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Personal Angst
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Well that's a nice, simple, straightforward question. And the answer is equally simple and straightforward: They don't give a shit about you.

That would be why. This is a simple, yet profound, principle of life it is occasionally to your advantage to be aware of. It governs many of your interactions with Other People, frequently when you'd least like a nasty little principle of life like that to be governing anything.

As a occasional job-seeker myself (don't ask me why I would actually seek out a job when I don't really like them - because I honestly don't remember), I have read the fair sprinkling of Job Search Advice articles and so on. Many of them try to point out to You, the potential job-seeker, that the people who you will be dealing with as part of the job search process don't really give a shit about you. They try to phrase it delicately, they beat around the bush, they hope you will get the hint, but they really wish you would get a clue and understand that they, as the potential job-hiring people, do not really give a shit about you. You are a Necessary Inconvenience, a Pain in the Ass, an opportunity to have unrewarding contact with Other People whose feelings they will have to hurt, and all they really want out of life is not to have to deal with people like you any more because someone who doesn't bother them is already doing the work that would otherwise cause them even more inconvenience if for some reason it wasn't done.

Employers really only advertise jobs when it is more painful not to and they just can't stand the shit they have to go through not advertising one. Really. If the right number and kind of employees would just magically show up at their place of employment and get everything done without any attention whatsoever, employers would be much happier. But they're not usually. They're not happy at all usually. The exception to this rule is the Throwing Around Cash Before It Goes Away and You Don't Even Get to Enjoy Throwing it Around Anymore Phenomenon. This is the boom-time mode of hiring, when they'll hire anyone just to enjoy the sensation of throwing around money that won't be around forever. But normally, hiring people is painful. It is like trying to figure out who to marry. It seems so fucking important! And yet, how can you know the person you are saddled with won't have bad breath in the morning? It could all work out so badly. And frequently, quite frankly, it does.

This is just a little bonus insight for you - the people you are talking about are in pain, job-hiring pain, and this is one of the things that makes them act like dickheads. People in pain are frequently dickheads. They don't like interviewing you, they don't like meeting you, they don't like making a decision, they don't like having to make a decision, and they don't like the fact that they themselves are employed in the first place and have to deal with this kind of shit when they'd much rather win the lottery and retire.

As it turns out, you are in your own kind of pain, and you really don't give a shit yourself what kind of pain other people are in. You've got your own problems. Both of you are grumpy and in a bad mood that you're there at all and both of you are trying to pretend you're not. Job-getting is based on mutual lying for social purposes and that is one of the reasons you are in a bad mood now. You fucking lied about having a good attitude, the least they could fucking do is lie about 'being really impressed with your qualifications and definitely keeping you in mind for another position should it become available.' That's just the fucking rules of the game as far as you're concerned. Or at least it fucking ought to be. If you had to go and fucking be polite to people you don't like, the least they could fucking do is be polite to you!

So you are all pissed off. This is completely natural. One of the things that pisses people off the most is when the unspoken rules of any game are violated by some dickhead Other Person who looks like they are playing it. You fucking hate that! It's the worst because in order to point out to them that they fucking violated the rules is to explain the Unspoken Rules to them, which means speaking them, which is absolutely fucking ridiculous and wrong because the whole fucking point of Unspoken Rules is that they're fucking Unspoken! Dickheads! Everyone knows that! What's fucking wrong with them.

People hate this kind of shit not just in job searches, but in actual jobs, and Social Situations and during Family Things, and random Encounters with Other People. People are always fucking complaining to me about some Family Member In Law violating some goddamn unspoken rule and them having to sit there and take it because there's no fucking way they're going to sit there and fucking speak an Unpsoken Rule. Ho no! You're not catching me doing that! I didn't just fall off a fucking turnip truck or something, I know the rules of Not Speaking Unspoken Rules.

And you hate this, because if people aren't even going to follow the goddamn fucking Unspoken Social Rules how the fuck are you ever supposed to judge whether or not you have a good shot at the job! They're not supposed to lie in the fucking interview about whether they think you're wonderful - they're supposed to lie later when they don't give you the job - that's when they're supposed to fucking tell you you're wonderful when you're not. Assholes! Why didn't they just fucking act like they didn't give a shit about you during the goddamn interview - which is when they're supposed to do it - so you wouldn't even want the job and you could fucking cross them off your list whether they called or not! They are getting it all backwards and fucking you up! That's inconsiderate! Jeez, every fucking idiot ought to know when to lie during the job interview process and when not to. Man, you just gotta shake your head at these pieces of work.

So the first thing you need to do is what me and all my friends do (and I know you have just been dying all along to imitate us, sparkling people that we are) - which is complain very loudly to Other People Who Do Know The Rules about the ones who don't. It's okay to explain the unspoken rules to people who already know them! That's fun! That's fair! That's relieving. And even more importantly, it helps shore up those endangered social rules in your own mind, which is where they are being attacked by other people who don't follow them.

So what I want you to do is burden a lot of people who already know you and are used to it, by explaining the rules to them. Like this: 'The least they could do is call back! That's just common courtesy. I mean basic decency says at least acknowledge someone you interviewed you know? It's like...what has our society come to? It's like nobody gives a shit any more, you know? About the basic standards, you know?' Etc. Make up your own Unspoken Social Rules if you'd like - and explain them to people! It will make you feel a whole lot better. You can do this lots and lots, until you are bored or find a job. And by the time you get through subjecting close friends and acquaintances to all this, they will be very motivated to see you get one! They know your feelings have been hurt, they know there's nothing they can do about it, they know they can't explain to you the Unspoken Social Rule that hey - looking for a job fucking sucks and lots of people are rude. So they will just listen to you and hope your upsetting situation goes away eventually. This is a good deal for you! Take advantage of it.

Do not, under any circumstances, however, explain these unspoken social rules to the people who have violated them. Not only is that just plain bad form, you also run the terrible risk they will deny that such a Social Rule even exists! You don't want that! You like the 'call back job seekers rule' even if you made it up yourself. You certainly don't want to hear from anyone that it's not actually a rule of the game. That would make it a Really Terrible Game, and you're not all that fond of it to begin with. Protect yourself! Only express yourself with people who will agree with you (or at least who will be too intimidated to let you know if they don't).

Okay, now that we have soothed your feelings just a tiny smidgeon, we'll move on to the next step. Remember to firmly establish with yourself that calling people back ought to be a Social Rule. Now - pretend that it isn't one. Using your handy super-duper they don't give a shit about you analysis, reason your way to the next step. They don't give a shit about you - you, however, give a shit about getting a fucking job. Therefore, if any calling is to be done, you will do it. You will not rely on them, obviously they are unreliable squirts by nature, you will rely on yourself. When you call them up and they tell you the job went to someone else, you will curse them to high heaven, summon up your rage, and implement the Instant Voodoo Karma of being very upset and hoping they all go to hell. Then you will get busy being very devastated and disappointed and discouraged and depressed and maybe some other D words if you are feeling energetic.

But you will still feel better. The reason being - because your conniving, maniacal job-searching little brain is giggling in the background to itself, knowing it has The Mighty Power To Call People Even If They Do Not Call You! Hah hah! It rules the world, or at least it thinks it does. Your brain loves having power, so you want to indulge it by doing things like this that will make it think it has some.

This is very important because you are actually inclined in such a situation to be absolutely fucking convinced you don't have any power whatsoever. This is a logical, yet painful, outgrowth of the Give Me a Fucking Job I Really Fucking Need One! process. We'll explain why in a second, but first we'll note that pretending to have power can be unexpectedly helpful. This business of calling people who don't call you is also sometimes known as Expressing Extra Interest in a Job. And sometimes it turns the tide. Sometimes it doesn't, particularly in today's economy, but sometimes it's just the kind of coercive pressure that will make people who don't otherwise want to have anything to do with you suddenly give in and hire you. People, including job-hirers, are naturally inclined to roll downhill and follow the path of least resistance. This means that if you call them up and Express Extra Interest it will make it seem to them like maybe there's some kind of expectation somewhere that you get this job, which means they'd really rather just go along with it rather than figure out some energy-consuming alternative. In many ways they'd prefer that you just came in and sort of took the job without any particular fanfare and then they wouldn't have to go to the trouble of doling it out. Not everyone is like this, but most people are, most of the time.

And most people who are seeking jobs, most of the time, think that jobs are just sort of given by the people that have them, so they wait around patiently, not calling, or being polite, as though the job was going to be given to them like a gift on Christmas and it would be rude to ask for it early. This seems like a natural attitude, not because people are lazy (although they are) or even because they are afraid of being rude but because well hell....if someone else has a job to give out and you don't, naturally, logically, structurally it would seem like the transaction would have to be that they would give it to you. It seems to make perfect sense. And in reality, maybe it does make perfect sense. But it is not to your advantage. Especially not right now. Not when you need a job. And judging from your rant, you feel like you do. Because there is another nasty little principle of the universe working against you right now, quite apart from the 'doesn't give a shit about you' principle. So we must address that.

And we will. In the next page, when we address the politics of need.

The implacable universal principles of need.....


Now that you've got a job - you fucking hate it!

Now that you're unemployed again, it's time to investigate how fucked up you really are....

Now that you're all pissed's time to dump your girlfriend!

Special Vocabulary Word: Assholes

And just why do asshole guys get all the chicks?

More Vocabulary:

Fucked Up Shit

By the way, why are people so stupid?



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