Throughout this year’s Baseball Winter Meetings in Nashville, four attendees of the PBEO Job Fair have agreed to keep a journal chronicling their employment seeking experiences. (Meet them all HERE). In this installment, Clint Belau rides the emotional rollercoaster amidst an overstimulating atmosphere.
Tuesday, 12/4/12 — A LITTLE RAIN CAN’T SLOW ME DOWN
As I woke up still riding the high of having a beer bought for me by the manager of my favorite team, I prepared for a rainy morning hike to Opryland. Although yesterday was slow overall, I remained hopeful that today would be different. Upon arrival at the ever popular interview room around 10 o’clock (calm down, I’m not that much of a slacker. I got there at 9, I just got caught up on the lobby talking to a few folks), my hopes were a bit dashed. My name was non-existent on every list, and the new job postings were minimal. On this day, it wasn’t due to a lack of lists…there were plenty of interview schedules posted. I just apparently had not made the cut.
But far be it for this Debby to get down. I decided to get back on the horse by heading down to the trade show for a bit. A larger mecca of sports-related vendors I had never seen. If my eyes manage to remain in my head this entire week, it’ll be a miracle. Bats, turf, mascot outfits, fan engagement technology (nice new term usage CB!), shirts, hats, uniforms, bobbleheads, golf carts, hitting instruction tools and yes, even free hot dogs, filled the various booths. Oh, and Miss Florida was there too. I had the opportunity to speak with a couple of the vendors that were kind enough to put up with me and my questions about what their business relationship is like with a given team. In the matter of the hour, I not only learned a lot, but developed a small brainful (I have limited space available) of ideas to implement with (caution: egotistical statement upcoming) whatever team is fortunate enough to employ me.
Click HERE to see MiLB.com’s Trade Show photo gallery
After a quick check of the interview scheduling room, the interview situation, for me, had not changed. Lots of new interview schedule lists, none included my name. I headed back over near the MLB TV set, which is apparently the location I seek when needing to re-center my chi, and it indeed worked. As I strolled through, I bumped into Ken Rosenthal, Harold Reynolds and Jack Morris. With that, the nerdy grin was back on my face, and I was reminded of what an amazing environment this is. And within seconds of successful chi alignment, I had a text from a team that I had interviewed with on Monday! Not only did they want another interview, but this one would be with the owner of the team! I don’t think they bring the owner in to tell you that you sucked in the first interview, and they never want to hear from you again. After a quick meet up with their general manager to discuss the time and place, we planned to meet Wednesday. Which gives me approximately 24 hours to obsess over ridiculous, hypothetical scenarios.
A return to what was becoming an increasingly sedated workroom, brought forth conversations of varying attitudes. Some candidates had as many as a dozen interviews today and are excited (read: hopped up on Red Bull), some had fewer, but remain hopeful, and sprinkled in the mix were the depressed. I’ve done my best to try to pick them up a bit, but when some people want to sulk, they just want to sulk. Well, go for it. Me, I’m determined to enjoy every step of this journey. I’m also determined to get more free hot dogs, so it’s back to the trade show!
Today’s not as cool as yesterday, but still this is a pretty cool story – On the advice of The Dude (not in a derogatory sense, as I feel like this particular gentlemen would appreciate the Big Lebowski comparison) at the mini mart near my hotel, I decided to visit John A’s, for what was touted as “the best catfish sandwich I’ll ever have”. It was indeed delicious. However, after finishing my meal and beginning a lengthy interview session with the vacationers to my immediate left, a legend of the game strolled into the bar. With a posse of four guardians, Tommy Lasorda made as grand an entrance as could be made into a bar with a mere ten partons. As he headed for a table, he walked directly towards me. Now I had arrived at John A’s around 9, and this was taking place at 11:15, so I was feeling fairly confident. As Mr. Lasorda approached, I extended my hand, and out spilled a surprisingly calm “It’s a pleasure to meet you, Mr. Lasorda”. As he shook my hand, the words “syntax error” most likely scrolled acorss my eyes. My brain shut off for the remainder of the night, and somehow, I ended up back in my hotel room, eating a bag of Cheez-its, and literally laughing out loud at the ridiculousness of this week. With one day of interviewing left, my confidence was at an all time high.
Clint’s rollicking narrative is far from over; perhaps it will never end. Check back later this week for more. That’s an order