“Can you tell me a little bit about yourself?”
Yes, of course. Um.. well, I’m from Malaysia. I’m nineteen this year. And I started in studying Singapore since Secondary One, which I was thirteen then. (ugh, the horrible grammar) So I’ve spent six years studying here. It’s like my second home. In fact I actually am more familiar with uh Singapore than uh Malaysia. I find it easier to go around.. the country.. ‘cos of all the public transport in Singapore. In Malaysia, uh.. there’s public transport, but it’s not as good as Singapore’s *shakes head and laughs nervously* nowhere as good. I actually only used the public train system twice but I think I fairly say that they have arrived late… *corrects myself* uh, I mean, they arrive late 100% of the time. *nervous laugh again* *imagines the interviewers to laugh as well* Sometimes they arrive as late as half an hour late.. thirty minutes late (Why do I have to repeat myself here? I’m sure the interviewers are not morons who doesn’t know half an hour equals thirty minutes) So.. they’re not very reliable for me to go around.. with. Singapore is more friendly… in terms of the public transport, more user-friendly. The train tickets are cheaper, they’re subsidized and you can travel from one to the other with like two bucks. two or three… two to four…? Yeah… *clasps hands and look at interviewers expectantly*
Okay…. Thanks, Chuan Ming
uh, you can call me Frederick. I prefer to be called Frederick. Fred-derick.
Okay, Frederick, Tell me about your strengths.
Uh… my strengths? Um, okay, my strengths are… I’m a quick learner. I learn things very fast (duh? They don’t need me to define ‘quick learner’ for them.) Uh.. new things, new umm… subjects… hobbies… like drawing, making music, playing music (what?), playing the guitar, I can learn them quite fast. Of course this applies to my studies as well, I can uh… learn subjects quite fast also. Like new topics… I can… I can grasp quite fast (how many times have I said ‘fast’?) So, this will be a big help for me, my academics. (Funny how I tend to end sentences with a higher pitch i.e. acade-meeeks!) Um… uh, besides that, I’m also not a shy person. I like to learn. So uh, I.. if I have any questions.. .stuff like that (can’t believe I actually said this) things I don’t know.. I would approach the teacher after lesson-time, or like approach my friends… who are good at the subject, so they can teach me, or my- or my seniors.
Okay, Thank you, Frederick. Calm down. Calm down. Okay, now, tell me about your weaknesses.
Uh… my weakness? *laughs nervously* Um… I can be… *pauses to ponder* Uh… my weakness uh? Give me a moment? *looks at the floor and try to think of a weakness* (I literally did this)
Uh, okay never mind, Frederick, can you tell me about what difficulties you may face and how you will overcome them?
You mean, uh… in uni? If I get in?
Okay *says Okay while exhaling hard so it sounds like Okhhhhhhay* I might face difficulties in… people? Like um, maybe I’ll have confrontations with people I disagree with… Like they uh, they don’t listen… Like group project, then there’s er *almost said ‘slacker’ but stopped myself* someone who doesn’t hold.. erm pull his weight, his own weight. I would not know how to confront him (I think I contradicted myself here), like I am not a people person, I…
Okay, CUT! I saw ants crawling over my half-eaten fries and went to dispose of them properly and when I came back I lost the drive to talk to my new imaginary friend, the interviewer.
And I think I probably told them the worst weakness there is. I’m bad around people. They would want to find a leader, no? And a leader is someone who can hold his ground around people. I screwed up. Bad.
Now, FAQ and background story:
No, this is not a real interview, if you have not already guessed. It’s just me selecting some questions off this list: 31 Common Interview Questions, then trying to answer them in real time, without preparations, and then just penning down what I say. You’ll notice alot of ‘ums’, ‘uhs’, ‘erms’ and ‘…’s. Hope this explains why they are intruding on my usually brilliant writing. (I wish.)
Story goes: I received two emails this morning when checking for the Writing 101 prompt from Blogging U (Of course, it’s Saturday and there is no prompt today. Fred, you doofus!) The emails were from National University of Singapore and Singapore Management University respectively, and were requesting my presence for an interview on the 25th and 29th respectively.
This is a sort of practice session to prepare myself for the real thing. What do you think? Would I pass or fail? And if I fail, how miserably would I fail? And did I really not seem calm? Even my imaginary friend told me to calm down. This is bad.