How To Find A Job

Well!  That was an Interesting week.  Now then, where was I?  Ah yes, lost in thought, it being unfamiliar territory.  Took the stupid car to the garage twice.  Rode my bike to pick up the broken car, and blew a chain.  Cost me more for a new chain than the son paid for the bike.  At least it broke at the end of the ride, two blocks from a bike shop.

The compulsive wife insisted that we couldn’t wait till the car failed on its own.   Three of us rely on it, so in it went to replace the Body Control Module.  $625 later, it still didn’t start the next night when the son wanted to leave to pick up a co-worker.  I’ve talked to a dealer’s Repairs Manager.  He has other thoughts about what causes the problem.  He’s sure they can locate and fix it, and I’m sure it will be another $600.

I had to take two of my cats to the vet’s, a male for yearly shots, and the female because she’s an ex-breeder.  She had so many kittens, her teeth are shot.  The vet extracted 14 and a couple had fallen out on their own.  He also did some cosmetic surgery to repair an eyelid, damaged in a fight.  I brought in two cat cages from the garage, set them on the floor and bent over to open them.  The little female came over, all curiosity.  I popped her in, and looked to the living room chair, where the male was sleeping soundly, accent on WAS.  Apparently he remembers his shots from last year.  My best guess is that he was on top of the air vents inside the finished ceiling in the basement.  We had to cancel his appointment that day, but, since we were boarding the female for two days, when my son came home from his midnight shift, the male jumped up on his lap, all unsuspecting, and into the cage he went.  Damn!  I hate being out-thought by a cat.

Enough of my fiscal fiascos, how do you find a job?  Best answer?  Move to India or China!  In Al Capp’s comic strip, L’il Abner, there was an occasional character named Joe Bfytzplk.  In Yiddish, Joe was a shemozzle.  Shit always happened to him.  He walked around with a perpetual little rain-cloud directly over him.  Thank God for retirement. I got to feeling like Joe.  I look back at the list of companies I’ve worked for, and see that most of them no longer exist.  I don’t know whether my city is worse than Ontario or Canada average but, the manufacturing base has just about disappeared.

Five years ago, when my auto-parts plant closed down, I had to quickly learn how to get a job, and found that things have changed.  I don’t know what it’s like where you are, but here, you no longer apply to one, or several companies, for a job you’re qualified for.  No longer are companies accepting free-range job seekers.  Now you register with one or more temp agencies.  They’re supposed to match your abilities and the customer’s requirements.  I haven’t seen one example of that.  They get paid by the number of client hours worked.  If you can’t do the job, they send another poor schmuck tomorrow and send you on another fruitless job match the next day.

They sent me on a line-loading job fit for a healthy 18-year-old when I had twenty years experience on various presses.  The company would have taken me as a press operator, but I had to pass the initiation period, hauling steel parts to feed the line.  I stressed an arthritic hip carrying parts up steps, and had to start all over again.  I found that there is a whole floating cloud of people who never actually get a permanent job.  Take a temp position for a couple of months, and then spend a week drunk, or smoked up, or worse.  Get straight, take another assignment, and keep rolling.  The managers and/or H.R. staff soon learn who, out of those who qualify, actually want to be hired.

I got my job at the auto-parts plant on somebody else’s appointment.  A friend from the previous plant had managed to get hired, and suggested that I try also.  Having recently worked as a security guard, I was able to convince the guard at the door to place my resume and letter on the desk of the Human Resources Manager, at night.  Having only recently switched to plant work, after 25 years of clerical, I put on dress trousers and shirt, and a sport jacket and took myself to the company’s office, early one morning.

As a cost-saving measure, they had done away with a receptionist.  When you entered the foyer, there were a couple of chairs, a small table, and a telephone.  You were to call whoever you wished to see, and they would let you in through a locked door.  I dialed the H.R. manager.  I could hear the phone ring somewhere close, but he didn’t answer. I decided to wait a few minutes and try again.  As I waited, suddenly the door opened, and a man looked out.  He looked at me and asked, “John?”  I told him I wasn’t John.  Had I seen a John?  No!  Who was I, and who did I wish to see?  I gave my name and said that I was there to see the H.R. manager about a job.  It turned out that HE was the H.R. manager.  Since John wasn’t there, I could have his appointment.  Twenty minutes later, I had his job too.

See, it’s easy to get a job.  Like the MRI I mentioned a while back, all you have to do is be in the right place, at the right time.  It also helps to be mentally organised, Luck favors the prepared.  The last job I had before I retired, I think I got because I spoke to the Operations Manager respectfully, saying please and thank-you, a lost art among the young these days.