I am a job gypsy.


In the past three years, I have been a temporary employee working for about three different temp agencies since I moved to Philadelphia from California. Some people like working as a temp because you only work in three month—sometimes, two day—increments, and it's always something different every time. And to be honest, I have a lot of experience now in various positions where I could technically put on my resume.

For instance, I understand the basics of working for a spa or a hair salon because I was a receptionist at a spa. I know how to send an order back at a college bookstore for a book that's out of print. I know how to file for a permit at a local zoning office for a construction or remodel job. I know, some basic dental work is billed, and I understand the ins and outs of Medicare, and also supplemental insurance. I know how, and if I want to sign up for a project management certificate, who to call and what it entails. I know how nursing homes work and also, how to walk an elderly person who doesn't really look at technical stuff, through setting up a personal medical device.

From my past experience, I know how to embalm a body, direct a parade, and I can work almost any cash register known to man. I can count change backwards without thinking about it. I have killed birds with my bare hands to mix in animal food, for a much bigger animal. I can talk any irate customer down from a ledge. Large volumes of people coming at me do not scare me at all. I can type 50 words per minute, manage a quickbooks account and troubleshoot any website over the phone. I am working on having four languages in my repertoire. (Right now, I only have two real, good ones.)

But what does this make me, now that I am grown up?

Answer: absolutely nothing.

The problem is, employers don't like seeing all this experience and not a lot of work put into one job, even though every single job I work to my full capacity. (Ok, maybe not at the job where I printed flyers—that was SUPER boring and it was just two weeks long, thank God.) It makes me look like a flake, which I am not. There aren't any permanent benefits or health insurance offered by most of the temp agencies themselves, but that might change.

I don't really make any workplace proximity friends because I don't stay at one place for longer than three months. I love it.

But, on the upside, I have not applied for a job I did not get at least an interview for. I know every interview question and can tailor it to that particular company. I can basically converse with anyone, about anything. I will know a little about it. If I don't know about it, I know how to ask a question so that person gives me the info, but frame it so they don't remember that I asked for the knowledge. I am a walking body of utterly useless knowledge, and I like it that way.

Melissa K Rodriguez
Melissa K Rodriguez
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Melissa K Rodriguez
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