Monday, April 12, 2010

It's Not Rocket Science: Week 1

Here is my new series. It will chronicle my challenges to get a job in the field I have gone to college for and the field I would like to work in. I mean no disrespect to other occupations. In fact, in the aerospace community people say "It's isn't rocket science. If it was I would be able to do it." That is to say that people have different skills and that doesn't make one skill necessarily better than another. When a house is flooding because of because of bad plumbing a plumber is going to be the most valuable occupation at the moment.

So, in the world of full time working: I worked 46 hours this week. It is physical labor but not terribly hard or heavy. It's 80% lifting 8-10 pound flats of plants constantly and moving them from one place to another or filling pots with dirt. The rest of the time is spent watering, planting, driving, throwing stuff out, moving 20 pound bags of dirt and the like.

I'll be honest, I was pretty depressed the first few days. Kind of a carry over from the last two weeks of stress hitting the 3 months unemployed. Fortunately, I am once again surrounded by an awesome group of people and soon enough I started having fun. I mean I get to spend time with my extended family. I get to do this physical labor that has to be the perfect cross training for rock climbing. I will probably tear it up this summer in Colorado and climb some hard stuff. Third, it's work, and for that I am thankful. You see many people are out of work. There is work out there but it can be a little competitive for the jobs that are available. Also, companies are realizing this and making jobs less desirable. I heard just Sunday of a woman who had graduated two years ago and finally was offered a job in her field (communications) but the salary was only 22k versus 42k like it had been two years ago. Also, she would be required to work 55 hours a week with no vacation for 18 months. Employers want to see if you really want it. So work is good.

I applied for about 7 jobs this week. I am currently working on my cover letter because I have not submitted a cover letter for each job and I think I really need to do that to give myself a chance.

The financial nitty gritty: About a week and a half ago I reach the bottom of where I ever hope to experience. One checking account over drawn 91 dollars, one account overdrawn 89 dollars, over 14k in credit card debt, 38k in student loans, nearly 1k owed to my former CO roomates and no cash to speak of. However, my athlete paid me twice in the same week bringing both checking accounts back to zero and nibbling at the past due credit card bills. I'm not ready to talk about why it got this bad. However, I will say I only own three pairs of jeans, my tv was acquired free, my laptop is 6 years old, I pay for coffee with cash, Pakistan... that was kind of a financial set back, and I have been employed through my college and summer jobs since 2005 however small those salaries may be I have not sat around.

I ran about 51 miles with two sub par workouts. It could be worse. My lung thing is getting better but it is still there. With a branch of the Mayo Clinic only two miles from where I am living (and across the street from the track I run on sometimes) I am not sure why I am procrastinating. Well, actually I do know. Doctors cost money. I have insurance but still it costs money. I can be quite stingy about money and honestly, it's not like my lung is totally killing me.

I didn't really do anything else. I'm here to work, get some running in, and keep applying for future jobs.

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