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Out of left field

April 18th, 2008

I’ve got nothing for you today people.  We took a small load of stuff to the house last night.  I got a couple of boxes unpacked in the kitchen.  I could have taken a picture of the new washer and dryer but thought I would spare you that boredom.

When the well at Chez Smiles is dry, I tend to read other blogs with an eye toward inspiration.  This morning, the only thing that hit me was Stiletto’s post about a job interview.   It made me think of the most bizarre interview I ever had.

A small city south of the ‘Burgh was advertising for a position working with their program for homeless women.  Right up my bleeding heart alley!  (Quick aside – this was a couple of months after I started dating Steve…but I had decided before I met him to look for a job in the ‘Burgh and move there.)  I knew little about details of the program or the position prior to my arrival.  I just hoped they would pay enough that I wouldn’t become one of the homeless women.

I sat down with the director and an associate director in a little office.  They started chatting about the program, its mission, their beliefs, etc.  Within the first 5 minutes of chat, one of them threw out the word “fornicate”.  Seriously.  I’ve had some weird job interviews but I’ve never heard that word used in a job interview before.  Add to that, I had just spent the night before my interview at my boyfriend’s apartment and I was getting a little uncomfortable.  The tone of things started to turn very religious.  I don’t have a problem with that as long as religion doesn’t interfere with what is best for the clients.  (I once had a minister tell me to have my client apologize to her husband for whatever she had done to make him beat her so she could go home – so it isn’t unheard of for religion to interfere with what is best for a client.  And yes, that might have been the first and only time in my life I told a minister he was going to hell.  Okay, I didn’t say it out loud.  Or did I?)

I was used to programs receiving government funding and therefore working very hard to avoid any mention of religion.  This program used only private funding and was religion based.  Actually religion saturated.  Again, I’m not overly religious but I see therapy and case management as being mostly separate from spiritual guidance so I didn’t see any reason it couldn’t co-exist.  But one of those things that is nice to know before you show up to the interview.  Then the interview began.  The first question?  “Why do you think Jesus died on the cross for you?”  I was floored.  I have never been so thrown by an interview question in all of my life.  I stammered out an answer.  I have little memory of any question after that because I couldn’t get beyond that first question.  Before I left, I just told them that I didn’t think I was a good fit for the job.  I didn’t want to and wasn’t qualified to do the kind of work I do from a religious angle.  We shook hands and parted ways wishing each other well.

Almost a month later, I came home to a 10 minute answering machine message from the man who interviewed me.  He started out with how much they liked me, how sorry they were that we weren’t a good fit, how I had a good heart, yada yada yada.  And by the end of the message had almost talked himself into hiring me.  Nice people.  Weird interview.

This entry was posted on Friday, April 18th, 2008 at 6:59 am and is filed under Misc.. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

9 Responses to “Out of left field”

  1. Dirkey Says:

    Thats a shame!
    Never had one like that! (and I have worked a couple jobs for religious organizations)

  2. artsweet Says:

    I don’t think my immediate answer to that question (did he really? why do you think so?) would have gone over very well. Did you have any warning going into the interview that it was such a fundy organization?

  3. Dawn from old AB Says:

    I was just thinking today that you should write a memoir. I love to read memoirs and your’s is the only blog I read. Probably something to that. Plus you write very well, and certainly could be published if you haven’t already.

  4. Alleen Says:


  5. melany Says:

    LOL. I think that interview was totally worth it just so you have that story to tell! I would have LOVED to be a fly on the wall listening to you answer the question.

  6. Bobbi Says:

    I always love your stories!!

  7. karen Says:

    This gal was just so pathetic. She was practically begging me to want the job, and really, all I could think of was this place reminded me of a morgue. Seriously. I knew it would absolutely suck the life out of me.

  8. Samantha Says:

    wow, that is a remarkable story. i’m actually speechless.

  9. erinberry Says:

    Oh my! That’s all I can say!!

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