Friday, March 14, 2008
Friday's Story: Profiles in Occupational Hotness
Before I began my lucrative career in the secretarial arts, I had a different brush with occupational hotness. Librarian? No. Nurse? Not even close. Instead, I applied for Arjewtino’s favorite sexy career: Flight Attendant.
I had just finished college, and was looking for a job. In 1998, job hunting involved actual newspapers, circling relevant want ads with a red pen, and mailing off resumes. With stamps! That you licked! We also churned our own butter and wore bonnets.
So, one day, I was circling ads by the pool when I came across an open call for flight attendants. Hey, who is better qualified than me? I have a degree in journalism from a top-flight state university, for heaven’s sake. I can pass out pillows and cans of Coke, and see the world at the same time. Plus, I could fly for free and meet lots of cute pilots.
Harsh Reality #1: If you want to see the world, don’t apply to work for a prop-plane regional airline.
So I went to the open call. It was very similar to the Disney intern open call I had gone to several years before. Namely, very happy people make very depressing jobs seem like the funnest thing ever.
For the record, prop-plane flight attendants only get paid when the cabin doors are closed. And they have to gather trash and clean the plane after every flight. So, much like my housewife era, I would not be paid to pick up after others. And the money is so hilariously bad it makes my current wages look like a king’s ransom.
And you have to live at the airline’s hub. Well, you sort of live there, but really, you don’t. Because you’re so broke you do things like fly standby for the free peanuts.
Harsh Reality #2: Let's move to glamorous Newark!
And I almost forgot about the uniforms. Which you had to pay for yourself. They were made of a fascinating sandpaper/polyester hybrid fabric. The things even smelled flammable. If the plane went down, everyone would die. That's because there would be no flight attendants left to remind people about their seat cushion flotation devices. The attendants and their poly-blend getups would have all combusted at the first spark.
Nonetheless, I wanted to be sexy stewardess. So I stayed for the spiel, I stayed for the group interview, I got a callback for an individual interview. All told, I was there for three hours. Only then did they tell me that I’m too short to reach the overhead compartments.
Harsh Reality #3: I’ll never be tall enough to be truly hot.
That’s when I said, “Oh well, secretaries can be sexy, too! I’ll just take that job at the hotel.”
And that's how I became the woman I am today. Inspiring, no?