Monday, September 15, 2003

What better to start your Monday, and your week, than with a job search. I really hope that this doesn’t set the tone for the week, otherwise I’m in for another five days of unremitting tedium.

Thing that gets me about some of these job web sites is that they are so hard to search. You get this tiny wee boxes with huge lists in to scroll through, half the time you can’t pick multiple choices, which means doing the same search twice – once for the North West to pick up jobs in Manchester, and another for the North East to find jobs in Leeds and Sheffield (I’ve decided to widen my scope a little – people keep telling me how nice Leeds is and Sheffield’s not so far from my friends in Manchester).

Then you have the keywords. Most sites allow you to use Boolean operands, but when you search for ?content or web or editor or internet?, you come up with no results, then when you search for ?web? on its own, suddenly there are two pages? worth. What’s that all about?

So I end up doing essentially the same search a half dozen times on one site before I finally get bored and move on to the next site and have to go through it all over again.

It really is painful. I’ve been at it two hours, and I’ve had a basinful already. Still, I did find one job that I have the correct experience to do, so that’s? good, I guess. Plus I still have a list of agencies to ring up and hassle, and I have put my CV up on these blasted job sites, just in case.

It’s like having a tooth pulled without anaesthetic.

Although I sincerely hope that actually doesn’t also happen today, as I do have to go to the dentist’s this afternoon for a check up. More tedium. I can guarantee you now that my dentist will patronise me the whole time I’m in his chair, will tell me I’ve not cleaned my teeth just exactly right, and will call me Susan repeatedly.

I will grit my teeth – preferably on his finger – and say nothing, because he’s a good dentist and good dentists are hard to find. Having had various and assorted bits of dental work and even operations on my teeth when I was younger, and a jaw that dislocates at the first hint of chewing, I value good dentists above my sanity.

Which is lucky because by the end of today I expect to have lost all grip on that particular commodity.

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A ripping yarn

by Suw on September 15, 2003

I never really understood why people would rip large quantities of music onto their computer. That was until I found myself without room to unpack my stereo and the small mountain (very small, compared to some people I know Mr McIntyre) of CDs to go with it.

I suppose I could put the stereo on top of the filing cabinet in the corner, but my in/out/deal-with-next-year trays are there at the moment. And I truly have nowhere to unpack the boxes of CDs, my shelves being already full of, er, boxes and Welsh dictionaries. So instead I find myself opening each box, ripping the essentials to my spare hard drive, then packing them up again. It's a strangely therapeutic activity.

So far, I've got through one box and ripped about 3gig of music. And before you ask, no I won't be sharing these gems in the net – my connection currently has a hard enough time downloading email, let alone downloading music. Poor thing chokes on fresh air as it is.

The advantage of all this is that I now have a 'various' playlist that comes in at over 14 hours and which, when set to shuffle, provides me with the unpredictability of radio combined with the happy knowledge that I'll never have to sit through some dirge that I detest. Although I miss XFM, which I used to listen to every day on satellite, I have found a reasonable facsimile.

Of course, I do feel horribly out of touch as regards new music, as the XFM playlist did usually pander to my own taste. I've discovered several new/new-to-me bands because of them, and even enjoyed most of the DJ banter. But maybe that's not such a bad thing. Even if I came across some new band, I can't afford to buy singles, let alone albums, right now and can't even begin to think about launching SlSk with this connection. I'd be back to the 1k/year download speeds.

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Today's job seeking chores

by Suw on September 15, 2003

OK, so I know this is as tedious for you as it is for me, but to document this job search publicly gives me a momentum I might otherwise not have. I'd hate for you to think I was sitting here on my arse having fun all day.

Today I have searched all the job web sites and phoned eight agencies, two of which promised to call me back and didn't. It may not sound like much, but it took me most of the day, barring the abortive attempt to go to the dentist. (They were expecting me at 11.40am, but for some reason had written 2pm on the reminder card. Clever. Will try again Thursday.)

So far, the attitude of the agents is far from encouraging. Trying to find a job in New Media, (is it even really 'new' anymore?), is a bit like trying to find Eldorado or Shangri La. As soon as you mention it to anyone, they start sniggering. Hopefully a job for me in New Media actually does exist, and with any luck it doesn't require hiking through Nepal or South American jungles to locate. Although frankly, I'm desperate enough at the moment to do either of those things, despite my normally sedentary life style.

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