Author : Eugen Spierer

“Why do you want to work for Bosch paper mills?”

The question echoed distantly in my ears. I knew it didn’t matter what I answered, my future was being decided as we were speaking based on the blood sample I had donated five minutes earlier.

“I think the company can offer me a challenging environment to work in. One I can grow in, professionally and personally.”

This was of course, a lie. It didn’t matter what I said. The vice president of the company I was talking to just needed to pass the time until the results came in. My fate was fixed and not dependent upon this conversation’s outcome.

An awkward silence. We both knew what was happening.

“Look,” said the VP, “let’s cut the crap. Why don’t we start by you telling me about your family. What were your parents like?”

“My dad was a maritime engineer and my mother was a bookkeeper.”

“A book keeper, eh?”

I knew this would strike a nerve. Employers look for a pedigree of prestigious employment.

“Yes. She’s worked with Coen and Travis, the shipping company.”

The VP just stared at me with a face devoid of any expression. Probably assessing my value.

The lab technician’s echoing footsteps in the hall sounded like an axe wielder walking toward the hanging post. He came into the room and handed a small computer printout to the VP.

After staring at the bottom of the page for a few seconds, the VP fixed his gaze on me. “Thank you for coming, Mr. Jacobs, unfortunately your past experience is insufficient for us to hire you.”

This must have meant that I failed the genetic test. They probably found out that I had a heart problem that is going to kill me in a few years or that I have reached the peak of my mental capacity. I still don’t know what it was to this day. I stood up, thanked the VP and walked out of the room and into the elevator.

This was my fifth job interview and I had failed them all. The blood test did the trick every time. I would be considering a genetic shift treatment, if they weren’t expensive and illegal.

The elevator’s floor numbers raced by like my life.

The day light momentarily blinded me as I stepped out of the elevator and into the lobby. There was no one there but the security man who, from the look of it, had just finished his night shift.

“How was your interview?” The guard asked.

“It didn’t go well.”

He appeared unsurprised.

“I could have told you it wouldn’t go well,” his voice followed me as I pushed open the door and stepped out into the busy street, “they only like white people around here.”


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