an idiot in london


Monday, 27th March
Models and paradigms

You just have to wonder what some people are playing at.

I had an interview this morning at a firm called (NAME SUPPRESSED). What a shower. I arrived a couple of minutes early, (hard to believe but true) and I very nearly walked straight back out, pretending that I had knocked on the wrong door.

The office looked like a bomb had hit it. There was crap everywhere. Without doubt it was the dodgiest looking office I had ever seen. I was asked to take a seat. On the table in front of me was a sign that said "Do Not Clean Up". Crikey.

Well I was like a caged animal, desperate for a way out. The next paragraph is aimed at nerdy types.

(NAME SUPPRESSED) are an ISP. Their office is open plan. That includes their server "room". In fact their server room has a skylight right above it which can be opened up to let the weather in. However, it is a no smoking office. That means smokers have to go into the hallway (2 metres from the server room) for a gasper. Clowns. The door to the hallway is ALWAYS open.

(Can someone please tell me if this is libelous?)

Anyway, the MD invites me into the hallway so he can light up a cancer stick. All highly professional. I had my interview in the hallway. The position was in sales and marketing. In fact I would be the sales and marketing department. Pigs arse I would. He started talking in acronyms, and using phrases that I didn't understand. Deckchair business? What the hell is that?

I told him that I couldn't do the job. Truth was that he was freaking me out. He then proceeded to tell me his entire business plan. Freak. Didn't even ask me to sign a non-disclosure agreement. Amateur!

Great relief when I was finally freed.

Later that afternoon I had an interview at a temp agency. After I had filled in a massive form I then had to be tested on the computer. Tested for competency at Word and then for typing speed. (Some people get tested for taking speed.) After I had completed those tests I was then asked what I knew about Powerpoint. Well I blundered my way through that test and they offered me a job starting Tuesday, ie tomorrow!

I had rung on Friday, and must have made quite an impression on the two women I spoke to. (Notice how I said "women" instead of "sheilas". I'm really adapting to the lingo!) Apparently they were all looking forward to 3pm Monday when the mysterious Ian was coming in for his interview. Well while I was being interviewed (after the exhaustive tests) the girls in the rest of the office started playing up. I suspect they were all trying to get my attention. It's not unexpected.

They were all singing and dancing around the office (I'm not making this up) and then decorum was restored. One of them came into the room where I was being interviewed.

"Sorry, we've been singing out here."
"I noticed. It was pretty average."
"In Australia, that isn't a compliment."
"Well, in England it's not so bad, so I'll take the English meaning."

So I start work tomorrow. At least I wasn't interviewed in the corridor.