#1 daughter has taken a job. Her job search lasted for one week, just like #2 daughter’s. And she didn’t find her job online. Formerprincess asked whether it was a job based on looks, and indeed it was.

She had been applying for positions with medical and social-service places, but realized that her main goal in taking a job was to get out and meet young people other than submariners, so she went to Abercrombie and Fitch, a popular chain clothing store. She worked at their store in our local mall while she was in school, and they were glad to hire her at their store up there in the frozen north.  This link will take you to an interview with the head guy in which he explains why they hire workers on the basis of their looks.

Do not hope for anything very coherent.

Both my daughters have worked for A&F as “brand reps.” This term describes workers who stand in the doorway wearing size 0 A&F clothes. Their entire job is to look good enough that passersby will think “Oooh, if I buy those $89 jeans, I’ll look like that.” They are not allowed to move away from the door. Music is played at a volume rivalling your loudest local nightclub, and the brand reps are only allowed to stand at the door, flashing smiles when people walk in. If you ask for help, they have to refer you to someone else.

My son-in-law was not allowed to be a brand rep. He is a handsome fellow, but wasn’t buff enough to make the cut for the stand-in-the-doorway job, so he worked in the store with actual customers. There are also the worker bees, who scurry around unpacking and arranging things. #2 daughter wanted to do that, but was not allowed to. She used to tidy the stuff within the area around the door where she was allowed to move, but that behavior is discouraged. I guess passersby are not attracted by people doing work.

Once I learned that the hierarchy was based on appearance, I admit that I did squint at the worker bees from the corner of my eyes, hoping to determine what had made them unsuitable for the brand rep position, but I still don’t know. Maybe they wear size 1.

There is a xanga webring for A&F workers. I have not visited their sites, but there are 136 of them. My girls used to have very funny stories to tell about their experiences at the store. Perhaps the webring has some, too. I used to take their stories back to the store that I manage, to see whether perhaps we could incorporate some of their ideas into our marketing efforts. Perhaps we could hire workers on the basis of how studious they look, and have them stand in the doorway doing math problems? Then passersby would think “Oooh, if I buy some of their books, I’ll be as smart as they are.”

nightstand I have a stack of unread books. This is very unusual for me.  Maybe once a year a concatenation of circumstances leads to this effect. In this stack you can see not only unread books, but even half-read books. I am slowly working my way through The Little Friend by Donna Tartt. I think I should count it for the RIP challenge. It is beautifully written, reminding me of my mother’s storytelling, but is about the murder of a 12-year-old boy, so it creeps me out. I am reading it because it is my physical-world Book Club book. I had thought that perhaps I would read some other book by this author, but I see that she is showing up on the RIP challenge lists, so she may specialripbuttonize in creeping people out. Among the RIP challengers I have found this very entertaining blog. I actually found her because I was looking for data on a book called Shopportunity, and she had written about it. I saw the RIP challenge link and explored further.

Also in the half-finished category is A Civil Campaign, recommended to me by Lostarts. This was my light reading to contrast with The Little Friend. It is well-written, and just your basic Good Story.

However, I realized that September is practically gone, and here I was not having begun the Knitting the Classics book, let alone knitted something inspired by it. So The Time Traveler’s Wife has moved up to the Book in Progress position.

This is a charming book, with intriguing characters and snappy repartee. I don’t know why it was chosen as a “classic” — I really can’t feature it being read a century hence as an example of seminal works of the 21st century — but I am enjoying it.  The time-travel bit is handled in a very unusual and unusually thoughtful way. One reader called it science fiction, but I think they were in error. For one thing, there is no science involved, other than the most sketchy “Gosh, I guess I need a mechanism for the time travel” reference to the traveler’s medical condition. The time-traveler has a chronological disorder, which he compares to epilepsy, which makes him subject to sudden fits of time travel.

I am thinking about making a bag, as the time-traveler’s wife is always leaving him stuff to find when he arrives, naked and hungry, at a new temporal destination. On the other hand, housekeeping is a recurrent theme, so I may accept Natalie’s invitation to join the cult of the dishcloth, and whip one up. That is a project that I could finish by the deadline, after all.

My favorite housekeeping scene thus far is when the male character, Henry, invites his beloved Clare to his apartment for the first time and makes her close her eyes and count to 1000 while he rushes around grabbing up all the mess. We later discover that he has thrown all the mess in the kitchen sink — socks, everything.

This book, by the way, also has one of the most convincing madly-in-love relationships I have encountered in a book.

It occurs to me that I need to tidy up some endings. The Know-It-All does in fact end with the narrator’s wife expecting a baby, and that is all the plot we are going to get. It is a pleasant book to read, though, and good perhaps for bus trips or other occasions when concentration might be difficult. And I took out a wedge of the second Tychus hat and finished it up, and #1 son pronounced it wearable, even though it now has a bit of the scorpion-nose thing going on.