Category Archives: Economy

Shirtless at bar before noon

YES! These guys HAVE to be unemployed. Who else would sit shirtless on the patio of a dive bar before noon on a Tuesday? They must know that Tuesday is unemployed person’s day, so cheers to them! Just wish Li’l Scoop had a camera in tow…guess I’ll have to leave it up to my imagination. Oh dear…it’s hard to look away…

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Filed under Happy Hour, Life, Sanity tips, Slightly amusing

The best job in the world

Several months ago I ran across a job posting that was being marketed as The Best Job in the World, which was basically a brilliant PR campaign and contest for the position of island caretaker for the Great Barrier Reef. I know, right? Where are these types of jobs now and why didn’t you apply, dumb-ass? Well, I didn’t apply for the obvious reason (I had what I thought was a secure job sitting on my ass at Microsoft) and after watching the winner’s application video, I’m glad I didn’t apply because I would have looked like a big ass boring loser (BABL) next to this bloke!

Ok so maybe I was underqualifed for the island caretaker position, but what about this new job posted by the U.S. Department of Labor? You think I have a shot? Comes with some cool perks like 12 weeks paid vacation and a company rocket pack. Really, the only downside to the job is the “hot-tub study” (sounds like some pretty shady shit) – but no job is perfect and beggars can’t be choosers in this job market so how do I apply?

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Filed under In the news, Job search tips, Slightly amusing

Pink-slip workout tips

On a tight budget and can’t afford a your gym membership anymore? Below are some ideas, many of which I’m considering as my pre-paid gym membership expires in June. I know, funny this advice should come from me, the one who couldn’t get the Muffin Top Reduction Program off the ground in April, but I am back at it and brining in reinforcements this time around (in the form of other pink-slippers)!!   

Comcast On-Demand Workouts. Up until just recently, I’ve always thought the On-Demand feature through Comcast was a stupid waste of money until I discovered the vault of FREE Exercise TV workouts, offering programs that range from super easy (1 mile in-house walking) to super cheesy (SexyChair Routine?) to super kick-your-ass pleasy (Jillian Michaels 30-day Shred)! Seriously, there’s something for everyone with yoga, pilates, cardio, dance, kick-boxing, and ab workouts (reviewed at Litegeist) and you do it all from the comfort of your own home, which means that:

  1. you don’t need to brush your teeth
  2. you can leave that drool crustacean on the corner of your mouth and
  3. you can let your muffin top hang out/shake about because nobody’s watching. Just your cat or dog, but they’ve seen it all before.

Press On-Demand, go to Sports and Fitness, the choose Exercise TV.

A jump rope. Does anyone remember Jump Rope for Heart? My Catholic grade school was all about this Jump Rope for Heart program and I remember having to hit up my neighbors for money in exchange for me jumping rope until I wanted to die – it was torture! And now that I am decades older and I’ve lost agility, coordination and lung capacity, jumping rope has become even more challenging! But, once mastered it’s a great workout. Now, I’m not going to lie to you – the rope will leave red welts on your arms and shoulders almost every time you miss a step,  but just think of this as punishment for all the time you’ve spent on the couch feeding your muffin top and take it like a man (or woman!). Once you get the hang of it, you’ll realize it’s a pretty intense cardio workout. Add in some push-ups and sit-ups and you’ll be rolling muffin-top free in no time!

Punching Bags/Boxing. I actually own a heavy bag, focus mitts and other kickboxing equipment, but I have yet to figure out how to hang my heavy bag as I don’t seem to have a spare corner in my tiny house. And, none of my friends want to hold my focus mitts for me because I’m pretty aggressive and they freak out that they’ll get socked in the eye! Regardless, I do still believe that this is one of the best workouts on the planet, so if you have a heavy bag or can find a cheap one on Craig’s List, do it.  Come on – how kick ass was Rocky Balboa? (cue up Rocky theme song now). Ok, yeah his sweatsuit was super cheesy, but look at his abs and arms for god-sake? Helloooo, Rocky ;).

Stairs and Hills. If the weather ever freaking improves (remind me again – when can I break up with my puffy coat?) and you live in West Seattle, look around you people! Hills are everywhere and most have a secret set of stairs nearby! Hill climbs and stairs burn so many more calories than running or walking on flat surfaces. Add some lunges into the equation and you’ll likely end up with booty-lock (when your ass and thighs hurt so bad you can’t walk), but you’ll soon find these activities to be quite rewarding, especially in your derriere! 

Alki Strip. The strip is approximately 7 miles in length from the Harbor Avenue exit to just past the mini-Statue of Liberty and it’s a nicely paved path great for cycling, rollerblading, running and walking. However, when the sun comes out, especially on weekends, Alki turns into a melee of pimps and hoes (mostly teenagers wearing high heels & toting chihuahuas), strollers and toddlers wandering in a zig-zag pattern on the bike path. It gets pretty hairy so exercise early, or exercise extreme caution, especially when you’re on wheels.

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Filed under Budget tips, Diet, Health and Exercise, Resources

Field trip report

This morning I attended my mandatory orientation training at the WorkSource unemployment office on Rainier Ave.  About three or four years ago when I was laid off, I attended the same mandatory training and guess what? It’s the exact same information, only rather than being slightly useful for the job-market as it was back then, now it’s completely useless. Sweet. 

The only new information presented was the tip about using Indeed.com for job-searching online (already got that tip, thanks) and they were handing out vouches for the free training offered by Microsoft (not applicable for me, but thanks).  They didn’t stress the importance of networking – they touched on it – saying that we “should network,” but guess what –  actual networking events (attending a job fair, or doing informational interviews with warm job leads that were uncovered through networking) don’t actually count as “job-search activities.” But, if I attend a WorkSource training that’s useless, that counts. They still think that using the old-school method of applying on-line – dropping your resume into the “black hole” – works best. Totally pathetic, I guess I shouldn’t really be surprised. It was just a bit disappointing and I thought to myself – boy I’d like to work here and whip this hosed up system into shape! Complete waste of time in my opinion and now I get to attend the skills training on the 27th! Yippee!!!!!!

Maybe it was just the Rainier Ave WorkSource, but curious what other people have experienced.

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Filed under Economy, Job search tips, Rants, Resources

Pink-slips are uniting!

I just have to say thank you to all the people who came to the Pink-Slips Unite meeting in W. Seattle today. It’s SO nice to see everyone connecting and sharing their stories of unemployment and I truly believe that together we can help each other land the job we want. If not the job, maybe these meet-ups just get you showered (or some form of it) and out of your house pants in order to connect with people in similar boats. 

The talent in the room is incredible and each of you has something unique to bring to the table. We are all experts at something and we have a chance to really pull together, learn from each other and make shit happen. Looking forward to the next meeting. Once I lock down the details, I will post it on the “events” page of my website.

One final thought. My lovely pink-slip lady (tag line is “the aspiring young novelist”) has a phone interview tomorrow and she is very excited about this job. I just wanted to send her some good energy through this post. And, I will do that for every one of you so that those that read the post, will also think about this person for one second.

Pink-slips (or unemployed people) Unite!

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Filed under Economy, Events, Layoffs, Life, Random thoughts, Resources

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