April 27th, 2006


(sigh) ... more on the job search

As my 7th week of the Bartending job search nears its close, I am no more likely to be employed than I was on graduation from bartending school. Which is very depressing.

This week started off with going through the application process at two area places, either of which I would be happy with. Unfortunately, I got real dismissive vibes at both. The first, part of a local restaurant chain, had a manager who got very specific about "just need to hire one bartender" and wanting somebody he felt "fit his team", given that he wasn't even making a gesture to take my resume with the application paperwork (I had to hand it to him separately), I figured that meant "Buddy, you ain't what I want on my team". The second place is a very "trendy" bar in a top-end hotel and the manager I handed my application to had this look on his face like I was in clown makeup or something, telling me "oh, we're just building a file" ... yeah, sure.

Tuesday wasn't quite as bad, as a major hotel at least had a HR person who was informative, telling me that the app would go to the Beverage Manager (usually the HR folks have been of the "grab & grunt" sort) who would then review it. THIS is what I have for "hopeful" these days! The afternoon sucked, though, as the places I went to (schedualling accoding to the info from the school's placement office) weren't open at the hours I got there (and, come on, getting to a restaurant that my info said would take apps "after 4pm" at 4:20pm when they open at 5:00pm should not be too early to see anybody, dammit!).

Yesterday, due to some scheduling issues with The Girls, I stayed in and got some apps done on-line both for places that aren't open yet and some hotels that didn't require you to show up in person (although that damn Hyatt form would only let me select ONE job category).

Today is my "running around town" day ... I have one place down in the Loop to hit and one at like Lincoln & Belmont up north. Between getting there and filling out the paperwork this should take up most of the day. I have one more thing on my current list, but they also a bit of a run (and don't see anybody before 5), and I've got more "family stuff" to deal wtih tonight, so that will have to slide till tomorrow.

I am beginning to feel very nervous and depressed and on the verge of a real ugly freak-out over how this is going. Not good. Not good.

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A good thing ...

I've become quite enamored of the new function in Netscape 8 when the first menu that pops up over some text you've highlighted has a google search option. Initially, I didn't pay it much mind, but I've found myself using it more and more frequently, and it's great ... it opens up a new tab with the Google search, no muss, no fuss, no lines, no waiting. Gotta like that.

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another good thing ...

Hey, I have to find the non-suidical stuff where I can ...

I took the Red Line to Fullerton and just as I got down to the street the #11 bus showed up ... it's often a 20min wait there, so that was a "happy thing".

Also, I found that the place I was going to was only a block from a Brown Line stop, so I took that downtown, and the El showed up right after I'd gotten to the platform then ... that makes TWO good public transit connections on the same day! ... but wait, there's more ... I took the Brown Line down to the Loop and noticed on my notes that the place I was going to apply at down there said to call the manager first, well, I got off the train at the Quincy stop, called the guy, got his voice mail, left a message, and got right back on the train to head back north ... not only did I not have the frustration of going to yet another place that wasn't open, but I didn't have to rack up another fare! ... and when I got back up to Fullerton, I was able to duck downstairs from the northbound tracks and get back up to the southbound tracks just in time to hop on the Red Line that was just arriving! That's three unbelievably convenient connections today (plus doing all that on one fare-with-transfer) ... somehow it feels like the CTA is "walking on eggshells" around me, not wanting to push me over the edge into psychotic behavior.

The one appointment I did get to, though, was painfully depressing, although it may end up providing me with some on-call catering gigs (which is NOT where this job search is supposed to be heading ... I was intending this Bartending thing to end up with me in a convention hotel with 40+ hours a week, good tips, and a nice benefit package!). I really am going to be bummed if I find I'm having to compete head-to-head with "undocumented workers" to eke out some cash flow. You know if that happens I'll be adding the local INS office to my speed dial!

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Interesting ...

I've had this book sitting around since the middle of the Klinton regime (when I was certain those bastards would ban all access to the Constitution ... I figured I needed a copy in my possession), but it didn't suggest itself for the "current read" pile until just recently (perhaps by this was the trigger). Anyway, I figured, what good is a Libertarian if he doesn't have easy access to the Constitution, right?

Well, Harold J. Spaeth's The Constitution of the United States is a bit of a strange duck. One would think that a book so titled would, perhaps, concentrate most of its verbiage on the Constitution ... however, Spaeth's book spends only the first 10% or so discussing it, then devotes the next 70% to looking at how the Supreme Court has interfaced with it over the years (up to 1990, this being the 1991 edition). The actual Constitution itself is buried back in Appendix F, stuck between a couple of editions of The Federalist and the Confederate Constitution!

Frankly, I would have been MUCH more interested in this had the focus been on the materials dumped in the back ... the Virginia Bill of Rights of (1776), the Declaration of Independence (1776), the Articles of Confederation (1781), The Federalist #10 (1787), The Federalist #51 (1788), the U.S. Constitution (1789), and the C.S. Constitution (1861). While he does, briefly touch on the antecedents of the Constitution and the fight over Federalism, this would have been a far better book had the thrust been on how the Constitution got to be the way it is, with comparisons to similar documents, rather than a look at what the Supreme Court has done with it. It's almost "false advertising" that there is NO mention of the Supreme Court on the cover, as this is not a book about the Constitution, but about how the Court has interpreted it in various cases in assorted "topics" over the years ... a more honest title would have been something like "The Supreme Court's approach to The Constitution" or something along those lines

Of course, the fact that Spaeth "wears his Leftism on his sleeve" for most of the book (sneering at Conservative judges/decisions and waxing into breathless enthusiasm for the most radical of the 60's judicial excesses) didn't help my enjoyment of it. I have since discovered that the author is a member of the Michigan Democratic State Central Committee, so his is hardly a neutral voice! On the plus side, it's written for college students, so it's at about the 8th grade reading level ... which made it (up until the documents in the Appendices, of course), a quick and easy read.

Now, I probably read the Constitution somewhere back in High School, but the details hardly stayed with me ... what struck me, however, was the economy of words .. I'm not sure if "terseness" or "brevity" fits, but when you have the Second Amendment (in total) say:
"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed."
It hardly leaves much "wiggle room" ... which makes me wonder what part of "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms" or "shall not be infringed" the anti-gun Leftists can't get! You can't have an effective Militia unless you can assemble armed citizens. Of course, the Lefties think everything comes from the Government so they try to argue that the Militia is something somehow provided BY the Government, rather than being a safeguard that the People have against excesses OF the Government.

Anyway ... I can't much recommend this one ... I'm sure there are better books on the Constitution out there. It is perhaps telling, that while this is still in print (it is, after all, in the HarperCollins College Outline series, so is no doubt being used as a text book), this 13th edition, from 1991, was the last update. If the idea of a Leftist review of Supreme Court decisions sounds yummy to you, it can be had new from the usual suspects for as little as a buck seventy five. I'd recommend a cup of coffee instead.

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Would you believe ... a POEM?

OK, I'm shocked.

I haven't written anything in ages ... I mean, I was writing some back when I was at Chubb (in 2002) and having a "schedule" (I tend to write most when I have predictable "slots" in the day to fill), but it dwindled down to nothing over the past few years. Frankly, I don't have a clue when the last time I spit out a poem was.

Unfortunately, once again, even years later, I seem to be "writing the same poem" ... the same emotional range, the same pallate of words, the same damned sense of total doom. Unfortunately, today I just "had to write", it seems like something "snapped" in me last niight (I had quite a panic over our financial outlook), and suddenly I'm "back in touch" with the part of me that feels nothing but impending catastrophe.

So, for your reading enjoyment ...

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Oh, yeah ... wasn't that fun.

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