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A couple of years ago, I had an interview for a training contract that included a sort of "audition". I was asked to prepare a one hour training course on anything I wanted, and deliver it to a room full of people who would later be interviewing me individually. One of the "students" in the class was audibly bored, vocally belligerent, and actively disruptive. This didn't bother me because I'd taught classes full of such types before.
It was later revealed to me that this person's purpose in the class was to try to rattle me. I suspected that, but I figured it was her personal purpose, and not her assigned task. Like I said, she didn't rattle me and I got through my class as planned. This practice struck me as being mildly dishonest, but it didn't bother me too much, and although I didn't get that contract (I don't think anybody did, actually.) it did lead to me getting another contract at that company, so whatever.
Last week I had a dream about another strange job interview. When I arrived at the job interview, I was led into a classroom where, although I had arrived on time for my interview, a seminar of some kind was already in progress. The subject matter was very boring, the chairs were too soft, and the room was too hot, making it difficult to keep my eyes open. Some of the slides in the presentation were odd, with strange layout, and sections that throbbed in and out of focus. We were given a sort of newspaper, that contained reference articles for the talk. It had printing on the front and back. The presenter pointed out that one of the articles in the paper covered three major points. I didn't see that article, so I flipped the paper over. I found the article, but it only had two points. I flipped back, to see if the article was continued, but now the other side was completely blank. Upon closer inspection, I discovered the mechanism by which this trick was achieved. Waving my paper, I strode up to the presenter and asked, "What's the deal with the trick papers? What do you hope to discover?"
The presenter smiled broadly and shrugged. "Oh, anything," the presenter chuckled.
"I think you'll find that some people don't react well to this kind of dishonesty," I said. I put my newspaper on the presenter's work table, noticed I wasn't wearing any pants, and woke up. I couldn't get back to sleep for 30 minutes.
2008.12.29 at 12:00am EST
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