Tag Archives: unemployment

5 Things I Can’t Do Because I’m Unemployed

20 Oct

5) Use the phrase, “Let me check my schedule.”

  • There’s 168 hours in a week.  If I subtract the hours I spend volunteering and sleeping, that leaves me with 100 hours of uncommitted time.  My schedule is emptier than a Taylor Hicks concert; there is no need to ask me if I’ve got time to do something, because the answer will always be, “YES PLEASE.”

4) Celebrate Labor Day.

  • Well, I probably could, but certainly not in the way it’s supposed to be celebrated.  Maybe I could take a break from watching daytime TV and host a barbecue for employed people, telling them I empathize with the struggles of a 60 hour work week “in spirit.”  Then, of course, I’d ask if anyone knows a guy who knows a guy who’s got an uncle/wife/daughter whom I can exploit to jumpstart my own career.  WOO SOUNDS LIKE A PARTY!

3) Feel good about myself at the doctor’s office.

  • When you go to a doctor for the first time, you have to fill out a health history form.  It always includes a section on your employment/occupation.  I do not know nor understand why this is so.  Clearly, doctors everywhere must think that because I have 100 hours of free time, I spend most of it destroying my body, probably by knocking back some UV rays and sucking down tobaccy.  “Hmm, it seems like this patient has developed a serious case of melanoma…oh yes, says here she’s unemployed, there’s our cause, right there.”  What I’m really saying is, I don’t like being asked this, because there isn’t enough room to explain why I’m unemployed.  Remember the Hippocratic Oath, docs?  “First do no harm?”  Well, you are seriously hurting my feelings.

2) File a tax return.

  • The other day, it dawned on me that, in the course of this year, I have not made one dollar.  Not even a penny.  And I probably won’t for the rest of 2010.  Tax forms are a major pain to fill out, but once you’re done, they stand as a beacon of your accomplishments.  Yeah, go ahead and bitch about how much the government is taking from you, but that means you have something they want, and when you think about it that way, doesn’t that feel good?  I am, literally, worthless, so they don’t even bother with me.  Thanks, Uncle Sam, for allowing me to keep all the nothing that I accrued this year!

1) Get a tax refund.

  • The only reason why we put up with paying taxes in the first place is, so that, come May, there is a healthy sized check with our name on it, waiting to be ill-spent on jet skis or Democratic Party donations.  And it’ll feel like we didn’t do anything to deserve it, it’s just an extra special surprise that the government gave us because we were nice this year (they hands out refunds similar to the way Santa hands out presents).  We’ll forget the long hours we worked to get that refund, because they were so long ago anyway.  In your mind, it’s free money! YAAAY! But I won’t be getting a tax refund, since I didn’t file a tax return, since I didn’t make any money, since I am unemployed.  Here’s to you, 2011!  Please don’t suck as bad.

The Unemployment Chronicles

1 Sep

We all have our guilty pleasure reading.  The Huffington Post, the extremely left-wing, sensationalized tabloid of the political world, is mine.  Regardless, they do have some great features, among them being The Unemployment Chronicles.  Much like what we do here at liberalart.us, they publish the stories of recent grads, several of whom went to the nation’s top public and private schools, as they hunt for gainful employment.

I spent a fair amount of time clicking through these videos and journal entries.  I almost felt like I was rubber-neckin’ at a bad accident, slowing down to see just how bad the damage was.  But honestly, I was attracted to these people, my counter-parts, my compatriots, because of the sense of camaraderie I felt with them.  Knowing that it’s tough for them validates my own experience.

The Unemployment Chronicles prove that there’s nothing intrinsically wrong with my generation; we are generally responsible, sensible people who are trying to land our first job in tougher times.  Which runs counter to a huge piece that the New York Times ran last week, saying that we were immature and slow to hit the “five key milestones” that brand us real adults.  Which we’re so not. The economy is crap, and that is a legitimate reason for us to not find jobs, get married, and pop out kids at the same lightning speed you old bats apparently did.  So Gray Lady, I hereby give you license to, as Generation Millenial likes to say, suck it.

Anyway.  Here’s a few videos, with a link to the corresponding entry, below:

Samantha Kreindel, Employed After a Two Year Hunt

Marquez Forrest, Grad Student Looking for Work

Loren Wearsch, Underemployed One Year

WTF Sad News of the Day

14 Jul

How many interview rejections is too many before it gets not only sad, but absurd?  Is it a dozen?  Is it fifty?  100?

Laurie-Ellen Shumaker has gotten rejected 1,000 times. She has a top notch law degree, 23 years of experience, and Multiple Sclerosis (which is not a qualification or an accomplishment by any means, it just sucks).  She can’t even get a job as a daycare worker.  If that doesn’t make you go WTF in righteous indignation, well, I’d like for you to go to the land of Oz, ask for this guy called “The Wizard,” and see if he can give you a heart.  I hear he’s been handing them out these days.

You have to admire Laurie-Ellen’s perseverance.  I’m sure a lot of us would have been inclined to give up after rejection 478 or so.  It kinda makes you wonder, if people like her can’t get a job, who can?  Her story illustrates the job-search frustration.  As Laurie-Ellen brilliantly sums up, “Interviews are like seeking unicorns.”  (Does anyone else think this woman is probably an awesome grandma?)

Her story could perpetuate the notion that job hiring is all basically a crapshoot in the end.  But if it’s all a crapshoot, why didn’t the crap ever shoot on Laurie-Ellen?  Statistically, she should be at least a little poo-flicked.  What are employers looking for that the seemingly perfect candidate doesn’t have?  In the words of Adam Lambert, “Whataya want from me?”

Let’s all move to Wyoming!

29 May

Hey everybody! Look at this fancy pants graph that The Economic Policy Institute just released.

Having spent the last 18 weeks (and counting) in Florida, complaining about my unemployment and eating an offensive amount of packaged breakfast danishes, it seems like an accurate, if dismal, report.

Contingency Plan: In Case I’m Still Unemployed in a Year

30 Apr

In my mind, there are only three realistic possibilities if I’m still jobless come this time next year. 

Note: This is not my real post for today.  I just wasn’t finished yet, and thought, “Hey, instead of being, you know, PRODUCTIVE, I’ll just doodle on MS Paint instead.”  Expect some real, articulate thoughts from me this afternoon.  Which will be a first, coming from me.

The 5 Easy Steps to Getting a Job (So I’ve Heard)

22 Apr

I recently came across a New York Times article that called me out on my shenanigans.  Entitled How to Turn Downtime into Job Offers, it highlights the major issue that encumbers the unemployed in their job hunts: their misuse of time.  We spend it too leisurely or too unproductively.  As much as this hurts to admit, mayhaps watching Bravo’s reality tv buffet is a bit of time sucker.  On the flipside, sending out a flurry of emails and online applications has not gotten me any closer to employment.  So what’s the solution?

These five easy steps, as paraphrased from the article, will apparently find you a job, and thus turn you into a contributing member of society once again.  Yaaay.

1) Find a spot that you dedicate exclusively to job-hunting, and set up camp there.  Be sure to name it something nifty, like “Job Search HQ,” “Misery Obliteration Station,” or “LeVar Burton.”  This is imperative to your success.

2) Get your shit together.  Have all your materials well organized and easily accessible. These include resumes, cover letters, references, skills, and writing samples.  They also include whatever accolades you’ve received in college or during your career.  It’s recommended that you assemble a “success folder” containing these accomplishments and be ready to whip them out during interviews.  Remember, bragging  does not make you a pretentious douchebag if this gets you the job.

3) Mix up your day by dividing it up into three parts: research, meetings, and follow-ups. You should basically be doing a metric butt-load** of research, everything from companies you’ll be interviewing with to finding new networking opportunities.  Schedule daily informal meetings with friends, former colleagues, or career counselors for coffee.  Follow-up with a thank you to any person who’s helped you along your path to a steady paycheck and a 401K.

4) Don’t end your day before planning your next one, or the next three, if you’re one of those overly ambitious bastards.

5) Embrace this long-forgotten feeling of energy and productivity.

Hogsheads, which are just barrels. Lame.

It will then morph into confidence, which you will begin to emanate and thus increase your chances of getting hired.  Once that happens, relish the sweet flavor of victory, which should taste something like rainbows and Christmas.

**Knowledge Bomb: According to my friend Teh Google, a metric butt-load is equivalent to 476.961 liters, or 126 gallons, or 2 hogsheads.


14 Apr

Lately I’ve been noticing that there is a regularity to my feelings (if anyone cracks a menstruation joke, I’ll cut you with a rusty spork).  When you’re unemployed, you’re on a perpetual roller coaster of emotions, and after a while, you can tell that it’s pretty a predictable ride.
This journey can actually be depicted by trigonometry, proving my high school math teacher was right; she swore that this crap would come in useful one day.

Therefore, I present to you, The Unemployment Experience: a Graphical Representation.

clicky click if you want to see.

If you looked at that and all you saw was “blah blah blah math math bitch bitch complain,” here’s an alternate graph for you to look at:

same rule applies here.

Where are you in this vicious cycle of unemployment?