Monday, May 31, 2010

I Don't Like How You're Living My Life. A Horror Flick.

This video will give you nightmares. Aired on May 17, 2010.

Rated PA-22. Parental Assistance strongly recommended for people above the ages of 22.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

I Have No Shame.

The Setting: The balcony of a touristy mid-town restaurant before the dinner rush.
The Circumstances: Hot30-somethingManagerLady (We will call her HotManager) is interviewing Underemployed for a hostess position.

HotManager: Ivy League! One of my best friends went there.
Underemployed: Oh cool! Yeah it's a great school.
HotManager: She loved it. Did you graduate this year?
Underemployed: No, May '08. Did your friend graduate near my year, maybe I know her?

HotManager giggles with glee.

HotManager: No, no, college was a long time ago for us.

End of scene.

That's right people. I'm so good I even pulled that ass-kissing off.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Another Creepy Visual.

I have seen some pretty damn creepy stuff in the kitchen. Pig heads, sausage creating, terrine making- none of these pork products are creepy in and of themselves, but like the picture of Padma in the post below, sometimes cooking and eating stuff is just kind of weird.

This ad for sausage is kind of disturbing.

Looking at Jenna Jameson slurping an oyster is kind of disturbing.

This ad for beer is extremely disturbing.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

I Guess I Won't Be Top Cheffing This Week.

Last thursday I applied to be a server at an NYC restaurant run by a former Top Chef Contestant. I felt like I knew the chef already and he seemed personable on TV, plus I figured the Top Chef cred would guarantee a busy restaurant.

I emailed in my resume- they explicitly asked for applicants not to send a cover letter- and heard back from them on Friday. They wanted to set up a preliminary phone interview.

On the day of the phone interview I called. Here are the three questions I was asked:

When would you be able to start?
Are there any days you can't work?
Is there anything you want us to know?

Now, I finessed that last question but even so the interview was all of 5 minutes. I haven't heard back from them. I'm not even beating myself up about this one. I barely said anything, let alone anything wrong.

Doesn't Padma look like she just killed something with only her hands and a wood spoon? Something that bleeds chocolate!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

You'll Scream For (No More) Ice Cream!

As we approach 90-degree humid heat today in New York City, I'm sure the city's ice cream scoopers will be sweating too. I have never scooped, but one of my college-educated co-workers at the restaurant scooped last summer and vowed never to do it again.

It go me thinking- it's air conditioned, customers want what you're selling, and you don't have to worry about tips as your major source of income, so there is a little less pressure on every interaction. What could be bad?

It hurts. My friend at the restaurant told me that by the end of the summer she was wearing one of those carpal tunnel wrist guards and dreading every order. Even now, she sometimes gets sore pouring waters for tables. I know how she feels- making espresso drink after espresso drink really aggravates my wrist sometimes from the repeated fist making and hammering motions. I feel like an old lady at 24.

One of my good friends from Ivy League just started a job scooping ice cream in Boston- I hope her wrists hold up. And if they don't, I hope she quits in time.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

In Which I Don't Try To Get More Work In The Industry.

Fellow New Yorkers, the time we've been dreading has arrived. TGIFriday's in Union Square is opening and they are hiring front of house staff!

I found this ad today on Craigslist : New Restaurant Opening- NOW HIRING

I wish that they had put the TGIFriday's name in the post title so as not to waste my clicking-time. For me, restaurant work is challenging enough. I don't think I have the heart to sell utter crap to boatloads of tourists who are just blocks away some of the greatest restaurants in NYC. And I don't want to wear that polo or the visor, or the 37 pieces of flair. This is one case where I deserve my underemployment.

Monday, May 24, 2010

OMG I'm Still Confused. Like, I Can't Even Deal.

I have nothing to write today since after an amazing day off spent with a fellow underemployed friend I have watched the series finale of "Lost." And I'm not too cool to admit that I am stunned and really thinking about what I saw.

All I will say is this: At participating AMC Theaters, movies before noon on weekdays are $6.

And this: I am impressed that the screenwriters of "Lost" held up their end of the bargain for the most part. There was more than enough pay off in that finale.

I will be back to my normal self tomorrow. Let me deal, people, let me deal.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Working Brunch Is Hard.

I work Sunday brunch and often earn dinner money. Alcohol doesn't move like it does in the evening- the occasional mimosa or bloody mary isn't the same thing as dinner where you're looking at at least one alcoholic drink per table on average. The money comes from turnover- and diligent servers up-selling pricey side dishes. I frankly believe we deserve it. Brunch asks you to not only deal with pre-caffeinated customers, but to be at the top of your game from the time you clock in.

I like being busy at work, but I don't like doing it early in the morning. By 10 it's moving at a steady clip and by 11, mobbed. I know it doesn't sound early- but think of it this way. In order to be perky and pert upon interacting with the customers and staff beginning at 9 AM, I wake up at 7 AM so I can fully adjust to life before arriving at work. Again, not awful, but it does mean I don't do much Saturday nights. I'm usually tired Saturday nights anyway because I get home from work between 2 AM- 3 AM Saturday morning from Friday night dinner service. It's a weird life where you go to work at 4 PM, sleep it off and then wake up early the day after. Now I'm experienced with coming in early, but I'll never get used to it. (Remember when I was regularly clocking in at 7 AM?)

Things get spilled on me a lot during these busy weekend brunch shifts. Today: Hot coffee, cold coffee, ketchup, water, and jam. I didn't know jam could spill but you live, you learn, you experience projectile fruit product.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

There's Nothing Ironic About Being Rude To A Waitress.

Here's a secret. Although he makes any restaurant look "fresh," your average hipster doesn't tip well or treat you like a human being unless he is trying to impress his teeny tiny trust-funded no I mean non-profit-working date. These are some food and drink related pictures from the photo blog Look At This Fucking Hipster. And yes, I live in Brooklyn.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Please Believe Me, You Don't Want To Touch It.

Dear Restaurant Diners,

The reason I have an often white but sometimes purple towel on my plate-carrying arm is because it creates a layer between the really hot plate and my skin. You see me using a folded towel to hold individual plate not because I'm worried I'll accidentally touch your food, but because I don't want to accidentally drop the plate because my fingertips are burning.

Why are the plates so dang hot?

First of all, we store them in this heater-thingy. When we take them out of the heater-thingy they are very very warm. When the plate sits awaiting food under the hot lights at the pass, they get hot. The longer those plates sit awaiting food, the hotter they get. By the time the order is up and ready to be run to a table, that plate can really burn. (Side note: so can the surface of the pass- I've burned my knuckles on it, which is a just punishment for having idle hands at the pass.)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Don't Worry, Just Stop Acting Like A Girl And You'll Be All Better.

Like every other underemployed person, my resume is on And I get a ton of advice-giving emails from them. Often they're stupid. This one titled "How Dating Rules Can Help You Get A Job" is just offensive.

You want a job?, it asks its obviously job-hunting readers, stop acting like a girl who can't score a man and you'll be fine!

That's right. The key to getting a job is to: play hard to get, not talk about your ex for fear of current date's self-esteem, remember he won't change but you can, and to not give "it wink wink" away without commitment.

I encourage you all to read the article, but if you don't I will leave you with this quote:

"Business, like dating, has rules of engagement...With the dating game and the job market more cutthroat than ever, I’m up for any advice that helps me get ahead in the hunt. Now if only someone would help me balance my checkbook, I’d be all set."

Excuse me, but if you can't balance your own checkbook you won't be able to keep the job you get anyway because raging morons are expendable these days.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Not Having A Job Sucks. So Does Thinking About The Jobs You Could Get.

San Francisco-based cartoonist Levni Yilmaz has been animating some of my favorite shorts for years now. His series "Tales of Mere Existence" is at turns insightful, inane, funny, depressing, poignant and always creatively illustrated. Here's one from the fall, called "Various Jobs I Could Get."

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

How To Get Fired For Bad Judgement. A Cautionary Tale.

Charlotte, NC

It was a long night shift at Brixx Pizza for Ashley Johnson, 22. After a table had been sitting for 3 hours, forcing her to stay an hour past her normal shift end, they left her an insulting, pathetic and perhaps mean spirited $5 tip. She was rightfully pissed. And she said so on facebook, naming the restaurant in the process. A "friend" from work turned her in. She got fired for violating a policy against speaking negatively about costomers. Sucks for Ashley.

After this story ran in The Charlotte Observer, though, the tables have turned. The internet community has rallied in favor of Ashley and Brixx has gotten more negative exposure from this than they would have for rats in the kitchen. And its going viral. It's being shared, tweeted, reposted ad nauseum. The story reached me in an email from the Huffington Post food writer and Gastronomista founder known as Daphne Dusquene.

I'm so grateful for the discretion my readers have exercised. My restaurant has a pretty clear policy about not mentioning guests, particularly since we regularly serve celebs and industry VIPS. And a quick way to lose that clientele is to have people gawking at them when they arrive. We leak, we walk. I have seen staff and managers both say negative things about our costumers on facebook- never by name. I guess if my managers do it that means its ok...but I'm sure like at all restaurants they wouldn't be afraid of a convenient double standard.

This story only makes me all the more aware of the risks young people take every time they share their voice using the social media that so wholly profits off there loquaciousness. The Brixx facebook page is a digital shitstorm. Do you think she deserved to get canned? Below are some of my favorite comments.

So Brixx doesn't have a loitering policy? I'm going to go to my local Brixx tonight, order a water, and chill all night long if that's the case.

Guess you say you value your customers. Not so much employees, eh?
Please stay in the south...

I'm not sure Brixx should have taken it so far as to fire this employee, but I do agree there should have been disciplinary action. It's all a matter of professionalism and tact. When you're an employee of a company, you ...should know you're representing them at all times. People share way too much online and should know by now that what they post online is public information. (And, by the way, I'm not a plant. You can check my friend count.)

SHE SHOULD BE FIRED, as a waitress and re-hired as the marketing director for concept and execution of the farthest reaching, and least expensive, advertising campaign in Brixx Pizza history. Because of her post even folks in the UK now know about Brixx Pizza.


Call a friend if you need to vent. I'm amazed at the reactions & that people think they have a right to post whatever they want on facebook without consequence.

What rhymes with Brixx and starts with Pri..?

Monday, May 17, 2010

This Is No Joke. Happy Graduation, Class of 2010.

A couple days ago, I read an extremely relevant article The Wall Street Journal (a hard copy no less). As its title suggests, "A Lament For The Class of 2010" illustrates the job market for young, college-educated graduates. It's bleak.

"They will enter a world where they will compete tooth and nail for jobs as waitresses, pizza delivery men, file clerks, bouncers, trainee busboys..."

That's the truth. On average, I apply for 3 jobs a week. Now, thanks to the restaurant that hired me, I even have NYC service experience and I can't get a job serving tables. I've worked at major arts organizations, but I can't get a job answering phones at hair salons. Sure I've got an Ivy League degree, but I rarely even get interviewed for the random admin jobs I apply for. 17% of people between the ages of 20-24 don't have a job. And (almost) all of them want one.

What I found interesting about this article, though, is its unafraid disdain of the Boomer generation (who I imagine make a significant portion of WSJ's readership). I love my parents, but other than their parents (the self-proclaimed "greatest generation"), there is no generation so uniformly condescending towards the plight of young people today than the Boomers who spawned them.

Back when we were employed, Boomers claimed Gen Y-ers make bad workers, entitled and demanding and incapable of understanding why they are at the bottom of the ladder. Maybe its because we were told by said Boomers that we were the most amazing people of all time, that we really could do anything, and that our grades, SAT scores, college acceptances proved it. After having worked really hard to meet the high expectations for us, of course we expected to be rewarded for it. We always had been.

Growing up, we middle-class Gen Y-ers were over-committed hyper-scheduled achievers. Aside from the fact that our battles with underemployment have done a number on our understanding of our capabilities and self-respect, we have never had so much free time in our entire lives. In part because of the Boomer parenting philosophy of "No Summer Left Behind," our brains don't compute with a life that includes day after day with nothing on our schedules. Our post-graduation joblessness isn't a choice. We're no Ben Braddock. You tell us "Plastics" and we'll say, "Insurance!"

"...the legacy costs that society has imposed on young people will be a millstone around their necks for decades. Who's going to pay for the health care bill? Gen Y. Who's going to pay off the federal deficit? Gen Y. Who's going to fund all those cops' and teachers' and firemen's pensions? Gen Y. Who's going to support Baby Boomers as they suck the Social Security System dry while wheezing around Tuscany? Gen Y."

While I don't think pensions or social security are an inherent problem, I do believe they will be if Gen Y doesn't start earning some serious money. Boomers are poised to retire, some having been forced into retiring early, and there's a lot more of Gen Y than Gen X to shoulder the burden.

Hey Boomers : Try finding me a job, and see how you fare. When you succeed, please email me at

The cartoon above is by Scott Santis, former editorial cartoonist for The Birmingham News.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

What Does Underemployment Look Like?

The scene : At the coffee station during a lull in an otherwise busy Sunday brunch service, three women ages 23-27 are all wearing the restaurant uniform. One sips a latte, one cleans coffee pots, and one wipes down the station.

The Lesson : Underemployment is three 20-something women with 5 degrees and a combined 15 years of higher education waiting tables, pulling espressos, bussing tables and hoping for a big fat tip.

I wish I could say we three had a good laugh at ourselves when we realized how profoundly educated our little corner of the world was. But we didn't. We just shrugged and went back to work. I mean, no degree can help us tackle the 8-top that just walked in including a raw-foodie and a child.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Remember That Time I Felt Really Sorry For Myself? My Bad.

I have a small work-related up-date.

Remember that Thursday shift I lost? And remember I was playing it off all cool but really I was freaking out because I thought I was one step closer to living in a box eating discarded McDonalds ketchup packets out of the garbage?

My bad. On re-looking at the schedule I realized I've been relocated to Sunday brunch work. This means that I got traded onto a more lucrative day shift. It also means I'll be a lot busier, but I'm ok with that. Once I'm at the restaurant, I'd prefer having a lot to do.

But how did I make such a dumb error? Besides being generally stressed out about my life which clearly clouds my close reading skills, I'm also not used to looking past Friday on the schedule since I haven't been scheduled for a weekend barista shift in months. We "set the schedule" months ago too and, since I'm no fool, I opted for night shifts where I work less and earn more in coffee land as opposed to the hellish pace of weekend brunches. Sure we were sent new schedules week after week despite it being "set," but my shifts never changed. But after some turnover in the barista community, I'm back on the weekend brunch team. Because I'm the only barista left who can make latte art.


Friday, May 14, 2010

Brooklyn Is For (Music) Lovers.

I might not have made any money yesterday, but I didn't spend much either. One thing I love about Brooklyn is the scads of underemployed young people who are making some really good music and playing in totally affordable venues. I've never paid more than $10 to get into a show, and often all you have to do is buy one drink and submit your hand for ugly stamping.

Last night I went to Pete's Candy Store in Williamsburg to check out a new-ish duo called The Stone Lonesome, who's EP should be out in about a month. Really great country music for the skinny-jeans set, big-hearted sound coming from two small-ish young people. Total spent on the evening including drinking? $15.00 That's entertainment I can believe in.

Just for fun, below are some tracks from The Stone Lonesome's myspace page, as well as from Emily Long and Her Band, the indie rock mothership to The Stone Lonesome's renegade scouting mission.

Bridge To Nowhere - The Stone Lonesome

Somethin' Good - The Stone Lonesome

Genevieve - The Stone Lonesome

Ringing Bells - Emily Long and Her Band

Home- Emily Long and Her Band

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Other Things To Do Include : Cleaning.

I'll keep this short and sweet. I normally work thursdays, but my thursday shift at the restaurant was cut...I think forever. YIKES. The downsides of losing a shift are pretty obvious, but I excel at silver linings. A list of upsides include:

-More availability to take higher paying shifts.
The thursday shift I lost was a barista shift, during which I would make about $85 bucks. However, if I end up covering for any servers on Thursdays, I'm looking at $100-$150. If I do an event on Thursdays I'm looking at anywhere from $100-$250.

-Freedom to commit more hours to another job.
"But Underemployed," you might say, "you don't have a second paying job. You're fucked!"
To which I would reply, "I don't have another job yet." This week I interviewed for another part time job, and I've emailed a couple random places I found on Craigslist. It'll happen.

-Time to do arts stuff.
I regularly volunteer my reading and writing skills to a big time NYC arts organization on a barter system. Sure I'm bitter they didn't hire me for a full-time paying job but whatever! The work is fun brain candy and I like it. And maybe someday they'll pay me.

-Time for life administration.
Well, today I've been watching episodes of "Miami Ink" on Instant Netflix, folding laundry, cleaning the floors, changing sheets. My room is never tidier than when I have unexpected, undesired days off.

Let's hope I won't have to compulsively organize for long.

Kat Von D's version of the classic Gil Elvgren pinup seen above, tattooed on "Miami Ink."

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

I Want To Somm With David Lynch.

Dick Tremayne, your taste is exquisite. Your fine clothing shines like a beacon in a flannel storm and your palette is an inspiration to roadhouse beer drinkers all over town. Your accent is as old world as aged Bordeaux, you are as classic as pairing a medium rare porterhouse with a fine Cabernet. If you were somming during my shift, I bet all my tables would seek your counsel, follow your advice, and cherish your expertise. Dick Tremayne, what should I drink with my cherry pie?

Cherry Pie À La Lynch Tattoo by Ethan at Element Tattoo in San Antonio, TX.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

We Doormen-less New Yorkers. An Open Letter To UPS.

Dear UPS,

I am more likely to be out of the house during the late afternoon and night than in the morning and midday. This is because I make more money when I work dinner shifts, allowing me to purchase things needing of delivery. But when you show up at 7:30, I am busy working.

Re: 2nd attempt. No, there will not be someone home tonight because my roommate works in the restaurant industry too. And no, sir, I don't have a doorman because I'm not earning enough from said industry to support living in a building with people paid to wait for my stuff.

Re: Holding. No, friend, I cannot go to your storage facility because I live in New York City and therefore don't have a car. Furthermore, the perk of getting things delivered is that someone else gets paid to carry the heavy package to the door of your fourth floor walk-up.

It would be really awesome if you would let me request a morning delivery, UPS. It would save you useless trips to my non-doormanned apartment and save me the aggravation of explaining my life to you over the phone.



Monday, May 10, 2010

Where Were The Underemployed Vegans? I Guess They Were Too Busy Not Eating Stuff.

Manhattan, NY.

After weeks of protests, threats and general running-a-muckery it seems like the vegan hatred directed at fellow living being Chef Thomas Keller seems to have collapsed here in the big (non-pesticide sprayed) apple. For those who haven't been following this story, the basic gist is that vegan and animal rights acitivists in Los Angeles have targeted Chef Keller and the artisanal farm where he buys his foie gras for their indignation, protesting at French Laundry and Bouchon and campaigning to make serving the deliciously fatted livers illegal.

On Saturday, a protest was scheduled to occur at the doorstep of Chef Keller's national food mecca Per Se (or rather, on the street side of the anti-terrorism barriers of The Time-Warner Center). The protest was organized by The Animal Protection and Rescue League. They planned a "bi-coastal foie gras demonstration," attempting to hit the Keller restaurants in California and New York City.

Here in New York, only 10 protesters and 3 dogs showed up. There were banners, pamphlets to be passed, but only 20 hands to do it. Rough. Upstairs, the death star went on serving its normal foie-filled menu, adding foie gras dog biscuits to the bakery list. According to Eater, the Los Angeles protests were more animated. It wouldn't have taken much.

Forgetting the animal rights politics of it, I am glad their "protest" failed. Per Se has many many employees, as does the Bouchon Bakery next door, all trying to make a living. I'm genuinely relieved that the angry, meat-starved mob didn't manage to hurt the earning potential of the servers, bartenders, bussers, hosts, reservationists, counter people, baristas, line cooks, dishwashers, porters and stewards on one of the most lucrative nights of service.

And the cherry on top? If it wasn't for Chef Thomas Keller's own passionate, pre-trendy, restaurant-culture-changing interest in ethical farming and local sourcing, even fewer New Yorkers would care about how the meat on their plates got there.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Where I've Got Nothing To Complain About. Or, It Pays To Know.

There are many things in my life I am thankful for. There are many things in my life I am frustrated about. But one facet of life I have totally under control is getting wicked comps and VIP treatment at one of the busiest celebrity-chef run restaurants south of 14th Street.

The scene is Bustling Restaurant, Friday night, 9:00 pm. Dinner service is in full swing. Those without reservations are waiting about an hour and a half for a table, and there is a wait-list to sit at the bar. I had made a 9:45 reservation for my bestie and me to have some bonding time, but we showed up early hoping to sit at the bar. After checking in with the hostess, we head to packed bar. And this is where the magic happens.

I wave at the two bartenders, big smiles all around- I am very friendly with both of these gentlemen. I'm particularly chummy with the older one (I estimate age 55), who has been serving me at this restaurant bar since I moved into the city. Although my best girl had been informed that the bar wait-list was going, we were seated as soon as the next set of seats opened at the bar because the younger bartender slightly lifted his chin to me, and darted his eyes at the men getting up from their seats. The 2 women who assumed they'd be sitting next looked really confused watching us take their seats, knowing that they hadn't watched us wait. Jumping the line? Sexy.

We were then started off, no questions asked, with some bubbly. Chitchat with the two bartenders ensued, as did unordered appetizers. Free drink and food? Sexy.

But why the special treatment for little, underemployed me? I tip nicely and go a lot, but I am in no way a high roller, so why give me free stuff?

Because we're friends now. I befriended the older bartender quickly, regularly drinking and dining during the daytime in his Thursday double. He'd be just getting started and I, at 3 had just ended my torturous breakfast shifts of 6 am - 2 pm. I'd tell stories about my day- he knows about where I work, he's served (my) Chef for years at this bar, and I think he likes that an outgoing 24 year old girl would happily shoot the shit about the industry with a well-seasoned, middle-aged vet like him. And I loved talking about the menu, the wine, the tastes, the ideas, in my geekiest food-loving glory. And that's when he started giving me stuff for free. The more regularly I would go, the more he and I developed our strange bond- sometimes he'll even let himself complain about a costumer or two, and then brush it off and tell me about a new wine on the list. Other times, he'll pry me for stories from work and make fun of me for the rookie mistakes I make. I ask about his daughter (my age), and he recognizes my mom, my brother, and my bff when I bring them in. I go alone a lot at quiet times in the service- late afternoons particularly, after lunch rush but way before dinner.

I try to only go when he's working...Maybe I know his schedule...oops.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Ken Has (Meat)Balls.

The following are just a few of rock-star photographer Laura Costa's series of Barbie-Meets-Food photographs. [Insert intelligent comments about identity and commodity (fetishism), pleasurable looking, and cultural consumption here.] Check out her website for photos of men with hookers, awesome editorial shoots, and portraits of famous musicians.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Who Are You Calling An Oxymoron, Pal?

Inspired by not getting an arts job I was hoping-but-not-expecting to get (I don't even want to talk about the fact that I easily earn more in the restaurant industry than I would at this job), I turned back to Craigslist as a source of both comfort and aid. Gained? A job interview at a cool Brooklyn restaurant lined up for Saturday afternoon. Learned? Check this out:

Fine Dining Servers Needed At Yankee Stadium

Apparently there's a steakhouse inside Yankee Stadium. Who knew? But what I love about this post is its amazingly subtle prefaces. When applying to any restaurant, you want to make sure its a busy one. Since servers in New York City earn below minimum wage (usually $4.65/hour), your compenstation is almost entirely based on tips. More people in a night = more tips.

The steakhouse describes itself as "one of the most in-demand restaurants in NYC" "on game days." Broad claim, but I'm willing to believe they do brisk business on nights when the home team is...home. But the ad also claims that this is a great job for those "looking for a career." But tell me, Yankee Steak Slingers, how could I have a career if your business is based on whether or not people are at the stadium? I mean, forgetting the fact that sometimes the Yanks play away, I hear tell of something called an off-season. Unless hanging out in the South Bronx at desolate ball fields is the new hanging out in repurposed Brooklyn warehouses.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Do You Have What It Takes? (jk jk of course you don't)

Job seekers, have you ever felt worse about yourself after reading the desired traits portion of a want ad? I certainly have.

And so has Kristina Loew of McSweeney's. I've pasted her amazing entry from 4/21 below. My favorite quote is way at the bottom : This is a great opportunity to gain more experience. Only experienced candidates should apply.

Preach, Sister, preach!



- - - -


Local news channel looking for a dedicated multi-tasker to work in our news division. This is a great opportunity to gain experience in a fast-paced news environment. Only serious candidates with experience should apply.

You should be exceptional, a well-organized self-starter with superior skills in ALL aspects of news production.

Ideal candidate will oversee our entire slate of daily news programming including, but not limited to, our seven-hour morning show, the Live at Noon broadcast and all eighteen evening newscasts.

Applicant will also be expected to manage all news breaks and all breaking news coverage, as well as the online site and the Accounts Payable department.

Candidate will also be responsible for the promotion and marketing of ALL news programming for the channel.

Flexibility and willingness to work under pressure in a chaotic news environment with ever-changing responsibilities and deadlines a MUST.

Must be available at least 80 hours a week and able to work most weekends and all major holidays.

This is a non-paying internship.

Great opportunity to get your foot in the door and gain news experience.


• A minimum of ten years experience.

• At least seven years working on a nationally televised news or reality program in a senior position.

• At least three years working at a print publication. Celebrity weekly preferred, but not required. Senior writing position at the New York Times and/or Us Weekly, a plus.

• Strong background in entertainment, marketing AND accounting preferred. Background in news, a plus.

• Extensive experience researching compelling stories, prepping anchors and booking news guests.

• Candidate should feel comfortable handling celebrity talent, even if they are throwing things and threaten to kill you.

• Will also expected to manage office and order all office supplies.

• Ideal candidate MUST have extensive contacts in media, politics AND entertainment. Your Rolodex should include major industry players.

• You MUST have strong ability to write, direct, and edit all news segments. Will be expected to produce riveting news pieces consistent with the voice of the channel.

• Light filing.

• Intern must possess superior conceptual and editorial skills. Since ALL ideas will come from you be prepared to pitch and develop EVERY segment for EVERY broadcast.

• MUST be able to type at least 350 WPM. You will be tested!

• You will be expected to transcribe ALL raw news footage sent in from our affiliates.

• HTML experience REQUIRED. Candidate will be expected to write and post eight-to-ten 2000 word articles per day for our online site, including weekends and ALL major holidays.

• Candidate should be an expert in ALL forms of social media and have a MINIMUM of 50,000 Twitter followers.

• Extensive experience as a cameraperson a MUST. At least four years on a reality show considered a plus. Three years at an Arabic news channel is REQUIRED.

• Intern MUST have own camera equipment. With bonded insurance. Must also have lighting package and lavelier microphones for field shoots.

• Ideal candidate should also be able impress executives with his/her ability to expertly handle company's espresso machine.

• Exceptional understanding of new production, post-production and graphic software including Avid, Final Cut, Photoshop, After Effects and software that is still in it's developmental stages.

• Please do not apply unless you have ALL pertinent software.

• Driver's License preferred.

• CDL Commercial truck license a MUST. You will be required to have your own commercial truck for location shoots. You may also rent a commercial truck at your own expense.

• Some international travel is required for this position. Please make sure you have substantial miles in your mileage account or can pay your own way.

• Ability to handle daily mail and answer phones. You will occasionally be expected to fill in for the receptionist during her lunch hour.


• Bachelor degrees in communication, new media AND political science required. Masters Degree in Filmmaking preferred. PH.D in Journalism, a plus. Candidates with a law degree will be given special consideration.

• Ideal candidate MUST be fluent in Spanish and have a working knowledge of Arabic and Mandarin Chinese.

• If you do not meet these requirements your resume will NOT be considered.

This position has tremendous growth opportunity. May lead to full-time employment with possible entry-level pay or occasional freelance work.

Sorry, we do not offer health benefits to ANY of our employees under ANY circumstances.

This position requires someone who is completely dedicated. We are NOT looking for college students or people who are currently in a career "transition."

This is a great opportunity to gain more experience. Only experienced candidates should apply.

We have received thousands of applications for this position. Due to the overwhelming interest we CANNOT guarantee a response to your inquiry.

We apologize in advance.

Superstars Love Pin-ups Too! And They Clean Floors.

Beyoncé as pin up model! Beyoncé as housewife! Beyoncé drinking martinis! Beyoncé smoking cigarrettes!!

Beyoncé's recently released video for "Why Don't You Love Me," folks.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

How Do You Feel? Do You Know How You Feel?

In one of my many free hours spent looking for jobs on Craigslist, I came across this post in the ETC section. It linked me to a survey on recent job loss hosted by the New School for Social Research. The survey was for people falling on the spectrum from unemployed to employed part-time. That's me! Feeling uncharacteristically optimistic about my chances of winning the lottery for a $200 gift check, I set to answer the survey's questions as honestly as I could. I'm not sure I learned anything new from the survey- but it certainly did throw a few things into relief.

There were some expected prompts- how long had you been employed, how long did it take you to find another job if you have one, how satisfied are you at work- that sort of thing. But there were some weird curve balls. Would I be upset if someone thought I was gay? Am I concerned that other people might think I'm gay? If someone thought I was gay would I get angry- you get the drift. Another curve ball was the violence line. How often do I want to hit people I disagree with? How often do I hit people? Would I describe my temper as like a powder keg about to burst? Some of the questions were disturbing, but so is not having anything to do day after day when you need to make money.

A series of questions about depression, anxiety and chronic pain got me thinking about the difference between the six months I spent without steady work and the stretches of unemployment experienced by people who actually had a real career to begin with. I can't imagine losing a career I was working on for 10, let alone 30, years. Not for lack of trying, but I honestly can't empathize with having a well-grounded career. I just don't know what that really means.

My economically challenged peers from the Class of '08 and I don't know the Job Market as anything other than an extremely exclusive club. The kind that takes connections to penetrate, that grants access to only a few lucky new members every year. Many of us left college unable to get entry level jobs in our field of choice. The economy was deceptively strong at that point, but all the sexy careers we were pursuing required we do some time interning for significantly less pay than we'd make actually working for the same employers.

In the fall of '08, the economy came crashing down, and those of us who were fully employed didn't stay that way for long and those of us interning knew we weren't going to get hired at the end of our contracts. For the interners, we had already accepted instability when we took positions that were limited engagements. For those of who were fully employed, the feeling was like icing the kicker. We were out of the game before we got a good shot.

There was a string of prompts related to shame, asking for help and abilities to see the silver lining. Regarding my 6 months of unemployment, I didn't have deep-seated feelings of shame and I wasn't shy about asking for help. I just assumed that because living at home for a while has been the norm for my classmates I had nothing to be ashamed of. The economy crashing- not my fault. And my difficult entry into the work force- par for the course.

Since getting my job at the restaurant, I've always had the attitude that I'm lucky to be employed at all. And I know that a lot of luck and a not necessarily admirable, albeit total, willingness to do unfulfilling work is all that distinguishes my statistical self from my still unemployed peers.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Conversations With The Fully Employed. Part I.

This tidbit of conversation has stuck with me for a couple days. Makes me a little jealous, and a little miffed.

EmployedPseudoPeer : So, do you have any summer plans?

Underemployed : Um, working at the restaurant. That's all I've got so far.

EmployedPseudoPeer : Oh.

HELLO. Restaurant workers are not salaried employees. If I don't show up to work on a given day, I don't get paid. I clock in, I clock out. No sick days, no vacation days. If I want off, I have to get my shifts covered, during which time whoever covers me earns money and I don't.

So do I have summer plans? Sure : Making money at work, finding other ways to make money (by working), and spending said money on a cool film editing class I found, as well as some tasty mojitos, maybe a sundress or two, and sweet sweet live tunes.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Crude Moments Caught on Tape.

Do they really not have anything better to talk about?