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Sunday, 17 January 2010

I have said many times that everything in life, happens for a reason. Yesterday someone in this house broke the computer. On questioning, it was apparently nobody and yet it was defiantly and somewhat mysteriously stuffed. So I fix it. A rare and unexpected opportunity to sit down, I allow myself a few moments of web trawling. Checking through the history, I accidentally load Gumtree and stumble across a role that has my name all over it. Another moment of Karma.

The local comedy and arts venue are looking for an unpaid marketing assistant. Not just any venue but one that originates in Brighton, town of living people. Those that dip into this blog may recall my last visit there. I wept all the way home. The people of Brighton had a pulse. I, with my numerous children and range cooker, had returned to the country to await certain death.

Rigor Mortise no more. Modernity, humour and cosmopolitan night life has arrived in the West Country. It all slots into place. My marriage implodes, I get down to a size 6, a social life and my humour back. Bath not only gets a proper comedy and arts venue, but a Kurt Geiger shop. Life is looking up.

Granted, I have a career versus experience crisis, am facing possible re homing in a Rotastack, a heady experience with the serial dater and financial ruin. Yet, in the children's refusal to stay away from the computer, I may have stumbled across the answer.

So its unpaid. This is a good thing. Paid and I would have to lie to an uncomfortable level. The kind of spin required on my CV could constitute grounds for legal action. Unpaid, I can be a little more realistic. I know I can do it but lets face it, I have had a career break that should see me on the New Years Honours list for dedicated population expansion. Knowing I can do it and persuading someone that I am the ideal candidate, is another proposition. The fact that its a fixed term is the perfect solution. Ample chance to regain my experience and prove my worth and ample opportunity for them to wave a fond farewell at the end. Which they won't.

So I embark on a little research. Like any new relationship, I google the name of the person placing the ad. It bodes badly. According to google, she is a hard core porn star. I think the error was adding Bath to the search. A similar issue arouse a few years ago when looking for a shower. For a moment I wondered if this was the kind of marketing I wanted to get into and whether the advert was a double bluff. It seems not. I take Bath out and the search becomes more appropriate.

Reading through the skills required, I assess my own strengths. There is one major issue, interviews start from today and I have a curriculum vitae that could only be padded out by including birthing notes. I read the description and trawl through the specification, wondering how I can rewrite the gaps in appropriate work related format.

A genuine interest in live performance and the arts.
I have an active a keen supporter of live performance and the arts. I have attended a wide variety of events on a regular basis

Okay, so this could be tricky. Is an interest simply that, or does it have to be a recent and proven history of actually paying. Will the submission of ticket stumps be prerequisite and if so, can I tippex over the date? I could happily bleat on about Cirque de soleil or Stomp in the hope that they fail to ask in which decade I went. I have been to the theatre twice in the last 3 months but it Beauty and the Beast is hardly cutting edge. I once spent far too much of my time at Jongleurs and the Comedy Store and nearly wet myself on several occasions. I saw Lee Evans in the days when people said "Lee who"?
I once orchestrated a cake delivery by helicopter and was instrumental in a large group of the serving forces reenacting a fly past on bicycles. It was definitely an art form.

Excellent written and spoken English
I am articulate and well spoken. I have worked as a freelance journalist on many well known titles.

My ability to articulate has seen grown men whimpering at my feet. If there are chinks in my armour, they are not in verbal tenacity. I may occasionally struggle to remember a word but when others were reading Noddy at bedtime, I read a thesaurus. Possible a little quirky but quirky and articulate I do well.

I should also fare well with the written word. I have on occasion, rambled for titles such as The Times and The Telegraph. I have written about cars, breasts, sperm and murder. I have written computer manuals, press releases and my party invitations are second to none. I am not sure the topics are entirely relevant but hey, writing is writing. I was once predestined to be a top copy writer with a rubber floored Dockland kitchen, and first name reference in Campaign magazine. Fertility put paid to that, but I can still write copy.

A flexible and proactive approach to work.
I am a diligent and flexible worker. I am both proactive and conscientious and happy to offer assistance wherever needed.

Today I tended to the ill of Wiltshire in my work as sympathetic, efficient Call Handler. If you got top notch service, had your call answered efficiently, with compassion and received a quality of care exceeding your expectation, you spoke to me.

When I got home, I plastered a wall, restored and painted a cupboard, made a banana cake, wrote a press release on Triple Action Bypass Loppers, eradicated the lives of 17 headlice, built a space station, made dinner, counseled a mentally unstable friend, walked the evil dog and broke up an argument between waring siblings. I call that flexible and proactive.

A helpful and positive disposition
I am a very positive person and am always willing to lend a hand where needed.

Frankly, after the last couple of years, if I hadn't been positive I would have had to resort to large amounts of Valium or Vodka. I have had more to contend with than most people face in a lifetime. I look better and feel better than I have in years. My life is back on track and I am taking control for the first time in years. My shoe collection and acerbic wit have helped.

I help in school, I write peoples copy, I apparently run a free drop in centre for local teenagers, I apparently lend children expensive and prohibited electrical equipment and I help the nations young with menial tasks on a daily basis. My services are offered freely and with abandon.

Ability to work under pressure and to tight deadlines & time management skills
I work well in busy and demanding environments and can achieve a high volume of work, within time and on target.

I have 4 children. I am constantly under pressure. Everything in my life is a deadline. The children get to school, they get fed, my eyebrows are still plucked and if I say I am going to be in the pub at 8pm, I will be there and looking like a goddess. I have no idea how I achieve it all. I suspect high levels of adrenalin coursing through my veins. My ability to complete tasks scares people. Sometimes it scares me and I wonder if I am in fact normal. I know that others wonder this too.

Office and computer skills, Photoshop desirable but not essential.
I am computer literate and experienced in an office office background. I have used many computer systems and am able to pick up new skills quickly.

I work in the NHS. The system changes daily and nobody tells you. This is on the job training in the extreme. About a month after you have discovered you can link one set of notes to another, there will be an email telling you that you can link one set of notes to another. I have absolutely no idea how computers work, have never got my head around fax machines but I spend far too much of my life on computers. If you need anyone to guaranteed to win an item on eBay or find a cheats way of executing the impossible, 'tis me.

Granted, I have never used Photoshop but in the days of stone tablets, I qualified as a Graphic Designer. Whilst fellow students chiseled stone, I animated a ball running the gauntle of a Helter Skelter. It may seem nothing now, but back then it was impressive. For a moment, I was a computer goddess and my ball was in Computer Animator magazine. Who knows, I could be a Photoshop demon.

Research skills
I am skilled at researching and collating information relevant to the task at hand.

I am the cyber sleuth. I can find out almost anything I need to know. My ability to unearth undisclosed information is well documented (infidelity and divorce). I have outwitted paediatricians, educational psychologists and pathologists. If you want the cheapest walnut flooring in the country, the latest Reiss dress at knockdown price or the computer keys last seen in the dogs jaw, I am the woman. If you think you can hide something, be scared.

Have a passion for marketing and ideally background knowledge or previous experience in the field of marketing and or communications.
Prior to having children, I had experience of working both in marketing and public relations and a good understanding of both. I am a qualified Graphic Designer and a skilled Copywriter. I have experience of writing for print.

I worked for a London marketing company for a few months. Granted, it wasn't long but those big signs that used to hang over your head in Somerfields, I did those. The marketing campaign for a well known antihistamine, I did that (though so long ago I can barely recall). I was offered a job for a top London agency as a copywriter. Alas the recession hit and my job went with it.

I worked in a PR company for nothing simply because I wanted the experience. Short of cash and a house with barely a roof, I took a job as a sales coordinator for a national waste disposal company. I spent a large proportion of my time drawing pie charts on the market share of rear end loaders in UK industrial sites.

I am a demon shopper and a source of all that is interior. I have a quite staggering and disturbing ability to retain information on price, availability and design. Mainly at the user end, I have extensive experience of which marketing tactics work and which fail.

As one of the few people I know not running my own company, I have a long history of telling people where and how they should market their company. I am hoping the will all give me shares or leave me fortunes in their wills. So far all it had gained is a free dog lead, a few dinners and a lot of friends with exceedingly small marketing budgets.

Degree Students (or graduates) on placements welcome
I am a graduate and would like the opportunity of applying for the Marketing Assistant Intern role

Technically speaking I could be a graduate applying for this role. It does not stipulate how long ago you should have graduated. If they are going to be welcoming to such an application, perhaps I could apply under this guise and hope they fail to notice that it was 20 years ago. Alternatively, I could simply point out that those mid life bound have more determination, flexibility, transferable skill, staying power and less pride. I can also make better tea.

Yet there is a small sticking point. Interviews are from the 18th January. Today is the 17th and it is nearly midnight. I have no Curriculum Vitae. There is no deadline, but it would be reasonable to expect it was prior to interview.

A pragmatic approach is called for. If I have no Curriculum Vitae, I cannot send one. I have the skills for the job, I want the experience and life dictates that the timing is perfect.

I just need to tell them that.

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