The Creepiest Job Interview Ever


With the job market as it is, I figured I'd take just about anything.

Now my last contract was related to Interiors (writing about design and all) so when I got a call from this local company, I thought: "Great, more hours staring at cabinets and stuff". But also, "Great, I can keep having three meals a day". Which means I was really was out to get the position. Until...the interview.

You'd think a magazine about Interior Design would have a nice office. Well, this one  was a toilet. And I don't mean that as a metaphor. There was a sink, drainage holes, was a converted toilet. And one of the desks was a reclaimed cubicle door. 

There were only two people in there, both prime candidates for a mental health aid poster. When they conducted the interview, one of them, this skinny manager type guy, kept leaning close to me when he talked. I mean close as in "nose almost touching my neck" close. After a few seconds I sidled the chair away, but he *started moving with me*. Did I mention he was eating? The crumbs from his goddamn sandwich were landing on my shoulder, that's how close he was. 

The other guy was like a reject off the set of a Jason Bourne flick. He asked me *nothing* about the "design writing" job. Instead he asked me to produce my IC, my driver's license, a photograph of my next-of-kin (which I didn't have, and wouldn't have shown if I had), and he kept demanding proof of identity. He wanted my birth certificate, my BAPTISM certificate, and he "needed to know" which kindergarten I went to. He straight up told me that he suspected I was a foreigner, and that I was here without a work permit. Else why wouldn't I bring my birth certificate?

How do you answer a question like that?

Then he looked through my portfolio, and started asking things like: "Did you like this one? Why did you write it so positive? Did they pay you to do it? Did you find out if this wood they used is Eco-friendly?" and the ultimate:

"How do you know they really did the design? I know one man who paid his Uncle to do it."

Then he jerked his head at me with his eyes bulging out, like it was entirely my fault, or that I was the wayward designer in questioner. 

By the time they offered coffee, I was beyond freaked. I just thanked them and said I had to be going now, thank you. The interviewer just grunted and said something about illegal immigrants. 



Aug 8, 11 12:34 am

Becareful there... they were probably scam artists or identity thefts. :S

Aug 8, 11 1:29 am  · 

Wow...I know there are questions employers are NOT allowed to ask. I belive you can report them, but I dont know who you report them to.

Aug 8, 11 10:14 am  · 

are you sure it wasnt some sort of candid camera show? 

Aug 8, 11 10:45 am  · 

Uhhhh.....just plain weird....

Aug 8, 11 11:21 am  · 

I know a guy who applied for a job at Philip Johnson's office. Johnson conducted the interview in his bedroom while wearing a bathrobe.


Aug 8, 11 12:40 pm  · 

You should have reached for the baseball bat...hidden behind the curtain.  I had a female European friend married to an American  who was waiting for her green car but interviewing Architecture Firms and well she was propositioned by the person interviewing her, telling he he could move her green card along. She walked...and well her legacy is outstanding.

Aug 8, 11 7:30 pm  · 

If this is a true story, you should have walked out immediately after you saw the 'office'.  I once had an interviewer ask me "and how do we KNOW this is your work?", and "Why didn't you bring your diploma with you?".   Humoring and answering their inane questions only encourages them. Ick.

Aug 8, 11 7:58 pm  · 

These people are insane!

Aug 13, 11 4:14 pm  · 

Hey!  At least PJ was wearing a robe... it could have been far worse!

Aug 14, 11 1:46 pm  · 

Does anyone remember the MTV series, Boiling Point? I think you just lost $100.

Aug 14, 11 6:02 pm  · 

Sorry to read this, you can teport them to the BBB (better business bureau) This may cheer you up; "youtube monty python silly job interview"

Aug 15, 11 7:44 am  · 
Lian Chikako Chang


Aug 17, 11 7:01 am  · 

I know what you mean -
I've interviewed all my life, I average 2 a year while I have a job and significantly more when I'm in between gigs (like now!). I've had bad interviews, horrible interviews, I even had a guy die on me once. but this one was the worst.

Meeting was at 1:00 and I arrived at the golden hour of 12:45. This allows me to see the employees at their lunchtime best and identify if they are a cup-a-soup crowd or a subway crowd. The office is not an office, but a house, next to a small but busy regional airport. Every two minutes the entire structure rattles and shakes as tiny 4-seater planes barely clear the roof. The odd part was watching the employees as this is happening. Aluminum bullets loaded with aviation fuel are literally 5-10 feet above their heads and their discussing Lady GaGa's Grammy dress as if nothing is odd. The waiting room is not a lobby, but a converted mudroom and it contains a "reception" desk.

My interview was with the VP and he was late from lunch. He arrived somewhere around 10 after and we proceeded past the kitchen to one of the bedrooms which serves as his office. Now this house was converted to an office sometime in the 60's but it STILL had 60's space/rocket wallpaper! It also contained two desks. It seemed odd that a VP would share an office, but then again, at least it didn't have bunk beds!

He sits down and the very first words out of his mouth are - "I have no idea why Mike sent you here" (always a charmer this guy). He mentions that according to my resume, I've never worked in this industry and I quickly point out that in many of my jobs I was new to the industry and this allowed me to bring a fresh approach. Apparently, he's not looking for fresh. He wants someone with a golden rolodex, ability to talk the talk, and willing to pay for client's lap dances at the many fine establishments in the area (where I'm sure they have a tab).

Suffice to say this last interview lasted all of 8 minutes. I was outside ducking airplanes at 1:20 pm. I then went to the Hospice to visit my dad for a more uplifting experience.


Aug 17, 11 11:40 am  · 

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