Me and 9,999 others at the job fair today

GrafwritahGrafwritah 4,184 Posts
edited May 2009 in Strut Central
I'm posting this for my job seeking bretheren... this was my fun for the day.They had estimated 10,000 but I think the early morning shitty weather kept it down; it ended at 4 w/7,500 people in attendance.A local TV station has been running ads for "Ohio's Biggest Job Fair". Originally it was supposed to be at a local college but they had such a response to pre-registration they had to move it to the convention center.Familiar with job fairs I wasn't optimistic but there were a few decent companies there and I figured it couldn't hurt.I got there about a half hour early. It was raining; people had a hard time figuring how to get to the entrance through all the people.Turns out all the people were waiting in a really, really long line that snaked through the outside courtyard, around a concrete barrier, onto the sidewalk and down the block.The line moved fairly quickly though, but I still stood in line outside getting rained on for a half an hour before I could get in the door. There was an interesting mix of people; it varied from people who look like they just woke up (note to jobseekers: dressing decently business-casual doesn't really work when you top it off with big hoop earrings that say SEXY in the middle, or chains with your name on them - derrrr) to people in varied states of business casual to business and topped off with older guys that looked like laid off execs in nice suits.I chatted it up with the guys around me; guy in front (black guy in JNCO jeans... last I saw JNCO jeans that didn't happen) was nice... joked around about if we were real entrepreneurs we would be selling umbrellas to the wet crowd. Guy behind me - missing a few teeth - jumped in and we chatted. Turns out they both were unemployed security guards looking for "ANYthing!"Our chat was interrupted by a fat guy trying to find the end of the line> Dude was like, "Maaaaaaayyyne this is like the guvment CHEESE line like back in tha DAY! Maayynnne get yo big ol' block o' guvment CHEESE, baby!" It was good humor.We all got wet, even those that had umbrellas. I joke with them that after sitting outside so long waiting to get in, once we get in the doors it'll be another long line snaking to the roof and back down again. We all laugh.So we get in the door, and it's another long line. It doesn't go to the roof, but it snakes around the upper level, down the stairs, and around the lower level. Ha.Guy a few people ahead of me tells some ladies he's an engineer. I hope he wasn't looking for that kind of job there.Finally we get into the spot... there are employers, but many are not what you would classify as "jobs"-type employers. Avon, Mary Kay, several different military recruiters, Tupperware (I joked to some college kids I was really excited to peep the Tupperware booth; their response, "What's Tupperware?"), about five different "sell insurance to all your relatives and then we shit on you until you quit" type places. Let down was about four different colleges/universities - signing people up for classes, not jobs. Some eh jobs were Arby's and a collection company masquerading as if they were in banking. Solid but low income included package handler openings for UPS and FedEx. Big letdowns were what I considered normal/good employers. RadioOne - I know radio is in bad shape, but usually they have sales rep positions or techs or something. You wait wait wait ... only to find out they're hiring INTERNS.A couple regional banks... wait wait wait... "We're only hiring for collections at a call center. Interested?" "No." "Fair enough. Here have a card."Nobody (at a "real" company) gave me their real, personal card. They handed junk cards with the company's job listings.Speaking of, that's all a lot of them did. They printed out what was listed on search engines and plopped them on the table.Another bank was only hiring p/t tellers. When I asked for his card anyway, the guys says to me, "What you want my card for?" and then gives me a generic junk web address card.I enjoyed talking to the people I ran into there but for jobs it was very disappointing, and I think most people came away with little to show for it. I mean, yeah, it was free, but for all the hype about helping people get jobs there was little there."Business Casual""Business Older Guys"No biggie though; bonus was chatty grandpa (a dorkier Morgan Freeman-esque older guy) working the parking garage I parked at; we chatted all about the economy and business and economic policy. Then he asks why we're in the jam we're in and I said I thought a lot of it had to do with repealing some of the banking industry restrictions back in the 90s. And then nice grandpa breaks out with, "So big business FUCKED themselves! ... Sorry! ... Ok they FUCKED themselves!" I laughed.It was sunny by the time I left. I enjoyed the outing anyway.Pics aren't mine... from local tv station.


  • DeegreezDeegreez 804 Posts
    I read this and I really felt like crying. I find it very heartbreaking to see so many people willing to work and unable to do so.

  • GrafwritahGrafwritah 4,184 Posts
    I read this and I really felt like crying. I find it very heartbreaking to see so many people willing to work and unable to do so.

    I do sympathize with some people. Like the ex-security guard guys I talked to... they were serious when they said they would take anything. It made me feel kind of uppity :

    I think it really hits home when you go to shit like that and see people that you normally don't think of when you think of unemployment; older guys in business suits, groups of young Indian (guessing) guys in nice suits who look like they should be off doing something big; even clean cut younger guys.

    Although there were some douchy looking people, most were not. There were very few folks I would imagine when I think of unemployment, like unshaven need-to-bathe types (I know, such a stereotype!).

  • KineticKinetic 3,738 Posts
    Damn man... thousands of people lining up in the rain to go toa jobs fasir with no jobs is kinda disheartening.

  • GrafwritahGrafwritah 4,184 Posts
    Damn man... thousands of people lining up in the rain to go toa jobs fasir with no jobs is kinda disheartening.

    There were some that I would classify as "jobs". I know the Department of Youth Services (youth prisons) was there - didn't peep them.

    Cleveland Police ... i dunno how much they hire but they were there. Gotta pay to take the civil service test tho.

    T-Mobile had some cell phone sales jobs which are reasonable if not overly exciting.

    But yeah I think if you were in any way looking for things that come near real job level (i.e. with decent benefits) pickings were slim and jobs that req'd anything beyond HS diploma were close to non-existant there.

    I just think there were 7500 people looking at a more realistic "real job" number of maybe 200. The rest were not "job" jobs.
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