I always thought it would be a fun and exciting job to work for one of Boston's alternative newspapers. I thought I would meet some rad people, make some good connections, get some real life experience in a field vaguely related to what I wanted to do. I have never been so wrong in my life.

Not only did I nearly lose my mind - locked in a windowless, hideously air conditioned, garage converted into office space taking personal ads, BUT I lost even more faith in the human race as a whole (I though working at a hair salon was bad!).

Let this be a warning: Don't ever, ever answer a personal ad. Not that it wasn't bad enough that I had at least three or four people a day looking for phone sex or that I became a personal psychiatrist to several desperate, blubbering, totally insane middle-aged women,whose husbands, dogs and mailmen had all left them that week, but I also had to deal with R.Tuft, a caller who would place ads in numerous papers around the country (we did 200 or so) stating he wanted a woman who could appreciate the "teachings and philosophies of Ayn Rand" -- this in itself, fine - but when it got to the point that he was trying to recruit me to had out personal ad business cards he had printed up with the Ayn Rand quote I had to draw the line. And then there was the deaf system abuser - who would call from Austinthrough a TTY service under several assumed names and try to place numerous ads while at the same time trying to hit on through the TTY operator. Ugh!

I did learn something though. LTR= long-term relationship, C/W is not an acceptible abbreviation from country and western but C&W is. And there is a hell of a difference between TV and t.v.

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