Every job I've ever had: part 11.
While working for the professor, my life completely fell apart. First, Professor Keller passed away. My Ph.D. plans totally derailed, despite gaining admission and funding from a program. My “relationship” of five years finally imploded. I was too old to be living at home. My career stalled. You get the picture. So I decided to try my luck at the Big Apple one more time. I applied and interviewed for dream job after dream job, but I suspect the smell of desperation was all over me. Finally, I started talking to a lecture agency that represented some pretty big names, making it passed the interview and onto the spec project — nothing like giving away some work for free to get a job. Lucky for me, as I stood alone at a venue on the day of my high school BFFs’ marriage to one another, my phone rang. The job was mine, and so it was back to NYC.
Job #18 - Marketing maven.
Age at time of employment: 27-28
Qualifications: Everything up to this point?
Employer: Royce Carlton.
Application process: Resume, cover letter, interview, spec project.
Onboarding: See below.
Training: I vaguely remember someone showing me something.
Pay rate: $52,000/year.
It’s difficult to describe this company in a way that translates. One of my coworkers there affectionately referred to it as the “Island of Misfit Toys.” She wasn’t wrong. In my capacity there, I worked as the sole marketing person, doing everything from writing copy to managing the website to sitting in meeting with prospective speakers. That last part was mildly entertaining — and let me tell you, Joan Rivers did deliver a delicious holiday present.
My first day on the job, my boss instructed me to call up their newest speaker, the one I wrote a spec piece for and collect his edits. That man was Eliot Spitzer. His only change was the addition of an unnecessary comma. Mostly, I felt pretty good about my work at the agency. I excelled at what I did, and I liked the majority of my co-workers, except one. This nemesis became a contributing reason for my ultimate departure, though in that moment, things were swell. My commute was the M train door to door. I got to wander around near the UN on a daily basis. There were company dinners at Mr. Chow. Invitations to parties at Naomi Wolf’s apartment. Free tickets to events at the 92nd Street Y.
And yet, try as I might, I just wasn’t a city kid. Nor was I a kid at this point, turning 28 that year at a mediocre Mexican restaurant in Greenpoint surrounded by a group of girls I don’t even keep in touch with anymore. I was tired of experimenting and tired of trying to make a go at something that just didn’t fit. So I did what I had so many times before and resigned, right after I helped hire and train my replacement.
Next up: the job I’ve worked for almost seven (that’s right) years.
Image via WSJ.