testing 1, 2, 3…..

Well, hopefully soon I will be able to slow down a little and enjoy life. I’ve been focusing all my energy lately on trying to stay off of my bosses sh*t list (that means pumping out work from 8-5 all day similar to that of a t-shirt factory in the Philippines) and look for another job.

One of the jobs that I had a bite on recently I had to take one of their engineering entrance exams to see if I qualified. Prior to that, I tried to get my hands on every practice test I could find on the internet and take. These consisted of several logical and mathematical questions that built off the prior one. The first couple of sample tests I had consisted of all water. “You work for a water company and your job is to identify customer service needs, future increase in usages and decline.” It was a ton of math, y’all and you couldn’t use a calculator on the test. Everything had to be done on a scratch paper by hand .I had to go on you tube and refresh myself on videos of multiplication and long division as I haven’t done this stuff since 5th grade.

In the meantime, HR for the company kept failing to upload my status of qualifying to take the test. Every day I had to call this lady and ask when this would be completed as I hadn’t heard anything from anyone about scheduling the thing. This went on for three weeks. It was so frustrating. During that time I just kept studying. Finally, the end of last week I got a call from HR saying they hoped to have it loaded that day and to look for an email. Hours later I got the email confirmation and went ahead and signed up to take it this past Saturday. I was like, Its now or never!

When I got the email confirmation attached were two more sample tests. I printed those out and studied them both. These were, “You work for a power company and your job is to identify…….” You get the gist. Water, power, gas, etc.

Saturday, I drove to the testing facility that also was a tax service. I had to have three forms of ID’s in order to get in to take the test. Which meant that Friday when I got home from work I was sitting on the porch drinking a beer thinking, Where is that social security card……..

That kind of thinking got me out of my chair running into my office, hauling my desk drawer out (which, Charlie says is a nightmare that I need to clean out) and dumping it on the floor going through everything…….no card. My heart started beating faster……….where is it??!!

I opened my locked trunk and looked in there. Nothing. Please don’t tell me I’m not going to get a job because I can’t prove that I’m not an illegal alien!

I went into the bedroom and hauled my dresser drawer out and dumped everything onto the bed. Nothing. I sat down, where could it be?

Finally, I went into one of my files that I keep all the vehicle titles and there it was. I almost collapsed with relief.

When I got to the facility I handed the woman checking me in four forms of identification including my ss card and she laughed.

“I just wanted to make sure I covered all the bases,” I said.

Once I signed this really long form saying that I wouldn’t cheat, lie or steal to pass this test I was led into a room and given a locker key to lock up all my personal items before going into the testing room. There was a computer monitor sitting on the desk and the scratch paper consisted of two plastic dry erase sheets and a marker. By the end of the test I would have used 10 of those things that the lady sitting at the desk watching me take it said, “More?” She couldn’t believe I was using that many sheets. “Yes, please”

Its math, bitch, I wanted to say.

The test was very similar to the sample ones I’d taken. Although, I was having problems with a simple conversion were several questions required that conversion in order to answer. There was a way to mark the questions you’d come back to and I marked all of the ones that I was having difficulty with. It was at least 10 or 12 problems. I had 2-1/2 hours to do this thing, I wasn’t worried until –

-I looked at the clock on my computer and it said I had 54 minutes left and I was only on question 31 (there were 53 total) and I had all those marked ones to go back to.

Don’t freaking panic, you. I told myself. Don’t.Freaking.Panic………OMG! I’M PANICKING…………….BREATHE, BREATHE, BREATHE…….

I practically flew through 31-53. By the time I went back to my marked problems the clock was counting down from 9 minutes.

Breathe, dammit…..

I went through all the marked problems barely having time to read any of them and marked every one of them. Charlie echoed in my mind, Just answer every question no matter what. Finally, I answered the last question as the clock counted down from 20 seconds. I hit the finish button and then they had the nerve to ask me to complete a questionnaire – Oh, but no worries – you have 5 minutes to do it.

Whatever. I didn’t pass. I did my best and now it’s time to go home and drink a beer. I finished the questionnaire, stood up and left the room.

The lady sitting at the desk said, Are you finished?

Yes. I hung my head.

Did you pass?

I don’t know. It didn’t tell me.

Just then, a piece of paper spit out on the printer behind her and she reached around and took it. She looked at it and handed it to me. You passed!

What?! Wow! Really?

Yes, it wouldn’t have said, ‘Qualified’ if you didn’t.

I couldn’t believe it. I went out to the truck after collecting my things and thanking those ladies a thousand times even though it was me taking the exam and took a picture of my confirmation form and texted to Charlie.

I went home and drank several beers after that. So, now you think I can get that job after going through all that? I’m calling that HR woman as soon as she gets in today.

same ol’ sh*t chex mix

This month is continuing to be the mutha-f*cker last month was. I’m sorry I’m so negative but Charlie and I have been hit with a ton of stuff. Things at both of our jobs have been quite difficult which both have to do with staffing needs or lack of help.

The job front is still looking bleak despite my many interviews. I have one small bite but nothing is panning out yet. I’m really ready to move on. Last night, I sat in traffic forever after working late at the office and stopped off at the grocery store to pick up stuff to make for dinner. I thought Charlie and I could sit outside and commiserate over work, have some beers and grill out. What ended up happening was opening a letter from my mortgage company informing me that my property taxes increased and that I owed them $2500 in escrow to be paid by April 1st (the date is not lost on me) and if I didn’t pay it my monthly payments would go up almost $300. I sat on the phone while the escrow woman explained everything to me then I was informed that I was eligible for a re-finance and, hold, while they transfer me over. Then, I was on the phone with a loan officer for another hour going through the application process. If this does go through it will decrease my monthly payments by $300. But, it was exhausting. That was the last thing I wanted to do was hang on the phone all night and talk about my mortgage.

Tonight, I am hoping for a do-over. I don’t want to get the mail or answer the phone. The weather has been exceptional here despite it being March. Last Sunday we rode up to Gainesville to see some friends and to have lunch. It was nice to ride without so much winter gear on and not feeling like I was the Michelin Man. This weekend it’s going to start raining Saturday evening and last for a week. Charlie and I are going to try to get our first landscaping job of the season installed Saturday afternoon before it comes in.

So, y’all haven’t missed much. It’s been the same ol’ sh*t here. You’ll be the first to know if that changes.