Get advice from fast-talking Rova and More FM star Polly Gillespie
Pollyism of the week
Do you ever torture yourself with memories of what might have been? I do and it involves a job interview a long, long time ago ...
Back in the day when I was fresh and fluffy, I applied to be a writer-slashjournalist with TheWaikato Times. I had come back from university in the US and was full of hope, confidence and various eating disorders.
For my last few semesters at “college”, I had written for the local paper and the school’s weekly newspaper. I covered events, did a couple of opinion pieces, and interviewed Miss Teen Hawaii and a guy whose luau had created a small smoke situation down at the beach. Plus I took photos – not well, but I guess they were good enough.
When I came home, I imagined I would just groove up to the Times, and get a job while I was figuring out how to use the drama and linguistics I’d spent years studying. I got an interview and I was so excited ... and so very not prepared.
When the guys interviewed me (I guess it was the editor and chief reporter), I sat on the edge of my chair, eagerly enthusing about my passion for news and people. All was going fairly well when I hit two major road-block questions. What had I been thinking going to this interview?
“Do you drive?” I was asked. “Our journalists need to drive to events that are happening and to breaking news stories.”
“Umm, no,” I replied quietly, but then added, “I’m really good at catching buses and walking quickly.” Great answer, Pol.
The guys looked at each other. “If you could interview anyone in the world, who would it be?”
Why I didn’t answer Colin McCahon, James K. Baxter or even Margaret Thatcher, I’ll never know, but it was at this point I absolutely ruined any chance I had of being the fastest-walking news correspondent on the planet.
“Jesus,” I replied earnestly. “I think Jesus would be amazing. I’d ask him what it was like to be so good at miracles, and being all godlike and stuff.”
I sensed, even as a young, fresh and naive eager beaver, that I had blown any chance of ever working for TheWaikatoTimes. The whole “bus rides to breaking news” answer had probably pre-blown it, but the Son of God answer had both amused them and horrified them. Clearly, they had a fast-walking “Bible basher” in purple jeans (I know, right?) sitting in front of them with big, blue eyes and absolutely no idea about life.
I’m fairly certain I heard cackling and stifled laughter as I shuffled out of the room in my sweaty jelly sandals.
There are moments where I look back on this whole episode and cringe, but my goodness, I’m glad I can laugh at myself now. (I’m cringing while I write that I’m laughing.)
QMyteenage daughter is having trouble with her social life at school. She doesn’t feel like she belongs in any group and I am considering moving her to another school. What do you think?
AIthink that’s a damn fine idea. I know there is the School of Hard Knocks that believes we get tougher when facing tough times at school, but personally, I don’t believe children (teens especially) should be made to endure social isolation no matter what. My parents sent me to my zoned high school, which was single sex. I hated it. I felt very lonely as my best friend from middle school had gone back to England and none of my friends were at the same school. I was so unhappy. My parents took me to a child psychologist who suggested I go to a co-ed school. I did and I loved it. Some schools are great for some kids. Some kids will excel at some schools, while others do not. If they are socially isolated, then look around.
QI work in an open-plan office with lots of different “departments” in close proximity to each other. When someone from another department wants a “private” phone conversation away from their colleagues, they tend to walk closer to where we sit. It’s infuriating. Do we just endure it or is it worth telling them to zip it?
Phoned Out, Wellington
AOh,sweet mother of all offices! I loathe the whole open-plan/hot-desk 2018 work environment. It’s like open-plan classes with 200 students and three teachers – absolute misery and hell for someone like me. I believe private conversations should be held in corridors or booths. I simply think the people doing the wandering over are just completely unaware of how annoying they are being in an already hideous work space. Try saying something assertively but not aggressively or passiveaggressively. I guarantee this architectural open-plan concept will die in the next 10 years.