Friday, 7 December 2012

It's been a stressful week...

Aaaaah-AAAAH! Aaah-AAH-aah! DUM-DUM!
Good afternoon everybody! I’m going all current this week, and trying to fire off a post while it’s still relevant. I don’t normally like to post something so soon after writing it because all my best ideas come later – when the bulk of the post has been in existence for some time. This time, I’ll just have to hope I don’t get any better ideas. So here we go.

As I implied in my title, it’s been a damn stressful week, but today the light at the end of the tunnel has been reached, and no matter what happens, I’m in the mood for celebrating… at home… with the missus… in front of the telly… with a special bottle of something. More on that later.

See, a couple of months ago, I got wind of the possibility of a new job within my organisation – more responsibility, more money, more interesting and all that. I’ve been wanting all those things for a while so I figured that since my line managers told me I’d be perfect for it, that I may as well give it a go. And that’s where my problems began.

Looking at the job spec, I was perfect for this role, so the first obstacle was getting in an application. I don’t know about you, but I struggle so much with applications – in particular the ‘personal statement’ or ‘supporting information’ section. You’ll know from reading this blog that I can bang on and on about all kinds of things that are interesting to me, for thousands of words, but when it comes to writing about me, or rather the professional, employable me – someone I’m not that familiar with, I can barely construct a single sentence.

Needless to say, with only slight exaggeration, it took me about two weeks to get anywhere close. The problem this time, mind, was that I fitted the job too well – I had too much to say, and once I’d managed to crowbar it into sentences, then I had to go through five pages taking anything that wasn’t absolutely necessary out. And it all seemed necessary.

Mrs Cake was instrumental in helping with this, as usual. Also as usual, I didn’t agree or accept all of her changes, but she did keep me working on it until long after I’d lost the will.

So that’s all fine: application in, forget about it - until last Friday, when I received notification that I’d been shortlisted for interview. All right, fair enough, but not just interview. They also wanted me to do a test on Excel (easy), a prioritisation test (I can fake that) and a presentation.

Yeah, I know, if you’ve interviewed for jobs a little more high powered than me before, you’ve had to do all this, and what’s the big deal? Right? Well, I’ll tell you what the big deal is. I have heard (this is to be kept strictly on the down-low, by the way) that I’m the only applicant who was shortlisted. All right, no, I get it: they still want to be sure they’re getting someone that’s competent? Right? Fair enough, but get this. It’s only for a 6 month secondment , and by the time they recruit me (if I should be so lucky), it will only be 4 months. It’s a lot of jumping through hoops for a fricking four month secondment, and that’s for sure.

Seriously, I’ve never even had to do a presentation before, and while I know all about the subject that I’m presenting on, I was tearing my fricking hair out on Wednesday night. How do you do it? All I needed to do was explain a few things, which I could do if you called me up and asked me. But to then put it onto slides and form it into a cohesive presentation. It’s a fricking nightmare!

On top of that, I got an upset stomach on Sunday night and spent the night weeing out me bum and vomiting. After that it was a couple of days of feeling nauseous, tired and weak. Sure it got me a couple of days sick leave, but I spent the whole time worrying about the interview, and not being able to concentrate on actually preparing for it (recordings of South Park helped).

So anyway, the interview was this morning, and I felt it went ok. I could tell they were impressed with my presentation, and I know I did two of the three tests ok (it turned out there was also a written test that I didn’t have time to do properly). The interview itself seemed to go ok too. I floundered here and babbled there, but I managed to get a few good points in and got them to write a few things down – that’s always a good sign. They did throw me one question I wasn’t expecting though, and hadn’t prepared for, but after a few seconds hard thought, I managed to pull something out of the air.

Christ, don't you just want to climb inside this picture?
Presumably I’ll find out later whether or not they want me. They damn well better, given how much time I’ve had to put into this. Did I get to any time to relax last night? No. Play Football Manager? No. All right, I’m being a bit silly now, but I’ll tell you this for nothing: if they don’t offer me the job, I’m going to damn well explode. Are you fucking kidding me?! Give me my two weeks back! I want my two weeks back!

I am trying to keep looking on the bright side – it at least will be good practice for next time I need to apply for a job. That’s one good thing. The other good thing… is that it’s over. And to celebrate, I have a little treat planned. I managed to amass a significant amount in Amazon vouchers recently, and last week I made a special purchase; a bottle of Caol Ila 18 year old single malt scotch. I’m drooling just thinking of that peaty and salty goodness. The bottle isn’t as attractive as the 12 year old (it’s the same, but the colours are darker, to represent the light at a later time of day on Islay), but I can’t wait to see what the whisky is like. It immediately breaks my record for most expensive bottle I’ve ever bought, and oldest, so I’m hoping it’s worth it. Tonight I shall wait for the right moment and partake in some obscene scotch indulgence. I might even keep my suit on to make it more of an event. Maybe I’ll wear my suit every time I uncork a particularly special whisky… actually I just remembered we have a cat, and my suit is a cat hair magnet. Just step into a room where there was once a cat, and there’s hair all over it, it just sucks it out of the air. All right, the amount of cat hair floating on domestic currents isn’t that bad, but it does mean there is no point in me sitting down with a glass of scotch, and trying to get comfortable. You use those lint removers to get cat hair off clothes, right? Well, if you want to get cat hair off furniture, you use my suit. Just put it on and sit yourself down. That’s probably where the idea for Velcro came from. I can’t believe Word just capitalised Velcro on its own! Nope, this evening I’m going to have to go for the lounging wear – like every other evening.

Anyway, I’ve got nothing else to tell you for now, so wish me luck, and I’ll be back with something more alcohol related next week.


  1. Hey! Do let us know how you get on with the job. I hope it wasn't Gav's bacon sarnie that made you ill - sounds horrible!

  2. Thanks Clare. I got the job; woo-hoo! I'm sure it wasn't Gav's sarnie that was the offending item - I have no doubt that hygiene levels were impeccable and standard procedures stringently observed.