Reminding: In case you missed it, there's one up for yesterday too.
Watching: Nothing. I made one last trip to Ikea to get the last of my bookcases, so it is my final day of unpacking.
Creating: A belated Father's Day CD for my dad. I'm tracking down all these old songs that remind me of him, songs that we bonded over when I was growing up. And it's not really belated, as my parents have been in Canada for the past week, so it's not like I could have given it to him on time anyway.
Planning: My post-employment purchases. (Incentive, you know.) I've been telling myself that when I get a temp job, my reward will be the Harry Potter DVD, and when I get a full-time job, it'd be TiVo. But with new apartments and weddings and commutes and such, I am experiencing such digital-camera envy that it's knocked TiVo out of first place. Unless my temp job pays more than I'm expecting, in which case I might not have enough self-control to wait that long.
I suddenly realized that I had yet to share another story in the saga of Elizabeth's Employment-Search Humiliation (EESH?). It actually happened last week, prior to the job offer that wasn't.
So, before I even arrived in town, Michelle asked if I wanted to volunteer with her at this bike race, and I said sure, as it did sound like fun, even though we had to be there at 6:45 in the morning on a Sunday. One of the guys who was organizing it is an attorney here, and after I hung out with him for a while at the race, I made my attempt at the networking thing.
He immediately gave me the name of a recruiter he had worked with before. I didn't know much about recruiters except that I thought they only usually worked with the top graduates of top schools, and I told him that I fit neither category, but he brushed that off and said no, this woman would be great, and once I got in contact with her, "all you have to do is sit around and watch CNN and she'll get you a job."
I didn't really think that would be the case, but I was encouraged nonetheless, and about a week later I called and left a message, and the next day she called me back.
And by the time I got off the phone with her, I was seriously considering pursuing a career at Blockbuster.
She was horrible. Some sample quotes (these are word-for-word, people): "You really shot yourself in the foot with your grades." "Firms are going to take one look at your transcript and have a heart attack." "You should think about getting back into broadcasting." (Me: "You mean like in-house counsel at a network?" Her: "No, just broadcasting. You'd never be hired in-house anywhere.")
She also berated me for my decision to take a non-practicing job after graduation: "Analysts are kids just out of college who are thinking about going to law school. I would never have recommended you taking that job." Then she told me it was a "big mistake" to leave the Firm when I did, i.e., before they promoted me to attorney, which they were never going to do but I was afraid of what she'd say if I admitted that.
So I sat there on the phone listening to her, in a state of stunned silence that someone would actually be saying these things to me when they know nothing about me except that I graduated in the bottom half of my class. But apparently that was all she needed to know to decide that the only thing I could do was turn in my license and go find out if they're hiring at 7-11.
If she didn't think she could help me, I can't understand why she didn't just say, "Look, I don't think I can help you." I'm not sure what the point of all that discouragement was.
I seriously almost lost it with her on the phone, and not in the "Listen, you bitter old woman, you don't know what the fuck you're talking about" way, but in the pathetic wimpy sobbing way. Fortunately, just as I was hanging up with her, Michelle called on the other line, and I vented to her and she kept me from completely breaking down and then skipped the gym to go to dinner with me, which made me so glad that I live here now.
And then Corina's husband Wes, a "recovering lawyer" and former recruiter, wrote and explained how recruiters work and how they probably aren't going to be a resource for me, and I was so grateful for that. I don't mind an honest assessment of the obstacles I'm facing. I know the economy sucks, I know my grades are a huge monkey on my back, and I know I'm going to have to work harder than people who were in the top half. I never expected this to be a walk in the park.
But I'm not ready to accept the idea that no one is going to hire me as an attorney anywhere ever, and I refuse to believe that everyone who graduates in the bottom half has to quit law. I passed the damn bar exam, the same bar exam that all the people in the top half of the class passed. I have extensive experience in legal research and contract negotiations and complex litigation. I competed in a national trial competition. I stood up before a judge and kept an indigent client out of jail.
I will be a good lawyer. I could be a great lawyer. No way in hell is anyone going to convince me that it's not even worth my time to try.
Listen, you bitter old woman. You don't know what the fuck you're talking about.