Friday, January 06, 2006

"They smile in your face, all the time they want to take your place..."

Copied from my LJ-5/12/05
I went this morning for what I thought would be an interview but turned out to be pre-interview testing. The company makes software for 911 dispatching and municipal governments, and I had applied for a software support position. After our phone conversation last week, I thought the HR chick liked my resume enough to consider me a good candidate, at least tentatively. But apparently they screen all applicants with proficiency tests first. They're supposed to contact me to set up an interview in the next two weeks if they're still interested. These people are not playing.

I can't remember the last time I took a standardized test like this one, possibly my ACT in high school. Boy, has my brainpower diminished since then! The tests had lots of abstract/concrete thinking questions. "Choose the answer that best decribes the meaning of this saying: The early bird catches the worm." There were a fair amount of logic questions. "Some of John's neighbors are dentists. Some of John's neighbors are Republicans. Mark the following statement as true, false or undetermined: Some of John's neighbors are Republican dentists." There were many analogy questions. "Hope is to despair as joy is to..." A whole section had series of letters or numbers for which you had to supply the next in the pattern. Most were moderately easy to decipher. Same with the "which shape comes next in the series" questions. Some of the word problems really tripped me up though. Lord knows I despise math, and they didn't give us any scratch paper to work out the problems. Some required solving algebraic equations, and there's no way in hell I can do that in my head. It was a timed test and I didn't finish that section, but the other two applicants didn't either for what it's worth. Still, I left there with a headache, feeling significantly dumber than when I arrived.

Well, it was bound to happen eventually but I wasn't expecting it quite so soon. Loshondra backstabbed me. That's right, the nutjob who acts like she's my best pal, the one who told me, "Don't worry, I got your back," tried to get me in trouble. Durwood, my boss's boss, was in our shop doing his standard screaming routine. When this happens I usually try to busy myself with work and steer clear of the conflict, but this time he was demanding to know who scanned a document that went out to the customer missing 80 pages. Lamont, bless him, feigned ignorance, and Lo might easily have done the same. But she spoke right up and volunteered: "Jeff did."

In point of fact, I did scan the document. On MY FIRST DAY ON THE FUCKING JOB, when I hadn't a clue what I was doing. I was handed a stack of papers and told to put it through the machine, without any other instruction. I did the best I could, saved the results for Lamont and had nothing further to do with that order. Now that I know the bare essentials of editing, there's no way that mistake would get by me. I'm surprised it got by Lamont.

Nothing more was said to me about the goof, evidently because Durwood mistrusts Lo and knows I'm a novice who's had no training. Technically neither of us could be held responsible anyway, since someone else edited and printed the document, then a salesman signed off on it, certifying it to be complete, legible, etc. So it's not like she was protecting herself; Lo ratted me out for nothing. The bitch!

I am trying not to take it personally or obsess over why she did it. It's not like I didn't suspect she was as likely to turn on me as suck up to me on any given day. You can't feel too betrayed by someone you never trusted in the first place. I have to preserve a good working relationship regardless, because she's the only person I can learn my job duties from. Still, it's just one more stressor I didn't need at a job that is already ridiculously stressful for what it entails and how much it pays.

Music: Hubler & Schwab-Vampyros Lesbos Sexadelic Dance Party
Mood: Disappointed