Friday, September 18, 2009

Brain ache, thumping hearts and Clip Art ...

I've spent this whole week in a classroom. Strange territory. Long time no see.

In order to appear supremely employable in a Canadian marketplace, I thought it wise to upgrade my Microsoft skills (she says, updating her blog from her Mac).

I profess to having a basic working knowledge of most of the packages and can muddle my way around most documents and formats but I did not have a little certificate to prove this - and this piece of paper is crucial - vitally important to be taken as a professional. One needs a certificate for everything nowadays - I believe you need a masters degree to pull pints and the cleaning lady at the Town Hall is fluent in four languages - but she hasn't got Microsoft Word under her belt you see. Well, now I do. Certificates galore - Yay me!

I spent two days navigating Vista (yawn), a day re-learning Word, yesterday was Excel and today was Powerpoint. I return next week for two more days on Excel (glutton for punishment - but at least I now know one end of a spreadsheet from the other - but both ends are pretty boring to be honest with you) and I categorically know that I do not wish to work with accountants or anyone else with any excuse for needing large spreadsheets - yuck. Little and occasional use is acceptable to me, thank you.

The classes were graded as "fast paced" and they weren't kidding. But I managed to keep up till about 3.15pm and then my brain said "Sorry, we're closed for the rest of the day, please try again tomorrow". I found the Powerpoint enormous fun and it appeals to my (well hidden) artistic side, with all that ability to play with colour and shapes and presentation. Ooh, you can go mad. I think I'd enjoy drawing gardens or homes with design technologies. Now that would be a job for me. So I can see why people love to make powerpoint presentations, and why every other bugger hates to sit and watch them.

We've all sat through the "Death by Powerpoint" training days, trying desperately not to fall off the chair when we do that sudden jerky movement 'cos we momentarily fell asleep. Huh! we grunt, and then smooth our hand over our face and hair trying to sneak a look sideways to check out if anyone noticed. C'mon, you know you've done that too. It's the same when you fall asleep during a really boring film at the cinema and spill your precariously balanced popcorn.

I recall reading comments about Powerpoint presentations, and one stuck in my mind.

"If I see one more presentation with that Clip Art of the man holding a light bulb, I think I'll scream".

Well, I sniggered like a naughty child today when I found said piece of Clip Art, and therefore instantly inserted the picture into my pretend slide show - and then enlarged him for good measure (wouldn't that be a cool option in the real world too?).

I can see how he would be annoying though - smug, puffed-up bastard, with his Gucci briefcase and his toned pecs. You'd want to smash him over the head with that bulb, wouldn't you?

The irony now is that a couple of days after booking this course and parting with some hard cash that I can ill afford ('cos I'm not gainfully employed 'cos I haven't got the certificates - are you following this?) is that I was invited for an interview today. Yes, for a real-life job. Cool. Actually I was more chuffed that someone had actually read my resume.

So I sloped off from PowerPoint an hour early this afternoon for the interview - and I think it went pretty well - but you never really know do you? I obviously have no idea of the quantity or quality of my competition, and I forgot to ask how long it would be before they let me know. D'oh. So I now sit on my sharpened tenterhooks for the foreseeable future until Mr HR Fellow calls me back to invite me to join their happy gathering, or writes to me politely to let me down gently - I figure he's unlikely to telephone me to say I was unsuccessful ...

Cross your fingers, toes and eyes for me this weekend, and here's hoping Mr HR Fellow contacts me soon.


  1. All duly crossed for you!

    Flossie and Jim

  2. ' smug, puffed-up bastard, with his Gucci briefcase and his toned pecs.'..... lol...if you don't get the job?.....their loss.
    Everything crossed for you!

  3. Ahh, thanks guys. Their loss indeed Neil!!

    Steady with all that crossing though - don't want to be responsible for cramp!


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