Honest To Job

I am a terrible liar.

That’s the truth.

My (lack of) lying skills were called into service Thursday morning when I had to put off an interview for a job I don’t want but will take if the job I do want doesn’t come through.

It’s strategery.

I interviewed for the job I do want, the one at the university, on Wednesday morning. Interview by committee: four women (!) sitting in the small conference room with me. It went very well, and that includes the questions I refused to BS about (because, as previously mentioned, I’m a bad liar). I can sell myself, but if you ask me directly if I have any experience with something specific, with which I have no real experience, well… I’m going to tell you that I don’t really have any. Because what’s the point of lying about it? My face will turn red and my chest will get splotchy and if they hire me they’ll notice that I can’t do whatever it I said I could do. Lose-lose.

I actually think that being honest about those things in an interview is a strength. I have found, on the very few occasions when I’ve had to admit a lack of skill, that it’s appreciated. People even smile. Or say, “Oh, well that’s not really a problem.” As long as I’m not applying to be a nurse while having exactly no nursing experience whatsoever, everything’s pretty kosher.

I did take First Aid when I was a Girl Scout. And I’m very good in emergencies. So.

Anyway. Here’s the thing. I want this job even though it doesn’t pay enough and they totally know it doesn’t pay enough. (To that end, I suggested that they might let me freelance on the side, in a manner that keeps up connections with “stakeholders” – also known as People We Would Be Dealing With – but that avoids conflicts of interest. And they had no problem with that.) But as is so often the case with state jobs, the position must be publicly posted as an opening for no less than two weeks before the hiring manager can do anything.

When she said to me, “I just found out there are rules I have to follow,” I read that to mean, “We want to hire you and we might as well do it now, but we can’t because government.”

Fine. I get it.

Here’s the trick. This is where the lying comes in. The other job, the one I don’t want but will take if the university job doesn’t come through… that guy? Is gonna offer me the job like 24 hours after he interviews me for the third time. It’s common in my business for that to happen. I’ve already worked for him once, we’ve already talked on the phone twice; all that remains is for me to see the facility and meet the general manager.

And for the GM to like me, but whatever.

Which meant that I could by no means attend the previously scheduled interview on Friday. Because, even though it would be a Friday, I would have til like Tuesday at the outside before he’d be all, “Hey! Wanna work here?”

And I’d have to be all, “Um… can I think about it for approximately 8 days?”

And in the immortal words of Sweet Brown… “Ain’ nobody got time for that!”

So I punted. I thought and thought, and came up with the story that we’re already short-staffed at work, and now someone has a Thing and will be out for… oh, wow, let me see… I’m looking at a calendar… yyyyeah, like, two or three weeks.

Gosh… I hate to put it off that long, but…

It’s a damned good thing this was happening in a phone call, because I’m fairly certain that my chest instantly got splotchy, which happens when I A) have an anxiety attack; 2) drink some vintages of red wine; and third) lie. Plus, if a person can sound crestfallen, then that’s how David sounded. And possibly a little suspicious. He knows about the university job possibility. And the university job possibility knows about David. The only difference is, I told the university job people that I want to work for them… but that I have to hold David off until they can give me an answer.

You see now why I could never cheat in a relationship.

So for now, the university is stuck in neutral and David is in a holding pattern, hovering around me expectantly like a trained dog waiting for the okay to finally eat the treat that’s balanced on its nose.

I think I just compared myself to a dog treat.

Interview question: “If you were an animal, what animal would you be?”

My answer: “Well, I’m really more of an animal treat.”

Because any other answer would be a lie.

10 thoughts on “Honest To Job

  1. Go easy on yourself. You wouldn’t be doing him a favor if you accepted – then backed out three days later because your first choice came along. Better to prolong the engagement than jilt him at the alter.

    Speaking of… how’s Rick? 😉

    • You know what? It never would have occurred to me to back out. Is that weird? And Rick is fine, thank you. He got to see the red wine = splotchy chest trick last night, in fact. (V-neck sweater.)

  2. Pingback: Crestfallen. Twice. | rsmithing

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