What if every potential parent had to go through the job interview process?
Recruiter: So, Aaron, you’re here for the father position right?
Me: That’s right sir. But I have to admit I’m a little confused by the classified ad. It just says “self-starter and jack of all trades required.” Can you be a little clearer about what this position entails?
Me: Okay. First of all, what are the hours like? Is this a 9 to 5 kind of thing?
Recruiter: Well, I’ll be honest. The hours for this particular job can add up pretty quick. Mainly because you work around the clock.
Me: I’m sorry, did you say around the clock?
Recruiter: That’s right. It’s a 24/7 position. Even if you’re asleep in the middle of the night, it doesn’t matter. You show up when you’re needed, no questions asked.
Me: Um, ok. So how does that affect my vacation time?
Recruiter: Ah yes. Vacation. Well, the good news is you still get some vacation. Two weeks to be exact.
Me: Phew. Okay, now we’re talking. I’ve had a trip to Vegas all planned out in my head for awhile and I think it’d be great to go with some friends, play blackjack all night, get wasted…
Recruiter: Yeah, I don’t think so. You see, technically you get vacation, but it’s not really the same kind of vacation you’ve gotten used to. In fact, your time away from work will actually be more stressful than your regular work week. And forget Vegas, think more along the lines of Disney World. Or your local disease-infested Chuck E. Cheese’s.
Me: Wow. So can you describe what my work environment will be like?
Recruiter: Well, you’ll definitely need to be a multi-tasker. In this job you’ll never do just one thing at a time ever again. There’s also a large amount of housekeeping duties you’ll be tasked with. Laundry, dirty dishes, mopping the floor and then some more laundry. You’ll also be required to lift increasingly heavy bundles, and you must possess a valid driver’s license because you’ll basically be a chauffeur in your “spare time.”
Me: Whoa. Anything else I should know about additional job duties?
Recruiter: No no no, it’s really not that bad. Although you will need to be a handyman because it will be your responsibility to fix just about everything that gets broken. Not to mention you’ll need a fair amount of medical expertise as well. Oh, and I’d like for you to have some expertise in the paranormal for the times you’re tasked with chasing away ghosts and monsters.
Me: The paranormal? Medical training? Anything else?
Recruiter: Actually yes. Have you ever worked with hazardous materials? Because I should warn you now you can’t do this job with a weak stomach. It’s pretty much a given you’ll be dealing directly with human feces for the first few years and I can say with 100% certainty you will be urinated on and shat upon.
Me: I’m going to be peed and pooped on? Whoa. Okay, this was not what I expected. If I’m going to have human crap on me this job better have some ridiculous health insurance benefits.”
Recruiter: Nope. In fact, you pay for their medical costs.
Me: Oh. Well then the pay for this job must be off the charts. Let’s hear it.
Recruiter: I can absolutely see how you’d think that. But here’s the kicker. You ready? YOU actually pay for THEM.
Me: Get the fuck out of here.
Recruiter: Uh uh uh. First of all, you’re a role model now so no swearing. Second, I’m not kidding. You do all this work and put in countless hours of overtime. You’re never off the clock and even if you manage to get away for a few hours, your mind never leaves the job. You’re a doctor, a chauffeur, a disciplinarian, a teacher, a cleaner, a cook and a repairman and you do it all with endless patience and an unbreakable sense of humor. And you’ll have this never-ending job for the rest of your life.
Me: I’m sorry if this seems insensitive but I have to ask—why the hell would anyone ever take this job?
Recruiter: Two reasons. I’ll show you the first one.
Me: OK, I admit it. That looks pretty awesome. But I’m gonna need a little more than that to accept the position. What’s the other reason?
Recruiter: An essential part of the job is having sex first.
Me: Sign me up.
Photos top: KellyB/Flickr bottom: Aaron Gouveia