Monday, June 13, 2005

Interview #2

Day of the big second interview. Very nervous. It was with one of my idols. I think this chef/owner is as good as they come in our business. And to interview with him was a milestone in my short career. I sat with the General Manager (to my loyal readers they’ll remember him as the AC/DC fan) as we waited for the chef. I’m wearing the same suit and tie from the first interview, although I changed the shirt. I’m sweating. The chef bursts into the room with a ton of energy and urgency. He looks like a grad student on the verge of becoming a professor, with his preppy glasses and disheveled look. The interview covers all the bases: why I want this position, where I previously worked, what I’ve learned. The chef talked in that distracted way that geniuses talk with the rare eye contact and fidgety mannerisms.
“You’re green.”
I nod. It’s true. I am.
“You’re wholly under qualified for this position.”
Again I nod. I could have contested this with witty banter, but I think it’s absurd to not concede your weakness. And then it happened.
“But…I like you. And what you lack in experience doesn’t matter to me because I sense you’re hungry.”
I’m bowled over. Stunned.
“Can you make it upstate to [our sister restaurant] for dinner on Sunday?”
“Yes.”
“Dinner of course would be on us. Bring someone along with you if you'd feel more comfortable.”
And that’s how we left it. On my way out I talked to the current Wine Director, who I’ve become friendly with. She told me about the work environment and about the job more in detail. Then she told me the total hours: 70-80. Whoa.
I go back to work and set up. It’s not a busy night so I get cut off the floor and decide to have dinner at the restaurant I interviewed at. I had a good meal and service exceeded my expectations; all of which brightened when I consider that I didn’t have to pay for the meal (just tip)--the Wine Director comped the entire thing.
Part of me was hoping that the interview wouldn’t go very well and they wouldn’t offer me the job. (They haven’t, just for clarification.) But I can tell that we’re on the road to that happening. Damn my boyish good looks and charming demeanor!

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