Origin of the phrase Man/Girl Friday – An efficient and devoted aide or employee; a right-hand man to an executive. Friday is a character in Daniel Defoe’s novel, ‘The Life and Strange Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, of York, Mariner,’ published 1719-1720. Friday is the young native man rescued by Robinson Crusoe, certainly the best-known castaway in literature…(Crusoe) calls him ‘man Friday’ because he met him on a Friday…I will come back to this.
I haven’t posted in a minute because it has been pretty busy here in Colorado. Busy with work, busy with a friend I mentioned before when I first moved here (Monroe), and busy with the comings and goings of life in general.
Work at the Child Development Center has been good, however it has been exhausting. The Center is incredibly low staffed which leaves all of the extra work to be done on the staff they actually have. Caring for children is exhausting work, even if it’s fun. I still very much enjoy the CDC and the children and the staff but earlier this week I had a dream.
Something that may not be well known is that my dreams are very, very vivid and I often have moments of Deja Vu`. This dream was one of those dreams:
I dreamt that I was planning an event for a radio station. It was a large scale, ritzy event and many important people were going to be in attendance. I was sitting in one of the radio studios, having a talk show about the event I had been planning. It wasn’t anything really special. My dream-self just seemed to be having an ordinary day at work.
When I woke up I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I kept thinking about how much I missed radio, and event planning and working with grown-ups. On Thursday I applied for a few jobs here and there on my lunch break. Most of them seemed out of my reach but I thought, “What the heck, right? Best time to look for a job is when you have one.”
I thought nothing more of it until late Friday morning when I stopped inside the classroom to tidy up while all of the kids were outside. I check my phone and I had a new voicemail. I always get recording voice mails from scammers, or surveys. I figured it was just more garbage until I began listening.
It was a man named Kevan who wanted to interview me over the phone at my earliest convenience, perhaps sometime that day or the next. Sneakily, in the supply closet that attaches our classroom to the one next door, I called him back and told him I would be happy to chat on my lunch break.
A few hours later I drove home for lunch as quickly as I could, excited and nervous about the phone interview I was going to have. We spoke for nearly 25 minutes while he explained the duties I would have if I came to work for him, and told me a bit about his compan(ies)–Worley Enterprises, WE Fit, and a radio station he owns.
Before I continue, Worley Enterprises is a group that employs disabled people and veterans. They also plan events for the military and work closely with the Foundation Fighting Blindness.
Mr. Worley was…is a very interesting and quick-witted man. He must have liked me because he wanted to set an in person interview at his home office the next day, Saturday. I was a bit shocked at how quickly everything was moving, and also apprehensive.
I woke up early and prepared my resume and portfolio and got ready. On the way Alex and I stopped at Dutch Brother’s Coffee (the best coffee in the area, and makes Starbuck coffee seem like swill). We sat outside of the home office for about 20 minutes and sipped our iced coffees before I went to the door.
As I stepped out of my car and young woman in a beat-up silver Seabring pulled into the drive. She seemed about 25 with dark hair. She was wearing a pink tank top and faded yoga pants. She had a large dog in the back seat. She bustled into the house with the dog and a little paper bag and came back outside as I was walking up the drive. Who in the world was this person?
“Is this the Worley residence?” I asked her.
“Yes! Are you… here for Bridgette?” She asked, and before I could answer, “I’m Mallory by the way, sweetie.”
“Actually, I’m here for Kevan. Mr. Worley…”
“Oh! I’m Bridgette’s personal assistant.”
At this point I assumed Bridgette was Mrs. Worley.
“I didn’t know they had an appointment this morning,” Mallory said and turned to go back inside. Over her shoulder she said, “Hold on a second. I’ll go tell them you’re here.”
I waited outside, examining my reflection in their glass door. I kind of wished I hadn’t worn the skirt that I did.
“Come on in, hon,” Mallory said, beckoning me in, with her large dog slobbering at her side. I followed her in and patted the dog, hoping he wouldn’t jump on me and looked around the front space of the home. It was lovely and decorated with gold and dark green hues. A woman with short dark hair stood at the sink in the kitchen to my left and smiled at me warmly. She stepped forward and reached out to shake my hand. When I took it she introduced herself as Bridgette. From a room rather back a man’s voice said:
“Brooke, Brooke, Brooke Adamek.”
He was not what I was expecting; I’m still not sure who I was expecting, but it wasn’t him. He was about 5’10”, with graying hair and a groomed-looking beard. He had an orange polo shirt and khakis on, but no shoes (to be fair, it was his home office). But when I looked up into his eyes as I shook his hand I saw that he was unmistakably blind.
The Worleys welcomed me in and invited me into their home office. Two desks sat in a well lit room with plush chairs, office plants, lamps, computers and a little far off stood a small studio with mics, sound boards and recording equipment. Mr. Worley invited me to sit down across from him and I set my portfolio out in front of his wife, and handed her the thank you card I wrote for them that morning.
He asked me a few standard questions about why I might want to work for him, my college experiences, quizzed me on the voices of NPR, Kansas City and what kind of BBQ I like. Then he has me sit down at one of the computers and told me he was going to test me. Part of me hoped it was a joke, being tested, but it wasn’t.
At this point he had me open his email, write a few emails to people he knows and works with and send them. He wanted to see how quickly I could type. Next he had me find specific emails from specific people to see if I could, in fact, use Microsoft Outlook. Next he had me google the hashtag #Howeyeseeit, and gave me three minutes to get as much information as I could on the hashtag itself, the challenge that comes with the hashtag, and the group who created the hashtag. I took notes in my allotted time and he seemed impressed with my ability to research quickly.
I guess that’s a perk of being a millennial. Next he had me put in my demo-reel, read aloud my writing samples, and wanted to know if I knew anything about politics (being the young whipper-snapper I am). Luckily, I was a reporter at the Iowa Caucus this year and find politics pretty interesting.
The final part of my test was to pull up Facebook and tell him what his most recent Facebook post was. It was a link to a Youtube video playing one of his favorite songs. I passed the test.
I came back to sit across from him and he wanted to know if I had any questions. At this point, I wanted to take this job if it was offered to me. I wanted to do something more with my degree–and at Worley Enterprises I would get to.
My current job pays really well for what I do, my commute is literally two minutes and it’s an incredibly secure position. The risk of taking a job where I get to do what I have a degree for is scary. I actually would need to apply myself and work really hard to do well (not that I’m scared of a challenge or to work hard). I felt and still feel scared–what if I can’t do it? What if I’m not good enough at this job? What if I quit my super secure job with semi-decent pay for this job that’s amazing and pays well and I am told to leave after a week?
I decided to ask Mr. Worley more about what I would be doing, and it’s a very wide range of things. He told me I would be a “Girl Friday” and “Jaqueline of all trades.” I would be doing everything from managing his email accounts, social media accounts, helping research topics for WE Fit’s weekly podcast, and attending conferences in Denver (and other places) with their team to name a few things.
I would also be salaried. I get a week off for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years–all paid (same goes for all other federal holidays). They pay medical but because I already have that through Alex, the extra money goes into my pay check. This job comes with so much more than I have now.
It’s crazy to think that all of this started with a dream I had on Tuesday night, not even a week ago. But I’m going to go for it. After taking a few days to think about it and talk with Alex and my parents… I’m going to take the new job. I’m excited to start my career, work with grownups and make better money. I’m excited for the opportunities in front of me.
Until next time…