My Jobs Report Month 16

I wondered how this timing would feel. Christmas was the 16 month anniversary of my job search. (Step back through the months by following the earlier posts.) The short version: No job yet. The longer version: There are some intriguing possibilities, but that’s been the case before too. The even longer version: Well, that’s why I blog; otherwise my 500+ friends on facebook and my almost 300 connections on LinkedIn would only have to check my profile to see if anything has changed. We humans don’t track stories that way.

Christmas Day was fine. There was no big drama fest. I was impacted more by a persistent cold than by my financial net worth. I’d planned a very small event, maybe with a friend or two, but my contagion was a good reason to make it a solo event. There weren’t many gifts, so those I received stood out more than usual; and just like back at Thanksgiving, for me the day was a great excuse to play in the kitchen.

  • Ham(tradition!)
  • Yams (they’re orange and rhyme with ham)
  • Baked beans (comfort food is comforting)
  • Fried/sauteed brussel sprouts (there must be a nod towards green)
  • Cornbread (gluten-free of course)
  • Squashed Pear Pie (made like pumpkin with pears chopped and mixed in, and baked in the squash shell)
  • Wine (2002 Trimbach Gewurtztraminer as I pull from my old wines, this one making me wonder if there’s a family tie)
  • Tea (plenty of fluids, eh?)

I’ve got leftovers for weeks.

Squashed Pear Pie
As for jobs, the days before Christmas were more intriguing.

Earlier in the month I was celebrating one of those sole-proprietor moments – depositing money. For a number of reasons, mostly because I like people, I make the deposits with the teller. They know me. We have a good time visiting. It was a busy day, but quiet enough that I overheard a dude talking to the bank manager. The dude was slouched in the visitor’s chair looking very relaxed. He was there for an interview, but he really didn’t want the job. He just had to apply and show up so he could maintain his unemployment benefits. Of course, there was more, but that’s the part I heard. Maybe he said it as a joke. I don’t know. I finished my business and departed.

A week or so ago I walked back in to make another deposit. (Consulting with artists and entrepreneurs was better than expected in December.) I was the only customer, but the crew was busy. There’s a lot of work to do even without customers walking into the bank. They are understaffed and told me about it. Over the months I’ve applied for such jobs, but suspected the resume bots were throwing out my applications because the certifications were more important than the skills. I had nothing to lose, so I walked over to the manager and asked him about how I could help. He listened to my verbal resume, and told me to apply again, and email him as I did so. That way he could make sure my application made it to his desk. Merry Christmas. The interview is tomorrow. Stay tuned.

The day before Christmas held another event. A friend wanted some enthusiasm for her project, so she called me for some motivation. Sure, I can do that. I’m a fan of her project. Amidst that phone call we talked about another of her projects that is languishing for a variety of reasons. Then she realized that project had enough funds to hire me to put together the larger plan and write the appropriate grants that could fund the grand plan. But first I have to write a proposal. If that course is successful, I might play a role that would pay me a full time wage while working from home on a project that uses and requires decades of experience with computers and computing. After I type this post, I’ve got to write a proposal for how I’ll write a proposal. Stay tuned.

While all of that is going on, another friend and fellow job searcher succeeded and became a well-paid employee of a major corporation. She knows me and the job, and knows that I have the skills they need. For her first few hectic weeks, we’ve played telephone and email tag as she coaches the reformatting of my resume to match her company’s style. I’m waiting for a phone call from her as I type. She found a job that she thinks I’m right for. Now we have to step through all of the official and unofficial steps in the employee referral process. Stay tuned.

Sixteen months of looking. Typing that made me pause. If I’d spent all of that time in school I’d be most of the way to an associate’s degree, or would have already completed the certification process for a variety of skills. I’ve got plenty of experience. I just didn’t get the official titles and certificates along the way. I was more interested in getting the job done than in padding my resume. Maybe focusing on the work instead of the honors was one of my luxuries I enjoyed during my temporary early semi-retirement. In any case, I launched into my job search thinking it would take three to six months, not sixteen. The optimist in me continually expects the good news to be imminent. Maybe now it will come to fruition.

These three intriguing possibilities have a couple of things in common: each involves a personal connection, and each has some way of working around the resume process. And of course, nothing is guaranteed. And of course, the world provides unimaginable positive surprises.

So, I sit here, finishing this post, waiting for the phone to ring and also hesitant if it does. The mortgage company continues their barrage and I don’t have caller ID.

I’m looking forward to 2013, partly because another aspect of my life provided a wonderful encouragement. I got into a conversation with one of the local librarians about carrying my most recent ebook (Walking Thinking Drinking Across Scotland). By the end of the conversation she’d booked me for talks on three separate subjects (Scotland, photos of Whidbey, and Social Media). She held herself back with a laugh and said something like, “It looks like 2013 will be the Year of Tom Trimbath.” That has stayed with me since.

I don’t know what’s going to happen. Maybe many things will happen simultaneously, and I’ll have to pick from and manage many good possibilities. Okay, I’m envisioning myself sitting across the desk from Jon Stewart as we tape my interview on The Daily Show. One thing is for sure. However this works out, I definitely have a story to tell.

Stay tuned.

About Tom Trimbath

real estate broker / consultant / entrepreneur / writer / photographer / speaker / aerospace engineer / semi-semi-retired More info at: and at my amazon author page:
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1 Response to My Jobs Report Month 16

  1. Susan Averett says:

    Wonderfully encouraging post – so happy to hear of all these options popping up! Surely 2013 really will be your year! Yayy!

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