Chapter 4: A "The Song of the Stormy Petrel" to Shock the Masses!
In the room.
In fact, they had not even prepared the second question. They planned to brush Zhang Ye off with the first, but now under these circumstances, the eight interviewers looked at each other without knowing how to give a score. According to the on-the-spot performance, giving this young man a hundred points was necessary. No, it wasn't too much to give him 200 points!
He had read it in ten seconds? Recited more than 900 words off script?
What sort of godly person could do this?
Previously, the interviewers thought Zhang Ye was an idiot for not having any expression. However, apparently it was because he was extremely confident. He had never found the thousand words a problem. Correspondingly, it was them, the interviewers, who were idiots!
However, if they were to give Zhang Ye a perfect score, then it was equivalent to hiring him. This young man's written test results may have passed, but it was not outstanding amongst the more than 20 people. The differences between the candidates weren't huge, so the interview was the best way to differentiate them. 80 points was a very high score, so giving a perfect score meant that he would definitely be ranked in the top two amongst the more than 20 people. Unfortunately, Zhang Ye's qualifications were not acceptable to them. His looks were too average and even a radio host who usually does not need to show his face would still need to show his face occasionally. For example, there would be activities or public appearances. If his looks did not make the cut, it would affect the listeners after they saw him. Hence, good looks and a tall height were essential.
Li Honglian was in a dilemma, "Old Zhao?"
Zhao Guozhou sighed and said earnestly to Zhang Ye, "Little Zhang, we can tell from this interview that you are a rare talent. Furthermore, you are a specialized course graduate. We should greatly welcome you; that is indeed the case. However, you.. chose the wrong profession. I do not need to talk about your looks. I guess your college's teachers have given you advice on that matter. The radio profession is like that. How about this? I'll give you a backdoor and we don't need to have the second interview question. There are many positions in our radio station. As long as it's a behind-the-scenes position and not a host position, you can choose any of them. I will pass you immediately. Bring your things tomorrow and report for work. If you want to go down the road of being a host, then it is really not easy. Think through my words."
Without a second thought, Zhang Ye said, "Teacher, thank you for your kindness. I know my qualifications make my path arduous. However, I only want to apply to be a broadcasting host." This was his insistence on his dreams. If he were willing to switch to another job, Zhang Ye would have done so long ago. He would not have remained jobless to this day.
Zhao Guozhou waved his hand. This kid sure didn't listen to advice.
Li Honglian also smacked her lips, "Are you sure? Let me give you a warning. The second interview question is not easier than the first. It's almost impossible for you to pass. Young lad, it's not that we are purposely making it difficult for you. Interviews are like that. We give a question of appropriate difficulty according to the candidate's qualifications. Your qualifications really can't pass the threshold needed for a broadcasting host. That's why our questions are correspondingly harder. As such, you need to have far more outstanding talent in order to mask the qualifications you lack. I advise you to think over Director Zhao's words."
Wasn't this making it difficult?
You are intentionally making it difficult!
Zhang Ye was a very stubborn man, and insisted, "There is no need to think about it further. Please give your second question."
Li Honglian was exasperated at his failure to make good. She shook her head and was also angry. "Alright, I am in charge of the foreign language channel. There are many English-speaking talents in the station, but we are lacking a person with talent in Russian. This recruiter was originally hoping to get someone who had a basic foundation in Russian. If you can compose a modern poem in Russian that makes us satisfied, then I'll give you full marks for the interview!"
He still needed to compose a poem in Russian?
Zhao Guozhou looked sideways at Li Honglian and did not make a sound. It was a tacit consent.
The other interviewers had different expressions on their faces. Zhang Ye had showcased something that had left them speechless. They knew Zhang Ye was someone with ability, but not having good looks in the broadcasting host profession was a lethal deathblow. Except for a very few people with extremely outstanding talent, very few people could break through this situation. Hence, it could be seen from the second question that Li Honglian was not giving Zhang Ye an inkling of a chance. Russian? Zhang Ye's resume was right in front of them. The foreign language listed there was only English. That was the only foreign language taught in the university. He wasn't in a foreign language major and, even if he was in a specialized class, a teacher would not be so free as to teach Russian! Without knowing this language, there was no reason to even mention composing poems. If you couldn't even speak it, how could you compose it?
Zhang Ye had already expected that the second question would not be easy, but he had never expected it to be of such difficulty. Not a single chance was given to him. And it was in Russian? Zhang Ye wasn't even good at English. He had barely passed the basic eligibility test for graduation, so how could he know some bull**** Russian!? Damn it. I have a harder path ahead, just because I'm not good-looking? And I need to suffer such unfair treatment and torture? What are you basing it on? What are you basing your decision on, that makes you think I can't make the cut? Why will no one give me a chance? I want fairness! Is that so hard?
Li Honglian's nails were tinkling on her tea cup. "The poem needs to be an original work of yours. Do not read the famous works of the famous Chen Tianmo or Wells. I'm looking at your language skills and also your literary knowledge. These are all related. Begin."
And it had to be an original poem? An interviewer even thought in his mind, "What's the point of carrying on? Just get the next person. Even a person who professionally does Russian would not be able to use Russian to compose a poem, much less a person who doesn't know Russian!
Who are they? Why does it sound familiar?
Zhang Ye suddenly recalled. Chen Tianmo was someone he caught a glimpse of when he searched the internet. He was now one of the most famous poets in the country. In the altered world, Zhang Ye's Xu Zhimo poem collection by the window sill had changed into Chen Tianmo's! He had nearly forgotten that this world no longer had Xu Zhimo or Pushkin. Replacing them were this world's poets and works he had never seen before. Zhang Ye finally refocused and had a brilliant flash in his mind. If he had never seen the poems in this world, then this world would definitely not have seen the famous poems of his world!
Zhao Guozhou was slightly sympathetic and added on, "Little Zhang, it's not too late to regret now. My offer still stands. You don't have to take the second question's test. I will arrange for a behind-the-scenes position for you."
Don't take the test?
Why should I not take the test?
Zhang Ye was already fed up. They had made it difficult for him so many times. Were they even done? You want an original poem in Russian? Sure! I'll create a poem today just for you! I don't know Russian? So what! Zhang Ye had never learned Russian, but that did not mean he didn't know Russian poems! Were these two sentences in conflict? It was completely not in conflict. Back in his college days, the broadcasting major teachers would create all sorts of difficult problems to train them. For example, Zhang Ye clearly remembered one from the second semester of his third year. Their vocal teacher had brought a Russian pronunciation recording of a famous Russian prose and forced Zhang Ye and company to memorize it. Zhang Ye and his classmates found it torturous and took a month before they memorized it. Those days were like a nightmare. But only after memorizing it did Zhang Ye understand his teacher's intentions. His speaking ability and memory had greatly increased. This way of memorizing something and not through understanding the meaning behind the words was very taxing. It was likely that all those who came from the specialized class had such a training experience.
"If you can't do it, let's get the next person." Li Honglian began to chase him away as she flipped to the next resume.
Zhang Ye recalled his Year 3's basic skills and said, "Is prose okay?"
"Prose?" Li Honglian was dumbfounded. You still want to do prose? This was even harder than normal modern poems. Furthermore, it was a foreign language's prose. To Li Honglian, this was on a completely different level of difficulty. She was the only person present who knew Russian. But when she encountered prose, Li Honglian would find it extremely difficult to read it, let alone compose a poem. This Little Zhang sure was good at raising the stakes. "If you want to choose to do the harder prose, I will not stop you. As long as it's an original Russian poem, any theme would do."
"Alright." After he said that, Zhang Ye closed his eyes and stayed silent. He was adjusting his mood.
"Are you done?"
"Why aren't you beginning?"
"Forget it. You haven't even learned Russian. Come again next time for an interview."
"Can you stop wasting our time? There are still others waiting behind you. Go back. Your qualifications are really lacking for a broadcasting host!"
After not getting a response for a long time, the interviewers became more impatient. They began nagging. None of them believed he could speak Russian. Wasn't this a joke!?
As they spoke with doubt and sarcasm, Zhang Ye sounded out from his diaphragm as his eyes opened. The first sentence he said left all the interviewers present gaping!
"He really could speak it?"
"What language was that?"
Zhao Guozhou's eyes glazed over as he looked back at Li Honglian, "Old Li? This is?"
The other interviewers stared back at Director Li. They, too, knew that Director Li knew Russian.
But as they looked over, they saw Li Honglian's eyes staring, and her eyes were eve larger than theirs. Without a word, everyone knew instantly!
What the f***!
You can even speak Russian!?
Zhang Ye began speaking faster and faster. In his voice, it was mixed with pride and apathetic emotion. This was because this poem needed to be recited with such emotions!
Gorky's "The Song of the Stormy Petrel"!
This was a Russian poem that everyone in his world knew. It was even in middle school textbooks. This poem was also precisely expressing the emotions Zhang Ye was feeling at the moment. He recited it with glee. The last sentence was especially nearly shouted out by him!
The poem was done!
Everyone turned silly!