I GOT THE JOB!

29 Nov

This is me right now. Except not in a wedding dress. That’s just weird.

Remember that time I started an unemployment blog and wrote about five posts and then never wrote anything again? Yeah, me neither. But for those of you who do remember that, let me explain. Things got pretty busy for me after I took on two different internships, so between working five days a week and trying to keep up with Bitch Beer, Red River Noise, and my social life, I didn’t really have time to write about the perils of being unemployed.

But today, I come delivering good news. It’s been six and a half months since I graduated college, but I FINALLY GOT A JOB! And not some BS part time job or internship or retail job. A real job. With a salary and benefits. An adult job as Communications Manager at a local company.

For those of you who know me well and know how difficult those first few months after graduation were, you know how much this job means to me and how hard I’ve worked for it. This job means I can actually pay my student loans in January and I can pay all my bills without worrying if I’m going to go into the red and when my friends want to go to happy hour, I can finally stop being the lame girl who always replies “sryz 2 broke 4 HH. LOLZ” (Just kidding, I would never text like that. Gross.) And, best of all, I can now buy my plane ticket to spend New Year’s Eve in Denver with a certain someone.

So, as I am not longer unemployed, this blog will once again become inactive (as if it hasn’t been for the last few months). I’m sure one day I’ll find another good use for it as I always do. Until then, thanks for reading, and please excuse me as I continue to scream and shout and jump on my bed in excitement.

I love unemployment because…

30 Aug

This is my weekend.

I complain a lot about being unemployed and for good reason – it effing sucks. But in the 3.5-ish months since I’ve officially been out of a job, I’ve noticed there are some great positives about not having a full time job commitment because, I mean, who likes commitment anyways? Ew.

I Literally Can’t Afford To Be Fat
The other week, I had three different people invite me to get drinks with them, but because I’m unemployed and therefore have no money, I had to turn them down. While that does suck majorly, the positive was that I didn’t spend the evening filling my belly with sweet, sweet yet unnecessary carbs from beer and Easy Tiger’s beer cheese.  And my waist thanks me.

Weekends Just Went To 11
I work in two different offices Monday-Friday, and while neither of them majorly sucks (one more than the other), it’s still an office job. So from Friday afternoon when I get off work until Sunday night whenever I go to sleep (or Monday night this week, wassup Labor Day weekend?!), the only thing I’m thinking is, “What is the most enjoyable thing I could be doing right now?” Unsurprisingly, this has led to some bad ass weekends.

Cooking
I’m going to be honest here, I’m a pretty bad ass chef. So now that I’m unemployed and have so much more time on my hands, I have the opportunity to really expand this talent. And because I have no money to buy a lot of groceries, I’m learning how to be creative with whatever food I can scrounge up in the fridge. Like the other day, we had practically no food in the house except an avocado and one egg. So I put them together with some flour and made fried avocado slices. And then I ate them and had a foodgasm. Suck it Trudy’s.

Standards
Because I’m only an intern at both jobs, my standards are much different than a regular employee. Unlike a regular employee, when 6 pm hits, I’m outta there. There’s no such thing as sticking around to get a little more work in or overtime. In fact, my paid internship is like, and I’m paraphrasing here, “Get the eff out,” because they don’t want to have to pay me more. And when I’m going to be out of the office for something like the Great American Beer Festival in October, it’s NBD. I’m just like, “Hey I’m not going to be here this day,” and my boss is like “Cool, have a beer for me,” and I’m like, “Will do.” That may not be exactly how that conversation went, but that’s what I like to think she was thinking.

College Nostalgia
Last summer and all through my last year of college, I had this mind set that I had to have the time of my life because when I graduated and “became an adult” and got a “real job,” I couldn’t pull the bullshit that I did in college. Well, I didn’t automatically turn into a real adult and I definitely don’t have a real job, so let the bullshit commence.

Would I give up everyone of these things for the security of a good job with consistent pay and benefits? Uh, duh. But that’s not what life’s handed me yet, so I’m staying positive about what I have. You know what they say, when life hands you lemons, grab a Lone Star and make a shandy.

Take a step out of your comfort zone, eh

23 Aug

“Oh, Canada, my home and native land.” Aaaand that’s all I know. Thank you That 70′s Show.

Like I’ve said before, unemployment has taught me a lot. There’s been the lessons you’d expect like a deeper understanding of determination, professionalism, and perseverance.

But being unemployed for about 3.5 months now has taught me a few lessons about myself . One being I will do almost anything for a couple bucks (minds out of the gutter, please). Take last night: a friend said he’d pay me $300 to run through a fountain we walked past. It was dark, no one was around, and let’s be honest, I’ve run through plenty of fountains for free, so I was down. Then on another occasion, the same guy dared me to eat a whole bag of these weird Indian snacks for $20, and you know me, I’ll eat anything as long as there’s no meat in it. Unfortunately both times this guy couldn’t put his money where is mouth is, so I am not $320 richer.

I’ve also learned that I kinda hate hugging people. Yeah, this is stupid, I know, but it’s true. I’m fine with boyfriends and close family members, but when anyone else comes in for a hug, all I can think is, “Oh, shit.” Maybe it’s not so much that I hate hugs, but more that I don’t know how to hug people and so I just end up giving really awkward hugs.

Surprisingly this has come up multiple times in the past few days with coworkers and one of my bosses. I’m much more of a high five kind of person, but if hugs are going to be a normal thing, maybe I need to step out of my comfort zone and learn to hug like a normal person, which actually leads perfectly into my next lesson.

No one wants to step out of their comfort zone. It’s warm and cozy and free of any awkward moments or uncomfortableness. But one of the most important lessons I’ve learned while being unemployed is that you have to open your mind and step out of your comfort zone if you’re going to make it.

A few weeks ago I stepped out of my comfort zone and went to a networking event that my internship was sponsoring. I hate networking events because all you do is stand around and try to make conversation with people you don’t know, which I’m REAL bad at. But because I stepped our of my comfort zone and went to the event, I ended up meeting a bunch of people who work at the company where I was about to start interning. So the following week, I started the new internship and felt so much more comfortable because I already knew some people.

But I may literally take the biggest step out of my comfort zone in a few months. Both of my internships end this coming December, and if neither one has the resources to hire me full time, I’m going to have to go somewhere else to find employment, and right now that somewhere is looking like Canada.

You may be asking, “Why Canada?” Throughout my job hunt, I’ve met a few sources who are experts in the PR world, and one of them tipped me off that Canada is currently in desperate need of PR professionals. At first this devastated me, and I wanted to cry. But after mulling it over in my head for a few days, I realized Canada could be perfect for me.

Think about. I’ve lived in Austin my entire life, so I know nothing about world culture or even the culture of living in another state. I didn’t even study abroad in college because I was dating some boy or had a job or some other dumb excuse.

Now I have nothing to tie me down here. No boyfriend, no job, no school, no obligations. Yeah, I have a lease, but seriously guys, my place is a STEAL, so I know I wouldn’t have a hard time finding someone to take it. And yes, I would miss my friends and family terribly, but I could just use Facebook to stay connected with them like it’s intended for, instead of using it to read about every stupid detail about people I don’t care about. And I know my parents are going to live in their house until they die so I could always come back to Austin.

Plus, I could be the new Robin Scherbatsky! We’re both brunette white chicks with a love for beer and cigars who left our home country for our dream job. I mean, who wouldn’t want to be Robin?

So while Canada is still several months away and not something I’m really looking forward to if it comes to it, I’m prepared to say fuck you to my comfort zone and move to Canada if it means making my dream of working in PR become a reality.

The upside of rock bottom

7 Aug

“When we hit our lowest point, we are open to the greatest change.” – Avatar Aang

I hate when you’re at a low point in your life and people say, “You can only go up from here.” I’m the kind of person who on the outside is saying, “Yeah, thanks for that pick me up,” but on the inside is thinking, “Oh, it could get worse.” I could die. That would be worse. I could get cancer. Martians could hijack Curiosity and come to Earth and kill us all. Someone could steal my identity – although as a broke, unemployed college graduate, that wouldn’t be very beneficial to anyone.

I hit a pretty low point at the end of June. I had been out of school for about a month and a half, I had applied to countless jobs with very few responses and absolutely no yeses, and although I had finally secured a summer internship, it was unpaid with a pretty far commute. To top it off, on the first day they told me the internship could not turn into a full time job. The worst thing about being unemployed isn’t the fact that you have no income and soon your bank account will read $0; the worst thing is the mental discouragement that comes with constantly being turned down because you’re too young or don’t have 5 to 10 years of experience.

Then while all of this was going on, my boyfriend broke up with me. That was kind of it for me. I stopped my job hunt. I abandoned my dream to become a public relations professional. I was even considering moving back in with my parents – yeah, it was that bad. I felt like my whole life was caving in on me, so I just collapsed with it.

Then after five days of  this pity party for one, I woke up and realized how much of a drama queen, mopey little bitch I was being. I realized I couldn’t let one person redefine my life and my goals, and I reminded myself that I didn’t go to college for four years so I could go back to being a cashier at a hardware store. So I got out of bed, showered for the first time in almost a week, started running every morning again, and spent all my newly found free time (thanks to a lack of guy in my life) rededicating myself to my job search.

And you know what? Things didn’t get worse. They got better. Last week I started a new PAID internship, which I’m absolutely loving. AND in one day, two different companies offered me fall internships to replace my summer internship, which is ending this month. AND a completely different company said they’d like to set up an interview with me. AND over the weekend, my brother’s band’s producer asked me if I’d like to work with him and his production company later in the year.

While it hasn’t been any fun, unemployment has taught me a lot of things, but this may be the most important lesson. Like Aang said, when we hit our lowest point, we are open to the greatest change (Side note: if you don’t know who this Aang is, I suggest looking into Avatar: The Last Airbender and then The Legend of Korra. Trust me, it’s worth it). Hitting our rock bottom can show us what truly matters to us and how hard we’re willing to work for it. And while I wouldn’t say I completely hit rock bottom, I think hitting that low point gave me perspective and was the best thing that could have happened to me. Well, ya know, besides getting a job.

Let’s talk about internships

31 Jul

Whipped.

Internships can be your BFF or your worst frenemy. They can open the door to new experiences and employment or they can suck you dry and leave you hating the field you once loved. Interns can be thought of as vital additions to the team, or they can be thought of as the bitch, the gopher, or just referred to as “hey, intern.”

The point of an internship is to gain professional experience that will help you get a job in the field you want. No one is born knowing how to be a producer or a designer or a journalist. You go to college to learn the theory of your desired profession, but internships are supposed to give you that on-the-job, real world experience that no book can teach you.

Internships can be an amazing help to anyone just starting out. They can not only teach you how to do your future job, but they are also a great way to network and gain contacts in your industry. And often times if you do everything right – wear the right clothes, have the right attitude, show up at the right time, get to know the right people – internships can turn into full time jobs.

Unfortunately, some companies take advantage of interns. Now, I’m not talking about paid internships. If you pay me and I can list your company on my resume, I will do anything. N-E-THING. Well, almost anything. Make coffee? No problem, I make great coffee. Pick up your dry cleaning? Yeah, whatever you say. Babysit your kids? Sure, I’m great with kids, and I just see it as practice for whenever I get knocked up. But take away that money, and hell no.

No, I’m talking about unpaid internships. And not all unpaid internships. I mean, I have an unpaid internship. In fact, I wrote the majority of this post in between assignments at after my unpaid internship today.

Unpaid internships are like guys. You don’t just pick the first one that promises you a good time. You have to be picky until you find a guy that works well with you. Do you have personalities that mesh well? Do you have similar interests? Will he take care of you when you’re sick, or will he say, “Oh, babe, I’m sorry…can you make me a sandwich?”

Internships are the same way – you have to know what you’re getting into. Know that internship interviews aren’t just about the company; they’re about you too.  Ask questions about the company, know exactly what kind of work you will be doing, and if you can, talk to some of the employees to get a sense of the company’s work environment.

Just like guys, if you find an internship that works well for both sides, you could be looking at a long term commitment that could make you happier than you ever imagined.

Welcome to unemployment. Population me.

25 Jul

This blog has been many things. Twice it’s been a school blog for two different classes. Last summer it acted as a  record for my summer adventures. And now it’s going to chronicle my latest endeavor: unemployment.

When my last semester of college began in January, I was sure I would graduate with a full-time, adult job. I had a great internship that I loved, and I did it well. I was positive the company would hire me, but when graduation time rolled around, they just didn’t have an open position. Then all of a sudden, it was May 12, I was graduating, and I had no job.

No one plans on being unemployed, and no one prepares for it. There is no Unemployment 1301 or “The Top 5 Best Ways to Enjoy Unemployment.” If you’re lucky enough, you’ll never have to go through a period of your life when you’re unemployed, when you’re constantly checking your bank account, when you have a countdown that ends in being flat out broke and being forced to ask your parents for money, or worse, moving back in with them. Luckily for me, I haven’t had to do any of that. Yet.

But I’m not reviving this blog to bitch about how I don’t have a job. This blog is about humanizing the unemployed. After being out of college and unemployed for about 2.5 months, I’ve got a sense of how unemployed people are seen. Honestly, some people think we’re just like Big Fat from Workaholics: fat, lazy, no ambition, mooching off others, living in a basement with a lot of cats, eating churros, and masturbating our lives away. True, I kinda sorta live in a basement. And I have a cat. But that’s where the similarities end.

A lot of people tell me to just get a job, any job, so I don’t have to worry about money. But I don’t want any job. I want THE job. I want my career. I have goals and dreams, and I’m hard-headed and stubborn, so I will do whatever it takes to make those dreams come true, even if it means going through a very uncertain and unsteady time in my life. I didn’t go to college for four years and take on multiple student loans and have my family sacrifice so much so I can take up my old position as a cashier in a hardware store.

For me unemployment means not settling. It means waking up everyday and starting the hunt: applying for jobs, emailing out my resume, calling companies, checking career sites. And you know what? It’s all beginning to pay off. So while it may not be true for everyone, but for me and for many of my fellow graduates, unemployment doesn’t mean we’re lazy or worthless. It means we know what we want, and we’re going for it.

R.I.P. Summer 2011

29 Aug

It’s official: summer is over. I had my first class of my last year of college this morning at 11, and that’s when it really hit me that my freedom is gone. Now it’s back to the daily grind of classes, papers, boring textbooks, and all that jazz. But even though all of that is kinda depressing, I can’t be too upset. I mean this summer was pretty freaking awesome.

At the beginning of the summer, I set a goal for myself to make this summer, my last summer, the best summer ever. Well, ladies and gentlemen, I think I accomplished my goal. I crossed off almost everything on my summer to-do list, way more than I actually expected to. Road trip? Check. Warped Tour? Check. Tan lines? Huge freaking red check. Downtown? 100 checks. Summer romance? I guess I’d give that a check. Or two. Basically, the only things I didn’t get a chance to do were swimming at Reimer’s Ranch and cliff jump at Pace Bend Park, but that’s more Texas’s fault than mine.

Looking back on it all, this felt like a very long summer. In a good way, of course. I was able to fit in so many awesome things like Colorado and Port Aransas and the HP 7.2 midnight showing and all the live music I got to see and just doing stupid, fun things with friends.

Even my last day of summer was pretty awesome. I spent the afternoon at Frank, the hotdog place downtown, eating veggie dogs, drinking beer, and watching a StarCraft tournament as part of an event call BarCraft. Now, I don’t know anything about StarCraft, but I do know that I have a thing for cute nerdy boys. And were there some cute nerdy boys there. But the game was actually pretty cool. To put it in terms that I can understand, it was kind of like the Super Bowl of StarCraft. Everyone there was super into StarCraft, and if something exciting happened in the game, people would start yelling or cheering at the TV. And all their StarCraft, nerd lingo was pretty cute too. Then I brought the night to a close with a little sushi, swimming, and Jim Beam. (I want to give a big thanks to the boy who made my last day so enjoyable and unforgettable. I couldn’t have imagined a better way to end my summer.)

And with that I say goodbye, summer 2011. You’ve been real good to me, and I’ll miss you. Until next year, au revoir, adios, sayonara, adieu.

Likes: The Cinema

26 Aug

One of the best things that came out of this summer was The Cinema. Started by Leighton Antelman, Lydia’s male vocalist and lyricist, and producer Matt Malpass, The Cinema is the perfect soundtrack for lazy summer days by the pool or night cruising with the windows down and the hot summer air whipping through your hair.

The Cinema’s sound is what I’d call chill electronica. While the duo’s sound has that dance-y electronic beat that refuses to let you sit still, it also has a laid-back, mellowness to it, which makes it the ideal background music for your end-of-the-day relaxation time or morning runs.

The Cinema is one of those bands that gets under your skin, stuck in your head, and creates a mild addiction for which there is no cure. I mean, look at me; I’ve only had the songs “The Wolf” and “Kill It” since late May, and I’ve already played each more than 80 times. My brother even came over the other day while I was listening to The Cinema, and said, “Wow, still haven’t gotten sick of these two songs yet, have you?” And honestly, I was listening to them while I wrote this.

But I think what really makes The Cinema so addicting is Leighton’s voice. The boy can sing. He has a very high range, but unlike a lot of male singers who can sing high, he’s able to incorporate his masculinity into his voice, which helps avoid the whole is-that-a-girl-or-a-guy situation. Also, and this may just be me, but the way he pronounces his words drives me the good kind of crazy. He takes special attention to draw out every syllable, making every word last a little bit longer, and especially prolongs all of his S’s, as if he’s teasing fans before he reveals the next word in the song. I’m just going to be honest and say his voice is incredibly sexy.

So far, The Cinema has only released four songs, and each one has been just as amazingly addictive as the last – even though “The Wolf” has definitely become my summer anthem. Luckily, I’ll soon be able to get my The Cinema fix without listening to the same four songs over and over again. Yesterday the band announced that they’ll be releasing their debut album My Blood Is Full Of Airplanes on September 13. Let the count down begin.

I’ll miss you, Port A.

22 Aug

I'm not good at skim boarding, but at least I didn't completely bust it at any point.

It’s a scary thought, thinking about summer ending. It’s kind of like that scene in Star Wars where Luke, Leia, and Han are trapped in that garbage collection room. The walls begin to close in, your claustrophobia starts to grab you, you see the inevitable end coming closer every second, and you know there’s nothing you can do to stop it. Or at least that’s how the end of summer makes me feel. But this past weekend helped me combat this anxiety, if only for a few days.

I spent the last four days in Port Aransas, and it was definitely one of the best ways I could think to say goodbye to summer, freedom, and having almost no responsibilities. I love Port Aransas, as I’ve gushed before, and once again, the cute little beach town did not disappoint.

The guys got tangled up with this man of war on our last day at the beach.

Everyday we spent there was full of non-stop carefree enjoyment/partying. Mornings consisted of early morning pong tournaments, refreshing mimosas, and yoga in the living room. Then when we could all get dressed and in the car, the rest of the day would be devoted to beaching it up. I spent so much time just chilling on the sand and in the waves, sipping on some Daily’s and just basking in the glory of pure freedom. I also skim boarded a lot (or at least tried to skim board – I’m not going to even try and lie about being good) and enjoyed splashing through the waves.

But I didn’t spend as much time in the ocean as I wish I could have. The first day we got to Port A, before we had even finished unpacking, we jumped in our swimsuits and went straight to the beach. Once we got there, all the girls swam out in the water and were just floating around, chit chatting, completely unaware of the danger lurking below the water. I don’t know who said it first but all of a sudden someone was screaming “Shark!” and I looked down in time to see a small, man-eating shark making a figure eight through all of us. It was the scariest moment of my life. For what felt like the longest period of time, I was glued to the sand and I couldn’t make a sound. Then I snapped out of it, screamed like a little girl, and ran for the shore. After that it was just a little bit hard to get too far out in the water.

I'm gonna miss that pretty little beach.

The only bad part of the whole trip was the terrible sunburned I acquired. After the first full day we spent on the beach, I went home, looked in the mirror, and saw a lobster standing in front of me. This is the worst sunburn I have ever had. For one, I look like a brunette Elmo wearing a little white bikini. But even worse, I have never experienced a sunburn so painful. Sleeping hurts. Lifting my arms up hurts. Sitting on the couch hurts. Wearing a seat belt hurts. Showering hurts. Even just wearing clothes hurts. But thanks to my European ancestors, my skin will be red for the next day, tan for two more days, and back to white before fall semester starts.

But besides that, it was an awesome trip, and a great way to start off my last week of summer.

I’m going to the beach.

17 Aug

This isn't Port Aransas. It's a picture of the beach in South Padre that I took last summer. But I needed a good photo of the beach, and it's all I got.

Someone once asked me, “Mountains or beach?” I of course answered beach. I love the beach, but until recently I thought I was going to have to go all summer without seeing sandy beaches and salty waves. But, fortunately, that’s not going to happen.

Tomorrow morning I’m hopping in a car at 8 a.m. and heading to Port Aransas with a few friends. We’ve got a total of 8 or 9 people going down to the coast, and we’re all staying in this cute little beach house that’s walking distance from the water.

Port Aransas is one of my favorite Texas beaches. It’s not the prettiest beach, but I love its cute tiny beach town vibe, and if you look hard enough, you can find some really beautiful beaches. I also haven’t been to Port A in five years, so I’m really excited to be going back.

This trip is going to be awesome. It’s pretty much my last blow out of the summer, so I am determined to have a really fun time. There’s going to surfing and skim boarding and early morning running down the beach and doing yoga on the beach. And of course there’s going to be late night partying. But that’s a given.

Hopefully I come back to Austin next Sunday tanned and ready to accept that I have one week left until the fall semester begins.

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