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Week 4: The Job Interview Continues

Cadets on at the firearms range

“Stop! Police! You're under arrest for a fashion violation!”


I've already picked up a number of fashion tips: after the LA for my hair, fly-aways became a thing of the past. I apply so much hairspray that I'm essentially wearing a hair-helmet! And something else of interest includes making sure your epaulettes are fastened properly or you may end up losing one or both at potentially very inopportune times. This may happen while doing push-ups during Drill, or perhaps before Drill you decide to visit the washroom and because everything needs to be accomplished in lightning speed around here you don't realize that one of your epaulettes is starting to fall, and fall, and fall... and into the bowl it goes! I can just imagine the potential for a heart attack seeing one of those blue things floating around like an abandoned ship; it hasn't happened to me yet (and hopefully it won't) however, some others have not been so fortunate.

At least I'm a little less confused in Firearms these days. We've learned how to clean our pistols and my aim is improving. I seem to be hitting the target with greater accuracy but I'm still not a hundred per cent confident in my techniques. When we're on the range I always feel like I'm hesitating or making terrible mistakes. So after the last class when someone informed me that the facilitator wanted to speak with me, my reaction was obviously one of panic: “Oh, no! What have I done now?!” I was pleasantly surprised when the Cpl. told me that I, along with another troopmate, had the best technique and approach to drawing, firing, holstering, etc. in our troop. In fact, he asked that we assist one of the others and help him master some of the fundamentals. Quite naturally I was a little shocked and dumbfounded!

Something that did not surprise me was the amount of paperwork we need to fill out for each and every file. I could see the colour draining from some of my troopmates' faces as we went over the many forms that need to be filled out for investigative files. Fortunately for me, I am used to the long-winded processes of compiling and organizing information so this did not faze me terribly. I guess you could label it as a necessary evil.

I have come to realize that everything we do, and the experiences we endure, are all based on necessity. It's true what they keep telling us: “These 24 weeks will be the longest job interview you'll ever encounter.” Everything is a test: skills, abilities, demeanour, but most of all it's time management. Can you handle the pressure? Can you get yourself organized? Can you overcome the urge to give up when the going gets tough? And it's not only during working hours; you're under scrutiny 24/7. Of course, however demanding the program is, it's good practise for the future, because as a Regular Member we may also be on-call any day, anytime and anywhere. I guess it reminds us that the weekend, a holiday, or time off in general is a luxury that should be enjoyed, not taken for granted.