You go to school for 4 plus years and earn a degree from a prestigious school and you ready for the work world. Before you get all rambunctious and plot how you going to spend your first check you have to get the job first. What better place to test your skills then a job fair? A job fair is the work world version of the combine. All the best prospects in their best combinations with their beefed up resumes on resume paper ready to sell themselves to the highest bidder while the companies are trying to replenish their livestock and continue their mission of success which is profit but at what cost. That’s where Jerry Maguire, Rich Paul, Drew Rosenhaus come in but not right now. A job fair can be like the light skin jawn that you say good morning too in front of her friends and she just sighs while your boys make a meme of the face you made when she curved you like a Clayton Kershaw curveball. It is a very humbling experience but as my brother Geno would say, ‘Tough times don’t last…tough people do”. So you go to all the job fairs whether they are held at hotels or the convention center. You have to have the mentality of this Jay lyric when going to a job fair, “But I will not lose for even in defeat there’s a valuable lesson learned so it evens up for me”. See you will go to numerous job fairs, print out resumes, buy new shirt and tie combos just for them to say apply on line. You will go there with the hopes of a career and you may just end up with some mints and some pens but you learn something every time you go so it’s never a loss.
Recently, I went to a job fair to explore other job opportunities and to sharpen up my skills. My wife made a good point saying that you don’t ever want to get too comfortable because in an instant it could be gone. I updated my resume, bribed my mom for some resume paper and was ready to hit the ground running. I got an invite to go to a job fair at a hotel out in Maryland where a lot of technical companies would be in attendance so why not. It’s been years since I’ve done this but I know this would be an interesting experience. It’s always interesting when you try to compile your whole life into 30 seconds as they review your resume looking for buzz words that will make the computer goes nuts when your information is entered. They shake your hand and then we both move on to the next candidate.
I don’t know if times have changed or I’m just getting old but this experience was different than the other ones. This was a small fair because it was a hotel conference room which means it’s was packed like the parties at homecoming. It was about 7 companies and some where only talking to people that had a top secret with a polygraph clearance which knocked me out earlier than Mike Tyson in the 90’s. Oh well on to the next one. The first recuriter…man not only would he not take my resume but he wouldn’t even shake my hand. It’s a reason for that though because he just sneezed in his hand before I got there and couldn’t find any sanitizer so I just gave him the nod. He goes over his whole speech and when it was done he asked were there any questions and the dude behind me says, “So are you hiring”. I think that was just one of those “I got to be seen somehow even if I look like a jackass but at least he will remember me” moment. Needless to say the recruiter says, “I am hiring just not you” and his confidence was shot down like ducks in the classic Duck Hunt game.
My day almost ended early. Like I mentioned earlier the room is small and since I’m 6 feet about 315 pounds give or take a chicken box with big shoulders I tend to get bumped into a lot. It doesn’t bother me as much because they go out of their way to apologize giving me all types of reasons but I don’t care I know I take up a lot of room. So I’m standing in line and this lady is moving forward even though there is no space. She is like the car that drives on the shoulder when it’s a traffic jam just to realize she has to get back over. Nevertheless, her butt hits my bag and she automatically assumes I grabbed her ass. She made it a spectacle. She was asking people did you see what he did and going in and out the room. I just knew she would get security and then I have to turn into Incredible Hulk or say I was legally blind. After a few minutes she came back and I looked at her with a scowl. If scowls could talk it would say, “You know you fuck up right”. She wouldn’t even give me eye contact after that which was cool because she know she was dead wrong, like BIG would say ‘ay yo you dead wrong’. As I’m standing in line to talk to the next recruiter this guy behind me was like, “what’s good yo? Man I need a job son I just took a job and I’m taking a 45 thousand dollar pay cut. You got a clearance man. Fuck this company and that company. What the fuck I look like…Like Jay said I’m a six figure nigga” I just nodded my head and was like, “That’s crazy man”…followed by a bunch of one word interjections like damn, wow, word and SMH. But in front of me this lady with a big black purse that looks like a gym bag dumps all the lifesavers mints and walks out after getting rejected by a recruiter. I talk to him for a few seconds and he’s like call me on Wednesday. I’m thinking cool that’s wzup here’s a win for the big fella. But remember dude I was talking about earlier, I hear him talking to the same recruiter and the recruiter says I want you to be the VP of Software Development. Damn he really might be a six figure nigga. I wonder if the other people were seeing this or was I just in a different world. But the wildest thing I saw at the job fair was a couple doing the job fair together. The recruiter was talking to his wife but he was answering the questions. It was like a scene from Step Brothers when they were trying to find jobs and Will Ferrell is answering all the questions. I don’t know if it was a religion thing or what but it was crazy. I can tell the recruiter was getting frustrated because the wife had on a business suit while he had on jeans and boat shoes. But she didn’t talk the whole job fair. He did all the talking maybe she was hoarse or something I have no clue but I’ve never seen no shit like that before.
After a few hours it was over, I shook all the hands I could think of and proceeded to my car. As I’m sitting in the car I’m replaying the whole event like game film pointing out mistakes and what I can do differently next time. It was a refresher to say the least but I am more confident than before and I’m ready for the next one. As Darius Lovehall would say, “if you say no I’mma just ask again next time and then the next time until the next time becomes the right time”. I know this isn’t my first job fair and it won’t be my last. For those that are in the same grind continue to press on because fortune favors the bold so how bold will you be.