The Philosophy of Insulting Job Interviewers

–From Jeff James, Ohio State University School of Law, Date of event: Fall 2001

During the fall 2001 interview season, I had scheduled an on-campus interview with Large Firm X. I didn’t know much about the firm before I got the interview, but after it was scheduled other students told me horror stories about the firm and its attorneys. I went to the interview, but I had already decided not to take it too seriously as I REALLY didn’t want to work there.

Just before the interview, I researched the interviewing attorney’s bio. It noted that he was a member of a philosophy club, so I remembered that little fact in case I needed to make any small talk.

The interview was extremely tense; this guy was a real stiff. Toward the end, I asked him about his involvement in the philosophy club. He told me, “We are a group of about forty who get together twice a month on Saturday nights to have dinner. After dinner, one member gives a lecture on a topic and defends it to the rest of the group.”

For some reason, I said, “Well, I can’t think of a better way to spend a Saturday night!” He looked at me sternly and said, “Well, I enjoy it.”

The interview ended soon after and it was not long before I got a rejection letter from the interviewer I insulted.

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Andrew Jay McClurg is a law professor whose teaching and research interests include tort law, products liability, legal education, privacy law and firearms policy. He holds the Herbert Herff Chair of Excellence in Law at the University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law.
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