Well, I am almost sixteen. It's the summer before my junior year. And you know what that means: no longer do adults care what my summer plans are. Everyone wants to know--am I getting a job?
The answer, my friends, is...erjdfkgjsdj. Let me break that down for you. I want a job. But I am slightly picky, and also at a bit of a disadvantage. First off, I'd rather work for a local company, rather than a chain. A few months ago, I emailed my top choice--a local frozen yogurt joint--to inquire as to whether they required any summer help. Unfortunately, they did not--although they said they might check back with me during the summer if anything changed. They have yet to contact me.
Then I dove into the deep end of job applications...and realized how grossly under qualified I am. Previous work experience? None. Age? Too young. References? Refre-whats? Here I was, swimming in confusion, and all around me other teens were swooping up jobs left and right. I can't go into the mall anymore without seeing at least three kids from my school working behind some counter. I'm inclined to think they're all there because of nepotism. I know it's not true, but it makes me feel better to think it might be, because how else could they possibly be getting those greenbacks when I'm jobless? Leave me alone, okay?
In all honestly, I have yet to actually apply to any jobs. But that's not to say I haven't made progress. Last week, I went to a job fair for my local grocery store. I pictured rows of tables advertising different available jobs, which I could flit between as I surveyed my options. Instead, I was lead to a grim waiting room filled with people at least twice my age, given an application, and told to fill it out, at which point I would go in for an interview. Basically, a sped up application process. Unfortunately, I was completely unprepared to fill out the application. When I got to the references section, I gave up and left. It was...disheartening, to say the least.
Today, my friend, Maria, who is also looking for a job, and I went downtown to the mall. We entered almost every single store and asked if they were hiring teenagers. And literally every store had a minimum age of sixteen. Imagine being two months from sixteen and hearing, over and over again, that you are too young to work. The end-of-summer birthday struggle is real, people, and it plagues thousands of frustrated teens each year.
There was one singular store that showed promise: a toy store, where the lady at the register informed us that there was no application, but that we could write down our phone and email and the managers would contact us. "We usually hire at sixteen, maybe fifteen." Fifteen! She threw my age in there! I scrawled down those digits on a Post-It and eagerly handed it over. Out of at least twenty stores, I had found one potential job opening. Oh miracle of miracles.
The worst part? We walked by the frozen yogurt stand I yearn to work at, and sitting behind the cash register was a girl from my school...who is two months younger than me.
Sneaky, terrible universe. Why must you always betray me?