Title: Five jobs Eli applied to
Author: Shenandoah Risu
Content Flags: rejection
Characters: Eli Wallace
Word Count: 683
Excerpt: It was the job application he never even knew about.
Author's Notes: Written for prompt set #156 at the LJ Comm sg1_five_things.
Disclaimer: I don't own SGU. I wouldn't know what to do with it. Now, Young... Young I'd know what to do with. ;-)
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Five jobs Eli applied to
"Simulations Programmer, USAF". That one sounded awesome! Eli filled out the application online and linked to some of his computer programming where he'd aced video games and added his own stuff. The nerds at the Air Force were impressed and brought him in for a test drive, and he programmed some pretty complicated aerial dogfights for them, and the nerds went all gaga over it. Eli felt so sure that he'd nailed it that he bounced when he got the call a few days later.
"You never finished your degree at MIT," the friendly voice on the line said.
"Well, no – it says so in my application. My mom's sick."
"We are aware. But we were just informed that a high school diploma, even if coupled with extraordinary talent, is no longer enough for this position. We're very sorry. And we hope you apply again when you've completed your degree. Your chances of success will be very high by then."
"We regret to inform you that your application to join the mobile team of Geek Squad was rejected. While your programming and repair abilities far exceed our requirements, a routine background check has uncovered several driving violations over the past year. Our mobile team is on the road all day, and an immaculate driving record is mandatory. We suggest you enroll in appropriate Defensive Driving courses and re-apply in 3 years when your record clears."
GameStop surely couldn't be that bad. It was just down the road from his house and he could walk there if necessary. Eli thought the uniform was quite snazzy, what with the little logo on the polo shirt and all. He lasted all of two days because customers kept complaining that he kept spoiling storylines for them and explained too much about various video games. And then he got into a heated argument with his supervisor over a new online multi-player game that he knew he'd be able to crack, while his supervisor claimed it was put out by the government and forbid him to pull it up on the in-store machines. Eli did it anyway and promptly got fired.
He got the job at Best Buy with little trauma. He took the bus to the Mall, brought his own lunch, and stuck to himself. He did mostly repairs, and he saw the weirdest stuff – mostly various drinks spewed onto keyboards, but there were several ant infestations ("Ants are attracted to electronics, idiot, don't put your laptop on the lawn!"), plenty of equipment overheating due to fan failures, and one Blue Screen of Death after the other. Eli sighed and fixed what he could, and when he thought nobody was watching he'd play videogames on those fancy machines. That online game ate up all his spare time by then and he needed a quick fix during working hours. He got his pink slip after only two weeks.
His mom got him a job at Denny's where she worked. She did the early shift which was unmanageable for Eli, so they stuck him on the noon shift. But sadly, this meant that Eli's mom was still at work when he needed to get up, and when he overslept for the third time in a row and didn't show up at all they told him not to come back. His mom was embarrassed beyond belief and it hurt Eli to see her like that, but he also didn't know what else to do. The new video game had taken over his life, and he found himself partnering up with people from all over the world, which meant playing at odd hours. His mom finally gave up on trying to get him out of the house, hoping it would be a phase that would pass.
In the meantime the nerds at the Air Force followed his every step. He was so close. And they would swoop in as soon as he'd broken the code. No more work meant he could devote more time to the game.
It was the job application he never even knew about.
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