I got the most bizarre letter today, in response to a job as a librarian for an employer who shall remain unnamed, more than 7 months after I'd been interviewed.*
Dear Ms. Lavigne:
After a careful assessment of the information you have provided on your application for the above-mentioned appointment process, the persons responsible for assessment have concluded that you do not meet the following merit criteria identified for screening:
Knowledge of the principles, theories, techniques and practices of library and information science related to the delivery of research and reference services.
Consequently, you will not be considered further in this appointment process.
As you can undoubtedly imagine, this comes as quite a shock to me since, with the exception of my recent stint teaching English in Japan, I have spent the better part of the last 5 years (and more!)** labouring under the belief that I have been, in fact, delivering research and reference services to others. But apparently, I was wrong.
It turns out the library in question hired someone for the position months and months ago, and it was only recently discovered that HR had never sent letters advising the various candidates. I suspect there was a scramble, and somewhere along the way, the wrong box got ticked off next to my name, kind of like when the JET people marked me down in their database as re-contracting, instead of not. I'm not looking for sympathy - I didn't even really want the job in the first place - and in fact, I think it's the funniest thing to have happened to me yet all year!***
* Surely the mention of the extreme time-delay has given the employer away as government. And to be fair, the letter came from the Human Resources section of the particular department in question - I like to feel that the librarians at the library itself would have never branded me in that manner.
** I first started working in law library reference services in 2000, so you do the math.
*** That makes my life sound boring. Make it "this week".