Sunday, January 25, 2009

The job fair experiment

So in only six days I will be standing in lines for interviews at a teacher job fair at the community college in DuPage. It will be my fourth time at the job fair and the previous three have been pretty bleak. Basically, it's one of the largest job fairs in the nation and most of the best paying schools in the state are there interviewing candidates for jobs they may not even have available. The lines are packed with candidates who are foolishly expecting to have a snowball's chance in hell of getting a second interview and an even worse chance of getting a job from the fair. They wait an hour for five minutes or less of talk time with a representative from that line's particular school district who won't remember them and only want the day to be done. The same can be said of the applicants.


The three times I've been there have been really depressing. No one is happy. The hour you wait in lines is passed only by boring chit-chat with other anxious job seekers. They share stories about other lines, how long they've waited, what school district supposedly has shorter lines and job openings, where they currently work/go to school... It's so goddamn boring. The only highlight is when you see some chick in a hot pant suit. UNTIL THIS YEAR. After this year's job fair, there will be hundreds of job seekers talking to each other and everyone they know about the guy in the chicken suit. I'm sure they'll be asking each other things like:

Why the hell would you wear a chicken suit to a job fair?

What statement is this man/woman trying to make?

Does he/she have any better chance of getting a job than me?

Why didn't I think of that?


But I think mostly, they're all just going to be so thankful to have something to entertain them for the worst six hours of their lives. There's no food. Nowhere to sit down. No hope. But at least there's a man in a chicken suit. With a camera. And resumes. You go, Chicken Suit Man. Thank you for liberating me.



If you have suggestions for how I should behave or things I should do to make the most of this situation, I'm all ears. A number of you also expressed an interest in helping fund this ordeal since I had previously expressed reservations about the expenses of doing this, because I'm cheap. The total cost will be $85. The chicken costume will be 65 to rent for a day and getting into the job fair is 20. If you want to donate to this cause, reply to this post so I can figure out the cost per person. I obviously will be putting my own money up to do this and will just hope some of you can pay me your share if you so desire. I suppose I'm not holding anyone ransom here, but I think we'll all share in the joy of the Chicken Suit Man stories and photos for a long time.

13 comments:

Michael said...

I'll pitch in, definitely. If I provide a video camera can you take movies too?

jp said...

I'm in, too. But I want to make this bigger. I'd like to invite some colleagues from work, and possibly tap into the improv everywhere Chicago chapter. Thoughts?

Thom said...

I'll contribute some funds once I have some funds (ahem, job). Also, I live near the college; perhaps I can be of assistance? In addition, Improv Everywhere would be great, but I think this is a one-man job, and that one man can only be Mr. Waple.

Waple said...

The Improv Everywhere idea would be interesting, but I have no connections or idea about how to do that. Also, I think it might be more expensive than they would like to commit. Costumes are easy, but 20 bucks to get in can't be avoided.

As for the video camera, I think I'd have difficult carrying that around all day.

Thom, I don't know what kind of assistance you could offer but if you wanted to hang out after I leave the fair around 3 it'd be fun. I don't even care what we do. I'll be in a chicken suit so anything will be enjoyable.

Thom said...

Let's go to either KFC or Popeye's afterwards. The irony would be staggering.

Waple said...

Loves it.

I also don't think I've ever eaten at a KFC or Popeye's. I've had KFC, but only once. That sounds great.

Michael said...

They'd probably think we were activists or something.

Walk in and be like "I am El Pollo Diablo. You devoured my people, now I have come for you!"

... then order a 12 piece bucket of wings.

Danger said...

I wanna attend the Totally Hung Fair, which is in your pants, ALL THE TIME

laurensummer said...

you've got my support, andrew!

i'll i ask is that the chicken is kosher and free range.

(quick, somebody cue the "chicken dance")

Michael said...

I'm not entirely sure Andrew is either Kosher or free range... at least, not yet.

I'll go contact my local Jewish butcher and get him to bring his tools. Andrew, go sit in this bathtub full of salt water...

Waple said...

Don't any of you try to get near me with tools.

Update: I got the chicken suit today, and I have it until Tuesday. Awesome. I want to wear it everywhere. It is like a big, furry, yellow jumpsuit, except it only goes down to mid-thigh and the rest is yellow tights with orange feet and a big, scary chicken head.

Brad said...

Are you going to tell us all what happened? Did you get the job?

Waple said...

Haha, well, it wasn't THE job. It was lots of interviews for lots of places, some of which may not even have openings. But yes, I will tell you all soon. I have a few photos to load up and mostly just a lot of typing to do. Long story short - I had great interviews and I'm going to be in the Chicago Tribune. I'll give all the details hopefully soon. Grading is starting to pile up. I think you'll all enjoy the story when I get to it.