Monday, August 28
Had an interview today. Well, I say interview, but it was more me trying to leave for two hours. I wasn't even willing to prepare for it; last night instead of getting my portfolio together I cleaned my office and started a new song. (which is kind of cool, actually.) So this morning instead of working on my book I just printed out a new copy of my resume and decided not to bother with the portfolio. Good instinct; it never even came up in conversation. I didn't even leave the resume.
The day started off all shitty and rainy. The rain stopped and I walked in the damp gray to the huge old warehouse building in a sketchy neighborhood literally on the other side of the tracks. As I tried to find the door a pane of silvered window glass fell from a high floor and smashed about ten yards from my feet. I stepped into the creepy vestibule, got into the depressing slow elevator and eventually got up to the floor where the door opened onto the land that time forgot. Hueueuege room with noisy machinery at the far end, some old desks here and there, pictures of children tacked to whatever pillar or post was closest. Sad plants trying to get some light from the filthy window and not really managing to do that. A woman saw me and brought me to a little room with a big conference table and rolling chairs which didn't really roll over the uneven tiled floor. On the walls there were a dozen or so art prints in rickety frames, mostly Picassos, all shopworn and sun-faded to blues and yellows on beige. This was especially weird since there were no windows in the room.
The boss man came in, nice enough fellow in his 60s. A little odd and out of touch; we talked about politics and phone trees and how he doesn't use computers and how the tiles in that room were all asbestos. He wasn't really sure about what exactly it was that I did, nor what the job entailed, so after half an hour or so of utterly useless chitchat he took me back to where I'd be so I could meet the main guy in that department.
The department consists of the friend who told me about the job, a guy I know from kickabutt school, and his boss, the Comic Book Guy. One lone G5, a G4 or two, and a couple of G3s, running system 9. And Quark. Shudder. I saw a copy of Photoshop 5. We're talking old school. A big Agfa imagesetter, a huge air conditioning unit with big silver hoses running out the window in the a big wall of those dirty factory windows, with dark paper covering the ones that hadn't been painted over during the Eisenhower administration.
They told me about the job, which seems mostly to be changing the names and phone numbers on business cards. Nothing I can't do. Nothing I didn't do ten years ago. I spent the next hour trying to get out, as both guys tried to show me how great the job was. I watched my friend spend half an hour looking for the Quark file of one particular business card, then do the work on it which took about a minute. Then I helped the Comic Book Guy find a file that was on some other hard drive. Total Virgo nightmare. If I worked there they would hate me in short order because that kind of disorganization is bullshit and I would Do Something About It, stat.
But I don't think that's gonna happen. Big Boss Man is seriously old-school, and when I told him how much I get paid at my current job he started making nervous scribbles on his note pad. I think he was thinking of wages more commensurate with the Early-90s Shit Job atmosphere they were cultivating back there. Nah. I've done that.
To be fair, the positives are: it's a good walk from my house, other than the dodgy neighborhood it's in. I'd learn a lot about the mechanics of printing and what really goes on after you send a file Out To The Printer. I'd probably be able to wangle some really nice business cards for myself. I'd get out early each day because oh did I mention the business day starts at 0800 hours, that's 8 AM IN THE GODDAMN MORNING?
Uh, yeah, so that's not gonna happen. But at least I had a nice walk.3:35 PM