Tag Archives: layoff

The video resume

So, a couple weeks ago while spinning on my cycle trainer, I came up with a great idea of starting a video resume website to help differentiate candidates from the other wolves in the job-hunting pack. However, like most of my ideas, someone already beat me to the punch. CareerBuilder.com tried it a few years ago and now a local company, InterviewStudio, has launched something more robust. They are also offering FREE services to the first 1000 applicants, so it might be worth checking out. I know nothing about this company, so this post doesn’t necessarily mean it has the LOL stamp of approval. Just sharing because most jobless people really like free stuff.

As much as I think a video resume is probably a decent idea, I’m just not sure that I am confident I can keep a straight face during the taping of my video resume. In fact, I am pretty sure I would at some point want to “worm-out.” Now, for those that don’t know what worming-out means and need a visual, check out the Orville Redenbacher Popcorn commercial. Most of my good friends know my motto “when in doubt, worm-out” and have witnessed me on several occasions worming-out in bridesmaid dresses on the dance floor, or during a long musical interlude at karaoke. Bummer I missed Orville’s casting call. 

The worm adds that flavor and shock-factor to any given situation. When people are in shock, they tend to forget what it was they were doing prior to being shocked. For example, you are sitting in a meeting with your boss…or wait, jobless people don’t usually have bosses. OK, um…how about you are in a heated situation (argument with spouse, job interview that’s going side-ways, etc.) and you are getting grilled to the wall about something. This person is being a real prick trying to trip you up,  your head starts spinning and you can’t find any words to recover the situation. The tension in the room is increasing. What do you do? You worm-out. Straight up, just do it. What’s the worst that could happen? And, if you are jobless, you really have nothing to lose, right? I mean, if you find yourself being grilled in an interview, this person is a prick and there’s a good chance you don’t want to work for prick anyway, right? So why not worm-out? There are really only two things that could happen. The guy will either laugh and hire you on the spot because he just realized that he needs comic relief in his office. Or, the interview will end abruptly, not wasting anymore of your time away from house pants. Furthermore, you will be remembered thus differentiating yourself from the other candidates. I only wish I remembered to worm-out after I got laid off. Damn, that would’ve been a hell of an exit!

OK, so enough about the worm and back to the video resume idea. After watching some of the interviews produced by InterviewStudio, I sort of feel they lackluster. But maybe that’s because I’m rarely good at being all business, similar to the backside of a mullet hair-do.  On the resume video front though, I think I really prefer what my friends over at Unemploymentality have come up with. You should check it out, it’s pretty entertaining and doused with extra cheese sauce.

Curious how many people have ever done or considered doing a video resume? If you’ve done one, leave a comment and let me know what you thought of it and whether or not it got you any interviews. 

 

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Filed under Economy, Job search tips, Layoffs, Life, Resources, Sanity tips, Slightly amusing

The ties that bind

Well, it’s official. Monday was the final drop of all things belonging to my former employer. It totally felt like a relationship break-up, where after about 2 months post break-up conversation you finally decide that it’s really over and set a time to meet and exchange the box of goods that had accumulated at each others houses over time. I returned five things, but only left with two items – my Rubix Cube and my small white board, as these had sentimental value. The white board wasn’t used to track projects and deadlines, instead it was called the “sneeze-tracker” and kept a tally of the daily sneeze explosions in our cramped cube space ; it often made people chuckle. And the Rubix Cube is just a simple reminder that my life is also a colorful puzzle that takes time to sort itself out. Unlike the Rubix Cube though, my life doesn’t come with easy to follow instructions explaining how to solve the puzzle. But it does come with its own internal guidance system and on Monday, as I made my final exit through the doors, I heard it loud and clear. An overwhelming sense of relief, reassuring me that this break-up was a good thing. I knew that I would no longer feel bound.  
 
I give my best to those still standing.  It can’t be easy to go into the office every day and see the empty seats of your fallen comrades. I wish you all well and ask only one thing. Email me at home when you sneeze :). The sneeze-tracker is back in action and the operator is standing by in house pants.
Steven Miller Photography, "Bound"

Steven Miller Photography, "Bound"

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Filed under Layoffs, Life, Random thoughts

Seattle pink-slips unite

Am I the only one who’s still jobless in Seattle and sitting alone unshowered in my house pants until 5pm every day? Where are all the other pink-slipped Seattle-metro area layoffs hiding out? Are you under a rock wallowing in self pity or are you the one I spotted at Unemployment Lake sporting a Snuggie?

If this describes you or one of your friends who own a pink-slip, sounds like its time for a Lady of Leisure intervention. At Lords and Ladies of Leisure, it’s our goal to force socialization and make sure we stick together and have fun as we journey through the land of unemploymentality together. So, if you are sick and tired of the pink-slipped version of your former self, and interested in sharing your story please send me a note at  lol.seattle.kr[at] gmail [dot] com.

Pink-Slips Unite!

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Filed under Layoffs, Life, Rants

You too can have a muffin top

Ah, the muffin top – the jiggly inner-tube of skin and fat that sits atop ones waistline and grows exponentially during unemployment. If you are jobless due to a layoff and interested in growing your own friendly little muffin top to keep you company during the long lonely days of job searching, below is my recipe. Enjoy!

  • 1 pair of low waist jeans
  • 1 pair of level 1 house pants
  • 1 month supply of woman’s PMS (optional)
  • 6 c pink-slip
  • 6 c shock, anger and resentment
  • 6 c booze (your choice; beer seems to add bulk quickly)
  • 3 c economic recession
  • 2 c bills
  • 1 c stress and anxiety
  • 1/2 c sleep deprivation
  • 6 c comfort foods – chocolate, chips, etc.
  • 1/4 c exercise

Upon receipt of your pink-slip, your body temperature will naturally increase slightly due to stress. Once it reaches 100 degrees, drop the pink-slip into a large bowl (toilet bowl suggested) and beat aggressively with shock, anger, resentment, economic recession, stress, anxiety and bills for about 2 weeks until the pink-slip mixture begins to percolate. Once it’s active, introduce booze and sleep deprivation over the course of one week until the mixture forms a tranquil pond of goo. DO NOT ADD EXERCISE JUST YET. For maximum puff factor in your muffin top, it’s imperative that these negative energies co-mingle long enough to successfully interact with the remaining ingredients. 

Over the next week or two, add in the remaining ingredients starting first with the comfort foods alternating as chocolate-salt-grease-chocolate-salt-grease until the mixture starts to rise over the course of another two weeks. If you have access to a woman’s PMS, add that now for the extra bloat factor. Once you feel that the pink-slip mixture has enough puff, begin to introduce exercise starting first with sit-ups to really build up the muscle underneath the fat. This will create that cute little jiggle in your finished muffin top.

Drop the mixture into your house pants and bake in bed overnight. That next morning, zip yourself into your low waist jeans and Mr. Muffin Top will appear. Be sure to wear a short shirt and show him off to everyone you know. My muffin top responds positively to zerberts* and enjoys long walks in the park.

 

 

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Filed under Life, Slightly amusing

Identity crisis

When you are laid off, you feel like a big loser and you start to have an identity crisis cuz you were “this”: 

“I am a creative marketing and PR pro with entrepreneurial instincts and proven ability to ramp up quickly and deliver results in a dynamic and ambiguous environment.”

And now you’re becoming a twisted version of your former self that looks a little like this:

“Maybe I am just a no talent ass clown of a loser?”

“HEY! Listen up – don’t talk about yourself like that! You were given a gift of time, remember? Now use this time to find the perfect career for you and make yourself happy!” 

“Who is that talking???? OMG – I totally have a split personality disorder! When did that develop? Is that why they gave me the pink-slip because my ‘otherside’ came out at the office?”

“No…that’s not what’s going on, silly. I am your inner critic, don’t freak out and start searching WedMD. You got as far as you could at Microsoft doing ‘that’ and while you were good at ‘that,’ you weren’t fulfilled. So why don’t you explore writing?”

“Oh, thank god! Ok, how about I start a blog? Yes! I will start a blog that will be about…hmm…living life as a laid off person…and it will make people laugh! Yes! God – I am SO brilliant and someone will take notice and want to hire me because I am fucking funny! Oh dear…”

“What?”

“The stats on my blog are down. Damn-it. People don’t like me. Oh wait!!! They are up to 120 visitors today! Oh wait, now they are down to 12. God you loser, where’s that bag of Cadbury Mini-Eggs?!? Wait, look at that!! 164 visitors from that posting on forcing socialization! Gosh, you are SO clever….you are MONEY baby!”

Somehow, this blog is shaping my new identity and I think my mood seems to be mirroring my blog stats. For the unemployed person who’s new to blogging and deprived of human contact, visitors to my blog equate to friends. 

Blog stats|Mood indicator

Blog stats|Mood indicator

Yes, we (the pink-slipped, jobless and hopeless) tend to get a little pathetic and that’s why I started writing this blog. I’ve noticed that my stats (friends) increase considerably when I post a story that’s self-deprecating in nature and void of anything really important. I know I am not the go-to blog for anything of great value and I am ok with that, as long as you keep coming back because you are slightly amused. And, all I ask of my “friends” in return is that if you are slightly amused by my blog, PLEASE SHARE MY BLOG WITH FRIENDS so I can have more friends. I am lonely and bored and every single day I am working for you! I keep a notepad handy so that when something slightly entertaining pops into my head or crosses my path, I write it down so I can share this useless and possibly funny story with you, my friends, for FREE!

So, it’s time to give back to me – the jobless who’s getting very sick of spending all this time with herself. I need volunteers to co-manage my new campaign – the “help Keri find the perfect job” campaign! Anyone? Anyone? If  you are interested in volunteering, please email me at lol.seattle.kr [at] gmail [dot] com. More to come on the campaign later…

If you don’t want to help that’s fine too. Just be forewarned that one day you may hear a knock on your door and when you open it I will be there – unshowered, wearing house pants exploring the contents of my navel, gorging myself on chocolate and fiddling with my new friend, Mr. Muffin Top. Then, we’ll talk ;)

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Pink-slipped impulse purchase prevention plan

After the midday happy hour with the pink-slip pals the other day, I thought it would be a good idea to run to the grocery store to pick up a few things on my “mental grocery list” so that I could make the veggie lasagna I’d seen in Cooking Light. Unfortunately, the only thing lasagna related that found its way into my basket were a few cans of stewed tomatoes and ricotta that were discovered upon check-out hiding under the below items:

  • 6-pack of Miller Lite tall boys (seems I am turning into a bachelor with this purchase…)
  • a bag of Cadbury Mini Eggs (oh wait, bachelors rarely crave chocolate so turns out I’m OK!)
  • a bottle of wine (Black Diamond Shiraz on a continuous special at Safeway for $6.98 – YUM!)

You know, grocery stores should really start screening people at the door, especially in this economy, asking questions like:

  1. “Are you hungry right this minute?” If people answer “yes” they are immediately pulled aside, pinned down and force fed some sort of scooby snack to prevent them from buying the above said necessities. 
  2. “Are you possibly buzzed?” If so, “shame on you for operating heavy machinery and step away from the shopping cart. Into the holding pen for you and while you wait here to sober your ass up, can I offer you a triple tall peppermint mocha and a bag of Cheetos?”
  3. “Are you jobless, recently laid off?” If they say “yes,” use caution when approaching. It’s very likely they are going through the 5 steps of forced socialization and looking to chat it up with anyone who looks like easy prey. It’s easy to spot the newly unemployed – they might be wearing a Snuggie with level 4 house pants.  After greeting these people, I’d suggest that you compassionately invite them into the holding pen of #2 above. Or, if the pen is full of the jobless that passed before, just smile kindly and hand this person a coupon book.

While I can see that this line of questioning might not be in the store’s best interest, I still think it should be implemented on behalf of the pink-slipped in Seattle. For the jobless and hopeless, it does a two things:

  1. it greatly reduces the number of stray food items (comfort foods) that find their way into our shopping carts. This ultimately saves us money and reduces the number of lonely nights spent eating chocolate and drinking beer for dinner because the food budget’s blown on empty calories that fill the emotional emptiness inside.
  2. this screening also forces socialization for the lonely jobless person, making them feel as if they can still make friends, even if they wander into the store wearing a Snuggie.

After all, the jobless, hopeless and pink-slipped people own lots of house pants, rarely shower and have all the time in the world to keep guests of your store entertained. So, if you think about it, this plan is mutually beneficial. :)

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Filed under Budget tips, Economy, Life, Slightly amusing

Did I peak in kindergarten?

progress_2So, I was having brunch with my family about two weeks ago when my dad whips out my Pupil Progress Report from kindergarten. As I started to read through my progress report, I exclaimed “Oh look how cute this is! I am very good at walking a straight line, have a very good sense of humor and I have extensive language skills!” In fact, my teacher marked me down as being very good (VG), the highest mark, for just about everything, except those things that weren’t yet introduced (NI for not introduced) like “caring for toilet needs independently.” I digress a bit here, but I don’t think the toilet needs thing was being introduced at home yet either because I clearly remember yelling in a sing-songy tone “Mommy, come wipe my bum bum” when I did #2. Good times.

progress_1

Anyway, as I continued to move through the report with a proud grin on my face, something dawned on me and I yelled “Wait a minute. How could someone who can’t wipe their own butt get the highest marks possible? I mean, it says here I have very good large and small muscle coordination, so if that’s really true, shouldn’t I be able to wipe my own rear? And, why did my teacher have to put ‘very good’ for everything? Seems he was setting me up for failure and disappointment! I mean, according to this progress report, there’s nowhere to go but down from here!” My brother, being the oldest of four siblings and the only boy, suggested that I might have peaked in kindergarten. Hilarious, of course, but it also made me wonder whether or not he might be right?  

While we all want to think we’ve progressed as adults, let’s see how my progress report would look today*.

Physical Development – Large and Small Muscle Coordination

  • Can I still hop or skip in rhythm? Now, what would possess someone my age to hop or skip? I mean, most adults work all day and when I did work in an office prior to my lay off, I don’t recall having a recess period where the hopping and skipping could take place. Instead, I sat behind a desk all day emailing people. So, I am pretty sure that if I were to start skipping around the office in between emails, my coworkers would be concerned. They wouldn’t be saying, “oh, look at the fun she’s having!” And besides, I can’t afford another trip to the doctor for a thrown back or sprained knee. So, I guess I would have to change my progress report score from VG (very good) to L (limited progress).
  • Can I still walk a straight line and manipulate stairs, alternating feet? Again, changing my scores here too from VG to G (good progress). I really can’t claim that I am still “very good” at either of these tasks . A lot has changed since kindergarten. For example, freshman year high school, someone introduced me to booze. And, because we don’t get recess at work, where I could have fun by hopping and skipping, I turned to booze as my fun maker (after work of course) and booze will, therefore at times, negatively impact my ability to walk a straight line and manipulate stairs.
  • Can I still hold and use a pencil correctly? Barely. Because I type most of the time, I do find that when I try to write with a pencil or pen, my handwriting blows as does my spelling. So, guess I have to change my score yet again from VG to limited progress.

Personal Development  – Emotional and Social

  • Do I still seek adult help when needed? Wow – I sure hope so! I mean, at my age, should I be asking a child who to call to fix the foundation on my house? So, I guess my score would remain the same, VG. But, if there were an option to get higher marks on this progress report (which there aren’t because kindergarten set me up for failure or non-progress with all the VGs), I would have to give myself a score of SUPER at this “seeking help from adults” thing. In fact, my therapist told me that I no longer need to see her; that I was all grown up now! Ha! 

Health and Safety

  • Do I care for toilet needs independently? You better believe it! This is one area where I have improved significantly since kindergarten, and my score today would be very good to super! Yay for me and more importantly, yay for you!!
  • Do I generally appear to be well rested? If by well rested you mean, waking up with puffy purple and black bags underneath my eyes and jump starting my restorative sleep-deprived brain with enough caffeine to power a small car, then yes I appear well rested.  Never mind the fact that the media reminds me at least 3 times a day of being jobless in the worst economic recession since the 80’s and that my toughest responsibilities are no longer cleaning my room. I sleep like a child who’s dreaming of waking up to find that her entire bedroom has been turned into candy. So, if there were an option on this report to choose zero progress, that’s where I am at today. 

Ok, well…that was enlightening. The above proves that I have made little to no progress since graduating kindergarten and in fact, it seems I’ve actually digressed in several key areas. Thankfully though, the one area where I’ve excelled since kindergarten is “caring for toilet needs independently” and this is an important one if you think about it, so perhaps I should highlight that on my resume. 

*A note to my future employers. If you are actually reading my blog, thank you for stopping by and I hope you had a laugh or two. This post was especially self-deprecating, but it’s all in good fun. I am actually a very bright individual, who works hard and likes to have fun at work. In fact, if you hired me, I would love to hop or skip around the office just to make people laugh. This would of course only be done during my break time or at recess if that’s something your company offers. If you do,  we might be a match made in heaven!

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Filed under Life, Self-deprecation, Slightly amusing

Will work for room and board

Ok so, I’ve spent close to a week here in Chico visiting with my sister who not only bought my plane ticket down using her miles, but she’s also been kind enough to give me free room, board and booze. In exchange, all I’ve really done is the following: 

  1. I tend to her dogs during the day while she’s at work. This includes feeding them breakfast (which is actually lunch by the time I get around to it); letting her dogs out to potty throughout the day and while outside, preventing Ginger from running Buster, the old blind dog, into the pool or a flower pot.
  2. I spend most of the time sitting at her kitchen counter using her laptop to wirelessly mooch off her neighbors internet, as my sister only has dial-up.
  3. I’ve slept not-so-soundly now in two of her beds. Yes, two beds. The first night was spent flipping around smacking lumpy pillows on a very new, very firm mattress. The second night was spent sleeping on the new pillows (I suggested she purchase that day at Costco) in her other guest bed because I thought the first one was too hard. Then,  after getting a few mattress springs jammed into my back a dozen or so times, I took the new pillows back to the first bed at midnight. So, what this all boils down to is that I have now “dirtied” two beds and my suitcase has fully exploded all over one of her guest rooms.
  4. What else…OH! I took the recycling out yesterday, did a set of dishes, grated some cheese for dinner, and picked up all my cycling gear in the living room – all without being asked! 
  5. I’ve also taught my sister how to reconnect with friends of the past through Facebook. She doesn’t really want an account of her own, and states that “I don’t really want connect with them. I just want to see photos of them now and find out what they are up to”. Ah, Facebook is voyerism at its best! 
  6. And finally, I think I bought a round of drinks that ended up giving my sister a really big hangover at work the next day. 

So, as you can see, I have basically been a big freeloader all week! My sister, recognizing this, handed me a real project today to tackle while she was at work. The project : call AT&T and Comcast to compare high speed internet pricing, give my sister a recommendation via phone and then order the service. Easy enough, right? Wrong. This project took me an hour and a half to complete and my sister’s husband said to me “I sure wouldn’t have had the patience to deal with that, but sure glad you weren’t on the clock!” While I laughed, I also felt like I had failed a bit at my first project. But then I remembered who I actually called – a phone company and a cable service provider, both with phone trees from hell and customer NON-service reps who clearly do not like their jobs.

Anyways, my house pants and I are heading back to Seattle tomorrow before my sister asks me to call the gas company to inquire about rebates. She tells me that’s 1-800-this-call-is-gonna-suck.

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Filed under Life, Random thoughts

5 steps to forced socialization

What is it? It’s exactly what it says – forcing yourself to get out of the house and interact with other humans vs. sitting inside all day feeling like an unemployed loser. Here are the steps to making that happen:

  1. You start by peeling yourself out of the fleece Snuggie. While it is very cozy, you cannot leave your house wearing that thing or you will find it difficult to make friends. They may think you are an escapee from an insane asylum and that’s bad.
  2. Choose to actually WASH your hair. Don’t just throw on a hat or spritz your hair with a dry shampoo like Psssssst to cover up the 2-day grease. Be considerate to the people you are about to run into and remember – you are trying to blend in like the other employed humans who wash their hair frequently.
  3. Choose to put on a pair of level 5 house pants or higher. Higher than level 5 would be jeans, but if you no longer fit into those because parts of you have tripled in size during unemployment, then level 5 house pants are acceptable for public consumption. Also note that when when you are wearing this caliber of house pants or higher, you can also pretend that you are simply running errands on your “day off” before heading to the gym like any other employed person would do. You are a very efficient multi-tasker and people with these skills are usually employable!
  4. Very important – brush your teeth people – do not just pop in a piece of gum! While your animals may enjoy your filth, this is a socialization effort and therefore you must try to blend in if you want to make human contact!  
  5. And finally, equip yourself with things to make you appear very busy just in case your forced socialization efforts fail and you are rejected by these humans. At all times, you should probably be packin’ at least two of the following items: PDA, MP3 player, laptop, book, newspaper, pen and paper, and cell phone.

Hope you found this helpful. I must give props to a good friend of mine, a Croatian goddess, herself a victim of this declining economy, who coined the phrase “forced socialization” and told me about “Psssssst” dry shampoo.

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Filed under Life, Resources, Sanity tips, Slightly amusing

Changing the world one blog post at a time

While I have high hopes that my blog will change the world and I have already been asked to be a guest on the Ellen DeGeneres Show, I think I need to set more realistic expectations. Maybe this blog just changes one life at a time, starting with mine and through my stories I keep a handful of others entertained for one day or a lifetime.

Since I’ve started blogging, I have also come across people in the same boat as me, blogging during unemployment. These two sites are particularly entertaining and after reading their stories, it makes me feel better about my new status.

While I am choosing to press pause on the job search temporarily to figure out what the hell I am doing on this earth, it makes me wonder if I have set the wrong expectations. Is it selfish to think that someone has a bigger purpose on the earth and that I should follow my insticts even in this horrible economy?

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Filed under Career changes, Resources