So today I had an interview. I wasn’t that nervous, I guess because: 1) I am way overqualified for the job (which actually may mean I won’t get it); 2) I have been through lots of interviews – panel interviews, and bilingual interviews, and half-day interviews, and this was just a one-person interview; and 3) I only very recently started really looking for a job (like Monday), and right away I have had one interview and I have one recruiter interview coming up so I’m feeling all confident. Anyway, I think it went well. Mostly. At least, I sort of thought I did until I was recounting it to Bryan, and I remembered the “math” questions.
Now, I don’t really mind math – it was sort of fun in school – and I figured, interview math, piece of cake. Which it was. Ahem. So…first she says, “What’s 17 times 3?” OK, that was easy. “51,” I say after I think for a second and, you know, take the extra moment to be sure. “That’s right,” she says. “OK, now, the customer’s service costs $29.99 per month, and it’s going to be pro-rated from the day he starts until the end of the month. His service starts on the morning of the 27th and it’s a 30-day month. How much, approximately, will his bill be?” Next brilliant thing I do is count on my fingers, “27, 28, 29, 30.” Mom, that’s the reason we should never do it. Interviews. I smile sheepishly at her after I realize I’ve done this. She smiles indulgently. OK, moving on, I think. Don’t get caught up with $29.99, she said approximately, so it’s $30 – that’s easy, $30 times 4, $120. “One hundred twenty dollars,” I say confidently. She looks at me uncertainly. “Um…his service is $29.99 per month,” she says. “Oh! Yeah, yeah, sorry. Oh, I was thinking $29.99 per DAY,” I explain. Whew, I guess that would be some really good service. OK…now I’m a little more nervous…so quickly I do the calculations in my head, so as to still be able to impress her. OK, 30 days in the month, 4 days left in the month, divide 30 by 4, you get 7 - well you get somewhere between 7 and 8. Whew, done. “Between 7 and 8,” I say. She cocks her head at me. “How did you come up with that?” she says, sounding genuinely interested. Oh, she wants me to show my work, as it were, I think. No problem. “Well, because there are 30 days in the month, and 30 divided by 4is between seven and…” and down she breaks, as the saying goes.
I realize that my proration calculation is faulty in that it’s missing a vital element – the cost per day element. I was pretty much muddling about dividing the days by themselves, adding the days together, and you know, calculating the days. Hello, duh, FOUR is the answer, what could be easier? And why could I not have come up with that at first? Embarrassed now (finally), I say, “Oh!! Right. I’m sorry. Four days.” And I smile at her, relieved that I have at long last come up with the correct answer and my smile is somewhat conspiratorial because now that I have provided it, she and I can be done with this silly little segment and get back to REAL questions. She smiles at me again. “Right. Four dollars,” she says.
So… like I say, I’m hoping my scores on other sections will pull me through.