Laughter and books make life a little easier

Fun with job interview advice

In which I go slightly overboard while reading advice for new graduates.

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While I would not identify as a feminist (mostly because of the weird associations of the term), how women get and do not get jobs based on their appearance makes my blood boil. If that is how the world is going to be, then there should be regulations for men as well. Such as, “Thou shalt not go about with a three-day old beard.” Also, the whole tone of the article was sexist as well. What if a guy wanted to go to an interview wearing make-up?

I don’t want to wear make-up and I don’t like how society is trying to force me to do it. I am not ashamed of my skin. I’m sorry if you are so indoctrinated by years of Photoshopped models that you don’t like my skin. Nature gave me these scars. Yes, even the one on my temple that looks like a mini meteorite crater. My normal make-up consists of eyeliner and mascara and if I’m really late and/or lazy, just mascara. If I’m really, really late and/or lazy, it consists of splashing my face with water.

I don’t want your job if you’re only prepared to accept that I can do it once I wear a certain amount of powder on my face. Being neat and looking after yourself is one thing, but I still want to be comfortable with myself, thank you.


This turned into an unnecessary rant. Don’t mind me. I’m probably just overreacting, as usual.


I have the feeling that I wanted to say something else. It was something about the books I am reading… Oh yes! I have now replaced the NaNoWriMo widget in the sidebar with a “currently reading” one. We’re all probably tired of looking at that winner’s badge by now. I meant to take it down at the end of December actually, but I forgot all about it! 😉

At the beginning of this holiday, I made a list of books that I wanted to read. All of them except one were books that I’d never read before. It goes like this: The Hobbit, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, The Book Thief, American Gods, The Well of Ascension, The Hero of Ages and A Game of Thrones. I’d only read The Hobbit before. So far I’ve been able to cross off American Gods and A Game of Thrones (both excellent, 5-stars). I’m making very slow progress with The Hobbit, because I’m trying to make it last, partly because I love it so much and mostly because I know the heartbreak that is waiting for me at the end. As for HP… I’ve made progress up to Order of the Phoenix now, because I need to reread the whole series before I can finally read the last one. So that’s something. Further I’ve failed in my reading resolutions. I keep getting distracted by other books. I finished A Study in Scarlet yesterday. It’s one of my favourite Sherlock Holmes. It’s also the first of the 60 stories and I was again reminded of my mistake to always think of Holmes and Watson as middle-aged, while neither of them could have been 30 in that first story.

Now I’m off to read some more!


14 responses

  1. Nice post, i thought i was the only one skeptical about those silly tips. how can you be calm and smiling and giving tight hand shakes to total strangers and looking at hem direct in the eye…?

    January 15, 2013 at 09:18

    • Exactly. My palms are going to be sweaty if I have to meet strangers and that is just how it is!

      January 15, 2013 at 20:37

  2. Wow, do they seriously put stuff like that in job interview advice? That sucks. Part of the reason I want to be an author is so I can sit around at home in my pyjamas all day, not have to wear pencil skirts and high heels – and not to mention having to sacrifice bright nail polish! Red comes across as classier to me as well, though.

    I agree that this whole idea of women needing to appear attractive so that they have better odds of getting a job seems off. I do identify as a feminist – I just go with the “advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men” definition of feminism – but I don’t think you need to call yourself a feminist to think it’s wrong that whether or not you get a job depends on whether you wear foundation or not. On the bright side, at least the “set out your clothes the night previously” advice was useful.

    January 15, 2013 at 10:09

    • Apparently, yes! Same here, I must say. Or why I am more interested in being a freelance editor than working for a corporation. But that isn’t very practical: to be freelance, you need a platform first. 😉
      Yes, that was probably the only useful to come out of the entire article.

      January 15, 2013 at 20:29

  3. That whole article sucked beyond acceptable suckability levels. I can’t believe they publish stuff like that. Just be yourself during any job interview and try not to look nervous. I guess that’s about it really. 🙂

    January 15, 2013 at 17:50

    • Well, that made me laugh at least! 🙂 I was paraphrasing, but it really did say all of that! Stupid article.
      I’ve only been to one job interview ever for an assistant post at my uni, but I didn’t get the job. And I was super nervous, while I actually knew the people who did the interview, having been to their classes and offices hundreds of times, but I still survived all right! 😆

      January 15, 2013 at 20:07

  4. I say just be prepared. Look good, know your personal info, and be quirky. If that’s who you are, then that’s who you should be. Or… everything Mary said. I agree.

    This must be why people freelance. 🙂

    January 17, 2013 at 04:51

    • Well, you make a lot more sense than that article, thanks! 🙂

      January 17, 2013 at 19:39

  5. My personal favourite on this topic was the advice: “Ladies – if we can see up it, down it, or through it, don’t wear it!” I just don’t see how that only applies to women.

    January 21, 2013 at 01:01

    • That’s good advice, but yes, I agree. It should apply to everyone, not just women!

      January 25, 2013 at 01:37

  6. This is one of the many reasons why I like truck driving. We show up in sweatpants, jeans, and t-shirts–not just while working every day but also when we’re getting hired. Makeup? Nope. Showers? Sometimes, when the schedule permits….

    January 21, 2013 at 20:54

    • I’d like to see someone arrive to a truck driving interview in a pencil skirt… 😆

      January 25, 2013 at 01:39

      • Hell, I don’t even know what a pencil skirt IS. Is it one of those skinny skirts that are kind of tight and go to calf length or something?

        You know what’s cool about trucking? For a lot of companies, we don’t even do the job interview thing. We apply on-line. A recruiter calls us, goes over our history, sends us whatever paperwork we need to fill out, sees if we qualify, then arranges for us to go to orientation. No job interview at all, unless answering questions about what your work has been for the last five years counts. We don’t answer questions like, “What do you consider your greatest strength?” Or, “What do you consider your biggest weakness?” Or, “What do you see yourself doing in five years?” Or any of those other inane questions asked at job interviews. Nope. You just tell ’em your experience, where you got your training, and provided your background check (driver’s history, criminal history, DOT medical exam, drug test) come out clean, your hired. Simple as that. Hell, you can even have some dings on your criminal, medical or driving history, provided it isn’t too serious and still get hired. The only thing you HAVE to pass without question is the drug test.

        So, yeah. Cool beans, no? I wonder why more women don’t become truck drivers. None of that sexist “don’t forget your high heels and makeup” crap for us! 😉

        January 28, 2013 at 06:39

      • Pretty much, yes. And then it forces you to take these ridiculously tiny steps.
        Good for you. I like a practical interview. Who cares about where you see yourself in five years? All they need to know is that you don’t drink while driving, you don’t use drugs and I guess it would help if you don’t get lost easily…? (Now that’s where I fail. I get lost in parking lots.)
        Yep! Cool!

        February 17, 2013 at 22:19

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