Thursday, August 13, 2009

"I think he's on drugs"

So, one of my fellow Bentley Alumns (different year though) has been trying to land a job. I'm pulling for him (c'mon, his Musical Resume is wicked awesome. Someone needs to hire him NOW I say!).

Anyways, he just changed cellphone companies and I twittered that he can now get pranked by potential employers and that I had a story about my past similar. I thought I'd share (and for those of you who already know this story, SUFFER through it again!)

As my five readers (yes, I've somehow upgraded it seems) may or may not know, when I first moved to Atlanta, I had difficulties finding a position in the IT field. This was shortly after I lost my job in Boston due to the Dot-Com Bust. I was tired of Boston, so I moved to Atlanta. After SEVERAL months of searching (and a few interviews), I was getting desperate with money running out, so I applied for and got a position waiting tables at Waffle House.

Yes, I said it. Waffle House.

Don't believe me? Here's a pic or two:

I started working around Christmas time of '01 and spent thirteen LONG months there working the night shift (9pm-7am).

Now, enter December '02. My regular Waffle House schedule was Sunday-Wednesday 9pm-7am. I woke up that Wednesday night to go into work and I had no hot water. I called the emergency number for my apartment complex and they promised to have someone out first thing in the morning. Gee, I get to go to work unshowered. Luckily I showered that morning...

I worked my ten hours and left about quarter after seven. I stopped by Jesus Chicken on the way home to get my "breakfast-dinner" and I went home to wait for the hot water heater guy.

He showed up about 8:30 (Oh yeah, did I mention I complained loudly that I work nights and needed him to come as early as possible so I didn't lose much sleep?) and replaced my hot water heater. 11:30 he was done and I was PRAYING for the hot water to heat up so I could shower and go to bed. Noon I did one of those "quick showers" since I knew I had minutes of hot water then went to bed.

About 2:00pm my cell phone rings. I'm dead to the world at this point (as it's the equivalent of a "normal person" being called at 2am after getting to bed after midnight). I hear the words "health care" in the caller's greeting, so I go into "telemarketer mode" -- which is where I unconsciously answer all the questions and when they ask if I'm interested, say no. Hey, if you're gonna waste my time, I'm gonna waste yours.

Anyways, I get to the "Are you interested?" part of the conversation and I say "no." -- She asks why and states that it would be a great opportunity and I start to wake up and realize I had been on an initial phone screen interview. I explain the ordeal to the HR person and set up an interview for a few days later. (The company was basically a managed health care organization -- think nursing homes)

(That part of the story is the reason for the aforementioned Twitter update)

Of course, these interviews are AFTER my regular shifts at Waffle House, so I'm PRAYING I don't yawn or fall asleep during them.

My first interview was with the lead technical guy. It was a "how well do you interact" interview. The only thing I really remember from the event was him saying "eh" and I jokingly asked if he was from Canada. He made some snide "Stupid Americans" remark saying I wouldn't even know where Nova Scotia (the province he's from) was -- I proudly described it's location then informed him I cheated 'cuz my sister's husband's (ok, he wasn't husband at the time) family is from there.

The second interview was with the boss man. Again, one of those "how well do you interact" interviews. He also said his whole vision for the system they were creating.

Oh yeah, did I mention I NEVER dealt with the database software I was interviewing for? But they loved the fact I had a multi-dimensional background. Of course, I'm throwing out ideas that I pick up on things fast and am doing anything I can to get the position.

I'm asked back for a THIRD interview. This was when I interviewed back with Canadian on a more technical basis and then I got to talk with the two Financial Analysts I was going to support. Now, back to the idea I had NEVER dealt with (or even heard the word Essbase before), I'm supposed to be able to do some technical stuff with it? Ok, here goes.

Canadian is interested in my debugging skills. So he shows me some of the actual real-life calculation problems he's encountered with Hyperion's piss-poor compiler error messages as to what's wrong. I reiterated that I had never seen Essbase prior to this encounter, but was able to find all four problems in the four scripts he showed me (one he admitted it took him three hours to discover the problem and I found the missing semi-colon in thirty seconds).

I then got to sit with the Financial Analysts. Honestly, I didn't like them. They seemed snooty to me. (Later I realized how awesome and cool they were and admitted my first impression to them -- they said they get it all the time).

I then got called back for a FOURTH interview. Yes people, I said FOURTH. This is getting to be the equivalent of running 14-hour workdays in order to do the commutes and such.

The fourth interview I interviewed with the SVP of the Finance Dept (I wasn't in IT, I was in the Finance Dept as IT couldn't figure out the exact needs of the users). Dude told me it was between me and this other girl and told me I practically had the job, there was just logistics they had to go through. I'm wondering why he's telling me all this, and later hear him say he's leaving the company soon anyways, so he's wondering why he had to interview me. Gee.

I got home about noon after that interview and went to bed. For some reason I woke up about 2:30 and went downstairs (where my phone was charging) and I had a voicemail. It was the HR peeps from said company wanting to talk to me. I called them back and I got a job offer (after about a month of interviews).

Of course, when I went and told my manager at Waffle House, he BEGGED me to stay (apparently I was the ONLY one of his employees he could trust). I told him I couldn't because Waffle House didn't offer me the benefits and such that this new position. Not to mention daylight hours!

Fast forward one year. We're doing our celebrations of birthdays and anniversaries. Canadian dude proclaims the following story:
When we were looking to fill the new Hyperion position, I sent HR on a quest to find people. I got a call back from HR saying "I think we found someone for you. But I think he's on drugs!" I took a chance and still interviewed him and we've gotten an awesome resource out of him. Sometimes I still think he's on drugs, but at least I know it's his personality.
The moral of the story? "When life is looking gloomy, bright things will come." Or is it "When you get a call while sleeping, don't automatically go into telemarketer mode or you'll sound like you're on drugs"?

Monday, August 10, 2009


Admit it. You've all seen it. Those "fashionists" who insist on wearing on wearing women's jeans even though they're male. There's a couple guys on my floor here at The Company that do that.

I have several problems with this, though.

First of all, it looks really wrong. If you're a male and have a woman's thighs and legs, there's too much estrogen in your system.

Secondly, men's hips are positioned differently than women's, and it looks like your pants are about to fall off.

Finally, my biggest issue with it is the lack of cameltoe. You'd think if you had ANYTHING there with the crotch being that tight something would show. But, generally there's NOTHING. Where the hell does it go? I'd DIE if I had my junk tucked away that tight.