Saturday, March 28, 2009

Me at the WTC?

Edit: No, WTC in this instance is not the World Trade Center. In the Triathlon community, it stands for World Triathlon Corporation.

Wouldn't that be interesting! Roman posted about the opening, and good ol' Spokane Al sent me an e-mail (luckily, since I hadn't seen Roman's post yet) with the link in it. Not having a degree in Journalism or any PR experience, it was difficult to fathom having the qualifications necessary for the position.

But I'm an all-round good guy with some time on my hands, and it got me to thinking...I've got plenty of journalism experience. There are people out there who like what I write, right? Of course, I imagine that writing in "blog" style would be different from writing for a magazine or a company PR program, but as far as the content, perhaps not so much.

So I applied -

Interestingly, I applied just a few minutes ago thinking how great it would be to work in the world of fitness, but that I don't have a degree in Journalism nor have I worked in public relations for the specified times set out in the job requirements. Then I remembered – my blog of nearly 3 years, where I’ve wrote consistently about our great sport of triathlon, and of life in general. I also nearly forgot about the podcast I’ve co-chaired for just over a year, The Tacboy and Bigun Podcast ( ), in which we also cover topics in the world of fitness and triathlon, albeit with a bit of tongue and cheek. So while my “work” resume hasn’t changed, perhaps my years of relating to the public – my “creepy internet friends” – would act as either an internship or on the job training in the world of journalism and multi-media entertainment.

One of my most read blog postings was a review of the Zipps I rode at IMCdA:

and my second submission is a bit of comedy about flip turns:

Thanks again for considering me for this position. I know I can be an asset to your organization!

Yes, as is customary with the M-dot Bigun, I acted before really thinking, and sent out my resume without so much as a cover letter or the required 2 pieces of material. Duh. It's difficult to go back into your own blog and pick something that you think is good and that others think might be good too. From the other world. The "real" world. We all read each other's crap all the time, and aside from boring dribble that occasionally passes by our fingertips, we find interest because we are FRIENDS with the person writing. It's all "I" and "me" and a lot of "we" - where I doubt that's accepted much in official journalistic prose.

They also asked about salary requirements. How much do you think a PR Coordinator makes these days? After all, I can't pay my car note with free IM entries....although it would be fun to try!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Race is ON

Yep, IMUT10 is the place to be in 2010 - and I would like nothing more than to hop in that lake with 2000 of my best new and creepy Internet friends for IM #2.

So the race is on. Bigun gets a career job before the race sells out, and I'm IN. That's the deal. That's me being responsible.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Human Resources can kiss me right in the middle

What is this country coming to?

"I liked him in the interview, but his psych profile test that he did, well, he really scored low and we just didn't think he'd be a good fit...".

Crimeny! Hows that for a blow to the self esteem? A friggen on-line HR 350 question test that I somehow scored badly on, according to their criteria. But I aced the interview. You gotta be kidding me.

That was the Las Vegas deal. Seems like a big 'oh well' for that one. Now we still have the New Orleans thing going on. I think I did really well in that interview, but I also had to take a quick on-line personality test for that job. I'm scared to even think about it.... It hires by April 6th, so I've got time to agonize over this one too.

Personality tests. Crap! Am I doomed to flip burgers for the rest of my life? I pretty much suck on the grill - as anyone who's been over to the Bigun's for a cookout can attest to. Bad, Bad, very Bad. The only thing left is the guy who holds the stop sign at construction sites. I hope they don't require a personality test for one of those. How I got into West Point and somehow made it into Special Forces... I'll never know.

Friday, March 13, 2009

If you're scared...

(warning, this post has very little to do with Triathlon. I mention the word once, but that's it - oh, and I say, "Ironman" too...)

say you're scared. I'm scared. Not about the economy. I know that's tit's up. Foregone conclusion. I'm scared 'cause I know what I want to do, and it seems reckless. Even for the M-dot Bigun.

I want to go West. The Mountains. The Rock. The weather. Things in my own country I've never seen before. The Grand Canyon. Yosemite. Salt Lake. Deserts and high mountains. Low humidity. Ghost towns. Stuff like that.

Weirdly, at 45 (in a few days) I'm at a reset point in my life. I can go anywhere and do anything without any more (read MORE) negative effect on my career or financial standing. A big giant ditto for my wife's situation. Together, we have little to lose no matter where we go. It's sad and exciting at the same time.

At 45 you'd hope to be in cruise mode. You'd hope to be on the career path with the train having left the station, all the cars lined up in a row. Safe. Not so much. What's even worse is that in a highly specialized world (if you don't believe that it is, just try to look for a job these days) I'm a very un-specialized guy.

It's a bad habit formed from my military days. Every two years or so, sometimes less, in the Army you change jobs. I'm not talking a quick change from, say being the guy making the widgets to being the guy supervising the guy making the widgets. An Army infantry officer could one day be leading a platoon of dudes specialized at firing mortars to the next day being the head Human Resources (S1) honcho of the "Corporation". The next year you could be the maintenance HMFIC (BMO) and then spend a year managing logistics (S4). Just enough time to get good at the job they throw at you, but not long enough to become an expert.

That was cool, back then. I never got sick of a job. Since leaving the Army, my resume is splattered with varying jobs and duty descriptions. My sales career of 7 years is the longest I've ever done anything on a consistent basis - oddly, it's the least favorite job I've ever had. What a dumb ass!

I've been asked, "what do I want to do"? I struggle with that daily. The best job I ever had I gave up 12 years ago, and nothing since has come close to it's coolness. To say, "I miss the Army" is an understatement. But that's all water under the bridge.

I've tried to supplement my lack of satisfaction in my work life with challenges in my free time. Triathlon. Ironman. These things were (are) awesome and were great achievements but unfortunately do not put bread on the table. The fiddler is on the doorstep, and he's got his hand OUT! And you know what, it's not about becoming rich for me. I'm not looking for the crazy huge house or expensive cars or whatnot. I think it boils down to three things: Be challenged, make a difference, and do it honorably with honorable people around me. With that, pay me fairly for what I do.

If I keep looking, something like that will come up. I'm pretty sure of it. Just not here in Tampa. Lets face it, I don't fish. I don't lie on the beach. I don't sunbathe. I'm not a boater. I hate lawn work. Exactly - what in the heck am I doing here? Uggg. As spontaneous and as carefree as Di and I seem to be, I'm still one to have a plan. At least a fall back plan. In the past, I've been places that I was able to stay with family while we regrouped. In the past, Di's expertise was highly sought after - now, it's not. I think that Di's efforts at her career and passion for what she did made just doing the "sales thing" tolerable for me. True, there are lot's of "I's" up there, but it is not all about me. I have a feeling that Di does like it here, and that adds a dimension of suckitude to the moving equation.

Perhaps I'm over thinking all this. "Just do it", right? Can I get a big, "quit 'cher bitchin' Bigun and do something" from the crowd? Gosh, when did I become such a puss?