Sunday, September 13, 2009



In Alberta I always encounter a bit of hostility when somebody learns about which school is my alma mater. One guy once told me that he'd intentionally hire employees from any institution but mine, regardless of technical merit, simply out of spite.

This is rather frustrating for me, because while I was in Waterloo I encountered hostility for being an Albertan. One interviewer at a major smartphone manufacturer told me when the interview began that he "wouldn't hold it against me" for being an Albertan.

Either way, it seems like I can't win. Except for this one time:

In 2002 I decided to take a break from my co-op program and spend the summer at home with my friends and family. I took a job with my local municipal government to pay the bills.

One day, one of the IT guys walked into the office that I shared with another summer student. He hadn't met me yet, so my office mate introduced me to him. As soon as he found out where I was going to school, he started tearing into me. "So what on earth are you doing back here?" he asked.

After I explained why I came home, he made some kind of snide, slightly offensive remark. Noticing that I was not exactly impressed, he then looked at my office mate and said, "I guess he doesn't have a sense of humour."

I glared at him and retorted, "Maybe you're not funny."

I must have caught him off guard, because he frowned and promptly left. For the rest of the summer I was stuck having to do my own IT support. The satisfaction that I felt made it entirely worthwhile.


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