Thursday, August 31, 2006

Where am I? Who am I? And why am I so confused?

At noon today I finished with four days of interviewing for jobs with law firms.

For those of you not familiar with the process, at least as it's done here at U of M, it goes something like this:

You drive to the Holiday Inn, way the hell out in the middle of nowhere dressed in a monkey suit, carrying a leather portfolio/briefcase, chock full of information about the 8 or so firms that you will be interviewing with that day, dozens of copies of your transcript (which you wish you could lose somewhere), and countless copies of resumes, writing samples, references, etc.

Shortly before your appointed interview time, you show up in front of a hotel room door and hang out with all of your friends who are also hanging out in front of hotel room doors. At the appointed time, one person somewhere in the hallway knocks on a door, which leads to a series of knocks echoing down the hallway as one by one, interviewees bruise their knuckles knocking on yet another door. Then, usually the previous interviewee will exit, and your turn to shine on the interview circuit will come.

To keep the whole process from feeling like some sort of elaborate drug deal or prostitution ring, the beds in the rooms are stood up against the wall.

The interview is 20 minutes long. In those 20 minutes you will ostensibly have to answer questions about your interest in the firm, your interest in particular fields of law, and your resume. In reality, those 20 minutes can pass in countless imaginable ways, including long periods of deafening silence.

(For obvious reasons, I will not disclose ANY of the details of my interviews on this blog, which is too bad, because I had some fun interviews.)

After the 20 minutes are up, you move on and repeat the process.

By the end of a full day of interviews, you feel like screaming at the next person who asks you "so why did you do x?," or "do you have any questions about our firm?" You've been saying the same damn thing to people for days, you've been asking the same questions for days, and at a certain point you can't help but feel like you just don't care anymore.

You lose all sense of yourself after about 6 interviews. You're just this meandering talking object with certain pieces of paper attached that indicate whether you are USDA prime, choice or merely select.

It's not all bad, though. This particular meat-market has the charm of involving lots of friends that you get to comiserate with, laugh with, and in general poke fun at the utter absurdity of interview process with. And there's free coffee.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unrelated but perhaps interesting:
Recurrent dreams about the end of the world are never really that bad; if they were you'd never have any protagonists or denouement. It brings up a fundamental problem with hell. As the disgusting guy they caught a few months ago (torturing rabbits and throwing them out a car window) demonstrated, hell is possible for animals. Humans, on the other hand, not only constantly adapt but have replaced the animal drive for survival with a need for a more complicated adaptation. Hell would never be hell; it would be an ultimate crucible, possibly dementing humanity into something quite different, but it would not work in its usually understood purpose. Besides, that disgusting child-devourer HVHJ forfeits every pretense of morality or authority with His torture fetish. For wanting to cause pointless pain for eternity alone He deserves at least a token thumb in His Eye.

9:09 PM  

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