Monday, June 16, 2014

Prostitution on Paper or Marketable Skills Employers Want

Earlier in the week, the Community Manager of Webucator approached me and asked if I could write a blog about the most marketable skills employers are looking for in new employees. 

I told him yes. 

Now, I'm sitting at the computer with the 2010 edition of "10 Things Employers Want You To Learn in College" and realizing how ridiculous this is.

Honestly, if I knew what certain skills will get you an interview or secure a job, I would share them. But, truly I don't. Employers are all different. Employers are all looking for something else especially depending on position.

Let me tell you what I do know about being "marketable" because I learned it the hard way. It doesn't matter what skills you have or don't have. It doesn't matter: the school you went to, the degree you earned. It's not a skill to list on an application. 

What matters is Prostitution

You must do this to get anywhere. You must learn to sell yourself, and it starts before the interview. 

Someone that knows how to prostitute themselves on paper will get the job. Shit, people with less experience, less education, less basic knowledge will surpass you. All because they know how to present their goods to the employer. 

Qualities of the Best Prostitutes (On Paper):

  • They know what he wants and they will be sure to tell him how they can give it to him good. (Address the qualifications listed on the advertisement or their website.)
  • They'll make him feel like he's the best choice out there, that they want him. (Pretend they are your first choice, your dream job. Not your launching pad.)
  • But that they don't need him because they could have anyone they wanted as well. (Do not seem desperate.)
  • They embellish. (Don't lie, but finesse. That unpaid internship is listed under work experience.) 
  • They know a little bit of everything. Sure, they master something, but the smartest and best paid know how to charm every kind of customer. (Honestly, any skill can be learned on the internet. SEO-search engine optimization-is a big skill to have now and can be learned about in one afternoon surfing online.)
These prostitutes on paper also, usually, have someone or something backing them. 
  • A reputation. (A strong online platform or established references in the industry)
  • A Pimp. (A sorority sister or fraternity brother in the industry)
  • A Madam. (An Alumn else on the inside: tips on maximizing alumn network)
So, yes, the job market is a daunting place (especially for an introvert like me). But if I can be a prostitute on paper, then so can you!

Friday, June 13, 2014

5 Ways The Public Annoys Me (Library Employee)

I have worked in several libraries (public, school, and private). I'm always happy to see people coming into the library, reading, and generally using this community resource. However, I am a public servant so I do interact with the public on a daily basis and people tend to believe they are special.

Here are ways that (in general) people most annoy me and my library staff on a regular basis:
  1. I don't have a library card but I need to get on the computer to print something really quick. Library staff have heard this, every variation of this, since the dawn of computers. We've seen the criers and the screamers, the disbelievers and the bribers. Sometimes we feel for you, sometimes we don't. The problem is we can't do it. By policy, we are not allowed to put you on a computer if you are not a library member. And, unless we hand you our personal library card and tell you the pin number, we cannot log you in anyway. We have to have a barcode and pin number to enter to get onto the computers. We have given you the options, paying for a visitor/replacement card or visiting the computer place down the street (which will also charge).
  2. I couldn't return my stuff on time because I had to blah blah blah and by that time you guys had closed. Wow. That sucks because we super don't care. Unless someone died, we won't and can't do much beside apologize to you for you on your behalf. You could have put the stuff in the drop box out front, which is what that box is for. We back check it to the last day we were open, which means you could literally turn the materials into the drop box two minutes before we open on Monday morning and we will check it in as if it were still Friday. You could have also renewed your materials online, called an open library, called our 1-800 number, or came inside to renew the books any time we were open. Also, library fines are typically nominal like $.25 a day so . . . sucks.
  3. You should have told me my stuff was overdue! You should have called me! Ugh, no. No, I shouldn't because we have literally thousands of patrons and at least a hundred of those have stuff overdue everyday. No, I'm not calling you. No, you are not special. Besides, that is your responsibility. You could have checked the due date online, you could have called into any open library in the system, you could have come into the library and asked. And, for God's sake, we stamp the due date on the inside of the books! Now pay the fine so we can buy more books that you won't return on time.
  4. I know you're closing in five minutes, but I really need to print something and the computers are shut down! Can you turn them back on for me? The computers shut down 10 minutes before we close and so does the Wi-Fi. Chances are your library staff does not have the ability to turn it back on. It's remotely shut down by IT.
  5. You closed just one minute ago but I want to check out a book/use your bathroom/ask you questions/return something that can't be put in the bookdrop. I can still see you inside. Why won't you open the door for me? The quickest and easiest answer is: We won't help you because we want to go home. We are mostly salaried employees so those few minutes you want to take will be on our own dollar. Also, we can't open the doors and let people into (what is actually) a government building after closing time. Usually the register is open because we are doing cash reports and securing the day's money. Libraries do get robbed for our chump change. It's not safe for you or us, and it is against policy. Please just go home.

We are not doing what you want because:
  • You are not special.
  • We literally have no control over the situation.
  • It is against policy.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

How to Be Thankful or Step Two to Being a Better Person

As I stated in part one, I have had the desire to become a better, a more human and caring person. While the first part dealt with apologies and the proper ways to do them, the second part will be gratitude. I need to  let my peers, friends, and family know that I appreciate them. There have been times when I was down, broke or broken, and these people have lifted me up. I need to thank them.

Some I have already thanked privately like Lauren and Junette. Others I will thank in person or in detailed letter, and still others I will thank with the words in this post. Unlike an apology, these deeds can and need to be expressed to the public. There is no humiliation, no necessity to hide what they and I have done.

While everyone should should be given thanks, there isn't the time or space in this post to do so. Instead, I will point out a few (of the many) people that have helped me at key moments in my life.
Ken - Thank you for being the older brother I never had in Colorado, for sitting on the bench outside of our dormitory while I moaned about lost loves, for being the first fellow writer/artist on my level that I could talk to about the trade, and for always having my back.

Nate - Thank you for teaching me how to open my heart again and to emotionally love without being physical. Never before. Thank you for living a few doors down and carrying my backpack so I could hike with you even after I dislocated my shoulder.

My Siblings - Thank you for still being close despite my living thousands of miles away and despite our parents' divorce. They were right about one thing: When we have no one else, we will always have each other.
Tabitha - Thank you for being the first real friend I had in Hawaii, for giving me a bicycle, and a person to call as an emergency contact.
Snoopy Group - Thank you for giving me a place to belong in middle school and high school, and in a book especially! When I could've been all alone, when I could've succumbed to peer pressure and depression, you all took me in and gave me friendships that have lasted through the years.
Nikki - Thank you for being my first real grown-up girlfriend, for telling me stories about men, and kissing me in the bar after I did that handstand that one time. 

Ms. Rader - Thank you for talking to me in school about the real issues, for writing me a letter of recommendation, for being hard on me, for taking our small class to Italy, for giving me a role model for maybe the first time in my life.

Aunt Diana - Thank you for being the only one to sign on my student loans even though you were barely over your stroke and able to sign your name anyway. With your help, I went to the college of my choice and I was the first in my family to graduate.

Nikko - Thank you for being the first one to approach me at Lime Kiln, to joke with me, to get me dancing at my first high school dance (Hawaii themed), and help me blend in when I was the new kid. You did this for everyone, no matter who they were or how they dressed or what group they belonged to.

Thank you to all my fans and those that have supported my book.

Thank you to everyone that has critiqued and criticized my book. It has made me a better writer.
And to everyone else, my elementary school friends, my extended family, my parents, my middle school redistricted buddies, my high school classmates, and my college peers. To the people on my student newspapers and literary magazines. To my gymnastics teammates, my track teammates, my cheerleader friends and enemies. To my teachers, old and young. To the geniuses I met in Wyoming and Colorado, to the children I have worked with and their parents. To the neighbors that talked to my family and to the neighbors that avoided us. To my coworkers from my first part-time job as a grocery store cashier, to my coworkers at my full-time job as a library assistant. To my former lovers and to my current one. 

You've molded me in your own way, changed me for the better. You opened my mind to new points, new information, new paths in my life. You've given me music to appreciate, letters to cherish, letters to burn. You've taken photos with m, ugly and beautiful, deleted and saved. You pushed me to excel, you challenged me to win. You gave me writing material, encouraged me when I was depressed, supported me when I had nothing. Some of you gave me friendship while others gave me competition, and fewer still provided both.

You have been my turning points, made me who I am, and will continue to make me into the woman I will be. Sometimes I have gone willingly and sometimes I've needed pushing.

But thank you for being you because it has made me, me.