Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Adventures of the great white job hunter

SACRATOMATO--Luck may have turned today for Brenda Lynn, 23, Sacratomato, after months of unemployment and a strangely irregular job hunt. The young woman had an interview today with the editor of the Auburn Journal, a newspaper located a short drive outside of the city.

"I guess it went pretty well," said Lynn. "The editor asked me to write a sample story for him in a few days, so we'll see how that goes."

Like many other unemployed people her age, Lynn said that her job hunt was complicated by a variety of circumstances, not the least of which was a general inertia of laziness.

"It got to the point where I was scheduling my life around the few so-called 'good' daytime television shows," she said.

She explained that family members didn't at first put too much pressure on her to find a good job, because they thought that she deserved a break. Lynn agreed, and had hoped to find some greater direction in her life and apply to graduate school programs during the available time. Instead, the recent college graduate found that the vast amount of free time in a city where she knew no one only lead to a hermit-type lifestyle, promoting a repeating cycle of loneliness, lowered self-cofidence, and depression.

"We talked this weekend about the possibility of staying here for the holidays, instead of visiting our families, so that Brenda could get a retail job," said her fiance, Zac.

Whether or not it was missing family and friends for the holidays, Lynn said she really started to face her unemployement more head on.

"There was pressure from Zac's family that I was past due to find a job, and I knew that I needed to carefully consider working the holidays. Ultimately, I decided that I wasn't giving up my holidays for temporary minimum wage, but I did escape the pull of the 'idiot box' and ran into some luck," said Lynn. However, she explained, the luck wasn't all good.

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"Adventures," ctd.

Lynn explained that just yesterday she answered an ad for a receptionist position, which may not have been what she expected.

"The guys that answered the phone were my age and were talking really fast. They said they were some kind of natural foods start-up, but they sounded more like frat boys than businessmen," said Lynn. Her suspicions were raised when they wanted to interview her immediately and checked if she was 18 years old.

Curious and cautious, Lynn agreed to the interview, but when she arrived at the business location, she didn't feel comfortable leaving her car.

"It was a weird concrete building, half storage unit, half business front. The main business had signs for Spa and Billiards, which sounds to me like suburban code for that classic euphemism 'massage parlor.'"

But while she was away on that "interview," the editor of the Auburn Journal was leaving a message for Lynn at her house, asking for an interview.

"In the end, I guess my luck balanced out," said Lynn. "Now I just have to gear up for the possibility of having a job again. Maybe they'll even pay me for my time!" she joked.

She's had enough "free" time.

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