Monday, January 17, 2011

One of the nicest compliments I've ever received...

Wasn't when my 27-year-old stylist assumed "we were the same age" (and this was just last year).
Wasn't when my dermatologist told me I had "fabulous" skin (yes, he frequently used the word "fabulous" and said this during a full-body skin cancer check).
Wasn't when a good friend of many years sent me a birthday package addressed to "Kelly Love Johnson, Rock Star."
Wasn't when I got a "fan email" recently - two years after my book came out - from a lovely 25-year-old woman who told me that my book gave her the courage to ask her boss for a raise after 3 years on the job - and she got it.

I've been on a lot of job interviews in the past few months because I'm searching for the perfect day job (something I can be passionate about, challenged by, creatively stimulated, etc.). I'm interviewing the interviewer as much as they're interviewing me (because of all of the above, I wouldn't accept a job if I didn't think it would be my perfect day job). In one of these interviews, the woman conducting the interview told me she Googled me (good for her!) and found this blog. I don't hide my's actually on my LinkedIn profile...but I'm always a little nervous when someone I meet for the first time brings it up (as in "oh crap, have I dropped the f-bomb recently? Did I say I hate pork and her family owns a pig farm? Do I talk too much about watching TV? Does she think I'm totally neurotic?").

Anyhoochie, what she said (and I'm paraphrasing) is that she spent a good bit of time perusing my archives here, found them amusing, but what impressed her the most is that I (a) never trashed my then current day job and (b) when I talked about work, even in a funny way, I kept it professional. In other words, I walk the line. I'm honest, but not so honest I'd get Dooced. I was really flattered, but I had to be honest: I've never had a day job that didn't encourage me to be creative, be myself, and when I have been in situations (hello politics) that require me to keep my mouth shut, I'm smart enough to do it.

After our interview, I really started thinking about it. I've had bad days at work. I've written about them, but not in such a way that disparaged my employer (my bad days at work had everything to do with me and nothing to do with them anyway). I've had jobs go wrong, but I had the sense to make a graceful exit and not use this site to bitch about it. And other than cancer, death, and 3rd degree burns, everything is funny - EVENTUALLY. So yes, I've been in bad work situations. I've had to leave jobs with a broken heart. I've had bad bosses. I've found myself curled up on the living room rug in a fetal position, sobbing into my dog's fur. But I didn't write about it at the time. Because it wasn't funny at the time.

It is now. I talk to a friend and former co-worker occasionally about a shared boss's craziness (this is from YEARS ago so don't get all bajiggity thinking I'm referring to you) and we giggle our asses off. Would I write about those stories here? Probably not. Maybe at some point. I don't know. I've gone a little soft as I've gotten older and I no longer enjoy hurting people's feelings. But it's funny now. It wasn't funny when it was happening and I had to step out of the office, get in my car, make sure the windows were up, and scream my head off. The stories are too damn good to keep hidden away forever and ever, so I'm writing them down - as personal narrative that I may or may not include in my second book.

BACK to my point: I've been blogging here for more than 7 years and through 3 or 4 day jobs. And the fact that someone noticed that I can write, maintain a sense of humor, not whine about my job, and protect my then employer's privacy all at the same time was nice to hear. I didn't end up taking the job, but I took the compliment.


  1. As well you should! Always been a fan of your writing: blog, book and otherwise. Big fan of this post in fact:) So please add this to your list of compliments: you rock.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...