I’ve been out of college for over a year now, and with my eons of experience in the working world (I believe the elimination of summer vacay equates me to “expert” and “CEO” status), I decided it was time to brush up my resume and cover letter just in case. I mean, you never know what kind of opportunities could come up, right? Plus, I figured I should probably replace my bullshit about how being a “Potbelly Sandwich Artist” helped me “foster leadership and collaboration skills through teamwork.” I made sandwiches and mopped floors at the end of the night. And I had enough mayo stains on my jeans to be occasionally confused for a prostitute. Which I guess makes me “versatile” and “HARD-working” (ha…see what I did there?).
So I pulled up a few old cover letters to see if I could still use them as templates and tweak them for whatever position/company I might apply for in the future. Now here’s the thing about cover letters – there’s thousands of articles out there telling you the “secrets” to landing an interview and making a good/lasting impression. I’ve read them all. Well, I’ve probably read five, but come on, I have happy hours and other important shit to focus my attention on. In a nutshell, what they all say is that you have to stand out from the crowd. “Be funny,” they said. “Don’t come across as uptight,” they said. “Relate to the readers – they read hundreds of these, make it interesting,” they said.
And so I wrote. I wrote what I assumed was clever and what I was sure would elicit gentle chuckles from the members of the hiring committee.
It was not. And I guarantee no chuckles were to be had.
If Richard Simmons suddenly ran stark naked through my office right now, I would be less horrified and shocked as I was when I read my opening paragraph. In fact, I would probably be more physically comfortable if he then started leading an aerobics class while continuing to let his junk flap in the AC.
I stared at my computer screen for a good hour before I came up with this opening paragraph. I kept thinking to myself, “be witty.” That’s like telling a person who is about to have a dislocated shoulder popped back into place that they should just relax. And to be honest, I tend to make pretty awful jokes on a regular basis that I seem to find hilarious. So “witty” and “humorous” probably shouldn’t have been my go-to starters. Alas, here we are.
I’m sorry, was I in some sort of near-death car crash post-graduation that made me forget everything I’ve ever learned about how to be a NORMAL HUMAN IN LIFE? Perhaps. Yes, perhaps I was. It’s really the only logical explanation as to why I decided to write this as my opening paragraph and thereby doom myself to unemployment for the remainder of my adult life.
And just in case you were wondering (which I’m certain you were)…no, I did not get the job. Nor did I get the other three jobs I sent the same opening paragraph to.
My current job only required a resume. And as a result, I now follow Jesus.
(Wait…is that the right closer? Amen? Merry Christmas? Fuck. I mean…shucks. Sorry Jesus. I’ll buy you a new hammer for your birthday next year. I hear you carpenters make some mean use outta those things).