Your kids are getting older; they don’t need you anymore. You have free time, valuable knowledge and a lot of experience. You have a strong work ethic and your own transportation. Your family and friends encourage you to re-enter the workforce because, heck, you just might have something to offer corporate America! You put together a spiffy four-page resume, buy a new beige pantsuit from Ann Taylor Loft, and land your first job interview of this century.
The only glitch is, you secretly don’t want to re-enter the workforce after having absolutely no time to yourself for the past two decades. You want to stay home and finish—well, start—your novel. You want to eat cookies on a plate instead of over the bathroom sink. You don’t care if you’re that mom, the one who never attempts to better herself, the one who complains about her lost earning years, the one who disappoints as a role model.
You want an out—a passive out that doesn’t implicate your lack of ambition. But how? Simply follow these 19 interview techniques, and you will never land the job:
1. Assume your interviewer will be a single man in his late 20s, because aren’t they always? Make it known you endorse this norm and would have a hard time taking orders from a woman.
2. At the start of the interview, when the interviewer asks the obligatory yet insincere question, “Can I get you anything?” surprise him by saying, “Yes, an iced cappuccino would be lovely!”
3. Address your interviewer as “Sir,” and let him wonder if you’re being sarcastic.
4. Use terms like typewriter, word processor, xerox copies and film.
5. When the interviewer asks you, “What are your personal strengths and weaknesses?” respond to both questions with one word: lasagna.
6. Clarify that while you are a PTA mom, you are not the PTA mom who spent a year on Ashley Madison. Then give him a knowing wink.
7. Pull out a long list of dates you’ll need to be off work in order to fulfill a lifelong dream of following the band Phish on tour.
8. Ask your interviewer if he would like to buy any pizza kits to support your son’s baseball fundraiser.
9. Be sure to mention that while you don’t speak a foreign language, you are fluent in half a dozen foreign accents.
10. Include “hosting a candle party” as outside sales experience.
11. Make it known that you would accept a company car, as long as it’s not some hooptie ride that would ruin your street cred.
12. When speaking of your education, brag about earning your bachelorette’s degree from a very credited university.
13. Demand (nicely) that the vending machines be stocked with an assortment of wheat-free snacks to accommodate your gluten intolerance.
14. Make up your own job titles to boost your resume clout, such as CEO: Cooks Entirely Organic-ish, CFO: Cleans for Oreos and CPA: Car-Pools Anonymous.
15. Consent to a pre-hire drug test, then start biting your fingernails manically.
16. Drop something under his desk, and don’t make a move to pick it up. When he reaches for it, pop your head under and say, “Fancy meeting you here!”
17. Wink at your interviewer as often as you can without looking twitchy.
18. If he discusses a dress code, burst into tears.
19. Lastly, agree to the company’s policy restricting social media, then send him a friend request from the parking lot.
That ought to do it, but if the company’s desperate and still offers you the job, you can always pretend you’re pregnant.