hitting my wall

I woke up down.

I am fatigued.
From job hunting. If I have to fill out one more application, adding to the tall stack already out there that receives no response, I will cry.

From poring through craigslist every day and repeatedly throughout the day and reading every single ad in every single category, even those in which I have no qualifications, because I don't want to miss a thing. Job-hunting has become the proverbial search for the needle in the haystack.

I'm frightened:

by how opportunities have dried up in my area these months. It's noticeable, even in the crap job categories. When employers tell me they received 200 applications for blue-collar low-level openings, I'm not surprised.

The woman I interviewed with yesterday told me when she arrived at the shop, there was already a long line of applicants. For a kitchen job. Paying a hair over minimum wage. I want to cry, the heaviness in my heart is so heavy.

I fear:

what the holidays will be like. Not because of gifts (aside from the yearly calendar and small items exchanged with my mother, my circle stepped out of the crass commercialism and discontinued gifts long ago) but the winter months being the slowest employment season.  Even retailers are hiring nowhere near the number of seasonal employees as before.

I fear:

I'd better get a shot of whiskey now at 1.17 p.m. before I'm a sobbing puddle on the floor.

Thing about looking for work, you can't stop, no matter how fatigued you are. How tired. How hopeless you are. How burned out. How much you recoil at the thought of one more application (and likely one that no one will pay attention to  anyhow).

I've never gone this long being unable to find a job.

The other day I paid a second visit to a new cafe I'd applied to before they opened.

"How's it going?" I ask. Got to talking. The guy they hired can't make a salad properly.

"How hard is it to make a salad?"

And here I'd applied with a resume chockful of food service experience. Talked with them at length.

Could I make a salad? Fuck yeah. And then some. I could be a manager. Yet they hire a guy who can't even make a salad. I don't understand the thinking of employers.

This is probably the most boring post I've ever written. I'll be surprised if anyone's read this far. And if you have, kudos. And why?

This is only me, one person in the millions who are without work and, hopefully, looking. And looking as hard as I am.

Still, this is my life and I am in it and I am hurting a lot right now and so are so many others.

Which is why I post these pictures.

What do I need? I asked myself this morning. In addition to a job. A hug.

And some chuckles. Hence the redneck jokes. Low-brow humor is good when your head hurts from worrying and fear and fatigue is the cement blocks on your feet. Good luck to all who are job-hunting. I mean that most sincerely.

Now to the jokes …

There's a senior citizen driving on the highway. His wife calls him on his cell phone and in a worried voice says, ''Herman, be careful! I just heard on the radio that there’s a madman driving the wrong way on Route 280!''

Herman says, ''I know, but there isn't just one, there are hundreds!''

* * * *

What did the redneck do with his his first 50-cent piece?
He married her!

* * * *
How many rednecks, does it take to screw in a lightbulb?
Three. One to hold the bulb, and two to turn the ladder.

* * * *

What do you call an Alabama farmer with a sheep under each arm?
A pimp.

* * * *

A redneck boy runs into his house and proclaims, "I've found the girl that I'm gonna marry! And she's a virgin!"

Incensed, his father pounds his fist on the table.

"There's no way you'll marry that girl! If she aint' good enough for her own family, she ain't good enough for ours."

* * * *

A Tennessee man and an Alabama man were both fighting in a war and were captured by the enemy.
"Before we put you to death," said the enemy, "do you have any last requests?"
"Yes," said the Alabaman. "Could you play 'Yeah, Alabama' before you shoot me?"
"Sure," said the enemy. "How about you, Tennessean?"
"Could you shoot me before you play 'Yeah, Alabama?'"

* * * *

Two tourists are driving through Louisiana. As they’re approaching Natchitoches, they begin arguing about the pronunciation of the town.

They argue back and forth until they stop for lunch. At the counter, one tourist asks the employee: "Before we order, could you please settle an argument for us? Would you please pronounce where we are … very slowly?"

The guy leans over the counter and says, "Burrrrrr-gerrrrr Kiiinnnggg."

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