So if you’ve read Part 1, you already know how smooth and flawless (SARCASM! SARCASM! SARCASM!) my first meeting with the Agency went. I met up with my grandmother, mom and sisters for lunch afterward and I told them with all the certainty in the world that I wouldn’t be hearing from them for forever. And when I told them what happened, my family, being the supportive and loving people that they are, laughed at and with me. I love them. My sisters reassured me that no matter how much of a loser I made myself out to be, I’m still pretty okay for a sister and a human being. My mom told me she’s proud of me for preferring to stay in than go out and party (of course you are, Mom). And my ever so wonderful grandmother said I’d eventually find the job that’s perfect for me. These people did such a good job at lifting my spirits up that by the time lunch was over, my biggest concern was buying a Dairy Queen M&M Blizzard.
A few hours after I got home, I received an email from the Agency’s secretary, informing me that the 22-year-old socially unkempt girl passed the initial screening . Whaaaat? I remember thinking, either I did something impressive that I was totally unaware of or they’re a bunch of crazy people who enjoyed my humiliation more than I did and wanted to see more of it. I figured I didn’t have anything to lose so I went ahead with it. The second screening was composed of two tests: a concept deck and a promotional teaser – both of which made me feel like I was a caveman trying to decipher Morse code. I understood the words in the instructions but I couldn’t understand what exactly I was supposed to do. The instructions were somewhat like this: Make a concept deck for a company celebrating its 25th anniversary, and create a promotional teaser for a themed-party. I’ve never had so many questions in my head than I did at that moment. What kind of company was it? What’s the theme of the party? When is the party? What on earth is a deck? Why did I apply for this job again? I was debating whether or not I should just forfeit my application, but I felt like it would be utterly stupid of me if I did. I thought passing that initial screening was impossible to begin with and the fact that I passed that was maybe God’s way of telling me this job might be good for me. So I did them both, all the while having no idea how to actually do them. I completed the tests and emailed it back to the secretary and, again, didn’t think I’d hear from them anymore.
I prayed about that every night because while I expected to fail that test, unlike the first screening, a part of me was hopeful for some bizarre reason.
Three days after, I received a text message, saying I passed the two exams and that I was scheduled for a final interview with the Creative Director three days later which, ironically, was April Fools’ Day. Of course I knew these people couldn’t possibly have a twisted sense of humor to invite me for the final interview then say, “Just kidding! You failed! Happy April Fools!” But, you know, the thought was there. Crazier things have happened – like, say, me getting that far.
Anyway, Monday came. I had my interview with the Creative Director – my potential boss, and the first thing he did was ask me when I could start working. I knew that question could only mean that I got the job but I was more dumbfounded than anything else. He quickly noticed my confusion (I’m guessing it was because of my poorly concealed blank stare). He went on to say how my writing was good and how my two exams exceeded both his expectations and the performance of all the other applicants. And I remember sitting there and thinking, Is he being serious right now? I have never in my life been complimented for a work that I was clueless and totally insecure about. It felt like I won Iron Chef for heating a pot of broth and mixing in random ingredients from cabbage to pork intestines and then exclaiming, “Ta-daaa!” But yeah, I was told that I got the job and I had until the 12th to decide if I want to take it or not.
Until now, I can’t sufficiently describe how I felt that day. There was no jumping up and down out of sheer joy. It was more of staring at a wall for a few minutes, then shaking my head with a smile on my face. I was like that for two days.
But on the third day, I received an email from the HR Head, the one who interviewed me during the first screening, saying the Creative Director didn’t have the authority to hire people, only he did and that my final final interview would be with him and that it would be held on the following day.
I swear at that moment, I looked up and said, “God, You have got to be kidding me!”