Tuesday, July 11, 2006

The Oldest Intern

I had an interview for an internship this morning with a local, Atlanta newspaper. I imagined Wanda Sykes in the starring role of a comedy about a forty-something year old intern delivering a joke about having shoes older than her twenty-two year old, blond, girl-next-door boss, on a date with a co-worker fifteen years her junior, and winning the admiration of a generation X staff for having delivered a lunch of home-cooked fried chicken, red beans and rice, collard greens and corn bread.

I had to drive to downtown Atlanta in the morning rush, which meant I had to leave home at least an hour and a half early to make a trip that in normal traffic would have only taken thirty minutes. I reminded myself that if I got the internship I’d have to make that trip twice a week. I managed to get there about ten minutes early to take in the glass, concrete and steel, warehoused newspaper environs.

She was about fifteen minutes late. My interviewer was neither blond nor girl-next-door. She was, I believe, maybe ten years younger, with short twists and a no-nonsense personality. When I told her about my decision to leave my job, her immediate response was, “don’t give up those benefits,” which I didn’t expect to hear, but then she mentioned something about being ex-military. My soon-to-be ex-job is infested with ex-military and a “got to have those government benefits” mentality, so I privately excused her.

The job would mostly consists of typing in the information for upcoming events, no real or guaranteed opportunities for writing, unless like a couple of interns you are a real go-getter, or you bug the hell out of someone. (Perhaps I will get one of those chances.) And, of course its not a paid internship, but “we still expect you to be on time”. Then, she sprung it on me: a spelling test and, one of those ‘editing’ test where you have to make sure a comma is in the right place, “achieve”, hmmm, “ ‘i’ before e except after ‘c’” I felt like I had to prove I was an English major.

All in all I felt good about the interview. I believe I have just as good a chance as any college student. Although sometimes I think my age and maturity gives me a better chance in some situations. Even if I don’t get much of a chance to write, I’d like to be in the environment for the experience, networking purposes and a resume builder.



At 6:33 PM , Anonymous S. Clark said...

What a difference, or not, as it were, that eight whole years makes! The, "15-Minutes-Late," Interviewer has returned to the military and hence, no longer, ex-military and clinging to her government benefits like a wino clutching a bottle! Her locs are long and she is much wiser (always be on time because people will write about you on the world wide web).

But the Author of this Blog has changed, too! Her skill and talent as a writer is simply awesome and often hard to describe. She writes from a place in her soul that has seen miracles, hurt and love. I envy her spirit, her drive, and her courage. And, I am proud to call her my friend.

At 5:26 PM , Blogger persistence said...

OMGooodnesss, sis! Thank you soooo much! It has, indeed, been a long time, and we have both changed and grown in so many different and beautiful ways. But, it's been so long since I worked this space, I had to try and figure out how to publish your comment...lol...smooches!


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