“Grassroots” is an organization most notable for galvanizing the Democratic Party during the Obama Campaign. Now, they’re into “Fighting Global Hunger.”

I google Grassroots on “Glass door.com,” a site where ex or current employees are able to write reviews on their company. My findings are slightly grim: overall rating comes to a 2.9 with lots of one and two star ratings punctuated with conspicuously well-written, overly polished 5‘s…My overall impression: Sales Quotas, Brainwashing and Turnover high, Pay low, and Working Conditions poor. “But, I really need a job so get busy,” I tell myself.

Coming out to Hillcrest from my modest working class neighborhood frequently engenders a mini identity crisis in me. As I walk down Fourth avenue passing all the sleek restaurants and hip clothing stores, I wonder if I come across as a cool urbanite. Really? Image is not my thing, I remind myself, while simultaneously making a note to brand myself better. Jeez, I’m a mass of contradictions, I say to myself, But hey! What’s wrong with being a mixed bag? You know like a mutt?. ‘Sides I’m not super fond of groups where all people think, talk, dress, and act the same, I have to remind myself.

I worry about not being hired because of age. I know they do most of their recruiting from colleges. I also worry about the way I’m dressed. . I have a lot of gold on…but only because the interview I’d gone on before had been for a telemarketing position at a diet weight loss clinic and I wanted to look like a “successful“ businesswoman….

Outside of Grassroots, I observe a young man dressed in a colorful African cap, wearing dirty sneakers, smoking Spirit cigarettes, glaring at me somewhat resentfully. Oh no he dinnit! He didn’t just give me that sullen look reserved exclusively for Capitalist Pigs, did he?

During the interview, I notice the Canvassing Director eyes (somewhat disapprovingly?) zeroing in on my thick gold bracelet…Should I have slipped it into my pocket before the interview? But what if it fell out on the moldy carpet and I didn’t hear it clink? Nah, the job wouldn’t be worth the loss of the bracelet.

The angst over my bracelet is causing me inopportune distraction. Wait a minute. What did she just ask? Something about why do I want to help people and what experience do I thus far?

I launch into a monologue on my real life experience helping others. I recount my experience at the Ethridge Center, a non-profit drug program located in South East San Diego. This rehab focuses on helping the seriously underserved of San Diego: folks from the “Bottoms” a wild west world of dystopian proportions. She seems distracted throughout the interview. I leave, positive I will not get the job. Which leads me back to my musings: am I too old, had I not branded myself better? Or is helping the underserved of San Diego irrelevant to World Hunger? Probably none of the above, Sure hope so. . ....

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