aqua fortis

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Not the Brightest Bulb in the Chandelier

Originally uploaded by Aquafortis.

I like that saying. It accurately describes some of the drunken spazmasters who were seated in front of us at the Tool concert we went to Sunday night in Oakland. I took this photo between the performance and the encore. Normally, these days at concerts you see people holding up cell phones instead of lighters (at least that's what happened at the Red Hot Chili Peppers show) but this crowd had lighters in abundance.

I know I haven't posted in a few days. I was stuck in computer hell--Rob's laptop had to be wiped clean and everything reloaded, but at least I was able to retrieve our files first. However, the whole process was exceedingly time-consuming and annoying.

Yesterday I finally finished the job, but then I was scheduled to conduct a phone interview for the Mills Quarterly. I found the subject of this interview to be very intimidating, plus because of the computer fiasco I wasn't as prepared for the interview as I should have been, so I think I came off sounding kind of dim. Rob points out that she's probably been interviewed by some VERY dim bulbs over the years and that this couldn't possibly have been all that bad. He's probably right, but I can't help but think she had to be underwhelmed by my incisive line of questioning. "Um, uh, so, could you talk about your, you know, time at the Fine Arts Museums, like, what led up to you working there?"

Phone interviews are tough anyway, because you can't really gauge how the person is reacting to you or your questions. I had started to think I was actually better at interviews than I thought, because my last two for the Quarterly went so well. Now I realize I'm good at in-person interviews; I'm not so good at phone interviews. Oh, well. You can't be good at everything. But I try.


TadMack said...

This chickie even LOOKS intimidating. I can't imagine wanting to just chat with her.

I basically suck on the telephone at all... once I've said what I wanted, I cannot seem to make conversation. No one who hears me now would ever imagine that once D. and I lived hours apart and always talked on the phone.

Or maybe they would. He actually regularly talked me to sleep

All right. Now I'm sounded dim too.

TadMack said...

SoundING. See? Dimness is catching.

DaviMack said...

Hey, TadMack. Six Words: Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. Heh heh. Two pages of that, and she's done for. Anything in Middle English, actually, 'though Sir Gawain works much better than Chaucer. Probably because she's heard the first two pages so often that it's along the lines of a lullaby.

About the interview: you can be a good interviewer and still have a POOR INTERVIEWEE. Whether this person is a genius or whatever, I've had interviews where I know I've come across as a complete and utter moron, simply because I don't have a common frame of reference.

So much of conversation is about body language & tone of voice, and if the other person doesn't match up to someone you're comfortable with & can use as a gauge of what they're thinking / feeling, you just won't be able to connect. It's nothing at all to do with your interview skills, believe me. It's also to do with whether you think about things in the same way that the other person does - whether you're thinking relationally & they're thinking structurally, or whatever.