Job Search Nadirs


In a city (LA, holla) overflowing with strikers and "collateral damage," unemployment is on the agenda. After a period of what production people call hiatus (e.g. show canceled, creative differences, internal restructuring, blah blah blah: no work), I'm back on the TV show wagon again, and it feels good to leave the fetid batting cage of the for-all-practical-purposes unemployed. But lest I soon forget what it's like to be, um, radiating lack, I thought I'd take a poll and see if anyone else out there wants to revisit those halcyon times when you were desperate for work.

Back in '95, with my high school career languishing, my parents told me it was time to get a job. The first place I applied was Kroger's--the nation's largest grocery store chain! I picked up their application, filled it out at the counter and handed it back. A week later they called to set up an interview and in I went.

Now, this was the grocery store of my childhood, the one I grew up with and so there was a mild thrill in entering its mysterious recesses, like suddenly finding myself in Johnny Carson's Green Room. That excitement was short-lived, though. The manager--a four-foot-tall woman who used to work in the now-defunct video section back in the middle-late-80s--asked me why I wanted to work at Kroger's.

And seriously, why does anyone want to work at Kroger's?

"I really like lettuce," I told her, because at that moment the smartass in me wasn't desperate enough for minimum wage.

Oh, how times change. I didn't get the job then, but four years later I crawled back to the grocery store and became the best damn Night Stock Clerk the Kroger's union has ever seen. Two weeks in, I quit. Something about dialectics and liberal guilt. I was going to a $40,000-a-year school in the northeast and spending my summers with guys who'd spent ten years getting to $10/hour one $0.25 raise at a time.

Ten years of my own have now passed and back amongst the ranks of the occasionally unemployed, I find myself almost addicted to the occasional job search.

Some people shop for flat screen TVs. I'm just shopping for an alternate life.

So, today I found the perfect job. It pays $50,000 to $70,000 a year, it's a job in communications, defending some "confidential" health care provider in San Jose. The full posting can be found here but I'm giving you all the pertinent information and all you have to do is send your resume and cover letter to the gatekeeper for this confidential employer -- the email address is

Anyway, the best part about this job is that you have to understand the health care industry to represent the health care provider, and even though they pay you $70K and give you paid holidays and sick time and vacation... they just can't afford to give you health insurance.

They really do need communications help, don't they?

So, what is your worst job hunting experience?