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Thursday, April 21, 2005

Noting my particulars

Its job hunting time! WooHoo!

So far, I have identified precisely 1 job that I am interested in. The deadline is this week, so I have dusted off my CV (resume to those over the lake), drafted a suitably grovelling cover letter and downloaded the University's standard application form.

The form is an object lesson in political correctness (and bad design). It runs to 3 pages.
Page 1 is all about little old me. Who I am, where I live and whether I am getting it on a regular basis (or failing that, married).
Page 2 contains space for 3 referees. Fortunately, only 2 are required, so I won't be asking for a glowing reference from SWMNBN! If the interviewer asks why I have only volunteered 2 and not included my 3rd supervisor, I can say with all honesty that I have never physically worked under the supervision of SWMNBN, so she didn't seem appropriate. Our experimental officer has known me for years, and drunkenly agreed to do the honours if necessary at the conference last week, if a 3rd referee is required.

Page 3 is a hoot. Its detachable and "purely for statistical purposes". Three-quarters of the page is taken up by tick boxes describing my ethnicity. At the end of it it says "Other". Over the years I have worked with something like 40 nationalities and am aquaintances with a similar number more. Just about every single one of them was covered and more. I would dearly love to know just what people would write in the "Other" box. Klingon?

The last question cracked me up though: "Do you consider yourself to be disabled?".
I was so tempted to write "No, I firmly believe that more than one of each limb is excessive and wasteful".

My biggest gripe though is that we are encouraged to fill in the forms and send them by email. Suits me, I am forever trying to lick those new adhesive stamps so pressing "Send" is a far tastier option. Unusually, the employer have had the foresight to supply the form as a Word document. But the mindset is still very much that of a handwritten form. Most of the options are tick boxes, requiring me to make a tick mark drawing object (Word doesn't have one strangely). They also ask for your Signature at the end.

Oh well. If I get offered an interview I'll keep you posted. Meanwhile the search continues...



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