University or people some 10 - 15 years older than me to go into executive positions. which is to say they have no interest at all in even looking at people who actually want to work for them; they just want demographics.

so here's a picture of me showing off what, in theory depending on what calendar you presently use, my age. for that is all the Royal Mail look at. sorry that there is no hat in this picture.

one or two people i know have suggested, dear reader, that this blog is the reason i have not really had a proper interview yet. i don't really think i am paranoid enough to accept that one just yet. not all that many people read this, just family and friends really, with a greatly appreciated few finding this by accident and liking what they saw.

i don't seem how me having friends, a wonderful family, and a not too offensive (here) sense of humour about things is something that screams "ignore the CV, qualifications and skills, look at this website, we do not want someone with a personality here, thank you". i would rather think employers are looking at that Linked-In (who i suspect borrowed their name from the class magazine Look-In) site for work stuff than they are checking on how i am letting family and friends around the world know what i am up to on this blog. mostly, however, for reasons somewhat beyond my understanding, i think they are not troubling the internet at all; instead just simply binning my application.

which is something that all my friends and family can say is "their loss" as encouragement to me, but in the end it is mostly my loss, as it means i am not making any meaningful contribution to the world of capitalism or, preferably, society.

hey ho, you never know, i might click publish on this now and fate decrees that tomorrow i get two or three invitations to interviews! bonus if so.

righty-ho, off to bed, then up again in the morning for more searching!

if you've read this far, thank you very much indeed for doing so! if you are in a similar or the same position to me, best of luck to you in your searching quest or questing search, depending on how you like your verbs to behave.

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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