People Are Strange When You’re A Stranger

spies like me

Hey Gang!

So, I was going to post this last week but it was such an unbelievable thing that I had to let it marinade. Let the whole situation really sink in. It was one of those days when you think to yourself, “This cannot be real. This doesn’t really happen, does it?”

It does.

So, I have been slinging my resume around like a chimpanzee slinging his poo (too graphic?). I have been using many online job finder sites and basically just putting it in to any job whose description read, “Now Hiring”. I have recently had a lot of great feedback and interviews from the site but that isn’t what this post is about. This post is about the first interview I went on and the bizarre nature of the experience.

I had gotten an email from an individual who claimed that they needed someone to help edit iMovie projects for their online business. I have had a lot of experience with iMovie and genuinely love editing video. So, I was more than happy to meet with them.

I am naive. I have no doubt about that. I like to think that everyone has the best intentions and that everyone is generally trying to be good. So, when I saw the address was on a county road, I began to think to myself, “what kind of business is on a county road and why at 530 at night?” Then a thought creeped upon me that it may be a person’s house. I shrugged that off and thought that since they sell farming equipment it was naturally in an area where farming is done.

I got all gussied-up and put on my tie and P-coat. I headed out to the destination which is somewhat a distance from where I live but you can’t really complain where the money is coming from and at what distance you’ll go when you are wondering which flavor of Ramen you would like to eat that night. Because Ramen is the only choice.

I am driving and, after about a half hour, I hear my little gps say, your destination is on the right.  I am a few minutes early and in the dark blue horizon of the setting sun I see a rather large, white house with a two car garage attached. There is one light on and it all seems creepy as I realize, “Yup, this is at somebody’s house.”

I drive down the road, contemplating just driving away, but I finally decide to go to the interview, bills still weighing on my mind.

I pull up and get out, all of the sudden, a rather large dog begin barking a deep, chesty, cough of a bark as he gallops towards me. I freeze as it reminds me of when I was a child and was chased by three rottweilers and a Doberman pincher for three blocks and almost got hit by a UPS truck. The dog is a few feet in front of me and gives me a low growl. I was thinking, “I may be the first man to be mauled to death on job interview….ever.”

I see a little woman pop out of the garage and yell, “Sammi! Leave him alone dammnit! It’s okay she won’t bite you. Come on in.”

I go into this unmodest house. It is quite incredible coming from the relatively humble upbringing I had. I was used to being enamored by houses with more than two toilets but this place…had four! It was incredibly large and modern. It had nice argyle carpeting, a basement (fully furnished), and a massive backyard that lead to cornfields. It was rather empty, though. A few pictures adorned the walls but for the most part, it was a bit cold. She tells me to sit down and gives me a glass of water. Her husband will be home soon, she tells me. She is on the phone with a person about to interview for the secretary position.

I sit and sip my glass of warm tap water and it happens. That little “Oh, Sh**” light starts to go off in the back of my mind. I should definitely leave at this point….but I don’t. Sammi changes her tune about me and I begin scratching her little head. It’s cute and fun until I realize that her hair is swirling around me and getting on my “interview” clothes. It reminds me how weird this is again.

The petite woman and I talk idly and then we go down the long hallway past the immense master bedroom and into the home office….where I would work…in their house…

She turns to me and smiles up at me. She tells me how unbelievably tall I am and then gently rubs my arm. I sit down immediately and pop in my video reel of stuff I have shot and edited. She decides to talk about her new iPhone for a moment so I tell her what I know about it and then she says, out of nowhere, “You are a cool, tall drink of water!”

“I always saw myself as more of a lukewarm cup of tea,” I say.

She laughs and touches my arm again. I hear the door open from down the hall. Her husband is finally home, so I stand up to greet him as he enters. He is a short robust gentlemen, with a large grin that is perpetually on his face but always having a twinge of malice. They are both seemingly nice people but they are rich and extremely rich but also eccentric . They bought those large monitor macs, two of them, on a whim for his business. The guy invented some new polymer and this is just his side business! Ominously, do you know what separates crazy people from rich people? Money.

I show them my videos and we go back into the kitchen area. We talk more and more about the job position which is seeming less glamorous by the minute as it is tentative and he has so many random ideas. He kept bragging about the shots he had done and was wanting me to tell him how great I thought they were so I abide. Up to this point I never really felt severely uncomfortable even with the creepy advances of the wife . It just kept getting more and more outlandish and then strip clubs were brought up at one point. He went into a big diatribe about synthetic fertilizers or something and then he gave me a bit of a curveball…

He was telling me that they were going to a business fair with 107 other businesses that were their competition. I quote as close to what I can remember:

“I always got some money in my pocket. Money is literally no object. Now, here is what I want you to do. Get in and pretend to be a student who is doing a story for a class or sumtin, then take a picture of each booth and interview a person for 45 seconds or so about what they do at their business. Then, when you are done, just bring it back and I will pay you handsomely. I always got a few Franklins in my pockets”

He said all this with a devious smile. His wife watching my reaction intently.

“Yeah, okay, so corporate espionage,” I say laughingly. I thought he was joking.

“Don’t laugh. That’s exactly what it is,” his wife says flatly.


I couldn’t believe it! They wanted me to be a spy! I ended the meeting about there and told them I had to go. As I packed up I thought about taking all of those other applications they had for secretary and running so that no woman would have to be there alone with Mr. and Mrs. Run-like-hell away from us.

I got in my car and called my mom and had to laugh at how insane it all was. Being hit on by a married woman, the eccentric millionaire and being asked to be a spy as well as a love slave was too much. I left out how much they said they liked my look, many times they said this.

My mom reiterated those thoughts to me and said, “Maybe just pass up an interview at someone’s house from now on.”

Words to live by but I can’t help thinking how interesting it would have been to be a spy…

I found them strange but maybe it was because I didn’t know them. Strangers meeting strangers….nah, they were just plain weird.



6 thoughts on “People Are Strange When You’re A Stranger

  1. I feel like giving you a hug. Crazy stuff happens to me too, sometimes I just want to cry, sometimes it makes me glad to be alive. Hopefully you find decent employers soon:0)

    1. Well thanks beenan! I feel like at the end all we have is stories and even though sometimes the stories may be a little on the crazy side it is still a good story. My best friend got me a signed copy of a book by my favorite author Chuck Palahniuk and it reads “to Chris- live a life worth writing about”

      I live by those words now!

  2. “Brrrrr…” Just the idea that you were actually alone in the house with that scheming couple gives me the shiver! Thank God they didn’t hold you at gun point and push the job offer down your throat…my word…reminds me of my ol’ mum’s advice; “Petit Jean, n’entre jamais dans la maison des etrangers!”…meaning; “Little John, never go inside the house of strangers!” You a lucky chap, Chris!


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