As I was commuting home after an interview with a potential client, I got stuck in traffic and started pondering interviews in general. I thought about how silly and pro forma many standard interview questions are. Then I thought of one in particular, which I’ve never actually been asked: If you could be any animal, what would you be?
I went through a possible answer to the question and the likely follow ups I’d get asked. Then I went through a few more. Then I realized that if someone asked such a lame question, I wouldn’t want to work for them. So I thought of some possible answers to blow the interview off:
[li]I think I’d like to be a tapeworm. Warmth, security, and a 24x7 all-you-can-eat buffet.[/li][li]An elephant. I’ve always wanted a 12’ schlong.[/li][li]A hamster. I’ve often wondered what my children would taste like.[/li][/ol]
Then I started laughing at myself. This usually means it’s something that only I’ll find funny. Just the thing for MPSIMS. So, anyone who’s made it this far: How would you answer the question if you wanted the interview to end the moment you finished your answer?
Just the thing for the next HR party …
A dog, because I’d like to hump your leg.
The CEO’s lapdog, because that’s what I was at my last job.
A turtle, because I want to work from home.
A cat, because they have 9 lives. Say, your life insurance will pay out 9 times, right?
A three-toed sloth, because that would mean two of my toes grew back.
An ostrich, so I could stick my head in the sand and not listen to anybody.
A rabbit, so I could breed furiously.
A dingo, so I could eat your baby.
A cat…I like sleeping twelve hours a day and having other people serve me.
An intestinal parisite - I’ll have to be up your ass to get anywhere ANYWAY…might as well be suited to the environment.
A bonobo…you know, they have sex ALL THE TIME, and they don’t really care who the partner is?
Whadda good question!
“Well, sir, that would be the Octopus. I’d have all those arms for multi-tasking, sure would get a lot alot of work done! Plus, if anyone pissed me off, I’d simply flash color patterns on my skin to let them know my mental state, and if it got too bad, I’d squirt a huge cloud of ink at them and squish my fluid body into the nearest cranny in my cubicle until it blew over. Oh, and they have muy cool eyes, suction cups on their arms and a beak mouth that can tear the shit out of… What’s that? OK then, I’ll be waiting for your call…”
A sheep, because I would LOVE to have sex with a sheep, but they keep running away from me!
Er, I don’t understand. I am an animal. Well, that is, as opposed to being a plant… or a vegetable. …Well, sure, I have a soul, too… I guess. [Extend this for several more minutes of rambling.] Er, could you repeat the question?
An HR Director. Because then I’d have artificial power unmatched by any animal.
A T. Rex. Because I’d be known for dominating and remembered millions of years from now.
A tapeworm. Because I’d either kill the host, be killed by the host, or evolve into an HR Director and be in full control.
A tiger (or insert your favorite carnivorous predator here) because then I could rip apart people who ask silly questions like “If you could be any animal, what would you be?” with my teeth and claws.
Hijack/, I did get asked the old standard “Descirbe yourself in three words” I could only come up with “Eclectic” I got the job!! /End hijack.
I’d be a cat too, sleep, food, casual noisy sex. more sleep.
I was once asked something about suffering from insanity or something negative like that, and the first thing that popped into my head was, “Suffer? I enjoy every minute of it!” Then I thought I probably should keep that to myself. But if I actually said it, and I got hired, I would KNOW that I was a good fit there. You know, as I get older and care less what other people think, I think my interviews are going to get more and more interesting.
I think the best answer for the animal question is, “What does this have to do with the job I’m interviewing for?” asked in a tone of voice that indicates you are really interested and not just being smart. See how quickly THEY think. Hmm, that’s got me thinking now - what questions should I ask interviewers to get them to tip their hands?
Well, I happen to know of someone that can help you out with that quandry…I think he’s got some sort of harness system…you’ll have to ask him, though.
“The kind that eats out of your hand until, without warning or provocation, it turns and kills you. That kind.”
“Whatever it was that ate your boy.”
“Whatever animal you’d most like to fuck - that’s the one I’m* not*, you twisted freak.”
It’s probably for the best that I’ve never been asked that question.
I’m telling you, it was the dingo…
No. No, see … I’ve got this whole backstory thing going where the interviewer’s son was pulled from the boat on a family fishing trip by something that looked like a cuttlefish but was covered in slick black otter-fur.
Although in retrospect I suppose a dingo coming out of the lake would add dramatic tension.
Slightly off topic ('pologies) but when asked the standard “Do you have any questions” question at the end of a job interview, I would love to say:
“Yes I’d like to know…can you tell me…what love is?”
Yes, and the element of surprise since the lake is in Davis, CA. How often do you get to see a dingo out here?!
And, when they ultimately ask “why”, reply
“WHY?! ‘Cuz it’d be friggin’ COOL, that’s WHY!”
“Oh I guess I’d want to be … uh … that thing … big teeth … swims a lot. Ummm”
“No, it’s the one with the funny eyes and … it makes that noise?”
“A Hammerhead shark?”
“No it’s not a fucking shark. What’s with you and the damn sharks? It swims, ok? BIG teeth. Funny eyes. Oh forget it!”
“You don’t know what a shark is do you?”
Q: If you could be any animal, what would you be?
A: I’d be a muppet that played the drums, that what I’d be.