Monday, June 20, 2005

The Job Interview

Here's the text to a spoken-word track on Meryn Cadell's debut CD from a little over a decade ago. The artist's deadpan delivery is kind of what makes the track work, so you may have to just trust me--it's both very funny and very, very sad at the same time. (You may remember Cadell's "The Sweater," if you were listening to college radio circa 1993.)

I'd like to apply for a job
Yes, the job you have available
My manner is most saleable,
And I hope you'll find me suitable for $5.15 an hour.

I really have the skills, you see,
I've been to university
And though I studied history
I've found my heart to truly be
In mens ties and socks, glass figurines, the discount shoe industry.

What makes me think I'd be good for this job?
Well, I love working with people
And I love riding the subway an hour and a half each way,
Let's see, add those hours to my day
And I'll be making a whopping... $3.75 an hour!

No, sir--I do, I do want the job. Can't you tell by my suit?
No, actually, I don't own a dress.
I don't feel comfortable, I confess.
But, hell, for $5.15 an hour,
I'll endeavour to wear some colours other than black.

I enjoy working with the public, and I'm good with money ...
Oh yes, you're right, all us girls are good with money,
Yes that's charming, yes how funny.
I like a good work atmosphere where the boss says whatever he wants and the rest of us just listen.
I'm a very fast learner and I promise that if you give me this job
I'll be the perfect subhuman and never let my contempt shine
in my worshipping eyes...

I love working with people and, let's see, what else was I going to tell you...
No, I don't expect vacation pay
And yes I'm available every day
And though I don't like the evil way you're looking at me,
I've got rent to pay.
And, yes, I can start on Saturday.

There just something about the line "I like a good work atmosphere where the boss says whatever he wants and the rest of us just listen" that kills me every time.


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