I recently applied for a writing internship at a prestigious New York City magazine who caters to “affluent” clients. To prepare for the interview, I fixed up my resume, printed out writing samples, and spent a half hour deciding what to wear. After trying on a dozen outfits, I noticed the time. I had about 4 minutes to get to the corner bus stop in order to catch my ride and arrive on time. So in a blind frenzy, I threw on my faithful, easy to wear dress that always looks good no matter what, grabbed my purse, and made a dash for the bus stop.
After the typical New York City adventure of subways, street signs, and traffic, I finally arrived at the upscale, streamlined office. I was asked to take a seat in the waiting area and breathed a sigh of relief at conquering the chaotic morning. As I waited to be called in, I felt something itch my collar bone. Absent mindedly, I rubbed it when I realized what it was. The tag. Yep, the dress was on backwards.
Again, my old friends, panic and worry, took over and I frantically scanned the hall for a bathroom door so I could flip my dress around. There was none in sight. I nervously eye balled the door to the fire escape, which was around a corner, thinking I could steal just a second of privacy behind that wall. But it was no use. They could call me in at any time and I would just have to deal with it. I ripped the tag off so it wouldn’t peek out and give me away. Luckily the dress is relatively shapeless and had no fancy adornment on either side.
Finally I was called into the interview which went surprisingly well despite my inner turmoil. Before I left, the woman shook my hand and said she would call me soon, then she added, “I just love your dress.” I had to stifle a burst of laughter and stop myself from blurting out that it was on backwards, as I managed a polite, “Thank you.” And although I was ultimately unable to accept, the woman called me the next day and offered me the position.