Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy New Years!


ATTENTION ALL PARTY ANIMALS!
AAA is offering a FREE, yes that's right FREE drive and tow home if you are too drunk to drive! You do not need to be a AAA member, they offer this to EVERYONE. Just call this number: 1-800-222-4357 to assure you and your car get home safe! Be smart and take advantage of this offer, or take a taxi, or have a sober driver. Never drink and drive!



Good afternoon everyone that has hung on with us through what I like to call, “the ridiculous dead times of the unsuccessful”. First off, I want to apologize for leaving you guys stranded for a number of days. Secondly, I want to wish everyone a happy Christmas/New Year’s Eve. Lastly, I want to tell you that 2012 is your year.

Listen, according to the Mayan Calendar, the world is going to end sometime in December of next year. So basically, that leaves us with twelve solid months of awesomeness to really make our lives what we want it to be. We at the unsuccessful wish only that each and every one of you live life on your own terms. I know it seems contradictory to our general message with this blog, however, it is my view that a job is a means to an end. It sucks, but to do the things you want in life, it takes money. It takes money to buy badass shit. It takes money to travel the world. Heck, it even takes money to buy groceries so you don’t starve (unless of course you are on EBT. Refer to our second post in November if you don’t know what that is). The point is a job is a job and we all want one so we can start doing something other than eating frozen burritos and surfing the Internet in a poorly lit bedroom.

So 2011 wasn’t the best year for you. You spent most of the year trying to make sure you could pay rent, buy groceries, and maybe go out for a drink or two on the weekends. You bailed on a date because you realized you couldn’t even afford to go to a decent sit down meal outside your house. The only thing you could ask your parents to give you for your birthday was money, and that’s lame. You banked on Christmas cards from obscure relatives, in the hopes that you could get ahead a little bit before the New Year hit. I know the feeling. It’s shit.

However, 2012 is a new year. It's time to think optimistically. Companies are going to start hiring again for the coming year. Restaurants are going to pick up again. You are going to make it work. Maybe you have to reevaluate where you want to end up at the end of next year. Maybe you have to move in with your parents for a couple months while you gear up for your next big run at success. Just make sure you do make a run at it. Sure 2011 shit all over your dreams and expectations, but we don’t even know this guy 2012. He could turn out to be pretty cool, so give him a chance.

Like I said, we have twelve months to make a bunch of money and blow it all on awesomely pointless stuff before the rapture hits. What if the Mayan Calendar is wrong and we don’t all turn to dust because the planets align twelve months from now? Who really cares? If you lived like the world was going to end, my guess is that you would get a bunch of shit done and do a lot of really amazing things. Simply put, you would have a good year.

Happy New Year to each of you!


Written By: Adam E. Hascall 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Weekly Top 10 - Week One

It was brought to my attention today that we have not posted in 9 days! Our sincerest apologies those of you reading. The lack of posts has not been due to writer's block or lost interest. We have been hard on the job hunt grind, and of course, Christmas is here. We have actually been sitting on this idea of introducing a  weekly "Top 10" list. So, here is the first of many Top 10's to come.



This week we introduce you to the Top 10: Cheap Activities (to do with your boring and unsuccessful spare time)

1. Read (FREE - $3.00)
Obvious number in the Top 10? Probably, but lets get real... most of you don't crack open a book. Time to change that. Turn off the television, log out of facebook, and open a book. Allows for brain function, imagination, and relaxation. And most important, it will entertain hours of your day that you typically use thinking about really depressing shit. No money for books? Not a problem try, www.free-ebooks.net for free downloads of thousands of books. Check your local goodwill, they typically have a broad collection of books for under 3 dollars, or simply browse Amazon.com and get an amazing deal on the book you were eye-balling at Barnes & Noble last week. Speaking of which, you can also sit inside Barnes & Noble and read their books and magazines for free as well. I do it all the time.

2. Go On A Walk (FREE)
Seems entirely too obvious, and some people out there don't have the most scenic of landscapes to gaze upon, but regardless, GET OUT OF THE HOUSE! Whether you live in Columbia, Missouri or North Shore, Hawaii, get up and go for a walk. It's good for your mind, body and soul. Trust me.

3. State Parks (FREE - $5.00)
This of course solely relies on where you are geographically, but typically there is a near by state park that could use a visit from you. Normally state parks do have a small fee to enter, but it's a couple bucks well spent. Pack up the shitty peanut butter and jelly you usually make yourself, grab a capri sun, an apple, and head down to the state park and eat it there. Granted I haven't been to every state park, but the ones I have visited are always clean and have sectioned off a portion of the state worth visiting. Find the nearest state park to you at the National Park Service site.

4. Arts/Crafts (FREE)
I'm not asking you to get crazy with sponge stamps  or send all your friends origami master pieces in the mail. Simply bust out a pencil and paper and doodle, sketch, and draw. This requires no skill and should not be taken as an assignment or anything more than freeing up your mind. Plus, art has proven to reduce stress, even if you suck at it.

5. Journaling (FREE)
Not only is this a way for you to get some angst of your chest or just logging in what you ate for the day so you can look back next year and giggle at your poor, unhealthy diet... it doesn't matter. In stressful times of your life, such as wallowing in unemployment, journaling is the first thing any doctor will tell you to do to reduce stress. There are tons of benefits to writing your thoughts down aside from just occupying time in your day!


6. Start A Blog (FREE)
Here is something that we obviously have used quite a bit to occupy our free time... blogging! Blogging is completely free, and just as mentioned above in journaling, blogging can be therapeutic and a stress reducer. Essentially you can blog about what ever the hell you want. If it's just to act as an online journal, or a topic you love, or just posting random crap you find on the internet... the blogging world is your oyster. Obviously, we suggest blogger.com, but there is also tumblr.comlivejournal.comwordpress.com and tons of other similar blogging sites that are only a google search away.

7. Museum (typically FREE)
It does not matter if you're a 20 something and think these types of activities only come in handy when your folks are in town to visit, get over yourself and venture out to a museum. If it's a local museum about your town or a Holocaust museum, the power of gaining knowledge and getting out of the house is all that counts here. And best yet, 9 times out of 10 the museum is completely free. Don't know where the hell the closest museum is to you? Not a problem, check out mapmuse.com. Now you have no excuse, go get your learn on!

8. New Hobby (FREE)
Guitar, juggling, knitting, painting, yoga, boxing, sleeping... what ever it may be, let's get crackin' on a new hobby while we are broke and bored, shall we? Now, if you don't have a dusty acoustic guitar Uncle Teddy gave you in 7th grade laying around, or don't have the money to run out and buy painting supplies, you may have to rack your brain for an hobby you always really wanted to do and budget it for yourself. But, we really recommend figuring out something new to learn, and put forth the effort. It exercises the brain and keeps you from losing your mind on those down-in-dump-kind-of-days.

9. Animal Shelter (FREE)
Love dogs? Yea, so do we! Take a portion of your boring, unsuccessful day and head down to your local Humane Society and play with the dogs! Half volunteering (which we know feeds the soul) and half just getting to hang out with awesome dogs (and cats). The Humane Society are always welcoming to volunteers, so go out there and show some love to Shadow, Chance, and Sassy.

10. Video Game Rentals ($2.00)
I'm sure most of you have already stumbled to a Redbox or two in your days. They recently began to offer video game rentals for 2 dollars. Granted, it's only for the day, it does prove to be an affordable activity to do on a Saturday afternoon. Plus, you can have that quality bonding time with your roommates while you whoop their ass in Modern Warfare 3, and proceed to brag about it for the rest of the week.

Written By: Elyse E. Tishuk

Monday, December 12, 2011

Lets Cover The Cover Letter, Shall We?


So I have been getting loads of requests to touch on the topic of cover letters.  Well maybe I haven’t been getting loads, but definitely handfuls of requests.  Ok, I haven’t gotten any, but I still want to write about it, so listen up.

Cover letters can make or break your chances of getting your foot in the door at a company, even if it is only for an interview.  At this point in your career path, you most likely have little to no real professional experience.  You have made your resume look as good as it’s going to get.  And let’s be honest, it still looks like shit.  Those lame graphics you have hanging around the corners of it aren’t going to save the fact that your professional career consists of a restaurant job, a couple manual labor summer jobs, and a weird warehouse job that somehow only lasted one month.  Oh, and if you’re wondering, that two-week period you spent cleaning out your pack rat of a grandmother’s garage doesn’t count as community service.  I’m not saying much, but what I am telling you is that your resume is toilet paper.  Ok? Ok.  Moving on.

So that leaves the cover letter.  Yes, that godforsaken three paragraph long BS about your life up to this point and how you are just picture perfect for the open position as a blah blah blah, whatever.  If you are like me, you are completely sick and tired of trying to write a new cover letter for every not job you are going for.  I also hope you are like me if the fact that you still put forth the effort to write a top notch cover letter every time you find yourself applying for a job.  Listen, cause this shit is important.  Your cover letter is most likely the first thing a prospective employer is going to look at so make it badass.  Make those words jump off the page and down that bastard’s throat.  Make his or her eyes cry with tears of amazement at your accomplishments.  Make them fear the consequences of not hiring you.  Anyway, you get the idea.  Here are a few tips to take your cover letter to the next level.  Hot damn, here we go.

Proofread:

Yes, this is completely obvious.  However, you wouldn’t believe the amount of times I have written a cover letter, sent the damn thing, and then looked through it only to find misspellings and overused words (“simply” being one of my notoriously frequent words).  Honestly, this is probably the biggest issue with cover letters.  You have taken the time to write something you think an employer would want to read, so take the extra five minutes to comb through that beast and correct any errors.  Heck, even read it aloud.  Nuff said about that.


Consider Your Audience:

If you were writing a cover letter for a job as a comedian, you would try to be funny right?  Well the same thing applies to every other career out there.  If you are applying for a job somewhere along the creative spectrum, try to be creative as possible.  Now creativity is all about you so I won’t go into too much detail, but remember you have to stand out.  On the flipside, if you are applying for something that requires you to pay acute attention to detail, let your cover letter become an example of your ability to pay attention to those details.  Basically what I am trying to say is that every cover letter should have a voice of its own, so no cookie cutter, all inclusive and generalized letters that use big, hyphenated words like “hard-working” or “well-liked”.  These people are probably looking at hundreds of cover letters each day, so make yours better than everyone else’s.


The Closing:

There isn’t much to say about this.  However, your cover letter needs to make it seem like you are a considerate person, even if you are total shit sack. You need to create the illusion that you have that particular company’s best interests in mind.  Make sure you thank them for taking the time out of their salary-filled day to read your pathetic little letter.  Heck, thank them for even considering it.  Also, make sure you sound eager to hear back from them, but try not to sound like the desperate fool you are.  Here is an example of a decent closing:

“I hope we can speak further in the near future about this possible opportunity.  Thank you for your time and consideration.

Regards,

Burt Reynolds”

This is only an example.  Find one that works for you.

If All Else Fails:

If all else fails, just go all out.  Write the most ridiculous cover letter you can think of.  Lie.  Lie so much that it is obvious you cannot have possibly achieved so much in your short life.  Make sure those chumps know what’s coming when they hire you.  Demand an interview.  Do anything you like.  If you actually want the job, I would refrain from cursing at the employer.  Also, assuming you don’t want the cops at your doorstep, no threats.  Still, just go for it.  Cause in the end, what does it matter?  There are a million jobs out there.  Maybe they aren’t in your town, city, state, or country, but they are out there.  It’s up to you to write a few kick ass cover letters and show those stick in the muds that our generation is ready to start taking over the world.  Right place at the right time.  That’s all it takes.  I’m done.

Disclaimer:  I have used all of these aforementioned tactics, and I am still unemployed.  However, I have landed some really good interviews with them.  That means either A: The bastards hate me, or 2: I just haven’t really nailed it yet.  Either way, use these tips at your own risk.

Written By: Adam E. Hascall

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Tis The Season...

It’s that damn time of the year again. The holiday season is rapidly approaching, and you’re getting that familiar warm, fuzzy feeling of failure, stress, overwhelmed and unsuccessful-ness. With Christmas just around the corner many of us don’t have a dime to spare for the shopping of gifts for our loved ones. It hurts your pride a little bit knowing good and well you cannot afford to spoil your family and friends with presents! But, have no fear young ones; The Unsuccessful has an early Christmas gift for YOU! We have countless money saving ideas and conventional gift alternatives!

ONLINE SHOPPING:
It’s 2011; all of us should know that shopping online is the go-to. But, lets dig a little deeper in the tangled World Wide Web and uncover some really great deals. Because I've been broke for a few years  now, I'm well versed in discount shopping, and personally vouch for all of these sites being extremely beneficial. 

This was upon the first stop in my internet quest. This little portion of Redbookmag.com gives you a flipbook type feature of random gifts all under $20.00. It allows you to cut out the task of you sifting through a bunch of crap on a bunch of crappy sites, and drowning in the vast corners of your brain just trying to think of something for a loved one. This serves as a middleman making it more of a “stumble upon” for something that may be suitable for mom and dad or Aunt Betsy with the lazy eye and a weird laugh-cackle. 


Considering most of you reading this are young and really unbelievably awesome just like us, you most likely have some good buds that deserve a little gift for the holiday. Well, let us introduce you to the wonderful world of Whiskey Militia. This site puts a ridiculously awesome deal from major action sport, trendy brands on their page every 20 minutes. So, no time to debate and think about your purchase, you have just moments to make the purchase. Not to worry about buyer’s remorse, when I say “ridiculously awesome” deals, I mean it.

I hate gift baskets. Everyone hates gift baskets. Honestly, who wants 10 different flavors of mustard from some company they’ve never heard of?  You go and spend 15 bucks on a gift basket just to gift it for the sake of “giving”. It’s thoughtless, essentially defeating the purpose of gift giving. It’s just a bunch of crap that no one wants and ends up being tossed or used as a paperweight on their desk. Lets spend 15 dollars on something worth spending it on. Let’s get personal. Personalizationmall.com is a site that gives practical, yet meaningful gifts. Customize and personalize affordable knick-knacks. This seems to serve as a perfect gift solution for parents and co-workers at that annoying Secret Santa company party youre forced to go to.

D.I.Y
Ah, yes. You probably thought we were going to go here, and we totes-magoats are going here. Listen, every close relative or even a good friend appreciates something hand crafted. It shows effort and thought. So, don't beat yourself up and think that this is not a logical gift idea. If you are worried about your artistic abilities or your lack of creativity, allow us to spark some ideas for you with the following [incredibly foul, low-budget, crappy quality] film...


video


Okay, now seriously, lets give you actual resources to light a fire under your ass and get the ball rolling on some D.I.Y gifts and ideas.




Written By: Elyse E. Tishuk

Friday, December 9, 2011

TGIF


Dearest Unemployed Readers,

It’s Friday.  For the love of god, cut yourself some slack and spend some money you don’t have.  Go out and shoot some pool over a couple of ice-cold beers.  Go eat at that restaurant you have been eyeballing for the past two weeks.  Life can’t be based completely around fretting.  Mingle with a bunch of people you don’t know.  You have probably spent the better part of the week in limbo between groceries or fun.  Well, I’m here to tell you to nut up, quit crying about not having any money, and go spend twenty bucks on a little bit of fun.  If you didn’t get that call or email you were waiting for, it’s too late now, so do something for yourself.  Because if you don’t cut loose every once in awhile…Jesus, you’ll go crazy.

Sincerely,

TheUnsuccesful


PS- We are working on putting together a fun little video of cheap ways to get by gift-wise this Christmas season so stay posted.




Written By: Adam E. Hascall

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Scammin' Scumbags


Word to the wise: If it seems fishy, it probably is.  In today’s job forums there are thousands of jobs posted every day.  Even though many of the current jobsites try to monitor scams and frauds, there are bound to be some that have slipped through the cracks.  If you have come to the point where you are willing to apply for anything, it’s time to put your scamomoniter and fraudar to the test.  If you have no idea what I’m talking about, chances are I made those words up about ten seconds ago.  Anyway, here are a couple tools to get you informed before jumping head first into a lion pit.

Research the Company:

I know this seems obvious, but before you press your clothes and go to take on the world, you might want to look into the company you are interviewing for.  Say you are searching for jobs on Craigslist. This site allows prospective employers to remain anonymous, which can be a breeding ground for scammers.  If you get the call for an interview of simply have to call to schedule on yourself, make sure to ask for the company’s name.  From here you can Google search the company.  For me, if the company’s name isn’t the first search finding, that’s red flag number one.  In this day in age, if a company doesn’t have a website, something isn’t quite squared away.  If in fact the company does have a website, take the time to look into it a bit.  First, look to see if the photos are genuine images.  If they seem like stock images from some database, I’d say that is another red flag.  Most legitimate companies are going to put a lot of work into their site, because a good chunk of business is going to come from online content.  Also, if they have information about the company, do a little light reading.  If everything seems a bit vague as you read, there is probably a reason. 

Scam Report Websites:

Ok, now that you have done some investigating on your own and still aren’t convinced, it’s time to delve a little deeper.  Because the online job forums have exploded in the past few years, there have been sites launched with the sole purpose of exposing fraudulent or immoral companies.  Sites such as ripoffreport.com and scam.com are open forums for people who have experienced certain scam operations firsthand.  If you find that the company you are getting ready to interview for is on either of these sites, it’s time to abandon ship.

Better Business Bureau (BBB):

The Better Business Bureau is an organization that is in place to make sure businesses are operating with integrity and are not abusing consumers.  Any real business is always trying to better their status with the local BBB. Say you found a company hiring on Monster.com or Indeed.com.  If you head to the BBB website, you simply punch in the company’s name in the search engine, and boom, you have their BBB rating.  Here, you can also research any complaints or disputes that have happened.  Keep in mind that some companies are still young enough that they haven’t gone through the process of getting a rating from the Better Business Bureau, so don’t make your decisions based solely on this website.


Look for Warning Signs During the Interview:

If you have disregarded everything I have mentioned up to this point or couldn’t rummage up any dirt on your particular company, sounds like you have an interview to go to.  There are still a few things you should look for if you are skeptical at all.  First and foremost, never pay any money up front to start at a company.  The reasons why should be apparent.  No exceptions.  Secondly, if it seems as though the interviewer is selling you the company he or she works for, take that as a bad sign.  Interviews are meant to be a company’s opportunity to find out about you, not the other way around.  Lastly, if you discover that your income is based purely on commission, make sure you understand just how the commission will be paid out.  If you don’t like it, BAIL!!!!!!

We know you’re hungry… scratch that, starving for a job, any job. But, never sacrifice your morals for a pay check. Now go young Padawan.  Go forth into the job search with your new tools of deduction.   If you spot a scam, bail! If you are sitting in an interview and something stinks to high hell, BAIL!  Basically, if you don’t like what you’re hearing, bail bail bail!!!!  Do I like typing the word bail?  Maybe.  BAIL!


Written By: Adam E. Hascall

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Young and unemployable, lonely, drunk and beautiful

Figured we would add some multimedia to this here blog. As much as swimming in the unemployed ocean has been ever so fun, and time consuming, ultimately we kind of just listen to music all day too. Seems only fitting we share some of what keeps us sane, good music. 

Just moments ago Adam and I were sitting on my bedroom floor, not for the sake of it being more practical to sit on my floor, but because I have no furniture. Go figure, can't afford a bed or a simple decorative chair. Anyways, point is, this song is played through Adam's computer speakers. I felt it completely necessary to post up here for you to give a listen and chuckle at it's relevance to the blog. Enjoy. 
   


We urge you to check out more of Deaf Havana



Written By: Elyse E. Tishuk