Thursday, January 29, 2009

What I thought; What I said

I admit it: more often than not, I don't say exactly what I least not initially. My interview, two days ago, exemplifies that personality fault...feature...trait. Here's the highlights from that meeting (my thoughts in italics):

"Hello, Mark. Nice to meet you. How are you today?"

Why are there three of you and only one of me? That water looks good. I’m thirsty, but I need to pee, again. I hope at least one of these guys would be a good character in a book.
"I'm fine. Thanks for asking."

"First of all, let me tell you about our organization. Most of the IT you have any questions about that?"

It's really nice outside. If I lean to the right just a little, I can see 2 clouds in the sky. The one on the left sort of looks like a giraffe tearing off leaves from a tall tree (the cloud on the right). I like giraffes...and elephants...probably elephants better.
"No thank you. That was very helpful."

"Mark, let me ask you a technical question: if you had a SQL Server would you do that?"

In the big scheme of things, do you really think that your question has any relevance? Database, schmatabase. Wouldn't a better question be something like: why are we sitting around here doing this when we could be out changing the world for good or at least enjoying ourselves?
"That's an excellent question, Ted. I can think of at least 2 possible solutions to the question you posed. My first choice would be to create a stored procedure that mimics..."

"Good answer, Mark. Let's move onto something more complex. What if the application and database layers were merged by a programmer who was in a hurry and you needed to..."

M e r g e, merge...merge...that's a weird word...the more I think about it, the weirder it gets. Maybe a good name for a book where aliens intermarry with humans - THE MERGED. Nah, that's just stupid. Wait, if everyone lived under water, it could be called THE SUBMERGED…stupid on steroids. Stop smiling!
“Interesting problem. I would probably reverse engineer the processes back into their original…”

“Just one last question, Mark. With all your years of experience, why do you want to work on these projects with us?”

Question Mark…that’s funny. Honestly, I would rather be a best-selling author who makes his living writing and connecting with readers. I like people and I like you, but let’s face it: I’m just a mercenary who needs money to pay bills. I put up with software development and it puts up with me. If there was any way to not work here, I would definitely choose that. But since it seems to be the only feasible option available to me that meets my requirements (i.e., 40 hour week, technology I’m comfortable with, the probability that I can do this job and still have some time and energy to do other things), I think I should man-up and do what I need to do.
“I was hoping that you would ask that question. From what I can tell your technology platform and needs fit perfectly with my many years of experience and expertise. I think I would be a great addition to your staff… Also, I have a full life outside of work – I write fiction, I’m married, etc. – and the work here seems like something I could apply myself to during the day, be productive, and when 5:00 comes around still have some mind and energy left to engage the other important areas of my life.

“It was a pleasure to meet you, Mark. You are more than qualified for this position. Thank you for being so upfront and forthcoming with us. We have other interviews this week and will probably make a decision this Friday. You should hear from us no later than next Monday.”

I wish I would have been more forthcoming. “More than qualified” = overqualified. I really, really need to pee. Yay, we’re finished! They seem a bit tired. I wish they were happier…I wish everyone could be happy. All things being equal, I actually would like to work here…I like them…I feel for them. It was a pleasure meeting them.
“Thank you for your time. I know you have plenty of work to attend to and this cuts into your day. It was a pleasure meeting you. I hope to hear from you soon. Thanks again...oh, one more thing: can you tell me where the restroom is?”


jls said...

i think that at your next interview you should reverse them: say the things in italics, and think the things in quotes. could be an interesting exercise.

Mark Adair said...

"That's a great idea!"
Has she lost fer f@#$ing mind? She knows I don't have the cojones to do that...and way too much English in my blood.

jls said...

Whatever, Dad.