Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Blast From The Past

June 14, 2007
Fullmetal Dreams

It was around mid-morning of  June 11.  The tricycle, which I boarded at Shaw, finally found the condominium where the company held its office. Getting out of the trike, I sent a text message telling the recruiter that I had already arrived.  He replied shortly and told me to wait.  He was just doing some important stuff and would attend to me shortly.

When I reached the unit,  I pressed the doorbell several times but nobody answered.  I looked inside and found the unit nearly empty.  There was a worn-out and dusty sofa near the door; across the living room was a dining table.  The table separates the sala from the kitchen.

I stood at the front door until another guy appeared.  He was sporting  a long hair and a rugged get up.  He introduced himself as an applicant, who's shift in a call center had just ended.   We talked briefly about his job, since I was set to join Convergys after passing their English refresher course a week before.

Suddenly, a short, rounded guy with glasses showed up. Looking at his face, the guy was in his mid-thirties.  He was wearing a Lacoste shirt and a cream-colored pants. He had this laid-back appeal, preferring conversations without formalities.  In fact, he got along with the other applicant whose candor made him appear very confident to me.

The interviewer lead us to the dining table and introduced himself as Pie.  He is the boss of the company. As he gave a brief history of his enterprise, he took some entertainment magazines from one of the chairs.  He then pointed at the advertisements with words ending with  "text mates. "  We read the ads from each magazine and when we were already had an idea about the job, Pie told us that we will become chatters. Our job was to reply to text messages pretending to be the girls in the ads.

His revelations made me pause and clear my throat.   I think I'm not yet ready to hear what he said.  "You mean we have to think and act like girls these users text? How's that possible?" I asked Pie.

"That's why we look for  people who are innate actors and actresses; you have to be open-minded in this kind of job," he explained. "This is an adult-oriented business. Are you cool with it?"

I felt silent.  While further elaborating the job, all I could think of is whether I am in the right career path, or whether the company I would be joining is legitimate or not.

At that moment, life presented me with two options: Being hired in Convergys was just days - if not weeks away. I could patiently wait for their call, or grab this opportunity now since I badly needed a source of income.

The other applicant, who felt a little restless during the interview asked things about benefits and all those job security crap. Since I understood that Pie's business was just starting, I look forward to get only my basic pay.

Other benefits must wait.

Pie asked me to stay downstairs while he introduced the interface to the other applicant. While waiting for them to return,  I phoned a friend who might be interested to try the company - even as a part-time job. Unfortunately he was already enjoying his work at C-Cube, so he said good luck with my interview. When Pie and the applicant returned, the latter can't hardly speak.  He appeared disturbed and confused - not only to me but also to the boss as well.  Within minutes, he informed us that he needed to leave. Nevertheless, he told Pie that he would seriously think about the offer.

The interviewer then asked me to come with him so that he could introduce me not only to the team, but also to the account I will be handling.

He lead me into a small room with five computers. There were three agents tapping their keyboard. One was a girl with big chinky eyes, the other was a guy and the last one, who was loud and flamboyant, was a transvestite.   He first introduced me to the guy - who was just hired a week before. We would be working for the same account that's why it's important that we get along well.  Unlike the other two, who were more interested in chit-chatting with one another than acknowledging my presence, this new guy was extremely quiet.

He nodded when Pie introduced us to one another.

The interviewer asked me to sit in front of the computer. He then opened the link and keyed the password so I could access the account.

Within minutes, I was already replying to the incoming texts appearing on the computer screen.

"Hi, my name is Karla. Do you like to chat with me? How are you?" I slowly typed in the message screen.

"Not bad Mugen," Pie said. "Do you know that there are some applicants who would take ten minutes to compose such simple introduction?"

Feeling satisfied with my work, Pie left to check on the other agents.  From time to time, he would take a look at  my screen, read my replies, then move on to return to the other agents - who at that time were having conflicts with their day-offs.  I kept my cool during those tense moments. Remembering how good I've been in MirC. I told myself that I will get this job, no matter what.

Hours passed and I didn't even notice that the agents' shift were about to end. Sensing that I  had enough exposure for a day. I told Pie that I will have to leave.

On our way out, he gave me some pointers about the job, the interface I would be working and the environment that I will be exposed.

After three months of being jobless,  I was hired on the spot.

It's been six years since I was introduced to Pie and his company.  Mami Athena came a month after I was hired.  This has been my life ever since.


Seth said...

Im quite interested as well ^^

ericthespaceoutjunkie said...

that was intriguing. oh and thanks for dropping by. :)

Ms. Chuniverse said...

First time ko nalaman na may ganitong work. Interesting. =)

c - e - i - b - o - h said...

shalla!! anu ito?? hihihi
oo nga,, this is interesting! :))

odin hood said...

interesting.. pwede bang part-time diyan? haha i bet mas malaki pa swelduhin ko diyan kaysa sa current job ko

Blakrabit said...

Haha! Ayos ah. Hindi talaga kapani paniwala ang mga text ads na yan!

@odin: sigurado papatok ka dyan sis! :D

RainDarwin said...

Natanggal ang isang maskara mo Papa Joms! hahahaahha.

Gusto ko ring maging Karla. Ako muna ang reliever mo, pwede ba?

canonista said...

Ah... ehto pala 'yun.