Monthly Archives: April 2011

Highs of the week

Just like church camp, but better.

– I bought a ticket to Costa Rica on a whim Wednesday morning.  God bless paid vacation and savings accounts.  It may be a moderately irrational way to deal with professional rejection and life frustration, but I think it is just what the doctor ordered.  I am going to lie on the beach and read my book and hang out with some monkeys. 

– We may have lost our kickball game (4-0), but we won at drinking.  And really, that is more important. I also made another out.  My team doesn’t seem to believe me when I tell them my skills were limited to that one game and keep making me play.

– Someone told me the best thing ever this afternoon.  Something along the lines of just because you don’t want to buy that particular shoes doesn’t mean it’s a bad shoe.  It just isn’t what you’re looking for.  I will now apply that to all aspects of my life. 

– It’s frat boy free weekend!  While all of my roommates will be lying on the beach in Hilton Head and standing up in their friend’s wedding, I will be the queen of my castle and watching girly movies on their big screen tv. 

-My dad found a job and an apartment.  The important thing being that the apartment is not in my quandrant. 

We ain’t doing lows, as I’m making every effort to be a positive human being.  All day, every day.  Or at least until someone starts to bother me.  TGIF.

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The bastards hurt my feelings

I was trying to figure out this afternoon if I had any more rational actions in regards to the last job I interviewed for.  We’ve surpassed the notification deadline and I’ve sent two kindly worded e-mails asking whether the position has been filled or the expected time line has changed (the first was sincere, the second to make them feel awkward).  I know that isn’t a good sign, but at the end of the day, I’d just rather know for sure.  Anything at this point would suffice— an e-mail, a phone call, a letter, carrier pigeon, smoke signals.  I just want some sort of acknowledgment that they went with another candidate.  And after two interviews and being one of the two final candidates, I think it is the professional, and fair, thing to do.  Just put me out of my misery already.

For many large companies, I understand that with many candidates and the potential of a clusterfuck HR department, these things can be overlooked for a variety of reasons.  But in an office with six people, they are aware that there is still no executive assistant next to the CEO’s office, or that there is.  Or that I’ve been notified, or that I haven’t. 

I’m considering my options for both revenge and a final word— egg their office, prank call and ask to speak the executive assistant, do the rational thing and cut my losses.  Despite knowing the rational thing is the right thing, there is still that 5% of me that thinks maybe, just maybe, something drastic happened (massive flood, their phone lines are down, the entire office got swine flu) and they just haven’t made their decision yet. 

I guess most of all I’m bummed— we had a good feeling about this one.  Now I’m back to square one.  And square one is such a bitch.  I so firmly believe in silver lining that these situations are hard for me.  Yes, I believe that an excellent job will come my way, and know that I have to really work hard for it— and I do.  But I’ve been so firmly implanted in this place these past months that it has become hard to keep a positive attitude.  It’s easier to wallow in my disappointment.  And for me, disappointment is the worst feeling out of the all the feelings.  I know something’s got to give.  It always does.  But when?  I’m getting really tired of trying.  And waiting.

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Word.

Word.

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EXCELLENT NEWS!

I got a phone call from my very dear friend Gigi yesterday telling me that her boyfriend proposed.  I was overwhelmed with happiness for them both— for I adore the two of them almost as much as they adore each other. 

“How very grown-up of you,” I told her.  And then had a moment of panic.  If she was getting married, it might be expected of me in the near future.  She promised me it wasn’t.

Gigi and I have had many adventures— including but not limited to drinking lots of champagne in a hotel room in Florence and drunk Skyping people.  And now she’s getting hitched.  I also have a sneaking suspicion that I’ll be a bridesmaid.  I’m hoping for this:

And I think I’m getting them this for the cake.

OTHERWISE

Today is Administrative Professional Appreciation today.  I am an administrative person and feel it is very important that I be appreciated.  I relayed these thoughts by discussing it very loudly in front of the VP I report to.  Let’s see if he got the hint.

Those are your morning updates.  I’m off to suck down iced lattes and make some copies. 

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my grandfather’s toast

Here’s to the girls that live over the hill

Jill won’t put out, but her sister will

Here’s to her sister

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Weekend Update

I have returned from the land of conservatives and cul-de-sacs well rested, over fed and with a renewed confirmation that my mom thinks I’m a great kid.  I swear I’ve been to Atlanta ten times, but still have yet to really leave my Aunt Annie and Uncle Steve’s house in the suburbs, which suits me just fine.  A weekend of hanging out was just what I needed.

MY BROTHERS ARE THE DUMBEST KIDS ON THE BLOCK

My 18 year old brother Jack— overwhelmed by the full fridge— did a full out raid upon his arrival to the ATL.  Coming across what he perceived to be meatloaf, he heated it up, doused it with ketchup and ate every last bite.  Jack later learned it was in fact duck liver pate.  “I wondered why it tasted so funny,” he said.  Sorry about our appetizers Friday evening.  Note that despite its funny taste, he continued to eat it.  And Tim was jealous Jack snagged the good leftovers.

WE’LL ALWAYS BE 9

My brothers and I are very soon to be 24, 22 and 19.  My cousins Max, Sam and Josephine, who we spent our summers with at the cabin growing up, are 26, 24 and 22.  Yet, we still get sassed at like we are little kids.  Do the dishes, pick up your stuff, set the table.  I think in this instance, acceptance is the first step.  Because we may be “adults” but they still buy better wine than we do and are still better cooks. 

FURTHER PROOF

A couple years ago we were at the funeral home* for Christmas and my mom instructed me to go pick up my brothers from the ski hill.  It was December, it was Minnesota, thus it was fucking cold.  I said no.  She said yes, you will.  I said no, I will not.

She put her hand on her hip, pointed at me and said, “Rachel Shea!  One, two…”  I was up out of my seat and out the door so fast neither of us could believe it.  I got half way to the car before I stopped and realized what had happened.  My mother was keeled over laughing.  Turns out my mother’s still the boss of me. 

EASTER

Overall, Easter was quite lovely.  I wore my bunny dress and we had 31 people over for brunch, which in comparison to holidays with my mother’s whole family, is quite small.  My aunt and uncle’s friends are lovely people, without a doubt, but steadfastly conservative.  I always feel the need to toss in a “Palin sucks!” or two during dinner.

I didn’t know it was possible to consume as much as ham I did in the course of the afternoon.  Or still be standing after that much champagne.  Or for a grown man to stick that many jell-o eggs in his mouth at once (4).  All good things to now know.

ETC.

I went straight to the office after a 7am flight.  Been up since 4 to make the trek to the Marta train and surprisingly don’t look as disheveled as I feel.  My father has officially arrived and found an apartment (luckily in a different quadrant from my own) with a patio that “will be perfect for the turtles”.  Let the family bonding begin.  Also, I keep dreaming about Twitter.  Happy Monday.

*My grandfather lives about the funeral home he owns in Minnesota.  But that is a story for another day.

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Friday Round-Up

THE BUSINESS

8 people are following me on Twitter!  I have no idea what that means!  My new found ability to update people on everything that I’m doing in real time is incredibly amusing to me.

My water is boiling!  I am going to floss my teeth!  I ate meatloaf for breakfast!

Just kidding, I won’t do that.  But I’ll want to.  Follow me @dointhegrownup.

RACHEL, THE KICKBALL CHAMPION OF THE WORLD ETC.

I caught 2 fly balls in a row and assisted in the 3rd out in 1 inning during kickball last night.  I have mixed feelings on my success, as now my teammates will expect repeat performances.  That was it, guys, I’ve maxed out my skill for the season.

“Get up out my grill” has become somewhat of a team motto.  If only moderately insulting strangers always was the beginning of a great friendship— I’d have so many more friends.

After the obligatory rounds of flip cup (also known as dinner), we engaged in a team orange dance party.  I took my chair play skills to the streets.  There was a minor incident over the course of the evening when a member of the blue team was being mean to a member of my team.  I’ve largely learned over the years that in order to have successful confrontations with drunk people acting dumb, you must treat them in the same manner as you’d treat a misbehaving 2 year old.

Assess the inappropriate action:  Are you being nice?

Suggest a solution:  You should probably stop right now.

I also like to toss in some form of threatened physical harm, since unlike 2 year olds, you can’t put drunk people in time out.  Me and Blue talked it out, she promised to stop, I promised to kick her ass if she didn’t, smiled, patted her on the head and went back to my dancing.  I feel that it ultimately became a team building situation.

OMG, THEY ARE HOT NOW

Nat and I detoured on our way home to have a drink with one of my little brother’s friends who was visiting DC for the weekend.  Whenever I see Tim’s friends all grown up and attractive, I have to spend a considerable amount of time reminding myself that when I first met them, they were all gangly and their voices cracked.

HOT-LANTA

From what I understand, we’ve got a full house this weekend at my aunt and uncle’s— their 3 kids, my mom and bros, plus another 10 or so for Easter brunch.  Good thing I remembered to pack my bunny dress.

Back bright and early Monday morning— upon my return I will officially no longer be the only member of my family living in DC.  Heaven help me.

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I joined Twitter!  And have no idea what that means!  You can follow me or whatever you’r

I joined Twitter!  And have no idea what that means!  You can follow me or whatever you’re supposed to do @dointhegrownup

(Did I say that all right?)

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An OK Cupid Dating History

The yo-yo dude:  The yo-yo dude was my first OKC date.  The moment he walked up, I knew there was no attraction.  He was painfully shy and nervous throughout happy hour, so I proceeded to drink (we all deal with nerves in different ways) and run my mouth through the awkward silences.  As we were getting on the metro to go to our respective homes, he pulled a yo-yo out of his pocket and started doing tricks with it.  That’s right, walkin’ the dog right there on the red line platform.  While I was for sure traumatized, it is still a funny story 9 months later. 

The dude I got drunk with:  My second date didn’t fair much better, but at least he didn’t have any toys or tricks up his sleeve.  We G Chatted most of the week (which I advise against, as you run out of all the get-to-know-you chit chat before you meet in person) and made plans to walk around the Mall and go the the Air and Space Museum.  Somehow we ended up drinking a pint of whiskey mixed with Coke out of the bottle and eating vender hot dogs.  And that was that.  

The Dungeons and Dragons nerd:  We met at the Bottom Line one night last summer.  We couldn’t hear each other over the loud music and packed bar, so we ended up cutting our losses after an hour.  I had to go let my boss’ dog out and he had to get to Baltimore for his weekly Dungeons and Dragons game.  After we hugged good-bye, he asked me if I wanted to make out. 

“On K and Connecticut?” I shrugged, “I guess.”  And make out we did in front of the Friday evening commuters. 

The dude I considered stabbing to end brunch:  I met a guy for brunch last fall without much e-mailing back and forth before we made plans.  He again wasn’t my type— pictures can sometimes be very deceiving — and painfully nervous.  Conversation went something like this:

“So, you’re from Ohio.”

“Yup.”  SILENCE. 

I figured my options were either begging him to immediately improve his conversational skills or shoveling my eggs into my mouth at a rapid rate.  I chose to shovel, which was made worse by the fact that he was the slowest eater in the whole mother fucking world.  After 45 minutes I couldn’t take it anymore, paid my bill, waved goodbye and got the fuck out of there.  I resolved never to agree to a first date that involved an entire meal ever again. 

The Kiwi:  I had drinks a couple of times with a Kiwi who was well over a foot taller than me.  He referred to me as a “wee one” and made off handed comments along the lines of “when I was in Haiti with Sean Penn”.  Our relationship was inevitably cut short by my horrendous fall travel schedule, although I do think we could have been very happy together (and Sean Penn could have officiated our wedding).

That is one of the things about online dating— if you meet a nice girl and she is out of town for 2 weeks, you can simply find another to meet your needs. 

The Geeky Giant:  Aptly nicknamed by Natalie, he was 6’2” and had a PHD in Economics.  We had drinks for the first time the night I was convinced I gave Helen Thomas strep throat.  He was one of those smart people that remembered every single thing you ever said and reminded you as such when you repeated yourself.  If you know me at all, I repeat myself a lot. 

We dated around the holidays— and by dating I mean we went out to fancy dinners and then I would fall asleep while watching terrible movies of his choosing.  6 weeks in I wasn’t sure if we actually liked each other or if he actually knew anything about me.  Plus, I’m fairly certain he viewed my inability to control my fidgeting when trying to fall sleep as a personality flaw.  Although I must say, he was phenomenal at the phase out.  One day I woke up and realized I hadn’t heard from him in a whole week.  Brilliant. 

Side note- he plays kickball on Thursdays too.  He was very shocked to see my last week.  I smiled and gave him a hug.  He continued to look shocked.  And that was the end of it.

The industry dude:  This guy and I met through OKC but worked in the same industry and knew a lot of people in common.  He was interested in a position that was opening up in my company, which eventually made things awkward.  While we could have been an industry power couple (!), I couldn’t really handle parts of my life mixing together.  I like to keep things as separate as possible and get really bugged out when they don’t.  Just ask me about when my co-worker dated my roommate. 

The guy who didn’t know he was gay:  I stayed for exactly one drink with this guy, claiming early work obligations the second I sat down.  He had a weak handshake and a flamboyant way of speaking and I’m convinced he just didn’t know he liked dudes yet.  There was absolutely no attraction.  Towards the end of the date, he asked me matter of factly if I’d like to go somewhere and make out.  I told him that wasn’t really my thing (K and Conn make out excepted).

He continued to explain that where he was from (Portland), you had to be up front about these things because girls are so “passive-aggressive”.  I think he maybe meant prude or shy.  Either way.  It was one of those dates that make you feel like karma is coming to bite you.  Hard.

The dude the Hating Dating Blogger hated:  We had drinks one night after work.  I had not eaten dinner, thus proceeded to get mildly intoxicated off a couple of Alagash Whites.  While he was a little on the short side, I enjoyed his company and conversation.  Despite some random text messages following our date, I never heard from him again, although that might be because I spilled the beans about this and his pride was moderately wounded.  Or because I was his little sister’s age. 

The L3:  The L3 and I met for drinks on Sunday.  We drank German beer and shared pretzels while he told me things about his mother and talked about his friends the law students.  We ended up calling it quits after 2 hours so he could go home to study and I was truly too sunburned to be in public.  There was nothing wrong with him, but there was just no spark and we had little in common.  The date was largely unmemorable, save for the fact that he got Brooks Brother’s points on his credit card.

THE END

While a lot of these dates were bad, they were still more dates than I’d gone on the year before (which is none).  Either way, not a good track record.  Which is why after weeks of threats, I am knocking off the online dating for a bit.  It has been officially disable.  Wish me luck in finding a man the old fashion way (in person).

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How to: job hunt

I’ve been job hunting for what seems like forever at this point.  I’ve got the process down to a science— and I believe I’ve become pretty good at it, but not good enough to land another position.  An old boss of mine told me once that you can’t make a career out of job hunting and she is right.  Here is what I’ve learned so far:

1.  It is much easier to get turned down for a job when you already have a job.  No matter what happens, my rent will get paid.

2.  Follow your gut.  If you think you bombed an interview, you probably did.  If your gut tells you that a job will make you want to stab your eyeballs with knitting needles, it probably will.

3.  Always make nice with the receptionist— no one likes a snob. 

4.  Tell people you are job hunting.  I was hesitant to do so but people like to be helpful.  Most remember what it is like to be in this crap situation. 

5.  E-mail the hiring manager if the expected deadline for notification has passed.  Whether or not you e-mail to ask for an update will not change their mind as to whether or not they are going to hire you. 

6.  Always always always mail hand written thank you notes following an interview.  I’ve actually received e-mails thanking me for the thank you note.

7.  Bring a copy of your resume and references.  Some employers still make you fill out applications for their records. 

8.  If possible, find someone in your current office to confide in.  That person can serve as a good sounding board and cover for you when you need to duck out of the office an hour early for an interview.

9.  Buy one expensive suit that makes you feel like you can kick ass and take names.  Despite largely associating professional rejection with my $300 Banana Republic suit, it makes me feel like I can dominate in an interview. 

10.  Don’t forget to smile and have a firm handshake.  Weak handshakes make me suspect people’s character.  I can’t help it. 

And pray.  Because the odds are always against you.  Got any to add? 

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