Wednesday, April 29, 2009

I Used My Best Phone Voice, Too

What better use of my unemployed time could I make than volunteering? With that in mind, I spent 3 hours today at WRIR (93.1) as a phone volunteer for their fund drive. I'm pleased to say I took three pledges, 2 messages for the staff and l long-winded call from a woman wanting to know why her radio couldn't hold the signal for 105 point something. I guess she thought all the radio stations are in cahoots and know what's up with each other...or something.

There were a couple other volunteers there when I arrived and, lo and behold, they were both unemployed too. One guy had just been laid off after 34 years with the same company. 34 years!He started that job part-time in high school! It's the only thing he's ever done and now he's got to find another job at 53. He wasn't optimistic but at least he had 6 months of severance pay to tide him over while he looks.

The other guy was 28 and desperately seeking work. Just while I was there, he filled out online applications for 3 different jobs. He said he always followed up submitting applications with calling the company. Daily. Finally one woman told him that she was tired of hearing his voice and not to call anymore. Employment etiquette aside, I don't think he helped his job chances any.

While I was there, a former neighbor came in to make a pledge; turns out he's unemployed also. I was beginning to feel like I was in the Laid Off Twilight Zone, so it was particularly gratifying when a girl came in with her laptop to do some work for her part-time job. Finally! Someone in the room with gainful employment...maybe I should touch her for good luck?

What I learned today: Even in the tough times, people are still giving of their time and limited funds for the worthwhile causes. And WRIR (you know, "radio for the rest of us") is surely that.

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