I hate unemployment

Don't bother getting your hopes up when recruiters call.

A faint glimmer of hope showed itself this week. I sent my resume off in response to a job posting I found using the Indeed job search right at the top of this very page, not really caring much. It was like, "Eah, let's see how well the Indeed search works."

Two hours later, the phone rings. It's a recruiter. He sounds pretty excited, but he doesn't know much about tech. The job is a tech job. As it's described, I'm well qualified.

They call me in for an interview. (Oh boy!) I iron my newest dress shirt, put on a nice pair of slacks, get a haircut and head to Midtown, about two blocks from Grand Central Station, right in that three-block radius that I call the "sweet spot" -- the best place in the world to work. I loved working there, right in the commercial cerebral cortex of America.

The initial interview with the recruiter goes OK. Something doesn't smell quite right (always the case with recruiters) but I'm open to good things happening. The cheaply laminated sign on the door of the office doesn't sit right with me. The whole thing just seems kind of like an elaborate ruse. These people are not getting my Social Security number or any information out of me beyond my skills and employment history.

It gets weird. I'm supposed to meet with the hiring manager, except we're going to meet in the recruiter's office, not at the company. The company's website is... lacking. Cool, fine -- that's part of the reason they need a guy like me. It looks like an empty shell, though, somehow.

I get to the office 30 minutes before the interview is supposed to start. I'm ready with all sorts of examples of my work, my references, smart answers to common interview questions. The guy spends about ten minutes with me and shoos me off so that he can meet the next candidate.

This morning, the recruiter calls me and tells me the guy wants to know more about my experience. Maybe he should have spent more than ten minutes with me, then! I don't mind giving you specific examples of things that I've done, but don't waste my time, then come back at me with almost accusatory-sounding questions about my resume, which you loved initially.

Jeez, just put me to work, and I'll show you what I can do. I'll work for a week for free, and you'll want me so bad it'll hurt. WTF is wrong with people? Don't they know a good thing when they see one? Why should someone as diligent and smart as I be broke and unemployed! It feels like the Soviet Union, like if you're not part of the ruling elite members of the Party, you're nothing. If you get marked as a dissident, you're less than nothing. It really feels like that -- like I've been marked or something. I know it's not true, but a long period of unemployment does strange things to your head.

I hate this so much! All I want is a job! I want to do something that needs to be done and get paid for it. Is that asking so much?

Maybe I should ask the recruiter for a recruiting job. At least I could speak tech with the candidates. Actually, the whole thing smells like some kind of scam so screw it.

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Day 3 and counting...

I feel your pain, Chuck. Well, maybe not as much. I'm only on day 3 of being unemployed for the first time in over 20 years, but I think I'm going to lose my mind if it lasts much longer. Each day so far has been the same routine. I wake up at 8am and make some coffee. Then I turn on the computer and search for jobs and send resumes until around 6pm when I realize that I'm in still in my PJs and haven't even brushed my teeth yet. I've become a hygienic mess in less than a week, no one other than AVON and the US Army wants me, and I can't stand the site of the inside of my own home anymore. I feel like I can't go out because I'm a budget now, and if I do -- what if someone DOES try to offer me a job and I don't respond to their email right away and they give it to someone who IS home. Yes, that thought actually crosses my mind. They'd never think to call my cell phone, that would be too much trouble. Good Lord, what is the average time a person stays unemployed these days? I don't know what to do with myself or how much longer I can take it. I've got mad skills, lowered my salary requirements and have even accepted the fact that I most likely will not be able to work remotely anymore. That's OK, I'll deal with the daily traffic. All I want at this point is someone to just invite me into their office so I can show them how wonderful I am. Is that so much to ask?

chuck's picture

A rookie, huh?

Take care of your hygiene and get up earlier. Do something besides applying for jobs.

I know what you mean about getting an interview. I get as excited about interviews now as I used to get about landing a new job.

When life hands you sh*t, make fertilizer.

How is day number 10 going

How is day number 10 going for you? :) I was layed off back in March and your description of your day is SO much like my own!! Since thenm I made the decision to put my over sized home on the market and make a move to a city where there were more than 3 job postings a week that fit my skill set. I am finding that the corporations that would be interested in my skills take up to 5 weeks to sift through the 500 plus resumes then contact me for the "required testing" process - which takes another couple of weeks to actually take then get a response on whether or not you passed. THEN another 3 weeks for the hiring manager to sift through the resumes of the candidates that have passed the test and make his/her selection of those that will go further. Usually, about 10 are selected and then of course there are the 2,3 and sometimes 4 interviews to get through. I too have lowered my rate and I have actually "dummied up" my resume....because I am hearing that I am "too qualified" and will not be content with the work and rate and will want to go elsewhere when "things get better out there". It's 11:45 am where I am.....Have you brushed your teeth yet??? :) Thank you for sharing your story....it made me laugh - but please know that I have compassion and sensitivity to what you are also going through. My best wishes for your immediate success! Mindi

Hi Randi

Your comments hit the nail on the head. You pretty much summed what your unemployed days are like to match all of ours. Being unemployed is not fun. Having to live with that constant horrible feeling in the pit of your guts of fear, uncertainty, unworthyness etc etc Well I guess I'll put my lap top down and go to the local Seven 11. I have a free lotto ticket. Maybe I'll get lucky

So Chuck. finish the story.

So Chuck. finish the story. was the recruiter office legit? I agree the company interviewing at their office sounds wacked. Did you ever hear from them again? Mojo

chuck's picture

I haven't heard from them

Something about the whole thing just set off my Spider sense. I'll call them on Monday just for giggles and let you know how it went.

When life hands you sh*t, make fertilizer.

Cool . I will check back. A

Cool . I will check back. A few observations:

Recruiters are whores- everything is done for the money. Period. I to am in tech and a non tech person is the worst at determining what you bring to the table. It's not a fair deal.

I know you want/need a job so you will chase anything -but be vary wary of a company that is behaving like these guys up front. Even if they are legit, you can waste a ton of time chasing your tail with them.

They have you in front of them and blow you off and then want follow up?? If they approach all their business and employees like that do you really want to work there? Even in these tough days you are interviewing them as well. I was on one recently and my only thought was how could I ever work for an A@%-hole like this. The simply answer was I would'nt. Mojo

chuck's picture

It seems...

... I may have misjudged the recruiter, and I'm a little relieved that I didn't get the job. We'll see if they can get me a better interview.

When life hands you sh*t, make fertilizer.

Sounds familiar

I can totally relate to this story. Been to a ton of recruiters and it always ends up the same...no luck. It'll happen though. It'll happen!

Are we living the same life?

My husband has been unemployed for a year and a half. He's one of the most talented people I know. But, he doesn't have an MBA so is losing out. 18 years of experience doesn't count for much these days. He has a long list of weird stories like this -- scams, extremely rude & unprofessional HR and Hiring Managers, never returned phone calls and emails, etc. etc. He recently had an interview set up with Microsoft. The senior-level hiring manager had her assistant call five minutes after the call was to start only to tell him it was rescheduled. Then it got rescheduled again. Then the morning it was finally to happen, she just didn't call at all. They emailed a day later and suggested a new date/time. No apology. What is happening to people that they think it's okay to be so unprofessional????

Sorry to rant and steal the focus away from the swindling recruiter. First time I posted on this topic and needed to unload.

chuck's picture

Rant away!

One of the reasons I started this site was to give people a place to vent. Glad to see that it's finally happening.

Has your husband looked into going into business for himself? It's hard as hell, but it can pay off.

When life hands you sh*t, make fertilizer.

I blame it on the internet.

I blame it on the internet. With jobs sites making it so much easier to find a job than it was 20 years ago --when all you could do was pick up a local paper. But I think responsibility went right out the window with it. With all the traffic-- no worries about follow up. Lost art. Mojo

Chuck~ I have had excellent

I have had excellent experiences with recruiters. Because they DO take commission from the salary they get the employer to contract, I received a starting salary rate that was the highest I have ever received in the 20 years that I have been working. I have been layed off on two seperate occasions within corporate, and both times, I have been so thankful for the recruiters who have contacted me, interviewed me and "sold" my skills to a new Employer. Both of these quickly turned into perm. positions with the same starting rate. Best wishes for your new professional future!

chuck's picture

Thanks for the encouragement

I know that there are a lot of solid recruiters out there, and I know that the legit ones make their money on your money.

Maybe one of them will be able to help me someday.

When life hands you sh*t, make fertilizer.

Filling out %*&^(@ applications

Here's an experience you may have had: a potential employers responds to your resume and asks you to come to an interview at his office. When you arrive, the gum-smacking receptionist hands you a clipboad with an application blank and asks you to complete it. Now, I'm not about to give out confidential information such as my Social Security # and how much I made on my last job PRIOR to even meeting someone and discussing the position. What do they need that info for, anyway? Am I wrong here?

chuck's picture

I have had that happen,

and I fell for it, too. It was a recruiter, as a matter of fact. It makes me nervous to this day knowing that I gave them so much info.

When life hands you sh*t, make fertilizer.

Recruiters Some Good Some Bad

Oh Chuck, You don't know how a few bad recruiters can damage the ones who are good and honest to the job seeker. Some bullsh*t you asking you about you experience and background only in the end do not really have a job opening. Like the one I dealt with today; company unamed. So do have the decency to tell you that the job is filled or cancelled, unlike some who don't reply back. I would like to tell some to shove it after some double talk, but I can't risk it if a particular recruiter has a legitimate job to offer me right away.

chuck's picture

Like any other profession, right?

The one I was working with seems good. They have followed up with me and let me know about some other opportunities. I'm willing to keep an open mind about it. They haven't done anything to screw me over.

Some of them are snakes, though, just collecting information for who knows what purpose.

When life hands you sh*t, make fertilizer.

Day 7

I'm new to this website. I'm on Day 7 of my layoff. I took a job back in September. I thought it was my dream job. After being there only a month the company could not pay their rent so we were sent home with a laptop. Guess I should have seen the handwriting on the wall but I chose to think things were temporary. However, I was told my my supervisor that business was slow and my position was being eliminated due to the economy after the 1st of the New Year. I'm dealing with all of the emotions one feels after being laid off. I think what I am most concerned about is that I might take a job and have this happen again as so many companies are downsizing.

chuck's picture


Gone are the days when a job meant security. For me, my best security is my own willingness to hustle, take some body blows, and keep learning from my many mistakes.

When life hands you sh*t, make fertilizer.

everyday is a saturday on funemployment

I have been on unemployment for 3 months now. I now am the proud owner of a neck beard and rarely brushed teeth. I stay up til 3 or 4 at night and wake up around 230 everyday and check fb and play xbox live. i find myself yelling at the dog and talking to it cause im so effen bored. I cant really do much cause of the funemployment budget. A friend of mine told me I should stay on unemployment till the economy gets gets better. i think im gonna go apeshit if i have to be stuck like this much longer. Unemployment is so fucking lame wish i had a job again or at least somethin to do.

chuck's picture

I hear ya'

It sucks mightily.

You can give yourself stuff to do though. At least brush your teeth.

When life hands you sh*t, make fertilizer.


I live in south eastern ohio the area has allways been poverty strickin as a teen i worked at a greenhouse then moved to florida worked as a mechanic at a few diffrent places i got bored working on chemical trailers everyday and joined the army cavalry scout for a few years got out came back to ohio and took the first job i could got laid off a few qeeks ago but since my experience covers nearly every feild out there but is limited time to any certain feild and a ged no matter what anyone tells you is not the same as a diploma and the simple fact that unemploymentis the highest hear it has ever been employers have allot better options than hireing me my job didnt really pay the bills before now i get half of that im hungry now and homeless soon and while civilians seem greatfull it feels a bit like uncle sam could care less scared to think this was what i fought for

chuck's picture

This wasn't what you fought for, man

We will fight for you and the millions like you.

Hang in there. This is temporary.

When life hands you sh*t, make fertilizer.

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