I have never been ambitious. As a shoe-gazing teenager I dreamt of being curator of MOMA. Until that is, I realised that this would involve having to actually live in New York, throating loads of study and the humoring and ass kissing of self-indulgent art establishment types, so decided to keep the galleries for socialising. Recently however, I have discovered a new inner sense of ambition. I have finally realised I am a rockin employee, and it is time, after all these years of subservient karma-building to take my rightful seat at the management table. It was with this new-found confidence I found myself applying for my boss’ job. OK, it’s not really a career ambition, I’m not ditching the DM’s for for stupid heels and a skirt I can’t walk in. I just want more cash to buy life’s necessities, like lenses for my camera, a Mac Book Pro and gin. The interview lasted over 4 hours, and was a unbelieveable pile of toot. I made the art installation with the other candidates, careful not to dominate or disappear, yet showing leadership and creativity. I nailed the ‘in-tray exercise’, not really surprising considering I already do the job, and as far as I was concerned interviewed well, even side-stepping the thinly veiled attempt to get me to stab my lovely colleagues in the back. The following afternoon I was summoned to HR. “I am sorry to tell you…” is never a promising start to any discussion, but it wasn’t as such the rejection that got me, it was the reason. There was no question of my skills or experience. My performance was praised, as was my relationship with the ‘team’. Apparently, “we just think you are too nice, and don’t have the strength of character to make the diffiult decisions”. WHAAAAT???? TOO NICE?? Obviously Corporate Toot LLP want their management to be mean, but strength of character? What the what Batman? When it comes to strength of character, I have it in bucket loads. Regardless of my workplace skills, I was an internet dater in my early thirties, and if that won’t give you strength of character, nothing will! In these difficult economic times, where women are discriminated against in terms of pay, promotion and the idea that they may skive off for a year to play with babies, they are then discriminated against in their spare time on dating sites! If you are a single girl in your thirties, not only are you going to be overtaken by a spotty lad from IT in the office, you are not going to get laid either without seriously lowering your standards or jumping through hoops of fire. When I was on the lovin equivalent of ebay, it wasn’t too bad. I spent many a happy evening anethetised by wine, browsing for boys. The dates ranged from the one who didn’t want a drink because he didn’t like using the toilet, to the one who’s older brother I had already dated and the pièce de résistance- the one who pooed in my bed. No strength of character indeed! Happily one of the dates never went home, and is now Mr. Lazycreative. In the time since I have been away from the online dating scene, things have only got worse for the lovely thirty-ish ladies looking for love. Men using fake photos (well, the photo might have been them once, when they had hair) are looking for tall, super-skinny women between the ages of 18-23, regardless of the fact that their diet of Call Of Duty and Dominos have left their 40 year old skin baggy and grey. Overlooking the shallowness of appearance, the social skills of some out there veer towards the sectionable. One beautiful, smart and funny friend of mine is currently on the scene, and in reply to a comment she made about enjoying her own space received an email detailing the value of his home, the fact that it had ‘a generous ammount of rear ammentiy space. The house could be extended (i.e. a precedent has been established) and a development opportunity may arise in the future, which if availed of, could transform it into one of the largest in the district’. I really wish I made that up. But I didn’t. Rejection and disappointment is a part of everyday life, whether it comes from the workplace or a dating site, but it does not erode character, it builds it. Being nice is not a flaw, and I will remain as nice as I can be. Someday soon we Nice will rise up…………………….. and first against the wall will be HR.