October 26th, 2006

morning glories

She's a Snarl-toothed Seether!

I just got done leaving pghwob a more than moderately manic voicemail (sorry 'bout that). The gist: I had my interview today, which went really fucking well. This makes me doubly happy, considering what I was up against today.

For starters, I was awakened by a phone call from a bill collector, trying to get me to put my credit card debt from my heroin years onto another credit card. How this will help anyone (aside from her) is beyond me. But it was a lengthy conversation, and it put me in a rotten mood to start the day.

And then I found out that the weekend plans that I was working so hard to put together aren't going to work out after all -- while I managed to switch my schedule, pghwob was unable to shift his. I suspect I'll still be going with n0thingman and lilostitch, and perhaps getting together later with pghwob, but it was tremendously frustrating to feel like I'd gotten this close to finding a way to make four impossible schedules all fit together, only to discover that nope, it can't be done.

So this is the state of frustration that I was in before I ever even got my shower this morning, let alone headed out for my interview.

But you know what? I want this fucking job, and I know I'd be good at it. So by the time 2:30 rolled around, I had my game face on (thank you to pghwob, Tom, and Shannon for on-the-fly pep talks), along with my Grandmother's ring (for good luck), and I went in there and basically presented them with the attitude that if they gave me this job, it was gonna be all fine. And dig this: they actually said that I gave a much better interview this time around than I did in January. They said I seemed more confident, more sure in my own skin. And I thought (but didn't actually say): Hmmm ... guess dumping that two-timing asshole agrees with me, eh?

That sounds like sarcasm and snark, but I actually think it's pretty close to the heart of the matter. I was so fucking afraid of leaving him, of not having him in my life, and of being alone. But even with that fear ever-present, when the chips were down and I found myself in an untenable situation, I looked my fear in the face and stood my fucking ground. And yes, it was horrible, and yes, it was incredibly painful. But oh, the things that standing up for herself can do for a girl.

The epilogue to this story is especially fitting. After nailing my interview and running a few errands (including picking up a roll of film, which I will post this evening), I decided to treat myself to a leisurely lunch at Quiet Storm. I ate my spinach wrap, wrote in my notebook for a bit, and then settled in to read Susan Faludi's Backlash (I know -- nothing like a little light reading, right?). A magician came by, and his schtick was pretty loud and distracting, so I headed to the counter to pay. And who should I discover sitting there, two feet away from me, but Susan. I swear -- it's like the fucking bitch is following me.

But see, this is exactly the reason why I would be a great manager: when she comes into the store, or when I see her at one of my favorite hangouts, I don't engage, I don't fight, I just ignore her and go on with my life. It's like when Rob came into the store this past weekend. He came through my line and tried to chat me up -- asked how our new P.O.S. system was going -- and I smiled and was cheerful and said "so far, so good." And the entire rest of our conversation consisted of the phrases "paper or plastic?" and "debit or credit?"

Oh, how far I've come from the hysterical mess that I was this past spring. I still work in a place where I come into frequent contact with the people who treated me really badly, but now I've learned how to be professional -- how to stand tall, keep my cool, and not let them fuck with me any more.

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is what would make me a kick ass manager. I'm ready now. And I want it.

We'll find out next week.