This story may (or may not) be true and it may (or may not) be based on real life events. Names may (or may not) have been changed to protect privacy.
Just before Thanksgiving, I sat in a courtroom facing a family judge who ordered that I make ten job contacts a week. Ten per week.
I have experience in publishing as well as with social media and traditional marketing. Surely, there have to be jobs out there for me, right?
Well, it’s been nearly a year since I was laid off. Just about twelve months have gone by and I have been searching looking for jobs on every available job site I could find. Now, with the pressure of having to apply for ten jobs each week, I’m panicking. Or at least I was, until last week.
I stepped inside Hooters for the first time – ever – to apply for a job. It wasn’t on my list of places I’d like to work, but after discovering the restaurant while searching for another address which happened to be right next door, I convinced myself, (with Mr. Right egging me on), that if I can walk around in public wearing a wig and red frilly underwear, then a job working at Hooters might be just the next step up or down in my career path.
The Hooters girl outfit is a bit outdated, but the atmosphere in the restaurant was not unlike other sports bars I’ve been to. I asked the perky hostess if they were hiring and she answered with, “Well, we’re always taking applications.” This, I felt, was a scam, a plot to keep me inside the restaurant long enough to crave the Hot Wings that they’re known for.
She disappeared to get me an application and her manager appeared in her place. He invited me to sit down (smooth move), and I proceeded to fill out the application which asked for my work history, references and an affidavit stating that I wouldn’t sue Hooters (if I were hired) for sexual harassment, or whatever.
After about one minute (maybe less), the manager came back and asked me if I had completed the application. “Almost,” I responded and felt pressure to perform and began to write faster and messier than usual. Perhaps this is why I neglected to realize that I put down the phone number of Mr. Right’s parents in the reference section…
When I finally completed the paperwork, Anthony, the restaurant manager, sat down with me to go over the application. At this point, I am dumbfounded that I am still there, applying for a job that would require me to wear orange shorts, (much, much smaller than the granny panties I pretend not to own).
He said several things to me over the course of our ten minute conversation that truly startled me. He mentioned that several “little girls” had recently gotten “big girl jobs,” so he was trying to fill their positions. My response: “I used to have a big girl job.” (I couldn’t make this up if I tried.)
We proceeded to talk about my work history, why I was sitting across the table from him and my lack of experience in the food industry. “I have experience on this side of the bar,” I told him at one point. He wasn’t impressed.
Finally, Anthony pointed out that the job (being a Hooters girl) was more than just about the uniform. It’s about the experience and the atmosphere. Of course it is! Then, out of nowhere, he asked if I’d be OK with dancing and getting on the microphone. He obviously doesn’t know who he’s dealing with.
“Oh, you’d have a hard time taking the microphone away from me. I love being on stage.”
I think I got the job. Fingers and legs crossed.
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