Once I went to a job interview, it was a while ago now, and it just so happened to take a long time to get to the meeting spot. Maybe it was the long drive, or maybe it was the fact that the job just wasn’t for me. Either way, I walked away from it with a severe hatred for any corporate, intensely supervised and soul sucking career choice.
I’m not great at intense physical labor, but I’ve always had jobs that were not 100% office oriented. Even, way back when, I was an assistant for a college professor, a lot of my job was running around town, grabbing this and that. I was out and about.
So, here’s the thing: there is something unique to searching for a job, finding one and then reorienting your life to fit it. The interviewer, all that time ago, apparently didn’t even bother to read my resume. He prefaced his question with “It isn’t integral to the job, so you don’t have to answer if you don’t want to,” and I nodded, slowly saying “Okay…” He then asked, “Have you ever taken any business education, or business management courses?” I said “no,” to which he asked, “Do you have a college degree, or have ever attended a college before?”
It was on my resume. I had attended a college. Two in fact. Both bullet points under a nice little section I called “Education.” This particular person had his soul sucked out with the job; then he went on to ask me a multitude of annoying questions such as “It’s the fourth quarter and your expenditures per job, while not over budget, are one percent higher than the rest of the team in your regional division. Do you take your manager’s criticism of this as motivation, and how do you make sure to beat your team members by having them be the ones with the higher percentage rating and not yourself?”
I stared at the man blankly. Not because I couldn’t answer any of that. No. I could. In fact, I knew exactly what he meant. “Can you cut corners, work faster and find cheaper materials to save the company money and how soon can you get this done?” The reason why I stared at him was I couldn’t believe that I hadn’t even started and they were already telling me to come under budget, to fight for it and how much that mattered over customer appreciation.
“Yuck,” was the only thing I could think of, but I gave some BS answer anyway, and ran out of that interview as fast as I could.
That memory spurred the most recent comic “Demonianistic Diabolism.” I felt like Xir is having a premonition of what I went through BEFORE the interview even happens. He sees all these titles and educational requirements, which while normal in Hell, are not healthy for his alien brain. In the instance of that interview, I felt like I was at the doorsteps of a specific sort of Hell, and I was some alien gazing in unaware and uninformed about what was about to happen. All I knew was I didn’t want any of that.
Xir is a sort of analog for myself in these strips at times. While I have never been an alien banker in a past life, nor have any desire for such a thing, I certainly feel like I am an alien observing a species that aren’t even human most of the time. An alien in duplicate, really. Triple while job searching.
It’s three panels and very little dialogue, but as far as how it came about, and what I meant by it speaks volumes. I guess it’s a small nod to anyone who has ever had to think about, search, or interview for a new job. It’s all bizarre, and we’re just aliens looking in.